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Giving everyone a lift?

Chile gets a little help from China

The drama that saw 33 Chilean miners rescued last week has aroused as much interest in China as elsewhere. Adding to the feelgood brew, reports the New York Times, was the news that China had contributed to the operation’s success. The People’s Daily was quick to boast that “a heavy crane employed on the scene was made in China” – even though it seems that the Sany SCC4000 was only used in rehearsals, rather than the actual rescue. However, in a country that sees an average of 2,631 miners die in accidents each year, cynicism rapidly took root online. One blogger wrote on the Sina website that “we would never see anything like that in China” and the Financial Times noted that other contributors “poured scorn on the government for failing to show the same respect for life as the Chilean authorities.”

Sure enough, a mining explosion in Henan last weekend saw miners trapped underground. The prospects of their successful rescue look “dim”, the FT thought. Sadly, this proved correct. All 37 miners were reported as dead at the beginning of the week.


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