A ceremony marking the establishment of the prefecture-level city Xigaze is held in Xigaze,
southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region, on December 18, 2014. The new Xigaze City has
replaced Xigaze Prefecture in the region under the approval of China’s State Council.
Photo by Liu Kun
New city inaugurated in China’s Tibet
By Lü Qiuping and An Na
The Tibet Autonomous Region now has a new city after Xigaze was upgraded and inaugurated to become the third prefecture-level city in the region on Thursday of December 18.
“The inauguration of Xigaze City is a milestone throughout the area’s history, which marks its development entering into a new era,” said Zhang Hongbo, mayor of the new city.
As part of the status upgrade, the city’s Communist Party committee, people’s congress standing committee, government and political advisory body were established.
Located at an altitude of more than 3,800 meters, Xigaze is now the third prefecture-level city in Tibet after the regional capital Lhasa and Qamdo.
With a population of 780,000, or one fourth of the total in Tibet, Xigaze was previously known as a prefecture. Its gross domestic product surged by 62.5 times to 14.5 billion yuan in 2014 from 56 million yuan in 1964.
Deputy mayor Zhang Xiuwu said the conversion from a prefecture to a city means a simplified administrative approval procedure, which is much helpful for the economic development of the area with higher efficiency.
“The prefecture, as an administrative branch office of the regional government rather than a government itself, had no right to approve many administrative affairs. With the city government established today, many administrative affairs can be approved within the city directly, without having to be submitted to the regional capital Lhasa for approval,” he said.