China’s State Council has approved a proposal to turn Hengqin, adjacent to Macau, into an island of international tourism, according to a ruling released on Monday.
The statement from the State Council said that the development of Hengqin will help promote the economic diversification of Macau and become a demonstration zone for further integration in the Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macau Greater Bay Area.
A free trade pilot zone will also be established on the island, which covers an area of 106.46 square kilometres, according to the statement quoted by the Xinhua news agency.
Official figures show that Hengqin’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) reached 18.36 billion yuan (US$2.73 billion) in 2017, 64 times higher than in 2009.
Investment in fixed capital reached 41.23 billion yuan (US$6.13 billion), 21 times more than in 2009, while foreign direct investment (FDI) grew 972 times to US$670 million.
GDP in the first nine months of 2018 reached 17 billion yuan (US$2.53 billion), a year-on-year increase of 12%, with gross fixed capital formation rising 34% to 42.3 billion yuan (US$6.29 billion). (Macauhub)