URUMQI, Jan. 3 (Xinhua) -- A memorandum has been signed by the Xinjiang Institute of Ecology and Geography and 22 overseas scientific research institutes, launching joint research projects on the ecosystem in central Asia.
Over the next five years, the institutes will focus on the region's glaciers, water resources, flora and fauna, as well as agriculture, in the context of global climate change.
The memorandum is the second phase of a program launched between China and four central Asia countries in 2012 to study climate change in the region.
In the first phase as of 2017, the Xinjiang ecology research institute and several organizations from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan carried out cooperation in global climate, bio-diversity and geologic disasters.
In the second phase, research organizations from the United States, Belgium and Austria, as well as China's Hong Kong, will participate in joint research, which will focus on water resources and agricultural and environmental sustainable development in Belt and Road countries.
Bordering central Asia, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region accounts for about 70 percent of international scientific and technological cooperation between China and countries in the region.