China Press Review – April 29, 2020

Press review

China’s economy is recovering from the coronavirus, but don’t expect it to ‘save’ the global economy
The latest data gives confidence that China’s economy should slowly return to normal by the end of the year. But developed economies’ recovery won’t mirror China’s   Beijing’s priority is to steady the economy. It’s likely to favour measured support over any large-scale stimulus that could risk its financial stability

China Banks on ‘Consumption Coupons’ to Stimulate Economy
Around two-dozen cities are giving out electronic vouchers that they hope will revive businesses hobbled by COVID-19.

IMF Chief Sees Pandemic As “Great Opportunity”
Normally, when we talk about someone attempting to exploit a terrible situation to advance their own agenda we reference the infamous maxim, “never let a crisis go to waste.” But it’s generally said as a comment on how terribly the person is acting. It’s rare indeed when you see a public figure coming right out and saying it themselves with no apparent sense of shame. And yet that’s what happened this week when the Director of the International Monetary Fund was on a videoconference with the Atlantic Council. Kristalina Georgieva literally said that a crisis is never to be missed as an opportunity…

Coronavirus: China’s economic woes could be worse than thought as legions of migrant workers return home
Migrant workers, some who had only arrived in the southern manufacturing hub of Guangzhou a few days earlier, are being forced to head back home   Rising unemployment figures and closed factories suggest China’s job market is straining in the wake of the virus

Coronavirus: China’s hi-tech hub Shenzhen suffered record economic contraction in first quarter of 2020
Shenzhen’s technology-based economy was unable to avoid a hit from the coronavirus pandemic, shrinking 6.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2020     China’s hi-tech hub across the border from Hong Kong is the home to the likes of Huawei, ZTE and Tencent

How large is China’s economy really?
Which country has the larger economy. Based on 2019 GDP China’s economy is about 2/3 the size of the USA but when adjusted for PPP (purchasing power parity) is about 1/3 bigger. In other words the PPP adjustment doubles the size of China’s economy relative to the US. But is this correct? Using the expenditure method the US GDP ($21,729bn in 2019) is made up of approximately 66% personal consumption (of which 20% goods and 46% services), 17% investment and 17% Government expenditure (of which 3% is investment and 14% current expenditure). (St Louis Fed)

US economy shrank at 4.8 per cent annual rate last quarter, the worst result since global financial crisis
Forecasters say the drop in the January-March quarter will be only a precursor of a far grimmer GDP report to come on the current April-June period   President Donald Trump told reporters this week that he expects a ‘big rise’ in GDP in the third quarter, followed by an ‘incredible fourth quarter’

US-China decoupling to be accelerated by tightening of technology export controls, experts say
Under the leadership of US President Donald Trump, Washington this week broadened restrictions on technology exports to China to keep products away from the militaryExperts expect severe supply chain disruptions and accelerated decoupling as the coronavirus row also inflames the relationship between the two superpowers

Who is winning the China-US race to run the world amid the Covid-19 pandemic?
Crisis has brought potential to redraw the map of global power and influence, but there is ‘deep-seated mistrust’ of Beijing    While the US has ‘spectacularly failed to lead’, China is under mounting pressure and the WHO has become a political football

China Bets $600 Billion on Infrastructure to Revive Growth
China is trying to build its way out of the coronavirus slump. Economists expect local governments   across the country to issue as much as 4 trillion yuan ($565 billion) in so-called special bonds this year, roughly twice last year’s total. The proceeds are to be spent on the same type of things that China splurged on following the global financial crisis more than a decade ago — roads, airports, and railways.  The plan is evident in the city of Heze in Shandong province, a relative backwater that’s nevertheless starting work on a connection to its first high-speed railway line.

