The government has gradually increased the proportion of GDP allocated to environmental protection from 0.72 percent in 1989 to 1.33 percent in 2003. Between 1998 and 2002, 580 billion yuan was invested in environmental protection and ecological construction across China, 1.8 times the total investment in this area for the 48 years between 1950 and 1997. In 2003, 136.34 billion yuan was invested in treatment of environmental pollution, 23.2 percent more than in 2002. Of the total investment, 78.53 billion yuan was used in construction of environmental infrastructure in urban areas, 18.84 billion yuan in treatment of sources of industrial pollution, and 38.97 billion yuan in environmental protection in new construction projects.
So far this century, China's environmental protection industry has grown at an average annual rate of 17 percent, far out-stripping the general economy. In 2002, the output value of China's environmental protection industry reached 220 billion yuan, compared to 4 billion yuan in 1992. At present, China's environmental protection enterprises are located mainly in more developed areas along the coast and rivers of eastern China, 6 percent being large enterprises with fixed assets worth more than 50 million yuan. Some authorities predict that this industry will maintain its fast momentum.