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100 Q & A about China's Tibet Part III
    Date:02-16-2009 Source: Author:    

III. Economic Development, People's Livelihood, and Environmental Protection in Tibet

17. What changes have occurred in Tibet's economic development since the Democratic Reform?

A: Since the Democratic Reform in 1959, and especially since 1979, when the reform and opening policy was implemented , Tibet's economic construction has been accelerated dramatically. Industry, agriculture, animal husbandry, telecommunications and commerce have all undergone rapid development. With the support of the central government and people of other areas, Tibet has developed its pillar industries through utilization of its rich resources. Its comprehensive economic force has been fortified, and basic conditions for foreign trade, economic and technological cooperation have undergone great improvement.
A highway system, with the Qinghai-Tibet, Sichuan-Tibet, Xinjiang-Tibet and China-Nepal highways as its main framework has been established, and the Gonggar and Bamda airports are equipped to accommodate Boeing 747, Boeing 757 and A340 aircraft. There are also direct flights from Lhasa to other Chinese provincial capitals, as well as international flights from Lhasa to Katandu.
With the development of the economy and transportation in Tibet, tourism is also starting to boom, and the number of tourists coming to Tibet increased enormously in 2000. During the first half of the year, it received 185,000 international and domestic tourist-an increase of 57 percent over 1999. Among them 35,000 were overseas travelers, representing an increase of 40 percent over the same period of the previous year.
Tibet's most rapid development occurred during the Ninth Five-Year Plan (1996-2000), when its GDP surpassed 10 billion yuan, and it averaged an annual increase of 12.9 percent for 6 consecutive years. Tibet is self-sufficient in grain, edible oil and meat, and a socialist market economy has taken shape.

18. What favorable policies have been implemented in Tibet by the Central Government?

A: Since Tibet is situated in a remote area, and the feudal serfdom was in force for centuries before the democratic reform of 1959, Tibet's development commenced much later, and has advanced at a slower pace compared with the interior area. To speed up the economic development of Tibet and to promote common prosperity, the central government has provided substantial help and support, in terms of human resources, finance, material and technology, as a means to helping it catch up. Meanwhile, the central government has formulated certain favorable policies for Tibet, such as providing financial subsidies and reducing or exempting taxes. The central government has increased investments in economic and social development projects in Tibet to support key projects. Restrictions on foreign trade in Tibet have been relaxed in order to accelerate its economic development, and international aid to Tibet is encouraged. In the farming areas, land is used and run by families, and in the pastoral areas, animals are distributed to individual families, who own and rear them. Prior to 2000, township enterprises in Tibet were exempted from income tax.

19. What are the daily economic and living conditions of the Tibetan people?

A: Before Democratic Reform, upper-class monks, officials and nobles, accounting for less than 5 percent of the local population, owned all farmland, pasture, of the local population, owned all farmland, pasture, forest, mountains, the majority of livestock, and more than 80 percent of the social wealth of Tibet, while serfs and slaves-their chattel-were desperately poor. Since Democratic Reform, the living standards of the people of various ethnic groups in Tibet have improved dramatically, in line with its economic development. At present, most Tibetan residents have no problems making ends meet, and some Tibetan farmers and herdsmen have already achieved a measure of affluence. The net income of Tibetan farmers and herdsmen has increased from 200 yuan in 1978 to 1,320 yuan in 2000, and their patterns of consumption have also changed. More than 80 percent have moved to new houses. The average living cost of Tibetan urban residents increased to 6,385 yuan in 2000-a sharp increased over 1978. Increased income has been used to improve living standards, and to save money in the bank. By the end of 2000, bank deposits in Tibet totaled 4.048 billion yuan.

20. According to the Dalai Clique, "The Chinese Central Government has gained more from Tibet than what it has given." Is this true?

A: Old Tibet was a feudal serfdom society combining religious authority and political power. Due to its backward social system, its harsh plateau climate and remote geographical situation, economic development was restricted and very slow. After the peaceful liberation of Tibet in 1951, helping the Tibetan people to develop their economy and improve their living conditions became the common concern of the central government and the Chinese people, and it is an important facet of China's modernization drive. The Chinese central government has paid particular attention to Tibet's economic development. From the early 1950s until 1997, the central government allocated various subsidies, aid and investment to Tibet, with an accumulated value of more than 40 billion yuan. From 1952 to 1993, the central government provided 19.1 billion yuan in financial subsidies to Tibet, accounting for over 87 percent of its overall revenue. Since 1994, the central government's total annual financial and construction cost allocation to Tibet has been about 3 billion yuan, most of which have been used for social construction and general improvement of the quality of people's lives. All this apart, the central government has organized local governments of other provinces and municipalities and relevant departments to assist and support Tibet's construction by providing aid, in terms of finance, materials, technology and human resources. In 1984, the central government took the decision that 9 inland provinces and municipalities, as well as certain departments under the State Council, should participate in the construction of 43 urgent, medium-sized and small engineering projects in Tibet covered 10 businesses and industries, with a total investment of 480 million yuan. In July 1994, the central government arranged another 62 construction projects in Tibet, and investment was increased from 2.38 billion to 4 billion yuan. In recent years, state ministries and departments, plus 15 inland provinces and municipalities, have instituted 608 aid projects mentioned above, at a total investment of 880 million yuan. To meet the needs in production and life of the Tibetan people, the central government has conveyed large quantities of materials to Tibet, despite harsh conditions and long-distance transportation. From 1959 to 1996, 6.74 million tons of materials were transported to Tibet, including 1.1 million tons of commodity materials, 1.3 million tons of grain and 1.48 million of petroleum. All these facts show that the saying "the Chinese central government has gained more from Tibet than it has given" is groundless.

21. Will, as asserted by the Dalai Lama, the western development policy lead to the colonization of Tibet and deterioration of its ecological environment?

A: The principle of the western development strategy in Tibet is to improve Tibetan people's living standards and uphold sustainable development. Tibet Autonomous Region has formulated a three-stage plan. First, a period of 5 to 10 years will be allotted to achieving an annual growth rate of 10 percent, to improving Tibet's comprehensive strength, to infrastructure construction and ecological environment construction, and to turning its favorable natural resources to economic advantage. Second, a further 10 years will be spent on ensuring an annual growth rate 2 to 3 percent higher than the national average, thereby bringing the Tibetan people up to the same standard of wealth as other Chinese western provinces and autonomous regions, as well as developing its economy at the same pace. Third, by the middle of the 21st century, it is expected that Tibet will have achieved basic modernization. To realize these targets, the regional government has put forward some key points for its development. These include the acceleration of infrastructure construction to release the current "bottle neck" restrictions, and the readjustment of Tibet's industrial structure, and the readjustment of Tibet's industrial structure to improve economic performance. The ecological environment will continue to be protected and enhanced, and agriculture and animal husbandry further developed. As a means to stimulating development of education and science, and promoting general social development, and reform and opening, more time and funds will be devoted to educating and developing Tibet's human resources. From these policies one can see that the regional government has attached great importance to improving people's living standards, protecting the environment and taking the road of sustainable development-all measures which will in no way lead to the colonization of Tibet or deterioration of the environment.

