A technician instructs a resident in the southern Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region on how to use electrical heating. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
A 3.6-billion-yuan ($514.29 million) grid project was officially completed and started operation in the southern Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region by the end of December, six months ahead of schedule.
The project's completion indicates that all townships in the northwestern Chinese region are supplied with stable electricity, according to a statement released by the Kashgar Electricity Supply Company.
The grid project, which mainly benefits the four major prefectures of Kashgar, Hotan, Aksu and Kezilesu Kirgiz in the desert area of southern Xinjiang, is expected to play an important role in helping local counties and townships shake off poverty in the coming years.
Hu Zhengyu, deputy director of the Construction Department of Kashgar Electricity Supply Company, said the grid project has greatly improved power transmission and supply capacity in Xinjiang and is expected to play a big part in local economic construction.
Construction began about a year ago, he added.
Kadir Mamut, a farmer from the town of Teram village in Yengiostang of Yopurga county, said he uses the stable electricity supply to irrigate his crop fields.
In previous years, he had to use diesel oil to irrigate and that increased production costs, he said.
Gulqekra Ibrayimjan, who comes from Tashikurgan Tajik autonomous county, said she can now use a refrigerator and other household appliances.
She said she plans to buy a new oven to toast bread in the near future.