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BEIJING - Local governments should step up efforts to ensure market supplies in the drought-stricken southwestern areas, China's Ministry of Commerce said here Monday.
The first priority in these areas is to help drought victims and livestock to get access to drinking water. Local governments must work out effective drought-relief emergency plans, Fang Aiqing, China's assistant commerce minister, said in the statement.
Since last autumn, the southwest Chinese provinces of Yunnan, Sichuan and Guizhou, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Chongqing Municipality, were hit by a lingering drought, the worst one in decades.