SCIO briefing on the 'new normal' in the Chinese economy and deepening supply-side structural reform

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Xu Shaoshi, minister of the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC)

Hu Kaihong, director-general of the Press Bureau, State Council Information Office

Jan. 10, 2017

China National Radio (CNR):

In recent years, China has been cultivating new engines of growth to promote the country's "mass innovation and entrepreneurship" drive. My questions are: What progress did we make in the development in 2016? How to evaluate their role in economic growth? Do we have any considerations for the future work in this regard? Thank you.

Xu Shaoshi:

The "mass innovation and entrepreneurship" drive has indeed enjoyed vigorous development in the in-depth implementation of the country's strategy of innovation-driven development. It has played a positive role in cultivating new engines to drive growth and promoting the transformation and upgrading of traditional industries. The positive role is mainly manifested in the following three aspects.

First, the innovation-driven industry is moving towards the high-end, with a number of major and well-known scientific and technological achievements accomplished. In his 2017 New Year speech, President Xi Jinping spoke of some remarkable breakthroughs in the country, such as the Chinese "sky-eye" single-aperture spherical telescope now operating in Guizhou Province.

Moreover, China's new supercomputing system, Sunway-Taihu Light, was named the world's fastest computer. The Shenzhou-11 manned spaceship and the Tiangong-2 space lab successfully docked. China's newest and largest submersible ship is capable of diving to a depth of over 10,000 meters. Two of China's landmark achievements, high-speed railways and nuclear power, have also made new progress.

Other new technologies, such as artificial intelligence and virtual reality, enjoy a rapid development. The model of a sharing economy has been widely infiltrating and extending from life resources to means of production. We all have our personal experiences in this regard.

Second, new industries take the lead in the innovation-driven development. In the first 11 months of last year, the added value of the high-tech manufacturing industry and innovation industry grew at an annualized rate of 10.6 percent and 10.87 percent respectively. Furthermore, the development of the high-tech manufacturing industry and innovation-driven industry injects new vitality into the whole industrial chain.

Third, innovation and entrepreneurship are promoted. Last year, we established 28 innovation and entrepreneurship demonstration bases. The comprehensive innovation and reform experiment also made breakthroughs. The guiding venture capital investment for new industries has already gone into operation.

The magazine Global Entrepreneurship Monitor made an assessment of China's innovation and entrepreneurship, claiming that China's early entrepreneurial activity index, at 12.84, leads the world's major economies.

The quantity and quality of innovation and entrepreneurship market entities have improved. In the first 11 months of last year, the number of newly registered market entities exceeded 15 million, an increase of 14 percent over the same period of 2015. Enterprises and research institutions formed the main force among market entities, with their venture investment steadily increasing.

The amount of capital raised in the first 11 months of 2016 was 1.73 times that of 2015. The "mass innovation and entrepreneurship" drive has hastened the birth of a large number of high-quality enterprises and also accelerated the commercialization of R&D achievements.

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