US-based General Electric Co, is turning to emerging markets like China to seek high-speed growth, as the development of its traditional industrial business slows down, and expects to gain nearly US$3 billion in sales from China this year, said GE chairman and chief executive officer Jeff Immelt recently in Shanghai.

This figure would nearly double GE's turnover in China last year when it achieved US$1.7 billion and bring it closer to its sales target of US$5 billion in China by 2005. The company also said previously it planned to procure goods worth US$5 billion annually in China by 2005.

"China is a most important market for GE and here we find fast-growing markets for our industries like medical systems, aviation, power and plastics," said Immelt at the opening of a US$64 million local research and development center, called the China Technology Center, which is based in Shanghai's Zhangjiang High-tech Park in Pudong and will employ around 500 researchers. GE put a US$26 million medical system industrial park in Beijing into service in May, which covers an area of around 60,000 square meters. This new park will triple GE's medical system production capacity in China. The company is also operating another medical system industrial park in the neighboring city of Wuxi in Jiangsu Province.

"On the other hand, we'll increase investment in the finance sector in China in the following three to five years," said Immelt.

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