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China has released a guideline on the safe development of cities, after a series of major accidents in recent years that have caused casualties and huge property losses.
The country must uphold the vision of people-centered development and never seek development at the cost of safety, according to a guideline from the general offices of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council.
By 2020, China aims to make "noticeable progress" in safe urban development, and create a number of demonstration cities in line with the objectives of becoming a moderately prosperous society in all respects, the guideline said.
By 2035, the country should put in place an improved system for safe urban development and create safe cities in line with the requirements for basically realizing socialist modernization, it added.
With the acceleration of China"s urbanization, the populations, functions and sizes of cities have been expanding rapidly, but safety hazards are also on the rise.
At the end of 2016, permanent urban residents made up 57.3 percent of the population, up from 52.5 percent in 2012, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
The country must improve its ability to ensure urban safety and prevent major accidents to create a sound environment, according to the guideline released on Sunday. The notion of safe development should be reflected in city plans, including those for social and economic development, and disaster prevention and relief.
For residential, commercial and industrial areas and port areas, safety must be the prerequisite in determining their layouts, the guideline said.
Laws, regulations and standards related to safety should be improved to raise the country"s ability to ensure the safe functioning of urban facilities, it said, adding that "safety must be put first in urban infrastructure construction".
China should push forward the construction of multifunctional underground pipeline corridors in an orderly manner, and reinforce the safety supervision of the construction and operation of transport, water, drainage, heating, natural gas and other infrastructure projects.
Safety risk controls should also be strengthened by thoroughly identifying urban risks, building a risk information management platform, and drawing a map for the distribution of such risks.
The screening and overhaul of urban safety hazards will be standardized by improving the mechanism for identifying, registering and supervising major sources of dangers, the guideline said.
It added that emergency management and rescue capabilities will be reinforced, as well as detailed measures on raising the country"s safety supervision efficiency, making cities better at ensuring safety and improving leadership and coordination.