Shenzhen, a city of hope
Shenzhen is a young city. Its history began when Bao'an County in Guangdong Province changed its name to the City of Shenzhen in 1979. It was designated as a Special Economic Zone in China in August 1980. Over the past 40 years, from a fishing village to a modern city, it has grown into the tech hub of the country. Shenzhen's development is attributed to a series of smart policy-makings and has undergone several transformations. Inclusive and open, the city is attracting many hi-tech enterprises and talents.
1980s: An industrial city
During the 80s, construction was everywhere, with roads and buildings being built all over the city. Shenzhen had been built into an industrial city with so many factories and workshops.
In 1984, late Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping, "chief architect" of China's reform and opening up, visited Shenzhen for the first time and steered the development direction for the city. By 1985, 60 buildings of high rises with 18 storeys and above were constructed.
Li Xun, former President of the China Academy of Urban Planning & Design, joined the city's urban design and recalled what the city looked like in 1984. "I came to the city in the autumn of 1984 and there was no airport then. We first took 33-hour train to Guangzhou, then three-hour bus to Shenzhen. It had a population of only 30,000. There were vast forests of lichee and land of sweet potatoes. It was dark in the evening and it was far less developed compared with Hong Kong on the opposite side, which was illuminated with colorful lights at night."
1990s: High-end manufacturing city
The city had been transitioned to a high-end manufacturing city, particularly a major producer of mobile phones and chips in this decade. It was known for the Huaqiangbei Electronics Markets which sold genuine fakes and second-hand phones refurbished to look as good as new. In the spring of 1992, Deng Xiaoping visited Shenzhen again and guided its development.
New era: Hub of tech and talent
In the 21st century, Internet and software companies had mushroomed and Shenzhen has become a city for start-ups and entrepreneurship. Tech and telecom giants, such as Tencent, Huawei, and the drone-maker DJI, have been headquartered there. The city is open and inclusive to youth talent across China.
Vincent Li, an English reporter, left for Shenzhen in 2018, after quitting from a renowned media agency in Beijing. He joined a start-up technology company. He said, "It is a young city where the millennial manners are in full reign. Four out of 10 young people are starts-up. The business environment is pleasant as well."
The latest good news is that Shenzhen on August 17 became China's first city to realize full-scale 5G network deployment, an example of a smart city in the country.
Being a key hub in the global electronic information technology industry, Shenzhen in recent years has taken the construction of a smart city as an important driving force to promote industrial transformation and upgrading, improving city management and giving full play to new technology.
Shenzhen, a city of hope and inclusiveness, reflects China's direction for development.
The views don't necessarily represent those of the CCTV.com.
The views don't necessarily reflect those of Qiushi Journal.