China dreams on hold: Heartland city Zhengzhou feels chill of economic slowdown
Updated : 2019-05-28 09:06:13
For the last decade, the city of Zhengzhou has been getting a taste of the Chinese dream. Fuelled by investment, including large subsidies from the central government in Beijing, the provincial capital of the inland province of Henan has boomed. Once an impoverished city of 10 million set between the Yellow and Yangtze rivers, Zhengzhou now boasts a gleaming downtown skyline and a cascade of freeway overpasses. An upgraded rail network has helped turn the city into a logistics hub, linking China's output with overland shipments to Europe as part of the Belt and Road initiative. The Apple supplier Foxconn built the world's largest iPhone factory in Zhengzhou. For many across Henan, a province of 100 million people, Zhenghzou has become a symbol of achievement and opportunity in China's hinterland - a magnet for those leaving pig farms and wheat fields in search of better lives. Personal incomes in Zhengzhou over the past decade have doubled on average, hitting 33,105 yuan ($4,791) last year. That has allowed many residents a taste of middle class life; consumer appliances, luxury goods and apartments of their own.