Tianhe becomes Greater Bay Area innovation engine

en.thnet.gov.cn Updated: June 1, 2023

With its strategic location at the junction of Guangzhou's sci-tech innovation axis and economic belt along the Pearl River, the Tianhe district of the city - capital of South China's Guangdong province - has emerged as an innovation engine in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area.

It now boasts over 138,000 technology enterprises, with its number of small and medium-sized tech companies above a designated size - those with annual revenue of at least 20 million yuan ($2.82 million) - ranking it first in the city.

Moreover, the district has attracted half of the "double first-rate" universities in Guangdong province, 43 scientific institutions at or above the provincial level and over 300,000 tech talent.

Tianhe also took third place on the list of China's top 100 innovative districts in 2023.


Moving ahead: The modern and vibrant Tianhe district. [Photo/WeChat account: tianhefabu]

As early as 1985, Tianhe put forward building tech areas relying on colleges and universities to promote its economic development. The pioneering Wushan Science and Technology Street was established at the time.

Three two-story buildings on the street, occupying a combined floor space of over 10,000 square meters, have attracted over 200 technology development companies. The street gradually grew to achieve equal popularity with Beijing's Zhongguancun area.

In 1999, the Keyun Road branch of Tianhe Software Park exempted start-ups of less than 300 sq m from rent and management fees for two years.

In just three years, the number of software development enterprises increased nearly tenfold in Tianhe and the park was given the title of "national software industrial base".

A number of leading technology innovation companies, including NetEase, Kugou and Guangzhou Quwan Network Technology, were established there.


The International Guangzhou Science and Technology Achievement Transformation Tianhe Base is located in what used to be a landmark building on Wushan Science and Technology Street. It offers all-round services for tech SMEs. [Photo/WeChat account: tianhefabu]

Since 2003, Tianhe Smart City has been boosting its scientific innovation by launching various key support measures. These include a maximum support fund of 150 million yuan for three years for key software companies that settle in the area.

Tianhe Smart City now has over 2,500 technology enterprises and over 1,000 high-tech enterprises. It has built eight industrial clusters for fields of endeavor including the smart city, industrial software and innovation in information technology applications.