22. What are the main factors that restrict economic development in Tibet?

A: Situated in the hinterland of the Asian continent, Tibet's natural conditions are very harsh. It is bitterly cold, its average altitude is over 4,000 meters, and the air is thin and of a low oxygen content. The amount of time when the temperature climbs above 10 degrees Centigrade is less than half that of Heilongjiang Province, the northernmost province of China. Arable land accounts for only 0.2 to 0.3 percent of Tibet's terrain, and the average arable land per capita is about 0.1 hectares. Such poor topographical conditions severely restrict the agricultural, industrial and commercial development of Tibet, as well as limiting its accessibility. Owing to its history and current conditions, agriculture in Tibet barely meets its own consumption needs, and very few agricultural products can be turned into commodities. Its closed agriculture, low marketing potential and limited means of transportation have hindered the circulation of funds and information, and its comprehensive development and utilization of agricultural resources is therefore severely hampered. Tibet has a monopolistic agricultural structure that does not make effective use of natural agricultural resources. The opportunity to exchange materials and transfer energy between agricultural factors within the region is restricted, and this has weakened the functioning of the local agricultural system and led to low productivity. The agricultural production process in Tibet is in a slow cycle of "low output-low investment, low accumulation-low output." Since the agricultural accumulation is also very low, there are few means through which to enlarge agricultural reproduction. The Tibetan agricultural system does not have the capacity for product diversification, whereby by-products might increase the value of any one agricultural product. Agricultural by-products have neither been processed nor widely sold, thus it is difficult for new industries to emerge, and for natural resources to be turned to economic advantage. Furthermore, agricultural facilities in Tibet are still backward, and the levels of highway transportation and water and electricity supplies are lower than the national average. Basic industries in Tibet are still very weak. There are no railroads, no water transportation and, being far from inland, no sea port. Highway transportation is therefore the lifeline for Tibet's economic development. However, Tibet's land transportation capacity is inadequate, and road conditions are bad, making for high costs, and ultimately restricting the development of its domestic and foreign trade. Post and telecommunications facilities also lag behind, and the capacity for communication is low. The supply of energy and power is also high in cost and small in scale. The backwardness of these "bottle neck industries" restricts the overall agricultural and industrial development in Tibet. The natural environment of Tibet also impedes its industrial development. Its high altitude and low oxygen restrict the local labor force from exerting their full physical and intellectual capacities, thereby further increasing the need for financial input. Its remote geographical situation and inconvenient transportation add to the costs of transportation of raw material, thus affecting the economic performance of the local enterprises. The energy industry in Tibet is extremely weak. Although Tibet has rich natural resources, its conventional energy resources are in short supply, having no oil and very little coal. Water resources there are abundant, but have not been fully developed for utilization. Wind and solar energy can not be used on a large scale due to technological limitations. The energy shortage prevents the normal operation of many enterprises, therefore some construction projects have failed to be initiated. Since the peaceful liberation of Tibet, the central government has given top priority to Tibet's power industry development, but the power supply still falls short of local needs, which has hindered the industrial and economic development of Tibet.

23. When was the onset of modern industries in Tibet?

A: Tibet was ruled as a feudal serfdom before the 1959 Democratic Reform, and its geographical location closed it to other parts of China, as well as the rest of the world. Its social production therefore remained stagnant for a long period, and agriculture and animal husbandry were its economic bases. During the 1920s, the local government of Tibet established industries, such as wool plant, paper mill and hydropower station but due to the lack of skilled technicians, they were often inactive.
Since the democratic reform, great support for industrial development has been forthcoming to Tibet from the central government and people throughout China. Engineers and technicians have been sent from the interior to help develop modern industries in Tibet, and its industrial progress has now entered a new era. In the mid-1950s, the first public power enterprise in Tibet, the Lhasa Power Station, was constructed. Later, the state invested in the construction of the Yangbajain Power Plant, the largest geothermal power plant in China.
After several decades of concerted efforts, modern industries have gradually been strengthened in Tibet, and an industrial system has been formed there, with the power industry, mining, building materials, machinery, pharmaceuticals, processing of agricultural and livestock products, and folk handicrafts as its mainstay. There are now some 260 medium-sized and small enterprises in Tibet with 51,000 employees. The production scale in Tibet has continued to expand, its industrial structure having become more rationalized, and technological standards and the quality of products having gradually improved. The output of Tibet's main industrial products has seen sharp increases, the investment scale has continued to enlarge, and there have been great achievements in improving its infrastructure facilities.

24. How can Tibet improve its highway transportation?

A: Tibet has a vast territory with a sparse population, its geology and topography are diverse and its climate is harsh. Before the peaceful liberation of Tibet in 1951, it had not one modern highway. The Dalai Lama brought a car back from abroad, but it first had to be dismantled, its parts physically carried back to Tibet, and then re-assembled. Tibet's complicated terrain and harsh weather have made road construction a monumental task. On December 25, 1954, soldiers of the People's Liberation Army completed the first highways in Tibet -the Qinghai-Tibet Highway and Sichuan-Tibet Highway. Since then, the government has constructed the Xinjiang-Tibet Highway, the Yunnkan-Tibet Highway, the China-Nepal Highway and trunk and feeder highways within the region. During the Ninth Five-Year Plan period, the central government invested over 4 billion yuan in highway construction in Tibet, completing about 40 projects. More than 1,000 kilometers of roads have either been surfaced with asphalt or newly constructed, and some old roads have been renovated. on the basis of the first phase renovation of the Qinghai-Tibet Highway, the repair of sever bridges on the China-Nepal Highway, and improvement of the Sichuan-Tibet Highway, the government has invested another 600 million yuan in the second phase renovation of the Qinghai-Tibet Highway, while the Sichuan-Tibet, Qinghai-Tibet, Xinjiang-Tibet and Yunnan-Tibet highways have all been renovated. By the end of 1999, Tibet's highway mileage amounted to 24,800 kilometers, and its civilian motor vehicles totaled 47,000, the annual volume of goods transported totaled 2.66 million tons, and the annual volume of passengers transported totaled 2.37 million. For the Tenth Five-Year-Plan, an anticipated 23.7 billion yuan will be invested in highway construction in Tibet, including 47 key projects, and it is planned to renovate and build 6.580 kilometers of highway. The quality of three north-south trunk highways and two east-west trunk highways will be improved, and simple roads will be constructed in 100 townships, 13 frontier check points, and some 600 villages. By the end of 2005, it is expected that Tibet will have 30,000 kilometers of highways, and its transportation will therefore be greatly improved.

