Is China’s ‘new’ strategy of economic self-reliance just a rehashing of an old idea? This long-time China watcher thinks so
China’s ‘dual-circulation’ strategy to reduce reliance on overseas markets dates back to the late 2000s, says veteran China observer Michael Pettis. But boosting domestic consumption and sustaining production will need substantial productive investment, something that will be ‘difficult’, Pettis says. When they talk about internal circulation, they actually mean they need more domestic consumption, and very different types and more productive domestic investment. Finding a substantial amount of productive investment is going to be quite difficult.
China’s economic future is being influenced by nine economists, but what did they tell Xi Jinping this week?
Chinese President Xi Jinping met with nine prominent economists this week to help with the development of the 14th five-year plan for 2021-25 which is due next year Each of the economists has advocated specific policies that could shed light on Beijing’s policy priorities in the years ahead
How can design thinking help ‘reboot’ our post-Covid-19 world to create ‘new normal’ that benefits everyone?
Businesses, governments and civil society look at human-centred, collaborative approach to tackling world’s volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity Experts offer insights into developing prosperous, equitable and sustainable future at Hong Kong Design Centre’s two-day online Unleash! E-Forum
China’s semiconductor drive stalls in Wuhan, exposing gap in hi-tech production capabilities
Construction on a US$20 billion state-of-the-art semiconductor manufacturing plant in Wuhan has stalled due to a lack of funding It’s the latest example of a Chinese chip factory hitting funding problems, underlining how far the nation has to go to boost production capabilities
Why China’s diplomatic push may not be enough to secure EU investment deal
Senior officials are touring various European countries ahead of next month’s virtual summit The two sides are trying to reach an investment treaty by the end of the year, but diplomatic sources say Beijing has yet to address a range of concerns
China-EU investment deal: exit of European trade commissioner adds uncertainty to landmark talks
Amid ongoing treaty negotiations with China, EU trade commissioner Phil Hogan resigned after breaching his country’s coronavirus guidelines Analyst says Hogan was ‘pragmatic, active, familiar with China and talks little on ideological issues’
Facebook allows ads to be served to mainland China users despite a long-standing domestic ban
The social media giant’s ad-buying portal tells businesses they can target specific cities, including Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin Facebook has been blocked in mainland China since 2009
Why China deserves more credit for recovery in global markets
Beijing has largely eschewed the Western playbook of monetary easing and relied on the banks instead to increase liquidity. Its efforts support a rebound in industrial activity that is stabilising the commodities markets and shoring up asset prices
Miners in China work from home using 5G-enabled machinery to do heavy lifting
Work from home for blue collar workers. The technological feat is allowing blue collar workers to work in silos as the world continues to be ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic. CCTV said 5G technology enables workers to remotely control equipment at the mine with precision, owing to the high speed and low latency connectivity. This translates to workers being able to see what they are doing in real-time as they carry out rough but delicate work on site.
A Star Is Born — China EV Sales Report
A star is born in China. And it is not the flashy Xpeng P7 (1,725 units) or BYD Han EV (1,205), but something far more humble. More on that below. The overall Chinese market went back to positive numbers in July (+9% year over year), with plugin vehicles faring much better, growing 48% last month, to 95,000 units, a new year best. Full-electric vehicles (BEVs) jumped 65%, to 75,000, while plugin hybrids grew a shy 5%, to 20,000. Expect the next months to see a confirmation of the growth trend, as July 2019 was the first month with the current subsidy rules.
Fosun’s billionaire chairman, stung by collapse of Thomas Cook, Cirque du Soleil, says missteps inevitable in global strategy
Guo Guangchang, the chairman of Fosun International, said it is inevitable that there are a few missteps along the way in its global expansion strategy Fosun said that its tourism and cultural businesses were affected because of the extensive lockdown measures to contain the Covid-19 pandemic around the world
China’s banks expect biggest profit drop in over 10 years
Faster provisions against pandemic loan losses seen cleaning up balance sheets
Bitcoin ads bash banks as fears mount over sanctions restricting access to US dollar payment system
Recent adverts in Hong Kong’s Apple Daily newspaper, international media outlets and Western broadcasts encourage investors to shun banks Cryptocurrency supporters say one advantage is that it is not subject to government pressure, but critics point to its use in illegal activities
Chinese Consumers Could Boycott Apple If US Bans WeChat: Ministry Warns
Chinese consumers could boycott Apple if the United States bans WeChat, China’s foreign ministry spokesman warned Friday, as the clock ticks down on a US order to block the popular social app.
