More scope for sci-tech innovation pledged

2024-03-06 08:52:06China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

Substantial progress was made in the research and development of high-end equipment last year in China, such as aircraft engines, gas turbines, and 4th-generation nuclear power units, according to the Government Work Report delivered at the second session of the 14th National People's Congress.

A stream of innovations emerged in frontier areas such as artificial intelligence and quantum technology. The volume of contracted technology transactions grew by 28.6 percent. These achievements have further enhanced the capacity for innovation-driven development, the report said.

Last year, the overall performance of China's innovation system continued to improve, according to a report by the National Development and Reform Commission, with spending on research and development reached 3.33 trillion yuan ($458.4 billion), an increase of 8.1 percent, accounting for 2.64 percent of China's GDP, and funding for basic research accounting for 6.65 percent of all R&D expenditures.

"The number of valid Chinese invention patents issued in China had reached 4.015 million by the end of 2023, with over 40 percent of which being high-value invention patents, making China the first country in the world surpassing the four-million threshold," the NDRC said.

Major scientific and technological innovations include the manned spacecraft Shenzhou XVI returned safely and Shenzhou XVII was successfully launched, the world's first rocket powered by liquid oxygenmethane fuel flew into orbit, the deep-sea manned submersible Fendouzhe reached the deepest ocean trench, the C919 airliner and the first Chinese-built large cruise ship entered commercial service, China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope found key evidence for the existence of nanohertz gravitational waves.

China will strive to modernize the industrial system and develop new quality productive forces at a faster pace, give full rein to the leading role of innovation, spur industrial innovation by making innovations in science and technology and press ahead with new industrialization, so as to raise total factor productivity, steadily foster new growth drivers and strengths, and promote a new leap forward in the productive forces, the government work report said.

In order to invigorate China through science and education and consolidate the foundations for high-quality development, this year, China will develop a high-quality education system, move faster to boost self-reliance and strength in science and technology, and develop and make the best use of talent in all sectors.

This year, the country will continue to strengthen basic research, provide support for a number of innovation centers, teams, and priority areas, deploy and implement a number of major national science and technology projects, continue to improve the national laboratories operation and management system, the NDRC said.

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