25. Why construct the world's longest plateau railway in Tibet?

A: On February 8, the State Council approved the plan to construct the Qinghai-Tibet Railway.
Construction of the Qinghai-Tibet railway has been don the Central Government agenda since the 1950s. The First Surveying and Designing Institute of the Ministry of Railways began carrying out planning of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway in 1956. in May 1974, building of the Xining-Golmud section of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway started, and was completed in May 1984, but building of the Golmud-Lhasa section failed to commence.
Since completion, the Xining-Golmud section has played an important role in the development of Tibet. Today, over 85 percent of materials are transported into and 90 percent out of Tibet through Golmud.
China's railway networks are mainly concentrated in the East and Northeast. Although Tibet occupies one eighth of China's total area, it has no railways. This has greatly restricted the economic development of Tibet. These days, long-distance highway transportation can no longer meet the needs of economic and social development. In order to comply with the needs of western development, construction of a railway in Tibet is imperative. The Qinghai-Tibet Railway is the longest and highest plateau railway in the world. It is 1,925 kilometers long, with 960 kilometers at 4,000 meters above sea level. The railway's highest point, the Tanggula Mountain Pass, is 5,072 meters above sea level.
apart from the Qinghai-Tibet Railway, three other railways are also planned, namely the Gansu-Tibet, the Yunnan-Tibet, and the Sichuan-Tibet Railways. Construction conditions for the Qinghai-Tibet Railway are more advantageous, in terms of its total length, the length and density of bridges and tunnels along the way, the time limit of the project, and the construction conditions, than the other railways. It will take only six years to complete the Qinghai-Tibet Railway, while the time estimated for construction of the other three railways is over 30 years each.
The advent of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway will greatly boost resource exploitation, thereby pushing forward Tibet's economic development, while tourism and cultural exchange between Tibet and the interior and foreign countries will also be greatly enhanced.

26. Is Tibet equipped with modern postal and telecommunications facilities?

A: Tibet began to accelerate its post and telecommunications construction in the 1980s. It now has multiple, up-to-date post and telecommunications capabilities:
Applied optical cable equipment: this has raised Tibet's telecommunication technology to a new height. The optical cable laying projects between Lhasa and Xigaze, Lhasa and Shannan were completed in August 1995. In 1996, the communication optical cable between Bainang and Gyangze in Xigaze Prefecture was constructed and put into use. By the end of August, 1999, Tibet had opened 558 kilometers of first-class and 848 kilometers of second-class long-distance trunk optical cable lines.
Long-distance telecommunication lines: In December 1981, the Lhasa-Xigaze long-distance communication supporting project-Quxu Maintenance Station-was constructed, and a three-channel carrier opened. Later, the Lhasa-Chengdu, Lhasa-Qamdo, and Qamdo-Chengdu wire carrier circuits were opened. A long-distance carrier circuit from Lhasa to Beijing and from Lhasa to other prefectures in Tibet was also put into use. In March 1988, the Lhasa-Xigaze wire telex circuit was opened and began operation.
Microwave communication: Microwave communication technology began to be applied to telephone service in rural areas in August 1993. The first digital microwave circuit in Tibet-from Bayi Town to Nyingchi county seat, was opened in April 1996, which filled the blank in digital microwave circuit in Tibet.
Mobile communication: Mobile communication mainly focuses on the construction of mobile phones and paging systems. In the early 1990s, paging systems were established successively in the capitals of Xigaze, Nyingchi, Shannan, Qamdo, Nagqu and Ngari prefectures. The Lhasa Telecommunications Bureau analogue mobile telephone system, and the mobile communications experimental system, based on Motorola's technology, and constructed by Xigaze Prefecture Post Office, were both put into operation at this time. In December 1999, Shiquanhe Town, the seat of Ngari Prefecture Administrative Office, opened the GSM mobile telephone system and achieved dual coverage of both analogue and digital networks. By May 2000, Tibet had an exchange capacity of 115,000 lines, of which, GSM exchange capacity accounted for 97,000 lines. There were 38,449 mobile telephone users, of which, GSM users accounted for 34,883; and 63 base stations, perceptibly raising the popularization rate of mobile telephones. People in Lhasa can now dial direct to anywhere in China, and to more than 180 countries and regions worldwide.
Lhasa operates express mail and EMS business with nearly 200 large and medium-sized cities in China. International mails are sent to neighboring countries via Zham of Xigaze, and Yadong County.

27. What problems have been resolved by the 62 aid-Tibet projects initiated by the Central Government?

A: The 62 aid-Tibet projects, initiated by the Central Government, and supported by provinces and municipalities in the hinterland, began in 1994 and were concluded by 2000. these projects, with a total investment of 4 billion yuan, cover the whole of Tibet and involve fields closely related to the life and work of Tibetan people, such as energy (15 projects), transportation and communication infrastructure facilities (7 projects); industry (6 projects); agriculture and water conservancy (13 projects); municipal construction, culture, education and medicare (21 projects). Thirteen out of the 62 projects fall under the categories of agriculture, animal husbandry, forestry, water conservancy, and grain and oil processing, with a total investment of 600 million yuan. The Manla Water Control Project is the largest among the 62 projects. Besides irrigation, it also generates other benefits, including power generation and flood prevention. The construction of the Manla Water Control Project has regulated the irrigation of 100,000 hectares of farmland in the Nyang Qu River Valley, and increased irrigation area by 40,000 hectares of grassland and forests, thereby enhancing Tibet's food production potential. The agriculture popularization system program, aided by the Ministry of Agriculture, has laid a solid foundation for developing advantageous, high-yield, and high efficient agriculture, as well as for regulating the internal structure of agriculture, and accelerating the agricultural development based on scientific and technological progress in Tibet. Its high-quality rape processing project makes Tibet self-sufficient in edible oil supply and enables it to carry out in-depth development of its agricultural economy. The northwestern Tibet cashmere base, constructed with the aid of the Ministry of Agriculture, has greatly spurred the development of counties engaged in animal husbandry through constructing infrastructure facilities, training herdsmen, establishing a purchase-sale system, and developing high quality white cashmere, which has won first prize at the national agriculture exposition. Energy, transportation, and post and telecommunications infrastructure facilities are important factors as regards Tibet's economic development, and are, therefore, key fields for investment. Upon completion of the 62 projects, the installed capacity of hydroelectric generation was increased by 30,000 kilowatts, with an annual increase of generated energy of 166 million kilowatts/hour, and the telephone exchange capacity increased by 30,000 lines. The industrial development has provided more employment opportunities, consequently improving Tibetan living standards. The capacity of urban daily water supply increased by 16,000 tons, and hospital beds increased by 400, further guaranteeing local people's living standards, as well as their medical and health services. The completion of the educational program has increased middle school enrollment by 4,900 students annually. The 62 projects full take in to account Tibetan people's living environment. The construction of broadcasting and television receiving stations at township level involved 493 townships and 57 highway maintenance squads. At present, over 20 townships use a solar-powered broadcasting receiving system, each receiving station covers a radiation area of 7 kilometers. Xigaze is the second largest city in Tibet Autonomous Region, and seriously lacked potable water for a long period of time. Since the water supply project, aided by Shanghai Municipality, was constructed and put into operation, people have had convenient access to tap water. Many projects have now begun to bring benefits to people. The optical cables laid between Shannan and Xigaze, and between Lhasa and Xigaze also draw the counties along the way into the optical cable telecommunication network. The establishment of five middle schools, including the Xigaze No. 2 Middle School, and the Lhair County Middle School, greatly relieved the demands on school enrollment in these areas. Apart from finance, the 62 projects also included expertise aid. The state and interior provinces sent numerous technological staff to work in Tibet and help with the training of Tibetan technicians and management personnel.

