Funds help disaster-hit residents

BEIJING: The central government allocated almost 5.5 billion yuan ($814 million) in disaster relief funds ahead of Spring Festival to help people in difficulties because of natural disasters, according to a media release from the Ministry of Emergency Management on Monday.
The past year saw many people’s basic needs affected because of earthquakes, floods and drought. In a move to relieve their suffering, the ministries of finance and emergency management distributed the funds to 32 million people from 1,714 county-level areas in 24 provincial regions, it said.
The release said all the money was handed out before the festival, the most important occasion for family reunions, which fell this year on Jan 22.
In addition to the central government funds, 18 regions, including Hubei and Hebei provinces, arranged 330 million yuan in funds for disaster relief, it said. Sichuan and Yunnan provinces distributed living necessities worth 78.9 million yuan.
To ensure timely distribution of the funds, the Ministry of Emergency Management dispatched seven work groups to 14 provincial regions to supervise and inspect the distribution work, the ministry said.
The natural disasters in the past two years left many people’s houses collapsed or severely damaged. One of the priorities for the work groups is to check whether these people have been adequately accommodated.
–The Daily Mail-China Daily news exchange item