BEIJING, March 15 (Xinhua) -- The first batch of regions and companies have been selected to carry out seawater desalination pilots, China's National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), the country's top economic planner, has announced.
It is the latest move to boost development in the sector.
The list includes the cities of Shenzhen and Zhoushan, Luxixiang Island in Zhejiang Province, Binhai New Area in Tianjin, Bohai New Area in Hebei, and several industrial parks and companies.
The NDRC has asked the listed regions and companies to actively promote the application of desalted water and encourage its use in daily supplies.
China announced a five-year development plan for the industry last year to ease the country's water shortages.
The country aims to produce 2.2 million cubic meters of seawater-converted freshwater per day by 2015, compared with 660,000 cubic meters in 2011, according to the 2011-2015 plan.
More than half of freshwater channeled to isles and more than 15 percent of water delivered to coastal factories will come from the sea by 2015, according to the plan.
Industrial analysts estimated the development plan will require investment of around 21 billion yuan (3.35 billion U.S. dollars).
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