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China debt crunch

China banks throw $460bn credit lifeline to real estate sector

Fresh aid suggests Xi Jinping's focus is on stabilizing economy

Chinese state-owned banks are offering a massive amount of credit to real estate companies. (Photo by Noriyuki Doi)

SHANGHAI -- Chinese banks are opening more than 3 trillion yuan ($431 billion) in lines of credit for cash-strapped real estate companies, suggesting a temporary emphasis on stabilizing the economy over cutting the industry's debt.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the nation's largest state-owned bank, has announced plans for 655 billion yuan in credit lines for 12 borrowers, including top housing company Country Garden Holdings.

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