CHANG­ING

Re­porter’s diary: Mon­go­lians tak­ing di

Global Times US Edition - - INDE - By Zhang Dan Yang Yu­pei

More and more Mon­go­lians tend to show friend­li­ness to Chi­nese peo­ple af­ter BRI en­tered the coun­try Chi­nese TV se­ries are widely watched in the coun­try, which may show that more peo­ple in Mon­go­lia are in­ter­ested in Chi­nese cul­ture

China’s bor­der with Mon­go­lia is 7,580 kilo­me­ters in length, the longest of all its neigh­bor­ing coun­tries. It takes only two hours to fly the 1,600 kilo­me­ters from Beijing to Ulan Ba­tor, the Mon­go­lian cap­i­tal. In the near fu­ture, when the new Ching­gis Khaan In­ter­na­tional Air­port opens, both Mon­go­lians and in­ter­na­tional vis­i­tors will be able to drive on the newly built air­port ex­press­way. Built by a Chi­nese com­pany un­der the China-pro­posed Belt and Road Ini­tia­tive (BRI), it is the first ever ex­press­way in Ulan Ba­tor. Adopt­ing Chi­nese road stan­dards, the road was highly praised by of­fi­cials from the Mon­go­lian traf­fic depart­ment and Mon­go­lian work­ers. How­ever, more than a decade ago, in­ci­dents of vi­o­lence and rob­bery tar­get­ing Chi­nese fre­quently hap­pened in Mon­go­lia. Neg­a­tive news on Chi­nese work­ers in Mon­go­lia ap­peared on lo­cal me­dia from time to time. But nowa­days, more and more Mon­go­lians

are be­com­ing more friend­lier to Chi­nese and ac­knowl­edg­ing BRI, which can be re­flected in the field of pub­lic wel­fare, the busi­ness sec­tor, as well as peo­ple-to-peo­ple and cul­tural ex­changes, the Global Times re­porter learned.

Im­prov­ing traf­fic

China’s Vice Pres­i­dent Wang Qis­han went to Ulan Ba­tor on July 10 to mark the 70th an­niver­sary of the es­tab­lish­ment of diplo­matic ties be­tween China and Mon­go­lia.

Wang and Mon­go­lian Prime Minister Ukhnaa Khurel­sukh at­tended the open­ing cer­e­mony for the ex­press­way on July 10.

Con­nect­ing the New Ulan Ba­tor In­ter­na­tional Air­port and Yar­mag toll sta­tion, the 32.226-kilo­me­ter long and 32.5-me­ter wide ex­press­way has six lanes, with a des­ig­nated driv­ing speed of 80 kilo­me­ters per hour.

“The ex­press­way will shorten driv­ing time from 90 min­utes to 40 min­utes,” Yang Yu­pei, deputy man­ager of the project built by China Tiesiju Civil En­gi­neer­ing Group, told the Global Times.

This im­prove­ment will mean a great deal to peo­ple liv­ing in Ulan Ba­tor, as the city is no­to­ri­ous for its traf­fic jams. It took al­most two hours to drive 19 kilo­me­ters at 9 pm dur­ing the Global Times re­porter’s stay in the city.

For­eign se­cond-hand cars are very cheap in Mon­go­lia, ac­cord­ing to Chi­nese con­struc­tion work­ers at the project in Ulan Ba­tor. As a re­sult, al­most every fam­ily there has a car.

At the same time, au­to­mo­bile ex­haust and dust from building con­struc­tion sites bring air pol­lu­tion to the city, es­pe­cially in win­ter.

The ubiq­ui­tous tower cranes and con­struc­tion signs also show the city is in a “growth pe­riod.”

In ad­di­tion to pro­vid­ing a faster al­ter­na­tive to the lo­cal peo­ple, the ex­press­way also show­cased the high-qual­ity stan­dards and in­tel­li­gent road­build­ing tech­nol­ogy of a Chi­nese com­pany.

One of the big­gest dif­fi­cul­ties the team en­coun­tered in Mon­go­lia was building a durable road un­der lo­cal weather con­di­tions, since the city sits in a high al­ti­tude and cold area, and the dry­ing tem­per­a­ture for bi­tu­men must be nei­ther too high nor too low.

Adopt­ing the Chi­nese stan­dard, the team con­trols road rough­ness to 0.8 cen­time­ters and lower, which is at the world-lead­ing level.

Yang cited a Mon­go­lian of­fi­cial from the trans­port depart­ment to demon­strate the flat­ness of the road.

“The of­fi­cial told me he was sleep­ing all the way back to the city cen­ter as the road was so flat and smooth,” Yang said.

Yang also noted that af­ter rain, the ex­press­way looked like a mirror, which also demon­strates its flat­ness.

Mon­go­lian work­ers were also amazed that the Chi­nese com­pany spent just over 900 days to com­plete the high-qual­ity project.

“I have learned many new road-building tech­niques that I never knew be­fore in my coun­try,” Nyam­dorj, a Mon­go­lian mea­sure­ment

deputy man­ager of the project built by China Tiesiju Civil En­gi­neer­ing Group

Photo: Cour­tesy of China Tiesiju En­gi­neer­ing Group Photo: Zhang DAN/GT

A view of the ward in the Re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion and De­vel­op­ment Cen­ter for Chil­dren with Dis­abil­i­ties in Mon­go­lia In­set: Con­nect­ing the New Ulan Ba­tor In­ter­na­tional Air­port and Yar­mag toll sta­tion, the ex­press­way will shorten driv­ing time from 90 min­utes to 40 min­utes.

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