China’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has announced it aims to finish compiling a plan on the development of five interregional city clusters, including the Greater Bay Area, by year-end, The Star Online reported.
After a two-week period of public consultation on the planning development of the Greater Bay Area held in the Macau SAR, the local government forwarded its draft proposal to the Commission before the end of June.
The ‘Framework Agreement on Deepening Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Co-operation in the Development of the Bay Area’ was signed in early July.
The executive deputy head of the China Centre for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE), Zhang Xiaoqiang, was referred by The Standard as saying that the area – which, more specifically, comprises Macau, Hong Kong and nine cities in Guangdong Province – is expected to have the highest GDP of all bay areas worldwide by 2030.
The executive deputy added that it is also anticipated that the Greater Bay Area would become an advanced manufacturing centre, and an important global hub of innovation, finance, shipping and trade.
The combined GDP of the localities of the Greater Bay Area amounted to RMB9.35 trillion (US$1.37 trillion/ MOP11.08 trillion) in 2016, while the entire GDP of Mainland China stood at RMB74.41 trillion.
Current estimates suggest that the GDP of the Greater Bay Area could increase by as much as US$4.62 trillion by 2030, thereby becoming the world’s most important bay area development, ahead of Tokyo, New York, and San Francisco bay areas, according to The Standard.
In addition to the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area, the other four interregional city clusters NDRC plans to finish compiling this year include:
– Western Taiwan Straits Economic Zone, embracing Fujian and neighbouring areas;
– Guanzhong Plain urban cluster, including major cities in Shaanxi Province;
– Lanzhou-Xining cluster located in Gansu and Qinghai provinces; and
– Hohhot-Baotou-Erdos-Yulin cluster in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region and Shaanxi Province.
According to the deputy director of the NDRC’s China Centre for Urban Development, Shen Chi, China will continue to compile such plans, aiming to complete a total of 19 city cluster plans by 2020, according to information on The Star Online.
The same news outlet reported that China claimed it had already compiled six such city clusters last year and has eight more in line for the coming two years.