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Pudong on New Spree to Entice Investors
At the early years of the fledgling Pudong District, coming into existence 12 years ago, the founders used its new high-rises as a magnet to attract business giants from around the world. It worked.

Meanwhile, the district pulled in industrial investment, thanks to its four special zones catering to high-tech. It also worked.

Now, district leaders are focusing on better service and environment to maintain the development momentum.

"The first thing the government is doing is to sort out rules that are diametrically opposite to WTO principles and abolish them," Zhang Yaolun, deputy director of the district, said at a news conference yesterday, marking the 12th anniversary of the launching of Pudong New Area as it was named before.

Pudong is gradually losing its advantages accruing from some preferential policies granted specially for the new area by the Chinese central government, officials said, citing tariff discrepancy and new industrial zones coming up in neighboring cities.

So in order to keep drawing more overseas investors, Pudong will "turn its focus from preferential policies to service," Zhang said.

As part of its streamlining efforts, the district has abolished 292 items of administrative procedures and revised 84 items in the paperwork of starting a business, enabling investors to shorten the time for starting a new project from more than one year to a couple of weeks.

District officials have also vowed to cut red tape and improve efficiency this year.

To make the environment attractive, Pudong will kick off a new round of development along the Huangpu River and the East China Sea.

(eastday.com April 19, 2002)

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