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Yangtze River's shipping capacity expands
www.chinaview.cn 2006-01-23 16:52:07

    NANJING, Jan. 23 (Xinhuanet) -- The shipping capacity on the mainstream of the Yangtze River, China's longest waterway, reached 795 million tons last year, rating one of the most tapped rivers among the world's inland rivers, official statistics show.

    The handling capacity of ports along the river's mainstream reached 650 million tons in 2005. The total throughput included 78 million tons of cargo in foreign trade and 2.6 million TEUs of containers, said Jin Yihua, director of the Yangtze River Navigation Affairs Administration.

    The throughput on the mainstream was only 400 million tons in 2000.

    The Chinese government attaches great importance to improving the navigation conditions of the Yangtze, which is now playing an increasingly crucial role in economic growth in the river valley and becomes an vital link of international navigation.

    In 2003, the Chinese government has decided to invest 16 billion yuan (about 2 billion U.S. dollars) to dredge the navigation course of the Yangtze before 2020.

    An expansion project for the 10.5-m-deep navigation course has been completed, which provide passage access to shipping vessels with 50,000 dead-weight-tonnage through the Nanjing-Shanghai section of the Yangtze River.

    Buoys have been installed on the Nanjing-Liuhekou section of the river, so as to ensure the passing ships' navigation safety.

    Expanding navigation on the river has been prospering areas along the mighty river. Currently, the Yangtze is flanked with metallurgical, power, chemical, auto, building materials and machinery industrial belts, along with more than 20 state-level economic and technological, and high-tech development zones.

    The shipping capacity of the river's mainstream is expected to amount to 860 million tons this year, with the handling capacity of its ports topping 750 million, including 90 million tons of cargo in foreign trade and 3.1 million TEUs of containers, according to its navigation authorities. Enditem

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