Free Trade Zones

AI Innovation Zones in China: Alternatives for Overseas Traders


Over the previous 5 years, China has constantly prioritized its efforts to change into the world’s first synthetic intelligence (AI) superpower. This contains methods like Made in China 2025 and the Digital Silk Street, the place China is ready to mix and direct a number of assets in direction of the expansion and growth of the AI ​​{industry}, corresponding to the inducement of expertise, the event of an R&D ecosystem, the era of capital , the creation of a high-tech provide chain and the encouragement of overseas funding in sure industries.

China additionally intends to arrange AI innovation zones the place particular applied sciences are developed in response to the traits of the town, which can complement the technique adopted on the nationwide stage for the zone the place the town is positioned ( just like the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei growth technique, for instance).

New AI innovation zones in China

On February 20, 2021, the Ministry of Trade and Data Expertise (MIIT) issued a round to help the creation of 5 new AI innovation zones. This can deliver the whole to eight, as three of those zones are at the moment positioned in Shanghai (Pudong New Zone), Shenzhen and Jinan-Qingdao.

New AI innovation areas embrace Beijing, Tianjin (Binhai New District), Hangzhou, Guangzhou, and Chengdu. Every of them shall be constructed to pursue a particular goal, because the MIIT round straight explains.

Incentives and Related Laws Impacting Overseas Traders in China’s AI Trade

  • Encouraging catalogs 2020

In response to Catalog of industries to encourage overseas funding, from January 27, 2021, overseas investments within the AI ​​sector are inspired on the nationwide stage (“Nationwide Catalog”) in addition to on the regional stage (“Regional Catalog”). Overseas traders will profit from favorable insurance policies, corresponding to tariff exemptions on imported gear, entry to preferential land costs, extra versatile land use laws and decrease company taxes. Learn extra: China Expands Inspired Catalog and Improves Entry for Overseas Traders (

The Chengdu AI Innovation Zone, positioned in Sichuan Province, shall be regulated by the Catalog of industries inspired within the Western areas (2020 version), to be carried out from March 1, 2021. Discover out extra: Investing within the western provinces of China: the brand new catalog inspired (

  • Nationwide Safety Evaluation and Export Management Legislation

On December 19, 2020, the Nationwide Improvement and Reform Fee (NDRC) and the Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) collectively issued the Overseas Funding Safety Evaluation Measures (“Measures”), as of January 18, 2021.

These measures apply to overseas funding all through China, together with the pilot free commerce zones, and stipulate {that a} labor workplace established beneath the NDRC, however headed by each the NDRC and MOFCOM , shall be chargeable for the nationwide safety overview of overseas funding.

The measures are unclear as to what may set off the nationwide safety overview and don’t outline exactly which “key” areas of funding could fall beneath this management. Nevertheless, given the kind of sectors talked about by the measures which embrace, amongst others, know-how, info know-how, web services – in addition to the restrictions launched by the Export Management Legislation – investments Aliens in AI will seemingly be topic to the safety overview.


On July 20, 2017, the Chinese language State Council issued the Opinion of the Council of State on the publication of the event plan for the brand new era of synthetic intelligence (hereinafter, Discover) establishing a high-level design plan outlining the nation’s strategy to the event of AI know-how and purposes, setting basic targets till 2030.

This overview famous how AI has change into a brand new engine of financial growth in addition to a brand new middle of worldwide competitors, probably involving a broad department of IT and constructing machines able to performing duties that sometimes require human intelligence. .

Speedy progress creates alternatives on the border

For the reason that publication of the 2017 opinion and the implementation of different plans, corresponding to Web Plus, made in China 2025, next-generation synthetic intelligence growth plan, numerous well timed measures have been launched to boost the event of AI applied sciences and encourage industry-specific technological innovation.

China has emerged as a world chief in AI publications and patents, and intends to change into a frontrunner in AI-based companies, corresponding to speech and picture recognition purposes.

An fascinating facet of the sector is that any progress made makes it potential to additional enhance the best way AI works: in contrast to pc {hardware}, AI is an open science and, in consequence, lots of the important algorithms within the discipline are well-known. public. Through the use of know-how, customers generate knowledge and thru machine studying capabilities, merchandise are continually improved.

Contemplating China’s mature market, the momentum in direction of analysis and industrial purposes, and a big inhabitants base, it’s no exaggeration to imagine that as AI applied sciences quickly evolve, they are going to profit native and overseas companies. Subsequently, overseas firms able to offering AI-related information and know-how could really feel that now could be the suitable time to hunt enterprise alternatives on this “ inspired ” {industry}.

About Us

China Briefing is written and produced by Dezan Shira and associates. The observe assists overseas traders in China and has achieved so since 1992 by way of places of work in Beijing, Tianjin, Dalian, Qingdao, Shanghai, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Suzhou, Guangzhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Shenzhen, and Hong Kong. Please contact the corporate for help in China at [email protected]

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