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Country improves river's navigation
(China Daily)
Updated: 2005-04-26 06:35

WUHAN: China will spend 10 billion yuan (US$1.2 billion) to improve the navigable capacity of the Yangtze River, the country's longest, over the next 17 years.

The money will be spent dredging the river's lower reaches, expanding the middle reaches, and extending the navigable course of the upper reaches, said Huang Qiang, director of the Yangtze River Shipping Affairs Bureau with the Ministry of Communications.

The lower reaches downstream of Nanjing, the capital of Jiangsu Province, will be dredged to help the navigation of 50,000 dead-weight-tonnage ocean-going ships in all weather conditions.

"A study of the impact of the Three Gorges Project on the navigation course on the middle reaches will be intensified," said Huang. He emphasized river sections on the middle reaches that do not allow navigation must be tackled.

Efforts will be made to extend the navigable course to Shuifu in Yunnan Province on the upper reaches.

Currently, only 15 per cent of the Yangtze's navigable capacity is being used, said Cai Qihua, director of the Yangtze River Committee with the Ministry of Water Resources.

According to Cai, the Yangtze River will ship 800 million tons a year by 2020.

(China Daily 04/26/2005 page3)

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