Understanding China’s New-Type Industrialization: An Explainer

Understanding China's New-Type Industrialization: An Explainer  China Briefing

Understanding China’s New-Type Industrialization: An Explainer

We discuss why China’s new-type industrialization thrust is an opportune time for foreign businesses and investors looking to expand their presence in the Chinese market. Foreign companies and IP-holders can capitalize on evolving market trends associated with the growing prominence of the industrial internet, industrial software, and industrial automation sectors as China aims to lead in frontier sectors and achieve technology self-sufficiency.

China’s ‘new-type industrialization’ (新型工业化) initiative is a comprehensive strategy to facilitate the country’s continuous industrial advancement and achieve technological self-sufficiency.

The concept serves as a key component of China’s broader economic development agenda—promoting cutting-edge technologies and sustainable industrial growth. By focusing on advanced manufacturing, secure supply chains, and the development of core technologies, new-type industrialization intends to act as a catalyst for further bolstering China’s global competitiveness and positioning the country as a leading player in frontier sectors and high-tech industrial value chains. In this article, we discuss what constitutes new-type industrialization and key policy goals within the broader context of China’s industrial development goals.

What is China’s new-type industrialization?

China first introduced the concept of new-type industrialization in 2002 during the 16th National Party Congress. It represents the country’s strategic adoption of a modern industrial system that integrates knowledge, digitalization, global market participation, and ecological sustainability. The concept has thus become a cornerstone for China’s economic development and global competitiveness.

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It’s also recently gained momentum, attracting heightened attention and concrete commitment from the government. In September 2023, China’s President Xi Jinping stressed the “vital role of high-quality development in advancing new-type industrialization,” emphasizing the need to adapt and lead the ongoing scientific and technological revolution. In particular, President Xi highlighted the integration of manufacturing prowess with digital economic development and industrial informatization as a critical step toward achieving national rejuvenation and building a stronger nation. Such directives were also echoed by Chinese Premier Li Qiang, who emphasized the necessity of reinforcing industrial and supply chain resilience and promoting industrial innovation capacity, alongside the integration of digital technology and green development practices within the industrial sector.

What are China’s policy goals under new-type industrialization?

The key objectives of China’s new-type industrialization strategy are outlined as follows:

  • Customized modernization: Within the framework of new-type industrialization, China aims to achieve industrial growth and modernization tailored to its unique context. This involves embracing technological advancements and integrating the digital and real economies to enhance production capabilities.
  • Global competitiveness: A central focus is placed on strengthening China’s technological independence and reinforcing its industrial supply chains. These measures are seen as essential for establishing a leading position in the global industrial landscape, thereby enhancing the country’s overall competitiveness.
  • Economic growth: Acknowledging the pivotal role of the industry as the primary driver of economic development, Chinese policymakers are prioritizing technological innovation. By placing this at the forefront of their strategy, they aim to bolster economic growth and sustain China’s position as a key player in the global economy.

How is China promoting new-type industrialization?

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