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Suzhou aims to profit from 2010 Shanghai World Expo
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Just 120 km from Shanghai, Suzhou is confidently predicting the Expo will give the city a massive economic boost. It is estimated that more than 50 million people will travel to Shanghai for the Expo – and around 35 percent of them are expected to visit surrounding cities, according to SIP.

With a reputation as one of the most beautiful cities in China, Suzhou sees itself as ideally placed to capitalize on the influx of business visitors to the Expo.

An exhibition displays the progress achieved in the past 15 years since Suzhou Industrial Park was established as a joint venture with the government of Singapore on June 25, 2009.

Located in the middle of the Yangtze River Delta, the most developed area in China, Suzhou is adjacent to Shanghai to the east and Zhejiang to the south, faces Taihu Lake to the west and the Yangtze River to the north. With a 140km long stretch of the Yangtze, the north-south Grand Canal and the Nanjing-Shanghai Expressway running from west to east, Suzhou easily accessible by all forms of transportation.

The city received 21.9 million overseas tourists and 52.7 million domestic visitors in 2008. It has 148 star-rated hotels, including 56 graded as four stars or above.

There are many famous historical attractions located within the old walled city. Suzhou ranks third after Beijing and Xi'an in terms of the number of nationally-recognized cultural sites.

A large poster of China's traditional Kunqu Opera is displayed in the Suzhou Science and Cultural Arts Center on June 25, 2009.

Surrounding Suzhou are more than 200 ancient water towns offering delightful views of canals and ancient Suzhou architecture. The most famous water towns including Luzhi, Tongli, Zhouzhuang, and Qiandeng are nationally recognized and protected heritage sites.

This year marks the 15th anniversary of the Suzhou Industrial Park, the largest cooperative project ever undertaken by China and Singapore.

The idea of developing a modern industrial town to transplant the lessons learnt from the Singapore economic miracle was first raised in 1992. After discussions it was decided to jointly develop a modern industrial park in Suzhou. The China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park (CS-SIP) was launched on Feb. 26, 1994 when then Chinese Vice Premier Li Lanqing and Singapore Senior Minister Lee Kuan Yew signed an agreement to jointly develop the park.

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