China at a Glance

·        China’s GDP rose from 7.4 trillion Yuan (U.S.$891.6 billion) in 1997 to 10.2 trillion Yuan (U.S. $1.2 trillion) in 2001- an average annual increase of 7.7 percent.

·        Total fiscal revenue rose from 865.1 billion Yuan (US$104.2 billion) in 1997 to 1.8914 trillion Yuan (U.S. $227.9 billion) in2002, an annual average annual increase of 205.3 billion Yuan (U.S.$24.7 billion).

·        Foreign exchange reserves climbed from U.S.$139.9 billion to U.S.$286.4 billion.

·        In these five years, China invested 1.2343 trillion Yuan (U.S. $148.7 billion) in highway building, which was equal to 1.7 times the figure for period from 1950 to 1997.

·        The total length of highways open to traffic increased from 1.23 million kilometers in 1997 to 1.76 million K.M. in 2002, of which express ways increase from 4.771 K.M. to 25,200 KM, lifting China from 39th to the second place in the world.

·        Railway length increased from 65,969 KM to 75,500 KM, over the years, construction of 5,944 KM of new railway lines, of which4,603 KM are doubt track and 5,704 KM are electrified was completed.

·        A total of 50 airports were either newly built or expanded.

·        The number of fixed line and mobile phone subscribes increased from 83.54 million to 421 million, ranking China first in the world.

·        Six forest ecological projects reforesting formerly cultivated land, protecting natural forests and controlling the sources of dust storms affecting Beijing on Tianjin- were called out in full.

* During this five years, an additional 27.87 million hectares of land was covered with trees; 31.53 million hectares covered of hills were cordoned off for afforest ration, and about 3.82 million hectares of formerly cultivated lands were returned to forests.

* Soil erosion on 266,000 Sq K.M. of land and desertification on about 5.7 million hectares of land were brought under control.

* All eligible urban residents were by our large provider for social security programmes.

* New co-operative medical care system in rural areas were launched.

* The combine volume of imports and exports increased from U.S.$ 325.2 billion in 1997 to U.S.$ 620.8 billion in 2002 raising China from the tenth to the fifth place in the world.

* A detailed map of rice genome was completed.

* Illiteracy among the young and middle-aged had been basically eliminated accounted for 65 percent of Chinese population in 1997. The figure rose to 91 percent in 2002.

* In 2002 the student population in institutions of higher learning was 16 million, 2.3 times the 1997 figure.

* Medical care continue to improve. Life expectancy reaching 71.8 years in 2002.

              Prepared by E.A.Vidyaskera