The Driverless Commute: China issues first batch of L4-level automotive road-test driving licenses—all to Baidu

On July 1, 2019, the Beijing Automotive Driving Test Management Joint-Committee issued the first batch of L4 Level Automobile Road-Test driving licenses. The batch contained five licenses and all were obtained by Baidu, making it the first, and the only, company in China to have received the L4 license. The L4 license certificate is China’s number one, open-road, test-level qualification certificate, with the highest technical level, highest standard and most difficult testing scenarios.

Receiving the L4 license means that one’s autonomous vehicle has the ability to complete automated driving in complicated metropolitan roads at a level much higher than required by the T3 license.

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The Driverless Commute in Compliance Review: The prospect of the commercialization of Level-3 autonomous driving in China

1. Baidu joins hands with GAC, formally launching the high-precision map and self-localization mass production project

On April 11, Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Ltd. (“GAC”) and Baidu, the Autonomous Driving Technology Day of 2019 — “Intelligent Driving along the Way,” was successfully concluded in Guangzhou. At the event, Baidu and GAC held the launching ceremony of the high-precision map and self-localization mass production project, while announcing that the two sides have cooperated in putting up the Level-3 autonomous driving vehicle model of GAC, which is expected to be “off to the market”(上市 in 2020. We look forward to the GAC vehicle model’s early realization of the leap from the scientific research results to the mass production.

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The Driverless Commute in Compliance Review: Intelligent and digital infrastructures are scheduled to accompany automatic vehicles in China

Boao Forum for Asia (“BFA”) was held on March 26 to 29, 2019. Its sub-forum — 5G: The achiever of Internet of Things — talks about the 5G development.  The participants of this forum believed 5G development should be open, cooperative, globally unified and integrated with existing industrial facilities.

Miao Wei, the Minister of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (“MIIT”), said at BFA that the MIIT and Ministry of Transport (“MOT”) had reached a consensus that the government would devote itself to promoting the research on vehicle networking, and speeding up the intelligent and digital revolution on the highways in China.

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Data must stay in China to get tiered protection under Cyber Security Law

(Ed. note: This article originally appeared in Compliance Review)

Under China’s Cyber Security Law (“CSL”), there are compliance obligations or privileges. Obligation means the basic requirements to meet, any short of which will subject you to punishment. Privilege means the extra benefits nice to have, any short of which could make you less competitive.

Tiered protection (“TP”) is a mechanism that is both obligation and privilege. To be certified under TP, you would have prima facie evidence that your network system meets the basic safety requirements under the CSL. You can even use the TP certification to fend off some possible investigation or punishment.
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China to fast-track law-making in autonomous driving

(Ed. note: This article originally appeared in Compliance Review.)

On January 21st, 2019, Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the Communist Party of China (“CPC”) Central Committee, President of the People’s Republic of China and Chairman of the Central Military Commission, delivered an important speech at the opening ceremony of the Central CPC Institute. In the speech he stressed the importance of improving capabilities of preventing and defusing major risks.

When talking about the important part of national security, like science and technology, Xi pointed out that China should pace up with launching of preemptive alerting and monitoring system for science and technology security.  Especially, he called on fast-tracking the law-making in artificial intelligence, gene editing, medical diagnosis, autonomous driving, unmanned aerial vehicles, service robots and other fields.

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