Why China is Building the World’s Biggest City


This video is sponsored by Skillshare. The first 500 to use the link in the description
get a two month free trial. Within a country, wealth and power are almost
always concentrated in just a few small regions. In the U.S., 37 of the 75 highest-earning
counties lie in the Northeastern corridor between Washington D.C. and Boston. And 54% of startups are first financed in
just five metropolitan areas. Trace the coasts and there you will find the
rich and powerful. China is no exception. The historic, political-capital of D.C. is
Beijing, The bustling, financial-center of New York
is Shanghai, And the fast-paced, innovative Silicon Valley
is the southern city of Shenzhen. Together, it, Hong Kong, Macau, Guangzhou,
and several other cities form the Pearl River Delta, one of the wealthiest and most vibrant
parts of China, and one of the most important to the world economy. It’s home to the third, fifth, and seventh
busiest container ship ports. It’s where your iPhone came from, And where
it will eventually end up. But while these are among China’s most internationally
open, connected, and capitalist cities, they’re also the most disconnected domestically. Despite being part of China, Hong Kong and
Macau have separate governments, laws, and freedoms. Residents of the two Special Administrative
Regions require a permit to cross the border into the mainland, and vice versa. Legally, they’re islands, and doing business
across them involves a sea of bureaucracy. At least, until now. China plans to integrate all these cities
into one Greater Bay Area – a megacity 58% bigger than the entire Tokyo Metropolitan
Area. San Fransisco’s Bay Area is home to about
7 million people. China’s, almost 70. It hopes to rival both Silicon Valley and
Wall Street – at the same time, with an economy already the size of South Korea or Russia. But many argue there’s another, hidden motivation
behind China’s plan. The train from West Kowloon, in downtown Hong
Kong, to Futian Station in Shenzhen, mainland China takes just 14 minutes. But in those 26 kilometers, almost everything
changes. British electrical outlets are replaced with
the Type I used in Australia and New Zealand. Sites like YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook
stop working, thanks to the Great Firewall, The Hong Kong Dollar becomes the Chinese Yuan, and the average income drops from 46 to 30,000
U.S. Dollars. All of this is due to Hong Kong’s unique
and complicated history. On June 30th, 1997, the United Kingdom officially
withdrew from the territory after 156 years of governance. And on July 1st, Hong Kong was returned to
China. But not without compromise. The Sino-British Joint Declaration stated
that, although Hong Kong would exist under the sovereignty of China, it was guaranteed
its own constitution, capitalist and legal systems for 50 years. “Hong Kong will be directly under the authority
of the Central People’s Government of the People’s Republic of China and will enjoy
a high degree of autonomy, except in foreign and defense affairs.” One country; Two systems. Likewise, the Portuguese and Chinese governments
signed the Joint Declaration on the Question of Macau. But with separate, detached governments come
separate, detached economies. For a region so dependent on trade and tourism,
traveling between cities is remarkably complicated. While the train from Hong Kong to Shenzhen
only takes 14 minutes, it first requires a lengthy immigration and customs process. First, by going through security, then, the
Hong Kong Departure procedure, and finally, receiving mainland arrival clearance, which
requires a separate visa. On the other side of Hong Kong, the longest
sea-crossing in the world connects to Macau and the mainland city of Zhuhai. But this $19 Billion dollar bridge which took
eight years to build, is surprisingly quiet. In 2018, 36 million people visited Macau,
88% of whom came from the mainland or Hong Kong, but only about one million total entered
through the bridge. The crossing is an amazing feat of engineering,
but also a bureaucratic nightmare. Because all three territories have separate
laws and regulations, crossing the bridge requires three separate insurance policies. In Hong Kong, car insurance is required to
cover $12.74 million US Dollars in damages, on the mainland, a tiny $18,172 dollars, and,
in Macau, a minimum of $185,524. Such a huge difference makes creating a single,
unified policy extremely difficult. And because of their British and Portuguese
influence, Hong Kong and Macau drive on the left side of the road. But the main bridge section is located in
mainland waters, so Hong Kong drivers have to switch to the right-hand side as they enter
the link bridge, even though that’s still in Hong Kong territory, travel briefly in
an undersea tunnel, allowing ships to pass overhead, and then change back to the left
side if they enter Macau. Making things even more complicated, there’s
a quota on private cars, of course, immigration and customs, and a toll, which, if you pay
in cash, has to be Chinese Yuan. Imagine how much harder it would be work in
San Fransisco if crossing the Golden Gate required a visa, permit, changing sides of
the road twice, and a few insurance policies. Oh – and don’t forget to pay with Mexican
Pesos. These inefficiencies are especially pronounced
in an area so rich with startups and large consumer markets. Doctors, lawyers, and investors, for example,
