In terms of production, statistics released by the NDRC showed that China’s high-tech industry raked in around 3.1 trillion yuan in revenue between January and June this year, up by around 20% year-to-year.
Among the figures, high-tech manufacturing production registered an accumulative growth rate of 17.6%, higher than the nation’s large-scale industry production growth rate of 16.3%.
The high-tech manufacturing industry invested 176.7 billion yuan in fixed assets, an increase of 19.9% compared with the same period last year. At the same time, the ratio of high-tech manufacturing to all large-scale industries rose to 10%, edging 0.1 percentage points up from last year.
On the export front, China’s high and new technology products performed very well. China’s foreign trade growth is slowing this year due to the US sub-prime mortgage crisis, the rising RMB exchange rates, the domestic credit crunch and mounting costs in raw material and labor.
However, exports from the high-tech industry demonstrated strong growth and vitality. Reporters learned from the NDRC’s Department of High-tech Industry that exports of high and new technology products reached US $195.8 billion between January and June this year, up by 21.7% year-to-year. This figure accounted for 29.4% of the nation’s total export volume.
Strengthening independent innovation capabilities is a crucial step for China’s high-tech industry to have a head start in the international market. The High-tech Industry Development Program of the 11th Five-Year Plan released by NDRC in 2007, emphasized that China must speed up its high-tech industry’s transformation from focusing on processing and assembling to independent research, development and manufacturing.
The nation must also enhance its independent innovation capabilities as a basic strategic point.
The program requires that by 2010 the number of patents issued to China’s high-tech enterprises double and the value added by independently developed high-tech manufacturing reach over 50%.
During the last 10 years when high-tech industrialization was promoted, China implemented 58 special projects and 2,948 demonstration projects for the high-tech industry, covering various areas including information, biology and modern agriculture.
Since 2007, China’s independent innovation capabilities in the high-tech industry have further improved. In 2007, construction started on four major national science and technology infrastructure projects, six national engineering laboratories and nine national engineering research centers. In addition, 124 national business technology centers garnered funding to improve their innovation capabilities.
The formation of industrial clusters is an inevitable trend in global high-tech industrial development. It is also a strategic path for high-tech industrial development.
An official at the Department of High-tech Industry, which is part of the NDRC, said China has made remarkable achievements in high-tech industrial construction, while cluster development of the high-tech industry is particularly strengthening. Take bio-industry as an example: initial statistics show that the gross industrial output of the 22 national bio-industry bases accounts for over 70% of the nation’s bio-industry’s total production.
This year, the nation constructed an additional 37 national high-tech industrial bases on top of the existing 35 high-tech industrial bases in fields covering biology, information technology, new materials, new energy, aviation and aerospace.