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Italy’s Economic Diplomacy, 6 June: latest news from the world

China: Shanghai ‘s cultural development plan kicks off
In 2017, the city of  Shanghai launched an extensive urban renovation plan focused on the rehabilitation and conservation of historical buildings and the construction of major cultural centres in reconverted industrial spaces.
Among the projects which are being implemented there is the new building of the Shanghai Museum, which aspires to become the second national museum in China after the one in Beijing; a gallery to host Chinese contemporary art; the new children’s library; the great Opera House of Pudong, which is due to be opened in 2020; the great West Bund Art Musuem, which is expected to open early in November in a building designed by archistar David Chipperfield.
In Shanghai’s north-western district of Jiading, an old industrial compound will be trasformed into a park embracing 30 museums with their respective entertainment facilities. The Pudong district is particularly focused for the implementation of large projects and will in fact include the construction of the Shanghai Museum East Hall, the Shanghai Library East Hall and the Shanghai Grand Opera House. The Pudong Art Museum will be built near the Oriental Pearl and the same district will also host the Pudong Mass Art Museum and a Pudong Youth Culture Center. The Baoshan District (in the city’s north-eastern area) will see the construction of an art gallery and a music auditorium. The current 5-year plan envisages the completion of the West Bund Culture Corridor in the very central Xuhui district, a project started in 2011 along the Huangpu River banks. 
The rising number and the improved quality of such centres is part of a comprehensive objective aimed at gradually enhancing the cultural and creative inputs of the city, thus aspiring to become one of the great international culture capitals by 2035. The municipal  government in fact plans to pass several measures to make Shanghai increasingly open to international cultural partnerships in this sector, thus attracting cutting-edge enterprises, talents and professionals. Furthermore, direct investments and tax relief measures are meant to promote the growth of innovative start-ups and the establishment of international companies in the city, thus turning Shanghai into their hub in Asia. 
The city’s international profile will be further consolidated by enhancing the numerous international events (fairs, cultural and sports events) and by creating new ones. The implementation of cultural development plans will be accompanied by specific measures aiming to consolidate the growth of a benchmark market, facilitate large cultural projects, promote innovation in financial services for creative cultural industries, thus enhancing Shanghai’s attractiveness and international influence as the venue of major cultural events and streamlining the normative and administrative system which regulates the industry.
Measures have also been developed to allow the inflow of human and financial resources destined to develop this sector: namely direct investments to be made via the municipal funds earmarked for cultural promotion and tax relief measures; the preferential allocation of plots of land and buildings to be used for cultural and creative activities; credit facilities for the construction of buildings in commercial areas to be used for cultural purposes; the simplification of application procedures for permanent stay permits and Chinese visas for foreign creative cultural talents; the concession of state-owned apartments to young cultural talents at subsidized prices.

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