China Sets R&D Targets for 2020 More About "SET" in China


BEIJING - China expects knowledge-intensive services to contribute 20 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) by 2020, up from 15.6 percent in 2015, according to the country's five-year plan for science and technology progress by 2020.

The State Council plan, published on Monday, lists targets for science and technology from 2016 to 2020 as well as government action to help realize the targets.

Total factor productivity, of which technology is a sub-set, aims to account for 60 percent of growth in 2020, up from 55.3 percent last year.

The number of patent applications in 2020 is expected to be double that of 2015, according to the plan.

By 2020, out of every 10,000 workers, 60 will be engaged in research and development, up from 48.5 in 2015, the plan said.


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Priorities for the government over the next five years include directing resources to strategic areas, fostering creativity, creating a favorable policy environment and removing barriers to innovation.

The country will spend more resources in research areas key to its national strength and security, including computer chip, integrated circuit equipment, broadband mobile telecommunication, digital machinery, nuclear power, genetic modification, water pollution control, new medicines, manned space programs and lunar exploration.

China also hopes to make breakthroughs in areas such as deep-sea exploration, quantum computing and brain science. Agriculture, computing, green energy, biology and environmental protection will also receive more attention. The government promises greater support for basic research, science labs and international research.

China will take an active part in the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) project and the Square Kilometer Array (SKA) telescope project, according to the plan.

The plan lists measures to improve legislation on research and development, streamline fund raising and raise the efficiency of governance.

The government will encourage enterprises to invest more in R&D and offer preferential policies to knowledge-intensive startups while pushing universities and research institutes to improve efficiency.

China will also expand cooperation in science and technological development with other countries, especially those along the Belt and Road.

The government will encourage joint research projects between Chinese and foreign institutes and enterprises to attract more high-level foreign experts to work in China.

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