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Quad to promote 5G, biotech co-op

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Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga (right) attends an online Quad meeting at the Prime Minister’s Office in March. THE YOMIURI SHIMBUN

Quad to promote 5G, biotech co-op

In a bid to take the lead in creating international standards, the Quad international framework will promote cooperation in areas such as the development of 5G wireless communications and biotechnology, according to a draft obtained by the Yomiuri Shimbun.

The call for cooperation among member nations of Japan, Australia, India and the US will be part of a joint statement to be compiled at a Quad summit on September 24. The four countries are expected to emphasise mutual efforts on advanced technology.

The Quad’s leaders will meet for the first time in person in Washington, and are expected to also include in their joint statement collaboration on climate change and measures against the novel coronavirus pandemic.

In the draft obtained by the Yomiuri Shimbun, the four nations say they have built cooperative relations based on shared values and respect for human rights, and will lead the world toward open, high-level technology.

As for 5G technology, the Quad nations present a policy in the draft to promote the creation of a highly reliable network that is safe, open and transparent. They also aim to develop a comprehensive 5G system of ultrahigh-speed, large-volume wireless communications by 2022 through public-private partnerships in the four countries.

The draft also refers to cooperation in the field of biotechnology, which is becoming increasingly important in viral analysis and pharmaceutical development amid the Covid-19 pandemic.

Among emerging technologies, the US is focusing on maintaining its dominance in biotechnology. The four countries will pursue cooperation in joint research, data sharing and the training of experts in technologies including genetic analysis to study the nature of new pathogens, research and development of biopharmaceuticals, and genome editing to cut and paste genes within a cell.

The statement will also call for cooperation to diversify supply chains for key products, such as semiconductors, of which there are increasingly serious shortages worldwide.

The four nations aim to create international standards under the leadership of the private sector in the field of artificial intelligence. Ethical issues have been pointed out with regard to facial recognition tools.



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