Oil and gas pipelines in China will be protected against theft, damage and construction encroachment under a draft law proposed by the State Council.
The draft law was sent to the National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee for first reading yesterday.
The law is to "protect oil and gas pipelines, maintain transportation safety and public safety and safeguard the national resource supply."
The State Council in 1989 released Regulations on Oil and Gas Pipelines, which has been effective until now.
However, with demand for oil and gas increasing rapidly and new problems arising in the protection of pipelines, China urgently needed a special law, said Cao Kangtai, director of Legislative Affairs Office of the State Council.
Rapid urbanization has resulted in the reckless construction of buildings and roads within buffer areas for the pipelines in recent years, making access to the pipelines, as well as their protection, increasingly difficult, Cao said.
The pipelines must be constructed clear of railways, roads and waterways, to avoid conflict and damage, Cao said.