Heilongjiang targets 11pc economic growth

PUBLISHED : Friday, 22 May, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 22 May, 2009, 12:00am

Heilongjiang has set a target of 11 per cent growth in gross domestic product this year even though the economy only rose 6 per cent in the first quarter, according to governor Li Zhanshu.

'Compared with the coastal areas, the negative impact of the global financial crisis is relatively mild on Heilongjiang,' said Mr Li, who was in Hong Kong pitching for more investment projects in the province.

Mr Li said the northeastern province's economy was benefiting from the central government's policies, including the revitalisation of old industrial bases in the region and the 4 trillion yuan (HK$4.5 trillion) economic stimulus package.

The continued adjustment of the province's industrial structure, with an emphasis on developing industries such as technology, pharmaceuticals and new energy, in addition to its four traditional pillar industries - equipment manufacturing, oil, food processing and wood processing - also helped fuel domestic consumption, Mr Li added.

Last year, Heilongjiang's GDP reached 831 billion yuan, representing an increase of 11.8 per cent from a year earlier.

To maintain double-digit GDP growth and pave the way for future economic development, Heilongjiang was accelerating investments in infrastructure facilities such as expressways, railways, airports, and utilities including water supply, Mr Li said.

Planned social investment in fixed assets of the province this year was expected to reach 500 billion yuan, up 36 per cent from last year, he said.

The province would also expand its trading and co-operation with Hong Kong and overseas companies, Mr Li said.

By yesterday morning, Heilongjiang's government had signed 67 agreements or letters of co-operation intention worth US$8.24 billion in its latest trade promotion in Hong Kong, according to Ye Xiaofeng, director-general of the province's department of commerce.

At the end of last year, Hong Kong companies had invested or committed a total investment of US$8.73 billion in the province.