One of China’s most powerful investment gurus has said that the country’s Greater Bay Area should work to accelerate data flow – and said that the region should look to fintech to do so.
Neil Shen, Managing Partner of Sequoia Capital, said that the smooth flow of data is currently challenging under the principle of “One Country, Two Systems” – the fundamental political framework allowing for different forms of governance in the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong – particularly when it comes to cross-border data safety.
Shen proposed tackling these issues by starting with the fintech industry, due to the industry’s extensive influence on digitalization, data and society.
A legal agenda of cooperation is already in place, Shen said: The Mainland and Hong Kong Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA), a 2003 document deepening free trade between the Chinese mainland and Hong Kong, as well as the Cyber Security Law of China, a major legal document for the country’s data management.
Shen said action should be taken quickly to select financial institutions and data projects to roll out soon.
Established in 2005, Sequoia Capital China is now managing funds worth more than 200 billion yuan ($29.8 billion). The company has invested in over 500 companies in China, over 50 of which have gone public, including JD.com, Alibaba, Sina, Meituan-Dianping and Beijing Genomics Institute (BGI).