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DeepTech & Artificial Intelligence Industry in Asia Pacific Region 2020 Assessment

While most Asian countries lag behind the industrialized world in AI adoption, the trend is changing on. The growing vast and emerging talent pool base, rising adoption of cloud computing, a freedom from legacy assets, and the various government initiatives favouring AI are mainly driving such sectors as financial services, healthcare market, transportation, and media. The aim of this report is to provide a broad analysis of the past, present state and near-future trajectory of the DeepTech and Artificial Intelligence Industry in Asia and Pacific in 2020, and the strategic management and government plans for artificial intelligence. It also describes last technological and media trends in Asia and gives an overview of underlying economic data. This new report aims to outline the current status of the DeepTech and Artificial Intelligence industry in all Asia Pacific countries that are related to AI, profiling 2400 DeepTech and AI companies, 1300 investors, 80+ Hubs and 125 DeepTech and AI Influencers.


The report is structured so as to make plain the development of DeepTech and Artificial Intelligence in Asia, including following countries, relative newcomers to the industrialized world scene like India, Indonesia, Malaysia and already developed societies like  Japan, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, South Korea and Taiwan.

 

“DeepTech & Artificial Intelligence Industry in Asia Pacific Region 2020”: provides a broad analysis of the current Asia and Pacific-based Artificial Intelligence landscape, considering private sector with specific focus on the current state of the industry and also provide the readers with forecasts and predictions based on the insights gathered from that analysis. Each trend is carefully reviewed and extrapolated with the necessary precautions. 
 

The main player on the continent - China, now leads the world in annual R&D spending with nearly $275 billion (just above 2% of GDP), but other Asian countries are also above the 2% mark, including Japan ($176 billion), South Korea ($70 billion) and Singapore ($13 billion). For comparison, U.S. federal R&D spending is roughly $131 billion. While these figures capture a wide range of sectors from biotech to materials to computer science, all are driven by AI. 


As a main insight we can say that all major Asian economies are investing heavily in the creation of new opportunities centered on AI in order to increase their competitive advantage over the rest of the world. An advantage that the West soon won’t be able to catch up with. 
 

CHINA 
1075 COMPANIES

China is the undoubted leader in DeepTech and AI industry in the Asia Pacific region and aims to become the global leader in the sphere as the State Council of the People’s Republic of China has announced its goal to become a $150 billion AI global leader by the year 2030.
China is already a global leader in AI research and the biggest driver of deep technology investment growth in the world.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

INDIA
376  COMPANIES

India is the second-largest DeepTech and AI industry in Asia. Since the 90s Informational technologies have been crucial for the Indian economy developing to account for 7.7% of India’s GDP in 2016.


Recently, the Indian government took steps to support the trend by launching initiatives as the National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) and the Policy Commission leading a national program on AI concentrating on research.
However, one of the main problems of DeepTech and AI in India is the lack of a developed market and systematic investment.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

AUSTRALIA
229 COMPANIES

Australia has a competitive advantage as the leader in technical and scientific publications, however, only 12 Australian firms were represented in the world’s top 2500 R&D leaders.


The most successful Australian Deep Tech startups are centered in the fields of farming, drone delivery systems, cancer treatment, and rechargeable batteries.
The most important challenges for Australian DeepTech is the investment for the long term, creation of the shared vision, and nurturing DeepTech Culture.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

SINGAPORE
153  COMPANIES

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

Deep Tech and AI sphere in Singapore is considered to be a role model in terms of how government, private institutions, and educational institutions can cooperate.


The consistent government support for Deep Tech, strong IP (Intellectual property) regime, proximity to outstanding educational institutions which have the programs encouraging their alumni to create startups and offices of tech giants in Singapore create the fertile environment for the creation of Deep Tech.

JAPAN
140  COMPANIES

Japanese deep tech startups have rapidly gained power for the last couple of years, through a constant capital injection from and co-development with large corporations. At the same time, European Multinational corporations such as Airbus and Deutsche Bahn have also reached and invested in some Japanese deep tech startups.


The interest of Tech giants in supporting the DeepTech sphere, a big pool of talent from STEM spheres, and well-established links with markets and capital in other countries provide favorable conditions for the development of AI and Deep Tech in Japan. 

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

SOUTH KOREA
132  COMPANIES

South Korea has earned a reputation as a leading global information and communication technology center and is ranked second in Bloomberg Index of Most Innovative Nations 2020. 


With its cutting-edge ICT infrastructure boasting the world’s fastest internet speeds, the country is home to global leading electronics and IT companies.


As the first country in the world to roll out commercial 5G, South Korea can lead in adopting and optimizing AI by virtue of the nation’s compact size, wide broadband coverage and smartphone penetration. 
By 2030 it aims to own 20% of the global AI chip market. 

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

HONG KONG
72  COMPANIES

Al is being adopted in almost every industry. Besides finance and banking, the use of AI is spreading expansively in healthcare and education. 


