Motilal Oswal
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Motilal Oswal
Economy

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.

Fisherman Sun Lianxi sits in his boat as he travels down the Yellow River to cast his net on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Fisherman Sun Lianxi sits in his boat as he travels down the Yellow River to cast his net on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Jiejie Li, the wife of fisherman Sun Lianxi prepares food on a wood stove in their makeshift dwelling at the Yellow River embankment on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Jiejie Li, the wife of fisherman Sun Lianxi prepares food on a wood stove in their makeshift dwelling at the Yellow River embankment on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
A man walks at night in the old town of Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
A man walks at night in the old town of Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Women cross a street at night in central Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, January 19, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Women cross a street at night in central Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, January 19, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
A woman and a child ride an electric tricycle in the old town of Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
A woman and a child ride an electric tricycle in the old town of Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
The son of fisherman Sun Lianxi walks among the debris of their former housing, which they say the government tore down because to lacking building permission, at the Yellow River embankment on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
The son of fisherman Sun Lianxi walks among the debris of their former housing, which they say the government tore down because to lacking building permission, at the Yellow River embankment on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter
Tourists stand in front of Buddha statues at the Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Tourists stand in front of Buddha statues at the Longmen Grottoes in Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
People travel on a public transport bus in Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
People travel on a public transport bus in Luoyang, Henan province, China, January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Fishermen Sun Lianxi and Sun Genxi depart from the embankment of the Yellow River to cast their net on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
Fishermen Sun Lianxi and Sun Genxi depart from the embankment of the Yellow River to cast their net on the northern outskirts of Zhengzhou, Henan province, China, February 21, 2019. REUTERS/Thomas Peter/Files
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