Suzhou is located in China' s economic epicenter，Due to this proximity, Suzhou is a city full of market opportunities for foreign investors coming to China and remains one of the nation' s key economic focal points. Suzhou has the largest local economy in Jiangsu, accounting for 19.6% of the Province' s total GDP. Suzhou Municipality consists of three cities; Changshu, Zhangjiagang and Kunshan.
As with most major Eastern Chinese cities, Suzhou has experienced a sustained period of double-digit economic growth. In 2006, local GDP reached 482.03 billion RMB, up 15.5% from the previous year. The value added output of the city' s tertiary industries realized volume of 157.4 billion RMB and the contribution ratio of the tertiary sector to total GDP increased more than 1.5% over the previous year. Perhaps the city' s greatest economic claim to fame is that Suzhou' s GDP per capita exceeds US$10,000, ranking first in the nation; no small feat in a country that is currently the world’s hottest marketplace.
The city' s main strategic industry is telecommunications, IT and electronics, which exceeded 400 billion RMB in sales revenue in 2006 – representing 12.3% of all the revenue from these sectors across China in that year. Other strategic industries in the city' s diverse manufacturing base are textiles, chemicals, and metallurgy, reflecting the city' s industrial orientation towards high-tech and export-oriented industries. The list of the city' s manufacturers reads like a Fortune Global 500 honor roll, with names like Dow Chemical, Dupont, Chevron, Mobil, Motorola, Philips, Sony and many more. Suzhou' s success in attracting investors of this caliber is partly due to the Suzhou government' s glittering reputation for efficiency, and partly to the preferential policies offered to encourage investment. Most industrial activity is concentrated in the city' s key economic and industrial zones: in fact the strategic vision for the city is as ''one body with two wings'': the body being the ancient center and the wings being satellite developments centered on industrial zones. The primary zones are Suzhou Industrial Park (a joint China-Singapore project), the Suzhou National New & Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone, and the Kunshan Economic and Technological Development Zone.
The Southern Jiangsu Economic Model is the term used to describe the overall development of three of Jiangsu' s main urban centers including Suzhou, Wuxi and Changzhou. These days, foreign investment and international trade are playing an important role in Suzhou' s economy and the city once mostly known for its canals, bridges and tranquil gardens is now embarking upon two major strategic initiatives; to promote the city as a ''leading FDI destination'' and a '' base for new and hi-tech industries.'' This will no doubt be facilitated by the presence in Suzhou of a highly-educated labor force and aggressive policies to attract and retain premium talent.