Smart cities development hub launched in China

The partners involved want to address the challenges faced by fast-growing cities across the country

China is recognised as a significant driver of smart cities growth
China is recognised as a significant driver of smart cities growth

Smart cities have been highlighted in China’s 12th and 13th five year plans

The hub will allow key players from industry and public sector to work together

Arup, HSBC and the China Centre for Urban Development have announced the creation of a UK-China smart cities development and investment hub.


The partners said the initiative will provide a platform for the private sector to work with Chinese government to develop holistic and scalable solutions to address the “challenges faced by fast-growing cities” across the country.


It is significant as smart cities have been highlighted in China’s 12th and 13th five year plans (FYP) as a “sector that should be strengthened and encouraged,” the partners added in a press statement.


According to a previous Arup study, the global market for smart cities could reach $408bn by 2020 and China has been recognised as a significant driver of this growth as some RMB500bn has been earmarked for smart cities in in the country during the 13th FYP period (2016-2020).


The investment hub will allow key players from industry and the public sector to work together to offer consultation, products and services on planning, financing and project management to support the development of smart cities in China.


“Tireless collaboration between national and municipal governments, and between the public and private sectors, is needed to address the challenges arising from rapidly growing cities and society’s requirements for low-carbon infrastructure. That is one reason why HSBC is supporting the UK-China Smart City,” said Douglas Flint, group chairman, HSBC.


“Development and investment hub, in conjunction with Arup and the China centre for urban development. This new initiative will enable municipal authorities and businesses in both the UK and China to work more closely together to develop smart cities which meet our economic, environmental and social objectives.”


"The special relationship between the UK and China provides a unique opportunity to address, in a very proactive and collaborative way, some of the challenges around smart cities,” added Volker Buscher, global digital business leader, Arup.


“The establishment of a ’hub’ to address issues around project scope and financing will help cities enormously in their efforts to address issues around traffic management, air quality, climate change, citizen engagement and economic development.”


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