The Austrian Federal Chancellor visited Hong Kong

Intensifying bilateral relations in many fields


Photo: Minister Hofer visiting HKSTP

The Austrian Federal Chancellor Sebastian Kurz visited Hong Kong from 31. August to 2. September 2018. He was accompanied by Norbert Hofer, Federal Minister of Transport, Innovation and Technology, Heinz Faßmann, Federal Minister of Education, Science and Research, Margarete Schramböck, Minister of Digitalisation and Economics and the President of the Austrian Economic Chamber, Harald Mahrer. The visit aimed at deepening the bilateral cooperation in particular in the areas of education, scientific research and technological innovation. On August 31, the Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, Mrs Carrie Lam, met with Chancellor Kurz and the three Federal Ministers at the Government House of Hong Kong. Following that meeting the three ministers had a frank exchange of views with the Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr. Nicholas YANG. Ms Schramböck and Mr Faßmann also had meetings with their counterparts, Mr Bernard CHAN, Acting Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development, and Mr Kevin YEUNG Yun-hung, Secretary for Education. On September 1, the delegation visited i.a. Cyberport, the Science and Technology Park (HKSTP) and the Application Innovation Center of Lenzing in Hong Kong. The office for Science and Technology in Beijing supported the Austrian General Consulate in Hongkong in preparation of the visit.


First visit to the Science and Technology Department of Sichuan Province

Brighter sights for S&T cooperations with Western China


Photo: Meeting between BMVIT and SCST

02 August 2018 – Mr. Ingolf Schädler, Head of Innovation at the Austrian Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology, Dr. Margit Noll, Chair of the Management Board of JPI Urban Europe, and Mr. Max Pfeiler, Deputy Director of OSTA, paid a first visit to the Science and Technology Department of the Sichuan Province (SCST) in Chengdu. Both sides held fruitful talks and reached a deeper understanding during their meeting. Mr Schädler held a presentation on Research, Technology and Innovation (RTI) in Austria by introducing the state-of-the-art examples on smart city and emphasized the important role of BMVIT and FFG. Mr. Chen Xuehua, Deputy Director General of SCST presented the S&T achievements and developments as well as current international cooperations of the Province Sichuan. Both sides discussed the common interests on potential cooperation fields. Mr. Pfeiler reported on the next Austrian Technology Day in Chengdu scheduled for the autumn and SCST expressed its readiness to support this project.



The 2nd High-Level International Forum on Sustainable Urban Development

Austria as an Innovation Leader in Sustainable Urban Development

WeChat Image_20180801121510

Photo: HE Ambassador Dr. Stift held a presentation on the forum

01 August 2018 – The 2nd High-Level International Forum on Sustainable Urban Development, organised by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) and the China Center for Urban Development (CCUD), was opened in Chengdu. HE Ambassador Dr. Friedrich Stift held a presentation on Austrian cases of sustainable urban development with the example of the Smart City of Vienna. Mr. Ingolf Schädler, Head of Innovation at the Austrian Federal Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology, delivered a speech at the event and introduced the EU – Joint Programming Initiative URBAN EUROPE, underlying that new ways of citizens participation in urban development will be needed in order to tap the full potential of technology driven innovation within cities. Dr. Margit Noll, Chair of the Management Board of JPI Urban Europe, also held a presentation on Sustainable Urban Development. Deputy Director of OSTA, Mr. Max Pfeiler also attended the Forum and assisted the representatives from Austria.



OSTA accompanies Chengdu and CCUD Delegation to Austria

Determining common cooperation fields 

Photo: Representatives of BMVIT, CCUD, Chengdu DRC and OSTA

04 June 2018 – The Federal Ministry of Transport, Innovation and Technology of Austria (BMVIT) greeted distinguished guests from the Chengdu Development and Reform Commission and the China Center for Urban Development in Vienna. During their fruitful and result-orientated discussions the two delegations jointly talked about projects relating to JPI Urban Europe, Smart City, Positive Energy Efficient Buildings and Districts. Max Pfeiler, Deputy Director of OSTA, accompanied the delegation and provided valuable background information which facilitated the discussions.

At the end of the meeting both sides confirmed their readiness to swiftly engage in follow-up activities.


