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Capital cities mustn't grow as parasites

China Daily | Updated: 2017-02-09 07:50

THE MUNICIPAL government of Jinan, East China's Shandong province, not satisfied with the city's status as provincial capital, recently called on the entire province to give the city more support in order to make it the leading city in the province in terms of GDP as well. Beijing News commented on Wednesday:

It is natural for Jinan to be ambitious in terms of its economic strength since it is the provincial capital. However, it is wrong for it to call on the entire province to support its ambition.

According to the national statistics bureau, 15 cities in Shandong were on the list of China's 100 cities with the largest GDP in 2016. Among these cities, Qingdao ranked highest, at 12th on the list, while Jinan at 21, ranked third among the province's cities.

But the development of Shandong's cities is well balanced. This is good. In many Chinese provinces and autonomous regions, the capital's development is often more advanced while blocking the development of other cities.

That Qingdao is the leading city in Shandong is due to it being at the forefront of the market economy, and it is home to a number of leading Chinese brands including Haier, Hisense, and Tsingtao Beer.

It is admirable that Jinan wants to make its economy stronger and improve its status, but that should be based on its own efforts.

To do well in this regard requires the comprehensive deepening of reform. Capital cities could be bigger and stronger, but not by being blindly greedy about their development. They need to be self-reliant.

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