Presiden China Hadiri APEC 2013
Image Source: APEC 2013
Richard Bell

More than £2bn in healthcare deals signed during Chinese presidential visit

Over £2bn in healthcare trade deals and partnerships has been signed between the UK and China during President Xi Jinping’s state visit this week.

George Freeman, Minister for Life Sciences, said the agreements between Chinese and British businesses, universities and other organisations would have a positive effect on not just the health of people in the UK and China, but also the rest of the world.

At the Life Science and Healthcare Business Forum yesterday (October 21), Mr Freeman said: “With a population of more than one billion and a rapidly developing economy, China is set to become the world’s fastest growing healthcare market.

“Today’s £2bn trade package for UK exports in research, hospital construction, training, diagnostics and drug discovery shows the huge potential of UK/Chinese Life Science trade.”

Some of the best scientists and academics have come from China and the UK, Mr Freeman said, with their advances saving or improving the lives of millions of people with serious illnesses like cancer.

Speaking further, the Life Sciences Minister said: “Cancer is the number one killer of people in the UK and China and like many nations we are in hot pursuit to find an effective treatment.

“Which is why collaborations such as those being announced today between Warwick University and Sun Yat-Sen University Cancer Centre on training and research to co-develop anti-cancer treatments are so important.”

Deals signed during the presidential visit include an agreement between Beijing healthcare firm United Imaging and the UK’s Cerno, which have partnered up to bring up-to-date oncology imaging technology to UK hospitals.

Elsewhere Kings College London, Glasgow Caledonian University and healthcare training company Annie Barr are offering training to Chinese health professionals in the cities of Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Shenzhen and Chengdu, to support the Chinese government’s aim to train 150k doctors and 2m nurses over the next five years.

Mr Freeman continued: “All of these collaborations announced today show how Chinese and UK organisations recognise each other’s potential. Together we have a real opportunity to make a difference to people’s lives and improve the health outcomes for millions across the globe.”

“UK leadership in Life Science is helping to support both UK economic growth and the sustainable development of emerging economies. This is a win-win for the NHS, UK and China.”

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