Chinese government decides to invest in Linux

Chinese government decides to invest in Linux

According to Reuters, “The Chinese government plans to throw its financial weight behind Linux-based computer systems that could rival Microsoft Corp.’s Windows in one of the world’s fastest-growing technology markets, an official said on Wednesday.

China would build a domestic software industry around Linux — a cheaper software standard that can copied and modified freely — said Gou Zhongwen, a vice minister at the powerful Ministry of Information Industry.

“Linux is an opportunity for us to make a breakthrough in developing software,” he was quoted as saying on the ministry Web site “But the market cannot be developed on a large scale without government support.”

Gou did not give details on the amount of planned government investment in Linux.

China’s information technology market is growing at 20 percent a year, with software sales expected to reach $30.5 billion in 2005, according to research house International Data Corp.”