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Huludao – the Pearl of Bohai Bay
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Homeland of China's space hero Yang Liwei, Huludao (Gourd Island) is a beautiful, coastal city along the Bohai Bay in western Liaoning Province, northeast China.

Now the youngest city in Liaoning is embracing a golden era of development after the province ushered in a new opening-up strategy for the coastal areas at the beginning of this year, said Mayor Sun Zhaolin of Huludao to china.org.cn on May 26.

At the beginning of this year, Liaoning Province adopted a development strategy of "Five Points (Spots) and One Line" to develop its coastal regions. The ports in the five cities of Huludao, Jinzhou, Yingkou, Dalian and Dandong, all located along the coastline of Bohai Bay and Yellow Sea, are to be expanded. And there's reference made to the Binhai Road currently under construction which links all five areas. The 1,443 km road runs from Huludao to Dandong and will assist with the provincial opening up.

The strategy responds to the central government's decision to rejuvenate the old industrial base of northeast China and see Bohai Bay's economic belt thrive.

Huludao, the meeting point between north and northeast China, had many advantages with which to face an historic opportunity, said the mayor.

Huludao, with an area of 10,415 square kilometers and a population of 2.75 million, has a coastline of 258 kilometers. It has four sound industrial pillars – shipbuilding, petrochemicals, non-ferrous metal production and machinery manufacture.

The Huludao Beigang (North Port) Industrial Zone was a pioneering area for development in Huludao, said Sun.

The industrial zone has a total planned area of 35 square kilometers. The first-stage area is 16.87 square kilometers with a 16-km-long coastal line. According to the plan, the first-stage would include shipbuilding docks, harbor storage and logistics support, comprehensive industrial facilities and Dongshan light industry park.

Local government has given the green light to investors here. Outside investors are being encouraged with preferential policies including free use of land – abandoned saline and beach areas not of any use for farming but ideal for industry, the creation of a favorable environment, and no restriction on residence registration.

Since 2005, 16 projects with a total investment of 2.7 billion yuan have been finalized for the industrial zone.

Apart from its industrial potential, the city boasts rich tourist resources including the well known ancient city of Xingcheng dating back to the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), sandy beaches, the Jiumenkou section of the Great Wall, a national forest park, and the Juhua (chrysanthemum) Island which has over 100 bodhi trees each being 1,000 years old. Such trees are normally found in south China.

(China.org.cn by staff reporter Guo Xiaohong, May 29, 2006)

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