Harsh winter storms kill 107 people in China

2008-02-13 00:41:49 Xinhua English

BEIJING, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Disasters caused by prolonged low temperatures, icy rains and heavy snows in the southern part of China in the past month killed a total of 107 people and left 8 others missing by Tuesday, said Li Xueju, minister of civil affairs, here Wednesday.

Direct economic losses were estimated at 111.1 billion yuan (about 15.3 billion U.S. dollars), he said.

BEIJING, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- The extreme weather that hit China in recent weeks has damaged 18.6 million hectares of forest in 19 snow-afflicted provincial regions, the State Forestry Administration announced here Wednesday.

The total included 6.83 million ha of bamboo, 11.62 million ha of woods and 15,333 ha of saplings, according to the administration. Full story

BEIJING, Feb. 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese insurance firms had paid out more than one billion yuan (138.8 million U.S. dollars) on claims stemming from the severe wintry weather in south and central China, but millions more may yet be paid, according to insurance regulator.

Insurance companies nationwide have received 799,700 compensation cases, 463,000 cases of them from the worst-hit areas of Hunan, Hubei, Guizhou, Guangxi and Anhui, said the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC) in a bulletin.