In addition to the EU-China Co-Funding Mechanism, bilateral agreements for joint projects have also been signed by the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology with selected foreign governments or international organisations. Calls for these “intergovernmental cooperation programmes” (which are labeled as “National Key R&D Programmes”) are published on an annual basis, usually in two or three batches.
Currently, there exist joint projects with 13 EU Member States (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Finland, France, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, and United Kingdom), as well as within international programmes / institutions such as CERN, SKA, GIF, “Belt and Road”, etc.
The proposed first annual call for 2019 includes joint programmes with Sweden, Austria, Denmark, Italy and Malta. This call only regulates the application and participation of the Chinese side (China-based affiliates of entities from these countries can apply from the Chinese side).
Ministry of Science and Technology (China); line authorities in the partner country
Total budget to be allocated
Sweden: 10 million RMB for around 4 projects
Austria: 30 million RMB for max 15 projects
Denmark: 20 million RMB for 4-5 projects
Italy: 16 million RMB for around 4 projects
Malta: 4.8 million RMB for around 3 projects
Specific subjects and topics
Sweden: life sciences; transports safety.
Austria: quantum computing; ICT; healthcare and medical (including traditional Chinese medicine); intelligent manufacturing; renewable energy and low-carbon technologies; food, agriculture and biotechnologies; environment, smart cities and sustainable urbanisation.
Denmark: energy and storage; smart city and transports.
Italy: marine technologies; modern precise agriculture; information technologies (Artificial Intelligence oriented to intelligent manufacturing); customised healthcare and innovative biomaterials for medical equipment.
Malta: marine services, technologies and aquaculture; transports; digital technologies
Requirements vary depending on the partner country and the bilateral agreement signed with MOST.
Applicants from the Chinese side should also generally follow the rules and procedures governing National Key R&D Programmes, particularly the Interim Measures for the Management of National Key R&D Programmes and the Fund Management Measures for National Key R&D Programmes. These generally include: possession of independent legal person status in mainland China, usually for around 1 year before the date of publication of the CFM call. Possession of strong R&D capacities with experience in international cooperation; Age requirements (generally not exceeding 60) and academic title for PIs; time to be dedicated in the proposed project (usually at least 6 or 9 months per year); limit on the total number of projects currently under implementation, especially if already receiving funding from other national projects (in which case the PI is not eligible for the CFM). Scientists of foreign nationalities recruited by China-based entities can be presented as PIs; etc.
Applications from the European side are not regulated by this call or by MOST.
Date of publication
19 December 2020
Deadline for submitting comments
31 December 2020
Comments sent to: email@example.com
Original call in Chinese (copy-paste in browser)
- National Key R&D Programme
- International cooperation