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Nansha is the new focus on cooperation between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao

Carol Law

The State Council recently published the “Master Plan for Deepening Soft Cooperation Between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao in Nansha” (hereinafter Master Plan for Nansha”), where it is mentioned that this port city will be transformed into a strategic platform for the Area of the Greater Bay for collaboration with Hong Kong and Macau. According to People’s Daily, this decision follows on from the proposal for the creation of cooperation zones in Hengqin and Qianhai: “A major decision by the Party Central Committee and State Council on the direction of the development of the Greater Bay in a broad and strategic perspective, to enrich the ‘One Country, Two Systems’ Principle, promote the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macao, and better integrate the two cities into national development”

The Master Plan for Nansha will cover the entire area of ​​Nansha District, Guangzhou, for a total of 803 square kilometers. The first areas to be implemented in the plan will be Nansha Bay, Qingsheng Center and Nansha Center, totaling around 23 square kilometers, in a region with access to Hong Kong through its transport system.

The short-term objective is that by 2025 it will be possible to improve the mechanisms and systems of scientific and technological innovation for Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau in Nansha, deepen the level of cooperation in entrepreneurship and youth employment, accelerate the concentration of quality resources in areas such as education and health and create a new center where the youth of Hong Kong and Macao can live and work based on the law of the market.

Subsequently, it is expected that by the year 2035, Nangsha’s capacity to transfer and transform these successes also in the areas of science and technology will be deepened, as well as contributing to the establishment of a greater number of Hong Kong and Macao residents in the region and become a platform for comprehensive cooperation between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao.

To achieve these goals, the Master Plan for Nansha sets five goals: industrial cooperation in innovation and technology, creation of a platform for youth employment and entrepreneurship, a new level of international openness, a platform for linking and connectivity between legal and regulatory systems. and high-quality urban development for greater joint innovation in science and technology between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao.

The Port of Nansha is the main terminus of the Port of Guangzhou. According to the Greater Bay Area Portal, since November 2021, the Port of Nansha has opened doors to more than 130 international routes, among which more than 110 are still part of the ‘One Belt, One Route’ initiative, proving that this point has become a port center for container transport from Africa, Southeast Asia and the Mediterranean.

The Nanfang Daily also points out that with Nansha in the centre, it is possible to have access to 11 cities in the Greater Bay and five major international airports within a radius of 100 kilometers. In 2017, the 12th Party Congress in Guangdong proposed developing Nansha as a sub-center of Guangzhou, taking on the role of the city’s connecting point.

The media also reported that this year the Guangdong Southern Marine Science and Engineering Laboratory in Nansha completed a research grant worth 38 million renminbi to the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology for research projects in the province. Funding comes from Guangzhou city and district authorities, already distributed seven times over the past three years, totaling around 119 million renminbi.

Nansha also managed to create collaborations with 172 entities, including government departments, universities and social and trade associations in Hong Kong and Macau, with a total of 2000 internships for students from Hong Kong and Macau. There are already 10 bases, with more than 300 teams hired to work on youth innovation projects in Hong Kong and Macau.

Hengqin Deep Cooperation Zone promotes tax benefits

It is important to mention that the General Plan for Nansha of the State Council mentions joint innovation strengthening between Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau for the cultivation and development of high-tech industries, as well as “reductions in corporate income tax for 15% of companies in the incentivized industries”.

It should be noted that the Deep Cooperation Zone between Guangdong and Macau in Hengqin has recently implemented a “double 15 percent” tax benefit measure, i.e., in which the corporate income tax in certain eligible industries will be reduced to 15 percent. Also exempt from tax on personal income above this rate are qualified staff of excellence and shortage of national and foreign origin who work in the Cooperation Zone. For these resides

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