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IT ministry warns of tough year

GROWTH in the electronics and information technology industries in China will "dramatically decline" in the first quarter of this year and the manufacturing sector will suffer heavy losses this year due to the financial crisis, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said yesterday on its Website.

In 2009, revenue in the IT industry is expected to grow 12 percent year-on-year, lower than 2008's growth of 13 percent.

Income for the software industry is expected to grow 22 percent to 25 percent, lower than 2008's 29.8 percent growth. IT spending is expected to increase less than 3 percent.

"It's going to be a tough year," said the ministry. "Exports will continue to fall and some sectors' profits will be hit hard, such as the integrated circuit and circuit-printing industries. The government will launch policies to support the IT industry, with an emphasis on 3G-related investment."

China's exports fell 17.5 percent in January, the most in almost 13 years. Chinese manufacturers shipped 559.6 million mobile phones last year, only 2 percent more than a year earlier. Shipments of TVs increased 6.5 percent to 90.3 million.



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