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Play now 18 mins

China's ghost city

18 minutes
First broadcast:
Thursday 06 December 2012

Justin Rowlatt continues his journey through the back roads of China. 800 kilometres from Beijing he visits the nation's coal capital, the glittering city of Kang Bashi that has risen from the surrounding desert. But what he discovers is a ghost city, a city virtually without people.

So what does Kang Bashi say about the Chinese economy?

Is the city a misjudged attempt by the provincial government to use the region's incredible coal wealth to develop a more sustainable economy?

Or does it represent something much more profound, is it the most eye-catching example of the misguided investment policies of the Chinese state?

Two Chinese experts with very different perspectives on the country discuss the issues.



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