Focus on Xiongan: How will it Perform its Non-Capital Functions?

By Sooyu Zheng

The lotus flowers are in full boom across Baiyangdian wetland, located in Xiongan New Area. The tourists are flocking there in large numbers. China announced on April 1 that it would establish the Xiongan New Area in Hebei Province, spanning three counties: Xiongxian, Rongcheng, Anxin and their surrounding areas.

This will be another new area of national significance following the establishment of Shenzhen Special Economic Zone and Shanghai Pudong New Area.

The Xiongan New Area theme of “world vision, international standards, Chinese characteristics and high goals” is particularly apt. It represents a move to adjust China’s economic structure and spatial configuration, and a strategy crucial for the millennium to come. Chinese President Xi Jinping has called for Xiongan New Area to be “a demonstration area for innovative development”.

The Xiongan New Area will pool the non-capital functions of Beijing, and by curbing the capital’s population growth, it will help to address the severe “urban ills” of traffic congestion and air pollution in Beijing. It will be a new growth pole for the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei (BTH) Region and help slow-growth areas in Hebei province to develop.

In the 100 days since the initiative was announced, what has happened in the Xiongan New Area?