By Xie Fang
China’s digital economy continued its momentum over the first half of this year with its size accounting for more than one-third of the country’s GDP by the end of that period according to an official report released on Wednesday, the Shanghai Securities Journal reported.
According to the report issued by the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT) affiliated to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), the size of China’s digital economy reached roughly 16 trillion yuan (2.32 trillion U.S. dollars) by the end of this June, which was equivalent to 38.2 percent of the country’s GDP during the same period.
The report shows that China’s digital economy expanded rapidly on both of its two fronts over that period, namely, the industrialization of digital information and the digitalization of industries.
The size of the industrialization of digital information jumped by 14.5 percent year on year over the first half of 2018 to 3.15 trillion yuan which was about 7.5 percent of China’s GDP during the same period of time.
On the other hand, China also expedited the digitalization of its industrial system during the period as its size hitting 12.85 trillion yuan (1.87 trillion U.S. dollars) by the end of June, accounting for 30.7 percent of China’s GDP.
Despite such a robust growth of the digital economy, Lu Chuncong, director of the policy study division of the CAICT, pointed out that its development varies from province to province in China.
According to Lu, the size of the largest provincial-level digital economy in China is 64 times bigger than that of the smallest one.
In addition to the regional inequality, Lu also emphasized that the digitalization of China’s service sector develops faster than that of the industrial and agricultural sectors, indicating that the disparity of digital development among the country’s three sectors is also conspicuous.