BOSTON – General Electric’s health care unit, the world’s biggest maker of medical imaging machines, said Monday it will move the headquarters for its more than 100-year-old X-ray business to China to tap emerging market growth.

“A handful” of top managers will move to Beijing and there won’t be any job cuts, Anne LeGrand, vice president and general manager of X-ray for GE Healthcare, said in an interview.

The headquarters will move from Waukesha, Wis., amid a broader parent-company plan to invest about $2 billion across China, including opening six “customer innovation” and development centers.

The move follows the introduction earlier this year of GE Healthcare’s “Spring Wind” initiative to develop and distribute medical products and services in China, GE said in a statement.

More than 20 percent of the X-ray unit’s new products will be developed in China, LeGrand said.

“We anticipate it’s going to be a growing modality,” she said, adding her division should have “double-digit” growth rates as the country converts from film and analog to digital X-ray technology.

“When you look at a market like China, it’s primarily analog. So we feel this will also bring digital technology at an appropriate price point,” LeGrand said.

GE Healthcare, also the world’s biggest maker of MRI and CT scanners, got about $1.1 billion of its $16.9 billion in sales from China last year. Healthcare device markets are forecast to more than double this year, according to researcher Epsicom.

The X-ray business, whose financial results aren’t reported separately by GE, will hire 65 new engineers and support staff at a new Chengdu facility, the company said in the statement. GE has hired “a large number” of engineers who are in training, LeGrand said. GE, based in Fairfield, Conn., also has a global research center in Shanghai.

“Over the next five years, China will be GE Healthcare’s most important growth market,” Rachel Duan, the China unit’s president and chief executive officer, told reporters in Beijing.

The company wants to keep its leading position in providing medical devices targeted at higher-end Chinese customers, and also break into China’s growing market for primary health care, a key goal of the Chinese government’s health care reform plans.

To do this, GE Healthcare plans to boost China-based research, enabling it to introduce at least 20 products for the local market in the next three years, Duan said.