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China eyes digital technologies to assist epidemic control

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-02-20 10:31
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A delivery robot delivers lunch in Changsha, Central China's Hunan province, Feb 14, 2020. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING -- Chinese regulators on Wednesday called for full use of information technologies including big data and artificial intelligence to assist containing the novel coronavirus epidemic and help businesses resume work.

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) said in a notice that it would support the application of the Internet, big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence in areas such as epidemic monitoring, virus sources tracing, epidemic prevention and treatment.

It also seeks to utilize Internet platforms for more efficient production, allocation and management of medical supplies.

More efforts should be made to coordinate cooperation between technology companies and medical research institutions to quicken virus diagnosis, drug and vaccine development, according to the notice.

Meanwhile, the ministry pledged to support work resumption of businesses, including Internet transportation, logistics and express deliveries, to ensure the supply of production materials and daily necessities.

It will push the development of online lendings based on business credit data and promote financing channels such as intellectual property mortgages to ensure the funding demands of the companies.

Since the outbreak of the epidemic, Chinese Internet and logistics companies have been leveraging their strong technology and supply chain management capabilities, as well as their large user bases, to facilitate the containment of the virus.

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