China is actively accelerating the integrated development of next-generation information technology and manufacturing, in a bid to further promote digital transformation and foster high-quality development.
A new guideline dubbed the integrated development of the next-generation information technology and the manufacturing industry was approved on Tuesday during the 14th meeting of the Central Committee for Deepening Overall Reform.
The meeting urged efforts to accelerate the integration of the new information technology and manufacturing, speed up the innovative development of industrial internet, accelerate the fundamental transformation of manufacturing processes and enhance the level of digital, networked and intelligent modes of manufacturing.
Experts said the integration of the two sectors will help accelerate the comprehensive digital transformation of the manufacturing sector, provide strong impetus for high-quality economic development and support the upgrade of China's manufacturing capabilities to the mid-to high-end of the global value chain.
Zhang Li, head of the China Center for Information Industry Development, said digital transformation of manufacturing is crucial for coronavirus epidemic prevention and control and the upgrade of China's manufacturing industry.
"It will help further develop the industrial digital economy, optimize the allocation of manufacturing resources and raise the total-factor productivity. It will also help accelerate supply-side structural reform of the manufacturing sector and foster high-quality development in the long run," Zhang said in an article posted on the WeChat account of the Big Data Industry Alliance of China.
Zhang cited a white paper released by the World Economic Forum, saying manufacturing enterprises are expected to see positive effects of the digital transformation, with a predicted increase in revenue of 22.6 percent, and a 17.6-percent reduction in costs.
China's economy is currently transitioning from a phase of rapid development to a new stage of high-quality development, with a focus on innovation-driven economic growth and upgrade of the economic structure. The government has initiated a series of policies on digital transformation to catch up with advanced economies and inject new impetus into the economy.
Miao Wei, minister of industry and information technology, said during a recent news conference in Beijing that the ministry will continuously encourage the use of next-generation information technology to support epidemic prevention and control as well as work resumption and production. The ministry will make a big push to support the development of new technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence, industrial internet, the internet of things, internet of vehicles, big data and block chain.
Pan Helin, executive director of the Digital Economy Academy of the Zhongnan University of Economics and Law in Hubei, said enterprises are playing a key role in supporting the integration process, and thus the government needs to transform its functions.
"The government needs to offer more incentives to boost enterprise innovation, speed up the construction of infrastructure, create a better business environment, accelerate the upgrade of urban information infrastructure, and attract more talent and firms to participate in the digital industrial construction," Pan said.