Chinese interest in digital health

5 December, 2018

How do you impress a large Chinese business delegation? One way is to show how life science with digital health is in the middle of a paradigm shift – with West Sweden leading the way.

Expertise in IT, mobility, artificial intelligence (AI), data analysis and connected devices – along with a strong and open innovation tradition in life science.

This combination makes Western Sweden extra attractive for entrepreneurs, capital and international cooperation.

That was the message to approximately 30 companies and organisations visiting Gothenburg from the major Chinese industrial city of Ningbo. Sahlgrenska Science Park’s CEO, Charlotta Gummeson, had the opportunity to share her perspective on the special opportunities that West Sweden’s business, academia and public sector currently currently offer.

Charlotta talked about the major challenges facing healthcare, and about the opportunities that arise when you combine technology and experiences from different industries in new ways.

“The transformation is just as big as the one the vehicle industry is going through. Similarly, we are seeing how new players like Amazon, Google and Apple are entering the life science arena and challenging traditional ways of doing things,” explained Charlotta Gummeson to the mainly Chinese audience.

“Gothenburg and this region have a lot to offer. We are now focusing on how new innovations can be incorporated into healthcare and contribute to new ways of working.” 

The Chinese delegation came to Gothenburg to explore new opportunities for trade cooperation between the two regions. Ningbo is a couple of hours drive from Shanghai – in the Hangzhou province where Volvo and CEVT owner Geely is located. The connections to Gothenburg are therefore already strong.

For the West Sweden start-up sector in life science, contacts with China are becoming increasingly important. Especially with regard to increased interest from Chinese investment capital and access to the huge Chinese market and production resources. 

Compared with Gothenburg, the port of Ningbo is an economic giant. The city has a large industrial sector, including clothing manufacturing. Last year, the city exported a total of $73.5 billion. Imports were worth $39 billion.

A series of key economic figures were presented b the Chinese during the seminar. For example, up until September of this year, $168 billion has been invested from Ningbo into more than 16,000 foreign companies and organisations. Of which, $21 billion went outside of Asia.

The Ningbo-Gothenburg Industrial Cooperation Conference, which also included Johanneberg Science Park and Lindholmen Science Park, was arranged by Business Region Gothenburg and the Ningbo Municipal Commission of Commerce.


Text: Kenny Genborg