RR RUEHCN RUEHGH
DE RUEHGZ #7359 1630844
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 120844Z JUN 06
FM AMCONSUL GUANGZHOU
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 0697
INFO RUEHOO/CHINA POSTS COLLECTIVE
UNCLAS GUANGZHOU 017359
STATE FOR USAID/OFDA/WASHINGTON for DCHA/OFDA BANGKOK for USAID
E.O. 12958: N/A TAGS: EAID CASC ECON PGOV KLTN SENV CH SUBJECT: FLOODS KILL DOZENS IN SOUTH CHINA, FORCE HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS TO EVACUATE
1. (U) Summary. Flooding in Fujian and Guangdong has killed 55 people and forced 472,000 to evacuate. In Fujian, the hardest hit province, one source claims 41 people have died, while more than 356,000 have been evacuated. Economic losses in Fujian already near USD 30 billion. Meanwhile, no relief is in sight, as meteorologists expect more rains to lash Fujian. There are no reports of affected AmCits. End summary.
2. (U) Heavy rains in Fujian and Guangdong provinces have caused some of the worst flooding in three decades. The flooding has affected at least three million residents across the provinces of Fujian, Guangdong and Guizhou. At least 55 people have been killed, 12 people are missing and a further 472,000 people have been evacuated.
Fujian takes the biggest hit
3. (U) Fujian province is the hardest hit, although casualty statistics vary. One source claims 41 people had died in Fujian, while another report lists only 25 dead. Some 356,200 people have been evacuated, and estimated economic losses in the province reach at least RMB 3.15 billion (more than USD 29 billion). Local officials stated that approximately 100,000 hectares of farmland are under water, 28,400 buildings have collapsed and more than 700 mining operations have been suspended.
4. (U) According to the local press, more than 7,000 soldiers and policemen have been sent to assist with evacuations, rescues and flood control. Meanwhile, the provincial and municipal governments in the affected regions have allocated a total of RMB 5.5 million (USD 687,500) to a disaster relief fund.
5. (U) Officials warned that no relief appears to be in sight for the storm-battered provinces. In Fujian, the Provincial Meteorological Bureau states that more heavy rainstorms are expected throughout June, and they expect a 20 percent higher rainfall than June of last year.
6. (U) According to officials at the Meizhou and Fujian Foreign Affairs Offices, no Americans have been affected by the storms. To the best of their knowledge, all casualties were local. Officials promised to notify ConGen Guangzhou if they received any information of Americans among the victims.