28. What are the goals of the 'Yi Jiang Liang He' agricultural comprehensive development project?

A: The development of the middle reaches of the 'Yi Jiang Liang He' (the Yarlung Zangbo River, the Lhasa River, and the Nyang Qu River) is the largest agricultural comprehensive development program so far, and calls for the largest investment. The project covders 18 counties in Lhasa, Shannan, and Xigaze, totaling 65,700 square kilometers, with a population accounting for 36 percent of the total population of Tibet. The goals of this comprehensive development projects are to turn Tibet into a commodity grain base, a livestock products base, a light industry base and food processing base, and a science and technology demonstration and popularization base. This will entail an investment of 1 billion yuan. The project also includes the building of irrigation works, which will establish a solid foundation for ecological protection and agricultural production and enable the utilization of hitherto low-yield farmland and grassland as well as the planting of trees. It will increase grain production capacity by 150 million kilograms and meat production capacity by 24 million kilograms. More than 800,000 Tibetan people have participated in this program of 40 projects, including 18 water conservancy projects, seven agricultural projects, 10 animal husbandry projects, and five forestry projects. On completion of these projects, 100,000 hectares of cultivated area (accounting for 45.6 percent of the region's total) and 4.5 million hectares of grassland will benefit, while the total installed capacity of power generation will amount to 250,000 kilowatts.

29. What laws and regulations concerning environmental protection are enforced in Tibet?

A: The government of Tibet Autonomous Region has always attached great importance to the implementation of the state policy of environmental protection, and of rational utilization of natural resources. It has also put into practice the principle of synchronous planning, execution and development of economic construction, urban and rural construction, and environmental construction. In recent years, the government and the standing committee of Tibet Autonomous Region have, in line with the actual situation, promulgated a series of local regulations and administrative laws concerning environmental protection, including The Regulations of Tibet Autonomous Region on Environmental Protection, The Regulations of Tibet Autonomous Region on Forest Protection, Interim Regulations of Tibet Autonomous Region on Grassland Management, Notice of the People's Government of Tibet Autonomous Region on the Protection of Aquatic Resources, and Measures for the Administration of Environment Protection on Construction Programs of Tibet Autonomous Region. these laws and regulations involve wild life conservation, grassland management, water resource protection, mining management, and urban construction management.

30. How many nature reserves are there in Tibet?

A: Since the 1970s,Tibet has designated areas that are the habitat of rare wildlife as nature reserves, and expanded financial input for the protection of wild animals, and plant resources. The designation of nature reserves began in the 1980s. From 1982 to 1985, the government of Tibet Autonomous Region successively approved the establishment of seven nature reserves, including Medog, Zayu, Bomegang, Pagqi Village of Nyingchi County, Zham Ravin in Nyalam County, Jiangcun Village in Gyirong County, and Mount Qomolangma. The Medog and Mount Qomolangma nature reserves are both listed as national nature reserves. In 1993, Tibet approved the establishment of another six nature reserves, including Qangtang, Xainzakun, Yanjing of Markam County, and Painbo of Lhunzhub County. Their main purpose is to protect endangered wildlife and their ecological environment. The Qangtang Nature Reserve, covering an area of 24,000 square kilometers, is the world's largest continental nature reserve, and has recently been approved by the Chinese government as a national nature reserve. These 13 nature reserves cover 32,500 square kilometers, accounting for 26.5 percent of Tibet's total land mass, and are equivalent in area to that of Poland or Finland.
In 2000, the government of Tibet Autonomous Region decided to invest 130 million yuan in establishing three nature reserves for earth forest in Zanda County, the pillow Lava in Xigaze County, and geothermal geysers in Ngamring County. After the State Council approved the Mount Qonmolangma, Yarlung Zangbo Grand Canyon, and Qangtang nature reserves, the regional government plans to propose the Yunnan Golden Monkey Nature Reserve in Mankam County, and the Cibagou Nature Reserve in Zayu County as national nature reserves.

31. Would you please give some background information on the Potala Palace, the first world heritage site in Tibet designated by UNESCO?

A: The Potala was built during the reign of Tibetan King Songtsan Gambo at the time of the Tang Dynasty (61-907), and was rebuilt in the early Qing Dynasty(1644-1911) by the fifth Dalai Lama Ngawang Lozang Gyatso. Reconstruction was completed in the late Qing Dynasty during the reignof the 13th Dalai Lama Tupden Gyatso. Reconstruction was completed in the late Qing Dynasty during the reign of the 13th Dalai Lama Tupden Gyatso. It is a rare and treasured facet of Tibetan cultural heritage, as well as a gem in the repository of Chinese civilization, and is known as the "shining pearl of the snowland." The Potala Palace, a landmark synonymous with Lhasa, reflects the highest artistic achievements of the Tibetan ethnic group in terms of architecture, painting, sculpture and casting. It also epitomizes the cultural exchanges of the Han and Tibetan people, combining the architectural techniques of both ethnic groups.
The Potala Palace covers a total area of 360,000 square meters, with a floor space of 130,000 square meters, and a total of 2,000 rooms. It has 34 large Buddha halls, which house numerous priceless cultural relics. Construction of the stupa that holds the remains of the fifth Dalai Lama entailed 110,000 taels of gold and multifarious precious stones. The palace's ten warehouses contain a wealth of rare cultural relics.
The Chinese government is particularly concerned about effective protection and management of the Potala Palace, and in the 1990s invested 50 million yuan in large-scale renovation that lasted five years. On February 17, 1994, the Potala Palace was officially designated as a World heritage site. In 1997, with the approval of the Standing Committee of the People's Congress of Tibet Autonomous Region, the "Measures for Protection and Management of the Potala Palace" was issued, based upon which various regulations and responsibility systems have since been perfected.

