The EU-China Business Association (EUCBA) today held a highly successful and interactive webinar. The subject under discussion was on the importance of research and science co-operation in the delivery of economic recovery.
Gwenn Sonck the executive director of the EUCBA explained that “the EU-China Business Association promotes trade and investment between the EU and China and vice-versa.
It unites 19 Chinese business associations from 19 different countries in Europe, representing over 20,000 companies. This webinar is timely because both the EU and China are prioritising investment into research and science. Such investment accounts for 2.5% of Chinese GDP while the EU target for investment in research under Horizon Europe is 3%. The innovation co-operation dialogue that is taking place between the EU and China at this time will also set the framework conditions for this future bilateral relationship.”
Frances Fitzgerald MEP is a member of the European Parliament–China delegation and she is a former deputy Prime Minister from Ireland.
She said that “the research, science and innovation sectors are totally inter-linked. Countries and companies cannot do all the research on their own.
International collaboration is a key element in the delivery of new innovative products and solutions. This is particularly the case when the world is seeking to find a vaccine against Covid-19. Researchers from all over the world must work together to find a secure and trustworthy Covid-19 vaccine.
Openness, transparency, reciprocity and a rules based approach to international trade must underpin the EU-China relationship. But there is clearly a challenging geo-political environment. We are at a crossroads with regard to the EU-China relationship and EU leaders will meet on November 16th next to review EU-China relations.
455 Chinese companies took part in the Horizon 2020 research, innovation and science programme during the period 2014-2020. Chinese companies will continue to participate in Horizon Europe which is the new research, innovation and science framework programme that will run between the period 2021-2027.”
Zhiwei Song is the President of the EU-China Association for innovation and entrepreneurship. He said that “his association is supporting incubators and it is bridging the knowledge gap between the EU and China and between China and the EU.
His organisation is also organising online presentations to promote research mobility from the EU to China and vice-versa. It is participating in European Commission supported programmes such as Enrich and Euraxess. The former initiative furthers research co-operation between Europe and China while the later scheme promotes scientific collaboration in an international context.”
Abraham Liukang is the chief representative for Huawei to the EU institutions.
He said “Don’t believe all the press headlines. Huawei is no stranger to Europe. Huawei has been based in Europe for over 20 years.
Huawei has 23 research centres in Europe and we employ 2,400 researchers in Europe, 90% of whom are local hires. Huawei has been an active participant in research projects under the Horizon 2020 research, innovation and science programme 2014-2020.
Huawei has 230 technology agreements with research institutes in Europe and we have partnerships with over 150 universities in Europe.
Our engagement in Horizon 2020 related to research into improving the quality of digital infrastructure and this included 5G and big data research.
The roll-out of 5G has been politicised and this has had the direct effect of slowing down 5G deployment in Europe.
Huawei takes security issues very seriously and that is why Huawei has a cyber-security evaluation centre in the UK and we have an agreement on security isssues with BSI in Germany.
Huawei wants to engage actively in Horizon Europe and in particular in building the smart networks and services of the future.
Over the next 5 years, Huawei plans to invest 100 million euro into our AI eco-system programme in Europe, helping industry organisations, 200,000 developers, 500 ISV partners and 50 universities. Huawei will work with our partners to shape the AI industry in Europe.”
Veerle Van Wassenhove is the Vice-President for R&D and Innovation at Bekaert, a globally leading company with headquarters in Belgium and a strong research foothold in China. She said that “Bekaert’s research operations in China leverage the company’s global innovation capabilities. Together, we are building expertise for both the Chinese market and globally. Covid-19 brought along some difficulties because we, as researchers, want to keep direct contact with our customers in our technology approach, but we manage.”Yu Zhigao is the SVP Technology Rubber Reinforcement and head of the Bardec (R&D center in China). He said that “Bekaert has very strong confidence in China. There is excellent research and technical expertise in China. The company operates 18 sites in 10 cities in China and employs 220 researchers in the Jiangyin R&D center and 250 engineers and technicians in the Engineering site. The Chinese operations contribute to both world class research actions and to achieving the strategies of the company. Our research teams in China create value for our customers.”
Jochum Haakma is the chairperson of the EU-China Business Association.
He said that “the new EU investment screening regulation has only come into force since last Sunday. This means that from now on EU member states will have to consult with Brussels when screening Chinese direct investment measures in strategic sectors. I believe that it would be a very positive development if China and the EU were to agree the terms of a new trade and investment treaty. This is a matter that both sides are actively engaged in at this time. EU leaders will be discussing this important issue too when they convene for their European Council meeting in mid-November.
But the reality is that we do live in a complex world – where trade, politics and security issues at times seem to be inter-linked.
The digital economy is growing faster than the global economy.
And increased activity within the digital economy is going to play a key role in driving economic growth in both Europe and in China. However, one cannot build a strong digital economy without a sound foundation. And this foundation is built by governments in Europe and in China investing strongly in research, innovation and science. It is through advances in both basic and applied sciences that will deliver the innovation that is driving positive change within society today.”
Independent pandemic review panel critical of China and WHO delays
An independent panel said on Monday (18 January) that Chinese officials could have applied public health measures more forcefully in January to curb the initial COVID-19 outbreak, and criticized the World Health Organization (WHO) for not declaring an international emergency until 30 January, writes Stephanie Nebehay.
The experts reviewing the global handling of the pandemic, led by former New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark and former Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, called for reforms to the Geneva-based United Nations agency.Their interim report was published hours after the WHO’s top emergency expert, Mike Ryan, said that global deaths from COVID-19 were expected to top 100,000 per week “very soon”.
