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Crackdown on toy cash

CHINA'S anti-illegal publications authorities are ordering a nationwide crackdown on "toy money" with cartoon pictures mainly sold to children at book stores or stands near schools, The Beijing News reported yesterday.

The toy-like "money," about the same size and pattern as real Chinese bank notes, features cartoon pictures familiar to children, such as Winnie the Pooh, and is selling well in shops near schools across China.

The Chongqing Economic Times reported that the "money" was being sold at 0.25 yuan (3 US cents) per piece in Chongqing Municipality. The face value of the "money" corresponds to all the real bills in circulation.

Similar "toy money" is also on sale in Tianjin Municipality and Jiangsu and Sichuan provinces, local media reported this week.

The National Anti-Pornography and Anti-Illegal Publications Office on Friday ordered its branches across the country to confiscate the toy cash.

According to China's regulation on the usage of bank note patterns, any use of bank note pattern needs approval from the central bank.

The office said it would also search for the sources of these products, punish the makers and vendors, and turn those suspected of crimes over to police.

Tip-offs on the office's public hotline claim that some of the products are made in Yiwu, Zhejiang Province, which has made its name by producing and trading items such as earrings and other accessories.


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