Wed, November 18, 2009
China > China & World > US president Obama's first Asia tour

China, U.S.eyes more cooperation in clean energy field, challenges still exist

2009-11-18 15:50:53 GMT2009-11-18 23:50:53 (Beijing Time)  Xinhua English

BEIJING, Nov. 18 (Xinhua) -- Cooperation between China and the United States in clean energy field is expected to reach a higher level as the two countries reached more agreements during U.S. President Barack Obama's China visit.

Market analysts expected a fruitful result of the enhanced cooperation between the two countries, but also expressed expectation for a further and more active core-technology exchange.

The two countries singed a joint statement on Tuesday, in which joint efforts to combat climate change and promote clean energy industry were highlighted.

Both China and the U.S. believed clean energy industry will provide vast opportunities for citizens in the years ahead, agreeing that "the transition to a green and low-carbon economy is essential."

"The two countries share similarities in combating climate change, seeking sustainable development, and ensuring energy safety," said Chen Fengying, director of Institute of World Economic Studies under China Institute of Contemporary International Relations.

Saying the U.S. "must have the courage and commitment to change," Obama mapped a "New Energy Policy" for his country at the beginning of the year, planning to invest 150 billion U.S. dollars in the next ten years to develop clean energy and research on core technology.

The move is expected to effectively reduce the U.S.'s reliance on tradition energy, such as oil, coal and gas, as well as creating about 5 million job positions, said analysts.

The U.S. government and Chinese government share the same view point on this issue. After 30 years of fast development, China finds it a preference to adjust its industrial structure, and seek a sustainable development through developing "new energy".

Last Month, Chinese President Hu Jintao said that the country would cut carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP by "a notable margin" in the decade to 2020, and to raise the share of non-fossil fuels in primary energy consumption to 15 percent by 2020.

At the Sino-U.S. clean energy round table conference held on Monday, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke admitted that clean energy technology is one of the most beneficial areas for U.S.-China cooperation.

Locke said he plans to lead an energy and trade mission to China next March, which would include U.S. firms from new energy technology sectors and make stops in Beijing, Shanghai and other cities.

"The U.S. has advanced clean energy technologies worldwide, while China has large market potential and outstanding production ability. The two countries expect fruitful results if they cooperate with each other," said Li Junfeng, deputy director of the Energy Research Institute under the National Development and Reform Commission.

Meanwhile, he pointed out that the U.S. needed to eliminate technology export control, promote technology exchange between the two countries and contribute to a win-win cooperation.

Chen Fengying said: "Cooperation between China and the U.S. hasa good start these years, but it was not likely for the U.S. to provide the core-technologies to China in consideration of the nation's interest."

According to Chen, the U.S. might not give China "what it is thirsty for" at present. There were still uncertainties in the cooperation between the two countries.

China and the U.S., however, agreed to establish a clean energy research center on Tuesday, which will facilitate joint research and development of clean energy technologies by teams of scientists and engineers from the two countries.

The research center will prioritize three topics including energy efficiency in buildings, clean coal, and clean vehicles. It will have one headquarter per country, with public and private funding of at least 150 million U.S. dollars over five years evenly split between the two countries.

U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, who also attended the round table conference, expressed optimism about U.S.-China cooperation in the deployment and development of clean energy technology.

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