At the time when the GDP trillion yuan city is about to expand to more than 20, many strong second-tier cities are marching toward the GDP 2 trillion yuan goal.
In 2019, my country has five cities with GDP exceeding the 2 trillion yuan mark, namely Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Chongqing. After these five cities, which other cities are also expected to enter this rank?
The data shows that in 2019, the GDP of 6 cities is between 1.4 trillion and 2 trillion yuan, namely Suzhou, Chengdu, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Tianjin and Nanjing. Among them, Suzhou and Chengdu are the closest to 2 trillion yuan.
Suzhou is expected to take the lead in crossing the line
It is not a city listed in a separate state plan or a sub-provincial city. As an ordinary prefecture-level city, Suzhou’s economic aggregate was second only to the four first-tier cities in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen for many years, ranking fifth in the country. Although it has declined in recent years, it still ranks sixth in the country, second only to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and Chongqing.
After the reform and opening up, the export-oriented industries in the southern Jiangsu area near Shanghai developed rapidly. Suzhou, which is close to Shanghai, through the division of labor and cooperation with Shanghai, achieved rapid industrial economic development and developed into the country’s largest city in industrial output. Several county-level cities under the jurisdiction of Suzhou, including Kunshan, Zhangjiagang and Changshu, have long been among the top 100 counties in China.
Among them, Kunshan’s GDP exceeded 400 billion yuan, surpassing provincial capitals such as Guiyang and Taiyuan.
Not only that, last year, Suzhou recognized 3,160 national high-tech enterprises, with a total of 7,052, second only to Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen, becoming the city with the largest number of high-tech enterprises in the second-tier cities. It can be seen that the spillover effect of accepting Shanghai is very significant.
In 2019, Suzhou achieved a regional GDP of 1923.58 billion yuan, an increase of 5.6% over the previous year at comparable prices, and it is not far from the 2 trillion yuan mark. However, affected by factors such as the epidemic, Suzhou achieved a GDP of 1,420.8 billion yuan in the first three quarters of this year, which is 579.2 billion yuan away from 2 trillion yuan. From the perspective of a single quarter, Suzhou achieved a GDP of 515.78 billion yuan in the third quarter, so it is still not easy to break through 2 trillion yuan this year.
However, Ding Changfa, an associate professor of economics at Xiamen University, analyzed to a reporter from China Business News that in the fourth quarter, foreign trade exports rebounded sharply. As a highly export-oriented city, Suzhou’s economic growth rate is expected to continue to rebound.
Of course, as a prefecture-level city with the largest economic aggregate, Suzhou’s future development also has many shortcomings. For example, from the perspective of urban spatial structure, although the total population of Suzhou’s urban area exceeds 10 million, the population of the central city is only 3.57 million, which is not a small distance from the megacities, and the development of modern service industry is not outstanding enough.
According to media analysis, Suzhou has always been hailed as “the strongest prefecture-level city”, which also implies a reality: Suzhou is “just a prefecture-level city.” Therefore, in the process of developing high-end producer services, when higher resource allocation rights are needed, Suzhou’s urban energy level is an obvious “ceiling.”
Ding Changfa analyzed that Suzhou really needs to make up for its shortcomings in the modern service industry. Some service industries can develop, but some service industries are definitely not as good as Shanghai and Nanjing. Shanghai is fully developed in a dislocation.
He said that Suzhou also has many advantages of its own. In the future, it will focus on the transformation and upgrading of manufacturing industry, and make efforts in manufacturing R&D to develop industries and fields with its own comparative advantages.