Innovation Drives Guangdong's High-quality Development
By GONG Guoping
As the south gate of China and the starting point of Maritime Silk Road, Guangdong has long been one of the most open, dynamic and innovative regions in China.
The province has actively participated in international cooperation and competition over the past 40-plus years of reform and opening up, and its GDP has ranked No.1 among China's provinces for 32 consecutive years.
Driven by sci-tech innovation, the province has topped China's Regional Innovation Capability Rank for four consecutive years. Innovation has become the primary driving force for Guangdong's high-quality development.
During the 14th Five-Year Plan period (2021-2025), Guangdong is going to embrace the building of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) and make sci-tech self-reliance and self-strengthening as a strategic support, in order to be an international sci-tech and industrial innovation center. By 2025, it will have initially established a technological and industrial innovation highland with global influence.
Canton Tower, at the south bank of the Pearl River, is the landmark of Guangzhou city.
To play good the first move of sci-tech innovation for Guangdong, one of the important focuses is to strengthen the layout of strategic sci-tech power, and to develop an elite force of science and technology capabilities.
In recent years, 10 provincial laboratories have been built in batches in Guangdong. Up to date, it has 30 state key labs, 430 provincial key labs, 21 high-level innovation institutes, and 20 Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao joint labs.
Behind these numbers are the province's optimized lab building system and talent introduction system, as well as the continuous system and mechanism innovation.
To make the most of the siphon effect of talent introduction and talent accumulation from major innovation platforms, Guangdong is accelerating the layout of major sci-tech infrastructure clusters and is building an array of national major innovation platforms.
It is also accelerating the construction of big-science facilities, such as Phase II of China Spallation Neutron Source project in Dongguan, Jiangmen Underground Neutrino Observatory, and High Intensity Heavy-ion Accelerator Facility in Huizhou.
To play good the first move, another important focus is to explore Guangdong's path to achieving breakthroughs of key core technologies. Focusing on the bottlenecks, it has continuously implemented research and development plans in key fields of the province.
By March this year, Guangdong's financial expenditure on "First Move" projects, such as quantum communication, core chips, and 5G, has amounted to 7.1 billion RMB, driving social investment of more than 15 billion RMB.
Next, Guangdong is to carry out a new round of Three-Year R&D planning in key fields of the province, and to implement national key R&D projects, such as the project of novel display and strategic electronic materials.
Meanwhile, the province attaches great importance to the role of enterprises as the main body of innovation, promoting high tech enterprises to improve development quality and supporting various sized enterprises to integrate and innovate.
To create a favorable ecological environment for innovation, Guangdong is doing its utmost to satisfy talents near and far, win their hearts and minds, and retain their valuable skills.
Talent is the first resource for Guangdong's high-quality development. Striving to build an international sci-tech innovation hub, the province will implement a more open talent policy to attract talents, encourage innovation, and incubate a comprehensive talent pool.
Aiming to create a virtuous cycle between industries and talents, Guangdong will focus on industrial chains to build talent chains, specifically in ten pillar industry clusters and ten emerging industry clusters.
At the starting point of a new era, Guangdong will take the building of GBA into an international sci-tech innovation center as the key link, continue to improve sci-tech innovation systems and mechanisms, strive to make breakthroughs in key core technologies, and leverage the strength of sci-tech innovation and institutional innovation, so as to provide strategic support for the province's social and economic high-quality development.
Foreign experts and talents have always been an important part of Guangdong's innovation system. We sincerely welcome talents from home and abroad to Guangdong for innovation and entrepreneurship to build a better future together.
Gong Guoping is Secretary of the Leading Party Group and Director of Department of Science and Technology of Guangdong Province.