Synergy in China-ASEAN innovation

Some 100 projects were exhibited at the 4th edition of innovfest Suzhou which focused on building shared innovation opportunities between China and the ASEAN region

Over 1,000 entrepreneurs, corporates, investors, technology start-ups, professionals and academics came together for innovfest Suzhou 2018, held at the NUS (Suzhou) Research Institute (NUSRI) on 20 and 21 June. Organised annually by NUSRI and BLOCK71 Suzhou with the aim of building a key cross-border platform linking China companies with innovations in Singapore and across the world, this year’s event also hoped to create greater synergy between China and ASEAN’s innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems and to drive innovation and market opportunities between the two regions.

The event was graced by Guest-of-Honour Dr Chen Deming, Chairman of the China Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment.

Giving the opening address at the event, NUS President Professor Tan Eng Chye said, “We hope that innovfest Suzhou can play a pivotal role in linking the real economy and innovative technologies, the government and enterprises; building bridges between China and overseas to further raise and deepen the bilateral cooperation between China and Singapore.”

The “Belt and Road” China-ASEAN International University Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, part of the Temasek Foundation International — National University Programme for Leaders in University Management series, took place during the event. Professionals and academics from more than 30 top ranking universities including Tsinghua University, Peking University and NUS discussed the promotion of innovation exchange between China and countries along the “Belt and Road”, and increasing opportunities for cross-border cooperation in innovation and market access.

Delegates at innovfest Suzhou 2018 also had the opportunity to participate in a myriad of activities including talent dialogues and industry visits, and view product showcases categorised into four main focus areas — Artificial Intelligence, Biomedical and Health, Smart Green City, and Technology Commercialisation.

In total, more than 100 cutting-edge technology projects from over 10 countries and regions including Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Malaysia, North America and Europe, were exhibited at the event.

innovfest Suzhou has attracted close to 3,000 participants from more than 800 companies and agencies and showcased over 300 innovative projects since its inception in 2015, while BLOCK71 Suzhou has incubated close to 40 start-ups thus far, establishing significant market presence in China for Singapore start-ups and companies.