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The Ministry of Science and Technology
People's Republic of China

N0.306 September 10,2002

* Three Major Strategies for International Competition

* More Cooperation with International Communities

* Robotic High Tech Industry Development

* Improved Test-tube Baby Technology

* Mainland Animals Walked to Taiwan

* China Resources II Works Properly

* The World Science Park Conference in Beijing in 2004


Three Major Strategies for International Competition

Xu Guanhua, the Chinese Minister of Science and Technology recently pointed out that China's accession to WTO was of close relationship with its S&T development. On the basis of commodity trade regulated by WTO, S&T competition will find its expression in service trade and intellectual properties. In this sense, the economic competition in today's world is S&T competition. In this context, the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology will practice three major corresponding strategies.

The human resources strategy. China will strive to win over international high caliber talents. China will reform its personnel recruitment system by public bidder for major positions such as head of academy or institute and academic leaders; reform its S&T evaluation system. National S&T programs and projects shall make discovering, training and stabilizing high caliber personnel as one of their major check-up indicators; reform S&T management system, establish open, mobile and competitive mechanism and increase the proportion of funds allocated for mobile personnel in the total R&D budget; according to the needs for implementing major dedicated projects, enhance the recruitment of overseas top notch personnel and make all possible supporting conditions available for them; encourage high tech businesses to reform their personnel recruitment and compensation system; explore different incentive means including equity and futures holding so as to fully reflect the innovation values of R&D personnel and management.

The patent strategy. China will strengthen its management of intellectual properties. At present we shall not only enhance our awareness of protecting intellectual properties but more importantly we shall establish the mechanism encouraging the creation, protection and application of intellectual properties. Major national R&D programs such as 863 shall make patent as a goal and approval indicator. Before establishing a project and in the middle of implementation, intellectual property status both at home and abroad shall be analyzed and relevant approaches to overcoming patent barriers proposed.

The technical standardization strategy. China will perfect its technical standardization system. Firstly, China will pay great attention to the changes and development tendency of the world wide technical barriers and track after current technology policies of the major developed and developing nations and their potential development; secondly, by way of reform, China will support relevant authorities to establish national standardization research institute and organize and coordinate social forces such as enterprises, universities and research institutes to study standardization issues ; and lastly China will establish dedicated standardization projects among the current 12 national major programs under implementation and firmly support relevant authorities to develop and work out high tech standards to China's advantage and in China's advantageous fields.

More Cooperation with International Communities

Xu Guanhua, the Chinese Minister of Science and Technology expressed at the annual meeting of China Association for Science and Technology held recently that China would strengthen its opening to the outside world while doing so domestically. The Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) has decided to support the increasing involvement of Chinese research institutions in international multilateral cooperation, including international human genome project where China has already been a part and European global positioning system project, controlled nuclear fusion project and other projects related to global environment changes that China will be part of. In the meantime, MOST will encourage international academic organizations to set up their representative offices in China. Mr. Xu added that there are currently 3000 international academic institutions in the world while less than 10 of them have opened their offices in China. MOST will provide necessary operational funds and other favored policies to support international academic organizations to set up their offices and run their academic activities in China. In addition, MOST will encourage more and more Chinese scientists to work for international academic institutions so as to share fund support and carry out academic exchanges.

 Robotic High Tech Industry Development

On Sept. 6, 2002 the spokesperson of the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology disclosed at a press conference held in Xiamen that through a decade effort, China's high tech R&D and associated industrialization have healthily gone into fast gear. As a result, China has witnessed the emergence of its domestic industries with proprietary competitiveness and more and more high tech businesses of competitive innovation capability mushroomed.

In the field of information technology, the research and development of super computers have realized a great leap from individual computer units to super computer network system. At present the Chinese home-made computer systems have found extensive applications in the fields of research and development and automation. The successful development of large digital switching system has made the home-made switchers enjoy dominating market share and their products are heading for international market. The extensive commercial applications of optic-fiber telecommunication system have laid technical foundations for the construction of high speed information highway in China. China's proprietary third generation mobile telecommunication technology has applauded for its remarkable progress and its TD-SCDMA standard has become one of the three international standards for the third generation mobile telecommunication.

