Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation on the morning of May 14, 2017.
Xi said that China will enhance cooperation on innovation with other countries and launch the Belt and Road Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation Action Plan. The Plan consists of the Science and Technology People-to-People Exchange Initiative, the Joint Laboratory Initiative, the Science Park Cooperation Initiative and the Technology Transfer Initiative. Accordingly in the coming five years, China will offer 2,500 short-term research visits to China for young foreign scientists, train 5,000 foreign scientists, engineers and managers, and set up 50 joint laboratories.
He also noted the aim to build the Belt and Road into a road of innovation, highlighting innovation as an important driver of development. “The Belt and Road Initiative is new by nature and we need to encourage innovation in pursuing this initiative,” he said. “We should pursue innovation-driven development and intensify cooperation in frontier areas such as digital economy, artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and quantum computing, and advance the development of big data, cloud computing and smart cities so as to turn them into a digital silk road of the 21st century. We should spur the full integration of science and technology into industries and finance, improve the environment for innovation and pool resources for innovation. We should create space and build workshops for young people of various countries to cultivate entrepreneurship in this age of the Internet and help realize their dreams.”