Driven by the drive for technological innovation and rapid growth in demand, China's high-tech industry has shown rapid development in recent years. From 2000 to 2015, its added value increased from 3.16 percent to 29.08 percent of the world volume, surpassing the US (28.94 percent). China has become the world's largest high-tech industrial country. In 2014, the added value of the high-tech industry in China was basically the same as that of the US, and four times higher than that of Japan and Germany. In 2017, the national high-tech industry increased by 13.4 percent, accounting for 12.7 percent of the added value of industries above designated size.
According to statistics from China’s Ministry of Commerce, the introduction of foreign funds in the high-tech industry in 2016 accounted for 19.33 percent of total investment. Since 2013, the average annual increase of foreign investment in the industry has increased by 10.97 percent, and the number of foreign-invested R&D centers now exceeds 2,400.
China has the largest advantages in electronics and communications equipment manufacturing, and computer and office equipment manufacturing. Both belong to the information and communication technology (ICT) industry.
China's high-tech industry has made remarkable progress in innovation and has many advantages in its effort to become bigger and stronger.
First, China has initially formed a complete industrial system with many facilities and huge capacity. A group of leading innovative enterprises has also been established. For example, China has a number of industrial clusters in the manufacturing of mobile phones and computers, with strong supporting capacity and a large group of skilled workers. This advantage is difficult for other countries to catch up with in the short term.
Second, important breakthroughs have been made in key technologies. China currently has a number of technologies and products with independent intellectual property rights in the fields of chips and operating systems, and scale applications in fields such as national defense and the military industry has been realized. China has a sound foundation for accelerating the development of the high-tech industry.
Third, the scale and potential for development of the domestic market are huge. China can rely on large domestic demand to promote the R&D and industrialization of core technologies; this advantage is not available in other countries. In the coming period, as the Chinese economy shifts to a high-quality development stage and the people’s living standards continue to rise, the demand for high-tech products such as artificial intelligence and bio-medicine will surge significantly. The huge potential of domestic demand will continue to be released and the high-tech industry will continue to develop rapidly.
The Chinese government has vigorously promoted the innovation-driven economic growth model and launched a series of measures to encourage foreign investment in high-tech industries. These measures include the easing of restrictions on foreign investment access and simplification of procedures for foreign investment entry approval, which provide active guidance for investment in the high-tech industry.