China aims for at least 50 sets of AI standards by 2026, from chips to applications and security

China aims for at least 50 sets of AI standards by 2026, from chips to applications and security

China is trying to establish at least 50 sets of artificial intelligence (AI) standards by 2026, Beijing says in a new policy draft, as mainland China pushes to close the gap with the United States in the development of this technology.
At least 1,000 Chinese technology companies should be covered by such standards, according to a document released Tuesday by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT). The document also said China will participate in the definition of at least 20 international AI standards.
MIIT’s standardization initiative echoes the China-led resolution in United Nationswhich calls on the international community to create a “free, open, inclusive and non-discriminatory” business environment between rich and developing nations for the development of AI. This resolution on Monday was adopted unanimously by the United Nations General Assembly.
By setting standards for the rapidly growing AI industry, China is trying to close the gap with the United States in technology development and widespread adoption to increase efficiency in various sectors. Photo: Shutterstock

“AI is the fundamental and strategic technology driving the new round of technological revolution and industrial transformation,” the draft policy stated. By accelerating the integration of AI into the country’s economy, the MIIT said it would “profoundly change industrial production and economic development patterns.”

According to the agency, artificial intelligence “would play an important role” in increasing China’s manufacturing capacity and Internet power.

The MIIT’s draft policy has adopted a pro-market and soft-law approach, instead of typical command-and-control regulation, to guide and promote the development of China’s AI industry, according to You Chuanman, director of the Institute for International Affairs Centre for Regulation and Global Governance at the Shenzhen campus of the The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

“This is an innovation-oriented, market-friendly regulatory approach,” You said. “It’s more about enabling and promoting the development of technology and its ecosystem,” he added, describing it as beneficial to other industries.

More than a quarter of China’s 369 unicorns, startups valued at more than $1 billion, are involved in the nation’s artificial intelligence and semiconductor sectors. Photo: Shutterstock

The MIIT policy draft listed a total of 12 areas as critical technologies in the AI ​​supply chain. These include LLM, natural language processing, computer vision, and machine learning, a subfield of AI that refers to systems used to perform complex tasks similar to how humans solve problems.

According to the draft policy, China’s AI industry chain is composed of four levels: the base, which includes the computing power, algorithms and data needed to train LLMs, as well as the framework, model and applications.

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