Push to become hi-tech manufacturing base

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 25 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 25 April, 2012, 12:00am


Chengdu's growth story continues with the Tianfu New District development, a huge new business district that will spread over more than 1,500 square kilometres of land to the south of the city. The new district will be built from existing development zones, towns and villages, using modern manufacturing and liveability.

Plans for the new district envision a three-phase process in which the first phase, from 2011-2015, will strengthen the existing infrastructure and manufacturing base of the Chengdu Hi-Tech Industrial Development Zone in preparation for a major push south and east. The second phase, from 2016-2020, will be when the major new developments, such as the Singapore-Sichuan Hi-Tech Innovation Park, are realised. The third phase, from 2021-2030, will be a period for re-entrenchment, analysis and completion of the new city's business, residential and manufacturing districts.

Tianfu New District is more than an hour's drive south of the current outskirts of Chengdu city. Much of the land now devoted to agriculture and light industry will be turned into manufacturing bases for electronics, software and biotechnology. High-end research and development facilities and mixed-use business complexes will round out the district's economy, making the area attractive for large companies that want to cluster their operations.

By 2015, Chengdu's information industry will have an income in excess of 1 trillion yuan (HK$1.22 trillion). Much of this business will come out of existing development zones and companies that have a long-standing relationship with the city, such as Dell, Foxconn, Lenovo and Alltech. With the added capacity of the Tianfu New District, Chengdu hopes to become one of the world's major hi-tech manufacturing bases.

The eastern edge of the new district will be devoted to tourism and ecology. Longquan, in particular, will benefit from the government's dedication to a 'modern garden city' concept. For Chengdu, the garden city involves multiple green belts, designated ecological areas devoted to tourism and the expansion of the city's flower manufacturing and bed and breakfast models. These two models have helped farmers to remain on their land and profit from the natural setting.

Developing the ecological and tourism aspects of the new district are in keeping with Chengdu's ambitions to create a world-class manufacturing base for Fortune 500 firms and incorporate liveability into the plan.