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Guangzhou Development District harnesses networking power of CIIE to plan future growth

By YUAN SHENGGAO| Source: China Daily | Updated : 2023-11-15

Relying on the investment promotion platform of the just concluded sixth China International Import Expo, Guangzhou Development District in Guangdong province has expanded its circle of friends and sought cooperation with more than 30 well-known foreign enterprises such as MSD, Novartis, ABB, Schneider Electric and Qualcomm.

As the battlefield of Guangzhou's real economy and the main engine of technological innovation, the district is advancing entrepreneurship to expand the investment landscape, launching projects to attract investment, strengthening industrial clusters, cultivating future industries and enhancing new development momentum.

Data show that in the first three quarters of this year, the district has signed contracts for 349 new projects, with the annual output value/revenue of registered projects exceeding 380 billion yuan ($52.17 billion). Paid-in investment is about $2.72 billion, a year-on-year growth of 20.55 percent.

From January to October, a total of nine projects with investment exceeding 10 billion yuan were signed. Paid-in investment in the area continues to lead the city in terms of quality and quantity.

Surging foreign investment

Since the beginning of this year, foreign-funded enterprises have continued to increase investment and expand production in the district.

The district held the signing ceremony for the introduction of three new products of AstraZeneca, a United Kingdom-headquartered pharmaceutical company, during the sixth CIIE on Nov 5.

In early September, the fourth factory of Panasonic Industrial Devices Materials (Guangzhou) started producing mainly 5G electronic materials in the district. Once it reaches full speed, it can increase the company's total production capacity 1.3 times and drive an annual sales growth of 10 percent for the next five years, injecting new momentum into the development of China's 5G industry.

Other key initiatives include the signing of Sino Biopharmaceutical; the increased investment and expanded production of foreign enterprises such as Jabil and Amway; and the completion of the headquarters for Thermo Fisher Scientific in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

The confidence that foreign investors have shown in the district is linked to the strong policy support. This year, the district has offered incentives with a maximum of 100 million yuan for individual enterprises.

According to statistics, in the first three quarters of this year, the number of newly established foreign-funded enterprises in the district reached 200, a year-on-year increase of 29.87 percent; the actual utilization of foreign investment was about $2.72 billion, a year-on-year increase of 20.55 percent, accounting for 46 percent of the city's total foreign investment.

Among them, foreign investment in high-tech industries accounts for 91.3 percent, including the upgrading and adjustment of foreign-funded enterprises' strategies in China, deepening localization and gradually realizing the transformation from manufacturing production to local research and development.

Investment promotion

The district is carrying out capital investment promotion through a number of key projects.

It held the 2023 Guangzhou Industrial Mega Fund Conference on Sept 19, during which the first batch of cooperative projects were signed with a total scale of more than 40 billion yuan.

A sound industrial investment ecosystem is the lifeline of enterprise development.

This area highlights the role of capital in investment promotion and has formed a "State-owned enterprise investment, industry fund guidance and social capital participation" system.

In recent years, the district has promoted the transformation of its State-owned enterprises from urban investment companies to industrial investment companies, investing more than 90 billion yuan to promote projects led by companies such as XPeng Motors, BeiGene, InnoCare and China Star Optoelectronics Technology, and introducing more than 1,000 high-quality industrial projects.

As for venture capital institutions and industry fund guidance, as of now, there are a total of 778 venture capital institutions in the district with a total managed fund of more than 220 billion yuan.

At the same time, the district has issued several measures to support the development of small and medium-sized enterprises, guiding State-owned enterprises and market-oriented capital to provide investment, financing, talent, mergers and acquisitions, and other services for enterprises.

It has established a 10 billion yuan private enterprise development fund, as well as a financial innovation service supermarket for private technology-based SMEs.

Recently, the district has introduced a 10 billion yuan State-owned capital venture capital fund in the Bay Area, focusing on industrial investment in strategic emerging industries such as intelligent manufacturing, advanced manufacturing and new-generation information technology.

Leading companies

This year, the district has implemented investment attraction in emerging industries such as hydrogen energy, new energy storage, the low-altitude economy, artificial intelligence, cultivating future industries and accelerating the formation of more productive forces to the construction of a modern industrial system.

On June 21, the 25-gigawatt photovoltaic cell project led by TCL Zhonghuan Semiconductor, with an investment of more than 10 billion yuan, started construction in the district.

This is the first large-scale photovoltaic manufacturing project in Guangzhou. It is planned to be completed and put into operation in 2024, with an estimated output value of more than 10 billion yuan.

The new energy storage industry is becoming a new growth pole for industrial development in the district, driving the upgrading of the green industry cluster. In September, the district was awarded the title of "2023 Green and Low-Carbon Demonstration Zone" by the China Council for International Investment Promotion.

The district is embracing the low-altitude economy industry. In October, China's civil aviation administration issued the EH216-S type unmanned aerial vehicle system model certificate to Guangzhou EHang Intelligent Technology, making it the world's first aerial vehicle to obtain this type of certificate.

In November, the district signed a contract for the Daxin helicopter project. It is to introduce an assembly line, maintenance center and delivery center of the German company AutoGyro.

At present, the low-altitude economy's industrial chain in the district has many leading companies in R&D design, basic software, complete machine manufacturing, communication and navigation fields.

Meanwhile, an intelligent connected vehicle and autonomous driving industry is another focus of investment attraction. At the 2023 Global Investment Promotion Conference for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, the T3 travel headquarters project settled in the district.

The project includes operation, R&D and settlement. It will focus on the five major sectors of smart travel, intelligent connected vehicles, autonomous driving, digital technology and vehicle services. In the next five years, it is expected to generate revenue of more than 80 billion yuan.

To boost the new economy and new industries, the district is cultivating fertile ground for enterprise development and has issued a series of favorable policies such as the 30 Measures for High-Quality Development; 10 Measures for Hydrogen Energy; 10 Measures for Energy Storage; 10 Measures for Metaverse; 10 Measures for Computing Power and Algorithms; and 10 Measures for Low-Altitude Economy. These provide support in terms of settlement incentives, R&D, operation, rent and application promotion subsidies.


The view of Guangzhou Development District. LI JIANFENG/FOR CHINA DAILY

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