歐美中建構數位主權,臺灣如何接招?

活動訊息

日期:2021年7月14日(三) 14:00-16:00

主持人:詹婷怡 副理事長(數位經濟產業發展協會)

與談人:

  • 吳建輝 副研究員(中央研究院歐美研究所)
  • 唐士哲 教授兼系主任(國立中正大學傳播學系)
  • 彭思遠 副主任(台灣經濟研究院國家經濟發展戰略中心 )
  • 黃勝雄 執行長(財團法人台灣網路資訊中心)

引言報告 / 吳建輝 副研究員

各國網路主權倡議內涵的差異彰顯出國際社會對網路秩序的不同想像。整體而言,網路主權倡議的精隨在於「政府擁有控制境內網路之權力」,此主張有別於過去由美國所提倡的「多方利害關係人」模式,亦與「資料主權」(個人可持有或控制資料之權利)概念有所不同。數位主權是近年趨勢,即使是超國家組織,使用「主權」字眼的情況也日益頻繁。 中國「數位主權」倡議彰顯出維繫統治之政治企圖,其欲透過控制網路安定國內政局。同時,中國也希望能創造一個屬於中國人的網路秩序,其已透過雙邊機制及聯合國等國際組織倡議「網路主權」概念,除監控功能外,網路主權也可為中國帶來高度經濟價值,使中國將國外科技巨頭排除於境外,並扶植國內科技產業,此措施屢遭歐美國家批評為「數位保護主義」,但近年來「數位保護主義」似乎已是國際發展趨勢,歐美諸國也開始跟進。

引言報告 / 彭思遠 副主任 【簡報下載

目前世界各國對數位主權之定義與想像各有不同,彭副主任參考德國版本,並從經濟角度看待此議題。2019年,德國總理梅克爾提出,德國須發展自有資料管理平臺,彰顯出德國發展數位產業之野心,副主任提到,未來資料中心可能位於太空或使用去中心化的區塊鏈技術,而數位主權議題的真正關鍵可能在於爭奪「訂定與管理標準」之權力,該議題未來可能將被區分為「國家對國家」與「政府對企業(科技龍頭)」兩大面向,目前仍以前者為主。

根據全球最有價值品牌之排名,美國企業仍獨領風騷,美國主要科技大廠所創造的總市值規模已超越許多國家,未來全球數位經濟版圖仍將以中美競爭為主軸,歐洲企業仍難望其項背。近年來,由於歐盟想提升自己在國際數位領域的地位,因此推出許多數位法規並已引起全球討論,包括具反壟斷性質的《數位市場法》、《數位服務法》與徵收全球數位稅。

從政策面來看,美國拜登政府已推翻過去川普時代的「美國優先」模式,目前拜登政府認定中國為唯一競爭對手,對於具多邊協議性質的全球數位稅亦採開放態度。在中國方面,雖然其網路實力已大幅發展,但目前面臨內部經濟不穩及對外政策(一帶一路)成效不彰之議題,且為因應中美貿易戰而簽署的《中歐全面投資協定》亦遭歐盟議會凍結,彭副主任認為拜登政府仍將延續川普政府之抗中立場。目前中國國內數位政策以滿足內需的「內循環」為主,相關作為包括發行數位貨幣及積極推動促進國內數位產業發展的政策。

雖然未來數位科技的主戰場仍以中美競爭為主,但歐盟也透過推動數位法規使其得以在數位領域佔有一席之地。彭副主任指出,未來「去中心化」將是國際數位領域發展重點,目前包括薩爾瓦多在內的部分國家因國內基礎設施不足而大量使用行動支付,行動支付可幫助這些國家直接邁向下一發展階段。 在美中國際角力持續發展的情況之下,我國並未具足夠實力與話語權,但仍可效法歐盟作法,制定能跟上國際數位治理趨勢之法規,副主任進一步建議,政府應規畫訂定數位政策之專責機構。

