Mayor says Lingang New Area is attracting top companies
The 31st Shanghai International Business Leaders' Advisory Council held on Sunday brought together 30 foreign business titans to discuss "enhancing the capacity and core competitiveness of Shanghai."
Shanghai Mayor Ying Yong highlighted progress made by the city as well as key tasks in the near future.
The Lingang New Area of the Shanghai Pilot Free Trade Zone, inaugurated two months ago, was one of the highlights. In the past two months since its launch, the Lingang New Area has enjoyed a smooth operation and formulated a method for the administration of the area as well as its administrative body.
"The development is on schedule," Ying said. "By now, a total of 1,329 companies have registered in this area. We have also signed 62 new projects in areas like integrated circuits, smart cars and biomedicine with a total investment value of 26 billion yuan (US$3.67 billion).”
In addition, the area has inked strategic cooperation agreements with 16 financial institutions and 44 state-owned enterprises.
"We will try our best to secure visible and impactful outcomes as soon as possible," Ying said.
Meanwhile, the preparations for the second China International Import Expo are near completion. In order to seek greater impact and spillover effect from this year's CIIE, Shanghai has formulated 50 new measures in seven categories.
"For instance, we will accelerate the establishment of a permanent platform for the display and transaction of imported goods. We will also try to make the Hongqiao Central Business District or even the entire city of Shanghai a distributing center of imported and exported goods for the Yangtze River Delta, for the Asia Pacific region and for the whole world at large," Ying said.
The Hongqiao CBD will also be made an international business hub as well as a new platform for Shanghai's international trade. The core area of the Hongqiao CBD will be expanded from 24 square kilometers to 86 square kilometers, which, together with the peripheral area, will cover a total of 151 square kilometers.
"We will try our best to make Hongqiao CBD a center for sophisticated trading activities and other advanced functions, so that it can serve the Yangtze River Delta, the entire country, and better connect to rest of the world," Ying said.
Speaking about the city's economy, Ying said that the city has focused on the supply-side structural reform and relied on the stability in its own economic growth to buffer the external uncertainties.
"Since the beginning of this year, we have seen some positive signs of recovery, and Shanghai's economy is in good shape," Ying said. In the first quarter of 2019, the city's GDP grew by 5.7 percent, the GDP grew faster by 5.9 percent in the first half of the year, while for the January-September period, the growth pace has been 6 percent, which means that the city's GDP in the second and third quarter both grew by over 6.1 percent.
"Despite the changes and volatilities in the external environment, we will continue to seek steady and stable economic growth. We are confident that we can meet this year's annual target of GDP growth."