Fueled by new energy, east China city makes headway in economic growth

(Xinhua) 14:11, January 30, 2024

NANJING, Jan. 30 (Xinhua) -- Dubbed as a capital of new energy, Changzhou City, east China's Jiangsu Province, reported a regional gross domestic product (GDP) of 1.01 trillion yuan (about 140.8 billion U.S. dollars) in 2023, up 6.8 percent year on year, the local statistics department said Tuesday.

With a population of around five million, Changzhou has become the least populated Chinese city with a regional GDP of over one trillion yuan, joining Suzhou, Nanjing, Wuxi, and Nantong as the fifth city in Jiangsu Province to achieve this milestone.

As a manufacturing hub in the Yangtze River Delta, the city has magnetized a thriving cluster of top-notch battery and new energy vehicle (NEV) makers, infusing robust momentum into its economic growth.

The output value of the new energy industry in the city reached about 768 billion yuan last year, and the city aims to expand the output value to over one trillion yuan by 2025, according to Chen Jinhu, Party chief of Changzhou. "The new energy industry is a winning formula for Changzhou's development."

Data show that the industrial chain integrity of power batteries in Changzhou has reached 97 percent, ranking first in China, and the output accounts for 20 percent of the country's production capacity.

The city also contributes to 10 percent of Chinese-made photovoltaic cells and modules. In 2023, it produced more than 700,000 NEVs, accounting for 70 percent of those made in Jiangsu.

"Changzhou's new energy industry cluster is very developed and highly concentrated, so it fosters strong innovation capacity and great efficiency in production," said Zhang Yaojun, a professor from Renmin University of China.

Plenty of foreign-funded companies in new energy have also settled in Changzhou and benefited from the local industrial chain.

"We choose Changzhou because we need a place where we can get to scale very quickly, and Changzhou offers a unique combination of supply chain infrastructure," said Jorg Heinemann, CEO of America's EnerVenue, a storage battery supplier. "We want to be a large part of Changzhou's new energy vision and scale here and grow very big in this location."

And the progress of Changzhou is the epitome of how China is continuously moving toward the green transition. The city representatives were invited to a side event at the China Pavilion of the COP28 climate change conference last year.

"For Changzhou, new energy is not just an industry, and the ultimate participants and beneficiaries of promoting green and low-carbon development are the people," said Wang Xiaodong, a local official, at the event.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


Related Stories