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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Opinion -> 
Rome was not built in a day
    2017-03-27  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

    Winton Dong

    dht620@sina.com

    DURING the annual session of the National People’s Congress earlier this month in Beijing, Premier Li Keqiang pledged to push forward the goal of developing the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area as part of the Central Government’s strategy to achieve better regional collaborations in the country.

    In modern society, all of the well-developed city clusters are located in bay or river areas. So it is not strange that such an ambitious vision has sparked heated debate in the world. The vast project also aims to put the affluent region in South China on the road to replicate the successful story of the world’s three leading bay areas, namely, the New York Bay Area, the San Francisco Bay Area and the Tokyo Bay Area.

    With New York City as the center, the New York Bay Area concentrates more than 20 percent of the total population of the United States and had a GDP of about US$1.6 trillion in 2016. It boasts Manhattan, Broadway, Wall Street, Central Park, the Empire State Building, Fifth Avenue, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Columbia University, New York University and many other famous names in the world. Out of the Fortune 500, 56 multinationals, mainly financial companies such as JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, American Express and New York Life Insurance, have their headquarters in New York.

    The San Francisco Bay Area refers to the region on the West Coast of the United States with a GDP of about US$800 billion in 2016. It mainly consists of San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose. According to statistics, out of the Fortune 500, 28 multinationals, mainly high-tech companies such as HP, Apple, Google, Intel, Yahoo, Oracle, Cisco, Adobe, Ebay and Sun Microsystems, have their headquarters in the bay area. The region also boasts blue-chip higher-learning institutions such as Stanford University and the University of California’s Berkley, Davis and San Francisco campuses.

    As for the Tokyo Bay Area, it mainly includes Tokyo, Yokohama, Chiba County and some other places nearby. The bay area boasts a population of 38 million and 40 percent of the total GDP of Japan. Many famous companies such as NEC, Sony, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Honda, Nissan, Canon and SoftBank are located in the region. The bay area also has famous schools such as Tokyo University, Waseda University and other higher-learning institutions to back up its research and development.

    The Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area comprises of two special administrative regions (Hong Kong and Macao) and nine cities in the Pearl River Delta (Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Jiangmen and Zhaoqing). With a total area of 56,511 square kilometers and 85 million inhabitants, its GDP reached US$1.4 trillion in 2016.

    Rome was not built in a day. Despite the fact that many cities in the planned Chinese bay area are very strong in terms of economic strength, there is still a long way to go for the whole region to break administrative restrictions, tear down the shackles of deep-rooted local protectionism, form industrial synergy, and facilitate free flows of talent, capital and other essential productive factors. From my point of view, to make the blueprint of the bay area achievable, we should pay special attention to three issues.

    Firstly, the Central Government must shoulder the responsibility of being a coordinator. It is unimaginable that within a radius of 200 kilometers in the bay area, there are four strong cities, namely Hong Kong (GDP in 2016 was HK$2.4025 trillion, or about 2.1899 trillion yuan), Guangzhou (GDP in 2016 was 1.961 trillion yuan), Shenzhen (GDP in 2016 was 1.9492 trillion yuan) and Macao (one of the most famous gambling capitals in the world). As a famous saying goes, “When tiger meets tiger, then comes the tug of war.” Under this circumstance, the Central Government’s function as the lubricant among these big cities is of vital importance for the success of the bay area.

    Secondly, while every city within the scope wants to find its correct position to try to get a bigger slice of the pie, it is very important for us to avoid redundant construction and to form industrial synergy. To build a successful bay area, we need not only talent, manufacturing and financial support, but also high and new technologies, airports and deep-water sea ports. Nevertheless, that does not necessarily mean that every city within the region should overlap and develop all of these sectors. Based on their own strong points, the development of various cities in the bay area should be mutually complementary but not totally rivaling, so as to form a perfect combination of various resources.

    Thirdly, both confidence and patience are important for China to turn the concept of the Greater Bay Area into reality. And sometimes patience is much more important than confidence. Construction of the New York Bay Area kicked off in the 1930s and its development has lasted for more than 80 years. Even the youngest Tokyo Bay Area, which was initiated in the 1950s, is 60 years old now.

    (The author is the editor-in-chief of the Shenzhen Daily and guest professor of Shenzhen University with a Ph.D. from the Journalism and Communication School of Wuhan University.)

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