Date
17 October 2018
Premier Li Keqiang will lead the revamped body, which is charged with planning and studying the country's key technological development strategies. Photo: AFP
Premier Li Keqiang will lead the revamped body, which is charged with planning and studying the country's key technological development strategies. Photo: AFP

China revamps national technology leadership group

China has revamped a national leadership group charged with planning and studying its key technological development strategies, signaling potential policy shifts, Reuters reports.

The group, formerly known as the National Technology and Education leadership Group under the State Council, has been renamed without the mention of education to reflect a focus on technology, according to a circular published on the government’s website on Wednesday.

The circular said the change was due to “relevant arrangements” as required by work, without elaborating.

Premier Li Keqiang, who had chaired the original group since 2013, will lead the renamed body with vice premier Liu He as deputy.

More assistance for China’s tech sector would mark the latest in a series of growth-boosting measures being rolled out by the central government as an escalating trade war with the United States puts more pressure on the country’s already slowing economy.

Under a state-backed industrial policy known as Made in China 2025, China wants to catch up with rivals in sectors including robotics, aerospace, clean-energy cars and advanced basic materials.

The strategy, unveiled in 2015 by the State Council, China’s cabinet, is at the core of the country’s efforts to move up the value chain and achieve President Xi Jinping’s vision of turning the country into a global superpower by 2050.

Under the plan, Beijing wants Chinese suppliers to capture 70 percent of market share by 2025 for “basic core components and important basic materials” in strategic industries.

Other members of the revamped leadership group include top officials from more than a dozen ministries and key central government bodies, including central bank head Yi Gang and State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission director Xiao Yaqing.

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