As next month’s G20 summit draws near, rumours have been going around about just how much money the government has sunk into preparing Hangzhou for the global forum and the extent to which the city has gone to welcome international leaders.
These speculations reflect residents’ concerns about how the important event might cause disruption to their daily lives and routines.
Officials have come out to dispel the rumours that have been spreading about the summit, which will take place in Hangzhou, capital of eastern Zhejiang province, on September 4 and 5.
Here are seven myths that have been busted.
1. The government has budgeted a whopping 160 billion yuan (HK$187 billion) for the G20 summit in Hangzhou
This is not true. Officials say Hangzhou’s public budget this year is only some 123 billion yuan, so the actual amount set aside for the G20 event is definitely lower than that.
2. Each security officer at the G20 summit will receive a 100,000 yuan subsidy
Not true, say officials and police officers. It is security officers’ basic responsibility to ensure public safety, the officers say.
3. Restaurants, markets and even pharmacies will all be closed during the summit
Restaurant owners and shopkeepers say they have not received any orders for them to suspend business during the event.
4. All bus stations and highways will be closed, and trucks will be banned from entering Zhejiang province
Some special measures will indeed be implemented during the G20 to control the flow of traffic. But most bus stations and highways will remain open.
5. A truck driver carrying 20 unopened bottles of mineral water was made to open and take a sip from each bottle as all liquids must be checked during the summit
Officials say that while security officers will examine liquids during their checks, this will be done at the people’s convenience and in a manner that does not affect order.
6. Annual vehicle inspections will be suspended or delayed
No, according to Hangzhou’s traffic police. Annual vehicle inspections will go on as normal.
7. All delivery of parcels will come to a halt during the summit
This is not true. Officials say delivery of parcels will only be delayed as each parcel has to be more carefully inspected before it is delivered.