China boosts emerging industries and new quality productive forces, sees economic rebound

The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) highlighted rapid advancements in emerging industries and new quality productive forces during a press conference on Thursday, with a focus on sectors such as 5G, smart and high-tech manufacturing, which have seen significant achievements in recent months.

The MIIT is committed to integrating technological and industrial innovations to foster a modern industrial system led by advanced manufacturing. The ministry is pushing for upscale, intelligent and green development, said Vice Minister of Industry and Information Technology Shan Zhongde, emphasizing the acceleration of China’s new industrialization strategy, which is increasingly underpinned by high-tech and emerging industries.

Experts noted that data from the industrial sectors in the first quarter indicate that China is intensifying its innovation-driven approach and accelerating technological development. This plays a crucial role in cultivating new quality productive forces and driving the recovery of the industrial economy.

In the first quarter, the total value added of industrial enterprises above the designated size rose 6.1 percent year-on-year, a fastest growth rate in eight quarters. High-tech manufacturing and emerging sectors drove this surge, showing China’s capabilities in high-end production and innovation, Wang Peng, an associate research fellow at the Beijing Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Thursday.

In the rapidly developing industrial sector, industries such as information and communications, intelligent and green manufacturing, and digital infrastructure have achieved rapid growth in the first quarter. These areas have become new highlights in the growth of the industrial economy.

Zhao Zhiguo, a spokesperson for the MIIT, noted that telecommunications revenue in China reached 443.7 billion yuan ($61.3 billion) in the first quarter, up 4.5 percent year-on-year.

The MIIT will continue to push the integration of 5G with big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence, said Zhao.

The expansion of 5G networks promises to enhance the scope and efficiency of critical real-time applications like telemedicine and autonomous driving, Wang explained, noting the development could lead to further industrial growth.

Shan highlighted smart manufacturing as another key growth area, with the industry now exceeding a production value of 3.2 trillion yuan. “The MIIT will focus on promoting intelligent manufacturing, and digital and green transformation among enterprises,” he added.

The development of smart manufacturing will not only elevate China’s industrial base but also position it to compete globally in high-value manufacturing, said Wang.

China’s industrial economic growth is innovation-led, and structural reforms have further stimulated the momentum for innovation, Hu Qimu, a deputy secretary-general of the digital-real economies integration Forum 50, told the Global Times on Thursday.

China stimulates innovations and cultivates new productive forces in various ways, including a recent plan to promote large-scale renewals of equipment and trade-ins of consumer goods, as well as multiple measures to improve the business environment. The aim is to assist industries in developing more effectively, Hu explained.

Amid these advances, overall industrial confidence and market demand remain strong, supporting an optimistic outlook for sustained growth. “Key reasons behind the growth were the high market demand, confident businesses and strong development momentum,” stated Shan.

Investment in manufacturing rose by 9.9 percent year-on-year, and key sectors such as vehicles achieved 10.6 percent year-on-year growth, while consumption of home appliances grew by 5.8 percent, Shan noted.

According to an MIIT survey of 36,000 key enterprises, 76 percent expect their output in the second quarter to grow or remain stable.

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