Category Archives: Economy

Guangdong’s foreign trade revives

Guangdong’s foreign trade is picking up, albeit slowly. Provincial data show total imports and exports in the first four months of the year at 1.92 trillion yuan, a 9.8% YoY drop, but 2 percentage points better than the number reported at the end of March. By month, the YoY contraction in foreign trade has been steadily improving, from -15% in January-February, to -6% in March, and now -4.9% in April.

Part of the reason for this narrowing has been the pickup in exports of medical equipment, which in April were up 52% YoY, pharmaceuticals, up 67.9%, and masks, which jumped by four times the amount shipped a year ago.

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Guangzhou rated for industrial upgrading

Guangzhou has been recognized by the central government for its efforts to upgrade the city’s industrial structure in 2019, ranking among the top 10 nationwide. The city recorded 103.8 billion yuan of industrial investment last year, up 9.1% YoY. Of this, more than a third (35.42%) was spent on “technological transformation”: 36.8 billion yuan, which shot up 43% from the previous year. 

The investment has clearly had an effect on growth. This is especially in high-tech manufacturing, which saw output jump 21% over the year. It now accounts for more than half (57.2%) of total industrial output in the city. Strategic emerging industries are the ones to watch, though, as smartphones soared by 170%, industrial instruments by 147.5%, and new energy vehicles by 114.7%.

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Shenzhen, Dongguan lead job recovery

Shenzhen and Dongguan are the country’s leading cities for job-posting during the coronavirus recovery period, according to data from, with Guangzhou not far behind.

The top 10 cities are: Shenzhen, Dongguan, Beijing, Chongqing, Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shanghai, Zhengzhou, Changsha, and Hangzhou.

The industries advertising the most positions are wholesale and retail, manufacturing, and IT.

Wholesale and retail in particular has seen booming demand, the data showed. This is despite the slowdown and near-annihilation of shopping malls, as demand had shifted online to a large extent. Demand for medical materials and epidemic-prevention supplies has surged, while daily necessities have kept up. This was seen even in fresh food platforms, where online services had kept supplies flowing during the crisis.

The epidemic had also boosted innovative online recruitment channels, using AI, VR, and live video.

Read more (in Chinese).

Nansha leads Guangzhou growth

Guangzhou’s fiercely competitive districts are one reason why the provincial capital was able to remain so resilient in a tough external environment last year. Every year the city publishes its rankings of them, based on GDP, both in absolute terms and growth. In 2019, the southernmost district, Nansha, came out tops in growth but still had some distance to catch Tianhe, according to official data. 

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Huizhou plans new 100b yuan cluster

Huizhou is building a new industrial park in its Huiyang district that will be generating 100 billion yuan in output within the next 5-8 years, local media reported the city’s government as saying. Clustered on the district’s Sanhe street, it will actually be a collection of buildings and production facilities: Huiyang Xiangling Intelligent Science and Technology Industrial Area, Huaxia-Shunze Information Industry Cluster Area, and Wandong Wisdom Valley Industrial Area.

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Zhuhai grows 6.8%, upbeat on services

Zhuhai got a boost last year from the final stages of construction of the Hengqin Railway Station, which is due to open soon, but its economy has also been doing surprisingly well thanks to growth in tech manufacturing and services, latest preliminary data shows.

The city’s leadership announced this week GDP growth of 6.8%, putting Zhuhai tied with Foshan and behind only Dongguan and Shenzhen (+7% each) among the GBA’s fastest-growing cities.

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Shenzhen mayor says city just changing gears

Shenzhen’s mayor, Chen Rugui, sees no cause for concern in the city’s recent economic slowdown, pointing out that quality is more important than quantity. Industrial upgrading is causing some challenges as traditional industries either become more valuable through infusions of technology, or move out of the city, yet the mayor is upbeat about the future.

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Shenzhen to keep investing, while ‘considering private participation’

Shenzhen will see fixed-asset investment continue to grow strongly in 2020, the city government says, with projects under way budgeted to cost around 177 billion yuan, 23% more than 2019. 

Infrastructure will be a big part of this, including 12 rail transit projects under construction. Others include the redevelopment of Binhai Avenue in Nanshan, where the futuristic Shenzhen Bay Headquarters Base is being built, and the establishment of a National Science Center in the Guangming “Science City” district. 

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