Education, Science and Technology, Cultural and Health Undertakings
China's scientific and educational undertakings occupy a position a little above the middling among the developing countries. At present, the contribution rate of science and technology to economy in developed countries exceeds 60 percent while it is only around 30 percent in China. With regard to education, China has a fairly high level of primary and secondary school education but a relatively backward higher education as shown by statistics. According to a statistic result published by the UNESCO, the literacy rate of adult Chinese citizens was 73 percent in 1992, above the average global level.
China's cultural undertaking occupies a middle position among the developing countries. In 1996, the number of books per million people in China came to 93, lower than the average global level (160) but higher than that of the developing countries (55). About 49.18 million copies of daily newspapers were published each day and every thousand people had 41 copies on the average, close to the average level of developing countries (44) and lower than that of the world (96).
From 1978 to 1997, nearly 100,000 reservoirs of different purposes were constructed with a total water storage of 500 billion cubic meters. 5608 irrigated areas were added and the size of irrigated land came to 22.6 million hectares. New investment in capital construction resulted in an increase of coal-mining capacity by 380 million tons, oil-drilling capacity by 240 million tons, steel-making capacity by 18.84 million tons and power-generating capacity by 159 million kilowatts. At the same time, 1,226,000 kilometers of highway were constructed and the loading capacity of newly constructed (or extended) ports amounted to 460 million tons. From 1980 to 1997, main-track railway newly laid throughout the country increased by 17,000 kilometers.