China’s insatiable thirst for oil to fuel its rapid economic growth has created a natural resource network snaking through various parts of the world. Some rural areas in China have benefited enormously through petroleum agreements reached with Russia. And Chinese manufacturing shows no signs of slowing as energy and materials continue to be pumped in. But it has not all been smooth. Read the article in Asahi here:
While other countries have been reluctant to invest in politically unstable regimes, China has jumped in–and is now facing the consequences. China’s business style has also created friction among the locals, an issue the National People’s Congress is expected to address after it convenes Saturday.
Last year, China imported 240 million tons of petroleum. It depended on imports for 54 percent of its petroleum in 2010, a sharp increase from 25 percent just a decade earlier.
China’s quest for available energy resources has benefited the small town of Xingan, located along the border with Russia, at the northern tip of China’s Heilongjiang province.
Temperatures can drop to a bone-chilling minus 50 degrees in Xingan. And one community in the town has only 2,000 residents. But its streets are now lined with inns and restaurants.
“Because of the pipeline, we got electricity for the first time last December,” said a woman who operates a restaurant offering local food. “Business is booming with all the people working in the various facilities.”
The pipeline that has brought unprecedented prosperity to the community links China with Siberia.