China ‘Kills’ Luxury: The Coronavirus May Have Changed Upscale Buying Forever
It looks like we can say good-bye to one old reliable pre-pandemic global trend. The days of China buying up all that bling are certainly over for now. If you’re a Louis Vuitton or a Burberry or TAG Heuer, it’s time to mine for new customers.It was less than 12 months ago when Bain & Company put out this report on the luxury goods market. Here was their forecast at the time:“Personal luxury goods would see sales growing at an annual rate of 3% to 5% through 2025, with that market size going from $310 billion in 2019 to as high as $425 billion in five years. By 2025, Chinese consumers will make up 46% of the global market — up from 33% in 2018 — and they will make half of their purchases at home in China — up from 24% in 2017.” Here’s what that market looks like now. Pick a spot, and it’s pretty lousy thanks to the drop in the Chinese demand and the pandemic which began in Wuhan late last year.
China coronavirus investigation team and date of visit still to be decided
International experts will visit Wuhan, UN agency confirms, but group is still being assembled July advance party spent two weeks in quarantine and did not visit the central Chinese city where first cases reported
Thousands arrested for ‘virus-related crimes’ in China
Nearly 5,800 people suspected of killing health workers, selling defective medical equipment and lying about their travel history have been arrested in China for epidemic-related crimes since January, the state prosecutor’s office said. One case involved a shopper who beat another customer to death for not wearing a mask in a supermarket.
The Big China Disaster That You’re Missing
Beijing is failing to keep up with the more frequent and devastating floods that climate change is bringing. The world’s largest dam is under pressure in the massive flooding that’s wiping away billions of dollars of value in China. The predicament symbolizes a looming crisis for Beijing. Climate change is bringing more frequent and intense deluges that threaten the economic heartland, and infrastructure defenses installed with the disasters of previous eras in mind can’t keep up. There’s very little time to prepare for what’s coming.
When China Reporters Can’t Report from China
“This is a business model for them. They don’t really care about the factual value of the content,” said Fang. “Self-media is more tabloid than tabloid.” Of greater harm to Chinese audiences is the diminution of foreign media’s capacity to report on Chinese domestic grievances. Chinese media outlets remain abundantly capable of reporting on domestic political and social controversy, as evidenced by the proliferation of first-rate domestic coverage in the wake of the Wuhan coronavirus outbreak. However, they are often forbidden by the Chinese government from doing so.
Trump attacks opponent Biden’s China stance in acceptance speech
US president accepts Republican Party nomination before packed, mostly maskless crowd on White House lawn ‘America First’ mantra features heavily in address attacking Beijing on range of issues
US sanctions on Chinese firm at centre of South China Sea island-building ‘could ripple across Asia’
China Communications Construction Company’s massive regional presence means the censure will impact multiple governments and companies, diplomatic observers say CCCC is involved in 923 projects in 127 countries, including Malaysia’s East Coast Rail Link, seen as one of the jewels of the Belt and Road Initiative
Beijing claims it has warned a US destroyer in South China Sea after missile launch
The USS Mustin sailed near the Paracel Islands in the disputed waterway after Chinese missile launch in the region Deployment intended to keep critical shipping lanes ‘free and open’, American Pacific Fleet says
China wary of image crisis after Galapagos fishing scrutiny
Worldwide attention on the hundreds of distant-water vessels hovering outside Ecuador’s EEZ has amplified calls for China to better monitor its fleet
Europe and China must keep conversation going: Merkel
Europe and China should keep the conversation going on topics on which they can cooperate, such as climate change, but also on difficult topics on which they do not agree, such as Hong Kong, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday.
