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New Trends in the Integrated Development of the Digital and Real Economies

By Qiu Ping Source: Updated: 2024-02-23

At present, a new round of scientific and technological revolution and industrial transformation is gaining pace, and profound adjustments are taking place in the structure and layout of global industry. As a result, we are seeing many new features and trends emerging in the integrated development of the digital and real economies.

Digital technology has entered a period of explosive innovation

Digital technology has supercharged systemic innovation and transformations driven by intelligent technology, sparking whole-of-chain breakthroughs in basic theory, underlying architectures, systems design, and other respects. This has resulted in the emergence of generational advances at an accelerated pace.

Emerging technologies like 5G, cloud computing, big data, the Industrial Internet, AI, and blockchain technology have ramped up the speed of technological cross-fertilization and iterative innovation. Networks have evolved from connecting all people and things to ubiquitous connectivity, nurturing a host of new forms and models of business that have injected fresh momentum into economic and social development.

Breakthroughs in the application of general AI, quantum information, and other disruptive frontier technologies are emerging at a much faster rate, leading to the sustained acceleration of technological integration and innovation underpinned by data, computing power, and algorithms.

All this has greatly boosted the dynamism for integrated development of the digital and real economies.

Digital technology is being fully integrated into countless industries

Digital technology is penetrating various industries and fields much faster than before, and the focus of integration is shifting from the field of consumer services to production and manufacturing, with the role of digital technology evolving from an auxiliary tool to a major engine of innovation and development. This is promoting ubiquitous connectivity of various types of resources and production factors, the elastic supply of services, and the efficient distribution of platforms, while also spurring profound changes in development modes, industry models, and forms of enterprise.

According to relevant data, digitalization has raised productivity levels in demonstration factories for intelligent manufacturing by an average of 32%, increased the comprehensive utilization rate of resources by an average of 22%, shortened the product R&D cycle by an average of 28%, reduced operating costs by an average of 19%, and lowered the product defect rate by an average of 24%.

Data’s value as a key production factor has become increasingly evident

While being rapidly integrated into all links of production, distribution, circulation, and consumption, data have accelerated the connectivity between online and offline activities, work and life, and domestic and international markets. They have made supply more targeted, stimulated emerging demand, reshaped economic models, and amplified the multiplier effects on improving production efficiency. As the defining production factor of our age, data have spawned new opportunities for economic development.

Thanks to data’s explosive growth, aggregation, and sharing, as well as rapid availability, circulation, and application, all business entities are focusing intently on data-driven development and striving to improve their ability to manage, develop, and use data so as to unlock their enormous value.

International competition is heating up in key fields for integration

The world's major economies have moved in succession to improve their strategic plans, boosting policy support in areas of integration such as intelligent manufacturing, the Industrial Internet, and digital supply chains. In addition, countries are vying for the right to determine technical standards and economic and trade rules in the digital sphere.

The European Union has introduced legislation such as the Data Governance Act and the Digital Markets Act, leveraging privacy and data protection, antitrust, and digital taxation as a means to safeguard digital sovereignty.