China's regional development gap narrows over past decade

Business 32

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BEIJING, Sept. 20 (Xinhua) -- The regional development gap within China has been narrowing over the past decade thanks to the country's efforts to coordinate regional development.

Economic growth rates in China's central and western regions have been higher than those in the eastern regions for many years, said Xiao Weiming, an official from the National Development and Reform Commission, at a press conference on Tuesday.

China is a vast country with a huge population and remarkable regional differences, and its eastern regions are more developed. The government has undertaken great efforts to boost the economic growth of its less developed regions.

In 2021, central China's GDP was 25 trillion yuan (3.6 trillion U.S. dollars), an increase of 13.5 trillion yuan from 2012, and its share of the national GDP was 22 percent, up from 21.3 percent in 2012.

In 2021, western China's GDP was 24 trillion yuan, an increase of 13.3 trillion yuan, and it took 21.1 percent of the national GDP, up from 19.6 percent in 2012.

Eastern China's per capita GDP was 1.53 times central China's GDP in 2021, dropping from 1.69 times in 2012. Eastern China's per capita GDP shrank from 1.87 times western China's GDP in 2012 to 1.68 times in 2021.

The total length of railways in operation in central and western China is now approximately 90,000 kilometers, nearly 60 percent of the country's total.

In recent years, China has unveiled multiple plans to facilitate regional development, such as plans for the coordinated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region, the development of the Yangtze Economic Belt, the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, and the ecological conservation and high-quality development of the Yellow River basin. ■

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