China's Go West Policy: Implications for the access control industry

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by Zen Li

Recently, I reached out to physical access control integrators, system installers and end customers...

...through a few roadshows and exhibitions in Xinjiang, Northwest China. I was amazed by the rapid development in Xinjiang; however, I also saw a lot of room for improvement as well as growth opportunities for access control systems in the region.

China has had its "Go West" policy in place for more than 10 years, with the main components of the strategy being the development of infrastructure, enticement of foreign investment, increased efforts towards ecological protection (such as reforestation), promotion of education and retention of talent that is otherwise moving to richer provinces.

How does "Go West" impact the access control industry?
Fortune 500 company Sinopec and other utility companies such as PetroChina and China Huaneng Corporation have responded by heavily investing in Xinjiang in Northwest China, which has boosted the economy in the area. However, the region still lags far behind East China in adopting advanced access control systems. With the region's lack of awareness around security and slow technological development, many enterprises are still using legacy access control systems or basic security measures such as keys and locks, security gates and guards for high security areas.

In addition, offices and factory sites in Xinjiang are typically in remote locations with local infrastructure and limited management staff...such conditions for which a centralized, integrated access control platform for strict and staff management would be ideal.

While HID Global open architecture IP-based access control solution is the perfect solution to fit the needs of organizations in Xinjiang, these companies face challenges in upgrading their access control systems since local technicians have limited knowledge of new technologies and system maintenance. To begin addressing this issue, HID has hosted roadshows in Xinjiang to provide local technicians hands-on training on high frequency and IP-based access control solutions with the goal of equipping them with the skills needed to support future installations and maintenance.

Xinjiang and Northwest China as a whole is becoming one of the key growth engines for access control industry in the region, and these seminars are part of our ongoing initiative to align our business to the opportunities by providing flexible, feature-rich solutions coupled with proactive support. Looking at the enormous opportunities for growth, I am excited by what the future holds for HID Global in Northwest China and the entire region in the months and year to come.