焦點座談

唐士哲 教授簡報下載

數位主權倡議與發展已是臺灣不可輕忽之議題,唐教授以歐盟作法為出發點,並提出我國的因應之道。唐教授首先介紹歐盟的《塑造歐洲數位未來》戰略,強調歐盟數位主權倡議的基本價值是「以人為本」,其中提到的目標包括開啟新商機、鼓勵科技發展、培植開放民主社會、營造富活力且永續的經濟體制以及能對抗氣候變遷的綠能轉換。支撐戰略的政策支柱包括:發展對人民有用的科技、公平且競爭的資訊科技與開放、民主且永續的社會。

近年來,歐盟已在數位領域喪失主導權,因此屢屢推出戰略和法規試圖扳回一城,相關作法包括:訂定更明確的資料保護規範;建立數位信賴機制;管制科技巨頭並訂定公平交易法規;建立自主的資料空間;以及打造透明且協力的雲端基礎設施。目前德國與法國已合作提出「Gaia-X方案」,目標是整合全歐盟的雲端系統。

由於我國位在亞太海纜的必經之路上,因此具地緣優勢,且目前包括微軟在內的大型科技巨頭也宣布將投資我國成立大型資料中心,我國可配合這些企業並協助其在地儲存資料。最後,我國具技術優勢,可提供晶圓代工和5G零件。 若考量歐盟「以人為本」之方案,我國必須思考跨國數位企業、「守門人」與資料之間的依賴關係,目前我國大量依賴由外國供應商所提供之平臺,因此本土平臺及影音產業正處於萎縮狀態,唐教授建議我國政府訂定更全面的數位空間政策,以本國人民需求為考量點,並支持發展多元的數位產業內容。

吳建輝 副研究員

吳副研究員肯定彭副主任之觀點,若從「國家對國家」的角度來看待數位主權議題,目前以美國為主導的數位貿易規範是以「開放資料」為前提,但歐盟提出的貿易規範卻試圖打破此原則,多數情況下的數位資料流通都須依循《通用資料保護規則》(General Data Protection Regulation,GDPR),僅有少數情況除外,兩者立場顯然互相矛盾。 「數位主權」的另一大重點是「科技議題」,科技議題包括反壟斷法規是否能跨國適用,以及政府如何透過法規建構與業者之間的關係。未來須考量的議題還包括國內數位法規是否可能影響我國之國際關係,在國力不足的情況下,我國恐難以要求外國公民或企業遵守國內規範。

黃勝雄 執行長

目前中國和俄國已透過立法規範境內網路空間,中國透過《網路安全法》保護公民個資並實施監控審查,俄國則透過《網路獨立法》要求公民使用俄製App,且俄國已發行自用的Wikepedia,該法也鼓勵俄國公民使用國家推出的網路資源。

在扣押國際非法域名的議題上,除美國外,目前並未有任何成功的跨境扣押案例。儘管美國今年成功扣押非法伊朗域名,然其扣押流程並未遵守司法互助程序。最後,目前ICANN仍為全球路由管理者,因此未來是否會形成分裂網路之情況,仍須考量ICANN在網路治理中所扮演的關鍵角色。

彭思遠 副主任

美國與歐盟的數位主權觀點可說是大異其趣,美國仍以「自由市場」為最高指導原則,其主張以保障國內企業爭取最大市場為目的;但歐盟強調「數位人權」,主張將資料主控權歸還於消費者,並已推出符合上述原則的「開放銀行政策」,我國也於去年推出類似政策。這類政策將鼓勵金融創新,同時使消費者從大企業手中拿回個資主導權。

最後,去中心化平臺有利於資料互相轉換,雖然目前企業仍大幅受制於政府,但未來或可採用去中心化模式儲存及提供資料以規避管制。我國除具半導體產業技術優勢外,去中心化技術也正持續發展。

詹婷怡 副理事長

詹副理事長指出,美國、歐盟和中國之作法值得關注,但三方對「數位主權」之認知與想像不盡相同,若一味仿效,則可能落入「見樹不見林」之陷阱,建議我國政府可從資料處理著手,透過參考相關政策訂出合適規範。最後,建構數位主權是一個漸進緩慢而非一蹴可幾的過程,除須擬定諸多法案外,還須進行國際交流並提出國際倡議,我國須先了解自身處境,以此為出發點考量應納入何種政策。

提問與回應

問題列表

  • 從維護數位主權角度來看,我國須採取何種隱私資料保護政策及相關措施才能維護公民隱私?

