Introduction of Hengqin Area
Hengqin is a 106.46-square-kilometer coastal island tucked into the southern corner of the city of Zhuhai in Guangdong province. Because it is adjacent to Macao, which is no more than 200 meters away, the island has been selected as a New Area in order to enhance economic ties with Hong Kong and Macao.
On Aug. 14, 2009, the State Council approved a proposed plan on the overall development of Hengqin and Hengqin will enjoy more preferential policies than the previous economic zones in Guangdong province.
The Hengqin New Area was officially established on Dec. 16, 2009. In the ensuing years, it has enjoyed great economic expansion with the support of preferential policies including high tax rebates and 24-hour customs clearance.
A bridge connecting Hengqin with Macao and Hong Kong is scheduled to open in 2016. When it is completed, it will only take about five minutes to drive to Macao and 40 minutes to drive to Hong Kong.
As improved public facilities have allowed Hengqin to expand its ties with Hong Kong and Macao, the coastal city has resolved to attract investment by developing a variety of sectors as its pillar industries: finance, business services, tourism, culture, traditional Chinese medicine, research and development centers, education bases and high tech industry.
The coastal city is now home to a satellite campus of the University of Macau and several state-owned banks, including the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China and Bank of China.