Economy Mar 30

Industry back to ’99%’ capacity: Ministry

Ministry official says workers are flocking back after nationwide coronavirus shutdown 

by Xu Jiangshan and Yang Zhijie
China industry back to ’99%’ capacity
Re-employment rates in China’s major industries is at 90%, according to Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.   

(ATF) – China is open for business again.

That was the message from Xin Guobin, deputy minister of China's Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, who said China's regulated industries were operating at 98.6% of capacity following a nationwide shutdown to halt the spread of coronavirus.

The claimed turnaround comes as authorities reopen parts of Wuhan to travel and after lifting restrictions that had kept its 11 million citizens behind closed doors for three months since the coronavirus first emerged in the central Hubei provincial capital.

In a statement that struck on optimistic tone, Xin said more investment would be sunk into rebuilding the economy.

“We will speed up the construction of key projects and follow up the landing of major projects, accelerate the construction of new infrastructure such as 5G networks and data centers,” Xin added.

At a press conference on Monday Xin said the the average turnover rate of personnel was 89.9% in the larger business and 76% for small and medium-sized enterprises.

The daily average increase in people returning to work has been one percentage point since March, Xin added. Also, the pace of construction has substantially accelerated.

Re-employment rates in the steel and electronics industries are all more than 90% and in the the textile, machinery and light industries, the average is between 70% and 90%.

In terms of high and new technologies, the output growth rate of consumers upgrading products such as smart watches and smart bracelets, as well as high-tech products like semiconductor-discrete devices, had held up, Xin said.

As of March 26, there were 76 models of 5G mobile phone products in China, with a cumulative shipment of more than 26 million units, of which more than 13 million units will be shipped this year.

Xin said that the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology will expand demand and stabilize consumption in traditional industries. Among those likely to get a boost will be automobiles, light textile and household appliances. 

The government would also seek to encourage “consumption hotspots” in education, health and care for the elderly and telemedicine as well green products.