Following years of exponential growth, businesses in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area now see an even clearer path to making the region a world-class city cluster as the nation strives for high-quality development as laid down in Xi Jinping’s report at the opening session of the Communist Party of China’s 20th National Congress.
Zhao Chenxin, deputy head of the National Development and Reform Commission, told a news conference in Beijing that considerable progress has been made in the 11-city Greater Bay Area in the past five years in building key cooperation platforms, setting up a sci-tech innovation center, creating a modern industrial system, and boosting connectivity.
As one of the world’s wealthiest city clusters, the Greater Bay Area has a GDP that hit 12.6 trillion yuan ($1.74 trillion) last year – 2.4 trillion yuan more than in 2017 – according to Guangdong province’s Development and Reform Commission.
As the next step, the nation will ramp up efforts to make the Greater Bay Area an exemplary model of high-quality development, focusing on promoting technological innovation, boosting coordinated industrial development, and improving people’s livelihoods, Zhao said.
His remarks came a day after the CPC convened its 20th National Congress on Sunday, when the Party unveiled its blueprint for building a modern socialist country in all respects for the next five years and beyond.
The event, held once every five years, is the first national congress of the CPC since the Party’s centenary in 2021, as it led the nation to achieve the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all aspects.
Zhao said the country will fully support the participation of the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions in the Greater Bay Area’s construction, offering broader development space and injecting impetus into their development.
Xi’s report, which stresses that “one country, two systems” will be upheld and improved, has drawn wide acclaim from HKSAR government officials and business leaders.
Financial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said “one country, two systems” is an institutional advantage of the nation, as well as Hong Kong’s pillar of success.
“History has proved that under the leadership of the CPC and with the staunch support of our country, Hong Kong has managed to ride out storms and rise to challenges,” Chan said in his Sunday blog.
Hong Kong needs to give fuller play to its strengths and speed up development in the same direction of the county’s high-quality development trend, particularly in the face of the prevailing complex and volatile international environment, he said.
“Hong Kong has to strengthen cooperation with the mainland and overseas countries, highlight the role of innovation and technology in fostering economic development, and coordinate and implement policies in a holistic manner so as to better leverage Hong Kong’s position and advantages as our country’s international financial center as well as international innovation and technology hub,” Chan said.
Lawmaker Tan Yueheng, who is also chairman of Bank of Communications International, said the achievements of “one country, two systems” and the principles for Hong Kong’s development reiterated in Xi’s report are worthy of further study and understanding by all sectors in the city.
Echoing Xi’s pledge of full support for Hong Kong’s moves to ensure future prosperity and stability and resolve deep-seated problems in economic and social development, Tan said the SAR could take multipronged approaches to actively integrate into the national development plan, develop green finance, and enhance the city’s status as a world trading center and shipping hub.
Macao officials have also welcomed Xi’s report, saying it points out a bright direction for the future development of Macao and provides fundamental guidance for promoting the successful practice of “one country, two systems” in the new era.
The strategic deployments in Xi’s report provide infinite opportunities for Macao to leverage its advantages for better development, said Ho Teng-iat, vice-chairman of the Committee for Liaison with Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan and Overseas Chinese under the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference.
She said she expects Macao to actively participate in the construction of the Belt and Road Initiative, the Greater Bay Area and the Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone in Hengqin, to promote the moderate diversification of Macao’s economy and to depict a new chapter of the successful practice of “one country, two systems” with Macao characteristics.
Ho said she looks forward to Macao’s deeper integration into the nation’s overall development in accordance with the direction and blueprint set by the CPC’s 20th National Congress.
Chui Sai-cheong, deputy director of the Office of the Macao Basic Law Committee of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress and president of the Macao Chamber of Commerce, said, “Xi’s report provides fundamental guidelines for promoting the successful practice of ‘one country, two systems’ in the new era.”
“One country, two systems” must be adhered to in the long run, as well as supporting Hong Kong and Macao in developing their economies, improving people’s livelihoods, and solving deep-rooted conflicts and problems in economic and social development, he said.
This article is retrieved from: https://www.chinadaily.com.cn/a/202210/21/WS63520e91a310fd2b29e7dcc7.html on October 26th, 2022