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Water conservation funding doubled

China plans to double its investment in water conservation projects as cities face shortages and the worst drought in decades persists in northern China's key wheat-growing areas.

Chen Xiwen, a rural planning official, said the government will invest four trillion yuan (£383 billion) into water conservation over the next 10 years.

Minister of Water Resources Chen Lei said two-thirds of Chinese cities have trouble accessing water.

Every year the country is short of 40 billion cubic metres of water.

The announcement did not give details on the conservation projects.

It comes as northern China's wheat-growing region faces a severe drought, with little rain since October.

The dry weather could further pressure surging food prices.

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