China's State Council took another step this week in its journey to raise the profile of the Suzhou industrial park, which is already home to several pharmaceutical production plants and research facilities, approving a plan submitted by the Jiangsu provincial government and the Ministry of Commerce for a pilot program in the China-Singapore Suzhou Industrial Park, which is located in Suzhou in Jiangsu province.
The plan is to make the park "more open and more innovative," according to a statement on the council's website, which also said the industrial park "should focus on developing the biopharmaceutical industry, the application of nanotechnology and cloud computing" as well as increase international cooperation.
The park is already home to several drug manufacturers such as China-based BeiGene, which earlier announced it intends to build a 9,000-square-meter (96,875-square-foot) manufacturing facility that can handle clinical supplies but be large enough for commercial production. It said its new plant should be completed by 2017.
In 2012, TOT Biopharm completed an 18-month-long project constructing the first stage of its $100 million factory in Suzhou, which is near Shanghai. The factory complex specializes in the research and development, production and marketing of anticancer drugs globally.
Japan's Eisai has also built a plant to make parenteral products near one it already has in Suzhou. It says the plant will be used to produce products for other emerging markets in Asia and Central and South America.
In its statement this week, China's State Council asked that the park "draw on experiences from the country's free trade zones and upgrade its industries and competitiveness."
Suzhou should "should bring in high-end industries, encourage companies to work on research and development and marketing, and attract multinational companies to locate their high-end factories inside the park," the statement said.
The council also said related authorities should "continue to streamline administrative approval procedures … in order to help make it grow at a faster pace."
- here's the statement
Eric Palmer contributed to this report.