The Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, the first provincial-level ethnic autonomous region in China, has made great progress in a number of aspects over the past 70 years.
Achievements in the north China region range from solid infrastructure construction and expanding education to improved living conditions and ethnic solidarity, which have earned applause and respect from the international community.
“The place has physically transformed in the last half a century,” said Kerry Brown, one of Britain’s leading experts on China, who did his Ph.D. on Inner Mongolia.
Before the establishment of autonomous region, Inner Mongolia was among the country’s backward spots. But over the past 70 years, its economy has growth to 1.86 trillion yuan (about 279 billion U.S. dollars) in 2016, 642 times of that in 1947, ranking first among the country’s five autonomous regions.
“Inner Mongolia has witnessed great and speedy economic achievements,” Wiqar Ali Shah, a professor of social sciences at the Islamabad-based Quaid-i-Azam University, told Xinhua.
“Besides the traditional businesses of the area, the establishment of other industries is being encouraged,” said Shah, adding the Economic and Technological Development Zones and export processing zone have created hundreds of thousands jobs which helped lift a big portion of the population including minorities out of poverty.
The presence of tall buildings is ubiquitous and the livelihoods of the region’s ethnic minorities has significantly improved, said Gurhan Kirilen, a sinology associate professor at Ankara University in Turkey
China’s ethnic policy has stood the test of time, said Mustafa Ibrahim, a Palestinian writer and analyst. He said the 70th anniversary of Inner Mongolia as autonomous region is a perfect example of the Chinese government’s efforts to promote national solidarity and common development.
Ethnic autonomy in China’s regions, prefectures and counties was introduced to create equality, solidarity and common prosperity for all ethnic groups.—Xinhua