Apart from loss of life, the continuing floods in China have caused millions of dollars in economic damage and serious disruptions to world supply chains. State media said Tuesday direct economic losses were expected to exceed $200 million.
Shipping companies are concerned over the continued flooding in the region. Tim Huxley, the CEO of Mandarin Shipping, said the floods in China had dealt a blow to the worldwide supply chain.
Huxley said the supply of goods such as wheat and coal had been affected by the flooding in landlocked provinces. He said the floods made roads and railways unusable - which will also directly affect shipping. Huxley said Henan was the country's "breadbasket" and the source of millions of tons of wheat each year.
China officials expect heavy rain to continue in large parts of the country after super typhoon In-fa made landfall over the weekend. The typhoon brought with its winds of up to 65 miles per hour and massive torrential downpours. Weather officials said nearly 4 inches of rain were dropped across Shanghai in just two days.
The heavy rain caused floods that destroyed hundreds of farmlands across its path. Local officials said power remained out in many districts along the coast.
"Rainwater has damaged more than 215,200 hectares of crops, causing a direct economic loss of about 1.22 billion yuan. Henan is one of China's major crop production regions and contributed 10% of the country's total harvests," a Xinhua News Agency report said.
While In-fa's strength is expected to decrease after encountering buildings, forests and tall mountains, the storm is still expected to bring heavy rain to inland areas. The additional rain could completely destroy some farmlands that survived last week's heavy floods.
Officials said the economic damage could significantly increase as the storm makes its way inland. Dozens of ports in one of the world's busiest shipping regions have already been shut down. China Railway said it had to cancel more than 100 trains scheduled to travel through the path of the storm. More than 90% of flights from airports in Hangzhou and neighboring provinces were canceled.
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