Risky contracts

Updated: 2013-02-08 09:21


Hu Yongqi

(China Daily)

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Since 2010, six villages in the township of Dulongjiang have undertaken a huge road-building project through the rocky mountainsides. Dozens of private contractors from regions across Yunnan rushed to the small town lying between Gaoligong Mountain and northern Myanmar.

For the entrepreneurs, the harsh natural conditions carry the risk of losing money, instead of making a profit. Deng Lianghai, 56, a businessman from the neighboring city of Lijiang, won a contract to build a 15 km section of dirt road for five households in the hillside village of Kongdang.

Last year, a landslide caused by heavy downpours left two excavators smashed and one of his men missing. Deng gave the victim's family 300,000 yuan ($48,000) in compensation and spent a further 400,000 yuan to repair the machines.

Deng had calculated that the contract would bring a profit of 500,000 yuan, but the accident meant he would lose at least 300,000 yuan. "In 20 years of building roads around Yunnan province, I have never before encountered such a complex hill and will never accept a contract in Dulongjiang again," he said.

However, the Derung people are happily anticipating the opening of the new roads, so they can visit the county seat in winter, said He Xiangxiong, Party secretary of the township. "We are grateful to all the people who make an effort to promote the development of the Derung people, and will be happy to receive many more visitors when the new highway is completed."