Recent years have witnessed the fast development of China's telecommunication market. As of April 2002, China's mobile telephone subscribers have reached 167 million in number and fixed telephone subscribers 191 million, ranked the first and second place respectively in the world. The huge market potentials have constituted great stimulus to the development of China's telecommunication technologies and associated industries.

In the field of biotechnology, major achievements have been made in agricultural biotechnological developments such as bi-linear hybrid rice and pest resistance cottons. China became part of international human genome project and finished its sequencing assignment as scheduled. In addition, China have worked out ten new genetic engineering drugs or vaccines and made them available in the market.

In the area of automation, computer assisted design and integrated manufacturing techniques have found extensive demonstration and applications, which greatly upgraded the integration level and products' design, development and manufacturing capacity of Chinese businesses. China has developed its own robot series that are well serving auto manufacturing, petrochemistry and other areas. In the field of new materials, Chinese scientists have landed new findings on non linear optical crystal, nanometer and superconductor materials.

It is briefed that since 1991, China has established 53 high tech industrialization parks at national level. In 2001, the total revenues created by these high tech parks reached RMB 1,192.8 billion with a total industrial output of RMB 1,011.7 billion. These high tech giants have recorded an average annual growth of 60% or above simply in a time period of one decade. High tech parks have become the major bases for developing and nurturing China's high tech businesses as well as R&D entrepreneurs and modern management personnel.  


Improved Test-tube Baby Technology

Recently the People's Hospital under Wuhan University has successfully performed its 4th generation test-tube baby technique. The new development is a desirable progress for contriving female patients who are of limited ovulation function but with poor quality or activity eggs due to the reasons of aging or poor health. The new technique may allow scientists to replace the patient's ovoplasm with the one collected from another healthy woman through microscope technology so as to enhance the activity of eggs and improve the success of test-tube process. The treated egg cells will be married with sperms externally and be injected into the body of the contriving woman. Thus it is also named the ovoplasm replacing technique.

It is briefed that the women with poor quality and activity eggs are only recorded with a 10 percent success rate for getting pregnant with old test-tube techniques. Now the improved technique may make the same indicator go up to 40% or above.

When being asked about the possible social and ethic arguments such as who will be the mother of the baby, experts expressed that the matter determining genetic features are the chromosomes of sperm and egg cells rather than ovoplasm which is only responsible for nurturing cell nucleus and keeping cells alive. The replacement of ovoplasm will not change any genetic information and the egg cells will fully represent the genetic features of the contrived woman.

Mainland Animals Walked to Taiwan

The latest archaeological studies have shown that in the remote ancient time, Zhoushan Archipelagoes were physically connected with Taiwan and some ancient animals originated from Beijing Zhoukoudian made their migration to Taiwan via  Zhoushan.

Not long ago, Hu Lianrong, Director of Zhoushan Municipal Museum took a number of ancient animal bones unearthed in Zhoushan seashore area to Peking University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) for verification. Prof. Qi Guoqin and others of the Institute of Paleovertebrate and Paleoanthropology under CAS confirmed on the basis of their study of these bones that they were the ivory of ancient elephant dated back to 25,000 years ago and lower jaw bones of buffalo and rhinoceros and head bone and horns of water deer.

Prof. Qi expressed that in the late 1960s, similar ancient animal bones were unearthed in Taiwan. In 1995, he went to Taiwan and made studies of ancient animals and men there for three years. He said the findings collected from both mainland and Taiwan presented us a basic road map showing the migration route of the remote ancient animals from the north to the south.

It is briefed that these ancient animals who lived over Beijing Zhoukoudian area and Huaihe River Valley were forced to migrate southward as climate became warmer in the Quaternary Ice Age. They traveled over the coastal plains and eventually reached Taiwan via Zhoushan.

Head of Zhoushan Municipal Museum briefed that about 15,000 and 20,000 years ago, Zhoushan's sea level was 130m lower than its current level. The study made by Wang Pinxian, an academician and marine geologist working for Shanghai Tongji University also demonstrated that Zhoushan was 470 km away from shoreline and the ancient river bed of Yangtze River went from Zhoushan into the sea. The repeated discovery of ancient animal bones in Zhoushan proved that Zhoushan used to be a plain close to sea at that time and was physically connected with Shandong, Jiangsu, Fujian and Taiwan.

