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China, Germany pledge to forge closer innovative partnership

Updated: Jun 2,2017 5:58 AM     Xinhua

BERLIN — Premier Li Keqiang said here on June 1 China is ready to forge a closer innovative partnership with Germany.

Premier Li, who was in Germany for a two-day official visit, made the remarks at a bilateral forum on innovation cooperation, which is also attended by his German counterpart, Angela Merkel.

Calling China and Germany a golden pair of innovation cooperation, Premier Li said such a partnership has put a high-powered engine to China-Germany pragmatic cooperation.

In 2014, the two countries launched a joint action plan themed “shaping innovation together,” which set a precedent for science and technological cooperation between major countries, said Premier Li.

During the past three years, solid steps have been taken in bilateral innovation cooperation, namely the alignment between “Made in China 2025” plan and Germany’s Industry 4.0 concept, the successful cooperation model of the Research Funding 2+2, and the rapid development of various China-Germany industrial parks.

Unveiled in May 2015, the “Made in China 2025” plan helps transform China from a manufacturing giant into an innovation-motivated manufacturer.

While Industry 4.0, a concept coined by the German federal government in 2011, aims to facilitate automation and data exchange in manufacturing technologies, including cyber-physical systems, the internet of things and cloud computing.

Next month, President Xi Jinping will visit Germany and attend the Group of 20 Summit in Hamburg, said Premier Li, calling on the two sides to maintain close high-level exchanges, cement political mutual trust, speed up the synergy of their development strategies, and launch more demonstrative programs.

He suggested that the innovation cooperation between the two nations should be market-oriented and encouraged the two sides to explore new models for commercial development.

He also called on the two sides to accelerate applied research and technology transformation and strengthen cooperation on technology research and development as well as manufacturing sector.

China is willing to learn from Germany its experience in fundamental research, he said, adding that China encourages deepened cooperation between their universities and institutions, so as to create a host of heavyweight research accomplishments in cutting-edge sectors, said the Premier.

In his speech, Premier Li also encouraged innovation by small-and-medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and suggested the establishment of a governmental-level mechanism to serve the cooperation between SMEs of the two countries.

China and Germany are both active players of economic globalization, he said, urging the two sides to create a free and open environment for trade and investment.

He also called on the two countries to promote two-way opening-up and create a more convenient and fair environment for bilateral innovation cooperation.

The Premier encouraged the two sides to step up the exchanges between their students and scientists and wished the first innovation and entrepreneurship week for youth from China and Germany a success.

China strictly protects the intellectual property rights of enterprises in bilateral innovation cooperation and does not require mandatory technology transfer, he said, welcoming German companies to explore China’s new energy vehicles markets.

Premier Li also briefed the guests with China’s economic situation as well as the progress of China’s economic reform.

Merkel, in her speech, appreciated China’s efforts in easing market access and protecting intellectual property rights.

She said Germany is ready to work with China to build a platform to synergize the innovation and high-tech development strategies of the two countries.

She agreed with Premier Li that the two countries should encourage mutually beneficial cooperation between big and small business, deepen cooperation between higher education and vocational education, and expand social involvement of Germany-China partnership of innovation.

She believed that, through joint efforts, the two countries will better meet common challenges and boost shared development.

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