Renovation of three major cultural heritage sites in Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, is expected to be completed this year, according to a source at the regional cultural relics administration.
The central government of China has allocated 333 million yuan (about 46 million U.S. dollars) to repair the Potala Palace, NorbuLingka and the Sakya Monastery. Work began in 2002.
"We have used 77 percent of the total project investment, or 256.72 million yuan," said Nima Cering, director of the Tibet Cultural Relics Administration.
"The projects were supposed to be completed in 2007," she said." However, due to the complexity of the repair work and adverse weather in Tibet, the duration of the projects has been prolonged. But we will strive to conclude the repair work before the end of this year."
The Potala Palace, built in the 7th century, is on the world cultural heritage list. Norbu Lingka, which means "treasure park" in the Tibetan language, was the summer palace of the Dalai Lama. Sagya Monastery houses numerous classical books on Buddhism and precious paintings.