Xiamen has placed fifth on a GDP density ranking created by China Business Network to assess and compare the economies across Chinese cities.
The Fujian province city boasts 200 million yuan of GDP per square kilometer and lags behind only Shenzhen, Shanghai, Dongguan, and Guangzhou on the list. Xiamen was the only city to achieve a high ranking outside of the nation’s two economic powerhouse regions, Yangtze River Delta and Pearl River Delta, which is a testament to the city’s unique attractions and continued development.
Xiamen’s long term growth has been forged by structural reform and policies promoting economic development. The local government has made technology-driven industrial transformation a top priority and has latched onto both Belt and Road Initiative and China’s free trade policies to tap into global markets.
In the past five years, Xiamen’s regional GDP grew by 9.2 percent annually and reached 373.7 billion yuan in 2016, according to local statistics bureau.
Simultaneous to this growth, the city’s tertiary industry continues to boom; the number of high-tech companies has reached 1,200 as of 2017; and financial services, tourism and MICE, shipping and logistics, and software and information technology each grew to be a 100- billion worth industry.
Xiamen is a small city in terms of land mass, with a land area of mere 1699 skm covering the Xiamen Island and nearby mainland areas. It adopted an intensive economic development strategy years ago due to this space limit.
Lu Shengrong, an economics professor at Xiamen University, envisions an acceleration of this innovation-driven economy in the coming years.
Xiamen sees the integration of the information sector into industry as a means of ensuring the city’s businesses remain at the cutting-edge of development through bolstering efficiency and cutting waste.
Xiamen has gained a head start in smart manufacturing and internet of things (IoT) – it is home to a large number of competitive companies specializing in automation, robotics, and narrowband IoT.