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City scores lower in integrity stakes


Jennifer Ngo
Jul 11, 2012

Hong Kong is no longer in the top 10 Chinese cities for government integrity a year after topping a researchorganisation’s rankings, with a failure to tackle society’s problems blamed.

The China Institute of City Competitiveness’s annual survey ranks cities and provinces according to 27 criteria, but its latest list, released at Baptist University yesterday, saw Weihai , in eastern Shandong , come top in the integrity stakes.

“There were a lot of negative reports on the Hong Kong government in the past two years, which has affected its ratings,” said Gui Qiangfang, the organisation’s president. The 10th annual rankings include ratings for growth potential, liveability, innovation, environment and the economy. Economic development, social development and culture were also taken into consideration.

Hong Kong ranked second for integrated competitiveness, taking in most of the criteria, with Guangdong at the top. Taiwan dropped to fourth after topping the list last year. Shanghai and Beijing were ranked seventh and ninth respectively.

Gui said Hong Kong missed top spot because it was far smaller than its neighbouring province, which takes in big cities such as Guangzhou and Shenzhen, and because of the rapid growth of mainland cities.

“Hong Kong is still undoubtedly the most competitive city [in China]. But in terms of growth, mainland cities have been taking big economic leaps,” he said.

Hong Kong also missed out on the top 10 for innovation and liveability, and dropped from 10th to 13th for growth potential.

“Hong Kong has [the] potential to become a very innovative city. There is good research in the universities here, but not much of it was actually developed and used,” Gui said.

Gui said Hong Kong needs to encourage creative industries and should create room for development of industries other than finance.

The research was compiled in association with Baptist University’s Advanced Institute for Contemporary China Studies, which has come under fire for producing a handbook for the controversial national education curriculum which critics say is heavily biased towards the mainland.

Ranked No 2 in the integrity list is Ordos, located in Inner Mongolia, while Yantai , a city in northeastern Shandong, is third. The rundown from fourth to tenth is: Nanjing , Dalian , Siping in Jilin province, Harbin ,Zhuzhou in Hunan , Tangshan in Hebei, and Xinxiang in Henan.

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