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HK Approves Emergency Relief Grant for Earthquake Victims in 3 Provinces

Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government approved on Tuesday a grant of 7 million HK dollars (US$897,896) from the Disaster Relief Fund to World Vision Hong Kong to undertake relief projects for earthquake victims in Gansu, Shaanxi and Sichuan provinces.

The grant is further to a disbursement of 316.8 million HK dollars (US$40.64 million) made earlier for the Relief Headquarters of the Central Government, the Disaster Relief Command of Yingxiu Town, Wenchuan County, The Amity Foundation, Hong Kong Red Cross and World Vision Hong Kong to provide emergency relief to people affected by the earthquake in southwest China's Sichuan Province.

It takes the total value of grants for earthquake victims on the mainland to 323.8 million HK dollars (US$41.53 million).

A spokesman for the HKSAR government said that this had been made possible under a fast-track mechanism set up on the advice of the Disaster Relief Fund Advisory Committee (DRFAC) for the government to process applications from relief organizations for grants to provide relief to the earthquake victims more expeditiously.

"It is hoped that the grant to World Vision Hong Kong will help provide relief to earthquake victims in Gansu, Shaanxi and Sichuan provinces," he said.

"To ensure that the money will be used for the designated purposes, the relief agency has been asked to submit evaluation reports and audited accounts on the use of the grant after the relief project has been completed," the spokesman said.

(Xinhua News Agency May 28, 2008)

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