Before 1990, Chi Linh District with its advantages of traffic system, mineral and natural resources and tourism almost existed in potential. Implementing the cause of "Doi Moi" led by the Party, Chi Linh District has gained visible achievements. From a mountainous district with backward economy, difficult traffic system, it nowadays becomes an industrial district; tourism and service sectors develop rapidly with the yearly GDP growth rate of 11.9%.
Bring into play potentials for the economic development
Chi Linh District with its special geographical position is a door of Dong Bac Bo mountainous area and Hong River delta, and with three fourth areas is mountains and forests. Lying in the North of Hai Duong Province, Chi Linh District adjoins Bac Giang province in the North, Bac Ninh Province in the West, Quang Ninh Province in the East and Nam Sach and Kinh Mon Districts in the South. Surrounding three directions of Chi Linh District is four rivers including Thuong, Thai Binh, Kinh Thay and Dong Nai. The Northwest of the district is the confluence of six rivers including Duong, Cau, Thuong, Luc Nam, Thai Binh and Luc Dau (or Luc Dau Giang), hence water traffic system is always in crowds. Additionally, the district also has the key road and railway traffic systems such as national road No18 from the East to West linking Ha Noi and Quang Ninh, road 183 linking the district's centre to Hai Duong City - the centre of three cities Ha Noi, Ha Long and Hai Duong.
As a province with valuable natural resources, Chi Linh District enjoys essential conditions for meeting industrial sector's growth rate with the main materials of sandstone (Co Thanh and Cong Hoa communes), kaolin soil, clayey soil with the reserve of million of tonnes (Cong Hoa commune), coal mine in Van Duc, An Lac, Thai Hoc communes. Furthermore, Chi Linh District is also an area of "supernatural land of celebrities" attaching to famous men as Tran Hung Dao, Nguyen Trai, Chu Van An, Phap Loa, Nguyen Thi Due, Le Hoan. Chi Linh District consists of nine national-ranked vestiges, especially places of historical interest and cultural relics - landscape Con Son- Kiep Bac. Chi Linh with the superb beauty of Phuong Hoang mountain range, Mat Son lake area, Ma Vi pine forest is considered Da Lat of the North. This is a valuable asset, creating huge prospects for the tourism sector's development. Exploiting effectively these potentials, Chi Linh District will form a strong industrial sector, especially in the field of exploitation and construction material production, develop ecological, cultural-historical tourism and forest economy with special fruits such as Thieu litchi, big Logan, custard apple, etc.
Making potentials into strengths
Exploiting effectively available potentials, over the past years, Chi Linh District has been known as one of six industrial areas of Hai Duong Province, creating the premise for transforming economic structure towards industry-service-agriculture.
In which, industry-handicraft and service has developed with annual growth rate of 13.61%. In 2002 alone, industrial production value in the state economic sector gained VND 1,818.1 billion (mainly in the fields of electric production, exploitation and production of construction material such as kaolin, clayey, sand, gravel, granite, glass, construction, etc) and non-state economic sector (at the current price) was VND69 billion. Achieving such developments is due to the re-arrangement, renovation, investment and expansion of production of the state-owned enterprises such as Pha Lai Thermos-Electricity Plant, Truc Thon material fire-resistant and clayey Soil Company, Installation and Machine Join-Stock Company No.17 and Building and Installation Company III, etc. In addition, thanks to favourable conditions in the field of land, production site, labour and capital, the state-owned enterprises have seen considerable positive development. In 2002, the entire district consists of 27 collectives and eight private enterprises, 19 limited companies, five join-stock companies, eight public credit funds and 4.000 production-business households, 1.062 of which are industrial production bases.
