Embracing entrepreneurship as a tool for economic growth
By Alex Ciuca
October 17, 2016
Our second day of the trip started off with a two-hour drive from Shanghai to the city of Suzhou.
Suzhou is home to the China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP), a state of the art industrial park and highlight of the China-Singapore economic relations. The SIP is feeds off Suzhou’s rich pool of educated talent and in return provides approximately 15 percent of the city’s economy.
Our tour included a presentation of the SIP’s history, achievements and goals. It stressed on the SIP’s aim to encourage innovation and entrepreneurship and to attract high tech industries such as software development or biotechnology. The presentation concluded with an overview of the urban plan, development and future plan for Suzhou.
Our next stop was SIP’s oldest start-up incubator, Suda Tiangong. Here we met with Jacky, its director of operations and mirror image of a Silicon Valley technopreneur. The incubator reflects the entrepreneurial eagerness of the young Chinese population – it receives between 4000 and 5000 applications per year. The selection process is highly competitive, with an acceptance rate of approximately 5%. Results have been promising – it has so far invested 20 million RMB (approximately 3 million USD) in companies that have a current valuation of 2 billion RMB (approximately 300 million USD).
Visiting the incubator was a powerful experience as it provided evidence of the excitement young Chinese have towards entrepreneurship and the embracing of entrepreneurship as a tool for economic growth by the Chinese government.
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Suzhou Industrial Park
Located in Suzhou, a city known as “the paradise on earth,” the Suzhou Industrial Park (SIP) is an important economic cooperation project between the Chinese and Singapore government. SIP covers a total jurisdiction area of 288 sq.km, among which 80 sq.km area belongs to the China-Singapore Cooperative Zone. SIP, holding a 30% annual average growth in key economic indicators, ranks second among national development zones in the comprehensive development index. In 2015, SIP’s GRP totaled 207 billion yuan, with year-on-year growth of 8 percent, utilized US1.6 billion and fixed asset investment totaled 61.2 billion yuan. SIP is also one of the first new-type industrial demonstration bases in China, among the country’s first demonstration eco-industrial parks, and is also China’s first experimental area on preferential policies for technologically advanced service enterprises.
SIP has achieved remarkable achievements in economic transformation and upgrading. SIP has built various scientific and technological carriers, such 30-plus public technological service platforms, 20-plus state-level innovation bases, and nearly 450 research and development institutions. SIP is also home to the International Science Park, Creative Industry Park, and the Nano City.
Stay tuned for more! The Zhuozheng Gardens/Humble Administrator’s Garden is up next!
Alex Ciuca is an Investment Operations Associate at Drapac Capital Partners. He oversees financial reporting and budgeting across the investment portfolio, and coordinates the investment process in regards to acquisitions, dispositions, and settlements. Before joining Drapac, Alex was a global tax professional at PwC where he was a Transfer Pricing Senior Associate. Alex earned his Masters of Economics from the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia State University and a Bachelors of Business Administration at the J. Mack Robinson College of Business at Georgia State University.
Originally from Romania, Alex moved to the U.S. with his family in 2001. His experience led him to follow a career in global business, and to seek out opportunities for cross-cultural immersion. He currently serves on the Leadership Development Committee for the Young Leaders of the World Affairs Council of Atlanta. Alex spends his free time skiing, swimming, reading, and of course, traveling.
Homma Rafi | YLFPChina Media Contact
Office of International Initiatives, Georgia State University