are often blocked from doing business across borders despite the huge economic potential,
if not legally, then out of confusion or frustration. Hong Kong and San Francisco have some of the
world’s most expensive rent. The former, however, is surrounded by other
terribly expensive cities – Palo Alto, San Jose, Berkeley, and so on. Hong Kong, on the other hand, has lots of
cheap labor for China’s increasingly service-based economy, right across the border, waiting
to be tapped into. The Chinese government sees this as a major
opportunity. The Greater Bay Area Plan, first announced
in 2016, and just released in February, is not one, but a series of steps to connect
these cities and make use of their vast differences. Macau will continue to be the Las Vegas of
the East, thanks to its geographically central location and relaxed gambling laws. Hong Kong, a global intermediary, allowing
foreign firms to invest in China, and, increasingly, for Chinese companies to access the wider
world. Its airport, one of the busiest in the world,
and now in the process of building a third runway, will act as a gateway to the rest
of the region. Already, 14 of its 75 million passengers a
year end up traveling to nearby cities and Cathay Pacific is considering selling two-in-one
plane tickets which include train or ferry travel to and from the airport. Shenzhen, meanwhile, will serve as China’s
Silicon Valley, home to some of the country’s biggest companies, including DJI, Tencent,
and BYD. Finally, Guangzhou, as the capital of the
entire Guangdong province, is the administrative and political center. And connecting them all are the first parts
of the plan: The train from Hong Kong to the mainland, The Hong Kong-Macau-Zhuhai Bridge,
whose details will hopefully be worked out, And another, currently in construction, will
connect Shenzhen to the other side of the mainland. Now, as these cities become more linked together,
wealth will spread outward. The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
has announced a second campus on the mainland, and many companies are investing in property
across the border in anticipation of the plan. Already, Shenzhen is nowhere near the cheap
source of labor it once was, and some cities will likely benefit more than others. But with 70 million people, there will long
be plenty of workers in surrounding areas. The economic case for the plan, is, therefore,
hard to refute. But so is the concerning trend that has followed: Remember that before you can get on the train
from Hong Kong to Shenzhen, you first have to pass mainland immigration. That means a portion of the terminal, in the
middle of downtown Hong Kong, is controlled by mainland authorities and governed by mainland
laws. Now, as an isolated event, this would be easy
to dismiss as a mere convenience for faster travel. After all, it’s quite similar to how the
Chinese government leases part of its Shenzhen port to Hong Kong. But this is occurring against a much larger
backdrop. In 2014, the Chinese government changed Hong
Kong’s election rules, limiting the democratic power of its people to elect their Chief Executive,
to which Hong Kongers took to the streets with their iconic yellow umbrellas. Later, during a football match, Hong Kong
fans booed at China’s national anthem. It ended in a tense 0-to-0 with Chinese police
wearing riot gear warning the crowd not to insult the song. The People’s Republic then passed a law
which made doing so illegal. And although Hong Kong is entitled to its
own laws, there’s an exception: a special section of its constitution which China has
the power to add to or remove from. More recently, the Hong Kong government is
proposing changing its extradition laws to allow some suspected criminals to be sent
to the mainland for prosecution. Both the UK and U.S. governments have warned
that “Hong Kong’s autonomy is at risk”, but it’s also clear the world is woefully
unprepared for a China which builds not walls, but bridges. It’s unlikely that either country would
risk raising tensions any further. Meanwhile, political unity and economic growth
are China’s absolute highest priorities. It will argue that the redundancies of Hong
Kong and Macau’s separation loses everyone time and money. Many locals, in turn, will argue that those
separations are exactly what makes their home so great. China will argue that no part of the Greater
Bay Area Plan fundamentally changes its relationship with the regions – that protestors are overreacting. And skeptics will argue gradual, symbolic
changes are exactly how freedom is usually lost. Hong Kong is unlike any other place on earth
– a culture within a culture, set to expire in 2047 when its promised autonomy ends. But the new era has, in many ways, already
begun. There are about 179,000 Hong Kongers worth
a million US dollars, which, divided by its 427 square miles, means you’d only need
to walk an average of 4 meters to cross paths with a millionaire. But as the world moves towards an automation-based
economy, the Greater Bay Area will need to invest in high skill workers to maintain its
advantage. And, truthfully, we should all be learning
skills to survive in the new economy, and a great way to get started is with Skillshare. In short, bite-sized videos, like this one,
you can watch me teach you how to make your own animated videos, or Business Casual show you how to invest
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link in the description, for the first 500 people.