與談人回應

彭思遠副主任:

根據我國法規,目前主流平臺有處理消費者資料之權力,彭副主任認為政府須建構適切申訴機制並盡可能採取更多消費者保護措施。從成本角度來看,消費者通常會以低成本之方式使用平臺,教育消費者的成本較高,因此不能期待消費者仔細閱讀並理解複雜瑣碎的合約內容。

吳建輝副研究員:

近年來,我國NGO也開始倡議「資料主權」,主張消費者有掌控個資之權利,但目前存在一種將資料視為經濟資源的強烈趨勢,而經濟發展與隱私保護難兩全,未來政策重點應是在兩者間尋求平衡。

黃勝雄董事長:

建議政府設置保護個資的獨立機關,並訂定通用的個資準則。雖然資料能促進經濟發展,但須先辨別何種資料有更高的商業價值。

唐士哲教授: 同意詹副理事長的觀點,應先理解各國數位倡議脈絡,並反省我國情況以審慎評估不同的政策方案。

How should Taiwan understand digital sovereignty?

Information

Date:  July 14 (Wed.) 2021, 14:00-16:00(on live)

Location: Online service only

Moderator:

  • Ting-Yi (Nicole) Chan, Vice Chair, Digital Transformation Association (DTA)

Panelist:

  • Chien-Huei Wu, Associate Research Fellow, Institute of European and American Studies (IEAS), Academia Sinica  
  • Kenny Huang, Managing Director & CEO, Taiwan Information Network Center (TWNIC)
  • Shih-che Tang, Professor & Department Chair, Department of Communications, National Chung Cheng University
  • SsuYuan Peng, Deputy Director, Economic Development Strategic Planning Center, Taiwan Institute of Economic Research

Session details:

The EU Commission published Shaping Europe’s Digital Future in February and Digital Compass in March. Illustrating EU’s digital policy framework in the coming decade, both proposals aim to advance digital transformation of the industry while emphasizing the necessity of strengthening EU’s technical sovereignty, reducing reliance on both the United States and China.

China claimed in 2000 that the Internet within Chinese territory is under the jurisdiction of Chinese sovereignty. In the World Internet Conference in 2015, Xi Jinping stressed again that the international community should respect the “Internet sovereignty” of individual countries. On the other hand, the Clean Network Program published under US former president Trump was also referred to as the American version of ‘Internet Sovereignty.’ The world’s top 3 economies are all constructing their vision of digital sovereignty. Taiwan has trading relations with all of them and technical strategic ties with some of them. How should Taiwan understand these digital sovereignty claims and policies? What does Taiwan do in response?

Minutes

Nicole Chan opened the session with a brief background introduction. According to Nicole, the public attention towards today’s topic—digital sovereignty—was mostly intrigued by the recent movement of major countries in the digital space. On the one hand, the European Commission published the draft of the Digital Market Act (DMA) to ‘ensuring fair and open digital markets.’ On the other hand, the Chinese government has noticeably strengthened its hold over tech giants within the country, cracking Alibaba, Didi, Tencent down with its revised antitrust law.

These events marked a significant shift of the governments’ attitude and approach to the Internet; it might even encourage opinions arguing that the sovereignty claims in the digital space are on the rise. Whether such arguments are accurate or not, we should keep in mind that different states can have very different ideas of what accounts for sovereignty—for instance, the United States has been the strongest advocate for a ‘free and open Internet’ while the EU is starting to entertain the idea of digital sovereignty, albeit their conceptualization is remarkedly different from the Chinese claim of ‘Internet Sovereignty’—and their practices of such ideas also vary accordingly.

Digital sovereignty is complicated not only because it means differently for different countries but also that it embeds a wide array of issues, ranging from a country’s ambition to challenge the existing world order to regional union’s desperate effort to regain its advantage in the competition of digital innovation.

This was why, before jumping into the panel discussion, Nicole invited two panelists of different disciplines to give a short presentation on digital sovereignty. The first panelist, Chien-Huei Wu, shared his insights on the authoritarian turn of the global cyber order. With a Ph.D. in Law, Wu analyzed various species of sovereignty claims through the lens of international law and multilevel constitutionalism.

