Reform and innovation provide China and the United Kingdom with rich opportunities to work together, the head of a leading Chinese think tank said in London on Oct 23.
Li Wei, president of the Development Research Center of the State Council, a central government think tank, said such cooperation could make a huge contribution to global sustainable development.
“China is the largest developing country, while the UK is the first industrialized developed country,” he said while highlighting areas of potential cooperation.
“Learning from each other’s successful experience, cooperation on macroeconomic regulation and control, using government and social funds, modern financial industries, transportation facilities and creating information products and new energy equipment, will certainly facilitate the progress of the two countries,” Li said.
He delivered the keynote speech at the China-UK Reform and Innovation Forum during President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the UK, jointly convened by two leading think tanks, the DRC and Chatham House of Britain.
“To support innovation, China has issued a series of policies and measures to strengthen protection of intellectual property rights and to stimulate the vitality of the whole society,” Li said.
China has been catching up with developed countries by focusing on research, leading the world in the number of specialists involved, he said. Its spending on research and development is the world’s second highest, and applications for international patents are third highest.
“Chinese manufacturing is upgrading, and we have gained a competitive edge in leading technologies such as high-speed railways and UHV power transmission,” Li said.
“However, we realize that we still have much to learn from developed countries, such as Britain, the birthplace of the industrial revolution,” he added.
China and the UK both faced structural contradictions, he added, and achieving sustainable development through reform and innovation will not only benefit both countries, but also be of tremendous global significance.