|Diversified gov't performance evaluations promote development|
Although the performance of local Chinese authorities is typically evaluated based on the GDP growth of their jurisdictions, the recent diversification of the evaluation system has made it more flexible and encouraged new forms of development.
The municipal government of Huangshan in east China's Anhui province spent six billion yuan ($940 million) from 2006 to 2010 to protect and renovate ancient dwellings there, drawing larger numbers of tourists and increasing tourism revenues in the years since.
"We invested such a large amount of capital on the program because the new evaluation system has encouraged us to make more efforts to protect resources and the environment," said Wang Fuhong, secretary of the municipal Communist Party of China committee.
Wang said the city is in no hurry to develop its industries, but is more concerned with protecting the environment.
Local government performance in Anhui will be assessed using a variety of factors, including GDP growth rate, resource and environmental protection, the improvement of people's livelihoods and social construction.
The province's evaluation system places a 3-percent weighting on GDP growth for local evaluations, down from the previous 14 percent.
The change will make evaluations of local development and performance more equal, said Shen Weiguo, director of the provincial development and reform commission.
An excessive focus on the pursuit of GDP growth has hobbled the country's development, especially in terms of protecting the environment, said Li Deshui, former director of the National Bureau of Statistics.
Li said the lower evaluatory weighting for local GDPs will help China's development become more sustainable.
New evaluation systems have also been implemented in other provinces and regions.