On August 19, the 5th China-Arab States Expo Technology Transfer and Innovation Cooperation Conference was held in Yinchuan, Ningxia, China. Government officials from science and technology departments, academicians and experts, representatives of research institutions, universities and enterprises from home and abroad interacted online and on-site on the theme of technology transfer and innovation cooperation to push China-Arab cooperation to a new high.
Establish Science and Technology Platform & Seek for Common Development
China is implementing the Belt and Road Science, Technology and Innovation Cooperation Action Plan, in which establishing the platform for international science and technology exchanges and cooperation, and promoting transfer and transformation of scientific research achievements are highlighted.
In 2015, China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center was established in Ningxia, which has undertaken the national mission of promoting science and technology cooperation between China and Arab countries.
In the past few years, the concept of science, technology and innovation cooperation under the framework of Belt and Road Initiative has been put into action with an increasing number of technology transfer between enterprises and more frequent transnational investments. Science and technology cooperation is becoming the pillar to promote China-Arab common prosperity and development.
The science, technology, people-to-people and cultural exchanges between China and the Belt and Road countries have seen a sharp rise in both scale and quality. The Belt and Road International Science Organization Alliance has been established with scientific research institutions from over 40 countries and regions. Eight bilateral technology transfer centers have been successively set up with Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, Egypt, Oman, etc., which formed a technology transfer collaborative network of nearly 5,000 members; win-win development and mutual benefit have been achieved through cooperation with Egypt, Iran, Mongolia and Thailand in launching or exploring the establishment of national-level science and technology parks.
“The past sessions of China-Arab States Technology Transfer and Innovation Cooperation Conference have played an important role in promoting the implementation of the Execution Plan for 2020-2022 of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum. Particularly, since its establishment the China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center has done a large amount of effective work in promoting China-Arab science and technology exchanges and cooperation.” said Haifa Abu Ghazaleh, Assistant Secretary General and head of the Social Affairs Sector of the League of Arab States. She noted that the Secretariat of the LAS will continue to support the construction of China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center and bilateral technology transfer sub-centers to build an integrated technology transfer network covering China and all Arab countries. She also expressed the expectation that the two sides will carry out extensive cooperation in the field of nanometer, biology, renewable energy, agriculture, biological food and medicine.
Mohamed Abdullahi, Minister of State of the Nigerian Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, said that with the support from China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center, the Working Base of China-Arab States Technology Transfer Collaborative Network in Nigeria was established in 2019. The Base proactively researched into Nigeria’s technological demands, and effectively matched them with the correspondent Chinese technology supplies, laying a sound foundation for deepening the bilateral cooperation. He hoped that the practical cooperation with China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center will make contributions to the transfer and transformation of applicable technologies and the scientific, technological and economic development of Nigeria.
Nashwa El-Bendary, Director of China-Arab States (AASTMT) Technology Transfer Center, looked forward to continuously deepening the bilateral cooperation and innovating cooperation modes. And she hoped that the technology transfer and innovation cooperation can cover more areas like smart electronics, robots, artificial intelligence applications, new energy and renewable energy, to open up a new chapter of China-Arab cooperation in science, technology and innovation .
Innovate Cooperation & Pursue Win-Win Result through World Interconnection
"The Belt and Road Initiative has been enriched by science and technology exchanges." Xiao Junzheng, Minister and DCM of the Chinese Embassy in Egypt said. The construction of China-Arab bilateral technology transfer centers has made headways, which functioned actively in bridging the two sides for science and technology cooperation, injecting new impetus into building the China-Arab and the China-Africa community with a shared future, and injecting new meanings into science and technology interconnection under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.
In recent years, China-Arab States Technology Transfer Center, according to the bilateral development needs, has organized technology matchmaking meetings, China-Arab Science and Technology Week, professional trainings and other activities, provided tailored supporting services for China-Arab enterprises and relevant agencies, set up scientific and technological cooperation platforms in such areas as agricultural Internet of Things, green and intelligent water-saving equipment, satellite data services, high-yield potato cultivation, food development, etc., and transferred a batch of advanced technologies and equipment to the Belt and Road countries, including date palm pest control, agricultural Internet of Things, water-saving technology and equipment and potato seed breeding and standardized planting.
At the meeting, experts and scholars from China and Arab states discussed the future direction of technology transfer and innovation cooperation.
Hicham Fenniri, Senior Science and Technology Officer of Moroccan Foundation for Advanced Science, Innovation and Research (MAScIR) said that MAScIR would like to carry out extensive cooperation with China’s scientific research institutes and scientific and technological enterprises in the fields of new energy, biomedicine, microelectronics, and further push bilateral cooperation by establishing joint laboratory and implementing technology transfer and transformation projects. He looked forward to establishing partnership with more Chinese scientific research institutes and enterprises through important platforms like China-Arab States Expo.
Liu Jizhen, an academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and expert in alternate electrical power system with renewable energy sources, said that Ningxia is at the forefront in fields of coal-to-liquid, coal-to-gas, and coal-to-hydrogen in China. Under the circumstances of accelerated development driven by energy transformation, Ningxia shall make good use of the China-Arab States Expo as an important international platform to play an exemplary role in promoting the national energy transition, peaking carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieving carbon neutrality before 2060 (also known as “dual carbon” goals).
“China’s experience in water management should serve the Belt and Road innovative development.” Said Wang Hao, an academician of Chinese Academy of Engineering and expert in hydrology and water resources. He also noted that different regions along the Belt and Road path have different water problems. Though sharing proximity in development stage and similarity in development conditions with the Belt and Road countries, China boasts of advanced water management experience, highly applicable safeguards measures, sufficient funds and complete water resources allocation technologies, equipment and infrastructure construction capability, all of which can help improve the water governance capability of the Belt and Road countries; therefore, it is of great significance to strengthen cooperation and exchanges in water resources allocation and irrigation. With relatively mature hydro-power technologies, China can help the Belt and Road countries strengthen the capability of coordinating and allocating water resources to consolidate the foundation of water security.