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Chinese vice president's Italy tour to deepen science, technology cooperation, says minister

06-01-2011 20:50 BJT

BEIJING, June 1 (Xinhua) -- China and Italy will create closer cooperation in their scientific and technological industries during Vice President Xi Jinping's upcoming visit to Italy, a senior Chinese official said.

Xi will pay visits to Italy, Cuba, Uruguay and Chile from June 1 to 13, during which he will also attend a ceremony marking the 150th anniversary of Italy's unification.

"The tour will be of great significance in promoting the Sino-Italian comprehensive strategic partnership, and will also push forward bilateral cooperation in science and technology," Chinese Science and Technology Minister Wan Gang said.

"Cooperation in science and technology is an important part of the Sino-Italian comprehensive strategic partnership," Wan said.

He said that scientific and technological cooperation have seen continuous improvement since China and Italy forged diplomatic ties in 1970.

Italy was one of the first Western countries to sign an intergovernmental agreement with China on scientific and technological cooperation, with the two sides signing an agreement in 1978.

"In the wake of the dawn of the 21st century, bilateral scientific and technological cooperation has developed continuously. Italy has become an important partner for China in this regard," Wan said.

The two countries have signed over 40 cooperative agreements on scientific and technological cooperation between governmental departments, Wan said.

COOPERATION BEARS FRUITS

Wan said China and Italy value their cooperation discovering new frontiers for scientific research, while also focusing on promoting sustainable development and the improvement of living standards.

Wan said that China and Italy signed a joint agreement in 2006 concerning cooperation in space technology, which boosted bilateral cooperation in such areas as high-energy astrophysics and disaster prevention and mitigation.

Environmental cooperation has also been a highlight of bilateral relations between China and Italy, Wan said, noting that the two countries worked together to research new methods of waste management in the reconstruction of China's quake-hit Gansu Province, as well as collaborative solar energy projects in rural areas in China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

Italy has also played an active part in China's International Traditional Chinese Medicine Program for Cooperation in Science and Technology, Wan said, noting that a Sino-Italian joint laboratory was established in China's northern port city of Tianjin.

"Scientific and technological cooperation gives a great impetus to bilateral education exchange and cooperation," Wan said.

INNOVATION LEADS TO FUTURE COOPERATION

"China and Italy highly value the supporting and leading roles played by innovation, and the two sides share a strong aspiration to deepen their cooperation," Wan said.

Wan said that innovation will be the key to promoting the development of both countries as the world at large continues to transform and change.

China and Italy have set up a design and innovation center in China's financial hub of Shanghai, which will allow both countries to contribute to research on electric automobiles and urban construction.

The two countries have also decided to establish a technological transfer center in Beijing, where they will focus on areas such as agriculture, biomedicine and environmental protection.

He added that the two countries will also cooperate in the development of renewable energy and environmentally friendly housing in China's central and western regions.

"China and Italy complement each other. We have broad prospects for bilateral cooperation in joint research and development, technological transfers and the commercialization of scientific research findings," Wan said.

"With the concerted efforts of both governments, Sino-Italian scientific and technological cooperation is bound to have a rosy future," he said.

Editor:Zheng Limin |Source: Xinhua

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