In order to ensure a coordinated and complementary development of Shanghai-based R&D structures, the Shanghai Municipal S&T Commission – together with other five municipal commissions/bureaus – on 25 April published the Several Regulations to Boost the Innovative Development of New-type R&D Structures (Hu Ke Gui  No. 3).
According to the document, ‘new-type R&D structures’ are defined as “R&D structures with independent legal personality, differing from traditional research entities in their operational, management and financial mechanisms, which are more comprehensive, flexible and effective”. New-type R&D structures include (a) S&T social organisations; and (b) R&D service enterprises, and generally perform at least one of the following functions:
- Innovative and cross-disciplinary basic/applied research in key priority areas for national or municipal development, particularly involving modern engineering technologies and disruptive technologies
- R&D of industrial key technologies or provision of related services, in emerging strategic industries and in key priority sectors for local innovation development
- Tech transfer or incubation services, promoting innovation and entrepreneurship development
New-type R&D structures must apply to relevant district- or municipal-level departments for official government recognition. Recognised structures will receive a subsidy of up to 30% the R&D expenses incurred in the previous year (max 3 million RMB), and will enjoy preferential support when applying to government-funded projects and talent attraction schemes; R&D services enterprises will also enjoy R&D pre-tax deductions in line with national policies, as well as preferential CIT rate associated with HNTE status. Finally, the purchase of services provided by new-type R&D structures will be prioritised through S&T Innovation vouchers. Finally, new-type R&D structures will be exempted from VAT and consumption tax at the import stage if the imported product is not available domestically or able to meet the R&D structure’s needs.
The regulations will be effective for two years, until 19 April 2021.