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Shanghai has global credentials

( China Daily USA ) 2014-10-21

Shanghai is projected to become an international economic, financial, trade and transportation center by 2020, according to the government's plan.

On this base, some experts said at the Oct 11 seminar, that Shanghai can become a center of innovation, resource distribution, and financial management and information exchange by 2050.

"Some famous cities are only a regional international city, not global city yet, such as Hong Kong and Frankfort," said Zhou Zhenhua, director of the Shanghai development strategy institute. "My research shows Shanghai has the conditions to surpass these cities and become a global city."

"Shanghai has already become an important hub city in the economic world in terms of its scale," said Wu Jiang, vice-president of Shanghai-based Tongji University. "Although Shanghai has the conditions to become a global city, there remains gap between Shanghai and some world-class cities in structural competitiveness."

According to Globalization and World Cities, a UK-based academic think tank on cities in globalization, Shanghai has risen to a second-class city, 6th in the world in 2012 from a fourth-class city, 20th in the world in 2000.

Wu Jiang thinks Shanghai should continuously improve its importance and dominance in the globalized economic and cultural systems, especially its ability to allocate various resources.

It was a consensus among speakers at the seminar that Shanghai should invite more global enterprises, international financial agencies and world-class productive service enterprises to set up their headquarters, regional headquarters and research and development centers in Shanghai. International exhibitions, conferences and tourism are effective ways to enhance Shanghai's popularity in the world, according to speakers?

"In the next 30 years, Shanghai's downtown area will expand to the current suburban areas of Minhang and Baoshan. The Jiading, Songjiang and Qingpu districts will become the next zone for Shanghai's expansion," said Wu.

Apart from the seminar, the Shanghai government organizes more than 70 research teams from universities and institutes to conduct special reviews of 42 issues key to Shanghai's future.

All results are assessed by a panel of experts from the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, the Shanghai Administration Institute, Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, East China Normal University, Fudan University and the Shanghai Academy of Development and Reform.

The Shanghai government also invites the State Council Development Research Center (SCDRC) and the World Bank to evaluate development goals for Shanghai.

Experts of the SCDRC said Shanghai's geological position at the mouth of the Yangtze River, internationalization, rich talent resources and the central government's support are unique advantages of the city.

Shanghai has the conditions to become global economic center like New York and London. It can be a model city for the harmonious co-existence of different cultures, good governance and innovation

The broad spectrum of the research participants ensures that the final research results and development plan will be more rational and balanced.

The research, evaluation and discussion processes are all transparent to the public. In many other places in China, the development of a city or a county is largely made by the government itself behind closed doors.

(China Daily USA 10/17/2014 page6)

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