In 2016, Premier Li Keqiang attached great importance to “mass entrepreneurship and innovation”, and it became a key word in government policies.
The policies released in 2016 strove to create a better environment for enterprises and individuals to forge ahead in pursuing entrepreneurship and innovation, with the goal of further stimulating new vitality into the economy.
Expand tax credits on R&D
Starting in 2016, most enterprises were able to enjoy tax exemptions for new technology and products, as part of an effort to encourage research and development (R&D) efforts.
Besides new equipment and facilities, R&D related production costs and extra labor costs are now also on the tax deduction list for R&D enterprises.
Further eliminate tech bottlenecks
The Ministry of Science and Technology published detailed rules to implement a revision of the Law on Transformation of Scientific and Technological Achievements.
The new policy will further eliminate tech bottlenecks and stimulate researchers to transfer sci-tech achievements.
In the past, a research institute had to get approval from the Ministry of Education if they sold technology for more than 5 million yuan ($765,000), and from the Ministry of Finance if it exceeded 8 million yuan.
Turning science into productivity
To accelerate the innovation-driven development strategy, the State Council issued a document on March 1 to ensure implementation of the law promoting the transformation of scientific and technological achievements into real productive forces.
Research and development institutions and universities should get input from their staff members before making decisions on an income distribution system concerning the transformation of scientific and technological achievements, and related regulations should also be published by the organizations, said the document.
Promote startup investments
The State Council issued a circular on Sept 20 on promoting the sustainable development of startup investments, as part of an effort to advance mass entrepreneurship and innovation in China.
The circular decided to encourage multiple investors to set up venture capital enterprises or channel money into startups. The investors include investment agencies that have rich resources in entrepreneurship and innovation, such as leading enterprises, business incubators and insurance asset management institutions.
State Council to boost makerspaces
The State Council on Feb 18 issued a document on speeding up the development of makerspaces, which have flourished throughout the country, in a bid to support economic restructuring and industrial upgrade.
The policy is aimed at connecting makerspaces, the forefront of mass entrepreneurship and innovation, with other development plans such as “Internet Plus” and “Made in China 2025”, to spur the reform of leading enterprises in research, production, marketing, services and management, as well as the development of the smart “manufacturing plus services” model.
Scientific and technological innovation boost
The State Council issued a national scientific and technological innovation plan in a bid to build China into an innovative country and a scientific and technological powerhouse.
The country should support Beijing and Shanghai in building scientific and technological innovation centers with international clout, set up a batch of innovative provinces and cities and regional innovation centers, promote the innovative development of national innovation demonstration zones as well as new and hi-tech development zones, according to the plan.
Innovation demonstration bases
The State Council issued a circular on May 12 to promote building mass entrepreneurship and innovation demonstration bases.
According to the circular, a total of 28 demonstration bases will be built first and are scheduled to be completed by 2018, which will help cultivate platforms to support mass entrepreneurship and innovation.
Transformation of offline retail sector
The State Council released a circular to promote the innovative transformation of the offline retail sector, in a bid to alleviate pressures from mounting operation costs and threat from thriving online retailers.
The document set up nine major tasks in the sector’s innovative transformation, from the perspective of adjusting commercial structure, innovating development mode, and promoting cross-sector integration.
Big data in health and medical sectors
On June 23, the State Council issued a circular regarding the application and development of big data in the health and medical sectors.
The move is set to achieve cross-sector and cross-regional data resource sharing in the country.
National and provincial population health information platforms will be built, and application platforms for national medicine bidding and purchasing will be interconnected by the end of 2017, according to the circular.
Internet Plus services will make life easier
On April 26, the State Council issued a circular regarding tests for further promotion of “Internet Plus administrative services” to benefit people through information sharing among government departments.
Over the next two years, the tests will be implemented in 80 cities. Inter-provincial digital license exchange and online identity verification system will be fully applied in 2017, reaching the “one number, one window, and one network” target that covers more than 80 percent of basic public services, according to the State Council.