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Capital continues to move industries from downtown

Updated: Jul 17,2015 7:57 AM     China Daily

Beijing will prohibit 79 percent of businesses categorized as industries in the six downtown districts and relocate four noncapital functions to suburban Tongzhou district, the municipality’s Development and Reform Commission said.

Lu Yan, director of the commission, said at a news conference on July 16 that the four affected noncapital functions are manufacturing, wholesale markets, government offices and some educational and medical institutions.

By 2017, the city expects to have removed 1,200 polluting enterprises. By last year, 680 enterprises had been moved out. Another 185 moved out in the first half of this year.

More than 80 industrial programs have been relocated to Hebei province at a cost of more than 120 billion yuan ($19.3 billion).

Lu said another goal is to relieve congestion in the capital’s central area.

“The number of people seeking medical treatment in the city’s 88 Grade III hospitals, which are the rated best, exceeds 200 million a year,” Lu said. “In some top hospitals, such as Children’s Hospital and Tiantan Hospital, more than 70 percent of the patients are from outside Beijing. About 56 percent come from neighboring provinces, including 25 percent from Hebei.”

Congestion also results from the cluster of wholesale markets, Lu said. Such markets “also occupy large areas and attract lots of people. The nine markets near the Beijing Zoo occupy more than 300,000 square meters and have more than 30,000 workers and 100,000 visitors at peak hours.

“Those markets and medical institutions convey typical noncapital functions and cause congestion.”

Industries prohibited or limited in Beijing will increase from 32 percent of those in the category to 55 percent, with even stricter prohibitions in the six downtown districts, where 79 percent of such industries will be barred.

Liu Bozheng, deputy director of the Development and Reform Commission, said timetables for some colleges and medical institutions to relocate have been made to better allocate public resources and benefit people.

Liu also said that the country’s 13th Five Year Plan (2016-2020) will address Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei province as a whole, a first for the plans.