Skip to main content

China five-year plan aims for global AI and quantum supremacy

China US flags cropped
(Image credit: Medium)

Chinese officials have shared a draft economic blueprint that looks to boost research and development spending, particularly on areas pertaining to “national security and overall development.” 

The move, announced at the Chinese government's annual legislative meeting, is the result of the tech-centred tensions between China and the US. The seven strategic areas outlined in the Chinese draft include Artificial Intelligence (AI), quantum computing, integrated circuits, genetic and biotechnology research, neuroscience and aerospace.

The new blueprint aims to increase spending by more than 7% over the next five years. 

Will also bolster R&D

The move comes in the backdrop of the trade restrictions imposed on Chinese companies by the previous Trump administration, most notably on communication technology giant Huawei, which reportedly stifled the company from acquiring critical components.

“Leading in AI and computing enables China to reap huge benefits in hybrid warfare and intelligence gathering,” said Alex Capri, a senior fellow at the National University of Singapore’s business school told the Wall Street Journal.

As per the WSJ report, the blueprint is in line with the Chinese leadership’s plans to break away from the dependence on US suppliers.

The move will also help China in another aspect where it currently lags behind the US, namely research and development. 

However, the tide may already have started to turn, as China recently overtook the U.S. in terms of the number of journal citations on AI, reports the WSJ citing a Stanford University report that came out earlier this month.

To further extend this effort, the new blueprint also talks about plans to create national laboratories and bolster academic programs to support the previously highlighted technologies. 

Via: Wall Street Journal