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China tech

China's alternative to GPS starts global service ahead of schedule

Beijing pushes ahead on 'Made in China 2025' with crucial technology

A model of the BeiDou Satellite Navigation System is on display at the China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition in Zhuhai, Guangdong province in November.   © Kyodo

BEIJING -- China touted the completion of its homegrown global positioning system and the beginning of worldwide service on Thursday, ushering in a crucial technology for Beijing's "Made in China 2025" strategy to promote cutting-edge fields like automated driving and online services.

The BeiDou Navigation Satellite System, or BDS, originally was slated to begin worldwide service in 2020 but the launch was pushed forward. The system lays the foundation for China to join the U.S. and Russia as a major space power.

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