China’s tightening grip on the internet has forced US companies to recalibrate their efforts here, but there was little outward sign of friction as American executives on Sunday touted their commitment to the crucial Chinese market during the government’s annual cyberspace conference, The Wall Street Journal reports. Apple CEO Tim Cook and Cisco Systems CEO Chuck Robbins were among those echoing the conference theme: “Developing [a] digital economy for openness and shared benefits.” That theme “is a vision we at Apple share,” Mr. Cook said. “We are proud to have worked alongside many of our partners in China to help build a community to join a common future in cyberspace.”
That common future has caveats. Despite the assertion of openness, China’s internet is walled off from the rest of the world, with Google and Facebook among the platforms blocked. A new cyberspace law that went into effect June 1 tightened restrictions, leading Apple to remove VPNs from its Chinese App Store.