China to adopt favorable policies to attract global talent in push for innovation

China will continue to adopt favorable policies to attract global talents, said the new minister of science and technology on Monday, as the country is strengthening efforts to become the world's innovation powerhouse.

Wang Zhigang made the remarks at a group interview held on the sidelines of the annual session of the National People's Congress, the country's top legislature.

"Scientific and technological innovation is substantially driven by talents. So, in the next stage, the Ministry of Science and Technology will focus on strengthening international cooperation in an effort to attract more talents to take part in China's scientific research projects," said Wang.

Wang's call for introduction of more global talents comes after the State Council, China's cabinet, announced a series of reforms to reorganize the Ministry of Science and Technology during the annual legislative meeting.

According to the reforms, the National Natural Science Foundation of China will be affiliated to the restructured Ministry of Science and Technology. The Foundation, which was established in 1986, is an organization designed to provide funds to the country's scientific research projects.

The restructured Ministry of Science and Technology will also oversee the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, which is responsible for introducing foreign experts and professionals. The Administration plays an important role in China's current global talent strategy.

In January, the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs unveiled a more open visa policy for overseas experts. According to the new visa policy which is now effective all over the country, a foreigner can obtain what it called an R Visa after he or she is granted a confirmation letter for high-end foreign talent by the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs. Valid for up to 10 years, this type of visa offers perks including a visa fee waiver, 180-day stay for a single entry and a same-day visa permit approval for spouses and children.

In a previous interview with the official Xinhua News Agency during the annual legislative meeting, Wang pledged to create a sound environment for global talents to conduct scientific research, no matter what achievements they would make. "For those who make achievements, they deserve more respect and recognition from the society," stressed Wang in the interview.

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