Huawei’s HiSilicon overtakes Qualcomm as China’s top smartphone processor supplier for first time
Huawei’s secretive chip unit shipped slightly more smartphone processor shipments in the latest quarter despite the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report   US chip giant Qualcomm, the long-time market leader, saw its market share slide year-on-year from 37.8 per cent to 32.8 per cent in the latest quarter

Cash-strapped electric carmaker NIO obtains US$1 billion lifeline from strategic investors
The deal calls for NIO to transfer its core businesses and assets into a new company   The new firm, called NIO China, will establish its headquarters in Hefei, capital of eastern Anhui province

Meet Pinduoduo, Alibaba’s Newest Competition
Chinese e-tailer Pinduoduo has found amazing success with its “collective buying” shopping model, but now it needs to innovate or suffer the consequences. Pinduoduo isn’t just the new kid on the block anymore. The US-listed e-tailer that specializes in offering group discounts has climbed to third in China’s e-commerce landscape, sitting only behind titans like Alibaba and With its “collective buying” shopping model, Pinduoduo has won some impressive victories in a time of overwhelming competition. Regarding market share, Pinduoduo had achieved the seemingly impossible: organic growth despite a preexisting duopoly. According to CNBC, Pinduoduo reached 585.2 million active buyers during 2019. Meanwhile, had 362 million in the same period, with Alibaba coming in first with 711 million annual active consumers. EMarketer highlights that Pinduoduo ranked third in terms of retail e-commerce sales share in 2019, which represented 7.3 percent of the market.

There are no food delivery winners
In 2019, following years of astounding growth, China’s food delivery market was worth $86.2 billion. With their sights set on massive market potential, Chinese tech firms had scrambled to enter the sector in search of what was seen as a surefire road to profits. As always, they adhered to the prevailing model of running a business in China’s tech world—snapping up market share with marketing campaigns and massive user discounts, building the brand, and finally monetizing the business leveraging market dominance

Is Now The Time To Invest in China?
COVID-19 continues to spread on a global scale, and it’s now clear the virus’ symptoms reach beyond its unpredictable illness. The pandemic is both accelerating and exacerbating economic problems that already existed before the outbreak. For example, the US and China’s ongoing tit-for-tat trade war had already weakened American fashion retailers thanks to tariff costs, and now, because of a severe disruption to the world’s international shipping and supply chain, manufacturing in China has become an even more removed solution. For foreign brands — especially smaller players — the sky-high cost of digital spending and shifting market and tech platform regulations have become barriers that are devastating their ability to operate in China.

China’s Massive Banks Are Facing a $42 Billion Dividend Trap
As dividends are slashed around the world, the $42 billion in promised payouts by China’s biggest banks have a powerful defender — the Communist Party.

China is taking these steps to avoid a second wave of COVID-19
China is easing lockdowns as the number of new coronavirus cases dwindles.  But it remains vigilant to stop a second wave of infections. New measures promote “civilized behaviour”. Social distancing and hygiene measures remain in force. China has announced new measures to avoid a second wave of COVID-19 infections as it gradually reopens its economy and releases citizens from coronavirus lockdowns.

Coronavirus could return seasonally, China’s scientists say
Coronavirus will likely be sticking around seasonally — like the common flu — largely because of asymptomatic carriers who can unwittingly spread the virus, according to a report.
“This is very likely to be an epidemic that co-exists with humans for a long time, becomes seasonal and is sustained within human bodies,” said Jin Qi, director of China’s Institute of Pathogen Biology, according to a Bloomberg report.

Chinese Cities Advise Against Holiday Travel Amid COVID-19
To prevent possible coronavirus infections, many schools are discouraging families from traveling over the upcoming Labor Day holiday.

To Meet the Demand for COVID-19 Testing, Many Labs are Repurposing.
It’s National Laboratory Week, an annual celebration of medical laboratory professionals and pathologists who play a vital role in health care…especially now during the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the Harvard Global Health Institute, the U.S. needs nearly four times the amount of COVID-19 tests made available to individuals and organizations in order to reopen the economy. Further, it is estimated that as many as one in three COVID-19 tests are inaccurate.

