Integration of Yangtze River Delta bringing strong gains to the whole nation
Fruitful results have been achieved in the Yangtze River Delta since the integrated development of the region was elevated to be a national strategy four years ago.
It has become one of the regions with the most vigorous economic development and strongest innovation in China, accounting for a quarter of the nation's GDP last year.
Its import and export volume hit 14.1 trillion yuan (US$2.08 trillion) last year, accounting for 36.1 percent of the nation's total, growing 27.7 percent from that of 2018.
In addition, the region's industrial added value, total retail sales of consumer goods, and general public budget revenue all accounted for over a quarter of the nation's total last year, hitting 25.6, 25.3 and 26.6 percent, respectively.
The region's new development blueprint was mapped out on Wednesday during a conference attended by top officials of Shanghai, provinces of Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Anhui and the National Development and Reform Commission.
The establishment of research and development institutions will be accelerated in the region to promote big technology and innovation breakthroughs, the conference heard.
Joint efforts will be made to create globally competitive strategic emerging industry and advanced manufacturing industry clusters.
The construction of a number of subway and transportation projects will be accelerated, and world-class port and airport clusters will be created in the delta.
A regional smart traffic demonstration network will be created in the region, and enterprises will be encouraged to get involved in the construction of a global logistics system.
Cooperation over big energy and water conservation projects will be stepped up, and the application of digital infrastructure such as 5G and industrial Internet will be accelerated.
The business environment in the region will be continuously improving, together with the ecology and environment information-sharing mechanism.
A regional green industry chain will be created, and cities in the region will jointly conduct research on the Taihu Lake cross-province compensation mechanism for ecological protection.
Carbon emission peak targets and action plans will be worked out, and the cross-city government affairs-handling mechanism will be boosted.
"Via more efficient measures, the region's strength and competitiveness will be continuously lifted," said Shanghai Party Secretary Li Qiang.
"Joint efforts should be made in the formation of world-class industry clusters, science and technology development, common wealth and ecological and green development."
Last year, the number of invention patents in the region reached 182,000, surging 63 percent from that of 2018 and accounting for 26 percent of the nation's total.
The Yangtze River Delta National Technology Innovation Center was established last year in the Zhangjiang area of the Pudong New Area in Shanghai.
Integrated circuit, biomedicine, artificial intelligence and automobile clusters have been formed, featuring integrated development of scientific innovation and industries.
The scale of the integrated circuit industry accounts for 58 percent of the nation's total, while it is one third for the biomedicine and artificial intelligence.
In the past three years, the number of newly approved medicines in the region has accounted for 70 percent of the nation's total.
Two computing power clusters are planned in the Yangtze River Delta Ecology and Greenery Integration Demonstration Zone and Wuhu City, Anhui Province.
The development of the region's high-speed rail network is on a fast track.
Last year, the region's high-speed rail routes had extended to 6,542 kilometers, surging 55 percent from 2018, bringing cities closer together.
Container cargo throughput surpassed 100 million TEU last year, while airports recorded 170 million trips last year.
The environment of the region is getting better as well.
Last year, the average concentration of PM2.5 was 31 micrograms per cubic meter, down 26 percent from 2018. The pollutants in Taihu Lake have been cut significantly.
The lifted integration level has brought convenience and a sense of gain and happiness for residents.
Over 138 government affairs items, cross-city handling have been achieved, and a cross-city outpatient expenditure payment mechanism has covered over 10,000 medical institutions in the region.