BEIJING, Aug. 7 (Xinhua) -- Chinese President Xi Jinping has always attached great importance to sci-tech innovation, stressing that sci-tech self-reliance and self-strengthening should always be considered a strategic support for national development.
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, encouraged scientists, researchers and technologists to surmount sci-tech peaks on various occasions.
TARGETING SCI-TECH FRONTIERS
During an inspection trip in southwest China's Guizhou Province in February, Xi met with the project leaders and core scientists of China's Five-hundred-meter Aperture Spherical Radio Telescope (FAST), the world's largest single-dish radio telescope.
Stressing the importance of science and technology in China's pursuit of building a modern socialist country, Xi called on scientists to scale the heights of global science and make new and greater contributions to the construction of China's scientific and technological strength at a faster pace, realizing the country's self-reliance and self-improvement in science and technology.
So far, the FAST has helped scientists discover almost 400 pulsars, two times the pulsars discovered by other telescopes during the same period.
Besides the FAST, Xi also shows great concern for China's progress in other sci-tech frontiers.
He visited an exhibition on the lunar samples brought back by the Chang'e-5 probe and China's lunar exploration achievements. He also expressed his congratulations on the successful launch of the core module of China's space station and spoke with the three astronauts stationed in the core module via a video call.
In April, Xi visited a laboratory on imaging and intelligence at Tsinghua University. He urged steady growth of spending in basic research, and motivated researchers to carry out free exploration, dare to challenge existing theories and be bold in opening up new directions in scientific research.
SERVING HIGH-QUALITY DEVELOPMENT
In addition to targeting global sci-tech frontiers, sci-tech development is also expected to serve the main economic battlefields, fulfill the significant needs of the country and benefit people's lives and health.
While inspecting machinery manufacturer Guangxi Liugong Group Co., Ltd. this April, Xi said high-quality development of the manufacturing industry is the top priority in promoting China's high-quality economic growth.
With government support, Chinese enterprises are playing an increasingly important role in sci-tech innovation.
Liugong, an international enterprise with 32 complete machine product lines, currently has five global research and development (R&D) platforms and four state-level innovation bases, employing more than 1,000 R&D engineers.
There are 275,000 high- and new-tech enterprises and 223,000 small and medium-sized sci-tech enterprises respectively in China.
The country is also building international sci-tech innovation centers in Beijing, Shanghai and the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, as well as setting up 21 national innovation demonstration zones and 169 high-tech zones.
BENEFITING PEOPLE'S LIVELIHOOD
Chinese people benefited from the sci-tech achievements and innovation initiatives since the country further increased the support of sci-tech in improving people's livelihood.
When visiting a tea farm during his inspection trip to east China's Fujian Province in March, Xi stressed more efforts in implementing the arrangements to dispatch technical professionals to rural areas to help with local development.
In Nanping City of the province where the tea farm is located, the contribution of science and technology to agricultural growth has increased from 33 to more than 60 percent since 1999.
A total of hundreds of thousands of technical professionals have participated in China's poverty alleviation efforts. The country in February declared a "complete victory" in eradicating absolute poverty.
Sci-tech innovations have helped China achieve major progress in fields like improving air quality, protecting land resources, reclaiming saline land and preventing and controlling major epidemics.
Accelerating sci-tech innovation is a definite choice for China since it has embarked on the journey to achieve the second centenary goal. Enditem