Policy Spotlight | Policy updates you shouldn’t miss

Now Shenzhen   |   February 27, 2024

10 key projects selected to advance people’s well-being

During the closing meeting of Shenzhen’s annual legislative meeting in early February, local lawmakers voted on 10 key projects aimed at enhancing people’s well-being for the year. These projects will guide the city government in improving the lives of its residents.

Residents stroll in Shenzhen Talent Park in Nanshan District. Photo from Shenzhen Evening News

Chosen from a list of 12 candidate projects, the selected projects cover a wide range of areas of improving food safety supervision and guarantee, improving health-care services, increasing government-subsidized housing, enhancing basic education quality, creating a child-friendly environment, enhancing elderly care in communities, strengthening diversified employment, optimizing citizens’ travel experience, creating a trustworthy consumption environment, and expanding the coverage of NEV charging services.

Improve food safety supervision and guarantee

The city will continue to carry out the food safety assurance project, revise 100 standards for products under the Shenzhen Standard program, and increase 400 new products under the program.

Improve health-care services

The city will increase its medical facilities by adding 8,000 hospital beds, over 35 community health-care centers, and employing more than 500 general practitioners.

An aerial view of the Pingshan District Central Hospital. The hospital went operational in December 2023. Photo from sznews.com

Increase govt.-subsidized housing

Shenzhen plans to construct 10,000 government-subsidized apartments and allocate 65,000 sets of housing.

Enhance basic education quality

Shenzhen will construct, refurbish, and expand 130 kindergartens, primary and middle schools, and offer 170,000 school admissions, namely 140,000 public primary and middle school admissions, 10,000 for public high schools, and 20,000 for kindergartens.

Create child-friendly environment

Shenzhen aims to establish classes for children 2 to 3 years old and increase the number of admissions by 22,000. Additionally, the city plans to build 40 nursery rooms in parks, and renovate and expand indoor and outdoor spaces for children’s activities. The city aims that its child-friendly community reach 60%.

Enhance elderly care in communities

The city also seeks to promote social initiatives in elderly care services, by adding 800 beds in service institutes and establishing 23 elderly care service stations. Over 70% of the communities with an aging population will have access to elderly service stations.

Elderly residents have lunch in a canteen for the elderly in Nanyuan Community, Futian District. Photo from Dute News

Strengthen diversified employment

The city plans to create a minimum of 180,000 job opportunities, offer employment guidance for new graduates, provide up to seven days of free accommodation for them, and provide skill training for 16,000 workers.

Optimize citizens’ travel experience

Efforts will be made to enhance the coordination between bus and metro lines, optimize and adjust over 110 bus routes, standardize the renovation of over 100 old and simply equipped bus stops, and optimize the traffic routes for non-motorized vehicles throughout the city.

Create a trustworthy consumption environment

Efforts will be made to increase 2,500 new trustworthy consumption units and 1,500 stores that adopt prepaid digital RMB application in the city.

Expand the coverage of NEV charging services

The city will strive to build 1,000 superchargers and 50,000 charging piles to enhance the convenience of charging facilities.

A supercharging station inside the parking lot near the west entrance of Lianhua Hill Park in Futian District. Photo from Dute News

City eases restrictions on home buying

Shenzhen made major adjustments to home buying rules in early February in a bid to help boost home sales and stabilize the city’s real estate market.

According to a notice issued by the city’s housing authority, the residency duration requirement for residents with hukou (permanent residency permit) will be canceled and requirements for paying personal income tax and participating in social security for a certain period of time will also be removed.

Restrictions on home buying in Shenzhen have been eased. File photo

A household that has at least one hukou holder can purchase up to two homes while a single adult with a hukou (including divorcees) can purchase one apartment.

Families without a hukou-holding member and single individuals (including divorcees) without hokou, who can provide proof of continuous payment of personal income tax or social security in the city for the previous three years, can each purchase one apartment.

The new policy is effective from Feb. 7.

According to financial and property market analyst Liu Xiaobo, the new policy has greatly eased home buying restrictions for residents who hold hukou.

Previously, an individual was required to hold hukou for at least three years and continuously pay social security or personal income tax for at least three years before being allowed to purchase a home in Shenzhen.

Under the new policy, an individual is eligible to purchase a property in Shenzhen upon obtaining Shenzhen hukou as long as they are 18 years of age or older. Parents who relocate to Shenzhen to reunite with their adult children with Shenzhen hukou are also eligible to purchase homes.

In addition, local youths with hukou who reach 18 years old can now purchase properties without having to pay social insurance for three years.

Additionally, the new policy has relaxed purchasing restrictions for non-hukou populations.

Previously, non-hukou residents who were eligible to purchase a home were required to provide documents proving that they have paid personal income tax or social security in the city for five years or more without interruption before the purchase date. The new policy cut the five years to three.

Currently, the strictest cities in China in terms of home purchase restrictions are Beijing, Shenzhen, Shanghai, and Guangzhou.

The restrictive home buying policy was first introduced by the State Council in April 2010 to limit the number of properties local residents could purchase in more than 40 cities with soaring real estate prices.

SZ releases first local standard for dark sky community

Shenzhen has rolled out the first local standard on light environment for dark sky community.

The standard, according to local authorities, is set to take effect from March, as it gives specifications in terms of the quality of the night sky in dark communities, management of the light environment and community management requirements.

The implementation of the standard will improve the light environment of dark night community, create high-quality starry sky and Milky Way landscape, and help boost tourism and night economy, local authorities said.

The starry sky observed in Xichong, Dapeng New Area. Photo by Tang Baihong

With more and more people taking an interest in dark sky conservation and light pollution control, China’s first International Dark Sky Community was established in Shenzhen last year.

The community, located in Xichong, about 60 km from Shenzhen’s downtown, has become a popular place for local residents to get away from the hustle and bustle and enjoy the quiet dark sky and the Milky Way.

The standard was jointly launched by the Meteorological Bureau of Shenzhen Municipality, Shenzhen Astronomical Observatory, and other institutes.