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China: ‘Global scientific and technological cooperation’

by Pieter Werner

During the opening ceremony of the 2024 Zhongguancun Forum, Vice-Premier Ding Xue­xiang of China said China wants an ‘open, fair, just, and nondiscriminatory international environment’ for scientific and technological cooperation. He expressed China’s readiness to collaborate with the global community to build a collective sci-tech ecosystem, emphasizing the need to dismantle barriers that impede the exchange of knowledge, technology, and talent.

Yin Li, secretary of the Communist Party of China Beijing Municipal Committee, detailed Beijing’s strategy to boost its capabilities in innovation. The plan includes accelerating the development of top-tier science and technology parks, increasing investments in basic research, and achieving advancements in core technologies across crucial sectors.

Official data from China’s Ministry of Science and Technology shows that the country’s research and development expenditure in 2023 surged to over 3.3 trillion yuan ($455.4 billion), marking an 8.1 percent increase from the previous year. Investment in fundamental research also grew by 9.3 percent, reaching 221.2 billion yuan.

Marco Aleman, Assistant Director-General of the World Intellectual Property Organization, called China a vital hub of innovation that is instrumental in driving global growth and sustainable development. According to the Global Innovation Index 2023 by WIPO, China is ranked 12th globally and has the highest number of top science and technology clusters in the world, with 24 out of the top 100.

Quarraisha Abdool Karim, president of the World Academy of Sciences, emphasized the importance of international partnerships in science and technology as a means to pursue the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals.

Furthermore, Lei Jun, the CEO of Xiaomi Corp, outlined the company’s future focus on ramping up research and development expenditures and pushing for technological advancements in key areas. This move aligns with the broader national agenda to position China at the forefront of global innovation.

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