PHBS students in this semester's Chinese Studies course recently got a wonderful opportunity to visit the Qianhai Exhibition Center in Shenzhen. An architectural marvel, the Qianhai Exhibition Center is a beautifully built interaction space interspersed with modern and conventional styles of construction. Built in 2010, Qianhai is located near the Pearl River Delta area with an aim to utilize its strategic position (advanced infrastructure) and provide a platform for innovation that benefits the country’s national strategy. The project’s main goal is to strengthen the ties between Hong Kong & Shenzhen (Gateway to China). Within six years, Qianhai has managed to develop a market-oriented government, reduce interest rates, conduct land reforms, and establish an anti-corruption bureau.
Built within the confines of a miniature township, the Qianhai Exhibition Center is well known for its interesting urban structure. The area has five main divisions: 1) Qianhai Guiwan Area, which is the finance & business centre, 2) Qianhai Liwan Area, the centre for comprehensive development, 3) Qianhai Mawan, Area, which comprises of the bonded port, modern logistics & integrated supply chain, 4) Shekou Business Area, the silicon valley of South China serving as a cultural and business hub and lastly, 5) Shekou Port area which includes the coastal town and maritime services. The Qianhai Exhibition Center is noted for its futuristic ambiance and spatial design.
Owing to its geographical location, Qianhai has now become an important hub of the 21st century (especially for China). It promotes a compact city with a water town system, landscape and industrial development, modern traffic systems, low carbon emission technology, sustainable energy, ecology, efficient public transport fulfilling all the needs of those living in the area. It offers a lot of benefits such as a pilot free trade zone (lower taxes, international laws and regulations), fully functional bonded port area, etc.
Another interesting feature of Qianhai is the E-hub. E-hub is a government-backed project under Qianhai authority focusing on fostering the startup ecosystem in China and it is spread over an area of 58,000 Sq. The campus consists of an entrepreneurial academy and innovation center, where the main focus is given to three important stages of innovation and entrepreneurship - seed, incubation and acceleration. The most prominent part of the E-Hub is the Houdai Incubator which provides free office spaces & 1-on-1 consulting services apart from operating an investment fund. Initiated by alumni and people from Tsinghua University, Silicon Valley and Hong Kong, its establishment has paved the way for an array of developmental activities.
The visit ended with an interaction with some of the executives of and the brain behind the exhibition centres. The students got an insider overview of the centre’s statistics. The Chinese government provided a support of 940 million USD, Shenzhen government funded 940 million RMB and currently 340 million of the funds have been invested in supporting firms, including 61 Fortune 500 companies. In terms of legal environment, Qianhai even has its own Shenzhen International Arbitration Court consisting of 870 arbitrators! The Qianhai Exhibition Centre has successfully managed to tap the Chinese government’s aim to establish deeper co-operation between Shenzhen, Hong Kong & Guangdong so as to further support China’s economic and technological development.
The visit was a truly enriching experience for the group and broadened their horizon about the multitude of business arenas that China has to offer.
Photo Credits: Methawee Tantrawenith , Jan Smejkal, Shubham Kulshrestha
Reported by Gayathri Jagannathan