Volume 2 Chapter 124 Special economic zone
When the banquet was half over, Xu Yi was led by a servant of the palace to a secret room to have a private meeting with the king.
Compared to the first time, after the king saw Xu Yi, the smile on his face became much brighter and sincere.
Just like he had said about Xu Yi in the banquet, for the Lampuri Kingdom’s increase in crops this year, the biggest contributor was the Frestech Chamber of Commerce’s agricultural magic machines. But the biggest hero was of course Xu Yi who had invented the agricultural magic machines.
For the Lampuri Kingdom or for any country on the Sines Continent, being able to solve the food and shelter problems of their people was the number one priority.
The Lampuri Kingdom had problems dealing with this before, but now there was the help of the agricultural magic machines, they had solved this problem almost perfectly in just a single year.
Even according to the stats of the agricultural department, if they continued promoting the agricultural magic machines and allowed every piece of land in the kingdom to use them, the Lampuri Kingdom might not just be able to satisfy their own needs, they might even be able to sell excess grain to other countries!
After the king learned of this good news, how could he not reveal a sincere and bright smile to Xu Yi?
“The agricultural department wants to export grains?” Xu Yi was a bit surprised, “Your majesty, forgive me for saying this, but I feel that we need to reconsider this?”
“Oh? What needs to be reconsidered?” The king looked at Xu Yi with an interested gaze.
“First, the reason why our kingdom could have this rich harvest, other than having the help of the agricultural magic machines and opening much more farmland, the other important reason was that there weren’t any natural disasters that decreased crop yields. But this is something that has to be considered. If I’m not wrong, the turmoil ten years ago was caused by famine…..”
Xu Yi didn’t keep speaking.
The famine of the Lampuri Kingdom ten years ago was a taboo for everyone in the kingdom, they were unwilling to easily bring it up.
And in front of a king who had taken his throne in this famine, it had a deeper impression on him than other people.
The king didn’t seem to mind as he said with a nod, “Un, this is indeed something to consider. But the agricultural department has already considered this, so what else do you need to consider?”
“What else…...The agricultural department is saying that not only is this year’s grain yield enough to satisfy the people’s needs and is even enough to export, but I feel that is based on the previous grain needs of the kingdom. Actually from what I’ve observed in Banta City and the surrounding cities, there are many families, especially those normal peasant families who can’t fill their stomachs. I think that…..the agricultural department might have underestimated people’s need for food.”
“You mean that because people couldn’t eat their fill, now that they have much more food compared to before to eat, they will eat more? It might raise the need for food compared to before by several times?” The king asked.
“It’s just that meaning.”
Seeing Xu Yi nod, the king suddenly broke out in laughter.
“Ha, ha, I can understand this idea. Back during the famine, I even went hungry for several days. When there was enough food to eat, I let myself go and gained several pounds. Look…..” The king patted his round stomach and said in a voice of self ridicule, “This was the weight gained several years ago and I still haven’t lost it.”
Xu Yi couldn’t help smiling, thinking that the king was rather charming.
The king patted the armrest of his chair and gave a nod as he said with a voice of praise, “Not bad, I wanted to call you in to praise you alone and planned on asking if you needed any rewards, but I never thought that by talking to you, I’ve found that you have quite the insight on how to govern the kingdom. Not bad, not bad…..I’ve heard Count Sean report that you are currently working on the Banta City renovation plan, right?”
Xu Yi was stunned, but he quickly nodded and replied, “Yes. Count Sean gave responsibility of this project to me, but the work has just started, so there isn’t anything to show for it right now.
“To let Count Sean have the idea of renovating Banta City, that is already considered a large achievement.” The king said with a faint smile, “Xu Yi, I have to say, since Banta City had your Frestech Chamber of Commerce, it has had too many changes compared to before. At least, it’s become much richer compared to before, right? Otherwise, how could it undergo this renovation?”
Xu Yi couldn’t help revealing a smile, “The Lord Count always complains to me about this. I won’t hide it from you, right now the City Lord’s Manor owes our company several hundred thousand gold coins.”
“Let him keep owing you.” The king waved his hand with an uncaring expression, “Actually even I want to owe your company several hundred thousand or even several million.”
