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China tops the world in incubators, makerspaces

Updated: Sep 19,2017 3:34 PM     Xinhua

WUHAN — China’s 7,500-plus incubators and makerspaces have fostered more than 223,000 businesses as of 2016, according to data from Torch High Technology Industry Development Center of the Ministry of Science and Technology.

China has become the country with the most incubators and makerspaces.

The figure was announced at a forum on Sept 18 to mark the 30th anniversary of China’s first high-tech business incubator, born in 1987 in Wuhan, capital of central China’s Hubei province.

As of the end of 2016, China was home to 3,255 incubators and 4,298 makerspaces, and a total of 223,000 small and medium-sized enterprises emerged from these programs, the data showed. Among them, 1,871 companies were listed or debuted.

In 1987, China’s first technology business incubator, Wuhan Donghu Pioneers Center, was formally established. Since then, business incubators have sprung up across the country.

China’s 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020), which aims to become an “innovation nation” by 2020, an international leader in innovation by 2030, and a world powerhouse in scientific and technological innovation by 2050, has for the first time incorporated accelerators into the national incubator system.

The country aims to increase the total number of domestic incubators, makerspaces and accelerators to more than 10,000 by 2020, with a target of 100 overseas incubators, makerspaces and accelerators for the same period.

These programs are estimated to generate three million job opportunities and 2,000 listed companies, according to staff at Torch High Technology Industry Development Center.