Service sector has reached high growth rate, after only industrial sector (11.9% per year). Chi Linh District has established three trade-service development areas in three townships of Sao Do, Pha Lai, Ben Tam and townlets of Le Loi, Hoang Tien, Tan Dan, Van An, etc. In the commune's centres, trade centres are also established. Market system is developed strongly including Sao Do, Thien, Pha Lai, Mat Son, etc. Activities in these areas are managed by organisations and about 3,000 business households, contributing to increasing the selling rate of retail goods to 10-12% per year. Services develop plentifully and variously, meeting the demands of the people's production and consumption.
Tourism place Con Son-Kiep Bac and places of historical interest including Nguyen Trai Temple, Thanh Mai Pagoda, Chu Van An Temple restored and upgraded has increased their attraction for domestic and international tourists. Ecological tourism places have been gradually formed, Chi Linh Star Golf Course with 36 holes and international standard has been gradually put into operation, 200 villas, two five-star hotels and many entertainment centres have been built. This is the orientation of development of Chi Linh District's "non-smoke industrial sector".
Additionally, Chi Linh District attaches special importance to the agricultural economy, which creates income and jobs for over 70% of district's population. From 2001 to June 2003, agriculture-forestry-industry sectors of Chi Linh District gained high annual growth rate of 6.5% (in stage of 1996 - 2000 was only 4.3% per year). Due to terrain divided into two areas including plain and mountainous ones, the southern areas of road No18 specialise in producing rice, crops, and the northern areas grow rice, industrial trees (peanut, soya-bean), fruits (Thieu litchi, big longan, custard apple, orange, mandarine, persimmon), develop farming economy, breed poultry and bee. Regarding food production alone, in 2002 the output gained 42,380 tonnes; average per capital foods output was 300 kilograms. Annual production value over one hectare of cultivation area gained VND 22.74 million.
In which forestry sector is considered the key one for the agricultural economic development. At present, the farming economy of Chi Linh District is the most strongly developing in Hai Duong Province with 130 farms (accounting for 76% of the total provincial farms) concentrated in the communes of Bac An, Hoang Hoa Tham, Le Loi, Hoang Tien, etc. Of which 111 are fruit growing farms, 19 are forestry farms with investment capital of VND 12.156 billion and total area of 1,411 hectares, attracting and creating jobs for 639 labourers. Currently the area of fruit in the province gains 7,148 hectares, an increase of nearly 50% against 2000, of which 3,912 hectares were harvested (accounting for 54.7% of area). The biggest output of longan and litchi (main fruits) was 12,800 tonnes; longan and litchi drying occupation in the district has developed and become a big market for those fruits. Livestock husbandry sector focusing on the program of breeding porker pigs and Sind cows has improved the productivity and quality of cattle. Such new vocations with their high economic values as breeding goat, snake or bees, etc have developed strongly. Presently, the district agricultural economic structure develops towards planting (64.3%) - breeding (30.7%) - service (5%).
Developing infrastructure and culture
The rapid economic development has contributed to changing positively Chi Linh District. With focusing on investing in infrastructure, from 2002, Chi Linh District has invested VND210.735 billion in implementing a series of important projects. Particularly, Chi Linh District has made use of the provincial and central capital to upgrade the national traffic system 18A, Pha Lai Bridge, road to Con Son-Kiep Bac tourism place, town inner-road of Sao Do Township, rural road system, newly build Nguyen Trai Temple, rebuild Con Son dam, build Pha Lai Thermo-Electric Plant II, industry-trade-service projects beside national road No18 (Cong Hoa, Hoang Tan, Hoang Tien, Van An, Tan Dan communes). Those projects have made Chi Linh District as a "big construction site". In the coming time, Chi Linh District will continue to complete many big projects such as Mat Son Lake recovering projects, Chi Linh Star Golf Course, Noi Bai-Cai Lan expressway, etc. Furthermore, the district has implemented works serving the economic development, people's life and welfare such as An Bai and Ky Da water-pump stations, the district stadium, schools, Head Offices of the district Party Committee, People's Committee, completed the planing of Ben Tam township and gradually built the infrastructure for it.
