China plans to use desalinated seawater to combat water shortages in coastal areas, planning to produce up to 800 million to one billion litres of water per day by 2010. A plan issued by the finance ministry and other agencies called for desalination plants to supply 16 to 24 per cent of water used in coastal areas. China is one of the world's driest countries and hundreds of cities suffer from water shortage in homes and industries. The population pressure of 1.3 billion people and surging economic growth has aggravated competition for water. Production is projected to rise to 2.5-3 billion litres per day by 2020.
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