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Reviving Silk Road Splender
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  • Uygur women dance at a welcome ceremony for tourists in front of the Kashgar Old City gate on May 27, 2016. The old city is the only well-preserved, Islamic-style labyrinth town in China
  • New employees take part in a commencement ceremony in the Shenzhen Industrial Park on May 8
  • Local women work in an enterprise set up as part of a poverty relief program under an assistance partnership between Kashgar City and Shenzhen on June 30
  • Kashgar City today boasts new houses built with funding from Shenzhen
  • A Uygur worker processes LED light accessories at a workshop of Guanghong Energy Technology Co. in the Shenzhen Industrial Park on May 9
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Kashgar City in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region was once a prosperous trading hub on the ancient Silk Road that linked China, the Middle East and Europe. But today, the entire Kashgar Prefecture, including the city, is one of the least developed localities in Xinjiang.

In 2010, the Central Government launched a renewed pairing assistance program partnering Kashgar City with Shenzhen in south China's Guangdong Province.

Since then, with Shenzhen's support, Kashgar City's GDP has grown at an average annual rate of 13.19 percent.

The Shenzhen Industrial Park in Kashgar City is a signature project of the partnership. By the end of 2016, the park had housed 58 enterprises with a combined investment of 4.2 billion yuan ($623 million), creating 7,800 jobs for local residents.

By 2020, Shenzhen plans to invest 3.98 billion yuan ($590 million) in assistance projects in Kashgar City. In 2017 alone, more than 722 million yuan ($107 million) will go into 39 projects, according to a bilateral plan.

(Photos by Xinhua)

Copyedited by Sudeshna Sarkar

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