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Health Minister Jonathan Coleman and Science and Innovation Minister Paul Goldsmith have welcomed the signing of a bilateral cooperation arrangement in biomedical research between New Zealand and China.

The arrangement between the Health Research Council of New Zealand (HRC) and China’s National Natural Science Foundation (NSFC) was signed by HRC Chair Dr Lester Levy and NSFC Vice President Dr Liu Congqiang today.

“The Government has improving cancer care as a priority, with faster access and more support during treatment. This arrangement will help further build on these improvements and contribute to even better outcomes for patients,” says Dr Coleman.

“We want a health research system in which researchers, Government agencies and the commercial sector work together to get the best outcomes.

“A more integrated system will deliver new treatments, new drugs and new technologies more quickly, both to improve the health of New Zealanders and for export overseas.”

“This arrangement aims to strengthen existing and establish new collaborations in biomedical sciences between Chinese and New Zealand researchers from universities and research institutions,” says Mr Goldsmith.

“The Government hopes it will foster breakthroughs in biomedical research that will advance the global development of science and technology.

“It will also help to promote the mobility and career development of researchers within joint projects.

“The signing of this arrangement is a huge step in the right direction, and specific details of collaborative opportunities will be developed over the coming months.”

Background information:

China’s National Natural Science Foundation manages the National Natural Science Fund, aimed at promoting and financing basic and applied research in China.

This announcement builds on a number of existing programmes to support science partnerships with China, including the establishment of three Government-funded New Zealand-China Research Collaboration Centres in 2016 to support better scientific engagement with China in water research, food safety and security, and non-communicable diseases.

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