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China Daily Website

Industrial association to boost smart city

Updated: 2013-10-10 15:44
By MENG JING ( chinadaily.com.cn)

China's first national smart city industrial association was founded in Beijing on Thursday to boost the development of smart technologies in China and help the country meet its urbanization challenges.

The association, named China Smart Cities Industry Alliance, has more than 100 member companies and is expected to become an important platform to promote communication among people in government organizations, academia and the business world.

Qin Hai, chief of the informatization promotion department with China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, said that developing smart cities is a necessity for the new-mode of urbanization in China.

"Developing smart cities is in line with China's goal of achieving green, low-carbon and sustainable development," Qin said at the founding ceremony of the alliance.

The Chinese government has been very proactive in promoting the development of smart cities. A list of 103 cities, districts, towns and industrial zones, from Lhasa on the Tibetan Plateau to Shanghai in the well-developed East China region, have been earmarked recently by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development for development into smart city pilots.

The list, which was released in August, is the second batch of smart city pilots in China. The first batch of 90 pilots was released in January.

Despite being a very hot topic in China over the past couple of years, there are no standards or benchmarks on the evaluation of smart cities, a fact that some feel could hamper their implementation in China.

 Xiong Gaizhi, secretary-general of the China Smart Cities Industry Alliance, pledged to set up a smart city evaluation system and draft an industrial code of conduct by 2014 to boost the growth of smart technologies in China.

"So many cities rush to build some smart pilot projects. Without a benchmarking system, it is very difficult to decide whether or not a city is technically sophisticated enough to be called a smart city," said Xiong.


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