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Chinese builders to construct 15,000 new UK homes

By BO LEUNG | China Daily UK | Updated: 2017-03-27 18:44

Sino-Australian investment group ASF will build 15,000 affordable homes in Barking, East London, in collaboration with major Chinese construction companies.

The development will cost 3.2 billion pounds ($4.4 billion), cover 100 hectares, and create 8,000 jobs.

The new Castle Green development will be created on top of the A13 highway, with the road buried inside a 2-kilometer tunnel. The road links East London to the M25 orbital motorway. The developers believe the tunnel will ease congestion and reduce noise and pollution, while also cutting down journey times.

Yang Min, chairman of ASF group, said: "ASF has three strategic partners for this project, China State Construction, China Harbour Engineering Company, and China International Marine Containers. These are all big Chinese construction companies. A lot of Chinese companies coming into the UK face challenges in getting projects started, so we have provided a platform to enable us all to work together."

In addition, a new overground train station will be built at a cost of 15 million pounds. Darren Rodwell, the leader of Barking and Dagenham borough council, said the development is an exciting opportunity for the region.

"The project is going to be aspirational for local people, they are going to have better linkage, better housing, so it is really important that everyone sees that they can get something from this. It will be a boost to the economy, not only from the jobs it will create, but the legacy it will leave."

He said work on the development, which is located between Central London and the Thames Estuary, should start in October. Barking was the final destination of the first direct freight train from China when it arrived in January.

Jin Xu, minister counselor of the Economic and Commercial Office at the Chinese embassy, said: "This new development will make Barking more popular and famous in China, following the arrival of the freight train. One of the largest companies in China is also involved with ASF, which shows that Chinese companies have strong confidence in the UK and London.

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