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Development of Outer Ring Areas (I): Future of Chongqing and its Position in the World

We will build a new city in Chongqing in ten years. The city proper of Chongqing will be divided into three major functional zones after the outer ring is open to traffic: approximately 300km2 within the inner ring expressway, approximately 2,000km2 between the inner ring expressway and the outer ring expressway, and approximately 3,000km2 out of the outer ring expressway. The zone within the inner ring expressway is the core area of the city proper, with high urbanization and industrialization, while the zones between the inner ring expressway and the outer ring expressway and out of the outer ring expressway are newly developed. Presently, an area of 500km2 has been completed within the outer ring expressway, with the permanent population of approximately 5 million, and a 1,000km2 metropolis with the population of 10 million will be built by 2020. It is equivalent to build another Chongqing and this will bring rare opportunities for Chongqing’s development by leaps and bounds. The city proper has developed in the valley between Nanshan, Tieshanping, Yufengshan and Geleshan for a long time and is restricted by the mountains in the east and west. “Northward Movement of Chongqing” now is the principle to expand the city proper. As the 75km inner ring expressway was open to traffic in the late 2002, the 186km outer ring expressway was open to traffic in the late 2009 and the crossing-mountain tunnels and crossing-river bridges have been completed, Chongqing has made further development, the development clusters between Jinyun Mountain, Zhongliang Mountain, Tongluo Mountain, Mingyue Mountain have been organically linked and merged on an overall basis, and the Chongqing New North Zone, the new town in the west, the eastern and southern regions have all embraced unprecedented development prospects. The outer ring expressway encircles 8 urban functional zones and 16 urban development clusters in the Overall Planning for Urban-Rural Development of Chongqing. It will not only reduce the pressure of present core area in the city proper, but also form a new economic growth pole. More emerging regions become the core area of the metropolis, such as Lianglu, Caijia, Yuelai, Lijia etc. in the north, Xiyong, Xipeng, Bafu etc. in the west, Yudong, Jiguanshi, Lijiatuo, Yipin etc. in the south, Chayuan, Yuzui, Jieshi etc. in the west, and Tiaodeng, Jiansheng etc. in the middle.
 
It marks a new era of Chongqing. It is the inevitable result of accelerated development as well as the important indicator of overall efforts for Chongqing to step into the development of outer ring areas. Chongqing has made great efforts in the past 10 years to increase the per capita GDP from USD 600 to USD 3,355; Chongqing will make essential change in the future 10 years to further increase the per capita GDP from USD 3,000 to USD 10,000. The per capita GDP of USD 3,000 is the worldwide generally accepted milestone for economic growth and social reconstruction (the USA reached this per capita GDP in the 1960s, the EU and Japan reached it in the 1970s, and Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea reached it in the 1980s). As we enter the stage of industrialization and accelerated urbanization, the consumption of consumer durable goods and luxuries, such as vehicles, will be active, the middle class will become the backbone, and the social structure will accelerate its transformation from “pyramid-shaped” to “olive-shaped”. For example, the Japanese per capita GDP reached USD 3,000 and they stepped into the era of “3C” featuring vehicles, color TV and air-conditioner. The per capita GDP of USD 10,000 is the important indicator for developed economy (Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea reached this per capita GDP in 1984, 1987, 1989, 1992 and 1995 respectively), and Shenzhen, Shanghai, Beijing etc. have also reached it one after the other. It is estimated that Chongqing’s per capita GDP will exceed USD 10,000 around 2018 since the population may grow sharply at the beginning and then slowly and Renminbi tends to appreciate. However, it is estimated that the region within the outer ring will reach the per capita GDP of USD 10,000 in 2014 (the per capita GDP of this region was USD 7,000 in 2009) and exceed USD 20,000 in 2018.
 
Chongqing will become the fifth largest city in China. The global economy will accelerate its restructuring amidst the world financial crisis and China’s economy will take the lead in achieving prosperity, which can gradually make Chongqing an important focus and wrestling stage of the world’s economy. In recent years, China will accelerate the economic strategies for rebuilding regions, the western, middle and eastern China will interact with each other and advance together more rapidly, and the eastern China will maintain its drive for China and brew a new round of sharp development. However, there is still great gap between the development of different regions, and it is the important factor for China’s overall development whether the western China’s development can achieve the transformation from quantitative change to qualitative change and create the super growth pole that can set an example for and drive the development of the middle and western China. Recently, Chongqing, Beijing, Tianjin, shanghai and Guangzhou are determined as China's core city, which results from the State’s overall planning at the new stage of scientific development. We develop Chongqing into a “double 10 million” super metropolis in the western China so as to re-prepare the plan on China’s urbanization and make Chongqing the backbone of western China as well as a new foundation of China’s strategies. As the sole municipality directly under the Central Government in the middle and western China, Chongqing’s position as a core city of China is also helpful for forming a Western Delta with Chengdu and Xi’an and thus creating a new “super engine” for China’s economic development.
 
We will create a new peak for China’s industry. As the development of outer ring areas is approaching, Chongqing’s industry is about to achieve the 1 trillion level, which will bring unprecedented opportunities for Chongqing’s accelerated construction of new industrial structure and development of new industrial advantages. Shanghai’s gross industrial output exceeded RMB 1 trillion in 2003, Photar and Inventec settled here, layout of IT industry was finished, and the effects of transformation and improvement of urban functions and adjustment of industrial layout were released on an accumulate basis. Tianjin’s gross industrial output exceeded RMB 1 trillion in 2007, Binhai New Area became the strategic support of the State, and the settlement of many multinational corporations and enterprises owned by the central government accelerated the industrial fission. Chongqing’s gross industrial output exceeded RMB 1 trillion in 2010, the effective policy leverage, including Liangjiang New Developed Area, Lianglu Cuntan bonded port and Xiyong comprehensive bonded zone, put Chongqing into a new stage of overall striving and improvement, and a group of industrial centers rose amidst the global competition. Let’s take HP for example. Xiyong will have the production capacity of 100 million portable computers by 2015, accounting for 1/2 of the global increment, which makes it possible for Xiyong to become the largest portable computer manufacturer in the world. Let’s take Liangjiang New Developed Area for example. It will have the production and sales capacity of 2.5 million vehicles by 2012, accounting for 1/5 of the national capacity, which makes Chongqing among the top three motor cities in China; the production and sales capacity of motorcycles will exceed 15 million, making Chongqing worthy of the title “City of Motorcycle”. In addition, there may also appear the national high-end industrial bases for helicopter manufacturing, major equipment manufacturing, TD, modern logistics, innovative finance etc.
 
We will strive to find new models for China’s reform. The development of outer ring areas will not only create huge space for Chongqing’s urban development, but also be the important opportunity for its balanced urban-rural development. The broad area between the Inner Ring Expressway and the Outer Ring Expressway will become the center for population agglomeration if we give non-agricultural status to more rural residents. The city develops from the center and then expands outwards. For example, Beijing takes Chang’an Street as the center and forms 6 rings gradually; inhabitancy, commerce and industries expand on a ring-shape basis and the areas around the fifth ring gradually become densely-populated; the planned seventh ring will border on Tianjin. The future 10 years will be the key period for Chongqing’s accelerated urbanization. The public rental housing between Inner Ring Expressway and Outer Ring Expressway, the development of new clusters and the rise of emerging industries will make this region the main space for population agglomeration amidst the functional transformation of core areas and the weakening bearing capacity. Five million residents will be attracted here and 20-30 dwelling areas with 200,000-300,000 population will be established. This region will become an important experimental site for solving problems related with China’s modernization, such as the household registration system and the unbalanced urban-rural development.
   

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