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For residents in Huojugou village in China’s Changbai Mountains, a train whistl
e is a euphonious sound that will bring gurgling water to their kitchen and bathhouse.
For 44 years, the mountainous village and several others in northeast China’s Jilin Province
have relied on a train, which only has one locomotive and one tank car, to provide their water supply.
The train commutes between the towns of Songshu and Baihe, nestled deep in Changbai Mountain. Since 1975, it has run for m
ore than 1.6 million km, delivering water to over 2,600 nearby villagers that had limited access to clean water.
Though cisterns have been built to store water unloaded from the trains, villagers along the line
still keep the tradition of welcoming the train in person, clanking their buckets and bottles.
Fetching water used to be a big headache. We had to travel to a far-away river to get water and e
ven make a hole in the ice during winter,” said Li Zuopei, an 80-year-old resident in Yingbishan village.
“Then the small train sent water right to our doorsteps, and it’s amaz
ing that the service has been going on uninterrupted for so many years,” said Li.
insk and covering an area of 91.5 square kilometers, is the first special economic area in Bela
rus and the largest intergovernmental cooperation project between China and Belarus.
The industrial park is stepping up efforts to attract more global investors, with 43 companies registered by the end of February.
Among the 43 companies, 26 are from China, 10 from Belarus, and seven from other countries, like the United States and Ru
ssia. The companies have signed agreements to make total investments of more than $1 billion in the park.
The China-funded Djibouti International Free Trade Zone, which started construction in January 2017, opened on July 5, 2018.
Covering an area of 48.2 sq km, the zone is operated by a join
t venture with investment by Chinese enterprises, including China Merchan
ts Holdings and Dalian Port Corp Ltd, as well as the Djibouti Ports and Free Zone Authority.
More than 20 enterprises from the commerce, logistic, processing sectors have signed letters of intent to re
gister with the FTZ, as infrastructure in the first phase of the FTZ, which covers an area of 6 sq km, has been basically completed.
The FTZ is expected to become a crucial junction linking other African countries involved in the Belt and Road Initiative, and
make Djibouti, the small northeast African country, a marine logistics hub linking Africa, Asia and Europe.