Northwest China's Gansu Province has rebuilt houses for more than 200,000 rural families whose residences were destroyed by the May 12 earthquake, accounting for more than half of the reconstruction plan, provincial governor Xu Shousheng said Tuesday.
Another 85,000 homes are under reconstruction in the countryside, Xu told an economic work conference.
In addition, among 340,000 rural families whose houses were damaged, about 84 percent have been repaired and consolidated, he said.
"We have also built prefab homes and provided cotton-padded tents for the rural residents to enable them to pass the winter safely," he said.
"We are also stepping up efforts to rebuild infrastructure facilities, such as road, power, communication, water, school and hospital," he added.
The 8.0-magnitude quake centered in Wenchuan County in southwest China's Sichuan Province left more than 69,000 people dead, 374,000 injured, 18,000 missing and millions homeless.
More than 31,000 aftershocks have been reported since, with the strongest measuring 6.4 on the Richter scale.
In terms of the intensity and scope of destruction, the May 12 quake is believed to have surpassed the 7.8-magnitude quake in 1976 in Tangshan, northern Hebei Province, which claimed more than 240,000 lives.
Gansu, which neighbors Sichuan, also suffered great losses during the quake, with houses flattened and hundreds of people killed or injured in some areas.
(Xinhua News Agency December 24, 2008)