THE full text of the Framework Agreement on Deepening Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Cooperation in the Development of the Bay Area was released by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) on Monday.
The agreement was signed by the NDRC and the governments of Guangdong, Hong Kong and Macao, in Hong Kong on Saturday during President Xi Jinping's visit for the celebration of the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong's return to the motherland.
The agreement provides that the objective of the cooperation is to implement the principle of "one country, two systems" fully and accurately, improve and innovate the cooperation mechanism, establish a mutually complementary cooperation relationship, and jointly move forward with the development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.
It also lays out the goals, which include reinforcing Guangdong's roles as the nation's pilot zone for reform and opening up and as a main propeller of economic growth; developing its technology and industrial innovation centers and its advanced manufacturing and modern service industries base; as well as consolidating and enhancing Hong Kong's status as an international financial, transportation and trade center; strengthening its status as a global offshore renminbi business hub and an international asset management center; promoting the development of Hong Kong's professional services and innovation and technology industries; establishing a center for international legal and dispute resolution services for the Asia-Pacific Region; and accelerating Macao's development as a global tourism and leisure center; establishing an economic and trade cooperation platform between China and Portuguese-speaking countries; establishing an exchange and cooperation base with Chinese culture as its base that focuses on the co-existence of different cultures and fostering the appropriately diversified and sustainable development of the Macao economy.
The Greater Bay Area is striving to become a dynamic economic region, a high-quality area ideal for living, working and traveling, a showcase for in-depth cooperation between the mainland, Hong Kong and Macao, and a first-class bay area city cluster, according to the agreement.
In addition, the agreement establishes the key cooperation areas in the development of the Greater Bay Area, including promoting infrastructure connectivity; enhancing the level of market integration; building a global technology and innovation hub; building a system of modern industries through coordinated development; building a quality living circle to provide an ideal place for living, working and traveling; cultivating new strengths in international cooperation; and supporting the establishment of major cooperation platforms.
The agreement urged the development of the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link and major Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao cooperation platforms in Qianhai of Shenzhen, Nansha of Guangzhou and Hengqin of Zhuhai, and the establishment of cooperation platforms, including the Hong Kong-Shenzhen Innovation and Technology Park.
The four signatories agree to improve the coordination mechanism and convene annual consultation meetings to coordinate and resolve major problems and issues of cooperation arising from the development of the Bay Area. The four parties will also put forward annual work plans for moving forward the development of the Bay Area, and make a concerted effort in their implementation once a consensus has been reached amongst the four parties and relevant mainland authorities.
Premier Li Keqiang's government work report delivered to the opening session of the National People's Congress (NPC) in Beijing on March 5 mentioned the central government's plan to develop a "city cluster in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area."The Greater Bay Area-covering less than 1 percent of the country's land area and home to less than 5 percent of the population-includes Hong Kong, Macao and nine cities in Guangdong province, namely Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Dongguan, Huizhou, Zhongshan, Foshan, Zhaoqing and Jiangmen.