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Reconstruction Fund Mainly Used to Rebuild Infrastructure

The 70 billion yuan (US$10.14 billion) quake reconstruction fund, allocated by Chinese central government this year, will be mainly spent on infrastructure rebuilding in the quake zone, experts analyzed.

Premier Wen Jiabao announced Wednesday that the central government will allocate 70 billion yuan this year for a reconstruction fund for the quake-hit regions. Wen also pledged to arrange funds for reconstruction over the next two years.

However, there was no government information on how the fund would be managed or spent.

The 70 billion yuan would be mainly used on infrastructure reconstruction, disease prevention, agriculture subsidies and building temporary homes for quake victims, Friday's 21st Century Business Herald cited an anonymous financial expert as saying.

The post-earthquake reconstruction work is expected to take three years, Li Chengyun, vice governor of Sichuan, told a news conference Friday.

A total of 200 billion to 300 billion yuan would be needed during the reconstruction process, the expert estimated.

The death toll from the deadly May 12 earthquake has risen to 55,239 in Sichuan alone as of 7:00 PM Thursday, while 24,949 are still missing.

(Xinhua News Agency May 23, 2008)

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