The AI Readiness Index among residents and businesses in 2020 is 50 and 56 out of 100 points respectively.


Despite all these promising developments and the growing use of AI, the speed of technology adoption in Hong Kong remains slow compared to Mainland China. The same is observed in the development of technology and Al-specific regulations. 

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

TAIWAN

38  COMPANIES

Taiwan is a world-leader in the area of semiconductors, information and communication technology and manufacturing. 


Taiwan is successful in preserving home-grown and attracting foreign AI talent, with annually more than 10.000 computer science graduates.


Taiwan is the world leading chip manufacturer with 25-30% of integrated circuits globally being manufactured in Taiwan. It produces 75% of personal computers, 50% of LCD screens, 25% of semiconductors, and 20% of smartphones worldwide.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

NEW ZEALAND

21  COMPANIES

Taiwan is a world-leader in the area of semiconductors, information and communication technology and manufacturing. 


Taiwan is successful in preserving home-grown and attracting foreign AI talent, with annually more than 10.000 computer science graduates.


Taiwan is the world leading chip manufacturer with 25-30% of integrated circuits globally being manufactured in Taiwan. It produces 75% of personal computers, 50% of LCD screens, 25% of semiconductors, and 20% of smartphones worldwide.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

INDONESIA

20  COMPANIES

The country leads Southeast Asia in AI adoption, with 24.6% of organizations using the technology in their operations.


Indonesian companies had the highest rates of AI integration in Southeast Asia; a number of state projects employ AI, to anticipate state fires for example; and some government agencies are promoting AI development and technology-based tools at schools and other learning institutions.


The AI development  is one of five sectors in particular focus, apart from the development of the internet of things, advanced robotics, augmented reality and 3D printing.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

MALAYSIA

20  COMPANIES

Malaysia’s deep tech and startup industry has experienced a massive transformation allowing the startup community to attract investments to the tune of $1.45 billion in 2016. 
There are several successful tech startups from Malaysia working in the fields of AI, 3D face recognition, sentiment robot, etc.

Number of companies featured in the Landscape Overview

AI Race between US and China

The STEM workforce in China has also rapidly expanded. The total number of Chinese universities grew from 1,792 to 2,560 between 2005 and 2015. 8 million Chinese students graduated from college in 2017, compared to approximately 1.9 million graduating with bachelor’s degrees and 1 million with associate’s degrees in the United States. The number of science and engineering bachelor’s degrees conferred in China increased from 359,000 in 2000 to 1.65 million in 2014. 

 

China surpassed the United States as the world’s largest producer of natural sciences and engineering doctorates in 2007. 

 

In addition, with ambitious science projects, generous salaries, and high levels of lab funding, China has made a concerted effort to recruit top foreign talent. The Thousand Talents Program offers scientists a one-million-yuan ($151,000) starting bonus. Foreign scientists receive additional incentives, such as subsidies for accommodation, visits home, and education.

 

The Department of Energy recently warned that talent programs were offering scientists at U.S. national labs hundreds of thousands, and in some cases millions, of dollars to conduct research in China.

According to the report Innovation and National Security published by  Council on Foreign Relations the United States leadership in science and technology is at risk.

 

China is investing significant resources in developing new technologies, and after 2030 it will likely be the world’s largest spender on research and development. Although Beijing’s efforts to become a scientific power could help drive global growth and prosperity, and both the United States and China have benefited from bilateral investment and trade, Chinese theft of intellectual property and its market-manipulating industrial policies threaten the United States economic competitiveness and national security.

 

China in particular has ambitious plans to become a world leader in science, technology, and medicine. Between 1991 and 2015, China increased its R&D expenditures thirtyfold, averaging an 18 percent increase annually since 2000.

 

R&D expenditures rose to $254 billion in 2017, approximately 45 percent of U.S. R&D spending for that year. China’s GDP is growing and China is dedicating a greater portion of its economic resources to R&D, planning to eventually reach a spending target of 2.5 percent of GDP. It will likely equal or exceed the United States in overall R&D expenditures after 2030.

China overtook the United States in the production of scientific papers in 2016. According to a study by scientific publisher Elsevier and business news outlet Nikkei, China published more high-impact research papers than the United States did in twenty-three out of thirty research fields with clear technological applications.

 

China’s current five-year plan prescribes that the biotechnology sector should exceed 4 percent of GDP by 2020, and state, provincial, and local governments have invested more than $100 billion in the life sciences sector. For example, BGI (The Beijing Genomic Institute) is by some measures the largest genome-sequencing center in the world.

 

On AI, Beijing hopes to leverage massive amounts of data, permissive regulations, entrepreneurial firms, and government support to build an industry worth $150 billion by 2030. In 2017, China’s AI industry received nearly $26 billion in investment and financing. China surpassed the United States in volume of AI research in 2014, including in AI-related patent registration and articles on deep learning. China is also training a large number of specialists. 23 % of the accepted papers for the 2017 Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence conference were from China, and AI authors in China were cited 44 % more in 2016 than they were in 2000.