China’s digital economy achievements impress foreign youth

Guiyang: The ongoing China International Big Data Industry Expo 2023, held in southwest China’s Guizhou Province, has attracted attendees from home and abroad to discuss cutting-edge technological achievements in the big data industry and share their experience on promoting the digital economy.

Among the foreign attendees was Robert Adolf, a social media vlogger from Germany who participated in the expo for the first time. “I experienced a lot of high-tech that I had never heard of before, which expanded my horizons,” he said. “New technologies such as XR (Extended Reality) and self-driving cars allow me to feel the convenience that technology has brought to people.”

Adolf, 26, came to work in China in 2017. He was fascinated by Chinese culture, especially the colorful ethnic cultures in Guizhou.

“I often go to ethnic minority areas in Guizhou to shoot short videos, and I was very surprised to see the modern Guizhou this time. I was particularly impressed by XR, as I was immersed in different virtual backgrounds and could interact with virtual objects directly on the TV.”

Often dubbed China’s big data hub, the mountainous province of Guizhou is China’s first national big data comprehensive pilot zone. It has been promoting the big data industry as a backbone of its high-quality social and economic development.

In 2022, Guizhou accelerated the development of the big data industry, with the added value of the electronic information manufacturing industry within the province rising by more than 60 percent.

Wisdom Agbottah, a young software engineer from Ghana’s national information technology agency, is another new participant at the expo, which has been held in Guiyang since 2015.

Prior to the expo, Agbottah visited several big data companies and factories, as well as a smart agriculture base, in China. He came mainly for a software and hardware network seminar during the three-day event.

“We visited a company that deals with big data in agriculture. We also visited greenhouses and learned how they use their sensors and patent technology to gather results and data from the soil, and how they help the plants to grow.”

“We also visited automobile manufacturing plants that use a lot of machines and robots to streamline the manufacturing of cars,” he added. “It’s been really eye-opening.”

The theme of this year’s expo is “Integrating Digital and Real Economies, Unlocking the Future with Computing Power.” Besides sub-forums, the event also hosts industry competitions and an offline exhibition with six pavilions covering an area of 60,000 square meters.

Many young people from abroad have been drawn to China to participate in the event and experienced the latest achievements of China’s digital economy for themselves.

Agbottah said he was amazed by how big data and its application in building smart cities are taking shape in China.

This year’s edition of the event is not only a big data gala showcasing China’s new progress in the industry, but also an important cooperation, communication and exchange platform for all parties.

Having viewed the event venue and the ongoing exhibition, Agbottah expects more cooperation projects between his country and China in the future.

“There is a lot of cooperation between China and Ghana,” he said. “China’s automatic vehicles are leading-edge tech and are not yet in my country, but hopefully soon we will get there.”