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23 March 2009
The Government of the People's Republic of China today donated US$500,000 to the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund.
Environment Minister Peter Garrett officially acknowledged the generous gift on behalf of Australia, following a meeting with HE Mr Li Changchun, Member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee.
"This money will assist bushfire ravaged communities as they rebuild," Minister Garrett said.
"In accepting this gift, we acknowledge that China is all too familiar with the devastating impact of natural disasters.
"On May 12 last year, I -along with the rest of Australia -watched with growing horror as the enormity of the earthquake in China's Sichuan province unfolded: death and destruction on an unthinkable scale.
"Now, at a time where China is still rebuilding communities affected by the earthquake, they are reaching out to help Australians in need.
"We thank them wholeheartedly for this generosity."
Minister Garrett reminded Australians that donations can be made to the Red Cross Victorian Bushfire Relief Fund Appeal on 1800 811 700 or at www.redcross.org.au