China's marine economy speeds up green transformation and shows great resilience in 2022

Updated: April 21, 2023 Source: Belt and Road Portal
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A fishing vessel (front) helps to harvest Atlantic salmons at a fish farming experimental area of Qingdao, east China's Shandong Province, June 7, 2022.(Xinhua/Li Ziheng)

China's marine economy reported stable growth and great resilience, and sped up green transformation with innovation-driven development in 2022.

-- Steady development of marine economy

According to a marine economic statistical bulletin recently released by the Ministry of Natural Resources, the preliminary calculation of China's gross marine product in 2022 reached 9,462.8 billion yuan, up 1.9 percent year on year, and accounting for 7.8 percent of China's total GDP.

In terms of quarters, China's the marine economy showed a V-shaped development with strong resilience. 

Emerging marine industries such as seawater desalination, ocean power, marine pharmaceuticals and biological products, and marine engineering equipment manufacturing grew rapidly in 2022, with a total added value of 192.6 billion yuan, up 7.9 percent year on year, said an official from the Ministry of Natural Resources.

The steady development of China's marine economy is strongly supported by the blue finance. 

In 2022, coastal cities such as Qingdao and Shenzhen have issued measures on promoting mortgage loans for marine use rights, and guided the banking and insurance industry to promote the development of blue finance, said the official, adding that many banking and insurance institutions have launched related business.

Meanwhile, the scale of the blue bond market continues to expand. According to the bulletin, 16 blue bonds were issued domestically in 2022, with a total issuance scale of 11.1 billion yuan, mainly invested in fields such as offshore wind power, seawater desalination, and deep-sea aquaculture. 

In addition, marine industry funds have been established to support the development of the industry. Southeast China's Fujian Province has set up a 20-billion-yuan marine economic industry investment fund, and Shenzhen has established a 10-billion-yuan green shipping fund.

-- Orderly development of marine resources

According to the official from the Ministry of Natural Resources, China's ability to guarantee the production of marine resources has been continuously enhanced.

In 2022, the number of national marine ranch demonstration zones increased to 153, the production of marine crude oil and natural gas increased by 6.2 percent and 10.2 percent year on year respectively, and the incremental marine crude oil accounted for more than 60 percent of the country's total crude oil increment.

The bulletin showed that three major demands of consumption, investment, and foreign trade have stimulated the development potential of the marine economy and promoted its steady growth. 

In terms of consumption demand, China's output of marine products in 2022 increased by 2.4 percent year on year, while the import value of aquatic products increased by 40.6 percent year on year.

In terms of investment, fixed asset investment in the marine sector showed steady growth. Data shows that in port construction, from January to November 2022, the completed fixed asset investment in coastal ports reached 71.5 billion yuan, up 6.3 percent year on year. 

Meanwhile, table growth in China's foreign trade has driven the rapid development of marine transportation. China's coastal ports added more than 100 new foreign trade routes, with container throughput increasing by 4.6 percent year on year, and the total import and export value of marine transportation jumping by 15.3 percent year on year. 

-- Accelerated pace of innovation

In 2022, scientific and technological innovation accelerated the high-quality development of the marine economy. 

According to the bulletin, last year, a 18-megawatt offshore wind turbine and a 126-meter offshore wind blade were successfully launched, and the "Fuyao" deep-sea floating wind power equipment was put into demonstration application. BG136 for injection became the first international anti-tumor marine polysaccharide drug to enter clinical trials.

Furthermore, high-end equipment manufacturing is further promoting the upgrading of traditional marine industries. China's self-designed and built deepwater pipeline support platform "Haiji-1" was officially put into operation, and the independently developed deepwater subsea oil production tree system was successfully put into use, unlocking a new mode of deepwater oil and gas development in China.

In addition, the 100,000-tonne large-scale aquaculture vessel "Guoxin No.1" was delivered, and the world's first 140-meter pile-driving ship "Yihangjin Pile" was put into use.

"Blue energy +" diversified development model has become a new trend in China, with the marine industry continuing promoting the use of clean energy. In 2022, 186 million kilowatt-hours of green electricity was first applied to the Bohai offshore oil and gas field, the first high-low voltage hybrid ship-to-shore power system was officially put into operation in Tianjin Port, and shore power for non-owned ro-ro passenger ships at Yantai Port was applied as well.

In the future, the supply chain of China's marine industry chain will continue to be improved, the industry's green transformation and upgrading will continue to be accelerated, and new results will be achieved in the high-quality development of the marine economy, noted the official.

Editor: Li Shimeng