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China vows to increase govt support in basic science research

More government support will be placed on improving basic scientific research in China, said Huang Wei, vice-minister of the country’s Ministry of Science and Technology.

“We are looking to promote sharing of scientific and technological resources to strengthen research and academic integrity, and are also working to improve the structures of laboratories as well as trainings of young and working scientists,” said Huang.

Huang made the comments on Feb 11 during a news conference, held shortly after the State Council released a plan, identifying measures on how to advance basic scientific research.

According to the new guidelines, innovation and research are key aspects pushing the country to achieve greater productivity and development.

The goal is to step up scientific developments in both quality and quantity, aiming to bring China closer to becoming world’s leading innovator in science and technology by 2035.

“The government will secure funding for basic scientific research by encouraging local governments and private companies to increase investments,” said Ye Yujiang, director of Basic Research at Ministry of Science and Technology.

“A more diversified and standardized investment mechanism will be established to ensure balanced and stable funding from both the public and private sectors,” said Ye.

With emphasis on increasing originality and innovation, scientists and researchers are also encouraged to create, both through domestic and international scientific collaborations and exchanges.

“The gap between consumer needs and research development is narrowing. We will continue to participate in international science programs and projects, open more of our national research and development programs for international participants, and implement the Technology and Innovation Action Plan under the Belt and Road Science Initiative,” said Huang.

Based on latest data announced by Ministry of Science and Technology, the country’s overall investment in basic scientific research was over 80 billion yuan, that’s approximately $12 billion, in 2016.

Currently, Chinese scientists have made breakthroughs in various subject fields including in neutrino, nanotechnology, stem cell research, human gene sequencing, and high-temperature superconducting materials.