Source: Xinhua      BEIJING, May 14 

From central government's intensive deployment to local authorities' active response, from the surging investment of enterprises to the capital market enthusiasm, from the beginning of 2020, the new infrastructure has been in full swing.

New infrastructure, guided by new development concepts, driven by technological innovation, based on information networks, facing the needs of high-quality development, it provides an infrastructure system that combines services such as digital transformation, intelligent upgrades, and integrated innovation. Covering 5G, cloud computing, data centers and many other new concepts, it will boost industrial upgrading, entrepreneurship and employment, and add surging new momentum to China's economy.

New infrastructure promotes industries with digital intelligence

New infrastructure is becoming a hot word since the beginning of the year, as it supports the development of new industries.

In March 2020, the added value of the national high-tech industry increased 8.9 percent, a significant increase of more than 20 percentage points compared that figure in January and February. In the first quarter, the output value of new generation of information technology increased 15.3 percent in Shanghai, and the output of smartphones, carbon fiber and its composite materials, and industrial robots increased 33.7 percent, 25.5 percent and 8.9 percent, respectively.

New infrastructure is becoming a new investment and development direction, said Zhang Yong, chairman and CEO of Alibaba Group, adding that digitization is the path for future social governance.

For many years, industry giants have been actively investing in new infrastructure production and construction.

Three major telecommunication operators namely China Mobile, China Unicom and China Telecom are constructing 5G base stations; Huawei and Tencent are investing heavily in the data center hardware and software development; internet companies such as Alibaba, Baidu and are developing big data platforms.

Experts believe that the new infrastructure can accelerate the rapid upgrade of traditional enterprises.

In Baoshan, Shanghai, with the help of the COSMOPlat, an industrial internet platform, to transform the production process, a packaging material manufacturing company has achieved a leap in production.

"In the past when customers placed orders, we needed to generate production plans, material preparation orders, etc., which were prone to make errors and mistakes,"  said Cao Xiaoting, general manager of the packaging company. After the transformation of the industrial internet, the company plans to double its annual output in three years.

New infrastructure brings innovation

According to Wu Hao, director with the Department of High-Tech Industry, the National Development and Reform Commission, new infrastructure mainly includes three aspects namely information infrastructure, integrated infrastructure and innovation infrastructure.

Accelerating the construction of new infrastructure is an important means of expanding effective investment, fueling the development of the new economy, and promoting the modernization of governance capabilities.

As the cornerstone of data, computing, and network, the data center is considered as the base of the new infrastructure. Zhang Jianming, deputy director of Shanghai Municipal Commission of Economy and Informatization, said that Shanghai has built 120,000 rack data centers and will add another 60,000 racks with the direct investment of 12 billion yuan before the first quarter of 2021, driving a total investment of over 38 billion yuan.

According to Liu Duo, president of the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT), commercial use of 5G will promote the value of mobile data, information service consumption, and terminal consumption to 8 trillion yuan in the next five year. By 2025, it will directly create more than 3 million jobs, Liu added.

Moreover, computing capacity brought by the new infrastructure will bring the city's development to a new era, pointed out by Wang Jian, academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering.

Empower new infrastructure with the best environment

Local governments have responded quickly. Twenty-five provincial-level regions have put new infrastructure projects in their government work reports, with 21 intending to advance 5G network construction.

Recently, Jiangsu formulated policies on accelerating the construction of digital new infrastructure, expanding information consumption and supporting the development of 5G networks; Fujian announced key digital economy projects in 2020, including 52 digital new infrastructure projects with a total investment of 72.9 billion yuan; Shanghai issued an action plan on new infrastructure construction, with the total investment of major projects reaching 270 billion yuan in three years; 537 major projects in Zhejiang with a total investment of 886.4 billion yuan have started construction, with high-tech and industrial engineering projects accounting for 60 percent.

The government will provide more support in constructing 5G network, industrial internet and data centers, said Chen Zhaoxiong, vice minister of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology.

China is the most important part of the global layout and global manufacturing, the concept of new infrastructure comes just at the right time, said a report released by UBS. In the future, high-value-added areas such as the technology industry, will be on China's main stage.