100 Responses

  1. John Smith

    July 30, 2019 5:39 pm

    Is it a surprise that a insanely overpopulated country of 1.4 billion would have to build big cities?
    I think China would not need permission if it wanted to enter Hong Kong.

  2. Darris Hawks

    July 30, 2019 10:36 pm

    "partly free"
    "not free"
    lmao this capitalist nonsense. I know it's not your fault at Polymatter, but Freedomhouse is just American propaganda. The US State Department, a number of US agencies, and US-funded organizations give funding to Freedomhouse. It's an American mouthpiece.

  3. CinemaDemocratica

    July 31, 2019 9:13 am

    One of the unsung benefits of this video is how it further contextualizes the present turmoil in Hong Kong, and the likely response from Beijing.

  4. Cel McFarlane

    July 31, 2019 10:01 am

    All the neighbours of china are you still letting the chinese government them to keep provocating any other nation this chinese government are the most lier and greedy nation dont let them to keep doing the wrong things taking the ilands in other nation

  5. Michael Woo

    August 1, 2019 4:40 am

    My stupid sister in law said china build city no one live in and a bridge no one uses because watching this FU video.

  6. ThatDutchguy

    August 2, 2019 7:47 am

    Been to Portugal plenty of times and they drive on the side the rest of the entire continent of Europe drives,…the right side. (So, your steering is on the left of the car)

    Why Macau would drive on the wrong side of the road like the British and Hong Kong is a mystery to me 😕⁉

  7. ThatDutchguy

    August 2, 2019 8:08 am

    The extradition clause clearly states that: One can only be extradited to mainland China from Hong Kong if the prison sentence is a minimum of 7 years.

    This 7 year minimum prison term has to be directly connected to a crime committed on the mainland,…not Hong Kong.

    This 7 year sentence to prison can't be in any way based upon religious beliefs and or political affiliation alone.

    It has to be a serious crime commited like:

    1 fraud of a large sum of money that can carry a minimum of 7 years in prison and it has to have been committed on the mainland.
    2 Rape of a person in mainland China.
    3 Serious bodily harm of a person in mainland China that carries a 7 year term in prison at a minimum.
    4 Murder of a person in mainland China.

    If it doesn't comply to any of these 4 criteria's, you won't be extradited to mainland China under any circumstances.

    Hence these protest were a joke,…of uniformed masses stoked up by probably foreign (British) agitators,…let's be real here ;).

