Date
23 October 2017
China is calling for towns and cities to be test beds for urbanization schemes. Photo: Bloomberg
China is calling for towns and cities to be test beds for urbanization schemes. Photo: Bloomberg

Open call for urbanization guinea pigs

Local governments have until the end of August to nominate cities and towns for a test run of a national urbanization scheme, the Economic Information Daily reported Wednesday.

The pilot project will focus on ways to turn towns with a population of 100,000 people into cities. It will also explore cost-sharing programs to give migrants the same access as residents to public services such as medical care and education, the report said.

It will pilot public-private partnerships to encourage private investment in urban public infrastructure, accelerate surveys of rural land and speed up registration of rural homes to give farmers more property rights.

The push is part of the State Council’s aim to overhaul urban centers as outlined in its National New-type Urbanization Plan (2014-2020) in March. The plan calls for a new role for government that involves it supporting rather than supplanting market forces in shaping China’s urban landscape, thereby allowing the country’s cities to grow more organically and efficiently.

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