China's Jinping Opens Tech Meet With Calls For 'Fair & Equitable' Internet

The third Wuzhen World Internet Conference had a strong presence of US tech companies despite criticism of China’s Internet laws.

Chinese President Xi Jinping opened the third Wuzhen World Internet Conference this week with a call for “more fair and equitable” laws governing the Internet globally, but at the same time seeking to uphold “cyber sovereignty,” The Wall Street Journal reports.  

The conference, organized by the Cyberspace Administration of China, is under particularly criticism this year because it comes right after the country passed a controversial cybersecurity law tightening and centralizing state control over information flows and technology equipment. The law has been widely criticized by US trade groups.

This year’s conference is also smaller than last year and without a ‘hole in the Great Firewall’ for its participants to access the wider web. But it still has strong representation from US tech firms with executives from Facebook, Microsoft, IBM, Tesla Motors and others slated to speak at the meet, according to the Journal report.

President Xi also said China would work to “bring about an open, inclusive and secure cyberspace” with “orderly development,” but conference topics remain clear reminders of the country’s opinion towards Internet freedom.

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