An article by Weng Zhenghua, China Daily.

Governments and companies are increasingly taking advantage of the unscathed ecological environment in their regions to lure investment amid concerns pollution is taking its toll on health.

Unpolluted waters, premium air quality, a high percentage of forest coverage and even blue skies were major selling points when governments and enterprises tried to seek business opportunities in metropolises such as Shanghai.

This kind of promotion is attractive and effective, government officials and business leaders said, as smoggy weather has become the norm in a large swathe of China.

Shanghai was shrouded in a heavy haze blown from the north on Nov 7. As of 3 pm, the air quality index given by the Shanghai Environmental Monitoring Center had surged to 253, indicating serious pollution.

Wei Meng, director of the investment promotion bureau for the mechanics and electronics sector in Suqian, Jiangsu province, said, “We’re proud of our clear water and blue sky, and we usually start each business promotion session by introducing our unscathed environment.”

With a 5.6 million population, Suqian, 512 km north of Shanghai, is a prefecture-level city known for its well-preserved environment.

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