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Foreign Firms Lend a Hand to Flood Victims

China's flood victims are not only attracting attention from their fellow countrymen, but also from some of the international companies that do business in the country.

Bayer Group, a German healthcare, nutrition and hi-tech materials company, sent a humanitarian mission led by its greater China President Michael Koenig, to flood-hit areas in East China's Anhui Province last week.

Bayer donated some 300,000 yuan (US$40,000) worth of daily necessities, including rice and other food, to flood victims in villages in the Huangshan Mountain District, Hefei, capital of Anhui, as well as two counties of Funan and Fengyang.

"As a responsible company that lives up to the motto 'Science for A Better Life', we deeply believe that we have to go beyond production and marketing. We have to care about the country we operate in and its people," Koenig said at the donation ceremony. 
He also encouraged the flood victims to rebuild their homes.

Since the middle of last month, the Huaihe River Basin has been overflowing because of the continuous rainfall, resulting in the region's second largest flood since 1954. The floods have hit 15 cities and 69 towns in Anhui Province. Some 15 million people have been affected.

As one of the first multinational companies to contribute to the flood-relief efforts in Anhui, Bayer hopes other companies will follow its lead and make donations.

Bayer Group said its commitments to China's society and environment are as important as its business development.

The company also donated goods to flood victims in Hunan last year.

The company said economy, ecology and social responsibility are corporate policy objectives. For example, Anhui-based Bayer CropScience, supports farmers by offering training and teaching them about agro-chemicals. The company has organized 400 training seminars for farmers this year.

Last week, 20 Bayer young environmental envoys, all of them university students from Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing and Jinan, took part in an ecological summer camp organized by Bayer.

The students visited a waste landfill plant, a wastewater treatment plant and Bayer's CropScience farm in Hangzhou.

(China Daily July 31, 2007)

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