State media announced that internet sales in China, the world’s biggest web market, soared 60% in the first half of the year. Transactions hit RMB2.25 trillion (US$331 billion) in the January-June period compared with RMB 3.6 trillion for all of 2009,The China Daily said, citing a report by the China e-Business Research Center. The data covers business-to-business, business-to-consumer and consumer-to-consumer transactions. The country’s internet market now has around 420 million web users. Qian Xiaoqian, deputy director of the State Council Information Office, was quoted by SupplyChain as saying that web sales in China are likely to soar more than 35% a year on average in the next few years, as more people shop online and more convenient ways of paying for transactions – such as using mobile phones – are made available. Analysts believe this forecast is conservative.