29 March 2019 | News
Cluster to be built by the Wuxi municipal government and Wuxi High-tech District
AstraZeneca is spearheading the creation of a new life sciences park, in Wuxi, China, that aims to nurture innovation by bringing together local and international companies, government, and medical and academic institutions to help create a world-class healthcare innovation ecosystem.
The International Life Science Innovation Park will be built by the Wuxi municipal government and Wuxi High-tech District and supported by AstraZeneca as a founding partner.
AstraZeneca recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Wuxi High-tech District at the Boao Forum for Asia (BFA) Annual Conference 2019.
The new Wuxi ecosystem will provide companies with shared resources, including laboratories, equipment and services. It will also facilitate collaboration with AstraZeneca's global R&D network to accelerate innovation, supporting the end-to-end development and commercialisation of medicines in China.
Leif Johansson, Chairman of the Board, AstraZeneca, said: “With the all-round opening up of China, I believe that a variety of industries will embrace international cooperation opportunities. The establishment of this agreement builds on our strong legacy of innovation in China and is well aligned to our open innovation approach and firm belief in the value of strong local innovation ecosystems.”
Leon Wang, Executive Vice President, International and President of AstraZeneca China, said, AstraZeneca is committed to patient-centric, open innovation and the International Life Science Innovation Park in Wuxi is another example of our continuing efforts to improve China’s healthcare system. We look forward to working with the municipal government and Wuxi High-tech District to co-create a partnership-led ecosystem that can support and accelerate progress of potential new medicines from early research and development through to commercialisation, in China and beyond.”
Steve Bates, Chief Executive of the UK BioIndustry Association, said: “China is an important and exciting opportunity for UK life science companies. The chance to participate in the creation of the new Wuxi cluster is one not to be missed. This new opportunity will enable UK companies to co-locate with AstraZeneca in China, within a truly supportive local ecosystem, making it easier for UK life sciences companies to partner, grow and innovate with like-minded dynamic companies and investors in China.”
The initiative also received backing from the Company’s current partners BioVentureHub in Sweden and The Skolkovo Foundation in Russia which were present at the signing of the MOU alongside the UK BioIndustry Association which pledged to help UK life sciences companies establish a presence in Wuxi. The MOU follows the establishment of AstraZeneca’s China Commercial Innovation Centre, also in Wuxi, that is developing new ways of working with China’s healthcare system.