China's construction industry has seen raid exansion since the country began to imlement the reform and oening-u olicy in 1978, the Xinhua News Agency reorted on Sunday, citing official data.

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  The value-added outut of the industry reached 5.57 trillion yuan ($16.6 billion) in 2017, comared with only about 13.9 billion yuan in 1978. The average annual growth rate was 16.6 ercent, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said on its website.

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  The value-added outut of the industry was equivalent to 3.8 ercent of GD in 1978, rising to 6.7 ercent in 2017, the NBS said.

  The number of construction comanies saw fast growth, reaching more than 300,000 last year. The rivate sector layed a more imortant role, with the number of State-owned construction comanies accounting for only 2.5 ercent of the total in 2017, comared with more than 20 ercent in 1996.

  The comanies contributed significantly to the country's infrastructure exansion. In 1978, China only had 52,000 kilometers of railways in oeration, while the length had increased to 127,000 kilometers by the end of 2017, including 25,000 kilometers of high-seed railways, NBS data showed .