As three annual meetings of bilateral cooperation opened in Singapore Tuesday, China and Singapore are sure to be on the fast track for closer cooperation in intergovernmental projects.
The China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park and the Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City (SSTEC) have become two flagship projects between the two governments to promote cooperation in high-tech industries and sustainable development.
The Suzhou Industrial Park, the largest cooperative project between China and Singapore, was proposed by the late Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew and inaugurated in 1994 in east China's Jiangsu Province.
The park, which covers an area of 278 square kilometers and accounts for 3.4 percent of the city's land area, has created 15 percent of the city's GDP. Serving as a model for China's economic cooperation with foreign countries, it has so far attracted 26.7 billion U.S. dollars of foreign investment into 5,200 programs.
More than 90 of the Fortune top 500 enterprises have invested in 150 programs in the industrial park. In 2014, the park saw an economic growth of 8.3 percent with its gross domestic product (GDP) reaching 200 billion yuan (32.5 billion dollars) despite an overall economic slowdown in the country.
Its import and export volume hit 80.3 billion dollars during the same period, according to the administration committee of the park. The SSTEC is the second flagship government-to-government project between Singapore and China after the Suzhou Industrial Park.
The two countries signed a framework agreement in 2007 to jointly develop the eco-city. The eco-city features its new industries which are different from the Suzhou Industrial Park. It clusters culture industries including movies and animation sectors, financial industries, new energy and green industries and internet industry.
Located in north China's port city of Tianjin, the eco-city is planned to become a full city on a land of 30 square kilometers, according to Ho Tong Yen, chief executive officer of Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City Investment and Development Co., Ltd, the project's developer. So far 8 square kilometers, or about a fourth of its total land area has been developed but not all of the developed areas are occupied since many lots are reserved for future use, he said.
Before its development, the site was barren land with some salt beds and a polluted body of water that includes a wastewater pond of 2.6 square kilometers. Though still a fledgling town, the Tianjin eco-city is regarded as the forerunner of eco-city construction by Yin Zhengxiu, office director of the United Nations Sustainable Development.
The eco-city is designed to accommodate 350,000 people, with about 40 percent of the land for residential purposes, 10 percent for sustainable industries and 3 percent for commercial businesses.
The leading Chinese search engine -- Baidu.Com Inc. planned to set up a literature and game business center there and move its literary editing team and game research and development team into the eco-city.
Beijing Science Park Development (Group) Co., Ltd. and Teda Investment Holding Co., Ltd. will also jointly invest and build a Sino-Canada low-carbon eco-area in the eco-city.
As China's first green development demonstration zone, the eco-city will also make efforts to expand tourism, energy saving and environment protection, health services and ocean economy fields and attract more green industries.