BEIJING — Premier Li Keqiang on Monday called for boosting basic research and application innovation to make China a country of innovators.
Li, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, made the remarks at a meeting of the national leading group on science and technology, which he heads.
Calling innovation the primary driving force for development, Li said China’s innovation-driven development strategy had been well implemented in the past five years, resulting in many stellar scientific and technological achievements.
Meanwhile, it is necessary to be aware that China remains weak in fields such as basic research, indigenous innovation, and some key technologies, he said.
He asked for more efforts in strengthening basic research and its application, stimulating vitality of innovators through reforms, and making research results better serve the economy and support the country’s high-quality development.
While making optimal use of government funds, universities, research institutes, enterprises, and private sectors should also be encouraged to increase investment in basic research, according to Li.
Emphasizing better welfare for those involved in basic research, Li called for greater support for the development of basic disciplines, such as mathematics, to lay a solid foundation for innovation.
The premier pledged efforts to deepen the reform of streamlining administrative approvals, delegating power to lower levels, improving regulations, and upgrading services, with aims to encourage scientists and researchers to be more devoted to and creative in their work.
The government will phase out outdated regulations and management systems, letting sci-tech workers have a say over their work and allowing them to concentrate on research, he said.
China will endeavor to make breakthroughs in some key and core technologies, he said.
The premier called for a clear understanding of the gap between China’s sci-tech innovation and the world’s advanced level in the fields of basic research and applied basic research, and urged international exchanges and cooperation.
Vice Premier Han Zheng, also a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, attended the meeting.