32. The Chinese government has been criticized for carrying out nuclear testing in Tibet, for damaging the local environment by its construction of water and electricity projects, and for draining the water from Holy lake. It has also come under fire for construction of buildings that are said to violate Tibetan traditions, and for excessive tree felling. Do these criticisms have any foundation?

A: These accusations are entirely groundless. The Chinese government has never carried out nuclear testing or Dumped nuclear waste in Tibet. The government of Tibet Autonomous Region has always attached great importance to the state policy of environmental protection and rational exploitation and use of natural resources, and has, in recent years, promulgated a series of local laws and administrative regulations for this purpose. The autonomous region's Environmental Protection Committee was founded in 1990, and has adopted numerous measures to protect forest as well as being the motivating force behind tree-planting projects. Since the 1960s, Tibet Autonomous Region has planted a total of 70 million trees and closed about 140,000 hectares of hillsides to livestock grazing and fuel gathering to facilitate afforestation every year. The local government also pays great attention to the cultivation of farmland and pasture, and to water conservancy projects. It has constructed more than 13,000 irrigation canals and over 5,200 reservoirs of different sizes, with a total storage capacity of over 270 million cubic meters. There is now a total of 202,000 hectares of irrigated grassland. Since the 1970s, Tibet has increased its financial input for the protection of wildlife and plant resources. The region now has 13 nature reserves, accounting for 26.5 percent of the total area of Tibet Autonomous Region.
Pollution from industry and other sources are minimal in Tibet, and there has never been any kind of accident resulting in environmental pollution. Tibet has no acid rain. According to detailed monitoring and investigation, Tibet's environment has maintained a good condition. the air and water have negligible levels of pollution, and environmental radiation is sin a normal scale. No radiation pollution emanates from man-made factors.

33. The ecological environment on plateau is very fragile. What measures has Tibet taken to control environmental pollution?

A: In 1979, the leading group of environmental protection of Tibet Autonomous Region was founded, marking the standardization of Tibetan environmental protection undertakings. The Tibet Autonomous Region Environmental Protection Committee, established in 1990, has further consolidated the unified leadership regarding Tibet's environmental protection. Tibet's environmental protection undertakings have now begun to take shape, with environmental protection bureaus established at autonomous region level as well as in various prefectures. There are also 12 professional environmental protection institutes, all staffed by professional managerial and technological personnel. Investment in pollution control has increased dramatically. To eliminate Lhasa's industrial smoke and dust alone 3 million yuan has been invested.
In 1990, an up-to-date environmental monitoring building, the first of its kind in Tibet, was constructed in Lhasa, with 7 sub-monitoring stations around the city. The building is equipped with the most advanced environmental monitoring apparatus. The environmental monitoring station in Xigaze, the second largest city in Tibet, was constructed and put into operation in 1993. The Qamdo environmental monitoring station, located in eastern Tibet, is under construction. A monitoring network covering the whole of Tibet has taken shape.
Construction projects that may cause damage to the environment are subject to two systems: an "environment impact evaluation" system, and a system necessitating design, construction, and operation of both the principal project and pollution control facilities. In 1988, the relevant local departments closed a number of small pollutant enterprises, and required other pollutant enterprises to make necessary modifications within a designated period of time. It also published a telephone number for reporting environmental offenses in the Tibet Daily, and called on the public to participate in environmental monitoring.
While implementing a rational urban construction plan and afforestation policy, the local government also attaches great importance to disseminating information on environmental protection through the media and various other activities.
In recent years, the relevant technological and research departments have conducted investigations on certain important issues, such as the source of industrial pollution in Tibet, and resources of flora and fauna.

34. What is the "Natural Forest Protection Project"?

A: The "Natural Forest Protection Project" of Tibet is an important facet of an afforestation project launched by the Chinese government on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River, and upper and middle reaches of the Yellow River. It is also an important part of the western development strategy.
In recent years, there has been an increase in natural disasters and abnormal climate. This has mainly been caused by the reduction of vegetation coverage and consequent soil erosion on the upper reaches of certain rivers. The Central Government has therefore taken the decision to invest 103.5 billion yuan in a natural forest protection project, which commenced in 2000. The project covers a total of 770 counties in 13 provinces (municipalities, autonomous regions), on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River and the upper and middle reaches of the Yellow River.
Major tasks within the project include halting the felling of natural forests in the project area; strengthening the management and protection of forest resources; exerting greater efforts in planting trees and closing hillsides to facilitate afforestation; accelerating afforestation on barren land and mountains in the project areas; raising the grassland and forest coverage; relocating inhibitants living in forest areas; and strengthening infrastructure construction of ecological protection.

35. In the new century, facing the western development and increasing energy demands, what effective environmental protection measures will the government promote?

A: In 2000, Tibet promulgated the Ecological Environment Construction Plan (2000-2050). According to this plan, in 50 years Tibet will invest 22.7 billion yuan in construction of the local ecological environment, with a total of 160 key construction projects. This is the largest ecological environment construction plan in Tibet's history.
Meanwhile, Tibet has also put forward a spectacular "green plan," including a project for protection of natural forests on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River in Mankarm County, Qamdo Prefecture, and the Yarlung Zangbo River ecological construction project in Xigaze Prefecture.
Apart from the natural forest protection project on the upper reaches of the Yangze River, extensive ecological environment construction in Tibet also includes the comprehensive environmental protection and cultivation of ecological agriculture in the middle reaches of the Yarlung Zangbo River; the restoration of degenerated grasslands; the control of soil erosion and natural forest protection in eastern Tibet; and the grassland environment construction in northeastern and northern Tibet.
Tibet is known as the "roof of the world." Its high altitude and vast expanses of plateau make it the starting point for the East Asia monsoon climate and the regulator of the global climate. It is also the source of a large number of Chinese rivers. Construction and protection of the ecological environment in this area is vital to the ecological environment of entire China.

36. Does Tibet have a long-term ecological environment construction plan?

A: Tibet plans to invest 22.7 billion yuan in 160 key projects in the coming 50 years, which are to be completed in three stages.
In 2000, Tibet published the 2000-2050 Ecological Environment construction Plan. According to this plan, Tibet will center on the comprehensive improvement of the ecological environment, the construction of eco-agriculture, and restoration of grassland in the middle reaches of the yarlung Zangbo River. Control of soil erosion and protection of natural forests in eastern Tibet, ecological grassland environment construction in northeastern and northern Tibet, and control of grassland desertification, degeneration and alkalization will be carried out at the same time. The ultimate aim is to form a virtuous circle of utilization of natural resources and evolution of ecological environment.

