If China’s economic rise has been fast, the Tianjin Binhai New Area’s has been faster. It was a mere idea in 2005 but now operates as a 2,000-square-kilometre business zone that has been both a driver and a test case for China’s transformation from a goods manufacturer to a provider of technology and services.
Located 150 kilometres from Beijing, TBNA boasts one of the world’s biggest ports, an international airport, new highways and high-speed train lines. The area is also sprinkled with rivers, lakes and luxury hotels.
As well as being a major manufacturing hub for petrochemicals, cars and heavy goods, the zone has become a magnet for R&D, logistics, high-tech and financial services companies. Many foreign companies have set up shop in the area, including Airbus, Motorola, Mitsubishi and Bombardier Business Aircraft.
Creativity is a key theme of the TBNA, with the zone quickly becoming an artistic hub and home to research laboratories for some of China’s most prestigious universities. Meanwhile, the zone’s Eco-city is devoted to resource conservation and has seen its population double
Tianjin Binhai International Airport
One of China’s fastest growing airports, with state-of-the-art terminals, the newest of which opened in 2014. Its metro station provides easy access to downtown Tianjin.
A joint development between China and Singapore, this 30-square-kilometre area provides an environmentally friendly space that promotes and seeks to attract creative, technological and artistic industries.
The newly created financial district is still being developed but already boasts the world’s biggest and deepest high-speed train station and a large underground shopping area. Its GDP is expected to quadruple in 2017.
National Animation Industry Park
Located in the Eco-city, this has become one of China’s main hubs for animators and film investors, housing cutting-edge equipment and a creative space to develop ideas.