A State Council meeting on Friday, presided over by Premier Wen Jiabao, called on the nation to make greater efforts to ensure economic and social stability in the face of persistent bad weather.
It said overcast days with snow, rain and icy rain will continue to haunt most parts of southern China for several days. The disaster is still developing.
"The most difficult period is still not over yet. The situation remains grim," said the meeting.
It called on various localities and departments to take ample consideration of the difficulties and do more solid work to ensure economic and social stability and that people could celebrate the Spring Festival in a happy and peaceful mood.
According to the meeting, the top priorities at present are to keep road traffic moving, ensure power supply and guarantee people's daily lives are normal.
It called the snow havoc an event that would test the will, resolution and capability of leaders of various levels to deal with crisis and overcome difficulties.
(Xinhua News Agency February 2, 2008)