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Data trading takes on extra significance

By ZHOU MO | HK EDITION | Updated: 2023-01-06 17:24
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An event titled "Shenzhen Data Exchange Inaugural Ceremony and Achievement Exhibition" is held in Shenzhen, south China's Guangdong Province, Nov 15, 2022. [PHOTO/XINHUA]

A huge volume of cross-boundary data flow and trade between Shenzhen and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region is yet to be unleashed and, with its great potential, it'll drive the growth of various industries, says Wang Teng, deputy general manager of Shenzhen Data Exchange.

"Although we're unable at the moment to precisely assess the market of cross-border data flow and trade between Shenzhen and the SAR, our communication and exchanges with enterprises tell us it's a very large market with unimaginable proportions," he says.

"We'll focus on the major sectors, such as trade, talent and finance amid the different industrial structures between the two cities," Wang told China Daily in an interview.

Shenzhen Data Exchange, which was inaugurated on Nov 15, has so far completed 14 transactions on cross-boundary data trading, worth 11 million yuan ($1.59 million).

The new bourse is working with the authorities in Qianhai - the Shenzhen-Hong Kong cooperation zone in the western part of Shenzhen - to promote the formulation of standards. They'll concentrate on five areas in piloting the system - cross-boundary finance, medical care, talent, trade and transnational enterprises.

"Basically, cross-boundary data trading is still in the experimental stage. From the top-level system-making to the bottom-level technology implementation, there has not been a complete route to follow so far. It is a 'black box'," notes Wang. "This is the main difficulty we need to overcome."

The Chinese mainland is beefing up efforts to promote data trading to propel the development of the digital economy. The mainland data trading market is expanding rapidly, reaching 46.3 billion yuan in 2021, according to Yu Shiyang, director of the department of big data development at the State Information Center.

Over 80 data trading institutions have been set up on the mainland in recent years, with almost 30 of them launched by provincial or higher-level governments, he reveals.

The Global Big Data Exchange, which began operations in Guiyang - the provincial capital of southwestern Guizhou province - in April 2015, is the country's first of its kind.

The mainland's four first-tier cities - Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen - have all built their own data exchanges.

The central government recently released a guideline for building basic systems for data and making better use of data elements. According to the guideline issued by the State Council on Dec 19, efforts will focus on overall planning and the establishment of "regulated and efficient" venues for data trading.

The government will roll out management measures for data trading venues, establish and optimize data trading rules, formulate unified standards for data trading and security, and reduce data transaction costs.

With multiple advantages in its geographical location, favorable policies, infrastructure and an established market, Shenzhen is well placed to carry out cross-boundary data trading, says Wang.

"We'll leverage our respective strengths and coordinate with Hong Kong to enable such data to be used in various fields."

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