Water pipe plans revealed

PUBLISHED : Monday, 30 September, 1996, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 30 September, 1996, 12:00am

Chinese officials have revealed plans to supply water to nearby Taiwanese islands despite Taipei's rejection of the offer.

Officials from Fujian province and Xiamen city yesterday announced plans to transport cheap drinking water to Taiwan-controlled Quemoy.

The mainlanders have proposed using water tankers or constructing an underwater pipeline to transport the water.

Construction of a pipeline, which would link Quemoy with Xiamen city, would take about two years, the manager of the city's water supply company, Ye Ying-fei, said.

The other proposal under consideration is the use of tankers to transport more than 1,000 tonnes of water to Quemoy each day.

Each consignment would take about two hours, Mr Ye said.

The mainland officials are also looking into technical details, including charges and management arrangements, if their proposals go ahead.

The announcement came despite President Lee Teng-hui's rejection of the suggestions.

Mr Lee put forward the construction of desalination plants as an alternative to the pipeline.

There are concerns within the Taiwanese Government that the proposals offered by Fujian are a propaganda exercise - an attempt by Beijing to subvert the island's people through the 'United Water Front'.