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EU official: EU-China co-operation promising
( 2003-09-20 08:47) (China Daily)

The EU and China may sign co-operative agreements on developing energy and civil aviation programmes next year, if current co-operation on the Galileo Programme continues successfully.

Francois Lamoureux, director-general of Energy and Transport at the European Union (EU), made the remarks at a ceremony held on Friday in Beijing to launch the China-Europe technical training and co-operation centre on global satellite navigation systems under Europe's programme on satellite radio navigation.

It would also propel the development of universal services in other areas such as transport, telecommunications, agriculture and fisheries.

Lamoureux said the Galileo Programme will not only benefit political and economic development in China and the EU, but will be helpful in people's daily lives. In 2008, when Beijing hosts the Olympic Games, for example, the programme will bring new communication technologies to people from throughout the world.

The Galileo Programme is the largest co-operative project so far between China and the EU, said Shi Dinghuan, secretary-general of the Ministry of Science and Technology.

China's major universities, research institutes and big companies will all play key roles in technological studies related to the programme, said Shi.

"We welcome enterprises from the European Union to develop technology and markets in the Zhongguancun High-Tech Zone, and we are glad they will set up technological parks here so as to sustain further development of the programme,'' he said.

Shi said enterprises from the Europe are also actively collaborating with their Chinese counterparts in the global satellite navigation field.

The Sixth Framework Programme of EU has arranged for 100 million euros (US$114 million) in research funds to support co-operative efforts between China and EU enterprises.

Shi said the draft agreement on China's participation in the Galileo Programme, which was signed on Thursday in Beijing, will be submitted to the next EU Transport Council meeting on October 9 for formal approval by the EU member states.

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