Expanding value chain, upping investment goals
Big production bases draw in up, downstream companies to boost growth
Weifang Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone achieved outstanding economic results in the first 10 months of 2017 with support from leading businesses, professional industrial parks and State-owned companies.
By the end of October, 139 new high-end projects were confirmed, which are set to launch operations in the zone in the near future. In the same period, construction work on 26 projects started, with total investment of 19.13 billion yuan ($2.89 billion).
In the first three quarters of 2017, about 3.4 billion yuan was invested in the zone, which is about 43 percent higher than the annual target set by the zone for the whole year.
The zone's authorities encourage industry leaders such as Shengrui Transmission and Weichai Group to build platforms to attract businesses along their value chains to the zone.
In March, Zhejiang Shuanghuan Driveline, one of the largest gear component producers in the world, and Shaanxi Aerospace Power Hi-tech signed agreements to launch factories in Shengrui's 8-gear auto transmission industrial park.
Statistics from the zone's authorities show that nine companies settled in Shengrui's industrial park, with total investment surpassing 3.3 billion yuan as at the end of November.
One of those is Shandong Ruipu Precision Machinery. The company's products had to be transported from Hangzhou, Zhejiang province to the zone before it launched a plant base in Shengrui's industrial park.
"Deliveries took four days and the logistics costs were high in previous years," said Tang Liping, assistant to the general manager of Ruipu. "We now have lower logistics costs and we can help clients to solve technical problems in a quicker manner."
Weichai Power is planning to construct China's largest new energy motor plant, covering 333 hectares in the zone. The construction process will involve a 50 billion yuan investment by 2030. The industrial park will also have a world-leading hydrogen fuel cell plant and a new energy innovation and testing center, according to the company.
Goertek, a leading precision component and wearable devices producer in China, is also investing in several projects based at the zone. These include the second phase of its smart hardware industrial park, its research and development headquarters and a virtual reality culture industrial park, to support its growth.
The Sunshine Insurance Group plans to work with its Israeli partners to develop its health city project. It will build hospitals and academic institutions to expand its industrial chain.
Specialized industrial parks in the zone, such as a software park and Blue Wisdom Valley, have become key platforms to serve leading businesses. Some high-growth companies have been attracted to the zone, such as Jonca Automation Technology.
In the first 10 months of 2017, 69 projects signed agreements to move into these specialized industrial parks. By the end of October, construction work on seven business projects started, with a total investment of 5.3 billion yuan.
State-owned companies in the zone, including Weifang Hi-tech Zone Financial Investment Holding and Weifang Hi-tech Zone Urban Construction and Development, made significant investments to add more business service platforms to the map.
Construction of a small financial town developed by State-owned Shandong Hitech Innovation to support development of the local financial industry took less than three months.
"We want to develop the town into a long-standing project and a new landmark of the zone," said Cheng Hui, chairman of Shandong Hitech Innovation.
The company has achieved outstanding results in industrial park construction over the past few years, building projects such as the financial square and geographical information industrial park.
The zone said it will continue to optimize its business environment to attract more companies.
Wang Yuzhi, deputy director of the zone's investment promotion bureau, said that the zone will explore new ways to attract investment to support the region's growth.
Liu Jing contributed to this story.
A technician at Shengrui Transmission checks components of the company's 8-gear auto transmission in the Weifang Hi-tech Industrial Development zone.Photos Provided To China Daily
(China Daily 12/07/2017 page10）