Xi urges improvement in ability to deal with natural disasters

Xinhua
Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday called for efforts to improve the country's ability to safeguard against natural disasters.
Xinhua

Chinese President Xi Jinping yesterday called for efforts to improve the country’s ability to safeguard against natural disasters, and fully launch the planning and construction of the Sichuan-Tibet railway.

Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the remarks at the third meeting of the Central Committee for Financial and Economic Affairs, which he also heads.

“As a stronger capability of safeguarding against natural disasters concerns the economy and people’s livelihood, China will set up an efficient and scientific system and improve the capability of the whole society in a bid to protect people’s lives and property and national security,” Xi said when addressing the meeting.

He also highlighted the Sichuan-Tibet railway, saying it was of profound significance for the country’s long-term stability and the development of Tibet.

As one of the most disaster-prone countries in the world, China has attached great importance to the matter and made remarkable progress, the meeting said. But its overall capability to respond to such extreme conditions is still relatively weak, and more should be done.

To fix the short link, China will work to build a coordinated disaster-responding system, adopt a people-centered approach, give priority to the environment, try its best to minimize the aftermath, propel reforms and innovation to modernize its capability, and continue international cooperation, according to the meeting.

A raft of major projects will be advanced, including ecological restoration of forest, grassland and rivers, coastal protection such as building ecological seawalls, housing reinforcement projects in earthquake-prone areas, flood control and drought relief, relocation of residents in disaster-hit places, construction of emergency centers, natural disaster monitoring and early warning, and the modernization of rescue technology and equipment.

The meeting also emphasized the planning and construction of the Sichuan-Tibet railway, as it will promote ethnic solidarity, safeguard national unity and consolidate the stability of the frontier, as well as bolster Tibet’s economic and social development.

China will push forward the project at a high starting point, and pursue high standards and quality, the meeting said, stressing scientific planning, technical support, ecological protection, safety and reliability.

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