Investors drawn to Xinjiang

Updated: 2012-09-03 07:47

By Bao Chang in Urumqi (China Daily)

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Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region is playing a key role in Asian and European countries' investments in China, officials said on Sunday at the second China-Eurasia Expo.

"Linking China to Asian and European countries, Xinjiang has become one of the most popular investing destinations for investors from other countries," said Erkin Imirbakhi, chairman of the Standing Committee of the Xinjiang Regional People's Congress, at the expo's 2012 Eurasian Investment Promotion Agencies Roundtable.

Investors drawn to Xinjiang

Premier Wen Jiabao, together with political leaders from other participant countries, attend the opening ceremony of the second China-Eurasia Expo in Urumqi, capital of Northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, on Sunday. Wang Jing / China Daily 

"Thanks to its geographic advantage and rich reserve of resources, Xinjiang has tremendous business opportunities that attract investors worldwide," he said.

Figures from the Xinjiang regional government show that since this year, apart from Xinjiang's capital Urumqi, Kashgar and Hami prefectures have seen fast foreign-capital inflows, which have increased by 143 and 30.8 times year-on-year respectively.

The roundtable conference is a key forum during the second China-Eurasia Expo, which kicked off on Sunday in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang.

More than 160 investment agencies from 15 countries, including Britain, France, Italy, Mongolia and Pakistan, attended the round table targeting at investment promotion and Eurasian regional economic collaboration.

Antonino Laspina, director of the Italian Trade Commission in China, said that according to China's 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-15), Northwest China is one of the most promising regions, given its huge potential.

Led by Laspina, 11 Italian companies have come to Xinjiang to seek business opportunities at the expo.

Tsedenjav Sukhbaatar, Mongolia's ambassador to China, said that Mongolia, which borders Xinjiang, attaches great importance to relations between the two nations.

"The cooperation with Xinjiang can promote our relations with nearby countries, which link both Central Asia and Europe," Sukabaatar said.

By now, foreign investment to Xinjiang has surpassed $3 billion, with more than 500 foreign investors seeking a foothold in the region, and the investment is undergoing its most rapid growth.

Foreign companies engage mostly in the energy, mining and manufacturing industries.