Machinery, electrical and high-tech industries became Beijing’s pillar export sectors last year.
Statistics from the Beijing Foreign Economic and Trade Commission revealed that the capital city’s machinery and electrical exports hit US$2.6 billion last year, a 91 percent increase on 1999.
The export volume for high-tech industries reached US$1.66 billion for the period of January-November 2000, accounting for 39.6 percent of the city’s total exports. The sector’s growth rate was up 121.2 percent on the previous year.
Last year, 359 agreements for technology exports involving US$144 million were signed, of which 352 were software export projects.
Experts said the growth was the result of central government’s policies to expand the export of high value-added and high technology content products.
The municipal government has also taken major efforts to overhaul the city’s industrial sector.
To meet the challenges brought about by China’s pending entry into WTO, the municipal government has encouraged enterprises to increase international trade.
A total of 20 overseas investment projects involving US$53 million, 10 times that of 1999, have been approved by the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Cooperation.
Among the projects, the proportion of the investment on technology research and development surged, but because of the repercussions of the Asian financial crisis, the city’s building contracts with Southeast Asian companies slumped.
During the ninth Five-Year Plan period (1996-2000), a group of Beijing’s key state-owned enterprises, including the Capital Iron and Steel Corporation, the Great Wall Building Co. Ltd. and Tongrentang Group, have successfully set up subsidiaries or joint ventures in the United States, Japan and South Africa.
During the next Five-Year Plan perior(2001-05), the municipal government will not only support qualified enterprises to apply for overseas operation rights but also strengthen its management of building projects involving foreign companies.
A specific international economic cooperation website is expected to be launched this year.
(China Daily 01/22/2001)