Measures proposed to encourage innovation
China will provide greater fiscal support and better protection of intellectual property rights to encourage its leading tech firms to step up research, an official with the country's top industry regulator said on Friday.
Wang Zhijun, vice-minister of industry and information technology, said at a news briefing that it is imperative that China's manufacturing sector focus on groundbreaking research in core technologies and speed up efforts to fill gaps and strengthen areas of weaknesses. Wang made the remarks in response to reports that some Chinese high-tech companies, including Huawei Technologies Co and Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Co, are facing restrictive measures from the United States on technology supply.
"To solve the problem of weaknesses in core technologies, it is crucial to enable businesses to play a major role and pursue innovation-driven growth," he said.
Authorities will encourage businesses to focus on breakthroughs in key generic technologies, leading technologies and modern engineering technologies, he said.
He also highlighted the significance of stepping up strategic guidance at a national level to enable innovation to flow into the research of core technologies and create a fair market environment.
An intellectual property rights protection mechanism featuring quick ownership affirmation and rights protection will also be established for areas related to core technologies to enable better protection, he added.
China's spending on science and research reached nearly 2 trillion yuan ($290 billion) last year, accounting for 2.18 percent of its GDP, up 11.6 percent from 2017, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.
Yang Weiwu, an official with the Department of Research Commercialization and Regional Innovation under the Ministry of Science and Technology, said close to 80 percent of the country's total spending on science and research came from enterprises.
"However, it is a lengthy process of accumulation for scientific innovation," he said.
The ministry will step up support for private tech businesses with more measures to guide the growth of incubators and accelerate the commercialization of research outcomes, he said, adding that more tax cuts will also be made available to small and medium-sized enterprises in the tech sector.
Private businesses will also receive support in building key labs and engineering technology research centers at a national level to boost their innovation capacities, he said.