Polluting firms still in business
More than 10,000 township enterprises ordered to be closed in the past 11 years for serious pollution are still operating.
Wang Yuqing, deputy director of the State Environmental Protection Bureau, said that by the end of May, 64,083 polluting township factories had been closed.
They were shut after the State Council started its policy of regulating polluting industries in 1986, Xinhua (the New China News Agency) reported yesterday.
The closures represented 86 per cent of more than 74,000 township firms reported by local authorities as over-polluting.
But this meant about 10,400 small factories continued to operate even though they had been ordered to stop.
Mr Wang, addressing an anti-pollution seminar, admitted that only 18 of China's 31 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions had completed their task of closing all seriously polluting factories.
Those ordered to close covered 15 types of industry.
Meanwhile, Xinhua said Beijing had stepped up its fight against coastal pollution.
The bureau was drafting regulations covering fines and compensation involving sea pollution as well as considering a system of registrations and licences governing discharge of waste water into the sea.