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May 18, 2021

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Online new economy fuels growth

Shanghai unveiled its first ‘report card’ on the online new economy yesterday to mark the first anniversary of initiating the term last April.

The online new economy has become a new driver for Shanghai’s economic development, according to the city’s first white paper on the sector released by the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences at the opening ceremony of Shanghai Information Consumption Festival, part of the Double Five Shopping Festival that kicked off yesterday.

The online new economy means the deep integration of the information technologies, including artificial intelligence, 5G, Internet, big data and blockchain as well as traditional industries such as manufacturing, finance, entertainment, education, health care and transport.

The 2020 revenue of the software and information service industry reached 1.09 trillion yuan (US$170 billion) in Shanghai, up 12.5 percent year-on-year. Its added value was 325 billion yuan, rising 13.5 on year, accounting for 8.4 percent in total added value.

Shanghai had 21 top 100 Internet firms in 2020, the second most and only behind Beijing. The city has 84,000 enterprises in cross-border e-commerce, accounting for 14.8 percent of the whole country.

The city took 60 percent market share in third-party payment, 70 percent in local life services, 90 percent Internet literature and 30 percent in Internet games.

Shanghai’s Internet industry is mainly distributed in Zhangjiang in Pudong, Xuhui District, Changning District and Yangpu District.

The Pudong New Area is home to most Internet services companies in Shanghai, which creates half of related output across the city.

To further boost the online new economy and the information services industry, the festival was co-organized by the Shanghai Economy and Information Technology Commission and the Shanghai Information Services Association. The opening ceremony was livestreamed on more than 20 online platforms, including Shanghai-based Bilibili and Kuaishou.

Vice Mayor Wu Qing said that the “Online new economy stood out with three good qualities: the most innovative, the fast increasing and bringing concrete benefits to the public.”

Jiang Mingtao, an official at Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, said: “Consumption plays an increasingly important role in China’s economic development and information consumption has the widest radiation, which is key for expanding domestic demand and securing jobs.”

In 2020 Chinese people consumed 5.8 trillion yuan in information services, accounting for 10 percent in total consumption, Jiang added.

More than 200 industry professionals attended the opening ceremony. Almost all CEOs or founders of Shanghai’s leading companies in the information service industry were present, according to SISA’s Lu Lei.

A two-hour presentation featuring three entrepreneurs selling digital products was livestreamed after the opening ceremony of the festival.


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