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Coal-rich region looks to 'clouds' for growth

By Wang Hao, Chen Jia and Yang Fang | China Daily | Updated: 2013-02-07 14:49

Coal-rich region looks to 'clouds' for growth

A China Telecom cloud-computing center under construction in January in a suburb of Hohhot, the Inner Mongolia autonomous region.[Photo/China Daily]

The Inner Mongolia autonomous region, China's biggest coal producer, is aiming to transform its growth model through the construction of the country's largest cloud-computing industry base, report Wang Hao, Chen Jia and Yang Fang in Hohhot

Endless grassland and beautiful clouds are the iconic scenes of the Inner Mongolia autonomous region in northern China. Now a new kind of "cloud" is attracting more attention.

Hohhot, the regional capital, is emerging as the country's most important cloud-computing center.

After driving eastward half an hour from downtown Hohhot, wide new plots of land ready for large construction projects can be seen.

With the temperature lower than -10 C in the middle of winter, snow lies thick on the ground.

Construction workers had left the building site and returned home two weeks before the Spring Festival, leaving a large unfinished five-story building.

From outside, looking at the French windows, the building looks similar to other grandiose assembly halls in China.

"Here may be the heart of China's largest e-commerce company Alibaba in the future," said Hao Lianzeng, head of the Hongsheng Industrial Park, pointing to the new building.

The "heart" which Hao referred to is the cloud-computing center formed by server clusters being constructed by China Unicom, one of the three major telecom operators in China.

Coal-rich region looks to 'clouds' for growth

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