37. What is the content of the two largest ecological environment construction projects already started in Tibet?

A: The ecological environment construction project in the middle reaches of the Yarlung Zangbo River with a total planned investment of 7.22 billion yuan, has embarked on harnessing desertification. While its main focus is on protecting the mountain shrubwood on both sides of the river, the project also includes planting 352,000 hectares of trees and grass along the river valley. According to the progress of the first-stage work, the ecological environment construction program in Jomda, Gonjo, and Markam counties on the upper reaches of the Yangtze River, with a total planned investment of 1.42 billion yuan, has started the natural forest protection project. Apart from prohibiting the felling of natural forest, the authorities concerned will also give priority to planting trees and closing hillsides to facilitate afforestation within the project area, while at the same time accelerating the afforestation of barren land and mountains and strengthening the infrastructure construction for ecological environment protection.

38. How will Tibet make use of solar energy to raise people's living standard and protect the environment?

A: The per capita utilization of electricity in Tibet is far lower than the national average. The region lacks coal, and it is therefore impossible to develop thermal power. The existing large and medium-sized hydroelectricity stations only generate enough electricity to satisfy the needs of Tibet's dense urban population, while farmers and herdsmen scattered in remote mountain areas must manage without. However, with its dry climate, thin air, negligible cloud, and annual 3,000 hours of sunshine, Tibet is especially suitable for developing solar energy.
Tibet began to develop solar energy in the 1980s. By transforming solar energy into heat and electricity, a large number of farmers and herdsmen living in remote mountain areas now enjoy the convenience of electricity, and no longer need to use butter lamps for light, or dried yak dung and firewood for cooking fuel. Moreover, hey can also enjoy the convenience of all kinds of household electric appliances. Today, the development and utilization of solar energy in Tibet ranks top nationwide.
In 1981, Tibet established its solar energy research institute, with the aim of developing and utilizing solar energy. Since the 1990s, Tibet has built 7 large scale solar power stations at the county level and a number of smaller stations subsidized by the central government. The total installed capacity of the region's photoelectric facilities has now reached a level of over 2,000 kilowatts. It constructed a solar water heater of 85,000 square meter capacity (calculated according to the surface area of equipment that absorbs light), k91,000 solar stoves and a large number of solar greenhouses. The installed capacity of the largest solar power station in Tibet is 100 kilowatts. The price of the smaller solar power stations is between 1,200 yuan and 1,800 yuan each-enough to fuel two energy-saving light bulbs and a small TV set. This small-scale equipment is especially suitable for the independent use of households that are not ostensibly part of a community.
In recent years, Tibet has also completed dozens of key scientific research programs concerning the utilization and development of solar energy at state and autonomous region levels. The "Tibetan solar energy resource comprehensive development and utilization" program was awarded a second national Spark Prize, and the "solar energy metal phase transformation heat accumulator" was awarded the third national invention prize.
In drafting the Tenth Five- Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development, Tibet Autonomous Region suggested that the development of solar energy and photoelectric undertakings should be given high priority as a means to supplying electricity to farmers and herdsmen. As a new, regenerative, clean, and environmentally friendly energy source, solar energy has a broad scope for further development in Tibet.

39. What are the most important strategic points for Tibet in the process of western development?

A: First, adjusting the industrial structure. Developing characteristic, water-saving, ecologically conscious agriculture and developing animal husbandry in farming areas. Attention must also be paid to accelerating the readjustment of industrial structure, of upgrading the processing and handicraft industries through high technology and advanced applicable technologies, and raising the capacity for technological innovation, as well as supporting the development of enterprises with market potential. Initiative should be taken in developing new and high technology industries and high technology industries and speeding up the development of the tertiary industries including the tourism industry.
Second, developing high-yield, high-quality and high-efficiency agriculture. Do a good job on the comprehensive agricultural development program along the Yarlung Zangbo, lthe Lhasa and the Nyang Qu rivers, and on planning and construction of the northern Tibet animal husbandry comprehensive development zone, and the southeastern Tibet forest, fruit, tea and herbal medicine comprehensive development zone.
Third, accelerating infrastructure construction. Building the China-Nepal, Qinghai-Tibet, Sichuan-Tibet and Xinjian-Tibet highways and trunk roads from Lhasa to various prefectures in Tibet, giving priority to the construcion of county level and frontier roads. Commencing railway construction in Tibet as early as possible, opening new airlines and constructing new airports. Developing hydroelectricity and other energy resources including terrestrial heat, solar energy and wind power, and concentrating on the development of optical fiber and satellite communication.
Fourth, strengthening construction of the ecological environment, particularly environmental protection and comprehensive harnessing of the upper reaches of the Yangtze River and the Yarlung Zangbo River Valley. Carrying out the natural forests protection project along the three rivers in Qamdo, intensifying the efforts in fighting desertification, and returning some sloping fields and flood land to forests or pastures.
Fifth, disseminating the benefits of developing and utilizing natural resources and developing advantageous industries. Vigorously exploiting plateau biological resources and speeding up the pace of prospecting and developing important mineral resources.
Sixth, developing small towns around Lhasa, the seats of prefectures and counties, some communication hubs and important ports, and making them main commodity distribution and communication centers, and centers for absorbing surplus rural laborers. These small towns will be the new points of economic growth for Tibet.

40. What was the growth rate of Tibet's economy in 2000?

A: In 2000, the national economy of Tibet Autonomous Region achieved rapid, sustained and healthy development, and completed the Ninth Five Year Plan and development goals set at the Third Forum on the Work of Tibet of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China. According to estimates, the autonomous region achieved a GDP of 11.65 billion yuan in 2000, an increase of 9.3 percent over the previous year. In 2000, the net per capita income of farmers and herdsmen was 1,25 yuan and the disposable personal income (DPI) of urban citizens was 6,385 yuan, an increase of 5.3 percent and 6.5 percent respectively over the previous year.
Tibet has carried out comprehensive development in agriculture and animal husbandry, and has vigorously promoted technology applications. Structural adjustment in agriculture and animal husbandry has been accelerated. In 2000, the output of grain reached a level of 946,700 tons, a bumper harvest for the 13th year in succession. Animal husbandry also achieved sustained growth, with meat and milk production increasing by 2.8 percent and 5.4 percent and 5.4 percent respectively. The output value of township enterprises reached 770 million yuan and the income from diversified economy is estimated to reach 900 million yuan, an increase of 18.5 percent and 12.5 percent respectively.
The management of Tibet's industrial enterprises was greatly enhanced. In 2000 the autonomous region realized a total industrial output value of 1.792 billion yuan, an increase of 8.2 percent over the previous year. The sales of major industrial products, such as electric power and beer, also increased increased to a certain degree compared with the previous year. Targets for the reform of state-owned enterprises were basically realized.
The tertiary industry continued to develop rapidly, achieving an added value of 5.38 billion yuan, an increase of 12.2 percent over the previous year. The total business volume of the region's posts and telecommunications increased 3.3 percent over the previous year. Tibet received altogether 550,000 Chinese and overseas tourists in 2000, achieving a total business income of 630 million yuan, an increase of 22 percent and 11 percent respectively over the previous year. The total volume of imports and exports reached US$ 132 million, and exports increased 30.2 percent.
Infrastructure construction was strengthened, and the construction of key projects proceeded smoothly. Total investment in fixed assets realized 6.658 billion yuan, an increase of 17.6 percent over the previous year. A series of key projects concerning energy, transportation, communications, and water conservancy were constructed and put into operation.