  8. Home Business University

    August 6, 2019 8:43 pm

    You cannot afford to live in potential for the rest of your life; at some point, you have to unleash the potential and make your move. – Eric Thomas

  9. Age case documentaries

    August 8, 2019 5:13 pm

    China went from an 80% poverty rate in 1981 to a 5% rate in 2019, 92% of Chinese people own their own home, but in Hong kong its 48%. People rent beds inside cages for 6 hours at a time as rent is so high in Hong kong but this video seems to think China is not a free country

  10. M.T.S The Shark Movie Reviews

    August 10, 2019 5:39 am

    How the frick can you make the largest city on earth. You can't force people to live in a city

  11. Fredrik Högström

    August 10, 2019 10:05 pm

    I feel bad for Hong Kong they lived good under Britain and soon they will have to become part of China a country that wouldn’t care anything like the massacre of students many years ago. When they loose their right to vote Hong Kong will not longer be the jewel in the east

  12. Nada Nada

    August 13, 2019 3:21 pm

    Estou pensando se poderia morar na China.
    Pedir azilo.
    Sou Cristã e quero pregar até para o Presidente da China.
    Mas,sei que O evangelho na China é fortemente rejeitado.Adoraria pregar para o chineses.
    E mostrar a sabedoria de Jesus.

  13. Nada Nada

    August 13, 2019 3:49 pm

    Qual é o País que gosta de Deus verdadeiramente?
    Onde,não deixam nem falar Dele,
    Ou o que aceita falar Dele ,só o que convém?

  14. Nada Nada

    August 13, 2019 4:00 pm

    E se for para eu ir para um País,onde não poderei pregar o Verdadeiro Evangelho ,com Liberdade prefiro ir para um Pais,que não possa nem falar.

  15. Ruixu Wang

    August 17, 2019 1:40 am

    How Hk car insurance can be achieved about 12740000 USD, please check the data. Hope the audience won't be fooled.

  16. Xuanyi Du

    August 17, 2019 10:22 am

    your video is very detailed about the Greater Bay Area. I'm from Shenzhen, thanks for your video! There's still a lot to work on in terms if Hong Kong and Macau's relationships with mainland China

  17. tony'sMelody TM

    August 18, 2019 6:55 am

    ;. You know? What if HKong KEK's decide democraticlly that all political refugees from China mainland can come to HKong. You know, democratic and persecuted forces. Falong gong members, Oeigoers (for muslims I think they are pretty well behaved. I met refugees in Holland. Very quiet, very grateful people, small and easygoing), people fleeing from N-korea',

    You know, people with a grudge for Beijing-cuckery, and willingness to stand togehter on this last one of all Crusades.

    Who knows, at least that is what I would decide for the camera's of all msm. Then China has to invade, on camera, Kekistan EastCoast all the time when their feelings got hurt, by somebody with a different opinion, boohoo boehoo Chinese Beijing-Cuks, boohooo.

  18. EXZY Dubstep

    August 19, 2019 12:05 pm

    This video didn’t age well. China is about to use military force because Hong Kong is still protesting. They’re not “overreacting”

  19. Manny Gonzalez

    August 21, 2019 8:52 pm

    New York has 20 million people in the whole state of New York. So I’m confused about the New York number.

  20. unifieddynasty

    August 22, 2019 8:33 am

    Guangzhou is not just an administrative center. It is also a massive manufacturing and supply chain hub.

  21. George Calm

    August 26, 2019 8:23 am

    Hong Kong is much cleaner and generally nicer place to live then generally mainland China. I've been in both places. And nobody tells you what to read, think, do unlike in mainland China. I think that's the main issue here, not different infrastructure projects. Polymatter seems in owe with Chinese megaprojects, forgetting the main thing which ultimatly makes successful nation: freedom.

  22. chwbk

    August 30, 2019 5:16 am

    They didnt build it so people could cross it, but instead so their tanks can, when they are about to invade hong kong.

  23. Mr. Bit Busuk

    August 31, 2019 3:23 pm

    western or usa media always make china,russia,muslim or other country look bad…because white people they just looser…your to much freedom make you stupid ..

  24. Pantokrator

    September 3, 2019 8:16 am

    Because the real state bubble is in danger of collapsing, they need those profits so they need to keep building and building.

