By Will Koulouris
SYDNEY, May 24 (Xinhua) -- The Torch High Technology Industry Development program will bring eight, lucky Queensland entrepreneurs to China, as part of a long-term partnership strategy with Australia in the fields of science, technology, and innovation.
The chosen recipients were announced Wednesday at a special ceremony in Brisbane, with representatives from the Queensland government and China's Ministry of Science and Technology congratulating the successful companies.
Queensland Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch said in a statement that the aim of the partnership is for the participants to take advantage of the burgeoning science and technology sectors in both countries.
The eight recipients received funding under the first round of the government's 480,000 AU dollars (357,594 U.S. dollars) Commercialization Partnership Program (CPP)
"The CPP is the product of our very strong relationship with China's prestigious Ministry of Science and Technology which leads and funds science and technology development in China through the Torch High Technology Industry Development program," Enoch said.
One of the lucky few chosen was Ocean Organics, a company from the Queensland city of Alexandria Hills, who are developing ways to extract pharmaceutical, and skincare benefits out of dried seagrass.
The founder of the company, Ross Meaclem, told Xinhua on Wednesday that he was "excited" for the opportunity that the Torch program would provide his company through partnership with China, and looks forward to establishing mutually beneficial outcomes with businesses in the Chinese market.
"I have done everything I can do within my financial means, and I just need a partner to fund it into market, hopefully a Chinese company," Meaclem said.
With his company focussing on natural healthcare solutions, as their products are derived from seagrass extracts, Meachem said there was great potential for his product within the Chinese market.
"Seagrass is a flowering plant, and herbal medicines are big, big business now," Meachem said.
Meachem said that the placement within the Guangdong High-Tech Industrial Park during the course of the program, will allow him to engage, and build his businesses in China, through establishing cooperation and exchanges with local companies who can share their expertise.
One of the other chosen start-ups, Applied Matter Systems, will be travelling instead to the Guangzhou Industrial Business Incubator, and founder David Inderias said the opportunity provided by the Torch High Technology Industry Development program was a "dream come true."
"This is an opportunity to commercialize on a scale we only previously imagined," Inderias said.
"We are applying technology honed in Queensland, on the world stage in China."
Current businesses that are found within the Torch precincts totalled 11.9 percent of the Chinese GDP in 2015, while also accounting for roughly 18.5 percent of exports to overseas markets.