Prioritizing the Manufacturing Sector
Despite a Covid pandemic which saw several closures of important parts of important cities, what we’ve seen in Guangdong over the last few years is incredible. The 2021 growth was 8% making Guangdong a larger economy than those of Italy and South Korea. The economy grew to almost 2 trillion US dollars. This is not something that happens when a region is struggling, this is robust and stable. The forecasts for 2022 were in the region of 5.5% and confirmed growth for the first half was 3.3%.
I don’t want to make this all about numbers but, when the Guangdong Government leaders meet to discuss what they’ve achieved and what they hope to achieve, numbers are important indicators. Of all the indicators in China, Guangdong’s numbers are the ones to watch, for 33 consecutive years, Guangdong has led the country in economic performance. So, if Guangdong goes well, so does China.
How Guangdong keeps improving and leading all the other provinces and regions of China is a combination of many factors, of course access to one of the three great rivers in China helps. The cities on both sides of the Pearl River are attractive to businesses looking for skilled workers, developed infrastructure and a wide range of port facilities supported by road transportation. Guangdong has them all.
These links are just a part of the success story of Guangdong. Three special cooperation platforms connect Guangdong to the international markets of Hong Kong and Macau and the Guangdong government focuses on special hybrid regulations in finance and law for these Zones. Business operations in Hengqin near Macau, Qianhai near Hong Kong and Nansha at the head of the Pearl River and the geographical centre of the Greater Bay Area can take advantage of these special policies and their unique forms of connectivity to the world.
High quality development and improvements of international and local laws protect Intellectual Property and provide financial stability and a solid history of growth attract both domestic and international and local businesses to set up here. Special tax, medical and residential conditions apply to overseas talent attracting more innovators and entrepreneurs to the region.
Historically, foreign investors have come to China seeking cost reductions and cheaper exports to their home markets but that is really starting to change now. As the country with the fastest growing economy in the world, still growing throughout the pandemic when so many other countries showed negative growth, China is a very good and stable location to invest.
Guangdong, as the largest economy inside China, is proving to be one of the best bets for international investors. And this is where China’s “Dual Circulation Economy” policy comes into play. The Guangdong Government has indicated it will improve the “Dual Circulation Economy”, giving foreign investors one of the greatest opportunities in history. They will have a chance to capitalise on the world’s largest middle class with purchasing power and those investors can produce, distribute and profit from products manufactured by skilled workers locally, while exporting easily through the incredible infrastructure.
Despite some predictions I’ve seen, the future of Guangdong looks like it will do what it always does; continue to improve and grow.