Tibet benefits greatly from developing west regions


Tibet has witnessed great changes and benefited a great deal from the development of China's west regions, which will mark its 10th anniversary in 2010, according to a senior government official.

China's central government decided in 2000 to pursue the policy of developing the west regions covering the Tibet Autonomous Region, offering a golden opportunity for the region, according to Qiangba Puncog, chairman of the Tibet Autonomous Regional Government, on Monday.

Tibet's gross domestic product (GDP) -- the value of goods and services produced -- has shot up more than 10 percent annually in the last 10 straight years, topping 40 billion yuan by the end of 2009.

Meanwhile, Tibet has improved its infrastructure in its urban and rural areas, thanks to construction of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway and financing from the central government.

Tibetans' livelihood, the top priority in Tibet's development, has improved in an all-round way. The regional government has been launching the affordable housing projects for farmers and herders and made great efforts to advance the countryside, such as water and power supplies, roads, communications, broadcasting and television services and medical services.

The region has also stepped up the growth of its social undertakings, including education, health and culture.

It has met its target to make compulsory education universal for all schooling-age children and to eliminate illiteracy. It has instituted an overall education system including kindergartens, higher education, adult education and education for the handicapped.

The regional government has carried out a medical care reform featuring free medical services, in order to solve medicine shortages and improve medical treatment.

At present, Tibet's culture has been in the best period in terms of inheritage of the tradition and further development. Its intangible cultural relics such as dancing, Tibetan Opera and the Gesar epic tradition have earned a great reputation among audience at home and abroad. A Tibetan language information system used on mobile phones and computers has been introduced.

Furthermore, Tibet's ecological environment has been protected effectively while its economy booms, Qiangba Puncog said.

"When we reveiw the past ten years, we can definitely say that Tibet has gone through the best developing period, with a prosperous economy, social progress, and stable political situation, thanks to the implementation of the strategy on developing the west regions." Puncog noted.

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