On December 10, 2018, Wang Zhigang, Minister and Party Secretary of the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) met with a delegation headed by Bernard Larrouturou, Director General of Research and Innovation of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation of France (MESRI). The two sides introduced the status quo of science and technology development in their respective countries, exchanged views on science, technology and innovation (STI), and reached broad agreement on preparing for the 14th China-France Joint Commission Meeting on Science and Technology Cooperation and promoting China-France cooperation.
Minister Wang Zhigang welcomed Director General Bernard Larrouturou and his delegation to MOST. He said that the focus of the meeting was to fulfill the tasks assigned by the two heads of state and prepare for the 14th China-France Joint Commission Meeting on Science and Technology Cooperation to be held in the first quarter of 2019. Minister Wang Zhigang remarked that France is the first major western country to establish a comprehensive strategic partnership with China and the two countries boast long-term and close exchanges and cooperation in the field of science and technology. He said that the two countries share similar ideas and common aspiration to promote collaboration in science and technology. Minister Wang Zhigang pointed out that since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, the strategy on innovation-driven development has been implemented, with STI playing an important leading role in economic and social development. He said that China has carried out extensive international cooperation, integrated into the global innovation network, strengthened efforts to build an innovation ecosystem, and formulated and improved laws, regulations and policies to create a favorable environment for STI. Minister Wang Zhigang said that one important topic for the two countries to consider is how to grasp opportunities and tackle challenges of the 4th Industrial Revolution. Both sides should fully leverage the planning and coordination role of the China-France Joint Commission Meeting on Science and Technology Cooperation and thoroughly explore bilateral cooperation in projects, mechanisms, platform building and personnel exchanges, and form specific plans for full deliberation at the next joint commission meeting so as to push China-France cooperation in science and technology to a new level.
Director General Bernard Larrouturou firstly conveyed the apology of Minister Frédérique Vidal of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation for being unable to visit China as scheduled and postponing the 14th joint commission meeting due to urgent matters at home. The French side expressed heartfelt thanks to China for its understanding and arrangements. He said that the French government attaches great importance to STI and is committed to strengthening synergy among research institutions, universities and enterprises, promoting the commercialization of research results and emphasizing the role of social sciences in science and technology innovation. He said that France appreciates China‘s achievements in the field of STI in recent years, and is willing to expand exchanges and cooperation in areas of common interest and work with China to make the next joint commission meeting a success.
The two sides agreed that the 14th joint commission meeting to be held in the first quarter of 2019 will inject new impetus into bilateral STI cooperation, deepen exchanges and cooperation, and make positive contributions to the world‘s economic and social development.
Ye Dongbai, Director-General of the Department of International Cooperation, Xu Jing, Director-General of the Department of Strategic Planning, Ye Yujiang, Director-General of the Department of Basic Research, Qin Yong, Director-General of the Department of High and New Technology, and Lan Yujie, Director-General of the Department of Science and Technology for Rural Development of MOST were present at the meeting.