Around China

Updated: 2013-03-29 07:09

(China Daily)

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Mekong River anti-drug campaign

China, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand announced on Thursday that they will conduct a two-month joint campaign against drug-related crimes on the Mekong River starting on April 20. Representatives from the four nations attended a launch event held in Beijing on Thursday. Officers will aim to crack major trans-regional drug crimes, break major narcotics production chains and transport networks, and hunt drug-related fugitives.

More efforts urged on cemeteries

The nation lacks public cemeteries in urban areas and should make greater efforts to build more nonprofit cemeteries, according to a report published by the Ministry of Civil Affairs and the Social Sciences Academic Press on Thursday. Problems at public cemeteries include lack of a specific budget, poor laws and operational and maintenance difficulties, the report said.

Tougher rule after disputed policies

The commerce market watchdog on Thursday pledged to strengthen regulations concerning infringements of customer's rights, such as the adoption of differentiating repair policies by Apple. The State Administration for Industry and Commerce said it has issued a notice asking local industry and commerce authorities to enhance legal supervision over Apple's imparity clauses in its warranty policies.

Government denies gas price hike

China's top economic planner on Wednesday denied rumors of a substantial rise in natural gas prices after a news report caused residents in some cities to stand in long lines to buy fuel. The news is groundless and false, said a pricing official with the National Development and Reform Commission. China Business Times reported that gas prices will be raised by some 30 percent to about 3.5 yuan (56 cents) per cubic meter in April.

Suspect returned from Japan

A man suspected of swindling has been arrested and sent back to China after joint efforts by Japanese and Chinese police, the Ministry of Public Security said. Sunmuziyang, formerly known as Li Qi, a 45-year-old Chinese, illegally obtained hundreds of millions of yuan in China in 2010 and 2011, claiming to be raising funds to buy a company, before fleeing to Japan, the ministry said.

Capital city may increase taxi fares

Beijing may increase taxi fares in April, according to media reports on Thursday. China National Radio, citing an unnamed source, said the flag-drop charge will rise from 10 to 15 yuan ($1.6 to $2.4). Meanwhile, cabbies will charge 2.40 yuan a km after the first 3 km, up from 2 yuan. The city government has not confirmed the change, which was widely reported on major media portals, including Xinhua News Agency.

Sub to conduct trial missions

The manned submersible Jiaolong is to conduct trial scientific missions between June and September, the State Oceanic Administration announced on Thursday. The four-month mission, including research in the South China Sea and the northeast Pacific Ocean, marks the start of a five-year trial period for Jiaolong before it starts regular operations.


16 pupils injuredin stampede

Sixteen primary school students were injured in a stampede caused by an escalator failure in Xi'an, Shaanxi province, on Thursday, according to China News Service. The students, aged 9 to 12, were taking an escalator during a visit to the Qujiang Aquarium, an activity organized by their school, the Primary School Affiliated to Northwestern Polytechnical University, when the accident occurred. All of the students were rushed to a local hospital. Two were hospitalized and the rest have been discharged, according to a doctor at the hospital.


Hao Peng named acting governor

Hao Peng was appointed acting governor of Qinghai province on Thursday at the second meeting of the Standing Committee of the 12th provincial people's congress. Hao, 53, served as deputy Party chief of the Tibet autonomous region for more than six years. The resignation of former governor Luo Huining, now Qinghai Party chief, was approved.


Chen Wu appointed acting chairman

Chen Wu was appointed acting chairman of the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region on Thursday. The appointment was made at a meeting of the standing committee of the regional people's congress, the local legislative body. The resignation of former chairman Ma Biao was also approved at the meeting. Chen, born in November 1954, has served as vice-chairman of Guangxi and Party chief of Nanning.


Fire leaves 5 dead, 5 others injured

A fire that broke out on Thursday morning in a residential building in Maoming, Guangdong province, has left five dead and five others injured. Firefighters said three women and two men living on the fourth and fifth floors of the building in Dianbai county suffocated. Five people suffered injuries and were sent to a hospital.


Top adviser urgesdevelopment

Top political adviser Yu Zhengsheng called for concentrated efforts to push forward scientific development in Guizhou province during a recent tour of the province. Yu asked local authorities to take advantage of State strategies to support development in west China, advance economic restructuring, step up infrastructure building and protect the environment to achieve sustainable growth and improve the well-being of local people.

China Daily-Xinhua