A fire that swept across the tourist town of Dukezong in Shangri-la county of southwestern China’s Yunnan province on Saturday has caused economic losses estimated at more than 100 million yuan (US$16.5397 million), China Business News reported Monday, citing sources from the provincial propaganda department. A total of 242 ancient houses were razed, affecting 335 households and damaging some of the heritage sites, while 43 other houses were demolished to create a fire break. The Shangri-la county attracted some 7.57 million tourists in 2012, netting an income of 7 billion yuan. Whether or not the fire would affect the plans of tourism companies interested in investing in the area remains to be seen, officials said. In 2012, Lijiang Yulong Tourism Co. Ltd. (002033.CN) signed an agreement with the Shangri-la county government to invest 624 million yuan in constructing a high-end resort and a culture zone in the area. The project is scheduled to start operations in 2015, the report said.
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