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China–Hong Kong sci-tech meeting reaffirms ties

The Mainland-Hong Kong Science & Technology Co-operation Committee meet is part of plan for Hong Kong to further foster innovation capabilities with the Mainland.

The sixth meeting of the Mainland-Hong Kong Science & Technology Co-operation Committee was held in Chengdu on Tuesday.

It was co-chaired by Secretary for Commerce & Economic Development Gregory So and Vice-Minister of Science & Technology Dr Cao Jianlin.

Mr So visited a research institute and a laboratory to promote collaboration and learn more about science and technology in Sichuan and the western region of the Mainland.

The Innovation & Technology Commission has sought agreement from the Ministry of Science & Technology to start work on recommending Hong Kong experts participate in the National Science & Technology Programmes Expert Database.

The first round is a pilot scheme inviting six universities that are also Mainland-Hong Kong Science & Technology Co-operation Committee members to recommend Hong Kong experts to the Expert Database. The commission will forward qualified applications to the ministry for final approval.

The Hong Kong Government has approved the plan of providing each of the 12 Partner State Key Laboratories with financial assistance of up to a total of $10 million for a five-year period through the Innovation & Technology Fund to further enhance their research capabilities.

The ministry agreed the Partner State Key Laboratory of Emerging Infectious Diseases can open a Shenzhen branch in the University of Hong Kong’s Shenzhen Hospital to promote medical exchanges, and reinforce research and development collaboration.

“It is in the spirit of the National 12th Five-Year Plan for Hong Kong to further enhance its collaboration with the Mainland, which also provides a new opportunity for Hong Kong’s science and technology development,” Mr So said.

"In its recently announced National 12th Five-Year Plan on Science & Technology Development, the ministry also reaffirmed its support for Hong Kong and Macau research talents and institutions to participate in national science and technology programmes, as well as jointly set up laboratories and research and development centres. This is a golden opportunity for enhancing science and technology collaboration, according to a government report.

“On regional co-operation, the Outline of the Plan for the Reform & Development of the Pearl River Delta and the Framework Agreement on Hong Kong-Guangdong Co-operation set a new scene for collaboration between Hong Kong and Guangdong. On the other hand, Hong Kong-Shenzhen co-operation serves as a case example to demonstrate our joint efforts in promoting regional innovation under the Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong axis.”

The committee agreed to follow up on the initiatives of setting up the National High-tech Industrialisation Base & Chinese National Engineering Research Centre in Hong Kong, promoting matching and collaboration between science and technology parks on the two sides, and enhancing co-operation and exchanges between the productivity councils.

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