Xu Yi was surprised, “Your highness, our company hasn’t developed to that point yet……”
The king revealed a faint smile, “No need to be nervous, of course I’m just joking. I just found that Banta City has some pretty good changes and I can’t help thinking how good it would be if those changes could occur all over our Lampuri Kingdom.”
Seeing the emotional look on the king’s face, Xu Yi’s heart was suddenly moved.
“Your majesty, it’s not realistic to make the kingdom like Banta City in a short period of time. But how about you first consider to turn an area of the kingdom into a prosperous and lively area?”
“First choose an area to make lively?” The king knit his brows, “What does this mean? How can it be done?”
“Actually, it’s very simple, just make a special economic zone…..”
After leaving the royal palace, Xu YI rode his horse carriage back to his residence. As soon as the horse carriage began moving, he suddenly couldn’t help breaking out in laughter.
There was no other way, as long as he thought of what he just discussed with the king, he really wanted to laugh.
In a half slavery half feudal society, to discuss the matter of a special economic area with the king of an kingdom really was somewhat funny.
But the king had very seriously listened to what Xu Yi said.
After hearing Xu Yi’s idea of building a special economic zone near Banta City, the king had actually agreed with it for now after thinking about it.
He even analyzed the advantages and disadvantages of building this special economic zone with Xu Yi.
The advantage was that they could gather manpower and policies to allow Banta City and the surrounding cities to develop faster.
Even without the help of kingdom policies right now, because there was the Frestech Chamber of Commerce, this area was more prosperous compared to before and could be considered a spontaneous special economic zone.
If they had the help of kingdom policies, this development would go even faster.
The downside was that this could create dissatisfaction in other parts of the kingdom, especially in the territories of the other great nobles.
Based on what was the special economic zone to be placed near Banta City and why wasn’t it placed anywhere else?
What specialty did Banta City have over other places?
Xu Yi really wanted to say that Banta City’s greatest advantage was that it had the Frestech Chamber of Commerce, but of course he couldn’t say this because this definitely wouldn’t convince anyone.
So he carefully proposed this to the king, only giving him the idea of a special economic zone. He didn’t have the king tell everyone that this special economic zone would be placed near Banta City.
To put it bluntly, Xu Yi wanted the king to look after the development of the area around Banta City. He wanted him to make certain policies that would facilitate the development of Banta City and the surrounding area.
The king said that this suggestion would benefit everyone and he would seriously consider it.
So when Xu Yi met the king a second time, the results made him very satisfied.
But when he left, the king suddenly patted his shoulder and said a few words that made him vigilant.
The king had said, “Very good, I’m much more assured that Seveni has a helper like you.”
These words really had deep meaning.
When the carriage stopped at the entrance of the residence, Xu Yi couldn’t help continuing to ponder what the real meaning behind the king’s words were.
Seeing Still that came out, he could only forget about it and put those words in his heart, as he revealed a smile.
“Aleri is awake.” Still said.
“Oh? Then I’ll go take a look.”
Xu Yi and Still quickly went to Aleri’s room.
When they came in, they heard a weak voice protesting from inside the room.
“Bel….Bella, don’t…..If people see this…..it won’t seem good.”
Bella’s very easily recognizable loud voice sounded.
“Humph, what’s not good? I am just taking care of a sick person. Come, open your mouth, don’t be hesitant like a little girl. Ah…..”
They heard the sound of a spoon touching a bowl and Xu Yi stopped. He pointed at the room and looked at Still with a questioning gaze.
Still revealed an ambiguous smile and raised a finger to tell him to be silent. Then the two of them approached the door and tentatively poked their heads in.
The situation inside was like what Xu Yi thought. Aleri was leaning back on his pillow with Bella sitting beside him. There was a bowl of black liquid that was unknown if it was medicine or soup, but Bella was currently feeding it spoonful by spoonful into Aleri’s mouth.
Aleri’s face was red as he opened his mouth to take the spoon. Xu Yi suddenly gave a soft cough and walked in, pretending to be surprised as he loudly said, “Bella, didn’t you say you loved me yesterday? Could it be that your heart has changed in just a single day?”
Bella’s hand trembled and almost dropped the spoon.
Seeing Still and Xu Yi walking in, the two of them looked very embarrassed.