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How does Shenzhen overtake Hong Kong as China’s most competitive city? – part 2


Why Shenzhen? "It's easy to find hardware factories to turn your idea into products, no matter if you only have just a few thousand yuan or just order one unit," Ma told the South China Morning Post. Start-ups like Ma's need the cheap manufacturing space Shenzhen offers as well as its existing supply chains.


Yet Shenzhen has much more than an industrial infrastructure. There are in the northern part of that city rusting industrial buildings where young businesses have replaced old-line manufacturers, where thousands of John Mas have set up shop to become Frank Wangs.


No wonder Shenzhen now leads China as its most competitive city. Li Chao, who worked on the CASS survey, said Shenzhen’s “product output per land area is the highest in the country.”


Of course, Shenzhen’s productivity is helped by hosting Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. That’s better known as Foxconn Technology Group, the world’s largest contract manufacturer of electronics and the maker of products for Apple AAPL -0.42% and other consumer products companies. Foxconn’s Longhua facility, by some measures the largest factory on the planet, is just down the road from dingy buildings hosting some of the world’s smallest—and soon to be recognized as most innovative—companies.

当然,深圳的生产力因为鸿海精密工业股份有限公司(著名的富智康,更名前叫富士康)落户于此而得益。该公司是世界上最大的电子产品外包制造商,为苹果及其 他其他消费产品公司制造产品。富智康的龙华厂按照某些指标衡量堪称全球最大的工厂,一街之隔的不远处,就是那些容纳着全世界最小公司(很快会被公认为最具 创新力的公司)的破旧工业厂房。

Shenzhen’s role as incubator to tomorrow’s businesses is presumably safe as long as Beijing does not meddle too much. The Pearl River Delta has just been recognized by the World Bank as the world’s largest metropolitan area by size and population, passing Tokyo.

只要中国政府不干涉太多,深圳作为未来企业培育温室的地位可能是安全的。珠江三角洲刚刚被世界银行(World Bank)确认为无论在人口还是面积上都已经超过东京的世界最大都市圈。

Beijing, however, is thinking bigger still. There have been central government plans to regionalize the 11 Pearl River Delta cities into a metropolis of about 50 million people. Planning should coordinate transportation infrastructure—helping competitiveness—but could also bring adverse side effects, the downside of central technocrats trying to do too much.


It is no coincidence that four of China’s most competitive cities are in the Delta. Two of them, Shenzhen and Guangzhou, are in freewheeling Guangdong province, far from the seat of Communist Party power in Beijing. The two others, Hong Kong and Macau, are adjacent to Guangdong. With an anything-goes mentality in the Delta, almost anything can happen there. After all, a nine-year-old Shenzhen start-up has just captured most of a global market.

中国四座最具竞争力的城市都在珠江三角洲,这并不是巧合。其中的两个城市——深圳和广州,位于高度自由的广东省,远离北京的权力中心。另外两个——香港和 澳门,则与广东毗邻。由于珠江三角洲存在一种“随心所欲”的心态,几乎任何事情都可以在那里发生。别忘了,深圳一家创建才九年的公司抢占了一个全球市场的 大部分份额。

There are undoubtedly more DJIs in those hulking buildings in Shenzhen. We just don’t know their names yet.



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