by: Christine Zhen-Wei Qiang
Since 1997, China has devoted considerable resources to information
and communications technology (ICT) development. China has the
world's largest telecommunications market, and its information
technology industry has been an engine of economic growth—growing
two to three times faster than GDP over the past 10 years. E-government
initiatives have achieved significant results, and the private sector
has increasingly used ICT for production and service processes,
internal management, and online transactions.
The approaching 10-year mark provides an excellent opportunity to
update the policy to reflect the evolving needs of China's economy.
These needs include the challenges posed by industrialization,
urbanization, upgraded consumption, and social mobility. Developing a
more effective ICT strategy will help China to achieve its economic and
social goals. Addressing all the critical factors is complex and
requires long-term commitment. This book highlights several key issues
that need to be addressed decisively in the second half of this decade,
through policies entailing institutional reform, to trigger broader
This books is the result of 10 months of strategic research by a
World Bank team at the request of China's State Council
Informatization Office and the Advisory Committee for State
Informatization. Drawing on background papers by Chinese researchers,
the study provides a variety of domestic perspectives and local case
studies and combines these perspectives with international experiences
on how similar issues may have been addressed in other countries.
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