Tianjin eyeing AI, improved business climate

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Tianjin eyeing AI, improved business climate - Exploring Tianjin

Tianjin is boosting the use of artificial intelligence and slashing the cost of doing business amid efforts to transform itself from a heavy industrial center into an entrepreneurial city, senior municipal officials said on Wednesday.

Speaking at a panel discussion of the Government Work Report during the ongoing session of the 13th National People's Congress, Li Hongzhong, Tianjin's Party chief, said the central leadership's flagship development plan for the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei city cluster has brought about huge opportunities for his city.

The plan - disclosed in 2015 to relieve Beijing of nongovernmental functions and to address the capital's woes including traffic jams and pollution - is accelerating the flow of production across the entire region, said Li, who is also a member of the Party's political bureau.

Li noted the change has offered new growth momentum for Tianjin in developing high-tech industries led by AI after years of sluggish growth that was overly dependent on heavy industry. The imbalance has also led to serious pollution, including heavy smog in winter.

To facilitate the change, the municipality has enhanced efforts to streamline its administration so as to lower the cost of doing business. "Now we have begun to see favorable trends in the city's development," he said.

Zhang Guoqing, mayor of Tianjin, said the ratio of administrative fees in the city's fiscal revenue has been declining since 2017, and his office will see to it that overall business expenses decrease by the end of this year.

Li Jiajun, Party chief of Tianjin University, approved of Tianjin's plan to develop high-end technologies including AI, saying China's leading role in AI has made the plan feasible.

He said China has been leading AI development in the number of global patents and academic papers, but added that their quality still has room for improvement.

Contact the writers at lilei@chinadaily.com.cn

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