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September 15, 2010

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Rules to tighten spill disclosure

LISTED Chinese companies in heavily polluting industries are required to inform investors of environmental accidents, the Ministry of Environmental Protection announced in a statement yesterday.

A draft guideline for listed companies to release environment-related information was published yesterday on the ministry's website to solicit public opinions.

According to the draft, listed companies in 16 heavily polluting industries, including thermal power, steel, cement and electrolytic aluminum, will have to release information about their pollutant emissions and management of environmental impact annually.

In addition, a listed company will have to inform investors of details of environmental accidents, including the date, location, casualties and damage, within a day of its occurrence, the draft rules said.

Any listed company that is punished, fined, suspended or shut down by the authorities for environmental reasons must inform investors of the violations, punishment and remedy measures within a day of receiving the penalty, according to the draft.

Individuals and organizations were invited to submit opinions on the draft rules by fax or e-mail by September 25. It did not say when the rules would be formally announced.

The rules were expected to force companies to publish environment information promptly and precisely, the statement said.


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