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China pledges continued financial support for post-quake reconstruction

10-12-2010 15:29 BJT

BEIJING, Oct. 11 (Xinhua) -- China on Monday vowed to continue its financial support to reconstruction projects in areas ravaged by the major Wenchuan earthquake in 2008, promising lower rates on loans and demanding an easier deposit reserve requirement ratio from banks in the regions.

The new pledge came in a joint statement on the website of the People's Bank of China, or the central bank, which announced the continued financial support along with the China Banking Regulatory Commission, the China Securities Regulatory Commission and the China Insurance Regulatory Commission.

Banks in the quake-hit areas should continue to provide financial support and services to reconstruction projects in the regions, as post-earthquake reconstruction is still in a critical period, the statement said.

The magnitude-8.0 quake, with its epicenter in Wenchuan in southwest China's Sichuan Province, left more than 87,000 people dead or missing and more than 374,640 injured. Millions of houses were also flattened during the major quake.

"We should keep the continuity and stability of our financial support to the regions and make our financial services better targeted and more effective," it said.

According to the statement, local banks in the quake-hit areas will continue to enjoy a lower deposit reserve requirement ratio, compared with elsewhere, until June 30, 2011, and such banks will also be exempt from any hike of the reserve requirement ratio during this period.

The statement ordered local bank branches in the quake-hit areas to provide prioritized financial services to projects in fields of infrastructure facilities, agriculture, medium and small enterprises, as well as ecological and environmental protection in the region.

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