This paper describes the recent progress of the HL-2A project. HL-2A is the first tokamak with divertor in China. The main parameters of HL-2A are major radius, R = 1.64 m; minor radius, r = 0.38 m; toroidal field, Bt = 2.8 T; plasma current, Ip = 480 kA; and current flattop time, t = 2 to 5 s. Subjects related to the divertor, confinement, magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) instabilities, heating and current drive, fueling, etc., will be investigated with HL-2A. Significant progress in the construction of the HL-2A tokamak has been achieved recently. This paper describes the development of major components and the installation of the machine. The commissioning of the HL-2A machine will begin in the middle of 2002. The HL-2A physics research program has been proposed and will emphasize the divertor, MHD instabilities, and confinement.