Technology that allows China's 1.3 billion people to make phone calls simultaneously using only six fiber optic cables, each with a capacity of 17.32 terabytes per second and a transmission distance of 2240 kilometers, was invented here in Wuhan, China.

The Wuhan East Lake High-Tech Development Zone, known as Optics Valley of China (OVC), is a key innovation center which prides itself on its creation of China's first fiber optic cable and the establishment of the largest fiber optic cable production base in the world; this area is also home to China's largest photoelectric device manufacturing base. OVC was approved by the State Council in 2009 as the second national demonstration zone for independent innovation.

A view of Optics Valley

New talents bring progress

In the first quarter of 2014, the gross output value of Wuhan's new advanced technology industry amounted to RMB 126.564 billion, up 22.35 percent over the figure for the corresponding period last year. The number of new high-tech enterprises is increasing at an incredible rate; in 2013, 1,000 new enterprises were born in Wuhan.

Last year, Wuhan unveiled a five-year action plan designed to accelerate the development of high-tech industries. It set a specific development schedule for these industries and the supporting fields, such as photoelectric technology, next-generation information technology, advanced equipment manufacturing, new materials, high-tech services, biological techniques and new medicine, geospace information and application services, energy conservation and environmental protection, new energy and new-energy automobiles, and modern agriculture.

On March 27, 2012, Zhang Lina, academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and professor at Wuhan University, received the 2011 Anselme Payne Award. She is the only Chinese citizen to have won the award in the past 50 years. She discovered a "magic" aqueous solvent secret using low temperatures; her discovery has paved the way for further research into regeneration and reuse of cellulose and chitin waste.

Building and expanding business incubators

Incubators areas receiving government support for high-tech enterprise start-ups are praised as "dream centers" for entrepreneurs.

Ever since the first incubator for high-tech industries came into being in Wuhan in 1987, it has given birth to many technology companies, including Wuhan Kaidi Electric Power Co., Ltd., Wuhan Guide Infrared Co., Ltd., and Wuhan Fingu Electronic Technology Co., Ltd.

So far, the incubator area in Wuhan has expanded to cover an area of six million square meters. Wuhan ranks first among similar cities for its number of state-level incubators.

Wuhan took the lead after launching the Qingtong Plan in 2013. This package of preferential policies aims to assist college students to start businesses. It motivates students on campus and those graduates who graduated less than five years to start a business by eliminating all office, factory, or land rent for the first year and halving the rent for the following three years. This program also sets up a RMB 300 million state-sponsored Angel Investment Fund, which is used to support collegiate entrepreneurs.