Qianhai beckons HK, Macau residents

Shenzhen’s special zone of Qianhai has rolled out a series of inventives and special measures aimed at attracting residents from Hong Kong and Macau. They cover a wide range of activities, such as home-buying, education, professional qualifications, and science and technology development.

Most attractive is that residents of Hong Kong and Macau will be treated the same as locals in buying apartments in Qianhai. A married couple will be able to buy up to two apartments with no restrictions, while a single person will be able to buy one.

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Dongguan cross-border e-commerce keeps surging

Dongguan’s cross-border e-commerce industry continues to accelerate, with its key bonded logistics centre in Shatian seeing exponential growth, according to local media. Located inside the Binhaiwan Bay Area, one of the ten cores of the GBA masterplan’s Science and Technology Innovation Corridor, the center has recorded 1.6 million packages delivered for the year ended November 30, almost six times the total volume of last year. 

It is not only happening in Shatian. Since Dongguan was designated a national-level pilot zone for the cross-border e-commerce industry last July, a number of bonded logistics centres, which are duty-free, have been opened in Qingxi, Humen, and Fenggang town. Humen’s is a national-level zone.

With imported goods entering the bonded parks via “fast track” channels, without customs declaration, processing times have been sharply shortened, said Huang Guohua, deputy director of Shatian’s customs, as quoted by local media.

According to official data, total cross-border e-commerce trade in Dongguan hit 37.01 billion yuan last year, up 133% YoY. The number for the first nine months this year totalled 29 billion, retaining the top spot across the country.

Jiangmen seeks HQ firms

Jiangmen is offering subsidies of up to five million yuan to companies setting up their headquarters in the city. 

According to the policy, companies in Jiangmen will be able to enjoy various rewards and subsidies after being identified as “headquarters enterprises”. These range from cash payments upon establishment of between 100,000 yuan to 2 million, to rewards for bringing in talent, to rental and office purchase subsidies worth as much as 5 million yuan.

Jiangmen is keen to attract companies to establish their headquarters in the city because, according to local media, it “improves the operational efficiency of foreign-invested companies”, while at the same time “optimizing resource distribution among different industrial chains.”

Read more (in Chinese)

09/12 Briefs

Macau explains AmCham ban: Macau’s security chief, Wong Sio-chak, said the city did not bar two leaders of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong from entering Macau on Saturday for any other reason than “safety risks and threats”. Read more on SCMP.

Evergrande reports: Property developer China Evergrande Group, which plans to become the world’s largest electric car maker, has declared a record dividend of 1.42 yuan per share totalling 18.7 billion yuan for fiscal year 2018. Read more on Bloomberg.

Huawei opens source: Huawei’s homegrown system HarmonyOS, or Hongmeng, unveiled in August after losing access to Google apps and services under US restrictions, would open its source code for outside developers by next August, said Wang Chenglu, president of Huawei’s consumer business software on Sunday. Read more in Chinese.

Zhongshan 5G construction: China Mobile’s Zhongshan branch has signed agreements to cooperate with the country’s three leading smartphone makers, Huawei, Vivo and Oppo, in an effort to construct a comprehensive 5G network by the year end, covering major business districts and industrial parks in the city. Read more in Chinese.

Guangzhou South hub details released

Guangzhou unveiled today a detailed land plan for its new 1 trillion-yuan economic hub around the Guangzhou South Railway Station, with nine railway lines to be connected and a high-rise of 350 meters to be constructed. 

The “South Station Area” is being jointly developed by Guangzhou and Foshan, aimed at attracting companies from Hong Kong and Macau. In developing the “world’s best railway station”, the 36 sq km project will house s population of 335,000 and include 184 public service and municipal transportation facilities. A dozen old villages in the area will be completely renovated.  

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Huawei building AI research platform

Huawei Technologies has launched the second phase of its Peng Cheng Cloud Brain. Powered by its Atlas 900 platform, an AI “training cluster” consisting of thousands of self-made AI processors under the Kunpeng and Ascend brands, the laboratory has been dubbed by state media as “nuclear reactors and space stations” in the field of artificial intelligence. Research will be applied to a range of fields such as computer vision, natural language processing, autonomous driving, transportation, healthcare and manufacturing.

