By Ping Lun, People’s Daily
Large batches of new stunning technologies and applications have been launched this year on a series of internet industry forums and conferences, from the China International Big Data Industry Expo 2021 to the Smart China Expo 2021 and from the ZGC Forum to the World Internet Conference.
For instance, robots are employed today for offering services, disinfection, and security; the Beidou Navigation Satellite System is widely applied; various forms of knowledge are being imparted to machines and human beings by knowledge computing platforms.
They mirror the robust development of China’s digital economy, as well as the country’s efforts to promote high-quality development and create a better life.
According to a 2021 report issued by the Chinese Academy of Cyberspace Studies, China’s digital economy hit 39.2 trillion yuan ($6.14 trillion) last year, up 9.7 percent yearly. The digital economy has become an important propeller for stable economic growth, the report said. As of the end of June this year, the numerical control rate of key processes in Chinese enterprises reached 53.7 percent, and the penetration rate of digital R&D and design tools came in at 73.7 percent. Besides, over half of the market demand for intelligent equipment has been satisfied, and new applications, including digital greenhouses, agricultural picking robots, remote working, smart logistics, and unmanned ports, are constantly emerging. The development of the internet has entered a new stage as the industry is seeping into every production sector.
Such progress is driven by the robust construction of information infrastructure and the continuous advancement made in innovation capability. So far, China has built the world’s largest optic fiber network and mobile internet. 5G base stations are set up in all prefecture-level cities, urban areas in over 95 percent of the country’s counties, as well as 35 percent of townships. Communication is no longer a problem troubling the country’s rural areas, as more than 99 percent of the country’s administrative villages have been connected to optic fiber networks and the 4G mobile internet. It has laid a solid foundation for China’s high-quality economic development.
Substantial progress has been made in the development of basic and general technologies. Besides, 5G, quantum computing, high-end chips, high-performance computers, network structure, basic operating system, satellite internet applications, industrial internet, smart manufacturing, and other sectors have all made significant breakthroughs. They are an essential force driving digital transformation.
The world today is fast-evolving, with many significant changes unseen in a century. The COVID-19 pandemic has produced a far-reaching impact, and the world economic recovery faces stern challenges. In the meantime, a new round of technological revolution and industrial transformation is unfolding, driving the rapid development of digital technologies. All countries take economic digitalization as a vital impetus when they pursue innovative development and have made far-sighted deployment in frontier technology development, data sharing, privacy protection, and talent cultivation.
The Outline of the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021–2025) for National Economic and Social Development and the Long-Range Objectives Through the Year 2035 requires China to create new strengths for the digital economy. Taking full advantage of the massive data and rich application scenarios, local governments across the country have rolled out relevant implementation schemes and action plans to promote in-depth integration between digital technology and the real economy, assist the upgrading of traditional industries, and build new industries, businesses, and modes.