Beijing to limit population growth

World Today

Beijing plans to limit its population growth and shift certain industries outside the city to curb overpopulation, a government statement said last week.

Beijing’s population grew to 21.52 million by the end of 2014, making it one of the most populous cities in the world. Last year, 368,000 people were added, the smallest number since 2011 but still significant. Around 8.19 million migrants lived and worked in the capital last year. The growth of migrants has slowed by about 1.7 percent, resulting in 129,000 fewer than the growth in 2013, an Work Report from earlier this year said.

The statement specified a population control target of 23 million by 2020, and said it would reduce the number of people living in six downtown districts of Dongcheng, Xicheng, Haidian, Chaoyang, Shijingshan, Fengtai by 15 percent, according to

Guo Jinlong, Party Secretary of Beijing, said that the most pressing problem for the city’s development is the oversized population.

A government session was held last week to study the development plan of promoting regional integration between Beijing, Tianjin, and Hebei Province, with the aim of sending Beijing’s labor-intensive industries, including factories and wholesale markets, to nearby cities and provinces. The labor force would move with the industries.

In the future, the city also plans to relocate even more sectors, such as hospitals, manufacturing, and schools, to surrounding areas.

City data show that around 72 percent of employees are concentrated in downtown areas-a major source of traffic congestion and air pollution.

The government also announced that the administrative body of the city of Beijing will be relocated to the Tongzhou district, a suburb in Beijing. The area will become the city’s new subsidiary administrative center, it said.

Story compiled with information from CCTV News and China Daily.