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Chengdu to make most of boost from forum

By ZHENG YANGPENG in Chengdu  (China Daily)

10:04, June 06, 2013

Hosting global Fortune event has drawn the world's attention to city

Chengdu will strive to make the best of the "Fortune Forum" effect, enhance the international level of the city and make it a growth hub for western China, Huang Xinchu, Party chief of Chengdu, told China Daily.

"Our vision is to integrate the city with the world and let the world know Chengdu. We'll try our best to facilitate the forum's ‘Fortune effect' and ‘amplifying effect', and lift the international level of the city to a new high," he said a day before the 2013 Fortune Global Forum opens in the southwestern metropolis.

The forum will convene more than 600 business and political leaders from around the world, the highest number in its history. It's also the first time that a city in western China is hosting the event.

Economic growth in China's western regions has outperformed that of China's eastern regions for five consecutive years, and the region is playing an increasingly important role in the nation's modernization drive. This phenomenon has drawn enormous interest from the world, Huang said.

Against this backdrop, he said that hosting the forum is a "landmark event" in Chengdu's 30 years of reform and opening-up efforts, and will surely affect the trajectory of Chengdu's development, changing the city's strategic role in China, and even in the world.

Last year, Chengdu's GDP reached 813.89 billion yuan ($132.74 billion), making the inland city the third-largest economy among China's 15 sub-provincial level cities.

In 2012, the city's fiscal revenue hit 78.1 billion yuan, 2.7 times higher than in 2007, while its fixed-asset investment reached 589 billion yuan, an increase of 2.5 times compared with 2007.

The per capita disposable income of Chengdu's urban residents rose 13.6 percent to 27,194 yuan a year, 1.8 times that of 2007, while the per capita disposable income of its rural residents reached 11,301 yuan, two times that of five years ago.

The city's total trade volume with foreign countries reached $47.54 billion in 2012, up 25.5 percent year-on-year.

Last month, the new leadership of Sichuan's provincial Party committee, formed after the 18th Party Congress, drew up the blueprint for the province's growth strategy.

The strategy highlighted "scientific" and "accelerated" growth. Sichuan will strive to make the transition from an "economically large province" to an "economically strong province", and from a "generally well-off society" to an "all-round well-off society".

The province also promised to implement strategies for "multi-polar development", "interaction between new industrialization and new urbanization", and "coordination between urban and rural development" and "innovation-driven growth", according to the blueprint.

Huang said Chengdu will adhere to these strategies for its future development.

Huang said that Chengdu is in the middle of an "acceleration phase" of the new industrialization and new urbanization drive, and is at a critical period of modernization and internationalization.

Exciting opportunities for the city's development include a new round of the Go West campaign for the Chengdu-Chongqing metropolitan area approved by the State Council and the construction of the Tianfu New Zone.

"We're determined to improve the quality of the city's economy and upgrade the city's layout, and make Chengdu the core growth pole of China's west," Huang said.

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