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Electronics industry gets a lift

CHINA yesterday approved a plan to boost the country's electronics and information industries by providing additional investment and promoting the expansion of 3G mobile communications and other high-tech services.

The government will promote innovation, increase financing and foster the use of information technologies across many fields over the next three years under decisions made at an executive meeting of the State Council chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao.

The Cabinet members said the plan would tie in with the central government's effort to boost domestic consumption in the face of weakening global demand for Chinese exports.

Investment will focus on promoting the use of third-generation mobile communication services and digital TVs.

Efforts will be made to develop national science and technology projects and improve public technological service platforms.

The Cabinet also agreed to promote outsourcing and to encourage electronics and information enterprises to venture overseas to build research and development centers, production bases and marketing networks.

More policy support will also be given to the sector, including tax rebates for electronics and information product exports, the Cabinet said.

The latest effort joins support plans for the auto, steel, shipbuilding, textile and machinery manufacturing industries that were unveiled earlier.

China's imports and exports of electronics and information products reached US$885.4 billion last year, up 10 percent from the year before, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology noted yesterday.

Exports rose 13.6 percent to US$521.8 billion, which accounted for more than a third of China's total last year. Imports expanded 5.4 percent to US$363.7 billion, or 32.1 percent of the country's total.

More than 75 percent of the industry's exports last year were telecommunications products, computers and home audio and video products.

But, in value terms, more than 80 percent of the exports were only processed or assembled in China with materials supplied by overseas clients, the ministry said.

In the domestic market, China's electronics and information industry raked in 6.3 trillion yuan (US$950.3 billion) in revenue from the sector's major operations, up 12.5 percent year on year. The ministry expects the industry's revenue from the domestic market to grow by 12 percent this year, the same as in 2008.


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