World

Beijing bans winter construction

BEIJING: China will suspend construction of major public projects in its capital, Beijing, this winter to improve the city's notorious air quality, official media said yesterday, citing the Municipal Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development.

All construction of road and water projects, as well as demolition of housing, will be banned from Nov 15 to March 15 within the city's six major districts and surrounding suburbs, said the Xinhua report.

The period spans the four months when heating is supplied to the city's housing and other buildings.

China is in the fourth year of a "war on pollution" designed to reverse the damage done by decades of untrammelled economic growth and allay concerns that hazardous smog and widespread water and soil contamination are causing hundreds of thousands of early deaths every year.

Beijing has promised to impose tough industrial and traffic curbs across the north of the country this winter to meet key smog targets.

Last year, the city experienced near record-high smog in January and February, which the government blamed on "unfavourable weather conditions". - REUTERS

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