China Plans Yangtze River Economic Belt

Published on Author harringtonj16
Screen Shot 2015-04-05 at 15.14.36
Wuhan, a current city on the Yangtze River

The Silk Road Economic Belt is not the only new development project that China is undertaking. China recently revealed plans to improve the infrastructure of central China by planning the construction of city clusters along the Yangtze River.

Despite the fact that China has been growing rapidly for the last twenty years, much of the growth has been geographically unbalanced. The majority of the Chinese economy is situated along the coast or in the southeast basin, leaving much of China’s vast land unused. By revamping 2004s ‘Rise of Central China’ initiative, these new cities will be the medium by which more stable and balanced growth is achieved.

The zone will cover over 300,000 square kilometers. This, and the goals that the Chinese have set for the project, indicate that this will be a massive undertaking. Some of the objectives for this Yangtze River Economic Belt will be to use regional comparative advantages, such as having the Yangtze River as a mode of transportation, and to expedite industrial upgrades, but one of the main points laid out was the integration of agriculture into the more urban fold of China. One of the key objectives for this project is to empower modern agriculture bases.

This will come about in two ways. First, some the once isolated agricultural hubs will be in closer proximity to urban areas, allowing for more direct transfer of technology, labor, and capital. Second, the ‘farms’ themselves will probably see infrastructure improvements once the economic layout has been established.

China has been rapidly initiating projects to expand its stagnating economy. And although the initial costs will be high, China investing in more stable, widespread growth is a smart way to address its gradual slowdown.


3 Responses to China Plans Yangtze River Economic Belt

  1. Are there any environmental components to the plan? It seems a good opportunity to address China’s horribly unhealthy river pollution.

    • The phrasing in the statement made by China is ‘environmental protection’, but so far I don’t see any concrete plans to address problems that already exist. Maybe they’re wording it like this because they know that massive urbanization efforts will cause even more pollution but can be more closely monitored this time.

  2. These sorts of regional programs are common around the world. There’s likely a document providing more details. As per the comments, without reading that it’s impossible to know whether the proposal is sufficiently concrete as to suggest the initiative will have an impact.