YANTAI: A new "high-end" development initiative was unveiled in Yantai late last week. The scheme will see the Shandong-based coastal city catapulted to the frontline of the country`s industrial centers.
Commenting on the scope of the plan, Zhang Jiangting, mayor of Yantai, said: "This strategic development initiative will establish an advanced industrial cluster prior to 2012. By 2015 it will have developed its own independent capacity for innovation and expansion."
Under the terms of the plan, Yantai will nurture and support a raft of the world`s leading brands. This will see the city establish a series of high-end industrial zones and businesses. These will include new hi-tech industries, advanced manufacturing companies and a modern services sector, all working in close proximity to create a new and innovative industrial chain.
The move would focus on the development of five hi-tech sectors in particular -- biotechnology, electronic information, new materials, new energy, energy-conservation and environmental protection.
Currently the turnover of these sectors, during the first six months of 2009, accounted for 189.3 billion yuan ($27.8 billion), with 77.3 billion yuan ($11.3 billion) coming from the existing Economical and Technological Development Zone. This represented year-on-year increases of 14.1 percent and 18.5 percent respectively.
Wang Xiuxun, deputy director of the Yantai Municipal Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation Bureau, said: "In the first half of the year a large number of locally made hi-tech products were exported to South Korea and Japan. These were worth $1 billion and $270 million respectively and showed increases of 120 percent and 83 percent."
The structures of the equipment manufacturing industry, including the city`s shipping, marine engineering, auto parts, special equipment, metallurgical and chemical sectors, are expected to be optimized in order to achieve a target revenue of 400 billion yuan ($58.8 billion). This would entail an annual growth of 12 percent and would also require more than 70 percent of its industrial output to comply with advanced national standards by 2011.
In line with the initiative, the modern services sector - involving logistics, financial services, tourism and exhibitions, service outsourcing and the cultural and creative industries - would receive a significant boost. As would companies working in the manufacture of 10 "priority" products - automotives, mobile phones, computers, foodstuffs, gold, wines, boats, MDIs, chemical fibers and nuclear power equipment.
Currently the city is home to a variety of high-end companies, including the Foxconn Industrial Park (FIP), the Dongyue Auto Works (DAW), LG and the Doosan Corporation, all of which have been expanding rapidly.
With an investment totaling $1.2 billion and an output value exceeding 70 billion yuan ($10.2 billion) as of last year, the FIP consists of a cluster of computers, game machines and mobile phone businesses and is estimated to turn over 168 billion yuan ($24.7 billion) of annual output, including $10 billion of annual foreign exchange earnings, by 2010,
Among the city`s other high-end companies, DAW now produces 300,000 sedan cars annually, whilst LG has a throughput of 30 million mobile phones per annum. In the industrial sector, Doosan is now the largest domestic mechanical digger manufacturer, producing 10,000 machines each year.
Work has already begun on new industrial clusters, including dedicated sites for the nuclear power generating equipment, offshore petrol platform and auto parts industries.