Officials push for more regional co-operation
( 2003-12-05 00:36) (China Daily)
Senior officials from the development research centre of the State Council suggested that Northeast China should promote regional co-operation and form pillar industries to revive the old industrial base.
"We should design a comprehensive system aimed at improving the performance of the whole region, but should not restructure some of the region's industries,''said Feng Fei, vice-ministry of the industry department of the State Council development research centre. He said that in a seminar on revitalizing Northeast China.
As China's traditional industrial base, Northeast China's Liaoning, Jilin and Heilongjiang provinces share many similarities in terms of economy, culture and history. And they have many important industrial bases, which include machinery, automobiles, chemicals and medicine.
But co-operation among them has been rather low-level in the past, which prevents local enterprises from increasing scale and participating in international markets, said Jin Xuecheng, a senior official from the People's Bank of China.
"The three provinces have many industries in common and all plan to develop them as pillar industries, for example, automobiles. This may lead to redundancy and destructive competition,'' Jin warned.
"The most important thing local governments should do is to sit down and work out medium and long-term regional development plans in line with the central government's rejuvenation strategy for the region,'' said Jin.
Co-operation may equalize the sharing of service costs across the region and allow a more harmonious distribution of resources, said Mario Pezzini, head of Territorial Reviews and Governance Division of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.
Northeast China should focus on developing two city clusters, one on the Liaodong Peninsula with Dalian as the core, and the other includes inland cities with Shenyang as the hub, suggested Feng Fei.
"It is more reasonable to build up famous brands backed by the whole region rather than develop by one province alone, '' said Feng.
Each province should develop a specific industry according to its strengths. For example, for Jilin, its focus industry has to be First Automotive Works (FAW), and it can serve the other two provinces, which should have other key industries of their own, Feng added.
As for the region's abundant agricultural resources, expert suggested that Northeast China should set up an agricultural trust and list abroad.
Jin Xuecheng also said that the People's Bank of China has been working out a financial plan to help revive the region.
Some local officials have realized the need of co-operation.
"We are delighted to assist Jilin and Liaoning in the industries that are their specialties,'' said Shen Liguo, vice-governor of Heilongjiang Province. Jilin's governor Hong Hu also expressed a will to push for more regional co-operation.
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