China to Set-up More Public Sports Facilities
China’s minister of the General Administration of Sport, Liu Peng, vowed to provide more public sports facilities in the next five years. Liu reveals that their goal is to raise people’s interests toward sports, to improve people’s physical condition and to develop public sports facilities in more cities and countries.
As a rising sports nation, China has achieved great success in the past five years wherein Chinese athletes have won 634 world championship titles and set 88 worlds records. At the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, China claimed a record high 51 gold medals, leading the gold medal tally for the first time.
According to Liu, those achievements are motivating more people to join sports thereby urging the administration to provide more public sports facilities. The administration’s 12th Five-Year Plan is an important stage for China’s development into a real sports powerhouse.
“Promoting sports among common people in order to help them improve their physical condition is always the most important task of China’s sports,” said Liu. “Those gold medals won by athletes play a significant role in uniting people and arousing their enthusiasm toward sports.” He added.
“According to my understanding, a real sports powerhouse requires that people’s awareness of sports – and their physical abilities – reach the level of those in developed countries, and the country should provide advanced public sports services. We still have to work harder to reach that.”
During the last five years, basic sports facilities have been set up in some 200,000 villages across China, about double the original goal set in the last Five-Year Plan. There are more than one million sports venues throughout the country.
To further promote sports, the State Council passed the Regulations on National Fitness in 2009, the first national regulations to stipulate that citizens have the right to participate in national fitness activities. Also, the date of the opening ceremony for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Aug 8, was named National Fitness Day.