Asian ‘data sphere’ gives the country twice the information flows of the US
TOKYO — Back in 2001, the U.S. was the dominant country when it came to cross-border data flows. It was the early days of the internet boom, and America was where tech companies and tech-savvy consumers were.
But the global data order is changing rapidly.
China now accounts for 23% of cross-border data flows, nearly twice the share of the U.S., which ranks a distant second with 12%.
And the Chinese lead could turn into a dominant advantage as the formerly world-spanning internet shatters into the “splinternet”: a balkanized mosaic of information networks marked off by national borders.
A Nikkei survey of information on cross-border data flows from the International Telecommunication Union and U.S. research firm TeleGeography showed that cross-border data flows of China, including Hong Kong, in 2019 far outstripped any of the other 10 countries and regions examined, including the U.S.