Minhang pledges to promote opening-up, sci-tech innovation
Shanghai's Minhang District will continue to promote opening-up and science and technology innovation for higher-quality development, district authorities pledged on Thursday.
Minhang, geographically located in the center of Shanghai, is a hub that connects the city with other places in the Yangtze River Delta region and the rest of the world, which welcomes talent and investors from all over the world, according to Chen Yujian, Party chief of the district.
Its north area is home to a core area of the Hongqiao International Open Hub, which is regarded as an international business center, a transportation hub and a key link between domestic and international market circulations.
"We have accelerated the opening-up with 16 national policies and 10 city-level policies being implemented, such as relaxing access to foreign investment, establishing free trade accounts, and streamlining application of permanent residence for foreign talent," Chen said.
"We've also established platforms such as the Hongqiao Import Commodities Expo and Trade Center, the Hongqiao International Talent Port, and the Hongqiao International Central Legal Service Hub, which have gathered more than 600 trade enterprises, 155 talent service companies and 52 legal firms. The New Hongqiao International Medical Center is also developing with five hospitals already built and put into operation."
Chen pointed out that Minhang has also focused on the development of the "headquarters economy," with more than 240 enterprises having setting up headquarters in the Minhang area of the Hongqiao International Central Business District, including 65 regional headquarters of transnational companies. It's also home to 87 research and development centers and 51 public listed companies.
With two prestigious universities – Shanghai Jiao Tong University and East China Normal University, more than 10 research institutions in the aerospace, aviation and shipping fields, as well as over 440 R&D organizations, Minhang has taken innovation as the main engine of its development.
It's now promoting the construction of the Grand neoBay Sci-tech Innovation Park in its southern area, which became a city strategy in February, according to Chen.
"We've set up a management committee and a special fund for the park, as well as funds for cooperation between the district government and universities to support their basic research, attract talent and transfer research findings into application," he noted.
"We have so far established 740,000 square meters of innovation zones, including mass innovation spaces, incubators, university science parks and tech innovation zones, as well as more than 3,000 tech firms."
The district is also promoting the development of a medical robot research institute, an artificial intelligence research institute and the Shanghai International Technology Exchange Market.
It has joined hands with tech giant Huawei to launch the Mindspore AI Framework Innovation Center, and plans to build a future industrial park featuring industries of future energy and intelligent robots with Shanghai Jiao Tong University.
With all these efforts, in the first half of the year, Minhang posted 18.14 billion yuan (US$2.5 billion) in fiscal revenue, an increase of 24.5 percent year-on-year, Chen revealed, adding that the district will continue to take the Hongqiao International CBD and the Grand neoBay Innovation Park as its core driving forces for high-quality development.
"We will push the opening-up to a new level with more favorable policies, improved services in cross-border trade, offshore trade and transnational investment, and increased supply of high-level medical services," he stated.
He further said that Minhang will build its north part into an international business center and a cluster of headquarters for private enterprises, introducing more functional platforms and organizations for trade, talent service, legal service and finance.
"We hope it will become a hall for international enterprises to enter the Chinese market, a boarding gate for Chinese enterprises to explore the international market and a pivot to enhance the digital Silk Road cooperation."
In the south, the district will continue to promote cooperation with universities and industrial parks to enhance science innovation.
It will improve its incubation system and boost financial support for science and technology innovation with the establishment of the neoBay venture capital fund and neoBay finance harbor.
Minhang will further promote its industrial transformation and upgrading, targeting high-end, intelligent and green industries. It will mainly focus on new-generation information technology, biomedicine, integrated circuits and high-end equipment, as well as aerospace, new energy, gene technology, quantum technology and the digital economy.
The district will also continue to improve the livelihood of residents, renovating more old neighborhoods as well as building more quality schools, medical institutions and cultural and sports facilities.