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China Opens Western Borders to Investors

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BEIJING, China (9 March 2000)–China is counting on its western regions to catalyze economic growth in the coming years, according to a recent Associated Press report. The Chinese government is doing its best to attract foreign investors into one of the country’s poorest regions. Economic developments are currently concentrated in the country’s eastern provinces. But […]

BEIJING, China (9 March 2000)–China is counting on its western regions to catalyze economic growth in the coming years, according to a recent Associated Press report. The Chinese government is doing its best to attract foreign investors into one of the country’s poorest regions.
Economic developments are currently concentrated in the country’s eastern provinces. But Chinese officials are afraid that the gap between the wealthy east and the destitute west is becoming too large. This could lead to social unrest and hamper economic growth, they claim.
To catalyze growth in the west huge investment in infrastructure is needed. It remains a question how China will be able to interest foreigners in this out-of-the-way region. Another point of concern is the west’s lack of an educated workforce.
According to the Chinese officials, its western provinces boast of a huge supply of fossil fuels such as gas, oil and natural minerals. Moreover, the consumer market is huge: of China’s 1.254 billion citizens, 90% live in the west. (JW)

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