China allocates 14.5 bln USD to help needy groups

BEIJING: China’s central budget sets aside over 90 billion yuan (14.5 bln U.S. dollars) to help needy families and individuals in 2015, an official statement said on Wednesday.

More should be done to ensure the subsistence of needy groups, according to a statement released after a State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang.

According to the statement, carried by state-run news agency Xinhua, the government will invest more so that recipients get more assistance, such as basic living allowances.

The government also plans medical aid for patients with severe illnesses, and to offer temporary assistance to needy families facing emergencies.

The government will work on inter-department coordination to deliver social assistance and coordinate assistance with private charities. Specific measures for procurement of social assistance services will give a greater role to social workers and volunteers and mobilize enterprises, especially central government-owned enterprises, to practice social assistance.

The statement also said 7.1 billion yuan (1.1 billion U.S. dollars) has been earmarked as provisional living allowances for natural disaster victims to weather the cold winter, urging governments at all levels to hand the aid over to the people, in time and in full.