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Hunan's Prosperity Roadmap
Hunan's fast progress over the past decades has laid a solid foundation to achieve these targets
 NO. 9 March 3, 2016

 People celebrate the Dawuliang Singing Festival of the Dong Ethnic Group in Tongdao Dong Autonomous County on April 16, 2015 (LIU GUILIN)

As of 2020, Hunan's gross regional product and per-capita income of its rural and urban residents will double from the level of 2010; modernization will be basically realized in the Changsha-Zhuzhou-Xiangtan region in central-eastern part of the province; impoverished counties in the province will be lifted out of poverty; and Hunan as a whole will take the lead nationwide in building a resource-efficient and environment-friendly society. All these efforts will make sure that a moderately prosperous society in all respects will be built in the province as scheduled and that local citizens will become more affluent.

Hunan's fast progress over the past decades, particularly in the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-15) period, has laid a solid foundation to achieve these targets. In 2015, the province's gross regional product stood at 2.9 trillion yuan ($444 billion), per-capita income of its urban and rural residents reached 28,838 yuan ($4,415), and 10,993 yuan ($1,683), value added of industrial enterprises above the designated size--principal business revenue of more than 20 million yuan ($3 million) a year--totaled 1.1 trillion yuan ($168 billion), and about 5.41 million people were lifted out of poverty.

Workers assemble the first high-speed train to be exported to Europe at a factory of the CRRC Zhuzhou Institute Co. Ltd. on August 26, 2015 (GUO LILIANG)

New era

The 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) period is crucial for completing the building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, especially when the ongoing economic transformation faces an uphill road. Efforts should be made to dig into the changes of internal and external conditions, make clear the challenges faced on the path of regional development, actively cope with the economic growth slowdown, explore new advantages and persistently speed up development.

The outline of Hunan's 13th Five-Year Plan highlights the development concepts of innovation, coordination, environmental friendliness, opening up and sharing. It also clarifies Hunan's new role in national development that is the transitional zone between eastern coastal regions and central and western regions as well as the joint part of the Yangtze River Economic Belt and the Coastal Economic Belt. Major objectives listed in the document include elevating the economic aggregate, improving the quality of development, increasing resident's per-capita income, as well as achieving synchronized progress in new industrialization, application of IT technology, urbanization, agricultural modernization and ecological conservation.

In the next five years, Hunan will energetically encourage scientific and technological innovation, with the aim to turn itself into a hub of innovation in central China.

As part of the ambitious strategy, the Changsha-Zhuzhou-Xiangtan National Independent Innovation Demonstration Zone will be established. As a result, by 2020, the value added of hi-tech industries in the zone will make up 40 percent of its gross regional product, and 10 innovative industrial clusters each with an annual output value of 100 billion yuan ($15.31 billion) will be put in place. By 2020, all industrial enterprises above the designated size will have their own technological innovation units, and more than 90 percent of public scientific and technological innovation platforms will be connected. In addition to the core platform of the Changsha-Zhuzhou-Xiangtan National Independent Innovation Demonstration Zone, a program to develop an industrial technological innovation chain will be carried out in 10 sectors such as high-end equipment manufacturing, new material and culture, and five major scientific and technological projects will be launched.

Public service platforms will be developed to facilitate mass entrepreneurship and innovation, including more than 150 provincial-level makerspaces, the same number of public service platforms for small, medium- and micro-sized enterprises, as well as 100 provincial-level business incubator bases. Incentives will also be provided to outsourcing, entrepreneurial support and crowdfunding.

In addition, a number of talent programs will be implemented. By 2020, Hunan is expected to build a talent pool of 7.7 million people.

During the 13th Five-Year Plan period, Hunan will reinforce reform in an all-round way, protect the legal rights and interests of all market players, and form a set of systems and mechanisms that are conducive to innovative development and economic transformation and upgrading.

Efforts will be made to establish a modern property rights system, promote the development of enterprises with different types of ownership, improve the market and fiscal systems, as well as accelerate reform of the administrative system.

During the 13th Five-Year Plan period, Hunan will be committed to promoting supply-side structural reform while appropriately expanding gross demand. The authorities will impose less taxes and charges on enterprises and make efforts to lower their financing costs, in order to contribute to the real economy. Efforts will also be made to stoke housing and auto consumption, as well as support boost consumer spending on services, information, fashion as well as environmental protection.

Moreover, breakthroughs will be made in optimizing investment structure, diversifying destinations of private investment, innovating models for private investment and improving services for private investors.

By 2020, no less than five leading enterprises each with an annual output value exceeding 50 billion yuan ($7.65 billion), 15 enterprises each with an annual output value exceeding 10 billion yuan ($1.53 billion), and 30 enterprises each with an annual output value exceeding 5 billion yuan ($765 million) will emerge in the private sector.

Ducks make up a graphic pattern in the Miluo River wetland on July 27, 2015 (FENG HONGWEI)

Opening up

During the 13th Five-Year Plan period, Hunan will attach equal importance to opening its market to investors from both the other parts of the country and foreign countries and regions. It will also expand both imports and exports, as well as intensify efforts to attract foreign capital, technologies and professionals. Moreover, it will encourage local enterprises to broaden overseas presence in line with a strategy to build Hunan into a leading opening-up economy in central China.

In line with the building of the China-proposed Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-Century Maritime Silk Road, Hunan will expand its overland and air links with the outside world, in addition to promoting cross-border e-commerce and other fledgling formats of foreign trade as well as fueling the transformation and upgrading of processing trade. It will strengthen bilateral and multilateral policy coordination with trading partners in Southeast Asia, Europe, Central Asia, Africa and Latin America. The province plans to welcome 20 of the Fortune Global 500 enterprises and attract foreign investment of more than $50 billion by 2020.

Hunan will actively participate in the building of the Yangtze River Economic Belt, with the focus on reinforcing the important status of the Changsha-Zhuzhou-Xiangtan city agglomeration in the city cluster along the middle reaches of the Yangtze. Other priorities on its agenda also include an opening-up and cooperation pilot zone with neighboring Jiangxi Province, cross-provincial cooperation in the pan-Pearl River Delta region, a cooperation demonstration zone with Guizhou Province in southwest China, as well as industrial, scientific and technological cooperation with other provinces in central China. In addition, to intensify integrated development and facilitate industrial transfer, Hunan will fix eyes on the Pearl River Delta, the Yangtze River Delta, the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Region, as well as Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, energetically draw investment revolving local industrial chains, introduce a bunch of large enterprises and projects, and attract multinationals to locate their regional headquarters, operation centers and research and development centers in the province.

In order to optimize its environment for opening up, Hunan is lobbying for the approval to carry out a national off-shore financial pilot scheme. It also plans to build a financial settlement center in central China, promote the establishment of a province-wide e-port platform, speed up the formation of a cross-border e-commerce service platform in the provincial capital Changsha and apply for the approval of the China (Changsha) Cross-Border E-commerce Comprehensive Pilot Area.

Copyedited by Mara Lee Durrell

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