The main objective of this article is to examine the needs for further development in Pearl River Delta and how the policies of the Hong Kong and other local governments can be adapted to enhance further developments between their two jurisdictions.


BY SUNNY LAM | July 2012 

Pearl River Delta

The Pearl River Delta plays a remarkable leading role and has an important strategic status in the overall effort ofChinato pursue economic and social development. The Pearl River Delta economic growth is intensifying the challenges of urban policy. Mass migration to the cities is leading to urban sprawl, the loss of arable land, and spiraling demand for energy and natural resources, as well as contributing to the challenge of providing social services. In term of competition against other inland cities, It will likely become even easier to convince labor-intensive manufacturers to move inland, as the rising costs currently affecting the Pearl River Delta region show no sign of slowing. It’s time for policy makers to rethink their approach to these problems and to the direction that urbanization has taken so far. The economic interaction between Hong Kong and the Pearl River Delta region has become increasingly extensive since the onset ofChina’s reform programme.

The absence of a regional identity causes one of the obstacles to greater interaction betweenHong Kongand the Pearl River Delta region. Without such a sense, it is difficult to identify common interests, common goals or common challenges. A regional identity that includes bothHong Kongand the Pearl River Delta region is vital to achieving the higher levels of interaction. One of the reasons for the success of the Pearl River Delta region has been the development of a strong division of various development at different levels. The variation of development has allowed different places to do what they do best and has contributed to the overall efficiency of the region. The governments within the region should understand that each part of the region has its own advantages and disadvantages, and that the region as a whole. The idea should be for each policy maker to develop what it can uniquely develop that contributes to local and regional prosperity. This type of development holds the opportunity of a region that is more than the sum of its parts, rather than one beset by too much imitation and duplication. In order to increase understanding within the region, exchanges, and cooperative projects of several types should be encouraged. Government to government exchanges, student exchanges, academic exchanges, social and cultural exchanges, and business exchanges could all serve to foster greater understanding within the region.

Regional transformation – In the medium term, the Pearl River Delta region is trying to move up in the value-added chain. Pearl River Delta has a reputation of being the world factory. However, this factory will move up its ladder due to the modernization progress. The Central Government launched over 500 projects with a total investment of RMB 1.2 trillion forGuangdong in the 12th Five-Year Plan. All these projects caused momentum movement toward industrial upgrading and the development of new industries. The Five-Year Plan also supports the development of aShenzhen-Hong Kong Innovation Circle. Hong Kong further enhances its springboard position attracts overseas companies to set up research offices linking with local higher education institutions with the industrial parts are planned for Shenzhen, Qianhai, Zhuhai, Hengqin, Guangzhou, Nansha, and Hetao where provide relatively cheap labours.   There will be a lot more innovation and technology injected into the manufacturing process, and the whole manufacturing sector will be upgraded. This tie in with the development of the regional economy. There will be more up-steam manufacturing. There will also be a major transforming of the whole manufacturing sector within the region, with some of the more labour-intensive manufacturing cascading down into other parts of the region. There is room for co-operative project allocating suitable resources into different parts of the region due to the foreseeing regional variation. Following current trends, economic development will be dispersed with less-developed cities slowly catching up. Effective co-operative further development will be the dominant driver of healthy economic growth.


*Published in POLITICAL REFLECTION MAGAZINE (PR) | VOL. 3 | NO. 3
© Copyright 2012 by CESRAN
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