Jing-jin-ji project celebrates its two year anniversary
On February 26th 2014, Xi Jinping launched the ambitious development plan for the Jing-jin-ji megalopolis, whose purposes were a better integration of the population, and bringing Beijing, Tianjin and several cities of the Hubei province together into a metropolitan centre strong enough to compete with those from the east and the south of the country (Yangzi delta and Pearl River). On the occasion of the second anniversary of the project, the Chinese Center for the urban development is reviewing the progress made.
The management of the project was given to a senior group of party leaders in order to establish a working and joint development mechanism of the region. In order to oversee this mechanism, Zhang Gaoli, the current vice-prime minister and permanent member of the central committee of the CCP, was appointed as the head of the project during the late 2015 plenary session in which the project was labelled as being in the national interest.
In terms of regional planning, the aim of the plan is twofold: reducing congestion in Beijing regarding its municipal administration while slowing down the population growth at a plateau of around 21 million. It is in this context that the municipality of Beijing started move to the suburbs of Tongzhou in the east. Meanwhile, obtaining the 2022 Winter Olympics, which are to be held in Zhangjiakou, has promoted collaboration between the municipality of Beijing and Hebei province.
Several other co-operation projects regarding public equipment and infrastructures were born, especially in the hospital and education sectors. The implementation of the dialogue mechanism between the hospitals of the region must increase the number of patients in Hebei province hospitals in order to reduce the pressure on Beijing’s. Concerning education, a massive investment of 1 billion yuan was realized for the creation of a zone of scientific competition. In the same way, a center for innovation in co-operation with Beida and Tsinghua in Beijing, Nankai in Tianjing, and the University of Hebei, was established. The objective is that it becomes the first national platform for scientific innovation of the country.
In terms of ecology, more co-operation regarding environmental policies is expected. The three regions have already signed a co-operation protocol on the cleaning of waters and a wildlife protection plan.