China's export volume of ships hit a record high of 5.49 billion US dollars in the first half of the year, up 61 percent over the same period last year, according to figures from the General Administration of Customs.
For the first time China overtook Japan to rank the second in terms of vessel order book tonnages, a major shipbuilding index, and took up 28 percent share of the world market, according to the London-based Clarkson, a firm specializing in the global shipbuilding market analysis.
China's shipbuilding industry scored an output value of 101.7 billion yuan (13.4 billion US dollars) in the first six months, a rise of 48 percent over the same period last year, according to statistics issued by the management office for shipbuilding industry under the Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National Defense (CSTIND).
The aggregate profits reaped by shipbuilding manufactures more than doubled to reach 6.4 billion yuan (842.1 million US dollars).
Ship production has been increasing by more than 40 percent annually in recent years, as its low labor cost kept attracting more orders, analysts said.
The exported ships take up 83 percent of the ship output in China, and China is exporting to 128 countries and regions, with Singapore, Germany and Hong Kong Special Administrative Region as its major importers, the CSTIND said.
However, China is far behind the Republic of Korea (ROK) and Japan in terms of contract value, because China lacks advanced equipment and lags behind the two countries in research and development capability.
The ROK, the world's top shipbuilder, exported 22.1 billion US dollars worth of ships last year.