The 1st EU-China Tech Scale-up Summit opens in Chengdu

OSTA participates in this event

Photo: Company presentation on the summit 

Photo: Mr Agathonos, President Segree Dai and Ms Lara Zheng on discussion

Following an invitation by the EU Project Innovation Centre (EUPIC), Minister Plenipotentiary Agathonos attended the 1st EU-China Tech Scale-up Summit in Chengdu, which was organized with the support of the management committee of Chengdu High-tech Zone (CDHT) at the Headquarters of EUPIC. Other Co-organizer included Tech Tour, the International Venture Club and the European Network of Research and Innovation Centers and Hubs (ENRICH), China. This event attracted numerous CEOs, entrepreneurs and investors on the Networking Night on May 19. More than 20 companies gave presentations in the fields of Sustainability and Health on the Innovation Project Roadshow on May 19. B2B Matchmaking meetings were subsequently held.

On the margins of the event, Mr Agathonos met with Ms Segree Dai, the President of EUPIC (Chengdu) to discuss the preparation of the upcoming visit by a EUPIC-led delegation to Vienna on 8 June 2018, the possible assistance by EUPIC to boost the smart-city cooperation between Austria and the Tianfu New Area, the Austrian participation at the EU-CN Business and Technology Cooperation Fair to be held in Qingdao and Chengdu in September 2018 and the next edition of the Austrian Technology Day in Chengdu. Mr Agathonos also met Ms CHEN Xiaolin, Director of the publicity department of Youxian District committee, Mianyang and invited companies from Mianyang to participate at the next Austrian Technology Day in Chengdu. The possible site visits in Mianyang in the margins of the Technology Day will be further explored at a later stage.



BMVIT visits Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST)

Information exchange about joint programs in the framework of bilateral cooperation agreement

Gruppenfoto MOST
Photo: Mr. DONG Keqin, Mr. JIANG Xiaowei, Mr. Alexander Unkart, Mr. Philipp Agathonos

16 Mai 2018 – A delegation of the Austrian Ministry for Transport, Innovation and Technology represented by Mr. Alexander Unkart who was accompanied by Mr. Philipp Agathonos, Minister Plenipotentiary for Science and Technology and director of OSTA visited the Ministry of Science and Technology and met Mr. JIANG Xiaowei, Consultant of the MOST and Mr. DONG Keqin, Director at the China Science and Technology Exchange Center (CSTEC) and other representatives of MOST and CSTEC. Main topic of the fruitful discussions was the implementation of the cooperation agreement between MOST and BMVIT signed on 8 April 2018 and the definition of a roadmap for the first call for joint projects due in the first half of 2019. Both sides were confident, that their cooperation will be successful.




Infrastructure Minister Norbert Hofer visits Beijing

More matching points in fields of infrastructure, transport, innovation and technology

Photo: OSTA Director Philipp Agathonos, Minister Norbert Hofer at the bilateral meeting with MoST

Photo: Minister Norbert Hofer at the bilateral meeting with CR

The Minister for Transport, Innovation and Technology, Mr Norbert Hofer, who the accompanied the Austrian Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen during his state visit to China held a series of successful bilateral meetings in Beijing. OSTA prepared and assisted Minister Hofer during his stay.

On Monday, 9 April, Minister Hofer met the President of Huawei Europe and other senior representative of the company and discussed the potential arising from the application of new technologies, in particular 5G, in the field of telecommunication as well as the Cyber Security challenges linked to technological advancement.

Minister Hofer subsequently paid a visit to the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST) and had a frank exchange of views with the newly appointed S&T Minister Mr Zhigang WANG on how to fully exploit the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between BMVIT and MoST signed in front of the Presidents of the two countries on the previous day as well as cooperation strategies in the fields of smart city, energy buildings, green technology as well as infrastructure against natural disasters. Minister Hofer also signed with Mr WANG an MoU on the mobility of researchers on behalf of the Minister for Education, Science and Research, Mr Heinz Fassmann.

Accompanied by key representatives of the Austrian Federal Railways (ÖBB), Minister Hofer also paid a visit to the CRRC Corporation Limited and to China Rail (CR).  The focus of the talks lay on railway cooperation in the framework of the “Belt and Road” initiative and on rolling stock cooperation on freight corridors between China and Europe. Two MoUs between the ÖBB and the CRRC as well as the ÖBB and the China Railway Group (CRECG) were signed in the presence of Minister Hofer.

Minister Hofer finally visited the Ministry of Transport (MoT) and met his counterpart, minister Xiaopeng Li. Both ministers underlined the importance of transportation and logistics for today’s global economy, and emphasized the need for a coordinated and balanced development in this sector.

On Tuesday, the 10th of April, Minister Hofer opened the Austrian Technology Day, which was organized by OSTA (on behalf of the FFG) and the Austrian Chamber of Commerce and witnessed the signing of eight agreements between Austrian and Chinese partners.

Minister Hofer concluded his stay in Beijing at the Beijing Air Traffic Control Centre further expanding the transport cooperation from railways to aerospace.

