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Li gives residents keys to 'new life'

Updated: 2015-02-16 08:23
By Zhao Yinan in Guiyang (China Daily)

Li gives residents keys to 'new life'

Premier Li Keqiang, center, makes instant noodles for migrant workers at a reception center in Liping county, Guizhou province, Feb 14, 2015. [Photo/Sina Weibo]

Premier fulfills promise to provide decent homes for former occupants of shantytown

The set of keys that Xiao Wenmei received from Premier Li Keqiang opens up not only her new apartment but her future.

Li visited the newly finished Yu'an community in Guiyang, Guizhou province, and helped distribute keys to the new apartments on Saturday.

"Have you seen your new apartment?" Li asked as he handed keys to Xiao. "It is not only the key to your home but also to your new life."

He then posted a fu character, a traditional Chinese paper cutting for Spring Festival, at the community's main office.

"A new community is not only about building new houses but also about people's new lives, so they can live in a comfortable and safe environment," he said.

Xiao, 32, was still excited as she recalled the moment she received the keys from the premier. She said her family is busy preparing to move into the new apartment before Chinese New Year's Eve "as a good start of the year".

She has lived with her husband and kids in a nearby village, where houses leaked and roads became muddy during rainstorms. The local government invested 3 billion yuan ($481 million) in 2009 to build 8,500 apartments for 5,000 households in Xiao's community.

Xiao's family was allotted two apartments, about 300 square meters, as were some other families.

"We'll move into one apartment and rent the other out," she said. "A new house is like a big dream for my family."

The Chinese government has counted heavily on the rebuilding of urban shantytowns to drive domestic demand and improve people's living conditions.

As of 2013, China has provided replacement housing for 2.18 million households from shantytown areas and embarked on projects to address another 3.23 million households - 6 percent more than originally planned.

China Development Bank Corp received a three-year Pledged Supplementary Lending facility of 1 trillion yuan from the People's Bank of China. The money will be allocated to the housing finance department of the nation's largest state-policy-related lender.

Li appointed his former subordinate, Chen Zhenggao, the former governor of Liaoning province, as minister of Housing and Urban-Rural Development in June. Chen is known for the rebuilding of shantytowns in Liaoning during his term in the northeastern province.


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