Premier Li Keqiang delivers the Government Work Report at the opening meeting of the first session of the 13th National People's Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Monday. (XU JINGXING / CHINA DAILY)
BEIJING - China will enhance strength in science and technology in the coming years to create more opportunities for itself and the world.
"China will do more to implement the innovation-driven development strategy", Premier Li Keqiang said Monday when delivering a government work report at the first session of the 13th National People's Congress.
Li said that application-oriented basic research would be strengthened, a number of science and technology innovation programs be launched, and a number of top national laboratories be set up this year.
During the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in October, President Xi Jinping said innovation was the primary driving force behind development and the strategic underpinning for building a modernized economy.
China aims to make itself a country of innovators, according to Xi.
At a press conference held Saturday on the sidelines of the session, Wan Gang, minister of science and technology, said China is taking a leading position in strategic hi-tech sectors.
Major achievements include the launch of the Tiangong-2 space lab, the Jiaolong deep-sea manned submersible, the Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST), launch of dark matter probe satellite Wukong and the quantum science satellite Mozi, and the test flight for airliner C919.
China has also been the world leader in applications for invention patents for seven consecutive years. China's mainland held about 1.36 million such patents by the end of 2017, meaning on average 9.8 invention patents per 10,000 people, according to the State Intellectual Property Office.
Technological innovation has provided strong support for the nation's supply-side structural reform and significantly improved people's lives, Wan said, citing its role in mobile communication, pharmaceuticals, epidemic prevention, new energy vehicles as well as air pollution control and poverty alleviation.
China will enhance strength in science and technology in the coming years to create more opportunities for itself and the world
In addition, hi-tech will be applied to judicial organs.
"China will speed up the construction of smart courts," said Chief Justice Zhou Qiang when delivering a work report of the Supreme People's Court to the session.
Courts will better use artificial intelligence, voice recognition, big data and other digital technologies to improve trial and social governance, Zhou said.
Meanwhile, China also shares its scientific and technological achievements with the world.
China has sent experts and medicine to Africa to help locals fight against Ebola and Zika virus, offering Chinese wisdom and strength to tackle infectious diseases globally, Wan added.
"The technological advancement in China serves the world and benefits all human beings, rather than posing a threat to others," said Yang Changfeng, a member of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC).
Yang, also the chief designer of the BeiDou system, said China plans to send 18 BeiDou-3 satellites into space in 2018. The system is expected to provide navigation and positioning services to countries along the Belt and Road by late 2018.
Named after the Chinese term for the Big Dipper, the BeiDou project was formally launched in 1994, and began to serve China in 2000 and the Asia-Pacific region in 2012.
"The BeiDou system not only belongs to China, but the whole world," Yang said, noting that China has been promoting cooperation with Asia-Pacific nations, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the Arab League in the construction of BeiDou system.
The system plays an important role in telecommunications, transport, forest fire prevention and disaster prevention and relief. "We've been improving our services for our global users," Yang said, adding that they are promoting the system in international organizations.
Wang Shoujun, chairperson of China National Nuclear Cooperation (CNNC), a leading nuclear power company, said its nuclear projects in Pakistan had reached 4.63 million kilowatts, while installed capacity in operation exceeded 1.3 million kilowatts.
"These projects have effectively alleviated local power shortages, boosted the country's economic development, and improved the locals' living quality," said Wang, also a member of the National Committee of the CPPCC.
China's utility giant State Grid has already built up power supply facilities in countries along the Belt and Road routes, and exported advanced electricity supply equipment to 83 countries and regions across the world.
In December 2017, an ultra-high voltage power transmission project of the State Grid was put into operation in Brazil. The project helps transmit clean energy to southeastern load regions from northern Brazil, meeting the power demands of 22 million Brazilians each year.
From 2003 to 2017, the State Grid Jilin Province Electric Power Supply Company, a subsidiary of State Grid, built more than 2,000 kilometers of power lines and built or expanded more than 10 power stations in Ethiopia.
"There was severe power shortages in Ethiopia. Our power supply projects have solved the problem now," said Wang Jinhang, an NPC deputy and chairman of the company.
Wang said they also provided training for local workers, who would be able to do relevant work in their countries or other countries, which also helped create more jobs for locals.
"The rapid development of China boosts the flow of global labor. More Chinese companies have gone global, while more foreign workforces have come to China," said Hu Keyi, chief engineer of Jiangnan Shipyard Group.
"Don't be surprised when you see European employees in a Chinese shipyard today. They love their jobs and Chinese food, and also enjoy life in China," said Hu, a member of the National Committee of the CPPCC.