The cities of Suzhou and Wuxi in Jiangsu province have reported outstanding industrial output figures for last year. Wuxi’s government said that the city’s total industrial output made by companies with an annual turnover of at least CNY20 million each was CNY2.1 trillion in 2021, a record high and up 19% year-on-year. Another record has been set in neighboring Suzhou, where industrial output topped CNY4 trillion in 2021, up 15% year-on-year, beating the CNY3.7 trillion record set by Shenzhen in 2020, twice the figure of Guangzhou and six times that of Xian. The combined turnover of Wuxi’s 16 thriving key industries – including internet of things (IoT), integrated circuits and high-end equipment – increased 21% year-on-year to reach CNY1.76 trillion. Information technology, equipment manufacturing, biomedicine and advanced materials accounted for CNY3.8 trillion of Suzhou’s total industrial output of CNY4 trillion last year.
Wuxi’s huge progress showed that industries are the foundation of high-quality economic growth, which is also in line with the central government’s emphasis on the development of the real economy, said Wu Yan, Director of the city’s Bureau of Industry and Information Technology. Shen Kaiyan, Dean of the Institute of Economics at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences, said the surge in Wuxi’s industrial output was especially encouraging at a time of industrial decline in some Chinese cities due to economic restructuring. Last year’s growth helped Wuxi become one of the leaders in the Yangtze River Delta region – along with Shanghai and Suzhou – in terms of industrial development, she said. Zhang Lixin, Chairman of Wuxi-based IC design company Chipown Micro-electronics, said that industry leaders should shoulder more responsibility by creating coordinated development and attracting the right talent to Wuxi so that a more market-based environment can be built there.
Meanwhile, Suzhou’s annual industrial growth rate reached 20.5% in the first half of 2021, compared with 15.2% in Shanghai and 4.8% in Shenzhen during that period. As of the end of 2021, Suzhou was home to 111,555 innovative high-tech companies recognized by the Ministry of Science and Technology. In a report released on December 24 by market research firm CCID Consulting, the city ranked first among all prefecture-level cities in China in terms of development of the digital economy. Cao Lubao, Party Secretary of Suzhou, said that innovation should serve as the engine of the city’s economic growth. More projects and companies should be attracted to the city to build more industrial clusters, he said, as reported by the China Daily.