Wu’s presentation was built on his thesis Sovereignty Fever: The Territorial Turn of Global Cyber Order (to be published on The Zeitschrift für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht (ZaöRV)/Heidelberg Journal of International Law (HJIL)). Wu suggested that there are at least three variants of sovereignty in cyberspace. The first is cyber sovereignty, often used interchangeably with Internet sovereignty; first seen in 2010 in China’s White Paper on the Internet, cyber sovereignty has been what China and its allies (majorly the BRICS) upheld as the ideal Internet governance model. The second variant, digital sovereignty, is relatively recent but gaining popularity among democratic countries such as the EU. Last but not least, there is ‘data sovereignty,’ which, according to Wu, is an attempt to reclaim and retain control, autonomy and sufficiency over data flows. India, for example, is one of the main advocates and practitioners of this view.

Wu contributed the ‘sovereignty fever’ to four key factors: political ambition, economic value, security concerns, and human rights values. The four factors, Wu emphasized, were not clear-cut as they are often interdependent or intertwined.

China is the perfect manifestation of political ambition being the driving force of the state’s promotion of Internet sovereignty. China has always aspired to overthrow the existing world order in cyberspace and set new norms. On the other hand, and more importantly, asserting that the Internet within the Chinese territory is under the jurisdiction of Chinese sovereignty also serves as the cornerstone of the country’s capacity to control and regulate information flows within its border. Upholding the view of Internet sovereignty is just another means for the Chinese Communist Party to justify its surveillance regime and ensure its authority stays unchallenged.

Economic value is also a vital driving force for countries’ sovereignty claims. For China, the exclusion of foreign Information Communication Technology (ICT) enterprises from the domestic market, complimented with heavy subsidies for local business, was the magic sauce of China’s ICT industry’s success. On the other hand, the EU has been anxious about lacking behind the United States and China in technical innovation. Both the Digital Market Act (DMA) and Digital Service Act (DSA) were the EU’s attempt to curb the American’s ICT oligopoly while establishing its strategic autonomy in the digital space.

As suggested above, countries’ interpretations and pursuit of sovereignty in cyberspace vary. The same can be said for cybersecurity, as the US and its democratic allies sit on the one side of the spectrum while China and Russia far away on the opposite side. China and Russia refer to ‘information security’ in discussions of security in cyberspace. They are also the most vocal opponent of the current cyber norms, which they perceive as a US-led, hegemonic attempt at global dominance and potential regime subversion. For the US and EU, cybersecurity refers to criminal activities online, and what concerns them the most are the state-sponsored cyberattacks by China and Russia.

The human rights value is what the EU distinct itself from both the US and China in its position regarding particular issues such as privacy and data governance. Both the European Charter of Fundamental Rights and General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are the EU’s justification of guarding its citizen’s personal data, while the US has been the hardcore defender of free data flow.   

The second panelist was SsuYuan Peng, Deputy Director of the Economic Development Strategic Planning Center at Taiwan Institute of Economic Research. He analyzed the digital sovereignty discussions from an economic point of view. According to Peng, the pivot of the digital sovereignty debate was actually ‘who has the authority to develop standards?’

This echoes Wu’s points in his presentation. China and Russia are unhappy with the current system and are pushing for new standards; the EU, on the other hand, is aligned with most values the US uphold while trying to gain its lead in the future by publishing universally binding regulations. One can argue that the current US hegemony in the ICT industry is less the administration’s deeds than the tech giants. This was also why Peng thought that the digital sovereignty debate would depart from the contest between countries and become the tug of war with states and businesses on the opposite side.

Peng shared some numbers to better illustrate his points. According to Kantar BrandZ Most Valuable Global Brands 2021 by Kantar, 56 of the Top 100 brands are American brands, accounting for 74% of the Top 100’s total value. This is astonishing considering the US (the country) only takes up 24% of global GDP. Out of the top 10 brands, 8 are US brands and 7 are from the tech sector. Moreover, China has consolidated its lead over Europe. Chinese brands have grown from 11% to 14% of the Top 100 value in the past ten years while European brands now represent only 8% of the ranking’s value versus 20% in 2011.

Peng pointed out that the tech giants accounting for the most valuable global brands actually are richer than most countries in the world. When a handful of companies control such a significant portion of the global economy, governments are inevitably alarmed and developing plans to counter such power.

