On Monday Baidu Inc BIDU announced it had signed a memorandum of understanding with China's Huaneng Power International Inc., one of the five largest state-owned electricity generating companies in China.
What Happened: Huaneng will utilize Baidu’s expertise in artificial intelligence and the internet to digitally transform its electricity and power operations into a new generation automated and intelligent financial shared services platform, according to a report. The Baidu AI and cloud computing technology will also enable Huaneng to increase its energy production, while making its operations cleaner and more environmentally friendly.
Why It Matters: China’s power plants have helped it to greatly grow its economy, but are also a big cause of pollution in the country. China’s new Ministry of Ecology and Environment is focused on enacting new policies to help entities in the power and manufacturing sector digitalize operations in order to meet China’s climate goals.
What’s Next: Baidu’s AI technology has helped it to land partnerships across a variety of sectors, from finance to transportation, and in January it announced a partnership with Volvo parent Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd GELYF to create a smart electric vehicle.
This recent partnership with China’s Huaneng is another step towards the Chinese government’s most recent five-year plan to completely digitalize its economy.
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