China Science & Technology Digest:
February 1-15, 2003
This digest summarizes S&T-related articles that appeared in the media ATIP monitored in the first half of February 2003. Some articles reference a relevant website to assist readers in obtaining further information. For questions or to request additional information, please send email to ChinaST@atip.or.jp. The exchange rate used for this issue is RMB8.287 against the U.S. dollar.
Three Electronic and Information "Belts" Formed in China
Three information technology "belts" have formed in China, according to a report from the Ministry of Information Industry. They are located on the Zhujiang River Delta in south China, the Yangtze River Delta, and across Beijing, Tianjin and Tanggu in north China. The output value of the electronic and information technology (IT) industry of Guangdong Province totaled 390 billion yuan (approx. US$46.9 billion) in 2002, the highest in the country. The production value of the electronic and IT industry of Jiangsu Province, a major producer on the Yangtze River Delta, rose by 20.8 percent to reach a total of 260 billion yuan (approx. US$31 billion). The production of integrated circuit, computer and digital audio and video devices became a very important industry of the region. Beijing yielded 6 billion yuan (approx. US$722 million) in pre-tax profits from the electronic and IT sector last year, which is up by 6.3 percent from the previous year. Sales of software, up 50 percent, reached 33 billion yuan (approx. US$3.98 billion). Market forecasts show that China's electronic and IT industry is expected to grow by 30 percent to reach 2.1 trillion yuan (approx. US$253 billion) this year.
Source: Xinhuanet 01/30/2003
China Expects to Send Astronauts into Orbit in 2003
China is planning to send its first manned space flight some time this year. The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp. has been in charge of the launching of four unmanned test space flights between November 1999 and January 2003. It is believed that previous test flights had basically given the go-ahead to China to proceed with manned missions.
Source: Xinhuanet 02/14/2003
Shanghai Develops First Malaria Vaccine
A team of researchers from Shanghai Second Military Medical University has developed the world's first vaccine against Malaria. The Chinese team, which started conducting this particular research six years ago, developed the intravenous drug with funding from the World Health Organization (WHO). The first round of clinical trials on the drug, called PfCP-2.9, will begin at Changhai Hospital in Shanghai in a few weeks.
The technology will be transferred to Shanghai Wanxing Bio-Pharmaceutical Co., which hopes to begin mass production of the vaccine within three years. WHO has signed an agreement with Wanxing to ensure the vaccine is affordable, with the health organization supporting the first round of clinical trials.
Source: Eastday.com 02/14/2003
China to Produce 5th Generation TFT-LCDs
Beijing-based display company BOE Technology Co Ltd will build the first fifth generation thin film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) line in China, following its acquisition of South Korean LCD maker Hydis. The fifth generation production line will start to operate in the first half of 2005. It usually costs US$1-1.2 billion and features the most advanced manufacturing technology in the TFT-LCD industry. This line is mainly used to produce large-screen LCD monitors and televisions.
Hydis is a subsidiary of the South Korean semiconductor giant Hynix. BOE paid approximately US$400 million for the deal, which includes Hydis’ three TFT-LCD lines, all Hydis' TFT-LCD technologies, patents and techniques, as well as Hydis' global sales network.
Source: China Daily 02/13/2003
China Completes ARGO Test Floats Placement
China has placed fifteen real-time geostrophic oceanography (ARGO) satellite-tracked floats in the northwestern Pacific to collect oceanic data as part of the ARGO global ocean-monitoring plan. China joined the ARGO global ocean-monitoring plan, launched by aerologists and oceanographers from the United States and other nations in 1998 to improve the accuracy of weather forecasts, especially hurricanes, typhoons, floods, droughts, and other disastrous weather conditions. Under the ARGO plan, scientists will deploy 3,000 satellite-tracked floats in the four oceans for the collection of temperature, salinity, and other oceanic data. China has now fulfilled the tasks set by the ARGO global ocean monitoring network.
Source: Xinhuanet 02/15/2003
China Discovers Gene Causing Heart Disease
Chinese scientists have discovered a gene that causes familial auricular fibrillation, a common form of abnormal heartbeat. The research was financed by the State Natural Science Fund, Shanghai Natural Science Fund, and a Ministry of Education fund, and was conducted jointly by the Research Institute of Medical Genetics under the Shanghai-based Tongji University and the southern branch of the state research center for the human genome. The discovery has been reported by Science magazine earlier this month. The incidence of auricular fibrillation is said to increase with age. It affects about one percent of adults under 40, rising to 2.3 percent of adults above 40, and up to more than 5 percent for those older than 65. Auricular fibrillation may cause a reduction in sport endurance and the development of thrombosis, including strokes. The incidence of auricular fibrillation can also encourage heart failure and increase the death rate from heart diseases. One third of strokes among the aged population are caused by auricular fibrillation.
Source: Xinhuanet 02/07/2003
Sino-ROK IC Design Center Launched
A center for designing integrated circuits (IC), jointly built by China and the Republic of Korea (ROK), was recently inaugurated in the high-tech zone of Shenzhen City, south China's Guangdong Province. SinoKorea Soc Co. Ltd., with KETI, a major state scientific research organization of the ROK holding a controlling stake, is the first business operating at the center. Shenzhen is home to 70 IC companies, which account for half of the national total.
Source: Xinhuanet 02/28/2003
Modern TCM Research Center Established in Shanghai
Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has established the Murad Research Center for Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Modernization in a bid to push forward the country's TCM modernization.
The center was established in cooperation with American Nobel Laureate Ferid Murad who won the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 1998 for his discovery of nitric oxide as a signaling molecule in the cardiovascular system, which directly resulted in the development of Viagra.
Source: People's Daily 02/16/2003
Chinese Capital Spends More on Research
In 2002, Beijing increased its investment in science and technology by 7.8 percent to reach 37 billion yuan (approx. US$4.46 billion). Investment in R&D reached 18 billion yuan (approx. US$2.16 billion), which is up 5.1 percent from 2001. Last year, the number of hi-tech companies in the Zhongguancun Science Park totaled 11,340, thus contributing 17.2 percent to the city's 313 billion yuan GDP (approx. US$37.7 billion).
Source: Xinhua News Agency 02/06/2003
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