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'Shanxi crucial in Beijing's fight against smog'

By Wang Zhenghua (chinadaily.com.cn)

Updated: 2015-03-06 17:42:00


Beijing will not be able to tackle its pollution problem if Shanxi province in north China is not integrated into a coordinated development network that centers on Beijing, Wang Rulin, Shanxi's Party chief, said on Thursday.

During a group discussion held during the ongoing "two sessions", Wang expressed the demand of integrating Shanxi, which lies to the west of Hebei province, into the coordinated development strategy of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei province, the Southern Metropolis Daily reported on Friday.

"Shanxi is geographically located at where the wind to Beijing blows from," he was quoted as saying. "If Shanxi is not included, it is unrealistic to address Beijing’s pollution problems."

President Xi Jinping called for the integrated and coordinated development of Beijing and the two neighboring provincial areas last February.

But Wang said combining Shanxi in the coordinated development plan not only benefits Shanxi, but also is of great strategic significance for the nation's development.

Shanxi supplies a huge share of vegetables and dairy products to Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei. "We have premium-quality produce which is supplied to the three regions."

He also said that Shanxi and Inner Mongolia, which is geographically located in the north of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei area, are both regions that churn out a large amount of coal. Under the great pressure of improving the environment, they should be integrated into the coordinated development network, he added.