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Matt Ho

Articles by Matt Ho

China encourages its universities to take initiative in international science and tech

29 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will encourage its universities to take the international lead in science and technology tie-ups and help the country gain a “winning” innovation edge for the next two or three decades, according to the Ministry of Education.In a document released on the weekend, the ministry also said it would guide colleges to commercialise the fruits of their research.The announcement comes amid China’s drive to become more self-reliant in critical technologies.To reach that goal, Beijing aims – as…

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Chinese scientists challenge Google’s ‘quantum supremacy’ claim with new algorithm

March 15, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A team of Chinese researchers say they have found a “massively more efficient” and more accurate way to simulate quantum computing using traditional processors, challenging a 2019 claim by Google scientists that they had achieved “quantum supremacy”.Quantum computing is still in its infancy but promises to take computational power to a new level by manipulating subatomic particles. Scientists hope it will help lead to breakthroughs in areas such as materials science and developing new drugs…

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‘Two sessions’ 2021: China is ‘30 years off being a top-tier industrial powerhouse’

March 8, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will take at least 30 years to become a top manufacturing power like the US or Germany, its former industry minister has said, as Beijing steps up plans to reinforce its industrial foundations and supply chains over the next five years.Miao Wei, who oversaw the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology for a decade before stepping down in August, listed a range of basic challenges to China’s manufacturing sector, including its weakness in foundational areas such as basic parts,…

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China fails to meet research spending goal but aims to double efforts in applied research, science minister says

February 27, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will double efforts in developing applied research in the next five years even though the country failed to meet its research spending target for its last five-year plan, according to its science minister.Minister of Science and Technology Wang Zhigang said on Friday that China does not want a technology decoupling with the United States, especially in areas such as semiconductors and scientific research collaboration, but it will put semiconductors – including integrated circuits,…

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China bans Taiwanese pineapples over biosafety fears

February 26, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Mainland China has banned imports of pineapples from Taiwan from Monday, citing concerns about plant pests as tensions rise across the Taiwan Strait over politics, trade and coronavirus vaccine supply.Officials in Beijing said the ban was a “normal biosafety measure” but Taipei said the decision violated global trade rules and it would spend NT$1 billion (US$36 million) to help its pineapple farmers, who account for about 40 per cent of the island’s fruit sales to the mainland.The ban comes…

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China should promote free movement of digital data, government think tank says

February 5, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China should encourage the free movement of digital information across borders and consider setting up regional data security pacts with Southeast Asian nations, a government think tank has suggested as part of the country’s plan to boost its digital economy.Policymakers should prepare for an explosion of industrial digital data far bigger than the pool of personal information already online, and adopt a regulatory approach that balances cybersecurity with technology-driven growth, the…

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Chinese President Xi Jinping says intellectual property protection is key part of country’s development plans

February 1, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese President Xi Jinping has said intellectual property protection occupies a central position in China’s new development strategy and promised that the state will strengthen its support for businesses operating overseas.He also said Beijing will also curb anticompetitive activities at home and abroad and support fairer global intellectual property governance, according to a newly released transcript of a speech he made to a Politburo “group learning session” in November.Encouraging…

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Chinese capital Beijing sets sights on building ‘trillion yuan’ hi-tech manufacturing clusters

January 21, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The city of Beijing will develop new “trillion yuan” hi-tech manufacturing clusters and strengthen its capabilities in areas such as artificial intelligence and quantum communication research, according to its new five-year action plan to be a global science and technology hub.The Chinese capital wants to attract more global talent by offering better work conditions, and opening up its research facilities to international scientists to boost China’s influence in global science and technology…

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Is this Chinese prototype the shape of maglev train tech to come?

January 13, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China rolled out a prototype of a state-of-the-art maglev vehicle that its developers said could herald cheaper and faster next-generation magnetic levitation train transport, even approaching the speed of some planes.Researchers at Southwest Jiaotong University unveiled the new maglev train and 165-metre (540 feet) test track in Chengdu on Wednesday.The train is designed to travel at up to 620km/h (385mph) but researchers said they were working to stretch that speed to 800km/h (497mph).The new…

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China’s plan to boost innovation and what it could mean for research in Greater Bay Area

December 5, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China is looking to revamp its “national team” in the global competition for scientific and technological leadership, including bigger roles for its companies and attracting more international talent to join. Some experts think the strategy would particularly benefit the government’s Greater Bay Area scheme, which includes Hong Kong and Shenzhen.The new five-year plan – China’s policy outline for 2021 to 2025 – said it would push the development of its national laboratories and overhaul its…

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China pivots to state-corporate partnerships in drive for technology self-reliance

December 1, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]As Beijing doubles down in its contest with the US for technological leadership, it is looking to Chinese industrial champions to drive the country’s innovation programme – and even basic research in science and technology – once dominated by the state sector.The hard lessons from Washington’s export ban on the sale of advanced chips to telecoms giant Huawei did not need spelling out to Chinese Communist Party leaders at the end of October, when they approved an outline of China’s 14th five…