India cancels China procurement orders as test kits received test “faulty”
Efforts by an Indian agency to procure rapid antibody coronavirus test kits from China have come to naught, with the Indian government deciding to withdraw the “faulty” test kits from use and cancelling all procurement orders. The controversy around the efficacy and pricing of the rapid tests is set to change the way India now tests for the novel coronavirus.

India could see COVID-19 end 99% by June: Data scientists
A team of researchers from Singapore has predicted that the COVID-19 will end 99% by June 16 globally. India has already crossed the peak level of infection transmission and the country will see complete end of the pandemic by August 1 – they estimated.

Coronavirus: China’s steel sector steadies, as investors hope for post-pandemic stimulus boom
Iron ore prices have not fallen in the way oil prices have in 2020, with many in the industry hoping for a construction boom in China     Beijing has yet to unleash major fiscal stimulus post-coronavirus, but there are signs that the steel industry is stabilizing

Japan to extend state of emergency due to coronavirus: Nikkei
 The Japanese government is planning to extend the state of emergency over the new coronavirus pandemic by about one month for the entire country, the Nikkei business daily reported on Wednesday. The government will make a final decision after hearing from experts at a meeting on Friday, the Nikkei said.  The state of emergency is currently scheduled to end on May 6.

Coronavirus: Two million Bangladesh jobs ‘at risk’ as clothes orders dry up
High Street fashion emporiums around the world have closed their doors for lockdowns, but the largely forgotten victims are thousands of miles from the glass and steel-fronted shopping arcades.

How Technology is Impacting UK-China Business Ties Under COVID-19
The COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak is causing tech firms in the UK to reconsider their strategies in China and Asia at large.   Due to virus lockdown measures, some companies have been forced to suspend their operations or even suddenly pivot to creating new products on a short-term basis. Others, however, are seeing more business than ever as consumers stuck at home flock to their products.  Global supply chains were already in a difficult state before the COVID-19 outbreak, namely due to prolonged US-China trade tensions and the UK’s exit from the European Union. The already precarious state of global supply chains were then thrown in disarray with the initial outbreak and subsequent shutdown in China, and later worldwide.

ASEAN, 5G and the great tech game
For many economies, 5G innovation promises an opportunity to scale the economic ladder in a technological arena that will undergird the connectivity-based and data-driven Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR). But for major powers, 5G innovation is an emerging battlefield for technological, economic and military domination. For all its economic promise, this next-generation technology has the potential to be a nightmare in the making for ASEAN — an organisation that lists choosing sides between major powers as one of its most prominent concerns.

China Eyes Further Northeast Asian Economic Integration in RCEP
When the Obama administration focused its efforts on a pivot to Asia, the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) served as a key economic pillar of the strategy. The deal was poised to become the largest free trade agreement in the world, encompassing the economies of then-NAFTA, Australia, New Zealand, Peru, and a raft of Asian countries with one notable exception—China. That was arguably the whole intent of TPP: to reduce Pacific Rim and, particularly, Asian economies’ dependence on China and move them closer to the United States.

Under Covid Cover, China Raises Regional Stakes
As other nations struggle to contain the virus China hatched, Beijing makes aggressive moves

China’s box office braces for over US$4.2 billion in losses amid coronavirus shutdown
Film authority chief says outbreak has delivered critical blow to the industry, and it will be forced to make changes   Cinemas have been closed since late January and it’s not known when they will be allowed to reopen

China’s top legislature to open annual session on May 22
Under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at the core, and through the hard work of the whole country and the people, the COVID-19 epidemic prevention and control situation in China is improving steadily and the normal economic and social life is gradually resuming, according to a statement issued by the NPC Standing Committee.

China Sets Date for Congress, Signaling Coronavirus Is Under Control
The Communist Party is eager to use its most important political spectacle to project confidence in the face of economic challenges and foreign criticism.

Alain Gillard
Information Officer
Service Asie Pacifique
Place Sainctelette 2
1080 Bruxelles
Tél 02 421 85 09 – Fax 02 421 87 75
Copyright © 2020 awex, All rights reserved