  25. Gul Majeed

    September 8, 2019 8:42 pm

    Pink panther is Chinese ping pong table tennis ten commandments I don't think professor clouseau could see that who remembers the cartoon pink panther

  26. Gul Majeed

    September 8, 2019 8:46 pm

    Who remembers robin Crusoe stuck with Friday Asian character teaching robin Crusoe on an island like Hong Kong China

  27. Efren Plaza

    September 10, 2019 4:08 am

    It's not going to happen! Once Hongkong lose its autonomy, it will no longer be treated by US and UK with special previleges. Foreign companies will move out of Hongkong, killing the goose that lay golden egg. Even now because Hongkong is paralyzed they are losing billions of dollars everyday. China's yuan is worthless, monopoly money, only good inside China. Companies will not take yuan as payment. They will need dollars to be able transact business in the free world.

  28. Isabella Rhoslyn

    September 10, 2019 7:47 am

    from what ive read people want to live in hong kong because of its freedoms and capitalism and uniqueness and unique culture, in some ways connecting hongkong to china and taking away the border and streamlining the laws could do the exact opposite of what it hopes to achieve, as it will make hongkong just another town/city/place in china, no longer of any particular economic or strategic importance perse or could be easily replicated elsewhere in china at that point.

    hong kongs value is because of so many businesses and entrepreneurs so many students and immigrants and dreamers and inventors clustered in one relatively small area.

    and hong kong being free is why people want to live there to a large extent, and the current economic system and governance it has is why historically businesses wanted to invest there and why it became the financial trading mecca of asia rivaling singapore back in the 70s and 80s.

    basically china wants to tear down barriers thinking it will boost shenzhen and the mainland, but really it will more likely then not depreciate hong kong in value instead, as they will be basically shooting themselves in the foot destroying the very things that made them covet hong kong in the first place and press the british in the 1990s to give it back, they were pretty much content to let the british have it until it became more then just a enclave of free chinese and a few british american and austrailian ex-pats and retirees, and morphed into a global financial trading manufacturing center and major tourist port of call…at that point it became a black eye…they didnt want the world's exposure to china and chinese culture being from china towns around the world, from taiwanese and hongkong "made in china" products, and from what they considered "not china" china in terms of hongkong being tacitly permitted to be the public face of china/chinese culture to the world.

    they still definitely wanted hong kong back someday since its considered to be their land/territory, but for the longest time they slowly took/asked for other british concessions in china back but left them have hongkong without seeming to care in the slightest as long as they got everything else back. originally the plans were to let them have macao back but keep hongkong or renegotiate the lease for however long the chinese would be willing to except and dangle macao to be allowed to keep hongkong, there was even talk in the 1990s from what i've read about trying to make hong kong independent or part of england or the us possibly someday, to satisfy the people living in hong kong and to solve the problem of "not china" china aka hong kong giving china a black eye by truly making hong kong its own entity or making it no longer china to solve the problem that way.

    china though ended up converting to a form of capitalism itself on the mainland and if i recall the economy of hongkong was at one point by itself exponentially something like 80x greater or something like that then mainland china's or something i forget now, but it was essentially the economic engine/driver of all of asia for several decades, basically its success is what doomed hongkong because it became a "jewel in the crown" type of signature city that china decided it couldn't lose and desperately had to bring back into the fold

    so essentially while they are trying to do a good thing by streamlining everything and interconnecting hongkong with macao and shenzhen etc and eliminating trade barriers and creating a larger "pearl city" as you called the area/development plans, it won't work unless they can find a way to continue the culture uniqueness exclusivity etc that make hongkong special and make people think of hongkong as a gateway city.

    it needs to be like new orleans was originally intended to be for the united states sort of a gateway port of call and jewel city welcoming/beckoning everyone to come visit and filtering people into the country. only they need to execute on the concept alot better with hongkong as new orleans fell far short of any aspirations/plans/hopes/dreams people had for it, largely becoming just another city in many ways/respects.

