The maximum subsidy for a single project is 600 million yuan! Hengqin Guangdong-Macao In-depth Cooperation Zone issues a special support policy for the biopharmaceutical and health industry

Source: Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Portal

On October 31st 2022, the Hengqin Guangdong-Macao In-depth Cooperation Zone (hereinafter referred to as the 'Cooperation Zone') issued the 'Measures to Support the High-Quality Development of the Biopharmaceutical and Health Industry in the Hengqin Guangdong-Macao In-depth Cooperation Zone', proposing a maximum subsidy of 600 million yuan for major projects with global driving and significant leading roles.

This is the first special support measure to promote the development of the biopharmaceutical and health industry since the establishment of the Cooperation Zone, which will be implemented from January 1, 2022.

The measures have wide coverage, strong support on the development of traditional Chinese medicine Macao brand industry, accelerate the development of the health industry with traditional Chinese medicine research and development and manufacturing as the entry point, and strive to promote the construction of an internationally first-class and distinctive biopharmaceutical and health industry new highland, injecting new vitality into promoting the moderate diversification of the Macao economy.

The Measures specify five chapters of specific support measures, adhere to the theme of serving the diversified industries of Macao and driving R&D and innovation, and create a full lifecycle support environment for biopharmaceutical and health-related enterprises in the Cooperation Zone through precise support for key projects and benchmark projects including those from Macao, building the 'Macao registration + Hengqin production' brand, strengthening R&D and innovation support, optimizing the industrial development ecology, etc., achieving full coverage from landing and settlement to industrialization phase.

The "Macau Registration + Hengqin Production" integrated development brand is being promoted. The "Overall Plan for the Construction of the Hengqin Guangdong-Macao In-Depth Cooperation Zone" states that the cooperation zone should be based on the resource endowment and development foundation of Guangdong and Macao, and create a new platform to promote moderate diversification of the Macao economy around the main direction of diversified development of Macao industries. By tapping into the "registration advantages" of Chinese medicine in Macau and the "brand advantages" of production in Hengqin, an integrated development of the industry is formed. The "Measures" focus on the above principles and guidelines and provide key support for projects involving Macau:

First, it supports high-quality Macau-funded projects. For Macau-funded projects that meet the requirements, a 20% increase in support will be provided on the basis of the subsidy standard for non-Macau-funded projects. At the same time, with the new "Chinese Medicine Pharmaceutical Activities and Chinese Patent Medicine Registration Law" recently promulgated in Macau, Hengqin is encouraged to develop Chinese patent medicine products for registration in Macau. The incentive standard will be increased by 20% based on the product development progress and actual research and development costs, on the basis of the calculation results for non-Macau-funded projects.

Second, for Chinese medicine products, food, and health products registered and produced in the cooperation zone and allowed to use the "Macau supervision" "Macau production" or "Macau design" logo, a subsidy of up to 20 million yuan per variety will be given. At the same time, cooperation zone enterprises are encouraged to apply for relevant production permits and undertake the production of Macau-registered products.

Third, it supports the development of industry-university-research demonstration bases for Macau universities in the cooperation zone, with a maximum annual subsidy of 5 million yuan per base. For biomedicine and health projects that have obtained Macau SAR government technology funding, a maximum subsidy of 8 million yuan per project will be provided.

In addition, it promotes the internationalization of "Macau registration + Hengqin production", encourages international registration, and supports the introduction of imported new drugs and strengthening of quality standard management, further enhancing the internationalization level of the cooperation zone's biomedicine and health industry, with a maximum total reward of 36 million yuan

Focusing on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Innovation across All Categories

The development of TCM and other Macau brand industries is a historical mission and responsibility assigned to the Hengqin Guangdong-Macao Cooperation Zone Construction Plan. Supporting the development of TCM industry is the top priority of the "Measures" in this plan, and it is also the path chosen by the cooperation zone to achieve differentiated development compared to other regions. Under the backdrop of favorable national policies for TCM, the cooperation zone is accelerating the implementation of an innovation-driven development strategy and striving to achieve a "lane change to lead".

