Non-governmental scientific and technological exchanges between China and Japan were launched in early 1960's, which were conducted mainly through seminars. At that time, Japanese technicians used to come to China to introduce Japanese new practical technology and discuss with Chinese technicians. The scale of this kind of exchanges has gradually expanded each year. This channel, kept until the mid-70s', became one of the most important channels for Chinese technicians to gain knowledge about the development of the science and technology in the world.
Since the normalization of bilateral relations, the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), the operating organization for science & technology cooperation between the Japanese government and the developing countries, started to establish contacts with China. In 1979, Japan sent a scientific delegation to China for a study tour. In May, 1980, the two governments signed an agreement for scientific and technological cooperation.
Sino-Japanese scientific and technological cooperation has so far witnessed long-standing progress and has become an important element for the bilateral cooperation and contacts. The cooperation between the two governments in this field includes five aspects: bilateral agreements of scientific and technological cooperation, cooperation in the areas of environmental protection and nuclear energy, cooperation through JICA and cooperation between the involved departments of the two governments. Non-governmental scientific and technological exchanges have also grown to a quite extensive scale. Chinese delegations and groups consisting of 10,000 personnel have been sent to Japan annually for this purpose.