Xinjiang region sees expanding ‘friends circle’, witnesses booming development in past decade
Published: Aug 28, 2022 10:56 PM
Wheat harvesting machine in Tacheng, Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Photo: VCG

Wheat harvesting machine in Tacheng, Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region Photo: VCG

Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region has witnessed an expanding "friends circle" over recent years, a local official told a press conference held over the weekend, noting that the region has strengthened economic and trade exchanges with economies along the "Belt and Road" routes, signed 21 cooperation agreements with 25 countries and international organizations, and established economic and trade relations with 176 countries and regions.

In the first half of this year, the region's trade increased by 39.1 percent year-on-year, and the actual utilization of foreign capital increased by 291 percent year-on-year, the official said.

Such numbers serve as an iron counterstrike against rumors and slanders against the region from Western countries, especially the US, observers said.

The Xinjiang regional government held a press conference on Saturday outlining the region's achievements in the past decade. During this time, 3.06 million people were lifted out of poverty, and absolute poverty was eradicated in the region.

In the past decade, Xinjiang witnessed booming development with regional GDP climbing to 1.6 trillion yuan ($230 billion) last year, double the figure of 2012. 

Xinjiang is also edging up its infrastructure. It has more than 8,768 kilometers of railroad line in service, and the total length of roads has reached 217,300 kilometers. The region has 24 civilian airports, more than other parts of the country.

For the past few years, the US has smeared China's counter-terrorism efforts in Xinjiang. Wang Jiang, an expert at the Institute of China's Borderland Studies at Zhejiang Normal University, told the Global Times that since 2018, Western countries have intensified their slander and ramped up efforts to use the region as a card to contain China's development.

However, these numbers reflect the truth about Xinjiang and expose Western lies by showing to the world how much Xinjiang has progressed in its development, said Wang. 

Wang is also confident that Xinjiang will keep up this momentum in the future. Xinjiang region is supported by the vast Chinese market, and its development will be further stimulated, said Wang.