(TibetanReview.net, Mar29’23) – The local Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) government alone is to spend more than 7 billion yuan (more than 1 billion US dollars) this year on projects of border consolidation and defence. Besides, about 54 billion yuan will be invested in key infrastructure projects, including the under-construction Nyingchi-Ya’an section of the Sichuan-Tibet Railway, reported China’s official chinadaily.com.cn Mar 27.
Altogether, the TAR government is to invest more than 143 billion yuan ($21 billion) on 191 key projects this year, the report said, citing Tibet Daily and the region’s Development and Reform Commission.
About 8.2 billion yuan was stated to be meant to improve and ensure people’s livelihoods. Projects were stated to include kindergarten infrastructure, public schools, public health services and the construction of a regional planetarium.
It was not clear whether this meant the setting up of more controversial boarding schools designed for Sinicizing Tibetan children. China has defended these schools in the face of strong, repeated criticisms from UN human rights experts in their recent reports.
More than 18 billion yuan will be allocated in the first quarter on more than 40% of startups and resumptions of projects expected during this year.
The report said the about 54 billion yuan to be invested in key infrastructure projects will also include those to renovate Terminal 1 and Terminal 3 at Gonggar Airport in Lhasa, various road and bridge projects and clean energy promotion and utilization in rural areas.
More than 71 billion yuan was stated to be earmarked for the development of characteristic industries, including clean energy, green industries, tourism infrastructure facilities, plateau agriculture and animal husbandry.
And more than 1.2 billion yuan will be invested in ecological civilization, including protection and preservation projects and urban sewage and garbage disposal and collection systems, then report said.