CE: Cooperation zone a ‘major move’ to promote SAR in development plan

Chief Executve (CE) Ho Iat Seng announced on Friday that the SAR government would advance work as a part of building the Guangdong-Macau in-depth cooperation zone in Hengqin in a pragmatic and orderly manner.
The general plan for building the Guangdong-Macau in-depth cooperation zone in Hengqin, issued by the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council, was made public last Sunday.
Ho said, at a press conference, that building the cooperation zone is of great significance to: promote Macau’s appropriate economic diversification; facilitate Macau residents’ living and working in Hengqin; push for the quality development of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area; and enrich the practice of “One country, two systems.”
“It is also a major move to promote Macau’s better integration into overall national development,” he told reporters.
Ho said that the Macau SAR government has been in close contact with the Guangdong provincial government and the Zhuhai municipal government, seeking quality development of the cooperation zone.
In talks, the governments reached agreement on the institutional structure in the cooperation zone, Ho said. He added that the SAR government has appointed young, capable civil servants to the cooperation zone’s executive body.
Ho said that the Macau SAR government will thoroughly study the plan and make arrangements for its future work accordingly.
The SAR government will pool resources together to help various sectors in Macau capitalize on the favorable policies made by the central authorities.
He also promised that the SAR government will create an environment in Hengqin similar to Macau that will be agreeable for either dwelling or working — as is required by the plan — so as to expand quality living space for Macau’s residents.
With the plan, the SAR government will also seek innovation to improve the mechanism of extensive consultation, joint construction, joint management and shared benefits between Guangdong and Macau. This will be done in order to promote new practices and trials for the principle of “One country, two systems,” added Ho.
The CE said priority will be given to the developing industries of health, modern finance, hi-tech, exhibitions and trade, and culture and sports in the Hengqin cooperation zone. This will start with the research and development of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).
The central authorities’ upgraded preferential policies on fiscal taxation will help attract high-quality businesses to Hengqin and invigorate the market, he said.
“In the future, we will continue to promote mutual access of infrastructure in the cooperation zone to gradually link it with Macau’s public service and social security systems, covering education, medical care and social services,” Ho said. MDT/Xinhua

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