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Baidu, Guangzhou ink transport deal

By QIU QUANLIN in Guangzhou | China Daily | Updated: 2020-08-29 10:06

Chinese internet search giant Baidu's logo. [Photo/Sipa]

Chinese internet tech giant Baidu Inc signed a series of cooperation agreements on Friday with Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong province, to jointly develop an intelligent transport network in the city.

"At the new era of artificial intelligence, we will provide innovative technologies to work with the local government to develop autonomous driving and smart transport," said Robin Li, chairman and CEO of Baidu Inc.

Specifically, Baidu's subsidiary, Guangzhou Apollo Intelligent Transportation Co Ltd signed an agreement with the Guangzhou-based Sci Group, in an investment worth nearly 460 million yuan ($67 million), to develop a self-driving and smart transport project.

"We are expecting that the self-driving taxis and buses will run on the city's roads sooner or later," said Li.

The company also signed with Guangzhou Public Transport Group Co Ltd to develop a smart transport network which would include the use of 5G technologies, along with Baidu's robotaxies and robobuses in the city's public transportation.

"To build confidence and create a future of AI, Baidu will work closely with Guangzhou to strengthen cooperation in areas of self-driving, intelligent connected vehicles and smart transportation," said Li.

The cooperation deals were signed during the Guangzhou Annual Investment Conference on Friday, an important platform for global elites to share views on cutting-edge economic topics and have discussions on cooperation and industrial development.

The conference is the first large-scale international investment promotion event held in Guangzhou since the COVID-19 outbreak.

Some 250 major projects were signed on Friday, with investment exceeding 600 billion yuan. They cover the fields of artificial intelligence, digital economy, financial services and cultural tourism.

After the signing ceremony, the local government also broke ground on projects worth more than 500 billion yuan on Friday.

The annual investment conference has been hosted for five consecutive years, and has invited domestic and foreign luminaries to deliver speeches on forward-looking topics with economic themes.

Attendees from business sectors would brainstorm during the annual event. The guests who have confirmed participation include Xu Jiayin, chairman of the Evergrande Group, Robin Li, chairman and CEO of Baidu, and Li Dongsheng, chairman and CEO of TCL.

Three special sessions to explore opportunities under the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area were held on Friday, highlighting emerging industries such as bio-medicine, AI, intelligent networking, and the digital economy.

Fan Feifei and Guo Jingyu contributed to this story.

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