American automaker Tesla has opened a data center in Shanghai. The facility, which first became known in April, was built after Chinese regulators began developing new requirements for overseas companies to store local user data in the country.
There are few specific details about the new data center. The Tesla China division, according to the head of the company’s state communications department, operates in China and, accordingly, is forced to comply with all Chinese laws and regulations. Thus, the data of Chinese Tesla users will be stored in the Middle Kingdom. A month earlier, the CEO of electric car maker Elon Musk joked that even if Tesla used its products to spy in China, the data storage in the Chinese data center would stop it. We will remind, the Chinese military and officials were banned from traveling to Tesla due to fears of espionage.
Note that Chinese law requires foreign companies to enter into partnerships with local firms, usually government ones, on data center transactions. For example, Amazon Web Services partnered with Beijing Sinnet Technology, while Microsoft and IBM turned to 21Vianet Group. Apple has partnered with state-owned Guizhou-Cloud Big Data Industry (GCBD), and previously had a contract with China Telecom. Apple was forced to make major concessions on security keys by storing them on servers controlled by China.
It is not yet clear which Chinese company Tesla is partnering with, and where exactly its new facility is located. In the US, Tesla is building a major Dojo user-data processing system that will use the company’s own D1 chips.
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