Region wins fresh pledge of aid

PUBLISHED : Monday, 21 July, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 21 July, 1997, 12:00am

Vice-premier Zou Jiahua has pledged to give Inner Mongolia more financial support to speed up its economic development.

'The central Government's policy of helping the region speed up development will remain unchanged,' Mr Zou told a rally yesterday in the capital, Hohhot, attended by more than 50,000 people.

Mr Zou is leading a delegation from the central Government to Inner Mongolia to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the autonomous region.

Mongolians should give agriculture, animal husbandry, energy and mining their top priority in developing their economy, Mr Zou said.

Inner Mongolia is one of China's poorest areas and its economy is relatively primitive compared with coastal provinces such as Guangdong and Zhejiang.

Mr Zou called for social stability to be maintained and the unity of the motherland to be safeguarded, according to Xinhua (the New China News Agency).

He also asked cadres to 'guard against infiltration attempts by Western hostile forces in the country's ethnic regions through ethnic and religious issues'.

But he added that such vigilance must not jeopardise China's reform and opening to the foreign world, and efforts must be made to 'properly handle . . . social contradictions'.