As of 2021, China’s population exceeds 1.4 billion people according to United Nations data, which excludes Hong Kong, Macao, and Taiwan. This number makes up approximately one-fifth of the global population, and with the rapid rise in technology in recent years, it can be concluded that they are also one of the largest producers of data. Historically, there were 4 factors of production known to create economic wealth – land, capital, labour and entrepreneurship, but with an increasing global reliance on technology, data (knowledge) is now considered by many to be the fifth factor. Unlike the initial four factors of production, the pricing models for data are opaque with no ownership models truly in place, and ill definitions surrounding sensitivity and the categorization of data. According to many global experts and firms watching the developments with avid interest, China’s crackdown on Big Tech is seen to safeguard one of the world’s most valuable economic resources and is considered to be the new oil. This paper will provide insight into China’s changing data landscape regarding regulations, always linking back to the connection between alternative data availability, collection, and distribution. The content included in this paper has been collected through both publicly available sources as well as through interviews with data experts and proprietary client-only content available through Eagle Alpha’s Data Strategy solution.
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