The National Bureau of Statistics reported that China has spent more than 580 billion Yuan (about $87 billion) in scientific research and development (R&D) in 2009, making China the world's fourth major investor after the US, Japan and Germany. Recently, the findings were published as a part of the national Research and Development resources survey, held for the second time in the country.
In 2009, over three million people were involved in the country's various scientific research and development programmes, which is the largest number in the world, described Cha Zhimin, Deputy Director of the society and science department of NBS.
Of the 580.21 billion Yuan, the government invested 135.83 billion Yuan on research and development in 2009 about 4.5 times that in 2000, indicating the government's keen interest to boost innovation. However, the ratio of research and development investment against GDP stood at 1.7%, far behind three percent in leading countries across the world. China still remained far below many developed countries in original innovations.