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BRICS drives innovative competitiveness

Updated: Aug 30,2017 7:12 AM     Xinhua

BRICS countries have become an important force in promoting science and technology in the world and their innovative competitiveness is expected to maintain steady growth through 2030, according to a report released on Aug 29.

The report, compiled by China Science and Technology Exchange Center, offers a comprehensive analysis and rating of the national innovative competitiveness of the BRICS countries last year, with China on top, followed by Russia, South Africa, Brazil and India.

From 2001 to 2016, the BRICS as a whole showed a trend of rising innovative competitiveness, with China and Russia developing quickly, India in the middle, and Brazil and South Africa developing comparatively slowly, the report says.

The report predicts that the next five years will see BRICS members continuing to improve, with China and Russia maintaining strong growth momentum, India growing at a moderate rate, and Brazil and South Africa picking up speed gradually.

Zhao Xinli, deputy director of the center, said BRICS countries are a major force for promoting innovation in science and technology among developing countries and across the globe.

“The purpose of compiling the report is to provide a reference and support for the upcoming 2017 BRICS Summit in Xiamen, Fujian province,” he said. The summit is Sept 3 through Sept 5.

It took the center about six months to finish the report, with the participation of nearly 40 experts and scholars, including some from higher education institutions and think tanks of other BRICS members, according to the center.

The report shows that the research and development expenditures of the five members of BRICS accounted for about 17 percent of the world’s total R&D spending last year.

Their exports of high-tech products were valued at almost $6 trillion last year, accounting for 28 percent of the world’s total, the report says. Also, the total number of scientific papers published by BRICS members reached 590,000 last year, accounting for 27 percent of the world’s total.

All these indicate that the five countries are making increasingly greater contributions to, and greater impacts on, global innovation in science and technology, the report says.

BRICS countries have made great progress in innovation of science and technology, which is the foundation for modernization, said Liu Jianfei, executive deputy director of the Institute for International Strategic Studies of the Central Party School of the Communist Party of China.

“If such a growth momentum among BRICS members continues, about 3 billion people (the total population of BRICS countries) will enter modernization, and this will be a very inspiring and encouraging example for other developing countries,” he said.