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Nansha on track to ride technological boom

By CHEN HONG (China Daily) Update:2022-12-08

The second"1" refers to the Southern Marine Science and Engineering Guangdong Laboratory (Guangzhou). With 55 top scientific teams in the fields of marine research led by 16 academicians and more than 1,000 scientists and researchers, it will have its core part of the complex completed by the end of this year, while its marine research base is expected to be upgraded as a State-level lab.

The "3" refers to the three major scientific and technological infrastructure facilities in the science city — cold seeps, unmanned marine scientific research and wind tunnel research. They mark a breakthrough in the district's development of large-scale scientific facilities and are expected to put the district in an advantageous position in marine research and aviation and aerospace industrial development.

The "N" refers to various innovation platforms in Nansha. They consist of 22 high-level scientific research institutes including those jointly launched by the Chinese Academy of Sciences or Shanghai-based Fudan University, as well as 353 innovation platforms including a national engineering research center for nature gas hydrate, one of three nationwide in 2021, which began construction in July.

Supportive policies

Putting talent attraction on top of the agenda, the district government of Nansha has stipulated a number of policies to lure unicorn companies and talents and help to boost its key industries, especially in semiconductor and integrated circuits, the metaverse and commercial aerospace.

Among the 10 measures to support innovation issued by the district government, high-level talent could get a housing allowance up to 10 million yuan ($1.41 million).

The new policy also allocates up to 100 million yuan to top-level teams working on the strategic industries of Nansha and to the new-type R&D institutes, 200 million yuan to each major innovation platform.


Business representatives attend the opening ceremony of the metaverse alliance on March 25. CHINA DAILY

For companies specializing in the commercial aerospace industry that carry out research in the new areas of rockets and satellites or focus on the research or commercialization of the products that are essential to the industry, the local government will subsidize 20 percent of the R&D costs spent in the previous year, with the amount totaling up to 100 million yuan a year, according to the government policies.

As a result, 36 academicians and 17,000 top-level team leaders or professionals are working in Nansha, which has five academician research stations and 24 platforms for postdoctoral researchers, the latest statistics of the district government showed.

There are a total of 744 high-tech companies in Nansha, including a group of leading players in the industry of the metaverse that founded an industrial alliance. Twenty-five companies were selected as innovative unicorns of Guangzhou in 2022, including Cloudwalk, Pony.ai and Guangdong Aofei Data Technology.

World-class bay areas always coexist with world-class universities, said Lionel M. Ni, president of HKUST (GZ), so HKUST (GZ) and Nansha will hopefully take the same road that has proved to be successful. He said that in five years, the entrepreneurial ecology in the Qingsheng area, where the university is located, will boom, and the area, in the shape of Silicon Valley, will flourish.

Guan Chenghua, president and professor at the Center for Innovation and Development Studies of Beijing Normal University, said Nansha can be an important base for the transformation of the achievements from Hong Kong and Macao by combining the advantages from its manufacturing neighbors of Foshan and Dongguan with the strong innovation capabilities of the universities in Hong Kong and Macao.