China approves over 40 AI models for public use in six months.

In the first six months since Chinese authorities initiated oversight of AI development, more than 40 artificial intelligence (AI) models have received approval for public use, as reported by Chinese media. Last week, regulators granted approvals for 14 large language models (LLM), marking the fourth batch of approvals, with companies like Xiaomi Corp, 4Paradigm, and 01.AI among the recipients.

Since August, Beijing has mandated tech companies to seek regulatory approval before making their LLMs publicly accessible. This approach underscores China’s strategy of fostering AI technology development while maintaining regulatory oversight and control.

The initial batch of AI model approvals was granted in August, with companies like Baidu, Alibaba, and ByteDance among the first recipients. Subsequent batches were approved in November and December, followed by the latest batch this month.

While the government has not disclosed the specific list of approved companies, the Securities Times reported that over 40 AI models have received approval. Chinese companies have been actively developing AI products, particularly after the global impact of OpenAI’s ChatGPT in 2022. At that time, China possessed 130 LLMs, constituting 40% of the global total, second only to the United States with a 50% share, according to brokerage CLSA.

Baidu’s Ernie Bot, a prominent ChatGPT-like chatbot in China, claimed over 100 million users, as revealed by the company’s CTO in December.