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Financing Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City: What Lessons Can Be Drawn for Other Large-Scale Sustainable City-Projects?

Changjie Zhan and Martin De Jong ()
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Changjie Zhan: Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management, Delft University of Technology, Jaffalaan 5, 2600 GA Delft, The Netherlands
Martin De Jong: Faculty of Technology, Policy and Management, Delft University of Technology, Jaffalaan 5, 2600 GA Delft, The Netherlands

Sustainability, 2017, vol. 9, issue 2, 1-17

Abstract: Sino-Singapore Tianjin Eco-City (SSTEC) is currently the best-known and arguably the most successful large-scale sustainable new town development project in China; as such, experiences gathered there are of significant importance for the development of other eco-cities in China and elsewhere. This article focuses on a thus far relatively understudied aspect of SSTEC, the financial vehicles used to fund SSTEC. The authors find that highly structured and intense collaboration at the national level between China and Singapore plays a catalytic role in attracting many other players to the project by giving them confidence that it is too big to fail. It encourages various preferential policies from lower governmental bodies, broad involvement of the private sector, a market-based operation model and the issuing of bonds in Singapore, which all contribute significantly to Tianjin eco-city’s financial viability. The broad involvement of the private sector relieves part of the financial burden from local governments, while the bonds issued in international markets lower the interest rate for master developers. However, the Sino-Singaporean collaboration at the national level is far less likely to be replicated to other eco-cities, since this requires an enormous willingness on the part of other countries to invest manpower, money, and other resources into the construction of eco-cities in China.

Keywords: Tianjin Eco-City; financial arrangements; organizational arrangements; bonds; China (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 O13 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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