To jointly explore the future of the digital economy

By He Yong, People’s Daily

The Global Digital Economy Conference 2023 was recently held at the China National Convention Center in Beijing. 

Beijing and 18 partner cities, including Abu Dhabi, jointly released the global digital economy partnership city cooperation initiative at the event.

The initiative covers six aspects such as promoting exchange and cooperation among cities around the world, sharing and opening up mutually beneficial market environments, jointly building an innovative ecology for digital technology, 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 global cities and within multi-bilateral frameworks.

The annual event of the Global Digital Economy Conference was first held in 2021. Themed “Data Drives Development, Intelligence Leads the Future,” the Global Digital Economy Conference 2023 aimed to vitalize global innovation in digital technologies, promote the digital transformation of industries, and build an essential platform for international exchange and cooperation on the digital economy.

China is seeing a constantly reinforced foundation of the digital economy. As of the end of May, the country had built over 2.84 million 5G base stations, with the number of cellular Internet of Things end-users exceeding 2.05 billion. China is the first major economy in the world that sees more connected things than people.

According to statistics released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the digital and real economies are accelerating their integration in China. By the end of May, the numerical control rate of critical processes in key industrial enterprises reached 59.4 percent, and over 1,700 industry-leading digital and intelligent workshops and factories had been built across the country. Besides, China is home to more than 240 industrial internet platforms influential to their respective regions and industries, which connect over 89 million units of industrial equipment. New applications, scenarios, and business models keep emerging.

The core sectors of the digital economy are expanding, and the digital industry remains a significant force driving the growth of the digital economy.

In the first five months of this year, the revenue of China’s software industry exceeded 4.3 trillion yuan ($594 billion), up 13.3 percent year on year. The payment of the information technology and services sector stood at 2.84 trillion yuan. In particular, cloud computing and extensive data services reached 436.6 billion yuan. This has injected vitality into technological innovation and economic and social development.

Beijing has vigorously advanced the construction of a benchmark city for the global digital economy in recent years. The added value of Beijing’s digital economy increased from 871.94 billion yuan in 2015 to 1.7 trillion yuan in 2022, and its share of GDP rose from 35.2 percent to 41.6 percent. The city is home to over 8,000 enterprises above the designated size engaged in the core sectors of the digital economy.

As a window showcasing the achievements in the construction of a benchmark city for the global digital economy, the Global Digital Economy Conference has grown into an international, high-end, and professional cooperation platform for building a paradigm of the global digital economy that features benefits all, balance, coordination, inclusiveness, win-win cooperation, and shared prosperity.

The conference will earnestly implement the global digital economy partnership city cooperation initiative, keep providing opportunities for relevant parties around the world, jointly contribute to and share the achievements of the digital economy, and explore the future of the digital economy, to inject new impetus into the global economic development.

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