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Country to inject vitality into high-quality growth

By Ma Si and Cheng Yu | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-05-28 23:58

A woman tries out metaverse virtual human technology at the exhibition area of 2023 ZGC Forum held in Beijing, May 24, 2023. [Photo/VCG]

China will make a greater contribution to addressing global challenges and buoying the world's economic recovery, as the country injects new vitality into pursuing high-quality development and deeper opening-up, international organizations, company executives and scientists said.

Highlighting that decoupling would be a "big mistake", they praised China's technological advances and called for deeper international cooperation in driving innovation and dealing with uncertainties such as supply chain disruptions, at the ongoing 2023 Zhongguancun Forum.

"Decoupling is a wrongheaded idea and a big mistake. The United States would be foolish to try to delink from China," said Denis Simon, president of the Alliance of Global Talent Organizations, in an interview with China Daily on the sidelines of the forum.

Such attempts will make the US unable to benefit from China's achievement in solving problems, which are also of concern to US people and to people around the world, Simon said.

Global challenges such as climate change, food security and potential future pandemics "require us to work together if we want to come up with any meaningful solution", he said.

In a video speech to the forum in Beijing, which runs through Tuesday, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates said China has an incredible mix of expertise and experience, as well as long-standing investment in scientific and technological innovation.

China will be able to make unique contributions by sharing its technologies and its experience, Gates said.

Nick Fowler, chief academic officer at Elsevier, a Netherlands-based academic publishing company that owns prestigious medical journals such as The Lancet and Cell, said cooperation is vital to achieving scientific breakthroughs.

There is enduring strength in the China-US research relationship, despite noises about the two countries decoupling, according to a report by Elsevier and the Association of Pacific Rim Universities, a network of leading universities in the Americas, Asia and Australasia.

The Field Weighted Citation Impact — a proxy measure of research quality — of China-US co-authored publications reached almost two, which is twice the world average, and higher than the performance of either China or the US alone, the report said. "This shows that much could be achieved by acting together for the common good through research collaboration," Fowler said.

The comments came after China made steady progress in technological innovation. China climbed to 11th in the 2022 Global Innovation Index, up from 34th in 2012, and was the only middle-income economy in the top 30, according to the World Intellectual Property Organization, which compiles the index.

China's innovation prowess, for instance, is prominent in the photovoltaics industry, which secures it a pivotal position in global supply chains.

Martin Green, a professor of photovoltaics at Australia's University of New South Wales, told China Daily that "the world is going to be dependent on China for the next five years, at least, to supply the panels that the world needs".

"The Chinese industry is quite adventurous and willing to adopt new technology, (and) the pace of photovoltaics has never been quicker than it is at the moment," said Green, who is also widely known as the "godfather of photovoltaics".

China's commitment to a higher-level of opening-up is also injecting more confidence into multinational companies.

Hubertus Troska, member of the board of management of Mercedes-Benz Group, responsible for Greater China, said in a video message played at the forum that he is confident that Beijing, with its clear commitment to continuing with reform and opening-up policy and constantly improving business environment, will remain an attractive choice for foreign investors.

"Our joint venture in Beijing has become the largest production site of Mercedes-Benz in the world, and our investment over the years has not only covered the expansion of production but also enhancement in local research and development along the whole automotive value chain," he added.

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