Chinese government officials have announced that the country will intensify its efforts to build basic data systems, enhance digital infrastructure construction, and accelerate the digital transformation of businesses. At a news conference for the sixth Digital China Summit, Sun Wei, deputy director of the Department of Innovation and High-Tech Development at the National Development and Reform Commission, outlined China’s strategy. The country will work to develop a data elements market system, speed up large-scale commercial applications of 5G technology, cultivate digital industrial clusters with global competitiveness, and deepen international cooperation in the digital economy sector. The summit, to be held in Fuzhou from April 27-28, will address topics including data resources, artificial intelligence, and digital government, among others.
Deputy head of the Cyberspace Administration of China, Cao Shumin, noted that China has over 2.31 million 5G base stations and the capability to connect over 500 million households with a gigabit optical network. He highlighted the importance of the digital economy as a key driver of economic growth, with the electronic information manufacturing sector logging stable growth in 2022 and operating revenue amounting to $2.2 trillion.
According to a white paper by the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology, the scale of China’s digital economy reached 45.5 trillion yuan in 2021, ranking second in the world, and accounting for nearly 40% of the country’s GDP. In February, the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the State Council announced a plan to build digital infrastructure and data resource systems. By 2025, the plan aims to achieve effective interconnectivity in digital infrastructure, significantly improve the digital economy, and make major breakthroughs in digital technology innovation.
Guo Ningning, vice-governor of Fujian province, noted that digital technologies are increasingly being used across various industries in the region, and the added value of Fujian’s digital economy surpassed 2.6 trillion yuan in 2022, accounting for nearly 50% of its GDP. China unveiled 20 key measures in December to build basic systems for data and put data resources to better use, involving the establishment of data property rights, circulation and trading, revenue distribution, and security governance systems.