Beijing is planning to make the northwest autonomous region of Ningxia a financial center for business between China and the Arab world, Guangzhou's 21st Century Business Herald reported July 17.
"The authorities will announce more details about the plan during this year's business forum with our Arab friends," said Wang Zhengwei, head of the Ningxia local government. The forum will be organized sometime in mid-September, the newspaper reported.
Zhang Yensheng, secretary-general of China's National Development and Reform Commission, said that it will be the government's policy to further development of the nation's western regions.
"We need full-scale development for Ningxia and we are planning to carry out the dream to make Ningxia a financial center between us and the Arab world within five to 10 years," Zhang said.
The Ningxia Hui autonomous region is home to the country's largest concentration of the Hui minority group, who are Muslims of Chinese ethnicity.