  Ancient Matters Telling Life Origin

The research team headed by Prof. Li Jianghai of Peking University has recently found the so-called “black chimney” rock samples dated back to 2.5 billion years ago. These samples have gained the acknowledgement of the U.S. and Canadian scientists, which means scientific community has obtained the ancient matters to verify life origin.

The so-called black chimney is a pillar shaped vertical mound cumulated by sulfides such as pyrite, blend and brass. Surrounding the black chimney is the only habitat where self-support living creatures can grow and the hot fluid exhausted from the chimney may turn the ocean floor gas into biochemical energy.

Prof. Li believed that black chimney serves as natural lab for studying internal earth and life evolution and is of important impacts on global climate change, sea water chemistry and ocean heat balance. The obtained geological records of ancient black chimney are of important scientific and economic values. His team will analyze and test the rocks from different disciplinary angles so as to understand the earlier geological evolution of the oceans, look for relevant record on ancient life and test the scenarios such as that life originates from the adjacent areas of black chimneys on sea floor.

It is reported that a cross area sitting between Wutai Mount and Taihang Mount has preserved a complete geological record of such black chimneys which are made of sea floor sedimentary layer, sulfide cumulating for the formation of black chimneys, mineral fluid path and serpentinite. With complete rock types and intact structures, the black chimney will be of great values for unveiling the life origin and evolution in earlier oceans, earlier earth heat releasing mechanism and formation of metallic ores. 


China Resources II Works Properly

September 1 is the birthday marking the two-year age of China Resources II, a Chinese satellite with a designed life for two years. It is briefed that so far aml the systems aboard the satellite are running properly and smoothly with stable performance and the satellite will continue its operation in space though it has already gone beyond its designed life-span.

China Resources II is China's first generation remote sensing satellite designed mainly for national land mapping, urban planning, crop yield estimation, disaster monitoring and space scientific experiments.

Launched on Sept. 1,2000 from Taiyuan Satellite Launching Center, the satellite started to work and send its pictures back to the earth station in the following day. During its two-year in-the-orbit flight, the satellite has worked properly and sent huge amount of satellite images to the earth receiving station. These pictures are sharp clear and carrying rich information, satisfactory to the designing requirements.

China Resources II is a solar synchronous public satellite platform of broad application perspectives. Its service systems such as power source, internal management, heat control and measurement capability have demonstrated fine reliability, full function and strong performance with their indicators reaching internationally advanced level, though its effective payload system sits at domestic top level.

The World Science Park Conference in Beijing in 2004

At the 19th World Conference of International Association of Science Park held in Quebec, Canada on Sept. 5, 2002, Beijing Zhongguancun Science and Technology Park successfully won its sponsorship for the 21st World Conference of the Association.

Founded in 1984 and headquartered in Spain, the Association is aiming at promoting the exchanges and cooperation among the science parks in different countries. Up to date, the Association has 200 and more members with 16 of them from China. The Association has also opened its representative office in Beijing. The 19th session of the Association's World Conference opened on Sept. 3 2002 in Quebec with the participation of 400 and odd representatives from 54 countries. The representatives from Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen were also present on the occasion.

China's New S&T Hall

It is reported that China will make the debut of its new Science and Technology Hall at Beijing Olympic Park in the year 2006. As is revealed by Wang Yusheng, Director of current Chinese Science and Technology Hall, the new Hall is designed with a floor space of 120,000 square meters and functions for exhibition, experiment and training. The new Hall will not only make all its exhibits the world first class but also make experimental and training areas available for visitors.

In the meantime, the new Hall will be equipped with recreational, shopping, catering and parking sections.

It is briefed that the new Hall will break its ground in 2003. The construction of its major structures and development of exhibits will be kept abreast so as to make the Hall come into service in 2006. Meanwhile, the new Hall will retain some space for the use of the Organizing Committee of 2008 Olympic Games. The old Hall will remain open to the public while the new one is being under construction.

       Comments or inquiries on editorial matters or Newsletter content should be directed to:Mr. Cheng Jiayi, Department of International Cooperation, MOST 15B, Fuxing Road Beijing 100862, PR China  Tel: (8610)68512650 Fax: (8610) 68512594