BEIJING, June 20 (Xinhua) -- Rain-triggered floods that have swept south China since early this month have left 175 dead and 86 missing so far, the Ministry of Civil Affairs said Monday.
Four rounds of torrential rains that have battered the region since June 3 have caused floods and landslides in the Yangtze River's downstream provinces and several southwestern and southern provinces, according to a statement from the ministry.
The disasters have affected 36.57 million people and left 1.64 million displaced in 510 counties in the provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Fujian, Jiangxi, Hubei, Hunan, Guangdong, Sichuan, Guizhou and Yunnan, as well as the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and the municipality of Chongqing, the ministry said.
The floods have caused direct economic losses of 35 billion yuan (5.41 billion U.S. dollars), the ministry said.
The ministries of finance and civil affairs have allocated a total of 165 million yuan in living subsidies for individuals living in flood-hit areas, according to the ministry's statement.
In an urgent notice issued Monday, the National Disaster Reduction Commission and the Ministry of Civil Affairs urged several provinces to prepare for possible disasters, as a fresh round of rainfalls has been forecasted for the region next week.
Local government agencies have been asked to take advance measures to ensure the safety of people and property in their jurisdictions.
The notice also ordered the six disaster relief suppliers in the cities of Hefei, Fuzhou, Wuhan, Nanning, Chengdu and Kunming to ensure that their relief supplies are ready to be dispersed in a timely and safe manner to flood-prone provinces in case of a disaster.
Local civil affairs agencies have been urged to keep a close eye on the situation and report any possible disasters in a timely fashion, according to the notice.