Shenzhen and Zhongshan Joint Hands to Construct the First Cross-City Economic Cooperation Zone in the Pearl River Delta

A new model of integrated and interactive development between the east and west sides of the Pearl River Estuary has emerged. On June 28 2023, Shenzhen and Zhongshan announced that both cities will join hands to construct the first cross-city economic cooperation zone in the Pearl River Delta to explore a new path for the coordinated and integrated development of industries in the Greater Bay Area.

The economic cooperation zone will be located in Cuiheng New District in Zhongshan and Zhongshan Torch Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone, with a total area of 66 square kilometres. According to the plan, "one centre and three bases" will be built in the region, namely Cuiheng City New Center, Industrial Chain Cooperation Base, High-End Manufacturing Cooperation Base and Cultural and Scientific and Technological Cooperation Base.

"Fostering development synergy between the east and west banks of Pearl River" is an important task set out of the "Outline Development Plan for the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area". The Thirteenth Guangdong Provincial Party Congress made it clear that it is necessary to improve the level of integration, take the integrated development of the east and west sides of the Pearl River Estuary as a breakthrough, and deepen the integration of infrastructure, industrial development, and social governance.

The Shenzhen-Zhongshan Link under construction will be the most efficient link connecting the east and west banks of the Pearl River Estuary. With Shenzhen-Zhongshan Link, the travel time from Shenzhen to Zhongshan will be shortened from 2 hours to 30 minutes, making “Shenzhen and Zhongshan as the same city” a reality. The Committee for Comprehensively Deepening Reform of the CPC Guangdong Provincial Committee has approved Zhongshan to construct a province-level reform and innovation pilot zone for integrated and interactive development of the East and West sides of the Pearl River Estuary. Shenzhen and Zhongshan have also signed an agreement to focus on six areas including business environment, industry, transportation, innovation, and social governance, public services to promote integrated and interactive development.

To deepen the integrated development, the Bao'an Jiuwei International Headquarters Area in Shenzhen was unveiled together with the cooperation zone. The two regions will carry out joint investment promotion, create cooperation models such as "Shenzhen headquarters + Zhongshan base", "Shenzhen R&D + Zhongshan commercialization", "Key manufacturing process in Shenzhen + complementary services in Zhongshan", and jointly expand economic growth and achieve a win-win situation.

According to Qu Jian, vice president of the China Development Institute based in Shenzhen, Zhongshan and Shenzhen will give full play to their respective advantages and jointly build a cooperation area, forming a "complete industrial chain" from R&D and design to processing and manufacturing and to marketing services. This will help promote the joint upgrade of the manufacturing industries of the two places.

Lu Qirong, chairman of Xinshengshi Mechanical and Electrical Products (Zhongshan) Co., Ltd., has high expectations in the Shenzhen-Zhongshan Economic Cooperation Zone. His company has been carrying out R&D activities in Bao’an, Shenzhen, and manufacturing activities in Cuiheng New District of Zhongshan. The deepening of cooperation between Shenzhen and Zhongshan will help his company to realize the multiplier effect of "1+1>2".

"This is not only cooperation between the two cities, but also cross-metropolitan cooperation between the east and west sides of the Pearl River Estuary. This is a new way of cooperation in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area." Said Zhang Yansheng, chief researcher of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges. Zhang believes that the new model of win-win cooperation between Shenzhen and Zhongshan is an important and significant demonstration of the high-quality development in Guangdong Province.

This article has been translated into English.  If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the English version and the Chinese version, the Chinese version shall prevail. The full text of the measures, in Chinese, can be found at