On May 17, 2022, the 15th meeting of the China-EU Joint Steering Committee on Science and Technology Cooperation was successfully held via video link. Zhang Guangjun, Vice Minister of Science and Technology of China, Wang Hongjian, Chargé d’Affaires of the Chinese Mission to the EU, and Nicolas Chapuis, Ambassador of the EU to China, attended and addressed the meeting. The meeting was co-chaired by Dai Gang, Director-General of the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Science and Technology of China, and Maria Cristina Russo, Director for Global Approach & International Cooperation in R&I in DG Research and Innovation of the European Commission.
Vice Minister Zhang Guangjun pointed out that this meeting aims to implement the consensus reached at the 23rd China-EU Summit and is thus of great significance. Advancing cooperation in science, technology and innovation is a common option and important priority for both China and the EU. China has always regarded the EU and European countries as important partners for science, technology and innovation cooperation. The two sides enjoy a solid foundation for their cooperation in this field. It is driven by realistic needs and delivers practical results. The two sides should take a long-term perspective, bear in mind the future of humanity, focus on the original purpose of scientific research, and continue to boost the connectivity of innovation vision, innovation factors, research personnel and research infrastructure. The two sides could jointly launch the“China-EU Green Initiative” to address the challenges of global climate change, and deepen China-EU cooperation in science, technology and innovation.
Wang Hongjian, Chargé d’affaires of the Chinese Mission to the EU, noted that in tackling global challenges, science, technology and innovation provide the right path and international cooperation represents the only option. It is hoped that the representatives from both sides will have in-depth exchanges, strengthen strategic policy dialogue, build consensus and expand areas of cooperation, in order to give new impetus to the China-EU comprehensive strategic partnership.
Nicolas Chapuis, Ambassador of the EU to China, commended the important role played by science, technology and innovation cooperation in promoting China-EU relations. It is hoped that both sides will overcome the obstacles of the pandemic, further promote the mobility of Chinese and European researchers, improve the China-EU Co-funding Mechanism and encourage efficient cooperation in scientific research.
Delegates from both sides exchanged information on China’s 14th Five-Year Plan for Science, Technology and Innovation, the EU’s Global Approach to Research and Innovation and the Horizon Europe Program, discussed the status and progress of consultations on the Joint Roadmap for China-EU Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation, reported on the evaluation and implementation of the China-EU Co-funding Mechanism, and reviewed the achievements of cooperation in civil aviation. The meeting focused on the progress, achievements and next steps of the Food, Agriculture and Biotechnology (FAB) Flagship initiative and Climate Change and Biodiversity (CCB) Flagship initiative, and summarized and envisioned the achievements and future cooperation plans in multilateral cooperation, water research, inter-institutional cooperation, personnel exchange and other fields.
Representatives of the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and Ministry of Water Resources, the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Chinese National Natural Science Foundation of China, the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, the China Science and Technology Exchange Center, the Administrative Centre for China‘s Agenda 21, the National Center for Science & Technology Evaluation, and the Chinese Mission to the EU as well as the Directorate-General for Research and Innovation, Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development, and Directorate-General for Education, Youth, Sports and Culture of the European Commission, the EU Joint Research Center, the EU Delegation in China, and other relevant institutions from both sides attended the meeting. Science and technology counsellors from the Chinese embassies in Belgium, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, Spain and Italy, and science and technology diplomats from the embassies of Austria and other EU member states in China attended the meeting as observers.