CHINA TO DEVELOP A TRAVEL OASIS ON A CONTROVERSIAL ISLAND

Wayne M. Gore - Dec 6, 2010
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A travel oasis should be developed on a disputed area on Russian-Chinese border. For a long time, it was a place which Russia and China argued about a lot. However, a recent agreement between the two countries brings hope they will be able to cooperate and build a resort in the area.

 

At the confluence of Amur and Ussuri Rivers (Heilongjiang River and Usul) which is on the Russian-Chinese border there is an island called the Big Ussuriysky Island in Russian and Heixiazi Island in Chinese. Both countries have quarreled about the border area since the day the Red Army won the Island in favor of the Soviet Union.

Under a new agreement, the issue between the two states may be resolved. Both Russia and China agreed on mutual development of the island. Since then, foreign investors have been waiting for Chinese developers to start rebuilding their part of the island into a tourist area with hotels and free trade zone.

Heixiazi government expects that the rebuilt area will attract tourists from neighboring Russia, Japan and South Korea. Chinese government plans to invest about 1.5 billion dollars into the Heixiazi Island. In accordance with the agreement, Russia has to be integrated in the redevelopment plan with its own half of the disputed area.


Currently, representatives of Russian and Chinese sides are in bilateral negotiations on a joint program of building the infrastructure in the area such as roads, bridges, ports and airports which will connect the island with Khabarovsk, the nearest Russian city, and the rest of the world. There is also a proposal for joint development of the land closest to the Russian-Chinese border and turning it into the center of holiday and business travel.


China has a prototype of such a place – the Harbin Sun Island - which is popular among fans of summer vacations. It is praised for its sandy beaches, theme parks and reserves built to protect the endangered tiger population. With the beginning of cold winter, sunny island invites tourists to a famous Harbin Ice Festival, which is usually a great attraction for tourists.

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