The economic giant China has announced plans to restructure its science and technology ministry in its efforts to achieve self-reliance. China aims to reduce technology dependence on foreign tech giants such as the United States.

China Abolishes Its Sci-Tech Ministry

In a State Council plan submitted to parliament on March 7, China government showcased plans to restructure its science and technology ministry to strengthen self-reliance. The cabinet minister wrote in the document:

“Facing the severe situation of international scientific and technological competition as well as external containment and suppression, it is necessary to … accelerate the realization of high-level scientific and technological self-reliance and self-improvement.”

The proposal will be submitted to the National People’s Congress (NPC) for further determination after the parliament review. The move appears after Xi Jinping, the President of China, announced plans to reduce the dependence on foreign technology last week. China’s paramount leader said:

“Amid fierce international competition … whether we can build a socialist modernized country in an all-round way as scheduled depends on the self-reliance and self-improvement of science and technology.”

What Do China Eyes For?

Based on the proposal submitted, the Chinese government aims to reduce some science and technology responsibilities and redistribute them to different ministries. Previously, the ministry had roles such as building high-tech industrial development zones and driving technological progress in rural areas. The cabinet wrote in the plan:

“Strengthen the Ministry of Science and Technology’s strategic planning … optimize the whole-process management of scientific and technological innovation.”

Upon approval, the plan will centralize all the power over science and technology in the hands of the ruling Chinese Communist Party. China has proposed to create a new decision-making body dubbed Central Commission on Science and Technology. The new agency will be deliberating all matters related to science and technology.

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