Projects to im­prove traf­fic on Yangtze

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSS AMERICA - By LUOWANGSHU and LIUKUN

China will dredge sec­tions of the Yangtze River this year to deepen it and in­crease the amount of freight traf­fic that can use the wa­ter­way, a na­tional leg­is­la­tor said re­cently.

“Projects will be car­ried out on the up­per, mid­dle and lower reaches of the Yangtze River,” said Tang Guan­jun, deputy to the Na­tional Peo­ple’s Con­gress and also di­rec­tor of the Chang­hang River Ad­min­is­tra­tion of Nav­i­ga­tional Af­fairs in Hubei prov­ince.

“We aim at form­ing awa­ter net­work con­nect­ing more places,” he said.

“The wa­ter level is of prime im­por­tance to freight trans­porta­tion on the river. For ev­ery 10cen­time­ter rise in the wa­ter level, a 3,000 met­ric ton ship can carry an ex­tra 176 tons of cargo,” he said.

“The ‘golden wa­ter gate­way’ is es­sen­tial to boost­ing the devel­op­ment of the Yangtze River Eco­nomic Belt. The river’s main­stream is the busiest river in the world re­gard­ing freight traf­fic,” Tang said.

In 2016, freight traf­fic on the main­stream of the Yangtze River was 2.31 bil­lion­metric tons, while rail­ways across the coun­try car­ried 3.33 bil­lion tons. The river han­dled 15.2 mil­lion con­tain­ers last year.

“Wa­ter trans­porta­tion is much cheaper than rail and road trans­porta­tion,” he said.

New­pro­jects will be car­ried

Lu Yu of the Sino-US Times news­pa­per is cov­er­ing China’s an­nual na­tional leg­isla­tive and po­lit­i­cal con­sul­ta­tive sessions. He tries to ac­tively par­tic­i­pate in ev­ery news con­fer­ence and open panel dis­cus­sion.

Lu has raised ques­tions to the State Coun­cil Lead­ing Group Of­fice for Poverty Alle­vi­a­tion and Devel­op­ment di­rec­tor Li­uYongfu, For­eignMin­is­ter Wang Yi, and ZhangMao, head of the State Ad­min­is­tra­tion for In­dus­try and Com­merce.

Lu is not alone. Bei­jing is swarm­ing with jour­nal­ists re­port­ing on the fifth ses­sion of the 12thNa­tional Peo­ple’s Con­gress and the fifth ses­sion of the 12th Na­tional Com­mit­tee of the Chi­nese Peo­ple’s Po­lit­i­cal Con­sul­ta­tive Con­fer­ence. Ac­cord­ing to the me­dia cen­ter, this year’s sessions have re­ceived more than 3,000 jour­nal­ist ap­pli­ca­tions, in­clud­ing those from an in­creased num­ber of for­eign re­porters.

“Be­cause China now is such an in­flu­en­tial coun­try, no jour­nal­ist wants to miss out on an event so abun­dant with news,” Lu said.

It’s the first time Ron­ald Kato, a jour­nal­ist with Vi­sion Group in Uganda, has been to China. “It’s hard to un­der­stand what goes on here, un­til you see Chi­nese democ­racy in ac­tion,” he said.

While Kato knows al­ready how democ­racy in China dif­fers from that in the West, he now sees that it works and puts peo­ple at the cen­ter of their own gov­ern­ment.

We will build a green nav­i­ga­tion chan­nel ... and use an eco­log­i­cal de­sign to al­low fish to mi­grate and plants to grow.”

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