BEIJING — China's automotive industry now can use e-commerce to help move business along. The China Automotive Rainbow Net (CARN) launches an e-commerce network with hopes that it will help make the automotive sector more competitive globally.

CARN is designed to enable companies, including manufacturers, suppliers and dealers, to conduct bidding, auctions and business negotiations on the Internet. The site also provides an electronic data interchange service that enables manufacturers to purchase parts and materials, receive orders from overseas, establish a sales management system and supervise branches. Foreign carmakers will be able to search for business opportunities on the site, as well.

CARN officials say the system will emerge as a major force to propel the development of China's young automotive industry. Though the industry lags in development and technologies, it can narrow the gap by keeping pace with foreign automakers in information and e-commerce, says Gu Raotian, chairman of CARN.

The system is linked to e-commerce networks in the U.S., Japan and Europe. The address of the web site is