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Qingdao is situated at the southern tip of the Shandong Peninsula, by the Yellow Sea and on the west shore of the Pacific Ocean, across the sea on its east are the Republic of Korea and Japan. Qingdao is a sub-provincial city, it has a permanent resident population of more than 10 million.

In January 2016, the State Council approved Qingdao Overall Urban Plan (2011-2020), which raised Qingdao’s position from an economic center on the east coast of China to an important coastal center of China. By 2020, Qingdao will have a population of 12 million, with an urban construction area of 660 square kilometers and urbanization ratio of over 78%. Urban space outlay structure, industrial development direction and comprehensive transport system will have been further optimized, which will enable the city to better undertake national strategies.

A Resort Destination

A hilly seaside city, Qingdao boasts picturesque landscapes featuring red tiles, green trees, blue sea and azure sky. The buildings are of unique architectural styles, and the Badaguan architectural complex is hailed as the most beautiful urban district in China. Acclaimed “No.1 Famous Mountain on the Sea” and “Millennium-old Sacred Mountain for Taoism,” Mount Lao is noted as a national tourist attraction. A blend of both mountains and sea, Qingdao is named by the United Nations among the world’s most livable cities, and Qingdao’s bays are lauded as some of the most beautiful bays in the world. Qingdao is also home to China Cruise Tourism Development Experimental Zone. The Qingdao Cruise Homeport has three berths, where ultra-large cruise liners enter and exit. Qingdao receives 100 million domestic and international tourists each year.

A Key Coastal Center of China

Qingdao is one of China’s first coastal cities opening up to the outside world. It has established trade ties with over 216 countries and regions across the world, sister-city relationships (with 25 cities) or friendly cooperative relationships (with 48 cities), and international economic partnerships with 98 cities (provinces/states) or business organizations around the world. There are consulates general of Japan, the Republic of Korea and Thailand in the city. Over 2,100 foreign government organizations and enterprises have representative offices here, and 156 Fortune 500 companies have invested in 294 local projects.

A City of Marine Science and Technology

Qingdao is a city renowned for marine science and technology. It is home to one fifth of China’s marine research institutions, one third of the country’s high-end marine R&D platforms. It boasts the country’s sole center for marine technology transfer with 18 full-time Chinese academicians in the field of marine science. It owns such national innovation platforms as the Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology, Center for Ocean Mega-Science, CAS and the China National Deep Sea Center. Marine related industries contributed over a quarter of Qingdao’s GDP in 2018. The city plans to give full play to its advantages in marine industries by promoting high-quality development and exploring new driving forces.

A City of Brands in China

Qingdao is famed for being a “City of Brands” in China. A number of world-renowned Chinese enterprises, such as Haier, Hisense, Tsingtao Brewery, Doublestar, and CRRC Qingdao Sifang Co., Ltd., are based in Qingdao and their products, including refrigerators, TV sets, beer and high-speed trains, are sold across the globe. Haier and Tsingtao Brewery ranked the 3rd and 22nd among China 500 Most Valuable Brands 2018. Qingdao has produced in total over 55% of the highspeed trains in China.

A Wealth Management Center

A national pilot zone for comprehensive financial reform for wealth management has been set up, Qingdao is undertaking the mission of exploring a wealth management development path with Chinese characteristics. It will vigorously establish this by building a cluster of wealth management organizations, a market functional center, a product and service innovation center, an education research center and a high-end business center towards the goal of an international center for wealth management. Each year the city hosts China Wealth Forum, an international wealth management event, which has enhanced the brand influence of “Wealth Qingdao”.

A National Innovation Center

Qingdao is the country’s only city that functions as a national innovative city and at the same time undertakes technological innovation projects. The National Technology Innovation Center for High Speed Trains, approved in September 2016, has been listed in the 13th Five-Year Plan of China and a key project of Shandong Province in upgrading drivers of growth. This is the first national technological innovation center. Located in the core area of Qingdao Rail Transit Industry Demonstration Zone, with a planned area of six square kilometers, the center will focus on building “three platforms, two centers, and one network”.

China's Exhibitions and Conventions City

Qingdao is well-known for conventions and exhibitions in China. In recent years, by facilitating the development of high-end conventions and exhibitions, Qingdao has optimized related facilities and hosted a number of internationally influential events including Qingdao International Beer Festival, China Fisheries & Seafood Expo, China Wealth Forum, China International Consumer Electronics Expo, Qingdao World Exports Show & Purchase Fair, Qingdao International Sailing Week • Qingdao International Marine Festival, Qingdao Forum of the East Asia Marine Cooperation Platform. Every year will see some 80 events held here, including AEM Innovative Development and Cooperation Forum, 1st BFA Global Health Forum, Multinational Leaders Qingdao Summit, SCO International Investment and Trade Expo, which will quicken Qingdao’s pace of growing into an international convention & exhibition hub of Northeast Asia.


Qingdao Will Build an International and Innovative City and Continue to Invest in the Development Led by Scientific and Technological Innovation

According to "Qingdao Five-Year Plan for Building an International and Innovative City (2022-2026)", Qingdao will focus on the two dimensions of "internationalization" and "innovation", deeply dock with the global innovation chain, industrial chain and talent chain, and further enhance the function of scientific and technological innovation source.

In the future, Qingdao will strive to build a marine science city with global influence, an innovation city on intelligent manufacturing with international competitiveness, a national important city of future industries and a nationally renowned science and technology innovation corridor in the Bay Area.

Qingdao’s average annual growth of R&D investment in the whole society will be more than 10%, the intensity of R&D investment will reach more than 3.2%, there will be more than 10,000 national high-tech enterprises, the output value of high-tech industries will account for 65% of the industrial output value of enterprises above the designated scale, and the total number of talents will exceed 3 million by 2026.

With the support of science and technology, Qingdao has seized the opportunities of a new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation, laying a more solid foundation for building an international innovative city.

In the past decade, Qingdao's relevant indicators have experienced a significant boom: the number of high-tech enterprises has increased from 538 in 2012 to 5,554 in 2021, which is an increase of 9.3 times; the turnover of technology contracts has increased from 2.54 billion yuan to 32.01 billion yuan, which corresponds to an increase of 11.6 times; the output value of high-tech industries above designated scale has increased from 39.7% to 60.5%, which equals to an increase of 20.8 percentage points, and the R&D expenditure of the whole society has increased from 16.43 billion yuan in 2011 to 30.09 billion yuan in 2020.

Qingdao has frequently ranked among the "first tier" in the national and even global scientific and technological strength evaluation lists, stabilized its status as one of the top ten science and technology innovation cities in China, and provided better proof of Qingdao's "innovation" and "internationalization".

Guided by innovation, Qingdao deepens its innovation-driven development strategy, insists on placing innovation at the core of the overall situation of modernization, and its urban innovation level has steadily risen. Basic research is the top-level logic of the scientific system, which determines fundamentally "how high we jump" and "how far we run" regarding scientific and technological innovation. Qingdao has 29 universities, more than 30 research institutes or institutions of colleges and universities stationed in Qingdao, and 9 national key laboratories, providing a solid foundation for basic research.

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