An employee checks equipment at an air compressor production facility in Suzhou, Jiangsu province, in June. ZHAI HUIYONG/FOR CHINA DAILY
The demonstration zone for integrated ecological and green development in the Yangtze River Delta region, which was launched three years ago, has stepped up its high-quality development, driven by institutional innovation and the expansion of industry leaders, said government officials.
Comprising Qingpu district of Shanghai, Wujiang district of Suzhou, Jiangsu province, and Jiashan county, Zhejiang province, the demonstration zone was set up to better facilitate the integrated development of the Yangtze River Delta region, which was elevated as a national strategy in November 2018.
Over the past three years, the demonstration zone had an average annual GDP growth rate of 7.4 percent and the total industrial output of its companies with a minimum annual sales revenue of 20 million yuan rose 10.9 percent on a yearly basis, Hua Yuan, deputy secretary-general of the Shanghai municipal government, said at a news conference in Shanghai on Nov 15.
By the end of 2021, the demonstration zone was home to 2,411 national high-tech companies recognized by the Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Science and Technology, up 31.5 percent from a year earlier.
With a total investment of 563 billion yuan, a total of 108 key projects, including the Shanghai-Suzhou-Huzhou high-speed railway, have been introduced to the zone over the past three years.
More than 45.8 million yuan of technology innovation funding has been provided to the zone to aid the development of small and medium-sized technology companies.
Up to 112 institutional innovations have been nurtured in the area and 38 of them have been promoted nationwide.
"Industry leaders have played an important role in advancing industrial innovation across the area. New economic drivers have also helped to accelerate the area's high-quality development," said Hua.
"Companies are able to create an overall mapping throughout the demonstration zone thanks to the institutional innovations," he added.
According to Li Feng, deputy director of the Industry and Information Technology Department of Jiangsu New Vision Advanced Functional Fiber Innovation Center Co Ltd, his center was jointly established by Suzhou-based Shenghong Group and Shanghai-based Donghua University, and is one of the best examples showing the concerted efforts in the demonstration zone to strengthen industrial chains.
The center has managed to seek breakthroughs in key technologies in advanced textile materials, leading industrial development nationwide, he said.
A total of 13 key projects, including a new photovoltaic project in Wujiang, started construction on Nov 14. Total investment of the new projects is expected to exceed 20 billion yuan.