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Shenzhen to remove outdated boundary around economic zone

Xinhua | Updated: 2018-01-16 22:01

GUANGZHOU-- Southern Chinese metropolis Shenzhen will remove the barrier that was set up more than three decades ago to mark the boundary of the Shenzhen Special Economic Zone.

The State Council has approved the removal of the barbed wire fence that runs more than 80 kilometers around the core of Shenzhen, in a move to foster the city's integration.

In a guideline, the State Council urged the city government of Shenzhen and the provincial government of Guangdong to take the opportunity to optimize the city's layout and land use, improve its public transport and better protect the environment.

Analysts say the decision to scrap the boundary indicates further integration of Shenzhen and sends a positive message on regional development.

In 1980, Chinese authorities carved out a 327-square-kilometer special economic zone from Shenzhen and implemented preferential economic policies there in a bid to attract foreign investment and boost exports.

Two years later, a boundary line and several checkpoints were set up around the zone. Residents outside the zone had to apply for a special permit to enter the area.

However, the role of the boundary line faded over time as two sides of the border became more integrated.

In 2010, the central government expanded the special economic zone to the whole city, making the line exist in name only. Over the following years, all officers at checkpoints were diverted to other boundary units.

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