ECONOMY | Staff Reporter, Hong Kong

Economic growth slows to 2.7% as Shenzen claims dominance over Greater Bay Area

The former fishing village surpassed Hong Kong after its GDP hit $2.72t in 2017.

Move over Hong Kong – Shenzen can now claim dominance over the Greater Bay Area after Hong Kong registered consistently dismal economic growth rates of 2.7% over the past decade whilst the former fishing village's booming IT sector is charting its steady way up, according to Colliers International. 

To put this into context, ten years ago, Hong Kong’s GDP at USD208b was more than double of Shenzen’s at USD91b in 2007 but since the Great Financial Crisis, the gap between the two has been steadily narrowing as the latter's GDP hit $2.72t (2.2t yuan) in 2017. 

This is partially because Hong Kong failed to evolve and remained heavily reliant on four traditional service industries like finance, professional services, tourism and trade, Colliers notes, which kept the status quo but did not record any significant economic gains. 

On the other hand, Shenzen transformed itself into a leading innovation and technoligcal hub as tech-relevant industries accounts for almost half (40.9%) of the city’s total GDP.

The Tier-1 Chinese city houses technological giants like Huawei, Tencent, Xiaomi and ZTE. 

Hong Kong also lost to Shenzen in terms of budget allocated for R&D expenses as Shenzen has made it a point to invest more than 4% of its GDP annually on research and development which exceeds even Singapore’s R&D allocation.

Photo from Daniel Case Own Work CC BY-SA 3.0

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