Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has been implementing a "black and white" economic strategy for the past years to boost the local economy and improve residents' standards of living.
"Black" here means petroleum and "white" means cotton. The strategy means driving the local economy by tapping the local rich petroleum resources and developing traditional cotton planting.
Having the country's greatest potential for petroleum exploration, Xinjiang has made a breakthrough in tapping petroleum over the past 10 years.
Xinjiang is the fourth-largest oil producer in China. The output value of its oil and petrochemical industry has topped 32 billion yuan (US$3.8 billion), making up 43 per cent of its total industrial output value.
Revenue from the region's oil and petrochemical industry reached 4.787 billion yuan (US$570 million) last year, accounting for 45.58 per cent of its annual revenues.
Xinjiang's cotton output is the highest in the country. In 1998, the region's cotton output accounted for 31.3 per cent of China's total.
As the world's largest exporter of textile goods, China used to import large quantities of cotton.
Now, as Xinjiang's cotton planting develops rapidly, China's cotton sector has bypassed the problem of price controls imposed by other countries.
(Xinhua News Agency February 21, 2001)