The Greater Bay Area plan, which was released by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CCCPC) on Monday highlight the integration of Macau and Hong Kong into mainland China's innovation system, among other areas.
By 2035, the region would have developed an economic system largely driven by innovation.
Authorities will expand and upgrade airports in the four key cities and accelerate construction of large-scale oil reserves bases in the Pearl River Delta area, Xinhua said.
The Greater Bay Area, covering an area of 56,000 square kilometres, will encompass the cities of Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Jiangmen, Zhaoqing and the special administrative regions of Macau and Hong Kong.
But if Hong Kong does not seize the chance, its boat will sail, Lam added, citing a Cantonese aphorism that Xi has deployed to exhort Hong Kong to collaborate with, rather than resist, the mainland. The event will be attended by officials from China's National Development and Reform Commission as well as the leaders of Guangdong and Macau.
The mature capital market in Hong Kong will also provide cash-starved tech firms on the Chinese mainland with various financing channels.
The document, which consists of 11 chapters, also touched on a wide range of goals and directions to push forward the development of the city cluster, such as improving infrastructural connectivity and quality of life, building a globally competitive commerce and industrial system, protecting the environment, and energy security, as well as supporting China's worldwide trade strategy known as the "Belt and Road Initiative".
Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam welcomed the strategic blueprint and thanked the central government "for placing importance on the views of the Hong Kong government".
The blueprint's failure to delineate clearly how Hong Kong's status will be protected suggests either that the Bay Area plan is more hype than practical programme, or that political objectives will trump economic considerations.
With an overall aim to promote the generally free flow of information, of people, as well as of goods in the GBA, the Outline Development Plan (Outline Plan) is first of all a plan for cooperation between component cities.
"[It will] enable compatriots from Hong Kong and Macau to share the historic responsibility of national rejuvenation. and the prosperity of the motherland", it sid.
While what exactly each member within the bay area will do has yet to be announced, Hong Kong is expected to leverage on its niche as an global financial and arbitration center, and to be the center of the southern aviation hub, in addition to helping the nation make technology breakthroughs. "Hong Kong is not the top dog in the Greater Bay Area, but it is still one of the four core cities".
Under the blueprint, the major cities of the Greater Bay Area will establish themselves as hubs for different sectors.
Pro-democracy group Demosisto said the changes were an attempt to make it easier for China to "entrap" Hong Kong citizens who raised their voices in dissent against Beijing's policies. The cities have their own, freely convertible currencies, separate passport and customs controls, and legal systems.
Yeung said the plan's insistence on cutting-edge technology as part of the region's economic integration could heighten such concerns in the eyes of members of the U.S. Congress. "It's not clear in the outline", he said.