Beijing -- Sales of mobile telephones in China increased by 40 percent year-on-year to 120 million units in 2006.
According to Xie Linzhen, deputy chief of the China Mobile Communications Association, China has become one of the world's largest handset markets, adding that sales will likely to surge to 150 million units this year.
In 2006, China produced a total of 450 million mobile phones, of which 350 million were exported.
According to the ministry of information, foreign mobile phone giants including Nokia and Motorala hold the lion's share of the market. Local mobile phonemakers sold only 50 million units on both the domestic and overseas markets.
Xie said the rapid increase in mobile telephone sales was a result of a booming world economy, which allows people to upgrade to a newer mobile phone more often.
Last year the number of mobile users in China reached 461 million, up by 68 million from 2005.