Business / Economy

Qianhai tightens connect between Shenzhen and Hong Kong

By Zhao Tingting ( Updated: 2014-12-05 17:48

To further strengthen the partnership between the cities of Shenzhen and Hong Kong, the Authority of Qianhai issued a new plan to boost cooperation between the two sides in Beijing on Thursday.

The plan calls for the over 9 million square meters of construction to be developed by Hong Kong-funded and Hong Kong-based companies in the Qianhai Shenzhen-Hong Kong Modern Service Industry Cooperation Zone by 2020. The plan also expects that the service business scale of Hong Kong-funded companies will surpass 100 million yuan and over 100 Kong-funded creative companies will be hatched within the Qianhai cooperation zone.

In order to let Hong Kong-based companies get more involved in businesses in the zone, no less than one third of land in the zone will be sold to Hong Kong-based companies.

"The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau mega region is a hub to implement the country's 21st Century Maritime Silk Road campaign. Shenzhen is the bridgehead and Qianhai is the pivot", said Xu Qin, mayor of Shenzhen.

The new zone was approved by the State Council, China's cabinet in 2010 to develop a new financial and commercial hub, which will offer low corporate taxes, tax-free working, and a strong legal regime with nearby Hong Kong.

Given "national strategic importance" by the central government, Qianhai saw accelerating economic growth this year. In the first 11 months of this year, there were 14, 225 new registered companies with 1.2 trillion yuan registered capital in Qianhai, up 300 percent and 340 percent, respectively, compared with the amount of the end of last year.

According to Zhang Bei, head of the Authority of Qianhai, the challenge in involving Hong Kong-based business is the screening process.

"How to screen genuine Hong Kong-based enterprises is really a challenge for us, as Hong Kong is a very cosmopolitan economy with foreign-funded, mainland-funded and local enterprises," said Zhang. "We will carry out more detailed communication and explanation to some local large and powerful real estate developers in Hong Kong and set up more detailed conditions for investment."

Responding to rumors over an impending Guangdong Free Trade Zone, which the Qianhai zone might be a part of, Xu said he is not sure when it will be approved by the central government.

"Although Qianhai didn't get the legal authorization of free trade zone yet, the current policy states that the business model behind the pioneering China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone can be copied," said Xu. "We hope that polices summed up during the one-year-plus implementation of the FTZ can be adapted to Qianhai in the future."

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