  29. John TNet

    September 12, 2019 4:17 am

    You can't compare your average "1 bedroom" because you do not not account for size. The "average" 1 bedroom in HK is around 100-150 sq ft. The average in San-Fran is closer to 600 sqft.

  30. 吴天意

    September 16, 2019 12:03 pm

    Wtf pfffff a fact in between China and it's territory. why the U.S and UK are worried? Wtf are u try to told us? A Chinese's business U.S must worried? Oh cmon don't be an idiot😂😂😂😂😂 we all know U.S is an asshole

  31. Ernest Kwok

    September 17, 2019 6:38 pm

    unfortunately china labor isn't as cheap anymore esp those along the coastal cities. most cheap labor factories has gone to Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand.

  32. 谢梓旺

    September 20, 2019 7:24 pm

    China’s 5,000-year history has always been the world’s number one. Your paper, compass, gunpowder, are all invented by us. Do we want your patent fees? China fell asleep in modern times, so I was persecuted by Western countries. I just want to say that Dad is back! ! !

  33. Pro & Contra Deutschland

    September 21, 2019 5:48 pm

    As a German I wonder about the Thumbnail! I think it shows an ICE-train (=Intercity Express). That is a GERMAN highspeed train, not a Chinese. YES!! WE CAN BUILD THEM, TOO!!! AND WE DID SO DECADES BEFORE CHINA!!! 💪


  34. Pro & Contra Deutschland

    September 21, 2019 5:52 pm

    One important correction! The pearl river delta is not "one of the wealthiest regions" of China. It's THE ONLY wealthy region in China!!!! (Great video still! I regularly recommend this channel to friends and collegues).

  35. Jon Ho

    September 22, 2019 4:53 pm

    Fun facts: Hong Kong and Macau aren't built by China, they have better economies before handover haha.
    Hong Kong accounts for 25% of China economy in 1997 while only 3.x % nowadays.

  36. Jon Ho

    September 22, 2019 4:56 pm

    Another fun fact: According to Sino-British Joint Declaration, China shouldn't disrupt Hong Kong's high degree of autonomy for 50years from 1997 to 2047.
    And now its only 2019, and Hongkongers clearly think that the legal system being disrupted by China, that's why 2million of people march out to the street, the issue hasn't been resolved from 9 June 2019 till now


    September 27, 2019 10:20 am

    OMFG, China is going to see hell break loose, with Hong Kong defying all the central state of Beijing Communist. 2047 will bring all the laws to its knees, and China will do as it pleases.

  38. Bang Nasruddin

    September 29, 2019 2:10 pm

    If you need traditional tourism, come to this City…!!!

    Buffalo Cutting for The Death Ceremony in Toraja City, South East, Indonesia.

    Have you ever seen this before???

  39. Pedro lucas

    October 2, 2019 1:22 pm

    Hong Kong:rich,poor,war chinese people,big population,speaking inglês,chinese !
    Macau:rich in the world in pib capita is 2020,not war people chinese,speaking portuguese and chinese!
    Brother big love macau!
    Familiy portuguese!
    Im brazilian

  40. S N

    October 4, 2019 7:18 pm

    HK history is not complicated why not telling people the truth? On the colonial history of HK. This is a propaganda video…. I came here to watch economic video and found this fake reporting instead

  41. LIBERTY for humanity

    October 8, 2019 5:10 pm

    Xi Jinping and 100%OF of the corrupt CANCER CHINESE GOVERNMENT is the BIGGEST threat, NIGHTMARE, FOR HUMANITY including animals

  42. Nathan D

    October 8, 2019 11:57 pm

    "The former" means "the first one" (6:08), used incorrectly when you spoke on Hong Kong vs. San Fran rents. But this was an outstanding video!

  43. Yeehaw Lads

    October 10, 2019 5:56 am

    I went to Hong Kong before, when you enter the security and the passport checks; China treats us foreigners unfairly. The Chinese people who live in China have 5 lanes. We foreigners only have 2.


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