On February 20, 2019, Zhang Jianguo, Vice Minister of the Ministry of Science and Technology and Administrator of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, met with newly-appointed Georgian Ambassador to China Archil Kalandia. The two sides exchanged views and reached relevant consensus on China-Georgia cooperation in science, technology and innovation.
Vice Minister Zhang Jianguo briefed the Georgian guests on the status of China‘s science and technology development and international science and technology cooperation. He said that the Chinese government is vigorously implementing an innovation-driven development strategy to strengthen the role of STI in promoting economic development, accelerate the transition from conventional growth drivers to new ones and speed up efforts to build China into an innovative country. Vice Minister Zhang Jianguo remarked that with growing inputs into science and technology, China has markedly improved its research strengths. He noted that China is currently strengthening international cooperation in STI in an all-round way and that the Chinese Ministry of science and technology will continue to actively implement the action plan proposed by President Xi Jinping in the First Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and make greater and more resolute efforts to implement opening-up and cooperation in STI with the outside world in a broader and deeper level. Vice Minister Zhang Jianguo proposed to restart the regular meeting mechanism of the China-Georgia Committee on Science and Technology Cooperation, explore on the possibility of holding the second meeting of the China-Georgia Committee on S&T Cooperation in due time, further expand people-to-people exchange in the field of science and technology, and push forward specific project cooperation between research institutes and universities of the two countries in priority areas agreed upon by both sides.
Ambassador Archil Kalandia spoke highly of the friendly relations between China and Georgia and the potential of cooperation between the two countries in the field of STI. He remarked that the two sides enjoy a sound foundation for cooperation in the field of STI and that the active exchanges and cooperation between the relevant research institutes and think tanks of the two sides are particularly impressive. Ambassador Archil Kalandia said that the Georgian side will continue to support and participate in the construction of the Belt & Road, actively respond to President Xi Jinping’s initiative on the Belt & Road Science, Technology and Innovation Action Plan, and take it as an opportunity to strengthen cooperation with China in co-building R&D centers and joint laboratories and push forward the sustainable development of China-Georgia cooperation in science and technology. He suggested that the two sides renew the 1993 China-Georgian Agreement on Intergovernmental Cooperation in Science and Technology, establish a new mechanism for China-Georgia cooperation in science and technology, continuously expand the breadth and depth of bilateral cooperation in the field of STI, and usher in a new chapter of mutual benefit and win-win outcome.
Ye Dongbai, DG of the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Science and Technology, attended the meeting.