Following the Germany-led Industry 4.0, China has embarked on envisioning its version of industrial consolidation, dubbed “Made in China 2025” .
China led the world in industrial output in 2013, accounting for 20.8% of the global share with more than 200 products leading in sales. The craze for imported goods such as Japanese toilet seats and rice cookers in recent years has, however, highlighted the urge for the country to enhance the quality of its products.
The Made in China 2025 initiative was put together by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) and the Chinese Academy of Engineering. It focuses on promoting innovation, smart industrial transition, construction, green industry and the integration of industrialization and information technology to create leading industrial giants that help the country upgrade from its current position as the “world’s factory,” according to Premier Li Keqiang at the National People’s Congress on March 5.
An initial 40 billion yuan (US$8 billion) fund has been established to promote emerging industries and ventures, Li was cited in Hong Kong’s Wen Wei Po as saying.
The MIIT has broken the conventional limit of making 5-year plans and extended its blueprint for the initiative until 2025 to ensure coherent policy implementation. The overall industrial consolidation is expected to take three decades and Made in China 2025 are the steps for the first, said MIIT director Miao Yu.
Industry 4.0, or the “fourth industrial revolution,” is a Germany-led initiative aimed to facilitate the vision of the Smart Factory based on the technological concepts of cyber-physical systems, the Internet of Things and the Internet of Services.
Miao said the concept behind Germany’s Industry 4.0 and Made in China 2025 is similar as both seek to computerize the manufacturing industry and are running on similar timelines. The two countries, however, have started from different levels in terms of industrial development. While Germany is heading towards Industrial 4.0, China still has some gaps to fill “between 2.0 to 3.0.” China must consider its conditions and select a better fit for its road of development, said Miao.