China Press Review – August 22, 2019

Press review

Will Air Belgium Ever Return To China?
Reported by Air Transport World yesterday, Air Belgium is indeed looking at making a comeback in Hong Kong. A spokesperson told ATW that the carrier is committed to operating services to China next summer and that it will be, “continuing to offer ACMI services throughout 2020.” Earlier this month, CAPA’s Blue Swan Daily reported that the CEO of Air Belgium, Niky Terzakis, said the carrier was still targeting a resumption of Hong Kong service in summer 2020. Aviation 24 BE also says that the CEO has noted the airline’s intention to start service to two Chinese destinations in 2020.

Will Air Belgium Ever Return To China?

China’s Growth Is Slowing, but not Because of the Trade War
President Donald Trump has repeatedly defended his tariff hikes on China by saying that they are not impeding US economic growth but are a main reason why China’s growth is slowing. “China is doing very, very poorly,” Trump told reporters recently, referring to its economy. “The tariffs have really bitten into China. They haven’t bitten into us at all.” The Chinese economy is so poor, he asserts, Beijing will soon agree to US terms for a trade agreement. The facts don’t support his claims. Despite the trade war, US imports of goods from China subjected to tariffs have not collapsed. Overall US imports of goods from China in the first half of 2019 are down about 13 percent or $30 billion. This is a drop in the bucket compared with China’s GDP of almost $7 trillion in the first half of 2019. Moreover, in percentage terms, US exports to China have fallen even faster, with the result that the bilateral trade imbalance, the focus of much of the president’s attention, has declined only 10 percent. The analysis here does not take into account the indirect effects of the trade war, including any decline in investment that may have resulted from the trade confrontation. Nor does it reflect the potential long-term adverse effect on China’s growth if the United States continues to restrict access to its advanced technology. But as the trade war grinds on, Trump’s claim that they are easy to win is proving elusive, and his conviction that China’s difficulties will persuade its leaders to capitulate to US demands on trade is looking more and more problematic.

Why there’s no reason to be bearish about China’s slowing economy – just look at the big picture
Those disappointed by China’s economic data need to put the facts in perspective, as higher income levels go hand in hand with lower growth rates Industrialising the rest of China’s huge rural labour force will provide enough momentum for productivity gains in the years ahead

Donald Trump’s trade war tariffs on China failing to bring jobs and manufacturing back to the US
The US president promised tariffs on Chinese goods as part of the trade war would help bring jobs back to the United States But while firms are leaving China, it is the likes of Vietnam, Indonesia, Cambodia, Mexico, and Bangladesh that are benefiting the most

Donald Trump says he’s ‘the chosen one’ to take on China over trade
US president tells reporters his life would be easier if he had not started trade war with Beijing, but says he believes deal is still possible Congressional researchers warned that Trump’s tariffs will reduce US economic output by 0.3 per cent in 2020

Taiwan M&A activity hits 15-year low as US-China trade war rocks business climate
M&A deals so far this year have dropped 42 per cent Transaction value of US$2.5 billion was lowest since 2004

Could Giuseppe Conte’s exit be the end of Italy’s closer ties with China?
Italian prime minister fostered warmer relations with Beijing but his resignation could give a boost to the League party led by China critic Matteo Salvini

China’s free trade zones fail to shine despite Beijing’s desire to lure global investors
The new free trade pilot zones have been unable to match the success of Shenzhen in the 1980s and the Pudong area of Shanghai in the 1990s Government eyes improved policies in Shanghai and Shenzhen as China seeks to integrate further into the global economy

Four Things to Know About How Loans Now Get Priced in China
The central bank wants to liberalize the way commercial banks set interest rates and wants to cut loan rates for companies, which economists from investment bank UBS Group AG described as killing two birds with one stone.

China Seeks to Stabilize Its Swine Fever-Rattled Pork Industry
The country’s Cabinet says it will expedite subsidies to pig farmers and promote large-scale farming to normalize the domestic meat market.

How to Sue a Chinese Company: The 101
What though is the best way to you pursue a legal claim against a PRC company that owes you money or has wronged you in some other way?

How to Sue a Chinese Company: The 101

How Donald Trump’s ego and economic ignorance could tip Australia into recession
Our economic health is much more subject to conniptions in China and the US than before the GFC

After false starts, China reaffirms plans to phase out fossil fuels
China on Tuesday pledged to speed up its move towards battery-powered transportation, replacing the country’s gas-powered taxis, buses, and trucks with new energy models, as a national ban on fossil fuel cars is still on the agenda. This comes two years after China’s central government laid out its plans to become a zero vehicle-emissions country. The statement came at the same time when the ministry in July amended its mandatory NEV policy to rely more on hybrid vehicles as part of its efforts to tackle environmental problems. Beijing is accelerating the move towards all-electric transportation across the country in a bid to control pollution from vehicles, while also aiming to become a world leader in technology innovation with an upscale EV industry. China’s state council said they are committed to tackling pollution issues with the release of a three-year action plan in July 2018, which stated all public buses in major capital cities and economic hubs should be replaced with electric models by 2020, when overall carbon emission will be reduced by at least 15% than five years ago.

