Shanghai FTZ adds land to pilot new functions

Global Times| Updated: Aug 20, 2019 L M S

Shanghai's pilot free trade zone on Aug 20 added a new area, occupying 119.5 square kilometers, in Lin-gang in the southeastern part of the city.

Lin-gang New Area occupies a pivotal geographic position, which has the advantage of being easily accessed by air, sea and rail due to its location near Shanghai Pudong International Airport, the Yangshan Port and a planned high-speed railway route. Yangshan Port is the world's top container port.

The area is 75 kilometers from Shanghai's urban areas.

The area was inaugurated on Aug 20 on approval by the State Council, China's cabinet, which was made public last August. According to the State Council, Lin-gang is expected to become a globally competitive, influential free trade area with special functions by 2035.

The Shanghai municipality hopes to attract advanced industry, including integrated circuits, biopharmaceuticals, artificial intelligence, aeronautics and aerospace, to form industrial clusters in the area. Nearby transport hubs are expected to support trade and industrial development in the new area.

This is the second time that the Shanghai Free Trade Zone has expanded its domain, and the latest expansion has almost doubled its size.

US electric car maker Tesla's first overseas plant is also located in Lin-gang New Area and is set to begin production in 2020.

Analysts have said that the development of the new area could include an experiment in cross-border capital management to better compete for global trade resources and achieve the development of a free trade port, with the plan using the terminology "internationally acclaimed, most competitive free trade industrial park".

Globally, "free trade ports" refer to Singapore, Dubai and China's Hong Kong.

Leading manufacturing companies such as SAIC Motor, Shanghai Electric Group, Siemens and GE have already established themselves in the area.