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Competence Centre on Foresight

We foster a strategic, future-oriented and anticipatory culture in the EU policymaking process.

Page | Last updated: 17 Feb 2020

China's R&D strategy

China's R&D

Digital power

  • China's overall digitalization is medium in the global comparison, but it is global leader in some key industries and with its R&D and industrial strategy it strives for global leadership in further area.
  • China plans to be world leader in AI by 2030. China has the top 3rd and 4th most powerful supercomputers.
  • China’s digital economy becomes a leading global force. China has:
    • 731 million Internet users, more than the EU and the USA combined
    • 44% of worldwide M2M (machine-to-machine) sim card subscriptions (three times the share of the United States)
    • the world’s largest e-commerce market - accounting for over 40% of the global e-commerce transactions' value (from less than 1% about a decade ago)
    • China accounts for 32% of global ICT goods exports
    • the most active digital-investment and start-up ecosystems in the world, mainly active in big data, AI, and fintech
    •  mobile payments' value 11 times that of the USA (some 68% of Chinese Internet users are making mobile digital payments, compared with only around 15% in the USA)
    • the big digital power BAT (Baidu, Alibaba, and Tencent) provided 42% of all venture-capital investment in China in 2016 (compared to 5% by Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Netflix in USA) and - other digital innovators such as Xiaomi, NetEase and Ping An are also building their own ecosystems.
    • | Related Megatrends: TechnologySecurityGovernance
    • the Chinese 5G network equipment industry, got into a global trade war with the US blocking Huawei to supply its networks; the US is worried about cyber security vulnerabilities of the critical communication infrastructure that is crucial for industry 4.0 applications. Chinese Huawei is currently seen as a follower with Swedish Ericsson and South Korean Samsung as leaders in the in the 5G infrastructure provider market.