China exported traditional Chinese medicine to 164 countries and regions around the world last year, with export earnings reaching an all-time high of US$830 million, according to the China Association of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
The export earnings represented a 14.55 percent increase from the previous year.
However, the export only accounted for 6 percent of China's total export of medicine products and most of the earnings came from the export of low value-added extracted herbal substances and raw materials, according to the customs.
Last year, China earned US$69.57 million from the export of extracted herbal substances.
Experts here said as the world's major production base of herbal medicine, China should intensify efforts to develop and export more high value-added patent medicine.
Customs statistics also show that China imported US$240 million of herbal medicines last year, rising by 6.4 percent year on year and accounting for 2 percent of the total import of medicine products.
(Xinhua News Agency May 7, 2006)