A Comparative analysis of Cyber Sovereignty Policies in China and the EU

28 Pages Posted: 10 Aug 2021

See all articles by Yik Chan Chin

Yik Chan Chin

Beijing Normal University

Ke Li

Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU)

Date Written: August 6, 2021


The paper analyzes the similarities and differences between the EU’s and China’s policies on “sovereignty” in cyberspace. Facing some of the same challenges, the EU and China advocate various concepts of “sovereignty” in cyberspace, including “cyberspace sovereignty” and “data sovereignty”. However, the differences in strategic positioning result in great differences in the specific sovereignty positions between the EU and China. The EU does not explicitly propose the concept of cyberspace sovereignty, but regards data sovereignty as its own sovereignty in cyberspace. China claims cyberspace sovereignty as its core sovereignty, and further endorses the position of data sovereignty. The EU's position on data sovereignty is not only to maintain its ability to act in facing the competitions from China and the U.S., but also to become a global standard setter and export its rules and standards internationally. China’s positions on data sovereignty are: internally, defining the general rules of cross-border data flow and imposing data localization requirements for some specific industries, and externally, actively exercising extraterritorial legislative jurisdiction adhering to cyberspace sovereignty principle.

Keywords: Cyberspace Sovereignty, Digital Sovereignty, Data Sovereignty, EU, China

Suggested Citation

Chin, Yik Chan and Li, Ke, A Comparative analysis of Cyber Sovereignty Policies in China and the EU (August 6, 2021). TPRC49: The 49th Research Conference on Communication, Information and Internet Policy, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3900752 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3900752

Yik Chan Chin (Contact Author)

Beijing Normal University ( email )

19 Xinjiekou Outer St
Haidian District
Beijing, Guangdong 100875
+8613205149920 (Phone)

Ke Li

Xi'an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) ( email )

111 Renai Road, SIP
Suzhou, JiangSu province 215123

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