China vows to ratchet up technology R&D, channeling more resources to support young talent: government minister
Published: Mar 05, 2024 02:10 PM
China's Minister of Science and Technology Yin Hejun Photo: IC

China's Minister of Science and Technology Yin Hejun Photo: IC

China's Minister of Science and Technology Yin Hejun pledged on Tuesday to work out favorable policies and provide more resources to support young talent and scientific researchers under the age of 35, and try to optimize China's talent reserve and their training mechanism. 

Youth talent training in science and technology sector should be emphasized as a long-term strategy, said Yin during a media interview session after the opening of the annual session of the National People's Congress (NPC), at the Great Hall of the People. He said that the ministry will offer more assistance to young researchers. 

The ministry encourages qualified research institutions and the companies to grant more than half of their basic scientific research budget to support young researchers under 35, and list the training of young talent as a major assessment factor for gauging leading labs in the country. 

"The number of the national key research and development programs led by young scientists under the age of 40 has reached more than 1,100 now, accounting for over 20 percent of the total programs. Young scientists can be seen across a slew of leading programs including the BeiDou Satellite Navigation System, the Lunar Exploration Project and the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical radio Telescope," said Yin. 

In 2023, China's scientific and technological research and development (R&D) investment surpassed 3.3 trillion yuan ($458. 5 billion), up 8.1 percent year-on-year. Multiple homegrown tech innovations were made in sectors including quantum technology, integrated circuit, artificial intelligence, bio-pharmaceuticals, and new-energy exploration.

In addition, the world's new generation IV nuclear power plant has started operation, China's self-developed C919 aircraft has started commercial operation, and exports of the "new three items" - new-energy vehicles (NEVs), lithium-ion batteries, and photovoltaic products have surged - indicating that the country's tech innovations have significantly enhanced the competitiveness of country's manufacturing sector, while generating new quality productive forces, Yin said.

Yin added that the Ministry of Science and Technology will continue to optimize government planning and designing to form a new and advanced R&D force in China.

Global Times