Training and education have seen visible progresses in both scale and quality. In 2002, the entire district universalised the secondary schools at 19 out of 20 communes and townships; 11 schools reached the national standard. The efficiency of education has been gradually improved. Universalisation of the primary schools at the required age has implemented the target in both number and efficiency. Material facilities for teaching and learning have been improved. At present, Chi Linh District has three vocational training schools at the central level, 22 primary schools, 20 secondary schools and three high schools.
Health service and public healthcare are operating effectively. So far, 100% of communes have health stations, five staff per station on average; 1.3 staff per village and 80% of stations having doctors, 100% of stations having midwifes or nurses. The movement of the whole people participating in building the cultural life and developing the sports cause is implemented successfully. Out of 20 communes and townships, 17 have meeting-places, cultural houses; 19 have cultural post offices, 10 have their stadium. Besides, 96 hamlets and villages built the cultural houses and entertainment places. The movement of building the cultural villages and families develops strongly with 27 villages and 22,200 families achieving the cultural standard. 19 out of 20 communes and townships have their broadcasting stations. The number of people using telephone is six telephones per 100 people.
The program of hunger alleviation and poverty reduction and job creation has initially gained their efficiency. Over the past two years, the district has created jobs for about 4,000 labourers. The assistance programs such as providing health insurance certificates, creating the funds "for the poor", building houses of gratitude for the poor, assisting seeds and capital in the entire district. Through those programs, the rate of needy households has reduced from 12.29% (in 2000) to 8.2% (in June 2003). The number of poverty escaped households was 1,519. The people's material life has been unceasingly improved and the rural socio-economic development has been positively changed daily, the number of households using clean water and electricity has reached 95% and 99% respectively.
The orientation of development until 2010
To continue the achieved results, Chi Linh District Party Committee and People's Committee set forth socio-economic targets until 2010, particularly Striving to gain the annual GDP growth rate of 11.9%. The economic structure (under the district's management) transforms towards industry-construction (36%), trade-service (30%) and agriculture-forestry-fishery (34%). Continuing to change agricultural economic structure towards increasing the area of vegetable and crops, industrial crops and fruits. Export turnover increases 10% per year on average, up to 2005 gains USD 3-3.5 million. Maintaining the educational universalisation at the required age, 100% of children attend school, there are not poor households and increasing the rate of rich household to 40%. In details:
1) Industry and handicraft are still considered the key economic sectors with the annual growth rate of 13.6%.
2) Speeding up the application of advance of science and technology in production, especially in breeds, creating changes towards goods production to ensure up to 2005, the total cultivate area reaches 14,850 hectares. The output of foods, fruits, seasonable crops and fishes are estimated to gain 45,870 tonnes, 20,000 tonnes, 650 tonnes and 1,200 tonnes respectively.
3) Developing variously services and tourism in the relations of area and the country. Up to 2005, the revenue from tourism and service in the whole district gains VND200 billion and to 2010 is VND350 billion. Attaching importance to exploiting resources based on the economic development planing of the Government. Apart from two industrial zones Cong Hoa and Hoang Tan, the district will build from three to five industrial complexes. At the same time, the local authority will create favourable conditions to attract other economic sectors, domestic and international investors in industrial zones and complexes. Encouraging the development of industry and handicraft, tourism, service and agricultural product processing.
4). Completing the project of upgrading Sao Do township to township grade 4, Chi Linh District to Chi Linh Town and City in the future. Additionally, planing some new urban areas and ecological tourism places to exploit advantages of "non-smoke industry", creating housing funds for labourers in factories and enterprises.
Basing on its potentials and strengths for development, Chi Linh District is promising more significant changes in its socio-economic development in the future. Taking "industry and tourism" for its development, Chi Linh District will become a typical district of Hai Duong Province - a province on the way to development.
( According to " Hai Duong - new image in century XXI" -National Politics Publishing House )