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China’s New Proposal on Development of New Infrastructure based on 5G Will Open a Great Window of Opportunity for China-ASEAN Digital Economy Cooperation

According to Aladdin D. Rillo, Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN , global economic recovery post-pandemic will to a considerable extent depend on China that managed to avoid recession as it grew by 3.2% in Q2. Moreover, China’s new proposal on Development of #NewInfrastructure based on 5G will open a great window of opportunity for China-ASEAN digital economy cooperation and benefit both sides .

Aladdin D. Rillo said, the sudden stop of economic activities as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular, has led supply and demand to decline significantly, both within China and globally. China, is the second largest economy in the world, and the largest trading partner of ASEAN. ASEAN is also a major supplier of raw commodities and intermediate inputs to China for further processing and re-exporting to many other countries. Accordingly, if China’s economic growth dwindles, the global economy, including that of ASEAN, may also weaken.

However, global economic recovery post-pandemic will to a considerable extent depend in part on how fast China’s economy recovers. “There are some positive signs. China managed to avoid recession as it grew by 3.2% in the second quarter, after shrinking by 6.8% in the first quarter”, DSG noted. Its onward recovery, however, may be affected by how others are coping given China’s role as a major supplier to the global value chains.

Meanwhile, Aladdin D. Rillo noted that ASEAN believes that powerful, coherent, and secured 5G infrastructure is a necessity for ASEAN economies to embrace full potential of innovative and digital technologies in the era of the 4IR. It also supports the operationalisation of ASEAN’s on-going smart cities projects and many other digital initiatives that rely on the use of IOT, big data analytics, and AI technologies. ASEAN is currently working toward the establishment of guidelines for 5G ecosystem development in consultation with various stakeholders, including the public sector, academia, and the private sector.

The technical support of ASEAN Dialogue Partners, including China, through active collaborations, would effectively improve ASEAN’s capability to ensure the success of this effort. In this connection, the launch of the Year of ASEAN-China Digital Economy Cooperation by ASEAN and China in 2020 opens a great window of opportunity for both sides to enhance mutual cooperation in digital technology areas and to explore initiatives, including those in 5G infrastructure development with a view to promoting the digital economy in the region.

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