State Council approves plan for developing western regions


The State Council, or China's Cabinet has approved the plan for developing its western regions in the country's 12th five-year plan.

The plan aims to bring the region’s economic growth rate and urban and rural income growth rate higher than the country’s average.

Another 15 thousand kilometers of railway will be built in the region. And forest coverage will reach some 19 percent.

The government has pledged to reduce energy consumption per unit of regional GDP by 15 percent. And water consumption per unit of industrial value added output by 30 per cent.

More than 90 per cent of students eligible for public education will benefit from the nine year compulsory schooling system under the plan.

The development drive began back in 2001. It covers 12 provinces and 3 autonomous regions. The area spans about 7 million square kilometers, accounting for 71 percent of the country.

The drive aims to use the surplus economic development capacity of China’s eastern areas, to push up economic and social development in the west.

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