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Hong Kong: Harnessing Tech for Energy Innovation

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The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU), Xi’an Jiaotong University (XJTU), the State Grid Corporation of China (State Grid), and The Hongkong Electric Company, Limited (HK Electric) have announced the extension of their collaborative programme, now renamed “Belt and Road Advanced Programme in Power and Energy,” for an additional four years. This programme, initially launched in 2018, has been pivotal in supporting the training and development of over 800 professionals from more than 20 countries and regions, aiding the Belt and Road Initiative.

Image Credits: PoyU, Press Release

The new phase of the programme, running until 2028, aims to enhance efficiency and drive innovation in the power industry. A significant focus will be on conducting on-site research in Belt and Road countries and regions, with the objective of developing tailored solutions for local power infrastructure and system operations. This initiative is designed to foster economic growth by considering the unique geographical environments and technological capabilities of each region.

Over the past six years, the programme has facilitated professional development through thematic seminars on the latest industry and research developments, cultural visits, and tours to advanced power plants and research establishments in Jinan, Xi’an, and Hong Kong. This collaborative effort supports Mainland China’s call for high-quality Belt and Road cooperation, combining the expertise of the two universities and two power companies from Mainland China and Hong Kong.

The Dean of the Faculty of Engineering at PolyU emphasised the university’s commitment to contributing research and knowledge to the Belt and Road region. He noted that the four-year extension of the agreement underscores this strategic priority, leveraging collective expertise to drive breakthroughs in green energy. The programme serves as an invaluable platform for researchers and senior leaders across the region to engage in meaningful exchanges on critical energy challenges and solutions. This collaboration aims to strengthen ties and address the shared goal of achieving a sustainable energy future.

The Academician of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Dean of the Faculty of Electronic and Information Engineering at XJTU highlighted the importance of innovation in electric power and energy technologies. He pointed out that these innovations are crucial for the development of green energies, economic growth, and new quality productive forces. He stressed that the programme plays a significant role in connecting Belt and Road countries and regions, and its continued implementation will deepen cooperation among all partners. This collaboration is expected to contribute to mutual development in the power and energy sector and support the Belt and Road initiative.

The President of State Grid of China Technology College (SGTC) expressed satisfaction with the successful partnership developed over the past six years. He noted that the programme has become a model for university-enterprise collaboration and Mainland China-Hong Kong cooperation in the context of the Belt and Road Initiative. This collaboration has enabled energy and power industry stakeholders from Belt and Road countries and regions to gain a comprehensive understanding of China’s power and energy landscape.

Looking forward, the SGTC President stressed the importance of staying attuned to emerging trends in global energy governance and supporting China’s carbon neutrality goals through high-quality, branded, and serialised exchange programmes. He reiterated the commitment to leveraging this platform to further the Belt and Road’s mission of strengthening regional economic, energy, and sustainability ties.

The Managing Director of HK Electric discussed the challenges of supplying electricity to a densely populated city like Hong Kong. He highlighted the development of a transmission and distribution system tailored to Hong Kong’s unique needs, which includes submarine and underground cables as well as cable tunnels. He noted the global power and utilities industry’s challenge of strengthening the power grid to withstand increasingly frequent extreme weather events. He expressed eagerness to share HK Electric’s experiences and insights with programme participants while learning from their experiences to enhance Hong Kong’s power system further.

The programme’s extension underscores its role as a leading global hub for capacity building in the power and energy sectors, supporting the overarching goals of the Belt and Road Initiative through innovative and collaborative efforts.

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