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Report: East China ranks top in developed counties

China Daily| Updated: July 28, 2023 L M S

Eastern regions in China, especially Jiangsu, Zhejiang and Shandong provinces, are ahead in bolstering their economic development, CCID Consulting said in its latest Research Report on the Competitiveness of China's Top 100 Counties in 2023 on Tuesday.

The coastal areas in East China have the largest number of counties making the list, including 23 counties or county-level cities in the top 100 located in Jiangsu — the most in the country — along with 16 counties in Zhejiang and 13 counties in Shandong.

According to the report, Cixi county in Zhejiang remained in first place among the 16 listed counties in the province and ranked seventh nationwide.

Cixi, whose GDP was about 125 billion yuan ($17.5 billion) in the first half of 2023, is known for its rapid development in the secondary industry, which achieved added value of 73 billion yuan during that period.

This county-level city has a strong economy with dozens of industrial clusters. For example, industrial enterprises earning more than 20 million yuan in revenue annually in the county produced a combined 324,700 metric tons of plastic products, 3.16 billion sets of rolling bearings, 31.4 million metal seals, 43,600 tons of metal fasteners and 10.4 million household electric fans last year.

Promoting the high-quality development of county-level economies plays an important role in promoting the high-quality development of the country's economy, Qiao Biao, vice-president of the CCID, said on Tuesday.

Besides maintaining the development of basic industries such as home appliances and automobiles and their components, Cixi has seized the opportunity to promote its high-quality development by expanding emerging industries, including health, intelligent equipment and new materials.

To boost county-level economies, Zhejiang has devised development strategies based on counties' regional resource advantages and forged an industry chain that suits the development of the region.

For example, Yiwu, ranked 11th on the list, is renowned as the world's largest small-commodities market, and Zhuji, following Yiwu on the list, is the nation's largest freshwater pearl processing and trading center.

Other county-level cities in Zhejiang, including Ningbo's Yuyao, Wenzhou's Yueqing, Jiaxing's Haining and Taizhou's Wenling, are listed among the top 20.

Fang Xiaoying contributed to this story.