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Vice Premier Urges Anti-seismic Engineering Innovation

Chinese Vice Premier Hui Liangyu on Monday urged anti-seismic engineering innovation should be applied into house building to ensure all people a "safer shelter."

"Through sharing the latest achievements in earthquake engineering and strengthening international cooperation, we make joint efforts for our safe homes," said Hui at the opening of the 14th World Conference on Earthquake Engineering on Monday.

"We should promote the use of anti-seismic engineering technology innovation to build safer residential areas, communities and cities."

He suggested relevant parties advance their research on earthquake monitoring and forecast, intensify anti-seismic infrastructure construction and improve disaster relief material reserves to enhance the capacity for earthquake prevention and disaster mitigation.

As a country hit frequently and severely by earthquakes, China had attached great importance to quake prevention and relief, he said.

"China achieved a major victory in the May 12 earthquake relief work, and the Chinese government appreciated all kinds of timely aid from the international community."

Also at the conference, Vice Minister of Housing and Urban-Rural Development Huang Wei said by 2020 China expects to have the capacity to better handle quakes measuring up to a 6.0 magnitude, equivalent to the basic seismic intensity in various regions nationwide.

The capacity would feature a sound early warning, an emergency response system, a comprehensive set of laws, regulations and technical standards, and enhanced public awareness on disaster prevention and mitigation, he said.

Because of the vast territory and differentiated conditions in various areas, it would be a long-term initiative to achieve the goal, Huang noted.

The global academic conference, held every four years, was initiated by the International Association of Earthquake Engineering to promote international cooperation among scientists and engineers in the field of earthquake engineering.

The five-day event attracted officials, scientists and scholars from 68 countries and regions.

(Xinhua News Agency October 14, 2008)

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