US-based IT giant IBM is the eighth top world multinational corporation to enter the Dalian Software Park in this open coastal city of northeast China's Liaoning Province.
The other seven are GE and Accenture of the United States; Sony, Matsushita Telecom, Mitsubishi and Toshiba of Japan; and Nokia of Finland.
IBM signed an agreement with the software park recently to set up a joint research and development center, its second in China after launching one in Shenzhen, a special economic zone in south China's Guangdong Province.
The R&D center deals largely in software contracts from Japan, according to company officials.
So far, the initial office quarter of the R&D center has been put into use.
Since its founding in 1998, the Dalian Software Park, one of 11 existing state software industry bases across China, has enrolled 130 companies, of which 90 percent are software businesses. Some 33 companies entered the park last year, of which10 are Japanese businesses and 4 transnationals that are listed among the world's top 500 companies.
Last year the park realized 800 million yuan (US$96.39 million) in output value and US$25 million in export earnings.
(Xinhua News Agency February 9, 2003)