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Vice-premier encourages Yangtze River economic belt

Updated: Feb 7,2015 9:32 AM     Xinhua

Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli presides over a meeting on promoting the development of the Yangtze River economic belt in Beijing, capital of China, Feb 6, 2014. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING — Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli has urged development of the Yangtze River economic belt as it serves both regional and national economic growth.

Scientific planning and better coordination should be realized in developing the Yangtze River Economic Belt, which holds “strategic significance” in China’s regional economic landscape, said Zhang while presiding over a meeting on developing the belt, held in Beijing.

Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli presides over a meeting on promoting the development of the Yangtze River economic belt in Beijing, capital of China, Feb 6, 2014.[Photo/Xinhua]

Eleven provinces and municipalities are included in the Yangtze economic belt — Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Anhui, Jiangxi, Hubei, Hunan, Sichuan, Chongqing, Yunnan and Guizhou. The belt along China’s longest river covers more than 2 million square kilometers, one fifth of the country geographically.

In developing the Yangtze belt, the central government shall work closely with local governments, Zhang said, stressing on environmental protection.

The government must strike a balance between industrial transfer and environmental protection. Low-level and polluting projects should be avoided.

The development of Yangtze River Economic Belt should work together with China’s “Belt and Road” Initiative, which promises improved openness, Zhang said.

The “Belt and Road” refers to the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative created by China to better cooperate with countries in Asia, the Middle East and Europe.

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