41. What are the development goals for the coming 50 years in Tibet?

A: In drafting the overall plan and setting the objectives for the development of Tibet in the coming 50 years, the government of Tibet Autonomous Region places emphasis on the development of five characteristic industries, including tourism, Tibetan medicine, and mining. At the same time, it will create a more favorable environment to attract foreign investors to attract foreign investors to participate in the development and construction of Tibet.
Tibet is an active facet of western development. It will, based on its own resources and production capacity, follow the principles of the market economy and adopt a feasible policy to attract capital for exploitation of resources and economic development in Tibet.
The development goal for Tibet is to basically realize modernization within 50 years. It aims to build Tibet into the world's largest eco-environmental protection base, China's largest Tibetan medicine scientific research center and export base, and the most important precious metal and rare metal base in western China, making it a gateway for trading with South Asian countries.

42. What will be the changes in Tibet's policy of opening up to domestic and overseas markets?

A: Tibet will seize the opportunity offered by western development to make five changes to its policies concerning opening up to domestic and overseas markets. Its aim is to make full use of resources, market, and human resources to accelerate Tibet's social and economic development. The five changes are:
Changing the relationship between Tibet and the interior from one of merely receiving aid to that of reciprocal cooperation. Improving its investment environment with the help of the whole nation, and integrating Tibet's advantages in resources with the capital, talent, technology and information advantages of the interior, to establish a group of profit-making enterprises by cooperation and joint management.
Changing single-way opening to two-way opening. While expanding opening to the interior, Tibet should also make use of the extensive market in the interior and join the country's united market. By so doing, Tibet may constantly expand sales of its products and further develop its characteristic industries, and actively take part in investment activities in the interior.
Changing from unitary opening to overall opening. Instead of opening its commodity and labor markets only, Tibet will also open its capital and technological markets. Meanwhile, Tibet will open wider in the fields of science, technology, education and culture.
Besides offering favorable policies, Tibet will also pay great attention to optimizing its investment environment as a whole, and will continue to accelerate infrastructure construction in areas such as transportation, communications and energy.
While emphasizing its opening up to the domestic market, Tibet will also enhance its opening up to the international market. It will make full use of its geo-advantages and actively carry out trade with neighboring countries, giving full play to the utilization of foreign investment.

43. How are Tibet's import and export sector going?

A: The business relationship between Tibet and bordering India, Nepal, Myanmar, Bhutan and Sikkim dates far back in history, and its foreign trade sector has seen marked progress since Tibet's democratic reform. The border trade, originally carried out on a barter basis, has progressed into one of currency-settlement and in various modes such as processing trade, ocean trade, Sino-foreign equity and contractual joint ventures and transhipment.
In recent years Tibet Autonomous Region has taken full advantage of the preferential policies granted by the state to promote its export of industrial products, mainly ethic handicrafts, and livestock products. As a result, its state-owned foreign trade enterprises and border trade have undergone extensive development. There are at present 28 border markets in Tibet, the main centers being in Zham and Burang.
The development of foreign trade has brought great benefits to Tibet and its people. The region now has 152 foreign trade enterprises, including 65 overseas-funded enterprises and 41 enterprises licensed to engage in ocean trade, all of which may also engage in border trade. There are moreover 22 foreign trade and economic cooperation enterprises registered in Tibet. In 1998 Tibet's import and export volume reached 936 million yuan.
Over the past 20 years the region's exports have risen at a rate much higher than of GNP growth. The export volume of Tibet rocketed from 2.72 million yuan in 1979 to 610 million yuan in 1998-a 224-fold increase, and a favorable trade balance has been maintained in recent years. In 1995 Tibet achieved an export surplus for the first time, and in 1998 its export volume accounted for 65 percent of the region's total volume of imports and exports, with a favorable balance of 330 million yuan.
The structure of foreign trade in Tibet has also undergone dramatic changes. Since 1985 the region has shifted its focus from overland border trade to ocean trade. Livestock products and other primary products constitute the lion's share of Tibet's exports.

44. has Tibet established a foreign trade system compatible with international norms?

A: With the deepening of China's structural reform of foreign economy and trade, Tibet Autonomous Region has gradually established a foreign trade operational mechanism that conform to eign trade operational mechanism that conforms to international norms. In 1994 Tibet launched a unitary floating exchange rate system based on supply and demand of the market. Under this system, foreign currency-earning enterprises can deal directly from the bank in settlement of foreign exchange transactions. Reform has commenced among state-owned foreign trade and economic enterprises according to the requirements of modern enterprise system. State-owned enterprises are turned from state plan executors to dealers of import and export commodities. Foreign trade licenses are granted to eligible enterprises in the production and circulation sectors, and a batch of comprehensive trading companies have been established.

45. In which sectors is foreign investment expected in Tibet?

A: The sectors in which foreign investment is particularly encouraged by the government of Tibet Authonomous Region include energy, water conservancy and communications, public utilities, construction, light industry, textiles, mechanical and electrical equipment, foodstuffs, breeding and cultivation, processing, exploitation of agriculture, forestry and animal husbandry, new-and hi-tech industries and new-emerging industries. Foreign investors can set up foreign-funded enterprises, Sino-foreign joint ventures or economic and technical cooperation. Mid-and long-term investment projects and lucrative comprehensive exploitation projects are most welcomed in Tibet.
Tibet's pillar industries open to foreign investment are: tourism, exploitation and utilization of tourism and natural resources; renovation and mass production of traditional Tibetan medicines, research and development of new medicines, cultivation and management of herbal plants; deep processing of forest products; development and utilization of forest resources; mining and geological prospecting; extraction and processing of mineral resources; processing of agricultural and livestock products, production of Tibetan handicrafts; and development and production of new building materials.
Self-employed workers and private enterprises are also encouraged by the government of Tibet Autonomous Region to set up Sino-foreign equity or contractual joint ventures, and to go into the processing business with supplied materials or designs, assembling supplied parts, compensatory trade and frontier trade. All enterprises with foreign investment approved by the government enjoy the preferential policies offered by the state and the autonomous region.

