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High-tech gains a state priority
By Li Dapeng (China Daily)
Updated: 2004-07-09 00:35

To accelerate development and channel more capital to high-tech industry, three central government departments Thursday issued guidelines granting priorities to the sector.

The guidelines, crafted by the National Development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Commerce, are expected to greatly enhance the economy and social development.

High priority is placed on 10 categories, including information technology, bio-tech and new medicines, new materials, manufacturing, resource development, environmental protection, aeronautics and astronautics, agriculture and transportation.

Since 1998, the country has been strengthening its support for high-tech, and has made significant technological breakthroughs on problems stifling development.

For the past few years, the government has tried to attract capital and highly trained people to the sector, and placed additional to research and development.

Due to the nation's macroeconomic controls, in recent years the sector has become an important player in helping to sustain stable and coordinated growth.

Commission figures show the output value from high-tech industry last year grew to 2,700 billion yuan (US$326 billion) from 1,090 billion yuan (US$132 billion) in 1999, with a staggering annual average growth rate of 25.5 per cent.

And the sector's export volume reached US$110 billion, up by 45.3 per cent from US$24.7 billion in 1999.

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