The European Union (EU) and China launched on Wednesday in Brussels the China-EU Science and Technology Year, set to feature an array of activities aimed at promoting cooperation in these key fields.
Chinese Vice-Minister for Science and Technology, Wu Zhongze, spoke at the ceremony, saying that China has included strengthening innovative capability in the country's national development strategy, and is aiming to make great progress by 2020.
Wu Zhongze also said, over the next 15 years, China's science and technology development will be closely linked to its economic development, and play a more significant role in propelling economic growth.
EU Science and Research Commissioner Janez Potocnik said that China is quickly becoming a major global player in science and technology. Research will play a big part in helping people overcome varied challenges in the future, he added.
He stressed that the China-EU Science and Technology Year will increase awareness in both China and the EU about the benefits of cooperation.
The activities will range from conferences, seminars, forums and exhibitions and areas of cooperation will include health, energy, the environment, food and bio-technology.
The Science and Technology year, running until September 2007, coincides with the adoption and start of the EU's Seventh Framework Program and the renewal of China's 11th 5-Year Plan, both of which focus strongly on science and technology.
(CRI October 12, 2006)