Cultural kinship broadens China-ASEAN cyber co-op

Updated: 2014-09-19 17:39

By Yang Jie(

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Cultural kinship broadens China-ASEAN cyber co-op

The first China-ASEAN Cyberspace Forum started in Nanning, South China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region, on Sept 18, 2014. [Photo by Yang Jie/]

The time-honored cultural and people-to-people exchanges between China and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) provided the two sides with more opportunities to carry forward cyber cooperation, according to consensus reached by attending guests at a cyberspace forum on Thursday.

While infrastructure, software and social media are priority areas for cyber cooperation among different countries because language barriers hinder the cooperation from going into content, the cooperation between China and some ASEAN members can involve content because of their shared cultural background, said Charles Zhang, board chairman and CEO of Sohu, at the first China-ASEAN Cyberspace Forum in Nanning, Southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region.

"Sogou is a major software than enables Chinese character input, and I think there is a large need for Singaporeans to input Chinese," Zhang named an example for software collaboration.

"Digital content is also a good opportunity (for the cooperation between China and Singapore) because we have the same origin," continued Zhang. Sohu has introduced many Chinese dramas on its website, which the Chinese-speaking communities in Singapore are also very interested in.

The cultural and people-to-people exchanges between China and ASEAN nations can be dated back to 2,000 years ago. ASEAN nations now boast the largest number of overseas Chinese, totaling at 25 million and accounting for 75 percent of all overseas Chinese across the globe.

All this speaks for the good wishes of the 800 million online population in China and ASEAN to share their cultural achievements via the Internet, which makes it necessary for the two sides to expand online information sharing and make the Internet a platform showcasing the splendid cultural heritage of each nation, said Lu Wei, minister of Cyberspace Administration of China.

Among the top ten tourist destinations about which the travelogs are downloaded the most on, China's largest tourist information sharing website, eight are in ASEAN members, according to Lu. "We chose Cambodia because it's close and many tourist portals recommended it. We were amazed by some of the photos uploaded and shared by fellow tourists," said Zhang Li, a 28-year-old Chinese who spent her honeymoon in the ASEAN member nation.