By Xia Xiaolun, Xing Xue from People’s Daily
Detailed construction work plans for the Xiongan New Area, an economic zone about 100 kilometers south of Beijing, are in the works, an official announced recently, while assuring everyone that the zone will be built to the highest standards.
“Xiongan is a major historic, strategic move for the country and will be crucial for the millennium,” said Chen Gang, head of the Xiongan New Area administration, on October 19 on the sidelines of the 19th National Congress.
“Therefore, we need real patience and strategic willpower to build the New Area into an historical heritage site that we can leave to future generations,” Chen Gang said during a panel discussion with delegates from Hebei Province.
Xi Jinping, in his report to the 19th National Congress, also mentioned the Xiongan New Area and the need to stick to high standards in building requirements.
China will come up with forward-looking plans and higher standards for the Xiongan New Area to relieve Beijing of any functions that are not essential to its role as China’s capital and for the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, Xi said.
Xi’s guidelines for the work on the new area came after the CPC Central Committee and the State Council announced the decision of establishing a state-level Xiongan New Area, back on April 1.
Chen explained that the plans for the new area have been in the making with stringent requirements since April and that policy makers have in mind a global vision, international standards, Chinese characteristics, and lofty goals.
The plan calls for priority to be given to ecological protection, green development, a people-centered development path, and traditional Chinese culture as well, Chen Gang added.
At the end of September, when Beijing authorities announced the city’s plans for the 2016 – 2035 period, they made it clear that Tongzhou and Xiongan will form two "wings" of the city.
This also means that Beijing will accentuate its function as the center of politics, culture, international exchanges and scientific and technological innovation of China and make full use of its function in the surrounding areas.
The plan calls for the Tongzhou District to be turned into a subsidiary administrative center for Beijing, while the Xiongan New Area will absorb "non-capital” functions of Beijing and provide new growth for the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region.
The Xiongan New Area and the subsidiary administrative center will develop together, Chen Jining, the acting mayor of Beijing, said during a panel discussion of Beijing delegates at the congress.
Chen Jining said that the two support each other, with work on them coordinated, and Beijing will make every effort to support the development of the New Area.
Beijing and the Xiongan New Area have a cooperation agreement covering eight fields, including elementary education and hospitals, he added.