46. How is investment invitation work going in Tibet?

A: At present more than 50 enterprises with foreign investment have been approved in Tibet, investors coming from the US, Japan, Germany, Malaysia, Nepal and Macao and Hong Kong Special Administrative Regions.
At the 2000 Tibet Trade Fair held in Hong Kong 13 investment intent agreements and 14 export agreements were reached, with a total contractual investment of US $411 million and an export volume of US $44.48 million. The contractual foreign investment and foreign aid amounted to US $68.68 million, of which 87 million yuan has been put in place.

47. What international aid projects have been undertaken in Tibet?

A: Certain international organizations and foreign countries have begun economic cooperation with Tibet. International aid projects launched include: US $4 million aid for the Yangbajain geothermal power station provided by the United Nations Development Program in 1981; comprehensive agricultural development projects in four counties in the Lhasa River Valley to combat drought and improve irrigation, launched in 1989, with id from the United Nations World Food Program; and US $3.215 million aid from UNICEF for ten projects, including the Tibet Women and Children Health Center. In 1995 INDP decided to offer US $822,000 AID TO Nyalam, Tingri, Dinggye and Gyirong counties in the Qomolangma Nature Reserve to fund projects covering agriculture, housing, school, wind power generation and household handicrafts.

48. What preferential policies does Tibet Autonomous Region offer to enterprises with foreign investment?

A: The government of Tibet Autonomous Region has promulgated its Provisions and Supplementary provisions of the Government of Tibet Autonomous Region on Inviting Merchants and Attracting Investment. According to the two documents, investment in the encouraged sectors merits preferential treatment in legal guarantees, foreign trade operation and land policies.
The Supplementary provisions, enacted at the end of 2000, apply to all enterprises and projects in Tibet that conform to the industrial guidelines of the region, with an investment worth over 20 percent of the net assets. Operations may be established by enterprises, economic organizations or individuals from overseas, Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan or other provinces of China. The supplementary Provisions stipulate that outside investors may also enjoy the preferential financial policies granted to Tibet Autonomous Region by the central government. In addition, the formalities for company registration are simple in Tibet; and verification and registration of foreign-funded companies, Sino-foreign equity joint ventures, Sino-foreign contractual joint ventures, limited companies and group companies can be completed within 10 to 15 days from the date of receiving all required application documents.

49. What foreign services can the local government of Tibet provide?

A: Lhasa Customhouse is a branch of the China general Administration of Customs in Tibet, and under its jurisdiction are the Xigaze, Nyalam, Shiquanhe and Gyirong Customhouses, and it also has an office in Lhasa Post Office. The Lhasa Customhouse takes charge of clearance formalities for foreigners and overseas Tibetan compatriots entering and leaving China by Lhasa's Konggar airport.
The General Administration of Customs has issued new, more flexible stipulations regarding the supervision and control of the luggage of overseas Tibetans entering and leaving China. The goods imported and exported through Lhasa Customs are subject to the Customs Import and Export Tariff Regulation of the People's Republic of China, and Measures for Levy of Customs Import Tariff in Tibet of the People's Republic of China. The Lhasa Customhouse levies duty According to the 21-item and low-rate import tariff regulations of Tibet on goods imprted for sale within Tibet Autonomous Region.
The Administration for the Inspection of Import and Export Commodities under the government of Tibet autonomous Region conducts technical inspection of imported and exported goods. Its headquarters are in Zham, and it has branches in Chengdu City in Sichuan Province and Golmud City in Qinghai Province.
The Lhasa Animal and Plant Quarantine Institute is the animal and plant quarantine organ of the state in Tibet Autonomous Region. It has four branches in Zham, Bulang, Gyirong and Riwo respectively, and has offices at Konggar Airport and the Lhasa International Post Exchange Office. According to the Law of Exit-Entry Quarantine for Animals and Plants of the People's Republic of China, the Lhasa Animal and Plant Quarantine Institute implements exit-entry quarantine procedures on the following articles: live animals, animal products, cultivated plants, wild plants and their products or other articles under quarantine; means of transport from animal or plant epidemic-stricken areas.

50. Where can foreign investors consult on Tibet's business affairs?

A: Foreign investors can consult with government departments in charge of agriculture, industry, mining, communication, and tourism through the Economic Coordination Committee of Tibet Autonomous Region, and other relative business consultative agents, who will offer them detailed materials regarding projects in which they are interested.

51. How can foreign investors apply for the establishment o investment projects in Tibet?

A: Foreign investors applying for the establishment of enterprises in Tibet can, through the Economic Coordination Committee of Tibet, confer with consultative agents, including the Department of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, and the Administration for Industry and Commerce. These offices provide and all-round application service to clients. Foreign investors can also apply independently.

52. What documentation is required when applying for foreign investment projects?

A: The documents are: application form; project proposals; feasibility report; agreement of contract for equity joint ventures or contractual joint ventures; each party's business license, credit certificate issued by a bank and certified identification of a legal person; name list of candidates for president, vice president and directors nominated by all parties of the equity joint venture; other relevant documents and certificates.
For in vestment in airlines, tourist charter flight companies, the tobacco industry, travel agencies, mining, retail, foreign trade, and financial sectors, investors should apply in advance for examination and approval of the relevant departments of Tibet Autonomous Region, including the Tibet Civil Aviation Administration, the Tobacco Monopoly Administration, the Department of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation, Domestic Trade Bureau, Tourism Administration, Lhasa Branch of the people's Bank of China, and Geological and Mining Administration. After verification these departments will report to the state for approval.
Prefectures, cities or responsible departments are authorized to verify and approve projects with an investment below the level of 10 million yuan. For projects concerning state security, public health, eco-environmental protection and resource monopolies, investors should apply to the Development Planning Commission of Tibet Autonomous Region for approval.

53. What documentation is required for enterprise registration in Tibet?

 A: The documents are: registration application signed by the sponsors of the enterprise; statute, contract and approval documents or certificates issued by the examining and approving department (or responsible department); approval documentation; credit certification, certification regarding capital verification or secured capital certification; a name list of the board of directors, powers of attorney or identity certification for the directors, president, vice president or other legal persons; certification of use for residence and business premises; other relevant documents and certificates.
For establishment of branches or agencies of an enterprise, investors should submit the following documents: registration application signed by president of the enterprise; approval documents issued by the original registration department; the board resolution of the enterprise; copy of the enterprise business license; powers of attorney for heads of the enterprise; and other relative documents and certificates.

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