HANNOVER, Germany—Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in a brief video speech at the CeBIT opening ceremonies on March 15 here, called for new levels of international cooperation in access to markets, and in protection of intellectual property.
Li said that for China to progress in the international marketplace, China and other nations need to form a framework for cooperation. He said that he was kicking off the search for such cooperation by negotiating new levels of cooperation with Germany, starting in 2015.
He was followed by an unprecedented call for international standards for data security by Vice Premier Ma Kai. Ma, who has made news by calling for reduced restrictions in commerce in China, said that for international ecommerce to succeed there must be a guarantee of data security for all users. Ma said that only by having adequate data security will countries be able to drop barriers to trade and technology.
Ma said that security is a concern for all countries, and in a veiled reference to U.S. National Security Agency spying, called for international rules on data security and for the protection of intellectual property for all countries. He said that while China needs to become more open to outsiders it must be accompanied by the respect for the security of all participants.
China has the fastest growing information communications and technology market in the world, he said, and he noted that for trade to become truly international all sides must participate in respecting intellectual property, security and trade.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel responded by calling 2015 the "Year of Cooperation," pledging to reduce or eliminate state obstacles to trade between Germany and China.
Merkel also announced a new effort to bring broadband Internet access to all of Germany at speeds of at least 50 megabits per second. She announced that the goal would be reached through high-speed wireless connections to rural areas and said that new bandwidth would be achieved through spectrum auctions much like those currently being conducted by the Federal Communication Commission in the United States.
Merkel and Ma called for enforceable rules for net neutrality and openness within and among their respective nations. Merkel said that she is actively working for new European Union net neutrality standards. Merkel also followed up on Ma's call for global data security standards, saying that security was necessary for global cooperation.
Merkel also called for changes in German and EU laws to allow universal deployment of public WiFi, and called for free public WiFi in public spaces throughout Germany.