Thanks to the acceleration in the construction of the rural drinking water project, more than 700,000 officers and soldiers of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps now are able to drink potable water. Since 2000, the Corps has invested a total of over 200 million yuan in this project.
The Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps shoulders an important historical mission of opening up uncultivated land and defending the border. Most of its farmland is situated in the lower reaches of the river; or on the edge of the desert and saline-alkali wasteland. Until 1999, of 2.4 million people, more than one million experienced difficulty getting drinking water. Many still drank untreated water from the river.
Since China launched the program to develop the western region, the state has invested more in improving the infrastructure of the border areas. In 2000 alone, China invested over six million yuan in water resources improvement for the Agricultural No.9 Division – a program which provides drinking water to more than 16,000 people. In 2000, the Corps began to use “World Bank loans for the rural water supply and sanitation project.” As of today, it has completed more than 250 water supply projects; and has resolved the difficulties in yielding drinking water.