IN BRIEF (Page 2)

Updated: 2011-08-26 08:01

(China Daily)

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Beijing

New Party chief named in Tibet

Chen Quanguo has been appointed secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) committee of the Tibet autonomous region, the CPC Central Committee announced on Thursday.

Zhang Qingli, Chen's predecessor, will be moved to another position, the CPC Central Committee said in a statement.

In addition, Qin Guangrong has been appointed secretary of Yunnan provincial committee of the CPC, replacing Bai Enpei, according to the statement.

Luo Baoming has been appointed secretary of South China's Hainan provincial committee of the CPC, replacing Wei Liucheng.

Healthcare spending surges

The Chinese government spent more than 245 billion yuan ($38 billion) on healthcare in the first half of this year, representing an increase of 61 percent year-on-year, China's top legislature heard on Thursday.

According to a report by Finance Minister Xie Xuren, the central government spent 76 billion yuan on improvements to the country's new rural cooperative medical system, as well as its urban basic medical insurance system.

Xie said that China's basic medical care system for urban and rural residents currently covers 1.28 billion people, or more than 90 percent of the population.

Heilongjiang

Three dead in tech mall fire

Three people were killed Thursday afternoon after a computer and electronics mall caught fire in downtown Harbin, capital city of the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, firefighters said.

Witnesses said the fire broke out at around 2 pm and spread quickly through the top floor of the six-floor Nantong Computer Mall, which houses shops and booths selling electronic products and parts as well as many logistics companies, killing three construction workers working on the top floor.

The blaze was put out at around 3 pm. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Guangdong

Smoke kills sleeping family

Six people were killed after a fire engulfed a dessert shop on Thursday in Guangdong province, said local authorities.

The blaze ripped through the first floor of the three-story building where the victims were sleeping in the city of Taishan, said a government spokesman.

An initial investigation found the victims, including the owner of the shop and five of his family members, had suffocated, said the spokesman.

China Daily - Xinhua

(China Daily 08/26/2011 page2)