China Sweetens Its Cloud-Computing Offer in U.S. Trade Talks – The Wall Street Journal
What happened: China has revised its offer to ease restrictions on foreign cloud service companies, allowing them easier access to the cloud computing sector in a bid to reach a compromise with the US in trade negotiations. Last week, Chinese Vice Premier Liu He proposed to issue more licenses to data center operators and lift the 50% foreign investment cap for cloud service providers. Negotiators from both sides continue to haggle over the cloud computing offer this week.
Why it’s important: China is set to become the world’s largest cloud market by 2023, according to recent estimates. US tech giants including Amazon, Microsoft, and Apple have invested millions of dollars to set up cloud services in China, but their operations are hampered by Chinese regulations. For example, foreign software service operators have to set up a joint venture with a local partner and ownership is capped at 50%.