Minister Hofer’s high-level talks in Beijing underlined that Transport, Innovation and Technology are a key element of Austria’s strategy for a closer relationship and deepened cooperation between Austria and China.

*The MoUs, which was signed by Minster Hofer in the Great Hall of the People in presence of the Austrian President Van der Bellen and the Chinese President XI Jinping, included:

(1) A Joint Declaration on the deepening of cooperation in the field of applied research and innovation between BMVIT and MoST;
(2) An Action Plan for the period 2018-2020 between BMVIT and MoT;
(3) A Common Declaration on future cooperation within regard to the silk road economic belt and the 21st century maritime silk road initiative between BMVIT and NDRC;
(4) A Memorandum of Understanding between BMVIT and SIPO.


Vienna Cyber Security Week 2018 was successfully held

“Cyber Security” as a non-negligible keyword for technologic development

Photo: Philipp Agathonos hosted the day 5 conference on Securing Smart Cities and Emerging Technologies (or gave a keynote speech?) 

The second edition of Vienna Cyber Security Week was successfully held from 29 January to 02 February 2018 in Diplomatic Academy of Vienna. The conference was organized by the Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs (BMEIA), all other relevant ministries including the Federal Chancellery, in collaboration with Austrian Institute of Technology (AIT), the Cybersecurity Platform and the Energypact Foundation.

National and international stakeholders attended the event aiming at further dialogue and cooperation in the field of cyber security for critical infrastructure with a focus on the energy sector. Ambassador Mikhail Konarovskiy, adviser to the Secretariat and Mr. Adilet Orozbekov, the Secretariat’s expert from the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) were present. Representatives from BMEIA, Federal Ministry for Digital, Business and Enterprise (BMDW), Federal Ministry of the Interior (BMI), International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC), AIT, Energy Foundation, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) etc. (noch mehr ergänzen?) gave impressive keynote speeches on different sessions of the event. A Chinese delegation from China Electronics Technology Group Corporation (CETC) presented its achievements to the delegates on Day 3 (Technology exhibition with a booth provided by AIT) and took part in the Day 5 conference on Securing Smart Cities and Emerging Technologies.

The five-day event offered a unique forum for both governmental and non-governmental partners to delve into substantive debates over the protection of critical energy infrastructure, combating cybercrime, cyber diplomacy and the future of technologic development in the energy sector.



EU-China Research and Innovation Tour comes successfully in Suzhou to an end

Further opportunities for science and technology cooperation with Austria

Photo: Philipp Agathonos held a speech about the current and potential cooperation with Austria in Hefei

After the launch of the EU-China Research and Innovation Tour at the Italian Embassy on 27th October 2017 in Beijing and the station on 1st November 2017 in Hangzhou, the Tour continued its track further to Shenzhen, Changsha, Wuhan, Hefei, Shanghai and ended on 1st December successfully in Suzhou. Representatives from the EU Delegation, Austria, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Switzerland and Croatia attended the events. They introduced their current situation on science, technology and innovation and presented opportunities for bilateral cooperation with China.

In Hefei station Austria was represented by OSTA Director Minister Plenipotentiary, Mr Philipp Agathonos. Max Pfeiler covered all other stations. They held speeches presenting the current and potential S&T cooperation between China and Austria. In Hefei Prof. Kai CHEN, Hefei National Laboratory for Physical Sciences at Microscale and Department of Modern Physics, University of Science and Technology of China (USTC), a collaborator of Austria’s most prominent Chinese alumnus, Prof. Jianwei PAN, gave a testimonial on cooperation in field of quantum communication following the speech of Mr Agathonos.

The EU-China Research and Innovation Tour received great responses from local S&T departments and created more opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation with a variety of covering areas in the promising future.



2017 China-Europe Research and Innovation Tour in Hangzhou

Presenting possibilities for science and technology cooperation with Austria


Photo: Max Pfeiler held a speech about the potential cooperation with Austria

On 1 November 2017, the second station of the EU-China Research and Innovation Tour 2017 was held at Hangzhou Dianzi University in Hangzhou, Province Zhejiang. Staff of OSTA, Mr Max Pfeiler, as well as representatives from the EU Delegation, the Netherlands, France, Italy and Spain attended the event. They introduced their current situation on science, technology and innovation and presented opportunities for bilateral cooperation with China.

Chinese representatives, such as Mr. WANG Jian, Deputy Director of Zhejiang Provincial Science and Technology Department, Mr. DONG Keqin, Director of the Division for European Affairs of MOST, Mr. ZHU Zefei, President of Hangzhou Dianzi University, participated actively in the event and announced their willingness to accelerate the EU-China cooperation activities.