INDUSTRIAL PARKS AS DRIVERS OF GLOBAL ECONOMY
Industrial parks have great importance for the economy development – from local and regional, to the global level. They represent modern platforms that provide excellent conditions for investment and development, encourage industrial development, and bring large benefits to countries.
The way in which industrial parks, for more than a century, have been shaping the development of production, trade, transport and the economy in general, can best be observed through successful examples and figures.
THE POSITION OF INDUSTRIAL PARKS NOWADAYS
In highly developed countries, industrial parks are enormous business centers with all the necessary infrastructure, and are placed at the intersections of key transport links. This has made it easier for tenants to do business, use resources, apply a circular business model, reduce expenses, and better manage their risks.
For underdeveloped and medium-developed countries, industrial parks are the most efficient way of stimulating economic development, modernizing the industry, embracing innovation, and increasing the number of jobs available. The most important thing is that the development of parks attracts foreign investments, which is of strategic importance for these countries.
The most successful example of this is China, which has gone through incredible development over four decades. During that period, 215 industrial parks were opened at the national level, and over 1000 parks at the provincial level. The parks were being opened in accordance with the economic needs of each region, which has led to a huge economic and industrial development. China has reached such a level of development, that today it provides financial and technical support to parks under the auspices of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization – UNIDO.
The scale that parks can bring to economic development is depicted in the example of the third largest American industrial park, and one of the ten largest in the world. The park in question is MidAmerica Industrial Park which has existed for 60 years, and has been nicknamed “Industrial Utopia”. This nickname is justified, because the park is a home to 80 companies, with over 4,500 employees, and Google’s second largest data center is located here.
MidAmerica Industrial Park constantly offers capacities ready for the construction of new facilities adapted to tenants’ needs, easy access to water sources, wastewater management services, energy sources, and electricity of up to 1900 MWatt. Numerous administrative and tax reliefs come as a special convenience, because the park is located on the territory of the Cherokee tribe. This is one of the many areas with the special status within the US legal system, within which it is possible to achieve different, more favorable business conditions.
INDUSTRIAL PARKS IN NUMBERS
When industrial parks are observed in terms of numbers, among the first stands out India with 4347 parks and 102209.27Ha of usable land. Observed individually by area, the world’s largest parks are:
- 1. Jubail Industrial City, Saudi Arabia – 920 km2 – area greater than New York
- 2. Alberta’s Industrial Heartland, Canada – 582 km2
- 3. Tahoe-Reno Industrial Center – United States – 432 km2
- 4. Yanbu Industrial City, Saudi Arabia, 185 km2
- 5. KAEC Industrial Valley, Saudi Arabia, 181 km2
The figures concerning jobs within industrial parks are also interesting. According to available data, in the period from 2013 to 2019, the number of employees in Russia tripled, going from the initial 56,770 to 163,650 active jobs.
Data on the number of employees in Quonset Park, a leading development force on Rhode Island in America, is also known. Once a naval base, this industrial park now houses over 200 companies and provides 12,200 jobs. The park is a leader in creating new jobs, and currently accounts for 17% of manufacturing jobs in the state. It is also a leader in stimulating economic development, because it attracts 2 billion in private investments.
Exact figures on industrial parks and their impact on Serbia’s economic development are not yet available. However, it is known that the interest of investors for this type of facility in the region of Southeast Europe is significantly increasing, and it was the only real estate sector that by the end of 2020 recorded an increase in investment by as much as 385%, worth 75 million euros.
INDUSTRIAL PARK – THE CONCEPT OF THE FUTURE
What speaks to the importance of industrial parks is the fact that their concept has served as a model for creating new platforms, such as agro-industrial parks, technology or science parks, innovation districts and eco-industrial parks. This speaks to the possibility of adapting this concept to different conditions, such as the increasingly complex world economy and the need for new production processes and structures. Industrial parks easily respond to new market demands, they are advancing and becoming an integral part of industrial development and beyond.