After false starts, China reaffirms plans to phase out fossil fuels

US pharmaceutical chiefs and scientists back Chinese researchers living in ‘climate of fear’
A group of around 150 prominent biomedical scientists and pharmaceutical industry leaders in the US has come out in opposition to “recent actions” by government agencies and universities against Chinese scientists working in the United States.

P2P lending platforms feel the pressure as regulators squeeze them out of the market
Pressure on China’s peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms is likely to continue to year-end, analysts say, adding more uncertainty to an already embattled sector. More than half of all companies have been pruned from the market since regulators introduced tougher rules aiming to clamp down illegal and risky lending practices.

P2P lending platforms feel the pressure as regulators squeeze them out of the market

Huawei ranked top private enterprise for fourth straight year by China’s leading state-backed business association, followed by HNA Group
All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce (ACFIC) ranks top Chinese companies annually Huawei has inspired Chinese people during trade war, which may be one reason it topped the list, analyst says

How a Canadian mom became one of Tmall’s top baby brands
By 2016, Canadian entrepreneur Dawn Pottier had spent nine years growing her baby brand, Lulujo, from a single ring-sling carrier made in her native New Brunswick into one of the country’s most successful small businesses. “China’s been the most complex to understand what’s going to work and what’s not going to work,” she says. “But once you learn what’s going to work, it works really well.” Pottier chalks these lessons up to the many she’s learned in business over the past 10 years. She credits staying true to the brand as a guiding principle, along with great partners, a dedicated team and a focus on the products that fit the brand. “It’s just one step at a time. It starts from one town, one province, one country to the rest of the world,” she says.

The solar-powered ‘tree’ that turns the sea into drinking water
Material that generates heat from sunlight could provide self-maintaining water supply on remote islands A Chinese-led international research team has created a “tree” that can generate clean drinking water.

China to Allow Foreign Streaming Services? Not so Fast.
Over the past few days, reports have emerged of a proposal to open China’s market to foreign streaming services. According to Tech Node, Beijing News reported that China would “allow foreign firms to provide … streaming services … by the end of the year”. This would be a radical departure from current policy and quite surprising in light of present US-China relations. Rumors along these lines have been circulating in Beijing (where I live and work) for the past six months or so and it at first looked like a real breakthrough had finally occurred.

China to Allow Foreign Streaming Services? Not so Fast.

US imposes sanctions on suspected Chinese fentanyl producers
Three individuals and two companies are added to US Treasury Department list of entities whose US assets may be frozen US President Donald Trump recently accused Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping of reneging on commitment to crack down on exports of the synthetic opioid

Stocks on the Hang Seng Index face their worst slumps in operating income since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis
Operating income among the 50 stocks on the benchmark Hang Seng Index would drop 19 per cent on average this quarter, according to a Bloomberg compilation of analysts’ forecasts That would make it the biggest contraction since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis

China hopes Donald Trump ‘honours’ earlier hands-off stance on Hong Kong despite latest US trade war link
Commerce Ministry spokesman failed to mention statement linking trade talks between Washington and Beijing with the anti-government protests in the city Trump this week said that a Tiananmen Square-style crackdown in Hong Kong would harm trade talks between China and the United States

Hong Kong’s stock market faces a drought of initial public offerings as valuations take a plunge to among the lowest in Asia
Hong Kong’s average price to earnings ratio is at its lowest in recent years Many companies that have filed for listings in city have put IPO plans on hold

Hang Seng Index takes a hit from bleak earnings outlook as investors worry over impact of protests on economy
On the mainland investors seek refuge in consumer stocks, sending liquor maker Kweichow Moutai above 1,100 yuan for the first time Utilities, property and consumer staples take a hit in Hong Kong

HSBC, Standard Chartered, Bank of East Asia speak up against violence, call for peace as Hong Kong’s protests continue
HSBC, Standard Chartered and Bank of East Asia took out full-page and quarter-page advertisements in several of Hong Kong’s Chinese-language newspapers to call for a return to peace and public order

Hong Kong’s US dollar peg could be a weak link if protests drag on, China scholar warns
Zhou Luohua, vice-president of the Chongyang Finance Research Institute at the Renmin University of China, says the peg could prove to be city’s ‘Achilles’ heel’ The Hong Kong dollar has been pegged at 7.8 to the US dollar since 1983, and has helped the city survive the Asian financial crisis and Sars epidemic

China warns global CEOs: Toe the party line on Hong Kong
This is the new reality for multinational businesses that have long grappled with a thorny question on China: What’s the price of access to Asia’s biggest economy? PwC sent a similar message to staff telling them to avoid disclosing anything about the company on social media platform

Hong Kong protests: What do young people want?
“It takes the military 10 minutes to get to Hong Kong. But it takes us less than 10 minutes to get home,” says David. “We’ll just get on with our summer holiday like how it should be and we’ll just let the economy collapse. “That’s the only way we can win. Because the Chinese economic system really relies on Hong Kong. “If we burn they’ll burn with us.”

Hong Kong billionaire gives Xi powerful advice in cryptic ad
Don’t over pick the melons, Li Ka-shing cautions, citing Tang dynasty poem

China urges foreign media to ‘help right public opinion wrongs’ on Hong Kong protests
Foreign ministry’s information department sends letter and ‘evidence of overseas interference’ to dozens of overseas news outlets Letter says foreign media have an important role to play in guiding ‘misled’ public opinion on the city

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