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January 16, 2017
Toronto joins the first China (Shenzhen) International Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition
Mayor John Tory today announced Toronto's participation in the first China (Shenzhen) International Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition. He was joined by Deputy Mayor Denzil Minnan-Wong (Ward 34 Don Valley East); Reza Moridi, Ontario's Minister of Research, Innovation and Science; Senator Victor Oh; People's Republic of China Deputy Consul General Xu Wei; and Jenny Qi, Chairperson of Canada Confederation of Shenzhen Associations.

"Toronto is excited to be part of this competition and to help provide this opportunity for our talented companies to grow in China," said Mayor Tory. “I want Toronto to be seen internationally as a place where big things are happening and where companies can grow and expand their markets internationally.”

This international competition of eight cities offers the opportunity for high-calibre talent and projects tied to five key sectors to win funding of up to $240,000, access to venture capital and China government grants, as well as office space to develop and launch their technologies and build their companies in Shenzhen.
"This is an excellent way for Toronto companies to compete at a global level," said Deputy Mayor Minnan-Wong. "Their participation, even if they don't win, will help showcase Toronto's innovation community to a worldwide business audience."

In November 2016, the City of Toronto and the City of Shenzhen signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to exchange business information and opportunities. Toronto's involvement in the competition is the first partnership resulting from the MOU.

The City of Toronto's role in the competition is to help promote it to Toronto's innovation community as an opportunity to access funding and export potential for their technologies in China. The Toronto division is co-hosted by the Canada Confederation of Shenzhen Associations and the Shenzhen Overseas Students Association of Canada.

"This international competition is worthy of the name of ‘the Olympics of Innovations’,” said Qi. “The competition is the first partnership formed between the two cities. As the largest immigrant cities and innovative cities in their respective countries, Shenzhen and Toronto will enjoy good potential for development in aspects of industry, culture, and innovation.”
The Toronto competition will be held in March, with the top two companies from each sector selected to compete in the finals in Shenzen in mid-April 2017. The deadline for applications is February 28. For more competition information, visit:

Toronto is Canada's largest city, the fourth largest in North America, and home to a diverse population of about 2.8 million people. It is a global centre for business, finance, arts and culture and is consistently ranked one of the world's most livable cities. In 2017, Toronto will honour Canada's 150th birthday with "TO Canada with Love," a year-long program of celebrations, commemorations and exhibitions. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can visit, call 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or follow us on Twitter at and on Instagram at

Media Contact
Shane Gerard
Strategic Communications

Keerthana Kamalavasan
Office of the Mayor

Janet Qi
Canada Confederation of Shenzhen Associations



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