Editor’s note: In this column we introduce phrases used every day in the media and by the Chinese government, thereby providing a succinct overview of China’s political thinking, its policies and ongoing reforms and transitions.






The innovation-driven development strategy


China’s innovation-driven development strategy aims to encourage innovation in all areas, particularly scientific and technological innovation. Innovation should be demand-driven in response to the needs of industrialization. Businesses are major players in delivering innovation, and the market should play the decisive role in allocating resources. The full potential of our socialist system should be explored. The strategy seeks to enhance the contribution of scientific and technological advances to economic growth, which will serve as a new impetus for growth and help sustain sound economic development.


The main measures to be taken include creating a favorable environment for fair competition and a market-based mechanism that encourages technological innovation. It is also essential to promote financial innovation to provide more incentives for innovative uses of technology. Another area of focus is building a more efficient scientific research system, and implementing an effective talent management mechanism for training and attracting competent personnel. A highly integrated approach is necessary to ensure an open, innovation-friendly climate. By 2020 China seeks to have in place an institutional, legal and policy framework for innovation-driven development, creating the conditions necessary for China to become one of the world’s most innovative countries.






Emerging industries of strategic importance


Emerging industries of strategic importance are those that have considerable market potential, can drive the economy and create more jobs, and are cost-effective. They include energy conservation and environmental protection, new-generation information technology, high-end equipment manufacturing, integrated circuits, the Internet of Things, advanced manufacturing, new energy, new-generation mobile communications, and big data.


China will step up efforts to foster the growth of these industries in response to new challenges in a competitive world. An innovative value chain will be created linking core technologies, strategic products, and engineering expertise and capacity and large-scaled applications. The scope of industrial development will be expanded, with new possibilities for businesses to sharpen their competitive edge.






Widespread entrepreneurship and innovation


At the Central Economic Work Meeting in December 2014, Chinese President Xi Jinping called for efforts to create an environment conducive to widespread entrepreneurship and innovation, at both policy and institutional levels. In September that year, Premier Li Keqiang declared at the “Summer Davos” forum in Tianjin that China would encourage the widest possible participation in entrepreneurial activities and help unleash a massive wave of grassroots innovation.


Widespread entrepreneurship and innovation will be a new engine for China to upgrade its economy, making it more efficient. This axiom testifies to the leading role of the people in China’s drive towards modernization and the importance of tapping into their unbounded creativity and allowing them to enjoy the dividends of reform and the fruits of development. Promoting entrepreneurship and innovation will create more jobs, increase incomes, boost upward social mobility, and contribute to social equity and justice. This will in turn encourage individuals to further pursue their ideals and realize their full potential while generating higher levels of wealth.


Selected from Keywords to Understanding China published by China Academy of Translation and China International Publishing Group.