China Daily (Canada) - - SHANGHAI -

First quar­ter eco­nomic growth in Shang­hai this year was buoyed by the ser­vice and real es­tate mar­kets, ac­cord­ing to the fig­ures re­leased by the Shang­hai Statis­tics Bureau. The city’s gross do­mes­tic prod­uct grew 6.7 per­cent on a yearly ba­sis in the first three months to 622.54 bil­lion yuan ($95.48 bil­lion). Ser­vice out­put also rose 11.5 per­cent to 439.76 bil­lion yuan, con­tribut­ing to more than 70 per­cent of the lo­cal GDP for the first time. The growth in the ser­vice sec­tor also out­paced the na­tional av­er­age by 3.9 per­cent­age points. New home sales by value jumped 97 per­cent to 108.86 bil­lion yuan in the first quar­ter, nearly dou­bling the speed of growth in the same pe­riod last year.

More than 1,000 sci­encere­lated ac­tiv­i­ties have been made free to the pub­lic dur­ing the an­nual Shang­hai Science Week which is tak­ing place be­tween May 14 and 21. The eight-day pro­gram started with a red car­pet event fea­tur­ing 20 young sci­en­tists from China and abroad. Dur­ing the week, mem­bers of the pub­lic can en­ter 222 science venues for free as well as en­joy dis­counts on ad­mis­sion tick­ets to 55 other venues in­clud­ing the Shang­hai Nat­u­ral His­tory Mu­seum. A to­tal of 16 science films are be­ing shown at the Shang­hai Science Cinema.

The for­mer site of Expo 2010 Shang­hai will be trans­formed into a worldlevel Cen­tral Ac­tiv­i­ties Zone, ac­cord­ing to the city’s 13th Five-Year Plan. The idea is based on the con­cept of a Cen­tral Busi­ness Zone and aims to cre­ate a mixed cul­tural and eco­nomic clus­ter of bou­tique ho­tels, high-qual­ity res­i­den­tial blocks and cul­tural in­dus­trial venues. Per­form­ing arts, fenc­ing cul­ture and art gal­leries will be open in those ex­ist­ing pavil­ions on the site. The plan will also kick off with 23 con­struc­tion projects com­pris­ing 1.86 mil­lion square me­ters of of­fice space, Shang­hai’s largest in­ter­na­tional hospi­tal, schools and parks.

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