Business / Economy

8 regions selected as innovation zones

By Lan Lan (China Daily) Updated: 2015-09-16 10:18

China aims to build a long-term mechanism that could spur innovation and drive economic growth.

The State Council has chosen eight regions, including the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei cluster, Shanghai, and Guangdong province as pilot zones to carry out trials on innovation and reform.

Li Pumin, spokesman for the National Development and Reform Commission, told a news conference on Tuesday that these regions have been asked to map out detailed proposals for innovation reform in the fourth quarter.

The regions have been tasked with building a long-term mechanism for promoting innovation and making breakthroughs in promoting fair competition, intellectual property, scientific achievement and financial innovation, Li said.

Experiments will be carried out in these regions in 2016, while the NDRC and the Ministry of Science and Technology will evaluate the performance. Successful measures will be duplicated or promoted nationwide, said Li.

China's economic growth will become more reliant on human skills and technology, as well as on improving productivity and resource allocation. However, in the short term, investment will continue to play the most crucial role, experts said.

Maintaining steady growth and promoting investment remain the focus this year against the backdrop of increasing downward economic pressure, Xu Shaoshi, chairman of the NDRC, said on Monday at a video conference.

Measures taken by the government for promoting investment have taken effect. In the first eight months of the year, infrastructure investment grew by 18.4 percent year-on-year, more than 7 percentage points higher than overall investment growth.

Lin Boqiang, director of the China Center for Energy Economics Research at Xiamen University, said the recovery remains weak.

"Investment remains the most effective tool in cushioning the slowdown, but we need to nurture drivers for future growth by spurring innovation," said Lin.

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