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Taiwan-funded hospital planned in Dongguan
By Zheng Caixiong (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-08-20 01:56

Building of the first mainland Taiwan-funded hospital is about to begin in the Pearl River Delta city of Dongguan in South China's Guangdong Province.

The new hospital, which will cost more than US$70 million, will be completely different from other hospitals in the city, according to an official from the Dongguan Bureau of Public Health Thursday.

It will be operated and managed by a shareholding hospital management company, the official said.

The company will conduct a world-wide search for a president in the future.

Candidates do not have to be Chinese.

The new hospital is expected to attract medical experts, doctors and management personnel from around the world.

The hospital also plans to invest more than 150 million yuan (US$18.22 million) in importing advanced medical equipment and technology.

But medical fees at the new hospital will be collected in accordance with the prices set by local price departments, the official said.

Construction is expected to formally begin in November, and it should open for patients before the end of 2006, the official told China Daily.

The building of infrastructural facilities for the hospital has already begun, he added.

Located in Niushan Village in Dongguan's Dongcheng District, the hospital, which lies near the 107 national highway, covers an area of more than 15 hectares.

It will include more than 500 inpatient beds when it is finished.

About 80 per cent of the construction funds will be from the local Dongguan Association of Taiwan Business People, while the other 20 per cent will come from a hospital on Taiwan Island.

The new facility will aim to provide medical services to the city's Taiwanese investors and their family members, foreigners and local residents.

It is also expected to offer health checks for the large number of staff who are employed in local Taiwan-funded companies and joint ventures.

The hospital plans to set up a clinic or outpatient department in all 32 townships in the city.

Zhang Hanwen, an official from the Dongguan Association of Taiwan Business People, said the new hospital would certainly help raise medical treatment standards in Dongguan and improve the city's investment climate.

Construction of the Taiwan hospital has raised concerns on both sides of Taiwan Strait, Zhang said.

The proposal for building a Taiwan hospital in the city was first put forward by the Dongguan Association of Taiwan Business People in 2001.

Its location has changed several times before it was finally decided.

Dongguan has now attracted more than 57,000 Taiwan-funded companies and joint ventures with a contractual investment of more than US$8 billion.

More than 100,000 Taiwan investors and their families are now living and working in the city.

Dongguan has the highest population of Taiwanese residents in the Chinese mainland.

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