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EU and China step up cooperation in research and innovation

Brussels, 30 June 2015

Carlos Moedas, EU Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, and WAN Gang, Chinese Minister for Science and Technology, agreed today to step up EU-China cooperation in the field of research and innovation at the 2nd EU-China Innovation Co-operation Dialogue, in the margins of the 17th EU-China Summit.

Carlos Moedas underlined the great importance for EU and China to cooperate as equal partners in strategic areas of common interest to address global challenges and promote sustainable growth. He said "China has become a major science and technology power. Europe needs to engage with China in the context of our open science, open innovation and open to the world policy. Today's agreements mark a step towards addressing global societal challenges and developing joint innovative solutions together."

The EU and China decided to:

  • set up a new co-funding mechanism to support joint research and innovation projects in strategic areas. This will be funded through Horizon 2020, the EU's research and innovation programme, and relevant research and innovation funding programmes on the Chinese side.
  • work to ensure reciprocal access to their respective research and innovation funding programmes through appropriate participation rules, regular exchange of data and the timely provision of information to participants.
  • stimulate collaboration on frontier research through the signature of an implementing arrangement between the European Research Council and the Natural Science Foundation of China that will facilitate excellence-based and bottom-up research cooperation between high calibre Chinese and European scientists.
  • reinforce the long standing cooperation between the European Commission Joint Research Centre and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, by signing a new collaborative research arrangement on remote sensing.

Discussions also touched upon the implementation of the EU-China Flagship Initiative on Food, Agriculture and Biotechnology, research and innovation cooperation on Sustainable Urbanisation – one of the pillars of the EU-China Urbanisation Partnership launched in 2012, the renewed EU-China 1998 Agreement on Science and Technology and other thematic areas of common interest such as energy, ICT, aviation, and health.


The EU and China are celebrating 40 years of diplomatic relationships and since 1998, research and innovation is a pillar of this cooperation.

EU cooperation with China in the field of research and innovation

EU relations with China


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