Hangzhou leads in new round of competition for talents among Chinese cities
HANGZHOU, China, May 17, 2018
As China marks the 40 anniversary of its reform and opening-up policy this year, Zhejiang province in east China, a benchmark in that historical transition, recently held a conference on opening-up, vowing to accelerate attraction of high-end resources including capital, technology and talents of world class.
The province wants to have an edge in the next round of reform and economic and social transformation in China, but how to lure more talented people holds the key.
Recent years saw some major Chinese cities, including Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang province, compete for human resources. Those cities not only introduce policies to tap human resources, but also improve ecological environment for talents. The latest statistics show that Hangzhou is leading the competition, for now.
According to evaluation by the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs of China, Hangzhou has been listed in the “Top Ten Most Attractive Cities in the Eyes of Foreign Talents” for eight consecutive years. In 2017, its net influx of talents and the net inflow of overseas talents ranked first in Chinese cities.
Hangzhou recently welcomed the establishment of West Lake University in its Xihu District. As the first type of university in China with a focus on cutting-edge research, the university is recruiting top researchers across the world. It has attracted renowned scientists including Nobel Prize winners and helped high-level talents gather in Hangzhou.
The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), which was held last year, put forward the strategy of “gathering the talents of the world” to speed up the building of a globally competitive talent system. Relying on its excellent environment for industrial development, abundant way of financing, and efficient government service platform, Hangzhou has built an excellent ecological environment for talents and is striving to be China’s innovative city and an international highland for talented people.
Not only does Hangzhou host Chinese Internet giants such as Alibaba, but it is also the gathering place for China’s most successful “business community” — “Zhejiang Merchants.” There are innovative enterprises that may become unicorns emerging every day in the city. Hangzhou is undoubtedly one of the most dynamic cities in China.
At the same time, Hangzhou is in the “window period” of urban internationalization. Hangzhou municipal government has successively introduced a series of highly preferential policies for talents, focusing on its ability to globally allocate human resources and creating conditions for the influx of more international talents.
In February, Hangzhou issued a new policy, which contains “Ten Clauses for Attracting Global Talents.” The focus is on foreign talent recruitment and support to their business startup. Foreign elites can receive as much as 100 million yuan if they start up a business in Hangzhou.
The Indian-American Srivastava set up a robotic surgery R&D project in Hangzhou last year and established the company’s global headquarters here. His company has thus received a number of subsidies from the local government, including rent reductions of 1.5 million yuan, and has won 13.5 million U.S. dollar financing from Chinese investors.
According to statistics, there are currently more than 15,000 foreigners starting their businesses in Hangzhou. There are nearly 5,000 companies in the city that have foreigners registered and acted as legal persons.
Compared with other Chinese cities, the talent policy introduced by Hangzhou not only covers aspects such as the introduction and cultivation of talents, support for business start-ups, and living support, but also includes a talent service system to promote effective policy implementation.
Lin Haosheng, a Singaporean who came to Hangzhou in 2016, believes that issues such as housing, health care, and school enrollment are all critical ones that determine talented people’s decision to stay. Hangzhou’s support policies have retained talents.
The talent policy promulgated by Hangzhou is producing real results through the implementation of an action plan called “New Paradise of Innovation and Entrepreneurship.” Fan Yuan, a graduate of California State University, resigned as an executive at Silicon Valley’s top information security company, and established his own business of DBAPPSecurity in Hangzhou. He led his team to upgrade China’s cyber security research capabilities to the world’s leading level.
In order to attract innovative talents in high-tech industries and start-ups, Hangzhou has also established a number of high-tech business parks in recent years to help talents solve a series of practical problems such as financing and industrial cultivation in the early stage of the venture.
Xu Liyi, mayor of Hangzhou, said Hangzhou will create a more excellent and open talent ecological environment and attract more people to live and work here in the future.