Investment in water projects hits record

Baihetan Hydroelectric Power Station. [Photo provided to]

China invested an unprecedented 1.1 trillion yuan ($143.6 billion) in managing its water resources in the first 11 months of this year and seeks to use the potential of such investments to boost economic growth. I am working hard.

This makes 2022 the calendar year for the biggest investment since the People’s Republic of China was founded in 1949, said Liu Weiping, vice minister for water resources, at a news conference on Wednesday.

According to the ministry, about 802 billion yuan of investment will be made in 2021, up 4.2% from the previous year.

With support from other government agencies, including the National Development and Reform Commission and the State Forest and Grassland Administration, the ministry has accelerated the review and approval process for water management projects, the deputy minister said.

About 25,000 new water management projects started between January and November, compared with 21,233 through 2021, Liu said.

Investments in water resource management “have done their part well in ensuring stable domestic investment and promoting employment,” he said. “It also greatly boosted the development of related upstream and downstream industries.”

As of the end of November, about 2.4 million people were directly employed by the project, more than 1.9 million of them from rural China, Liu said.

He highlighted “significant breakthroughs” in the ministry’s efforts to raise funds through government bonds, bank loans and private capital.

As of the end of November, authorities across the country had managed to raise more than 1.1 trillion yuan for water management projects, he said. is nearly 77% more than total 2021 donations.

Yang Xinyu, head of the ministry’s finance department, said the ministry is participating in detailed research work being carried out by financial institutions to introduce concessional financing for projects.

“The financial institutions involved have provided water management projects with the greatest concessions available in the infrastructure development sector,” he said.

Zhang Xiangwei, head of the ministry’s planning department, said flood control, water diversion, ecological restoration and hydrological monitoring are among the biggest concerns this year.

For example, about 213.2 billion yuan has been invested in the restoration and conservation of river and lake ecosystems, he said. A series of projects have been initiated to strengthen soil and water conservation and discourage groundwater exploitation.

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