Again, different countries have different strategies when it comes to the battle with the tech giants. EU’s response is to develop regulations and policies with global scope; GDPR, DMA, and DSA are all examples of the EU’s struggle to reassert its authority in the ever-expanding digital space. In the US, the Biden administration, in contrast to Trump’s indulgence of unfair competition, is committed to reining in powerful tech companies by appointing long-term and powerful critics of tech giants to powerful regulatory positions. Unlike what many people are warning about China’s rising, Peng considered China rather passive in this geopolitical power play in the digital space. According to Peng, China has been struggling inside and out of the country’s border. Domestically, the Chinese government already has too much on its plate with the unstable financial market, an aging and hugely imbalanced population, and a currency detached from the global monetary system. The one belt one road ambition is also facing a lot of fightbacks and accusations from the partnering countries. For now, the Chinese government is relying heavily on domestic demand, what Xi calls the ‘internal circulation.’ The state-sponsored digital currency, electronic Chinese yuan (e-CNY), is another attempt of Beijing to boost its sluggish economy. Still, the result is yet to be seen as the Chinese Yuan has never gained much significance in the international monetary system.

To open the panel discussion, Nicole presented three questions for the panelists.

  • As leaders of powerful countries begin to embrace the view of digital sovereignty, should Taiwan follow their examples? If yes, how should we practice the idea considering Taiwan’s peculiar global political circumstance?
  • Taiwan has technical strategic partnership and trade relations with all three of the economies—the US, EU, and China. There are also unavoidable complications taking into account Taiwan’s particular geopolitical situation. How does Taiwan respond to the global trend of digital sovereignty where the biggest 3 economies are apparently the major players?
  • Are there any global, regional, or national regulation developments Taiwan should be paying attention to regarding the digital economy?

Professor Shih-che Tang from the Department of Communications at National Chung Cheng University admitted that he was no expert on the issue of digital sovereignty, but he would try his best to answer the questions from a public communication perspective. EU’s digital strategy could be a good example, according to Tang. The strategy’s purpose is to provide digital solutions that put people first, which Tang thought should be the path we follow when countering the digital transformation.

Of course, an example should only be taken as an example and not be copied in full. Tang argued that the embedded humanitarian values in the EU’s digital strategy are the most valuable takeaway for Taiwan if we are to initiate any similar plans. He also noted that Taiwan enjoys many geopolitical advantages entering the digital era. We are at the crux of many undersea cables, and the administration has always welcomed global tech’s plans of data localization. Google, for instance, established its data center in Taiwan along with Microsoft. In terms of the global supply chain, Taiwan is the most critical chokepoint when it comes to semiconductors, the quintessential element of our digital future.

To foster a people-first digital environment in Taiwan, Tang suggested that we consider seriously how the government and society could address Taiwan’s heavy reliance on tech giants’ data. One of the possible solutions is to invest more in the local content-creating sector.

Kenny’s technical background naturally orients him to the developments and emerging trends of the Internet infrastructure. His point was that many common practices dealing with the Internet infrastructure developed and standardized organically without state government’s interference. Take domain dispute resolutions for example, the most common resort is Uniform Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP), which was developed by the global ICANN community using its multistakeholder policy development process.

One cannot, however, fully escape from the geopolitical implications even in an allegedly multistakeholder environment. Kenny mentioned that the US is the only country in the world that is able to confiscate domains under generic top-level domains (gTLDs). Governments in other countries, authoritarian or democratic, only have authority over their own country code top-level domains (ccTLDs). The prestige of the US government does not come from it being the ‘inventor’ of the Internet but the fact that ICANN is a non-profit organization incorporated in California. This, of course, is the source of serious concerns for governments in other countries, especially those who are not especially friendly with the US. However, due to technical issues on Kenny’s side, he was cut off several times and could not deliver his points fully. In closing, Nicole reminded the audience that we have to be careful when learning about other countries’ digital regulatory initiatives. Each country/economy has its distinct cultural, historical, social, and economic background, and we have to always consider the context before we want to imitate the approach. Every country is unique in its own way, and the best path for Taiwan to the digital future should be developed and explored with our unique context in mind.