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Technological self-reliance is at heart of China’s economic plans, says key Xi Jinping aide

November 22, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese President Xi Jinping’s top economic adviser Liu He has stressed that the country’s pursuit of self-reliance in key technologies is “imperative” to its new economic strategy, which places an increased emphasis on domestic consumption.“This is a critical juncture for the development of a big country’s economy,” Liu wrote in an official guide to Beijing’s new development plan, and promised that the capital markets would support the drive for technological innovation.Liu’s responsibilities…

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China’s hi-tech direction for the next five years

November 11, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China fleshed out some of its plans for new technology with the release of a summary of its next five-year plan, which covers the period until 2025.Technology is one of the most contentious areas in Beijing’s relationship with Washington and a field that China sees as critical to its drive for modernisation and self-reliance over the next decade and a half.In the new document, Beijing has signalled a shift in focus from “integrating and assimilating” foreign innovations to investing in home…

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China-US rivalry is main challenge to Asian giant’s development, NDRC says

October 29, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s rivalry with the United States will be the “biggest external uncertainty” that restrains its medium- and long-term development but “time is on China’s side”, the country’s top economic planning agency said in its assessment ahead of this week’s key meeting in Beijing to chart the future course of the world’s second-largest economy.“China will have to seek development in an ever more unstable and uncertain world,” it said.The assessment, completed in August and written by department…

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‘A new direction’: is China shifting focus to economic opening-up in Xinjiang and Tibet?

October 10, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has signalled it may tilt its policy focus back to economic development in the politically sensitive regions of Xinjiang and Tibet, where it appears to be gaining confidence about its grip on social stability.But analysts have questioned the extent to which Beijing will be able to open up the two ethnic minority regions if it continues its repressive measures around religion and culture, and whether it will be able to convince the outside world about its policies.Beijing is facing…

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Chinese companies ramp up basic R&D spending as US tech decoupling looms: report

August 27, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese companies increased their spending on basic research by more than half last year amid the growing risk of US-China decoupling in technology and Beijing’s ambitions for innovation to drive the economy.Outlays in the area rose by 52 per cent in 2019, more than triple the rate recorded for the previous two years, according to an annual report released on Thursday jointly by the National Bureau of Statistics, the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Finance Ministry.For the first time…

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China planning high-speed rail freight network to help e-commerce sector

August 23, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s state-owned railway operator is planning to accelerate the development of a high-speed freight network in the hope of bolstering the e-commerce network.A development plan published in mid-August also includes plans to further expand the passenger network and build an advanced control system that will integrate home-grown technologies such as 5G telecommunications, the Beidou satellite navigation system and artificial intelligence.China has ambitions to become a world leader in rail…

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China’s economic and social plans must factor in that coronavirus will be with us for a long time: task force

July 27, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A Chinese central government task force said officials and businesses must change the way they think about strategies for the future and factor into their policies and decisions that the coronavirus pandemic would be a long haul.The assessment came as recent Covid-19 outbreaks continued in the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region in the west of China and Liaoning province in the northeast, and there has been a resurgence in outbreaks in many parts of the northern hemisphere over the summer.The…

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China’s Greater Bay Area stymied by lack of coordination and research facilities, review finds

July 23, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A review of the Greater Bay Area in southern China has identified shortcomings that have slowed progress on Beijing’s plan for the region to become a hi-tech hub, including not enough research facilities and poor coordination and flow of talent and capital between the cities.The findings were presented at a meeting of the national political advisory body on Wednesday by Zhu Xiaodan, who heads its Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan and Overseas Chinese committee that carried out the review.Senior…

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Has China gone into stealth mode with its military-civil fusion plans?

June 5, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]It has been a feature of the Chinese government’s annual state-of-the-nation address to the country’s legislature since 2014.But this year when Chinese Premier Li Keqiang delivered his government work report and development plan to the National People’s Congress, there was no mention of the core Chinese military modernisation policy that has alarmed Washington.The military-civil fusion (MCF) policy is a national strategy to enlist the private sector to help modernise the country’s defences and…

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Focus on US as main opponent, says China military strategist

May 29, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China needs to pick its battles wisely and concentrate on its main opponent the United States, according to a prominent Chinese military strategist, widely credited with shaping the Trump administration’s hawkish views against Beijing.Retired air force major general Qiao Liang said Washington’s open contest with Beijing to contain China’s rise had attracted other parties – including advocates for independence in Taiwan – to join the attack, but he advised the Chinese leadership to avoid being…

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China’s top court vows to help companies stay afloat amid coronavirus fallout

May 26, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Helping debt-laden companies stay afloat and resolving contractual disputes are among the top priorities for China’s courts this year, amid the economic fallout from the Covid-19 pandemic.But the country’s top court also said it would defend China’s interests in response to overseas lawsuits against Beijing demanding reparations for the deadly coronavirus outbreak.Delivering his annual report to the legislature on Monday, Zhou Qiang, president of the Supreme People’s Court, said the courts must…

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