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Premier: China values voices from foreign experts

Updated: Jan 18,2020 05:23 PM

China needs extensive cooperation with the international community and strong participation from foreign experts as the country advances its modernization and development in opening-up, Premier Li Keqiang said.

He made the remarks in a symposium with representatives of foreign experts working in China at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Jan 17.

Jan 17 marks the Xiaonian festival of 2019 — the 23rd day of the last month in the Chinese lunar calendar, which indicates the start of the countdown to Chinese New Year, he noted as the meeting began. The Premier then thanked experts for their support and help with China’s reform, opening-up and modernization drive, extending greetings to them and their families for the upcoming New Year.

"We are very willing to listen to your opinions and suggestions, which are valuable for careful study," he added.

In promoting scientific and technological innovation, Dan Shechtman, winner of the 2011 Nobel Prize in chemistry and professor at the Technion — Israel Institute of Technology, suggested the government should provide more financial support for basic research and start-ups with innovative ideas, encourage young people to have in-depth communications with world-renowned scientists and attract more of them into research teams focusing on frontier areas of science.

"International collaboration is crucial, and enhancing bilateral cooperation in all fields will bring win-win results for China and the UK," said Jim McDonald, president of the Royal Academy of Engineering and principal of the University of Strathclyde.

His suggestions pertain to the two countries’ cooperation in engineering technology, including the launch of joint programs and conferences to share experience in developing talents.

After thanking them for their valuable suggestions, the Premier stressed China will open wider in science and technology, adding national boundaries should not hinder scientific exchanges because erecting barriers would not benefit technological progress.

In transforming and upgrading China’s economy, innovation plays a significant role, he said, and innovation counts on science, technology and skilled talent.

He added China's development requires a peaceful international landscape, and the country will unswervingly safeguard world peace, uphold multilateralism, support free and fair trade and promote cooperation with other countries in further opening-up, achieving mutually beneficial results.

Premier Li said China will continue to implement the institutional tax cuts this year and significantly reduce general expenditures, particularly in administration.

"But our input in technology will only be enhanced, as it is the foundation and pillar of China's future development," he said.

Premier Li said China will continuously expand opening-up in the technology field, and increase cooperation with the international community. He vowed more proactive, open and effective policies will be introduced to facilitate foreign experts' work and life in China.

The discussion was frank, and the foreign experts provided their suggestions on topics such as talent cultivation, cultural exchange, finance and energy.

Premier Li said all advice will be valued and the government will offer direct communication between related departments and the experts.