Stories

Caged giants: Why China's Big Tech can’t escape the Communist Party

A cage made out of Chinese characters
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

China's biggest tech companies have thrived at home, easily beating out what little foreign competition they face and monopolizing several industries at once — but at a steep cost.

The bottom line: The Chinese government gives its corporate champions nearly unfettered access to the country's 770 million internet users, but that comes with the fear that Chinese President Xi Jinping could make it disappear in an instant. And as China's tech giants get bigger and richer, the Communist Party gets more nervous.