China vows to destroy, not relocate, polluting plants

Reuters News
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Posted: Mar 08, 2012 3:48 AM

BEIJING (Reuters) - China will draw up a blacklist of obsolete polluting factories that must be destroyed into "iron scraps" to avoid being relocated to other provinces or even neighboring countries, China's industry minister said on Thursday.

As many Chinese coastal regions turn against dirty factories, many low-end manufactures and plants are relocating to western and central regions, poisoning once fertile land and clear running rivers.

Minister Miao Wei told national radio that some neighboring countries were also worried about pollution from no-longer-wanted facilities being imported from coastal China.

"We will draft a guideline list," Miao said. "All equipment and facilities of plants (on the list) must not relocate -- they must be destroyed totally into steel and iron scraps."

China has launched a series of measures, including cutting bank credit, to phase out polluting factories. Costal provinces like Guangdong are particularly keen to kick out such plants to save land, water and even manpower for cleaner and higher value-adding producers.

But central and western provinces, desperate to boost their economies and tax revenues, often turn a blind eye, even rolling out the red carpet for such plants.

(Reporting by Zhou Xin and Kevin Yao; Editing by Nick Macfie)