Photographer: Gilles Sabrie/Bloomberg

China Targets $900 Billion in Technology Consumption by 2020

  • State Council aiming to expand purchases by 11% per year
  • Spending on wearable devices, drones and robots encouraged

China said it will encourage more consumption of information technology-related products and services to help promote innovation and support economic growth.

The government plans to expand the scale of IT consumption by 11 percent a year to 6 trillion yuan ($900 billion) by 2020, the State Council said in a statement Thursday. That objective includes everything from digital products such as drones and wearable devices to services such as online medical consulting, entertainment and travel booking.

Policy makers have encouraged consumption and services as key pillars of growth in order to reduce dependence on old smokestack sectors. The State Council, China’s cabinet, said last month that it aims to make the artificial intelligence industry a "new, important" driver of economic growth by 2020.

IT is one of the most innovative and fastest-growing sectors of the economy, and it plays a key role in underpinning demand, promoting employment and industrial upgrading, the State Council said in the statement. Domestic demand needs to be further boosted, it said.

— With assistance by Xiaoqing Pi

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