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GBA Briefs: 6/12/2019

HK-Thai digital currency: The Hong Kong Monetary Authority and Bank of Thailand are working to launch a two-tier digital currency, in a bid to facilitate the cross-border wholesale payment between banks and companies of the two sides through blockchain technology. The first tier involves issuing tokens to Hong Kong banks and the second involves distribution of tokens to companies. Read more on SCMP.

HKIA ambitious: Ambitious targets have been set for Hong Kong International Airport under the GBA plan – passenger growth from 75m to 120m, and tonnes of cargo doubling to 10 million by 2035, plus a third runway and commercial space of 4.1 million sq ft. This is despite the ongoing social unrest. Read more on SCMP.

Hengqin hospital: A new hospital opened yesterday on Hengqin island featuring 300 beds and experts deployed from the city’s public hospital. It is aimed at Macau residents in the special economic zone. Read more in Chinese.

GBA info: A new information platform has been launched to provide data on the economy and other issues, managed jointly by Hong Kong, Macau and Guangdong. Read more in Chinese. 

Guangdong rural economy: Guangdong plans to invest 9.6 billion yuan to boost its underdeveloped rural areas, with 8,526 enterprises in the province already partnered with 6,390 villages. Read more in Chinese.

Daya Bay to build AI industrial park

Huizhou’s city government is stepping up to the plate on artificial intelligence, establishing a new special industrial park in the Daya Bay district devoted to development of AI-related technologies. Yet it is doing this with a twist: the park is not for its own use, but to facilitate cooperation between neighboring Shenzhen and Hong Kong across a range of applications.

Situated along the coastline and bordering Shenzhen’s Dapeng district, Daya Bay is home to one of Huizhou’s key industrial development clusters in the petrochemicals industry. US-based multinational oil giant Exxon has a base here. The area has room to expand, and Huizhou has decided to use it for industrial upgrading.

The new AI park will cover a total planned area of about 10.8 sqkm in the western part of Daya Bay. Although the park is in the early stages of development, it is expected that priority will be given to the smart manufacturing and smart energy industries.

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‘Smart glasses’ debut at Shenzhen Bay Port

Smugglers, your days are numbered! Shenzhen is rolling out the trial use of special 5G-enabled scanners at one of its key border points with Hong Kong. According to local media, “smart cameras” and “smart glasses” are being used to detect suspicious goods at the Shenzhen Bay checkpoint, where some 158,000 people pass through every day.

The glasses and cameras are hooked up to a large database. Thanks to the fast connection enabled by the 5G network, officers wearing the glasses are able to get real-time updates on the passengers flowing through the checkpoint. When a suspicious one has been identified, they will receive a voice prompt from an earplug attached to the the glasses and a connected tablet will bring up the relevant information about the person. 

For all of this to work, of course, profiles need to be constantly built through the use of facial recognition software and other identifiers. The system allows frontline officers to target suspicious passengers and respond more quickly than before.

During the trial operation, Shenzhen Customs has reportedly seen a steady improvement in its ability to identify and seize illicit movement of goods. The system will be rolled out across the city’s multiple border checkpoints in the near future, and it is serving as a testbed for the entire country.

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GBA Briefs: 5/12/2019

Zhuhai CPI: Zhuhai’s CPI rose 1.1% in October and 3.7% YoY. The price of food, tobacco and wine surged by 14.3% YoY, leading to an impact of 4.54 percentage points on the overall CPI increase. Pork prices rose 17% from September. Read more in Chinese.

GBA focus for Macau: Macau should keep its eyes on the 56,000 sq km of land of the GBA rather than its own 33 sq km of land, says Macau’s newly appointed Finance and Economy Secretary Lei Wai Nong, while also highlighting the need for risk assessment. Read more in Chinese. 

Hengqin app: Alibaba has launched an app together with the Hengqin government, providing cross-border services for Macau residents going across to the special economic zone. It includes details on immigration procedures, as well as being a guide to the area. Read more in Chinese.

Huawei hits back: Huawei Technologies has filed a legal challenge against the decision of the US Federal Communications Commission to ban US wireless carriers from using government funds to buy Huawei products. Read more on Caixin.

Hengqin Port on track: The new Hengqin Port featuring joint checkpoints of mainland and Macau Customs and Immigration will open as scheduled on December 20, initially only for passengers, while cars and trucks will be able to pass through before the end of next year. Photos of the station’s interiors have been released by local media. Read more in Chinese.