The "Measures" give top priority to supporting TCM research and development. The support is wide-ranging and covers various categories, including innovative TCM drugs, improved new drugs, classic formulas, drugs with the same name and formula, TCM preparations in medical institutions, and TCM herbal pieces. Targeted support is provided for each category, and a 50% subsidy is given for actual research and development costs. Among them, individual institutions can receive a maximum annual reward of 150 million yuan for innovative TCM drugs, and efforts are being made to make TCM support policies the best in the country, and to promote the preservation and innovation of traditional TCM.
"Show Confidence and Determination in Developing the Biomedical and Health Industry

Currently, the industrial space represented by the Guangdong-Macao Traditional Chinese Medicine Science and Technology Industrial Park in the cooperation zone has initially formed a gathering momentum, which further promotes the cooperation zone to create a new highland in the construction of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area and balance the cost of entrepreneurship inside and outside the island. On the basis of fully benchmarking the industrial support policies of various regions, the "Measures" correspondingly increased the maximum amount of various awards and subsidies by 20%, effectively enhancing the attractiveness and competitiveness of the biomedical and health industry in the cooperation zone and showing the confidence and determination of the cooperation zone in developing the biomedical and health industry.

In terms of supporting project landing, the "Measures" propose that for major projects with a global driving and significant leading role, a single project can receive a maximum subsidy of 600 million yuan. For globally introduced benchmark projects with strong R&D and good growth, subsidies for the actual paid-in registered capital, property purchase, and R&D expenses are provided, totaling more than 30 million yuan.

The "Measures" also provide R&D support for eligible biological products and chemical drugs. A single institution can receive an annual maximum reward of 120 million yuan. In encouraging the R&D of medical devices, a single institution can receive an annual maximum reward of 18 million yuan. For health products, special medical purpose formula food, special-use cosmetics and other large health products that have obtained relevant registration certificates, each institution can receive a maximum annual cumulative reward of 12 million yuan."
Providing full life-cycle support to the industry

The development of the biopharmaceutical and healthcare industry cannot be achieved without the cultivation of basic platforms. The "Measures" provide detailed subsidies and incentives covering multiple aspects such as professional technical service platforms, professional field exhibition activities, and industry associations, aiming to provide professional, comprehensive, and accessible market-oriented support for the development of the industry in the cooperation zone.

In terms of professional platform construction, the "Measures" explicitly support the construction of public service platforms that reflect the characteristics of traditional Chinese medicine. They also support the construction of professional technical service platforms such as Contract Research Organizations (CRO), Contract Manufacturing Organizations (CMO), and Contract Development and Manufacturing Organizations (CDMO), with a maximum subsidy of up to 60 million yuan. The "Measures" also support the construction of provincial-level or higher-level innovative carriers such as key laboratories, engineering research centers, and enterprise technology centers in the biopharmaceutical and healthcare field, with a maximum subsidy of up to 36 million yuan for relevant projects.

At the same time, subsidies will be provided for the operation of established biopharmaceutical and healthcare public service and professional technical platforms, and efforts will be made to encourage the use of GCP (Good Clinical Practice) in the cooperation zone. The "Measures" also support the introduction of large-scale biopharmaceutical and healthcare exhibitions, encourage the establishment of industry associations, and encourage enterprises to introduce "highly skilled and in-demand" talents, as well as establish talent training bases. The maximum annual subsidies for the above-related activities can reach up to 12 million yuan.
Title: Expertise in the Evaluation System Highlights the Role of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area in Safeguarding the Industry Pathway

The biopharmaceutical and health industry requires a high level of expertise. In comparison to previous industry policies, the "Several Measures" specifically propose the establishment of a Biopharmaceutical and Health Industry Development Expert Committee evaluation mechanism. Through the participation of Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao experts, the evaluation working group is formed to fully leverage the technical advantages of the Macao Pharmaceutical Inspection Bureau and the Guangdong Provincial Drug Administration, "using professionals to do professional work," achieving "true expertise, true evaluation, true implementation, true performance, and true fulfillment," better and faster promoting the development of the industry, and activating the "late-mover advantage" of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area in developing the biopharmaceutical and health industry in the cooperation zone.

This document has been translated into English.  If there is any inconsistency or ambiguity between the English version and the Chinese version, the Chinese version shall prevail.
The full text of the measures, in Chinese, can be found below:

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