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V. Premier urges economic restructuring in NE China
Updated: 2009-09-02 23:28

CHANGCHUN: Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang Wednesday said the country's old industrial base should coordinate economic growth and industrial restructuring to revitalize regional development.

During an inspection tour in northeastern Jilin Province on Monday and Tuesday, Li urged stepping up innovation, pushing forward industrial restructuring, and improving people's lives, in order to achieve sound economic and social development.

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During an inspection of the First Automobile Works, Li encouraged the pioneering auto maker to innovate based on its own technology, in order enliven the enterprise.

Li also visited several other enterprises, including the Jilin Aodong Medicine Industry Group Co., Ltd., a leading pharmaceutical company, and encouraged firms to diversify their product mix to meet various demands and explore new markets.

Li also visited shanty towns in Yanbian city where tens of thousands of forestry workers live. He urged local government to speed up the building of low-income housing and the renovation of the shanty towns, to rehouse low-income workers who deserved better conditions.

China has 1.7 million forestry workers, of whom 960,000 live in shanty towns.

China is aiming to provide proper housing for 7.5 million low-income urban households and 2.4 million households of coal mine, reclamation area and forest zone workers living in shanty towns within three years, Premier Wen Jiabao said in March.

The central government has pledged to allocate 49.3 billion yuan (US$7.25 billion) from the central budget to finance housing projects in 2009 alone.