Blueprint to upgrade China’s manufacturing industry taking shape

Beijing, March 5:

A plan for upgrading China’s manufacturing industry by 2025, eventually helping the country become a strong industrial power by 2050, would soon be submitted to the Chinese cabinet, said a member of China’s top advisory body.

trade deficitThe ministry of industry and information technology and the Chinese Academy of Engineering were working on the plan, which proposed that China achieve industrialisation by 2020 and become a strong industrial power by 2050, the People’s Daily quoted Li Yizhong, a member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) as saying on Wednesday.

China should focus on developing the real economy and prevent the marginalising of industry, Li added.

According to earlier media reports, the plan aims to shift China’s manufacturing industry to a model driven by innovation, quality advantages and featuring green manufacturing and service-oriented manufacturing.

Discussions about whether China has lost its advantages in manufacturing have gathered steam following reports that Chinese customers swamped Japanese stores to buy Japanese-made toilet seats and electronic rice cookers during this year’s Spring Festival holidays.

There have also been reports that some Japanese companies such as Panasonic and Daikin Industries plan to move their manufacturing bases in China back to Japan.

“China is a big manufacturing country, but not a manufacturing superpower. The key reason lies in China’s lack of core technologies,” Chen Yao, director of the Institute of Industrial Economics at the Chinese Academy of Social ­Sciences, told the People’s Daily.

“But that does not mean China has lost all its advantages in manufacturing,” Chen said. “Compared with developed economies, China still enjoys an advantage in labour costs and compared with southeast Asian countries, China has the complete infrastructure to support industrial manufacturing.”

China’s manufacturing output grew 9.4 percent in 2014 from a year earlier, which amounted to 1.1 percentage points higher than the growth of the national industrial output.

High-end manufacturing output expanded 12.3 percent year-on-year in 2014, accounting for 10.6 percent of the national industrial output. On the other hand, equipment manufacturing rose 10.5 percent year-on-year in 2014, making up 30.4 percent of the national industrial output.

“China needs to consolidate its advantages in traditional manufacturing and at the same time boost its capability to develop its high-end equipment manufacturing industries,” Cai Jin, vice-chairman of the China Federation of Logistics and Purchasing, said.

“Upgrading the manufacturing industry also means upgrading the management model of the whole industrial supply chain,” Cai added. IANS

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