The zone was previously known as Changji Economic and Technological Development Zone. It was set up in 1992 and upgraded to a provincial level high-tech industrial zone in 2000, and became the Changji National High-tech Industrial Development Zone with approval of the State Council. It was further escalated to the State level in September 2010. It covers an area of 426 square kilometers, of which 34 square kilometers was developed in the start-up stage and another 54 square kilometers were reserved for a near-to-mid-term development plan.
Located in the Silk Road economic belt 49 kilometers away from the downtown of Urumqi and 38 kilometers away from the airport of Urumqi, the development zone is a strategic core area of China’s “Urumqi-Changji-Shihezi” city agglomeration. It is an important transportation hub that links the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region with the other parts of the Chinese mainland. It is also a key linkage with Central Asia and West Asia and European markets.
The development zone has concentrated its efforts on changes in three major industries: to improve the efficiency of machinery and equipment manufacturing, to improve the quality of new materials and to increase the capacity of the bio-technologies. Some 234 companies started operation in the development zone in 2018, bringing the total number of companies to 1,007. The development zone was in talks with 210 projects last year, 90 of which finally signed agreements for a total investment of 24 billion yuan ($3.55 billion). Among the signed deals, the investment of 11 projects surpasses 100 million yuan each. These projects have greatly improved the overall quality, influence and competitiveness of the companies in the development zone.
The development zone has been building an innovation-driven experimental area along the Silk Road since 2016 to be completed in 2020which will maintain the low operation costs of the companies and become more attractive to scientific and high-tech professionals. It aims to be a smart economic cooperative city where nature and the city can interact, industry and residence can balance and tourism, health-care and industrial development can realize win-win outcomes.