European Commission and China hold second high-level digital dialogue
Topics covered in the dialogue included platforms and data regulation, AI research and innovation, cross-border flows of industrial data, and the safety of online products.
The European Commission held a High-level Digital Dialogue with China in Beijing, focusing on platform and data regulation, AI research and innovation, cross-border flows of industrial data, and the safety of online products.
The dialogue, co-chaired by Vice-President for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová and Vice-Premier of China Zhang Guoqing, aimed to facilitate communication between the EU and China on digital strategy and technological development.
The dialogue, launched in 2020 following the EU-China summit, emphasized the importance of technological development alongside data protection and fundamental rights. The Commission provided updates on the Digital Services Act (DSA), Digital Markets Act (DMA), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Act, while China shared its policies and practices. The Commission stressed the need for interoperable Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) standards and expressed concerns about EU companies facing difficulties accessing their industrial data in China.
The EU’s Economic Security Strategy identified critical technologies to protect innovation. At the same time, discussions during the Digital Dialogue focused on the de-risking approach, which aims to mitigate risks to supply chains, critical infrastructure, and technology security.
Experts have differing opinions on the potential outcomes of the dialogue. Dr Iryna Bogdanova sees it as an example of the EU’s pursuit of open strategic autonomy, seeking self-reliance while cooperating with international partners. However, regulatory convergence is challenging due to geopolitical tensions and strategic competition. Jürgen Matthes highlighted the difficulties of cooperation, particularly China’s data and cybersecurity regulations affecting European industries.
The Chinese mission emphasized China’s commitment to promoting high-level openness in the digital field and welcoming enterprises from all countries, including European ones.
Why does it matter?
The High-level Digital Dialogue addressed aspects of digital strategy and technological development. While the EU aims for self-reliance and resilience, cooperation with international partners remains essential. Regulatory convergence is challenging due to differences in data regulation approaches and geopolitical tensions.