China leads acceleration in global digital race

Updated: Jul 14, 2023 China Daily Print
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BEIJING — China has seen a significant increase in the size of its digital economy over the past seven years, amid an accelerated development of the global digital economy.

According to a research report released on July 5 at the main forum of the Global Digital Economy Conference 2023 in Beijing, the scale of China's digital economy increased by $4.1 trillion from 2016 to 2022, with a compound annual growth rate of 14.2 percent.

The scale of China's digital economy grew to 50.2 trillion yuan ($6.96 trillion) in 2022.

The share of the digital economy in the country's GDP rose to 41.5 percent, making it an important engine for stable growth and transformation.

Currently, countries around the world are speeding up the development of key areas of the digital economy, and actively seizing development opportunities in fields such as digital technologies and industries, industrial digitalization and data elements.

For example, by March 2023, 256 network operators in 95 countries and regions had commercialized 5G technology, with 1.15 billion 5G users worldwide and a 30.6 percent population coverage rate of 5G network, an increase of 5.5 percent year-on-year.

In 2022, revenue of the global artificial intelligence market climbed to $450 billion, up 17.3 percent year-on-year. The number of global digital economy unicorn enterprises reached 1,032, accounting for 74.14 percent of global unicorn enterprises, with an estimated value of 24.95 trillion yuan, according to the report.

Mei Hong, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, said that China's digital transformation is advancing from the field of consumption and services to the manufacturing sector in the real economy.

Data shows that in 2022, the operating income of China's electronic information manufacturing industry was 15.4 trillion yuan, while the software business made 10.8 trillion yuan and the big data industry made 1.57 trillion yuan, laying a solid industrial and technological foundation for the integrated development of informatization and industrialization.

Ahmed Abdel Hafez, chairman of the executive bureau of the Egyptian supreme cybersecurity council, said that China's achievements in the development of the digital economy have attracted worldwide attention.

The nation's opening-up has created development opportunities for other countries, and given them the chance to share the development dividends of China's big market.

Beijing and 18 partner cities, including Abu Dhabi, London, Macao, San Francisco, Vienna, Vientiane and Zaragoza, released the global digital economy partnership city cooperation initiative at the opening ceremony of the conference on July 4.

The initiative covers aspects such as accelerating the digital transformation process of cities, green development through digital empowerment, and supporting global digital inclusive cooperation. It aims to build an open innovation network for the digital economy between foreign cities and within multi-bilateral frameworks.


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