China targets $10b software exports by 2010
Updated: 2006-10-10 11:06

BEIJING - China plans to boost its software exports to 10 billion US dollars by 2010, as part of its bid to evolve from a manufacturing powerhouse to a major player in innovation and services.

To reach the goal, China's software exports will have to grow by 25 percent per year, according to a document jointly issued by the Ministry of Commerce, the State Administration of Taxation (SAT) and seven other central authorities.

The document, posted on SAT's website, says the government's goal is to foster a group of globally competitive software firms with their own brands and intellectual property rights.

Software firms will receive preferential treatment in regard to taxation, borrowing and foreign exchange controls, among other areas.

In the face of increasing friction with major trading partners over goods, China has drafted an ambitious plan to increase trade in services from 160 billion dollars in 2005 to 400 billion dollars in 2010.

The development of the software industry is a key part of the strategy, the document says.

According to figures from the Ministry of Commerce, China exported 3.6 billion dollars worth of software and related services in 2005, a rise of 28 percent year on year.