Northeast China's Heilongjiang Province will build an industrial corridor along its southwestern cities of Harbin, Daqing and Qiqihar to boost the local economy and attract more foreign investment, said Governor Zhang Zuoji.
Speaking here Thursday morning at the press conference of the 16th China Harbin Fair for Trade and Economic Cooperation, the official said the provincial government's decision to build the industrial corridor was made following the central government's long-term strategy of revitalizing the old northeastern industrial base.
The Harbin-Daqing-Qiqihar Industrial Corridor will cover 800 square kilometers and will be completed by 2020. It will be a comprehensive industrial park with industries of petrochemistry, energy, automobiles, electronics, medicine and food.
The official said the new industrial corridor will serve as a good platform to develop Heilongjiang's foreign trade, especially with Russia, and the processing business.
Centered around the three cities, the industrial belt will be built after the transformation and development of the area's saline-alkali land, swamps and some unexploited land, rather than taking up the farmland, Zhang said.
He said the area measures 120,000 square kilometers and has about 20 million population.
The three cities have 40 universities and colleges, 72 percent of the province's total. The official said the abundant human resources of science and technology, in addition to the huge labor force, will be greatly helpful to build the industrial corridor.
According to the provincial statistical bureau, the gross domestic product of Heilongjiang was 530.3 billion yuan (about 64.1 billion US dollars) last year, rising 11.7 percent year-on-year.
The 16th China Harbin Fair for Trade and Economic Cooperation is scheduled to be held from June 15 to 19 in the province capital city Harbin.