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Nanotech needs major capital injection
By Fu Jing (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-05-20 22:36

China will continually inject capital into research and development of nanotechnology, a major basic research field officials believe needs strong government backing.

Deng Nan, vice-minister of science and technology, said the government has made clear its nanotechnology research goals in its middle and long-term national science and technology plan (2006-2020).

But she didn't elaborate on the specific objectives.

"In the national plan, which we are now mapping, we have made a decision to mobilize national research forces to reach some breakthroughs," Deng said at a conference Thursday at which a national committee on nanotechnology accreditation was being set up.

The new committee, a branch under the China National Accreditation Board for Laboratories, is responsible for laboratory accreditation of nano-tech research and nano-tech products.

To further promote research in the field, the National Centre for Nanotechnology Thursday recruited four leading researchers, including Jiang Lei with the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), as chief scientists. The centre was founded last year with multi-million dollars investment from the government.

Bai Chunli, vice-president of CAS, said rapid development in nanometre science and technology will greatly promote sci-tech development and innovation, and accelerate the development of information technology and biotechnology.

Since 1999, China has made the field among top priority basic research and investment has soared.

Nanometre development may lead to another industrial revolution in the near future, Bai said, adding the centre will further promote the sustainable development of China's nanometre scientific research and application development and enable the CAS to make greater contributions in the field.

Fan Boyuan, vice-mayor of Beijing said the Chinese capital will provide more investment and give preferential treatment to companies engaged in the research and development of nanotechnology.

He said previous investment injected in the nanotechnology sector has laid a solid foundation, as Beijing has taken the technological lead in some aspects like nano-biology, nano-medicine and nano-electronics throughout the country.

He added: "We now are pushing the development of nanotechnology into a new phase -- gaining the independent intellectual property rights of the core technologies in the gradual process of industrialization."

At present, the goal of the local government's work agenda is to accelerate the application of nanotechnologies to industries such as construction materials, textiles and garments, automotive products, environmental protection, energy and utilities and other traditional sectors.

"We will try to help companies in the nano sector to further improve their advanced technologies directly oriented to market demand both home and abroad," said Fan.

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