China’s top diplomats in ‘unprecedented’ back-to-back Europe trips amid tensions with US
Politburo member Yang Jiechi is expected to visit Greece, Spain and potentially Portugal next week, according to diplomatic sources He will arrive days after Foreign Minister Wang Yi finishes his tour in an effort to ‘make sure that Europe is a strategic partner for China’, analyst says
Human rights, trade on agenda as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrives in Norway
China says it hopes the trip will inject new life into stalled talks on a bilateral free-trade agreement Wang expected to highlight need for strong multilateral partnerships in Oslo, just four years after a thaw in relations between the two countries
China’s foreign minister warns against giving Hong Kong protesters Nobel Peace Prize
Wang Yi also tries to cast doubt on the origin of the coronavirus Norway is the third leg of his five-nation European tour intended to boost Chinese-European cooperation
SECURITY LAW BRINGS NEW RISKS TO EDUCATION IN HONG KONG AND ABROAD
Hong Kong’s academic freedom and university autonomy have been steady targets for the CCP since at least the 2014 Umbrella Movement protests, when several prominent Hong Kong professors were jailed for participating. In recent years, documented pressure on outspoken and politically active scholars met quick resistance from professors and students, who form an integral part of the city’s once active pro-democracy movement. The July 1 implementation of the National Security Law (NSL) in Hong Kong has expedited Beijing’s long-running crackdown on the region’s freedom of expression and political autonomy, and public schools in the city have since been given new teaching guidelines as curriculum reviews are underway. Much as the city’s independent media outlets are already feeling the direct impact of the law and the chilling effect of its opacity, The Economist reports that its universities are as well:
The Future of China Studies in the U.S.
What is the future of China studies in the United States given this changing environment? How are recent politics in China and in China’s relations with the U.S. likely to alter the mechanics and substance of China studies in the United States? What kinds of changes, if any, should China scholars in the United States consider making in their research and teaching methods? And how might these changes affect the direction of the field as a whole?
Coronavirus: Wuhan whistle-blower’s hospital replaces party chief
Cai Li had faced criticism for the way Wuhan Central Hospital handled the outbreak, but it is not clear whether her departure is linked Hospital employee Li Wenliang was reprimanded for warning colleagues about Covid-19 but was exonerated after his death from the disease
China plans hi-tech supervision of police officers and judges as party tightens grip on domestic security
A new automated system using big data technology will be used to identify procedural violations in investigations, trials and enforcement work Machine learning and computer analysis will be used to check for deviations or abnormalities in verdicts and sentences handed down by judges
Is the CCP losing its ‘Mandate of Heaven’?
China-watchers are still grappling with the wide-ranging implications of the Hong Kong national security law. Has Beijing really abrogated the legally-binding Sino-British Joint Declaration after just 23 of the agreed-upon 50 years? After all, what truly separated Hong Kong from the mainland were the freedoms guaranteed by its Western-style rule of law.With the COVID-19-induced drop in global demand expected to be even worse than after the 2008 financial crisis, the pivotal question is: can China still fully escape the middle-income trap?And given the steep rise of macro and socioeconomic uncertainties in China, will the emphasis on Beijing’s post-1978 ‘social contract’ — individual and national prosperity in exchange for giving up the prospect of political liberties — shift even further from the economic to the nationalist pillar, resulting in intensified border disputes on the Tibetan Plateau, across the Taiwan Strait and in the East and South China seas?To quote former foreign affairs minister Qian Qichen, foreign policy is simply ‘the extension of China’s domestic policies’. Jessica Chen Weiss also recently alluded to this with respect to potentially counterproductive pressures on China, further amplifying popular demand on the Chinese leadership to take tough stances.Chinese leaders see their provocative moves as mostly defensive in nature and tied to their domestic legitimacy. The Trump administration’s expedient and misguided attempt to get Europe and the ‘Quad’ — Australia, India, Japan — into a Cold War with China is based on a serious mischaracterisation of China and its intentions.There is no ideological struggle with a ‘Communist China’ in the classical expansionist sense. In a spiral of confrontation and with bipartisan consensus in the US Congress, even new American leadership after November would find it hard to navigate back towards more manageable China–US competition.
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