Hangzhou at the creative cutting edge

Blueprint unveiled by the provincial government heralds a new chapter in the development of Zhejiang's cultural and creative industries

Night view of Qiantang River

The Zhejiang government unveiled a blueprint for a Zhijiang Cultural Industry Belt in Hangzhou recently, heralding a new chapter in the development of the province’s cultural and creative industries and highlighting an ambition to keep Zhejiang at the cutting edge.

“In Zhejiang, the cultural and creative industry has already developed into a pillar industry that realized more than 937.2 billion yuan (US$141 billion) of income in 2017,” said Lai Yingjie, deputy minister of Zhejiang’s publicity department. 

“The blueprint is going to build the Zhijiang belt into the growth engine of the industry, and offer strategies to the province’s overall development.”

The Zhijiang belt nestles along Qiantang River and includes Hangzhou’s Shangcheng, Jianggan, Xihu, Binjiang, Xiaoshan and Fuyang districts. They boast a solid industrial foundation and enriched talent resources.

With a dozen of economic parks and a large number of cultural companies, the Zhijiang belt has reached 140 billion yuan of output in the cultural and creative industry. 

Binjiang Zone

According to the latest statistics, there are 1,873 enterprises of this type scattered over the belt, accounting for 73 percent of Hangzhou’s total.

In addition, a batch of higher education institutes provide professionals to the industry. Apart from the long-established China Academy of Art and Zhejiang University, new colleges including Zhejiang Conservatory of Music and West Lake Institute for Advanced Study also inject energy into the industry.

In accordance with the blueprint, the Zhejiang and Hangzhou governments plan to develop four industries — cartoon and video games, art creation, filmmaking and digital culture, including 32 programs and around 100 billion yuan of investment.

The annual production value is expected to be 80 billion yuan by 2020, and jump to 140 billion yuan by 2025. It is hoped that the comprehensive strength of the belt will rank among the best in the country, gathering a series of renowned companies and top-notch talent.

The cartoon and video games industry is mainly in Binjiang District. The annual Chinese International Animation and Cartoon Festival has been held for 14 years. This year, it has attracted visitors totalling more than 360,000 and industrial insiders from home and abroad.

Binjiang District also inaugurated the first Electronic Literature Week that attracted more than 400 noted writers with numerous online followers. This event is expected to be a new calling card for Hangzhou.

Olympic Center

Main projects of the cartoon and video games industry include the China Cartoon and Animation Museum and the Research and Development Center of NetEase, a video game and e-commerce giant based in Hangzhou.

The development of the art creation industry is aimed to give a big push to creative design, art education and transaction, promote cultural and leisure tourism and build international design brands. Around eight programs are underway, including the Zhijiang Cultural Center, a complex comprised of a couple of museums and libraries, and Lingshan Performance Town, an integration of performance and tourism.

The plan for the filmmaking industry is to build Hangzhou into the movie creative center. The Zhijiang Film Industry Agglomeration Zone is under construction. It includes 50 digital workshops and a batch of Zhejiang local filmmaking companies. In addition, a film academy and an experimental zone is planned.

In the blueprint, the digital culture industry is based on Zhijiang Digital Cultural Industry Park, Wasu Digital Television Industry Park, Hangzhou Digital Publishing Industry Base and Century City Music Industry Base.

The core area of the Zhijiang belt lies in Zhuantang Town and Fuyang District’s Yinhu area. It consists of five zones — Baima Lake, Xiang Lake, Fuchun District, Shangcheng District and Jiuqiao.

Jiuqiao might not be as well known as the other four, but it has gradually been attracting the attention of the public by virtue of development of high technology in recent years.

Jiuqiao is at the confluence of Qiantang River and the Grand Canal. It boasts the Qiantang Smart Town that was established as a hub for intelligent manufacturing in the city. Plans are to expand the zone into a major innovation center in east China.

The Zhejiang and Hangzhou governments will issue preferential fiscal, tax and land policies to support the Zhijiang belt. A particular fund will be established to subsidize companies. Companies that produce innovative products and launch groundbreaking design works could qualify for tax exemptions. 

Greenpark in Jianggan District

Zhijiang Core Area: 

Longwu Tea Town, Zhijiang Film Industry Agglomeration Zone, Zhejiang Film Academy, Yunqi Town, Zhijiang Cultural Center 

Fuchun Zone: 

Yinhu Cultural Creative Park, Zhejiang Daily, Fuchun Cloud Park 

Binjiang Zone: 

China Cartoon and Animation Museum, Research and Development Center of NetEase, Electronic Literature Writers’ Village 

Shangcheng Zone: 

Hangzhou Digital Publishing Industry Base, 1905 Movie Town, Southern Song Dynasty Royal Town

Olympic Center: 

Century City Music Industry Base, Zhejiang International Film Center

Jiuqiao Zone: 

Xinhe Lianchuang Digital Industry Park, Donggu Digital Cultural and Creative Park

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