Government leaders and representatives attend the opening ceremony of the eighth Pan-Pearl River Delta Regional Cooperation and Development Forum in Haikou on Nov 29. Photos by Huang Yiming / China Daily 
Hainan has reaped great benefits from its participation in the Pan-Pearl River Delta Regional Cooperation and Development Forum, said Li Guoliang, vice-governor of Hainan, China’s southernmost province.
From 2003 to 2011, Hainan used it to attract 200 investments with a combined value in excess of 100 billion yuan ($16 billion), Li said.
This year, the forum, which closed on Dec 2, helped Hainan attract investments totaling 77.4 billion through its online platform for 14 projects, including the Boao exhibition center and the Wenchang space plaza.
The forum, held in the provincial capital Haikou, has also helped the island develop closer relations with Hong Kong and Macao, both members of the regional cooperation forum. Its ties with Hong Kong have become especially strong through the event.
Hainan is now home to more than 6,000 Hong Kong-funded enterprises and its exports to Hong Kong accounts for one-third of its total, Li said.
The Hainan government is also promoting better relations with other member provinces.
Since 2004, it has signed framework agreements with 25 departments in Guangdong, Fujian, Guizhou and Jiangxi provinces that cover agriculture, industry, transportation, tourism, energy, education, medical care and finance.
These agreements have helped boost Hainan’s development, such as the construction of its transportation network, Li said.
The provincial capital Haikou now has expressways to Guangzhou in Guangdong province and Nanning in Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region and direct trains to Chengdu in Sichuan province and Changsha in Hunan province.
A project to build a bridge over the Qiongzhou Strait to connect Hainan and Guangzhou has also been listed in China’s 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-15). Li said construction on the project is expected to begin in the next Five-Year Plan period.
In the years to come, the government of Hainan is expected to deepen cooperation with its partners in such sectors as agriculture.
Li said they will first work together to promote the development of Hainan’s breeding base and then seek to further create channels for shipping out the vegetables Hainan produces in winter.
SOURCE: China Daily

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