On Jun. 12, Nyingchi City in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region elected the first members of the municipal party committee, symbolizing the region’s start as a formal city, Xinhua reported.
"Although it is just a one-word difference in the title of Nyingchi from prefecture to city, it is of great significance," Said Zhao Shijun, the newly elected municipal party secretary in an exclusive interview with Xinhua.
Zhao Shijun stressed that Nyingchi’s change will benefit the governing mechanisms of the community, continuously develop and manage the levels of urbanization, as well as promote legal construction and long-term stability. This means that there will be much more opportunity for growth and development.
Nyingchi, as Tibet’s main link to south Asia, will be connected with the "One Belt, One Road" and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor, spurring construction of the Himalayan economic cooperation belt. At the same time, within the autonomous region, Nyingchi’s economic cooperation with other places, such as Lhasa, Lhoka, and Chamdo can be strengthened, and the four-hour economic circle is scheduled to be accelerated. Nyingchi will also further strengthen ties with Yunnan, Sichuan, Chongqing, and other regions in China and actively merge with the "Big Shangri-La Economic Circle." This is a win-win situation, bringing new vitality to Nyingchi’s fast-growing development, Zhao Shijun added.
At an altitude of 3,100 meters, Nyingchi is rich with abundant natural resources. Currently, the forest coverage of the city amounts to 51.95 percent, making it one of the best ecologically protected places in the world. Additionally, Nyingchi’s transportation networks are improving quickly. The Metok Highway has already been completed. Nyingchi has also seen constant expansions in four areas, including the ecological tourism, featured agriculture and animal husbandry, hydropower, and Tibetan medicine, with double-digit increases for 15 consecutive years. In 2014, the Nyingchi’s GDP and income of urban and rural residents topped the list of the whole autonomous region.
Zhao Shijun also said that from now on great strides will be made to reach development goals by the year 2020. According the "13th Five-Year Plan", a series of important infrastructure projects will be constructed; meanwhile, reform and opening as well as equalization of basic public services in urban and rural areas will be accelerated. Nyingchi also plans to realize common prosperity in urban and rural areas, and boost cultural development, national unity, religious harmony, environment protection, rational exploitation, as well as long-term social stability.