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NDRC denies Baoding chosen as auxiliary capital

Officials on Wednesday denied claims that Baoding, a city in Beijing's neighboring Hebei province, has been chosen as an auxiliary capital to devolve some central government functions.

Officials from the National Development and Reform Commission, the nation's top economic planning agency, denied the magazine report, although they acknowledged NDRC is drafting a plan to coordinate the development of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei province.

Liu Feng, spokesperson for Baoding government, also denied the report. Liu told the Beijing News he had never heard such rumors and only learned of them from the Internet on Wednesday morning.

With a population of over 11 million, Baoding is in the center of Hebei, 140 kilometers southwest of Beijing.

Caijing magazine had reported that governments in Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei had reached agreement to name Baoding as primary choice for an auxiliary political center after Beijing. Such a move would counteract Beijing's dominance as the nation's political, cultural and economic center.

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