The 37 deals worth 27 billion yuan ($4 billion) signed on Friday will bring industrial development and urban construction projects to Lin-gang Special Area of the China (Shanghai) Free Trade Zone, experts said.
In an online event, 37 companies signed cooperation agreements with the administrative committee of Lin-gang Special Area.
The agreements show domestic and international leaders' unshaken confidence in the potential of Lingang Special Area, observers said. They will bring another 5.8 billion yuan worth of projects in services trade to Lin-gang.
Of the 37 projects signed on Friday, nine are foreign-invested. Specifically, the investment will cover industries like integrated circuits (ICs), biomedicine, artificial intelligence (AI), smart new energy vehicles (NEVs), digital economy, bonded research and development, shipping, logistics, cross-border finance and travel.
Chen Jinshan, director of the Lingang administrative committee, told participants during the online event that the latest COVID-19 outbreak in Shanghai has neither held up Lin-gang's development pace nor changed market entities' conviction in the area's potential to generate healthy returns on investment.
Mutual fund company HuaAn Funds, whose total assets under management or AUM are valued at over 650 billion yuan, will set up a Lin-gang branch with a registered capital of 150 million yuan.
Zhu Xuehua, the asset manager's chairman, said the new branch will not only advance Lin-gang's development with professional financial help, but also will consolidate Shanghai's role as an international financial center. To seek strategic growth, such a move in Lin-gang is crucial given the area's strong development momentum, he said.
According to the latest agreement, telecommunications giant China Unicom will set up an international data center in Lin-gang with an investment of 9 billion yuan. Apart from further improving the infrastructure efficiency in Lingang, China Unicom's fresh investment will strengthen cooperation with partners from other industries to facilitate the development of NEVs, high-end equipment, artificial intelligence and biomedicine in Lin-gang, said Shen Hongbo, the company's general manager in Shanghai.
The nine foreign-invested projects include a 2.1 billion-yuan high-end technology and manufacturing base that Isdera, a German independent automaker, plans to build in Lin-gang.
According to Stefan Peters, general manager of Isdera (Shanghai)Automotive Technology Co Ltd, the local unit of the German company, the Lin-gang base is scheduled to go operational in the first half of 2023. It will build a sports car supply chain to meet the demand of clients in Europe, the Middle East and other Asian markets.
As of May 20, all the 315 Lin-gang-based companies, whose annual sales revenue is at least 20 million yuan each, have resumed production. The cumulative imports and exports value registered at Lin-gang reached 57.1 billion yuan during the first four months of this year, up 36 percent year-on-year.