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Mass entrepreneurship and innovation booming in high-tech zones

Updated: Aug 29,2016 3:21 PM

The number of newly registered enterprises within national high-tech zones in 2015 alone surpassed 190,000, which shows that the spirit of entrepreneurship and innovation has been fully carried out, said Zhang Zhihong, director of the Torch High Technology Industry Development Center under the Ministry of Science and Technology.

“Through 20 years’ development, the number of national high-tech zones has reached 146, which have become an important engine for innovation-driven development as well as the upgrading and transformation of China’s economy,” Zhang said during a press conference focused on independent innovation demonstration zones in China.

Zhang also said that dynamics in the high-tech zones featuring “newly emerged products, technologies and industries” stimulated a new economic growth impetus.

Zhang further elaborated that the national high-tech zones have gathered 1,031 science and technology enterprise incubators, 52 national university sci-tech parks and 80 percent of makerspaces registered with the Ministry of Science and Technology, which forms a complete innovation incubator chain for startups.

In terms of major entrepreneurship models, “angel investments, partnership and crowd funding” are gaining momentum in our national high-tech zones, Zhang added.

Angel investment is when an individual provides capital for a business startup, in exchange for convertible debt or ownership equity, while crowd funding represents a project or venture funded by raising monetary contributions from a large number of people.

Speaking about the investment environment for startups, Zhang said that high-tech zones have also gathered a bunch of venture capital institutions, and investment and financing service platforms that are attractive to angel investments and venture capital.

Zhang added that national high-tech zones should further develop more specialized makerspaces with abundant dynamics, varied carriers, enhanced services and open innovation resources to improve their innovation capacity and competitiveness, as part of the country’s efforts to become an innovation powerhouse by 2020.