Shenzhen is a city born to innovate. The first stock in China was issued in Shenzhen, and the first land auction in the country was held in Shenzhen as well. Since the city became a special economic zone, it has played a role as an innovator to spread new ideas and a pioneer to explore the path of reform and opening up in China. By issuing local rules of national innovation demonstration zone and rolling out 10 projects to bolster innovation, Shenzhen has become a frontrunner in promoting innovation-driven development when China’s economy steps into the new normal. Shenzhen is now widely known as a “City of Makers” and a “City of Innovation.”
Shenzhen aims to beef up the new economy. The city has rolled out plans to speed up the high-quality development of high-tech industries and the development of strategic emerging industries. It has set up a 5-billion-yuan fund to guide angel investments and invested more than 100 billion yuan in R&D. The total number of State-level high-tech enterprises is expected to surpass 14,000, with an increase of over 3,000 such companies in 2018. The added value of strategic emerging industries grew by 9.1 percent. Shenzhen has been approved to build a demonstration zone for marine economic development.
Shenzhen strives to boost its independent innovation capability. The city has formulated plans to strengthen basic research and tackle key technical problems of 10 key components such as chips and medical devices. It has launched major scientific and technological infrastructures such as synthetic biology research, brain analysis and brain simulation, and initiated the construction of a State-level key laboratory of oncology chemical genomics. It has set up 10 new basic research institutes and added 189 new innovation platforms. The city won 16 national science and technology awards and four national patent gold awards in 2018. Patent licensing increased by 48.8 percent. The contribution of scientific and technological progress to economic growth has been further enhanced.
Shenzhen continuously optimizes its innovation environment. The China (Shenzhen) Intellectual Property Protection Center was officially opened in 2018. The city has rolled out a slew of talent policies and established a State-level human resources service industry park. Throughout the year, 285,000 professional talents, 12 full-time academicians and 2,678 high-level talents were introduced, up 8.4 percent, 41 percent and 59 percent, respectively.