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Premier Underscores Production Resumption in Quake Zone

China's central and local governments should strive to resume production in earthquake-affected regions along with taking care of lives, said Premier Wen Jiabao.

Wen made the remarks at a disaster-relief meeting on Tuesday, saying the resumption of normality was a priority.

Wen said governments at all levels should make efforts to resume agricultural production. Transport departments should channel agricultural resources including fertilizer, diesel oil and seed to ensure summer crops.

Efforts should be made to control animal diseases and to dispose of waste so that it will do no harm to the surrounding environment.

Disaster-relief groups should devote themselves to repairing damaged equipment and machines in the quake zone to resume agricultural production as soon as possible.

Wen also stressed the importance of restoring industrial production, saying officials should make every effort to resume production of energy resources, as well as the transport of coal, refined oil and natural gas.

Reconstruction of resources production plants and large enterprises would also take priority, said Wen.

He ordered local governments to repair national and provincial highways that connect affected areas to neighboring regions, in order to ensure the transport of food, grain, drinking water, tents and the sick and injured.

Efforts should be made to resume commercial networks and services, and to build shops near residential quarters to provide daily necessities.

Financial services and the power grid should also be restored, he said.

The May 12 quake centered in Sichuan's Wenchuan County had claimed 69,107 lives as of Tuesday noon, the State Council Information Office said.

(Xinhua News Agency June 4, 2008)

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