Jonathan E. Hillman, the Director of the Reconnecting Asia Project, has said that United States policymakers should start recognizing that cloud computing must be an industry that the country needs to stay on top of.
This is Hillman’s advice to the U.S. as he said that China’s next quest is to improve their cloud computing to dominate the information supply chain, from handheld devices to data servers.
Cloud computing is important and critical because this is where everything comes together. It powers e-mails, databases, and storage. It also touches on artificial intelligence and big data applications that require massive computing power.
China has been thriving in this industry since the 2020 pandemic began. Accordingly, Huawei more than doubled its share in the global market for Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). Also, it partnered with federal data centers and IT providers in Mexico and Brazil and has invested in Chile and Argentina. Huawei regional president Xiao Fei said that the aim behind the partnerships and investments abroad is “to form a giant triangle of improved coverage and better connectivity in Latin America.”
Aside from Huawei, Alibaba Cloud, a Chinese multinational technology company specializing in e-commerce, retail, internet, and technology, recently unveiled a USD 1 billion investment in Asia. The investment promises to train 100,000 developers and invest in 100,000 startups in the next three years. Alibaba will likewise partner with foreign universities to design courses regarding artificial intelligence.
IaaS is something that modern societies increasingly depend on, but not all countries are moving to take advantage of it. That is why Hillman is pushing U.S. officials to understand the industry more and develop it for their strength in the global economy.
This is not the first time that China expressed its interest in cloud computing. In 2014, Chinese President Xi Jinping said, “The flow of information guides the flow of technology, capital, and talent. The amount of information controlled has become an important indicator of a nation’s soft power and competitiveness.”
To reiterate, Hillman said that the United States should not just focus on areas where they have fallen behind. They need to stay on top of things that they are already ahead of against China.