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Software Industry Gets Help
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China aims to increase the number of software export bases to up to 15 by 2010 to boost the fledgling software export and outsourcing industry, said Yi Xiaozhun, vice-minister of commerce.


China currently has six software export bases, in Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Dalian in Liaoning Province, Shenzhen in Guangdong Province, and Xi'an, of Shaanxi Province.


Yi said: "Exports of software and information services will play a leading role in the service sector in China." China's service trade last year was worth US$158.2 billion, accounting for 10.9 percent of total trade, far lower than the world average of 19 percent.


He said the Chinese Government had already set a goal of raising service trade turnover to US$400 billion by 2010.


Lou Qinjian, vice-minister of the information industry, said traditionally China's software industry focused on domestic consumption, which had led to a relatively low level of software exports.


According to the Ministry of Information Industry (MII), software exports will reach US$12.5 billion by 2010, more than triple the figure for 2005, which was US$3.59 billion.


"Software outsourcing is a shortcut that will allow the Chinese software industry to catch up with developed countries," said Yi.


He said that by getting involved in outsourcing, Chinese software companies would absorb cutting-edge practices and products.


Beijing-based research house Analysys believes China's software outsourcing market reached 2.6 billion yuan (US$324 million) in the first quarter of this year.


(China Daily June 22, 2006)


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