“What is clear to the Panel is that public health measures could have been applied more forcefully by local and national health authorities in China in January,” the report said, referring to the initial outbreak of the new disease in the central city of Wuhan, in Hubei province.
As evidence emerged of human-to-human transmission, “in far too many countries, this signal was ignored”, it added.
Specifically, it questioned why the WHO’s Emergency Committee did not meet until the third week of January and did not declare an international emergency until its second meeting on Jan. 30.
“Although the term pandemic is neither used nor defined in the International Health Regulations (2005), its use does serve to focus attention on the gravity of a health event. It was not until 11 March that WHO used the term,” the report said.
“The global pandemic alert system is not fit for purpose,” it said. “The World Health Organization has been underpowered to do the job.”
Under President Donald Trump, the United States has accused the WHO of being “China-centric”, which the agency denies. European countries led by France and Germany have pushed for addressing the WHO’s shortcomings on funding, governance and legal powers.
The panel called for a “global reset” and said that it would make recommendations in a final report to health ministers from the WHO’s 194 member states in May.
Sweden begins 5G auction despite Huawei protests
Sweden’s communications regulator began its delayed auction of 5G-suitable frequencies, a move Huawei warned last week would have serious consequences as the vendor still had outstanding legal action contesting its ban.
In a statement, the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS) said its auction for licences in the 3.5GHz band started today (19 January) with a 2.3GHz sale to follow. It is auctioning 320MHz of 3.5GHz spectrum and 80MHz of 2.3GHz.
Huawei has two other pieces of legal action on the issue outstanding.
In a comment to Mobile World Live issued on 15 January following the failure of its latest appeal, a Huawei representative confirmed its “two main” court cases on the issue were not expected to be ruled on until the end of April.
The company added: “It leads to serious consequences to hold the 5G auction while the conditions for PTS decisions are subject to legal review.”
Sweden’s spectrum auction was originally meant to take place in November 2020, but was postponed after a court suspended the application some of the divisive terms of sale pending a hearing into them.
PTS’ terms were subsequently cleared by the court of appeal, opening the way for the auction to proceeded.
The best of 5G is yet to come
Executives from leading mobile operators have urged consumers to be patient with 5G, explaining more advanced capabilities and use cases will become available as the technology evolves.
Speaking at the recent industry conference CES 2021, Drew Blackard, VP of product management at Samsung Electronics America (SEA), told a panel that many current services including video streaming are merely “better on 5G”.
But he added more advanced “only-on-5G experiences” will become mainstream “more and more as the infrastructure develops” and the technology becomes more widely used.
Blackard noted SEA had “done a lot of development with partners to build out what these can look like”, pointing to a collaboration with AT&T to offer AR experiences for sports fans.
Ice Mobility chairman and co-founder Denise Gibson added “there is an element of patience” to realising 5G’s potential.
She said 5G “is a platform that will evolve”, explaining “it’s not solely about” geographic reach, but also provision of advanced capabilities and services on networks and devices.
Blackard added “partnerships are obviously essential”, noting 5G required “a group, an industry to bring that forward. It’s not a single player that can do that”.
Commenting on the issue Abraham Lui, Huawei's Chief Representative to the EU Institutions, said "In Europe, the best of 5G is yet to come. As 5G deployment gathers pace across the continent, users will appreciate the benefits of this game-changing technology in the near future".
EU approves €2.9 billion in state aid for battery project attracting €9 billion
Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte resigns
EAPM: Big plan on beating cancer set for big launch, coronavirus restrictions tighten
Former MEP Kaja Kallas to become Estonia’s first female prime minister
Dutch PM condemns lockdown riots as 'criminal violence'
Head of French health regulatory body: COVID situation is 'worrying'
Bank embraces blockchain to facilitate Belt and Road trade
#EBA - Supervisor says the EU banking sector entered the crisis with solid capital positions and improved asset quality
The war in #Libya - a Russian movie reveals who is spreading death and terror
First president of #Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev’s 80th birthday and his role in international relations
EU solidarity in action: €211 million to Italy to repair the damage of the harsh weather conditions in autumn 2019
PKK’s involvement in the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict would jeopardize European security
Kyriakides says newly proposed schedule of AstraZeneca ‘not acceptable’
‘It is not a friendly signal from the UK immediately after leaving the European Union’ Borrell
Kyriakides calls on Astra Zeneca to respect delivery schedules for its vaccine
Minister calls for Magnitsky-type sanctions in response to Russia's detention of Navalny
Leaders agree on new ‘dark red’ zones for high-risk COVID areas
Lagarde calls for swift ratification of Next Generation EU
Frontpage2 days ago
Memories beyond Auschwitz are more important than ever
Human Rights2 days ago
Persecution of The Church of Almighty God: From bad to worse
Environment5 days ago
United States re-joining the Paris Agreement - Statement by Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans and High Representative/Vice President Josep Borrell
Environment2 days ago
UK and France can lead mobilization of tropical forest protection investment
Brexit2 days ago
Commission proposes to amend the EU's 2021 budget to accommodate the Brexit Adjustment Reserve
coronavirus2 days ago
WHO says Pfizer deal could allow poor countries to start vaccinating in February
Scotland1 day ago
Proud to be Scots, British and Europeans
South Korea1 day ago
Panel of experts confirms the Republic of Korea is in breach of labour commitments under our trade agreement