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Wednesday, September 21, 2016, 23:32

Shandong offers 103 projects to HK investors under B&R

By Lin Wenjie
Shandong offers 103 projects to HK investors under B&R
A delegate of Shandong province government (left) shakes hands with a Hong Kong Trade Development Council representative after the signing ceremony of the 2016 Shandong-Hong Kong Economic and Trade Cooperation Memorandum in Wan Chai on Sept 21 . (Roy Liu / China Daily )

Shandong — a major coastal province on the eastern Chinese mainland — is offering 103 projects in various sectors to woo investments from Hong Kong’s private sector.

As the third-largest provincial economy on the mainland, Shandong is actively exploring diversification of investment sources in fields like finance, logistics, healthcare and urban infrastructure.

Vice-Governor Xia Geng on Wednesday urged Hong Kong investors to seize the opportunities stemming from the nation’s 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) and the Belt and Road (B&R) Initiative.

“According to the 13th Five-Year Plan, Shandong will construct massive infrastructure projects, including airports, high-speed rails and telecommunication systems, with investment opportunities exceeding 1.8 trillion yuan (US$270 billion),” he said at the Hong Kong launch of “2016 Shandong Week” — an annual investment fair to lure Hong Kong investors to the province.

Xia said the provincial government has launched 375 public-private partnership projects with total investments of more than 600 billion yuan, which provide financing opportunities for Hong Kong companies.

Shandong is actively investing in the B&R economies, with more than 1,404 companies from the province having set up businesses along the route. “Shandong and Hong Kong can jointly explore more opportunities in the initiative,” he said.

In the first eight months of this year, Shandong had clinched US$6.55-billion worth of new contracts in the B&R economies, representing a 53.7-percent increase from a year ago, Ministry of Commerce data showed.

“Shandong is a major transportation center with geographical advantages. The province is located at the intersection of the north-south and east-west trading routes, as well as the crossing point of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st-century Maritime Silk Road,” said Margaret Fong Shun-man, executive director of the Hong Kong Trade Development Council.

She said Hong Kong companies with their rich financing experience can act as good partners or super-connectors in doing business with Shandong. “I hope that five years later, at the end of the 13th Five-Year Plan, we will see Shandong with a brand new look.”

Fong said Shandong’s strong growth momentum would be a big draw for Hong Kong investors. Last year, Shandong’s GDP climbed 8 percent to 6.3 trillion yuan.

The SAR has been Shandong’s largest source of foreign direct investment (FDI). By the end of July this year, about 17,960 Hong Kong-funded projects had poured $72.4 billion into the province. In the first seven months of 2016, FDI from Hong Kong to Shandong reached US$5.22 billion, registering a year-on-year growth of 13.1 percent, government data showed.

By the end of June this year, 99 firms from Shandong had been listed on overseas stock exchanges, with 46 firms currently listed in Hong Kong. The SAR listings raised a total of 88.9 billion yuan, representing 85.9 percent of funds raised from overseas floatations by Shandong-based companies.

cherrylin@china dailyhk.com

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