However, Guangdong has a total of 21 cities, not just these 9. The other 12 cities are in less developed Eastern, Western and Northern regions. The 12 cities in eastern, western and northern regions are Shantou, Chaozhou, Jieyang, Shanwei, Zhanjiang, Maoming, Yangjiang, Shaoguan, Heyuan, Meizhou, Qingyuan and Yunfu. Due to various obstacles including its deficient infrastructure and weak industrial system, some of these cities used to have GDP per capita lower than the national average level.
A provincial policy has been implemented since 2013 on stimulating these regions' development. And now they are catching up.
According to statistics, since 2009 the regions' GDP growth rate surpassed that in Pearl River Delta region in 6 consecutive years. And in the first half of 2016, the economic performance in eastern, western and northern Guangdong continued to amaze the province. Shantou, a city in eastern Guangdong, even handed its splendid transcript with its rapid GDP growth rate of 8.2%, only 0.4% lower than that in the top city Shenzhen.
Eastern, Western and Northern Guangdong undertaking industrial shift from PRD region
Some experts owed rapid development in eastern, western and northern Guangdong to the industries moving in from the Pearl River Delta region.
Cities in eastern, western and northern region have been encouraged to seize the opportunity of industrial transformation and upgrading in the province and focus on co-constructing industrial parks and main projects with Pearl River Delta.
According to a report from local media, parts of Guangdong's auto industry have been shifting from Guangzhou to Qingyuan, a northern city in Guangdong, and Guangzhou-Qingyuan Industrial Park is one main place to undertake auto industry. Statistics in this May showed that among the 67 projects in this park 74% were from Guangzhou.
Guangzhou Fuqiang Auto Parts Company is the first company moving here from PRD region. He Zijie, deputy general manager of the company, introduced that they had reduced 50% of its cost of production since it moved from Huadu District of Guangzhou.
"If we control the amount of staff under 300, with the same condition we can double or triple producing capacity. This could not be realized in Guangzhou." Thus this company has planned to move the whole company to Qingyuan within 3 years.
Each of the 12 cities established at least one co-constructing industrial park in the past three years. According to Nanfang Daily, in 2020 each industrial park will have an output of over 50 billion Yuan, and becomes new economic growth gear of their cities.
Guangdong government will help about 1600 projects shifting from the PRD region to eastern, western and northern areas till 2018, forming an industrial system with reasonable layout and interactive development in Guangdong.
PRD cities' assistance to their counterparts in developing regions
On September 1st, the kindergarten attached to Chetianbo Primary School in Hezhi Village of Maoming officially opened. It helped over 1000 pre-school children who had faced difficulties in finding a kindergarten in nearby area. Among them there were 7 children from poor families.
Maoming is a city in western Guangdong, and this is one project by the government of Baijiao Town of Doumen District in Zhuhai with the investment of 150,000 Yuan under the policy of 9 PRD cities providing assistance to counterparts in eastern, western and northern areas.
For those regions, direct help from outside is effective and efficient. Thus Guangdong government has carried out this policy in recent years. Besides the economic part, projects on assistance to counterparts between cities in PRD region and developing areas has contained more comprehensive fields including education and poverty elimination.
According to Nanfang Daily, in recent 3 years 2062 projects have been brought in to developing regions in Guangdong, with the total investment of 420.4 billion Yuan. At the same time, 1119 projects have been completed with the investment of 97.6 billion Yuan.
Since 2013 over 1200 companies have entered to these regions under this policy, with the intended investment of over 290 billion Yuan, among which about 40% are from PRD region.
More assistance to counterparts will continue in the following years according to a recent conference held by the provincial government tailoring to boost assistance to counterparts between cities in PRD region and developing areas. At the conference 28 projects on assistance to counterparts have been signed with the investment of over 28.7 billion Yuan. The auto manufacturing, equipments manufacturing and the food industry are included.