At the proposal of Chinese Premier WEN Jiabao at the 14th China-ASEAN Summit and the 20th Anniversary of China-ASEAN Dialogue on November 19, 2011, the 10+1 (ASEAN+China) Ministers of Science and Technology launched the China-ASEAN Science and Technology Partnership Program ("CHINA-ASEAN STEP")in Nanning, China, on September 22, 2012, so as to deepen cooperation between China and ASEAN in science, technology and sustainable development.
CHINA-ASEAN STEP aims to accelerate economic growth, social progress and cultural development in the region and promote active collaboration and mutual assistance through close partnership in science and innovation, sharing of experience and capacity building. With strengthened ties in science and technology, China and ASEAN will contribute more to the integration of regional and global economy, the realization of UN Millennium Development Goals and the wellbeing of both Chinese and ASEAN peoples.
CHINA-ASEAN STEP is based on the following principles:
1) Equality and mutual benefits
On the basis of mutual respect, China and ASEAN member countries shall share research findings and experience in developing science and technology, and set up innovation cooperation networks to speed up the ASEAN integration process.
Resources shall be integrated to conduct all-round cooperation, meeting the needs of ASEAN member countries in scientific and technological advancement.
3) Capacity Building
The program is targeted at upgrading the scientific and technological capacity of ASEAN member states in a bid to facilitate the overall sci-tech advancement of ASEAN.
4) Extensive Participation
Under the leadership of the government, non-governmental resources should be mobilized to join China-ASEAN science and technology cooperation, and enterprises are encouraged to play a major role in collaboration activities.
Within the framework of STEP, the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology launched the Joint Laboratory Program to set up sci-tech labs jointly with ASEAN member states on a bilateral basis. MOST will, based on the needs of the collaborating country, work with relevant sci-tech authorities to support the cooperation between the research institutes of each country and build joint labs in ASEAN member states. The Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology will provide not less than USD$1 million to each lab. The science authorities of the host country shall provide corresponding support for the construction and operation of the joint lab.
The Program aims to establish long-term, stable partnership among Chinese and ASEAN research institutes through the joint labs, and facilitate high level research cooperation, exchange and training of young scientists, and the transfer of applicable technologies from China to ASEAN member states. The Chinese institutes will also share their experiences will their ASEAN counterparts so as to improve their capacity in relevant fields, upgrade the industrial technology prowess, and promote the development of related industries.
Based on the proposals of both sides, the joint lab can cover the following areas:
1. Lab facilities and equipment preparation.
2. Joint research. Based upon the needs of ASEAN member states, Chinese and ASEAN research institutes can work together on issues of common interest.
3. Exchange of researchers. The joint lab can send researchers to work for 6 to 12 months in China, while the Chinese research institute can also send researchers for short visit to the joint lab.
4. Personnel training. If needed, the Chinese institutes can organize technology training in China or in the joint lab.
5. Technology transfer and incubation. Chinese research institutes can transfer China's applicable technologies to its counterparts in ASEAN according to their needs, and demonstrate the technologies in the joint lab.
6. Connecting to other technology resources in China. The joint lab and Chinese institutes will serve as bridges linking the two countries' S&T resources in relevant fields, thus providing a platform for exchanges and collaboration among enterprises, universities and research institutes.
7. Other cooperation as deemed necessary by both sides.
1. The joint lab will be established under bilateral cooperation framework between MOST and the host country. The sci-tech authority of the host country shall identify the cooperation field and submit the joint lab proposal to MOST through official channels.
2. MOST will study the proposal and confirm the cooperation intent with the host country's science authority. A ministerial MOU (or Letter of Intent) will then be inked between the two countries and a research institute from each side, which is strong in the particular field, will be designated as the implementing agency. The implementing agency from ASEAN member state will administer the construction and operation of the joint lab.
3. The implementing agencies from both sides shall submit their plan and budget for the joint lab to their respective authorities according to ministerial MOU(or Letter of Intent). After the approval by the authorities, an implementation agreement will be signed between the implementing agencies.
4. MOST and the host country's sci-tech authorities will finance the implementing agencies and support the building and operation of the joint lab according to their own management regulations.
5. The sci-tech authorities of both countries will name and inaugurate the joint lab.
6. The implementing agencies of the joint lab shall submit annual report to their respective sci-tech authorities, reviewing cooperation progress and analyzing existing problems.
7. The sci-tech authorities of both countries will evaluate the buildings and facilities of the joint lab upon completion of the construction period.
In case of any questions, please contact:
Mr. Xiao Wei, Division of Asian and African Affairs, Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Science and Technology of China
For more information, please visit: http://www.cistc.gov.cn/China-ASEAN/English/mainworks.asp?column=845