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China sets targets for science and technology progress by 2020
   2016-08-09 17:52:11    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Niu Honglin

File Photo of Li Meng, vice minister of Science and Technology. [Photo: scio.gov.cn]

Chinese authorities have issued a new five-year plan for science and technology progress, expecting its knowledge-intensive services to contribute 20 percent of the gross domestic product.

The State Council plan lists targets for science and technology from this year through 2020 as well as government action to help realize the targets.

Li Meng, vice minister of Science and Technology, says one of the targets is to lift China's world ranking on comprehensive innovation abilities from 18th to 15th.

"What does ranking 15th in the world mean? It means stepping into being a globally recognized innovative country. We are not there yet. Our science and technology contribution ratio needs to be improved from the current 55 percent to 60 percent. The knowledge intensive business services should be able to contribute 20 percent of the GDP, up from this year's 15.6 percent. This is a key index to evaluate if a country is moving up on the value chain."

The plan also says the number of patent applications in 2020 is expected to double that of 2015 while 60 out of every 10,000 workers are expected to be engaged in research and development by 2020.

Xu jing, head of the innovation department in Science and Technology says manned space programs and deep-sea exploration are also priorities in the country's future research.

"During the 13th five-year-plan period, we are also considering the start of a Mars exploration program as well as a study on the overall development and utilization of aerospace, including the on-orbit service and the Space-Air-Ground network. As for deep-sea resources exploration, there are still lots of key technology challenges waiting to be solved. Establishing a deep water station is also on the agenda."

Priorities for the government over the next five years include directing resources to strategic areas, fostering creativity, creating a favorable policy environment and removing barriers to innovation.

The country will spend more resources in research areas key to its national strength and security, including computer chips, integrated circuit equipment, broadband mobile telecommunication, genetic modification, and water pollution control.

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