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Xiongan set to be innovation








With an announcement made on April 1, Xiongan has risen from nowhere to become a household name in China overnight. The Xiongan New Area, in Hebei province, has been established in a move which is a “major historic and strategic (战略的) choice”, said a circular (通告) issued by the CPC Central Committee and the State Council.

The Xiongan New Area, about 100 kilometers southwest of downtown Beijing, sits at the center of the triangular (三角形的) area formed by Beijing, Tianjin, and Shijiazhuang. It will cover around 100 square km initially and will be expanded to 200 square km in the mid-term and about 2,000 square km in the long-term.

According to a report from the Press Trust of India, the establishment of the Xiongan New Area is “the latest step in China’s efforts to cure severe urban ills”. It’s hoped that the plans will help ease problems such as traffic congestion (拥堵) and air pollution in Beijing by reducing the capital’s population growth, which is approaching the target of 23 million for 2020. And by moving certain nonessential (非必需的) facilities, including manufacturing (制造业) and logistics (物流), to nearby regions, it may reduce some of Beijing’s “non-capital functions”.

Meanwhile, by advancing the coordinated (协调的) development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the Xiongan New Area could promote the rapid development of North China, Zhu Zhiqun, a political science professor at Bucknell University in Pennsylvania, US, told Xinhua News Agency.

And most important of all, the New Area will become a role model for other regions in the country as it aims to see green, creative, high-quality and high-end development, according to Zhu. It will attract talent to help build it into a “high ground” for innovation (创新) and a new science and technology city, He Lifeng, head of the National Development and Reform Commission, told Xinhua.

The New Area will also prioritize (优先处理) ecological protection and improve people’s well-being.

“The creation of the area is the right decision at the right time. Xiongan will be more than a mere replica (复制) of China’s past success. It will tell the tale of the future of a new city,” commented Xinhua.

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