Edmund Ho discusses Pearl River Delta cooperation in Zhuhai

11 December 2006

Macau, China, 11 Dec – The head of the Macau government, Edmund Ho, and the governor of Guangdong province, Huang Huahua, have agreed to improve the mechanisms for regional cooperation between Guangdong, Macau and Hong Kong, officials said.

During the first “Joint Guangdong-Macau Cooperation Conference 2006” held in Zhuhai over two days, Ho said that the cooperation mechanisms “will be boosted and developed even more over the next year (…) in order to improve and expand cooperation between Macau and Guangdong.”

During the conference, the two delegations defined priority cooperation projects for the near future, namely in the transport and road planning sector, particularly the construction of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge, the rail link from Zhuhai to Guangzhou and the possibility of a future link to the Macau light railway, the underwater pedestrian tunnel project in Zhuhai and the development of Hengqin Island near Macau.

Ho also took part in the official opening of the Zhuhai-Macau Cross-Border Industrial Park and the respective border posts.

The secretary of state for the economy and finance, Francis Tam, said that the Macau government hoped the industrial park “may contribute to gaining experience and more cooperation with Guangdong and Zhuhai, as well as serving as a services platform for cooperation between Macau and other provinces and cities in the Great Pearl River Delta.”

The “Macau-Guangdong Joint Cooperation Conference 2006” was held on December 8 and 9 in Zhuhai, a special economic are bordering Macau.

The Great Pearl River Delta includes Hong Kong, Macau and part of Guangdong province (including the municipal areas of Dongguan, Foshan, Guangzhou, Huizhou, Jiangmen, Shenzhen, Zhaoqing, Zhongshan and Zhuhai), a region which was opened up by the central government in 1978 to foreign trade and investment.

The Pearl River Delta, despite being locate din just 0.5 percent of the Chinese territory and having just 5 percent of the country’s population, accounts for 20 percent of China’s gross domestic product (GDP).

The population of the Pearl River Delta, which is estimated to total 50 million people, is projected to grow to 75 million within a decade. (macauhub)