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Guangdong to Be powered by electricity from West China


Construction of nine power generation and transmission projects started Sunday in western China for providing electricity to Guangdong Province in the south.

These projects are part of China's plan to turn the rich water and coal resources in the economically backward western region into electricity to support economic development in eastern and southern coastal areas.

The nine projects, which will cost 35.37 billion yuan (US$4.26 billion), are meant for power consumption in energy- thirsty Guangdong, one of China's most dynamic economic powerhouses.

Under China's 10th Five-Year Plan for 2001-2005, facilities capable of providing Guangdong with an additional 10 million kilowatts of electricity will be built. Construction of the first group of seven projects for the purpose began in November last year. Sending electricity from western China to the coastal region, is one of the major projects for China's strategy to develop the western region.

The other key projects include a natural gas pipeline from west to east, the south-north water diversion project and the Qinghai-Tibet railway. Shanghai, Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Beijing, Tianjin and Tangshan will also benefit from the power-transmission project.

Of the nine projects under construction from Sunday, six are power-generating projects with five in Guizhou and one in Hunan. They will have a combined generating capacity of 4.4 million kilowatts. The three others are power transmission projects, two from Guizhou and one from the world's largest hydropower project at the Three Gorges.

Zhuang Guobao, vice minister in charge of the State Development Planning Commission, said Sunday the construction of the second group of the power projects signifies that China has achieved substantial progress in the development of the western region.

Turning the rich resources in the west into electricity will help boost local economic development, and the sending electricity to the coastal areas to meet the great local demand will accelerate development there. This will promote the sustainable development of the Chinese economy and benefit both western and eastern China, Zhang said.

It is learned that government departments concerned are busy preparing for the launch of other follow-up project for the west- east power supply strategy.


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