China Press Review – January 24, 2019

Press review

To understand why China’s slowdown is looking so ugly, you’ve got to look at what happened to Chinese consumers
China’s economic data show the country is under major strain from attempting to rein in debt.
And it isn’t just corporate profits or the financial sector that are getting hit, weakness in consumer spending has spread across the economy. Part of this is because Chinese consumers have taken on a bunch of debt really fast.

A Chinese economic slowdown is good for the world. In time, it’ll be good for China too
Richard Harris says consolidation after the rapid growth of the 2000s will lower prices and curb interest rate rises, thereby stimulating the global economy. Beijing, too, could use the help to rein in runaway debt and retool the economy

Is China’s 40-Year Boom Coming To An End?
China: Is China’s economic miracle coming to an end? It sure looks that way. Recent data and startling demographic changes portend much slower economic growth down the not-so-silken road to the future. Can China reverse the slide? Maybe not.

Is China’s 40-Year Boom Coming To An End?

What does winning the US-China trade war look like for Donald Trump and Xi Jinping?
For Trump to declare victory he needs China to further open its market to American exports; Xi needs the US to eliminate or sharply reduce tariffs Some say the most the two sides can achieve in the near term is a ‘mini-deal

Goldman Sachs warns that China will struggle to stimulate its slowing economy
It will be tricky for Beijing to calibrate the right dosage of stimulus to prevent a sharp economic slowdown, says economist Andrew Tilton There is a danger that Chinese policymakers could underestimate the size of the risk and not offer enough stimulus

China on track for more growth, Vice-President Wang Qishan tells worried world elite in Davos as he rebukes US ‘bullying’
Globe’s second-biggest economy certain to deliver modest prosperity for its people by 2020, ‘optimistic’ top official says at World Economic Forum Wang told world leaders that they should not ‘interfere’ in other countries’ affairs, and that nationalism, protectionism and populism are to be avoided

China says it can achieve sustainable economic growth
China’s economy can maintain sustainable rates of growth despite global uncertainties, Vice President Wang Qishan said on Wednesday, days after the world’s second-largest economy posted its weakest expansion in nearly three decades.

If China wants to quieten ‘belt and road’ critics, it must meet global investing rules, says former securities watchdog boss
Xiao Gang, former China Securities Regulatory Commission chairman, says belt and road investment built solely on Chinese funds is unsustainable It was his first public speech overseas since stepping down as securities watchdog chief after China’s stock market meltdown

China’s belt and road isn’t like the Marshall Plan, but Beijing can still learn from it
Richard Kozul-Wright and Daniel Poon say China’s Belt and Road Initiative is different from the US post-war recovery programme for Europe, which came with policy conditions and an end date. But Beijing can still learn valuable lessons

Emerging market economies: China
China is one of the largest economies in the world, but it is still considered an emerging market. Learn about China’s economy, its 2019 growth forecast, and how you can take a position on Chinese assets.

Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Thursday. Interviewed by WEF Chairman Klaus Schwab, the conversation centered on the so-called Fourth Industrial Revolution, driven by the rapid proliferation of digital technologies, as well as Zhang’s insights into Alibaba, its culture and how the company is putting artificial intelligence to work for both consumers and merchants. Below are some highlights from the interview.

China’s economy is sweating, how is Alibaba’s CEO so relaxed?
Alibaba’s CEO calmly played down the risks of trade war between China and US China wants its consumers to spend more as global demand for the country’s good wanes Any stimulus to boost consumption in China will benefit Alibaba first

WeChat, Chinese Tourists Fuel Burberry Despite Revenue Slip
Bucking the trend that hit other luxury brands such as Tiffany & Co. late last year, British luxury brand Burberry reported that it saw a return to Chinese tourist spending growth in the UK in the year-end quarter. It did, however, note decreased sales in Japan and Hong Kong partly caused by lower tourist spending, though it did not mention Chinese tourists specifically.

WeChat, Chinese Tourists Fuel Burberry Despite Revenue Slip

China’s Generation Z Teens Spend More and Worry Less Than You Do
Youngsters make up 15% of total household’s spending: survey One-child policy, economic boom has boosted spending ability

China to pass US in retail sales this year: Forecast
Retail sales in China are expected to hit USD 5.64 trillion, an increase of 7.5 per cent over 2018, while Americans are likely to spend USD 5.53 trillion, a 3.3 per cent increase, according to the market research firm eMarketer

American universities blacklist Huawei and other Chinese telecoms under Trump law pressure
Last year’s National Defence Authorisation Act is having a chilling effect on relations between the hi-tech giant and top universities in the US

Job-hopping days are over in China’s tech sector as start-ups feel chill winds of slowing economy
The number of venture capital deals in China dropped 25 per cent year on year to 713 in the fourth quarter Competition for job vacancies has intensified with an average applicants-to-jobs ratio of 32 to 1

Microsoft’s Bing search engine inaccessible in China
US tech giant Microsoft has confirmed that its search engine Bing is currently inaccessible in China.

Chinese censor calls Tencent news app ‘vulgar’
One of China’s leading news apps has been singled out for criticism by the country’s internet watchdog.

No proof that artificial intelligence and automation will take away jobs, says new report
There is no ‘conclusive evidence’ that more jobs are being lost than created, according to think tank the Luohan Academy

Technological revolution could plunge us into another world war, Chinese billionaire Jack Ma warns Davos
Alibaba chief tells World Economic Forum that while technology brings positive changes to the world, we should be alert to its dangers China’s richest man also calls for overhaul of world economic system to ensure more people can share benefits of globalisation

Asia’s Factory Workers in an AI-Driven World
Today in China, technology is removing the need for service staff in the most casual of experiences. Cameras equipped with facial recognition technology are being used in public toilets to ensure that there is “no abuse” of toilet paper. Smart cameras are being used to track and charge cars entering parking lots, eliminating the need for attendants and barriers. Alibaba has announced plans to spend US$15 billion on research into AI, machine learning, and cloud computing. Tencent and Baidu are also spending big to ensure AI leadership. Global management consulting firms McKinsey and PwC have said that AI could add over a percentage point of growth to global GDP annually, boost Chinese GDP by 26 percent in 2030, and transform industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, retail, and finance.

Asia’s Factory Workers in an AI-Driven World

Beijing government to commercialize 5G by 2022
Beijing will commercialize 5G mobile networks in the next five years to cover key areas within the city. According to city authorities, Beijing’s central zone, which includes areas within the Second Ring Road and Tongzhou District, the capital’s new municipal center, will be the first to receive 5G coverage. Beijing Daxing International Airport, which is currently under construction, and venues for the 2022 Winter Olympics are also included.

Briefing: Beijing government to commercialize 5G by 2022

China’s confident and carefree Generation Z spend over US$7,000 a year on luxury goods
Study by research firm OC&C Strategy Consultants shows why luxury brands are dependent on continued splurging by young adults in Asia’s biggest economy

Tencent, NetEase get new video game licences after nine-month freeze, clearing cloud of uncertainty
The State Administration of Press and Publications has now approved a total of 352 new game titles since March last year

Will China take out the axe to fix the slowing property market?
Small steps are being taken at the local level to encourage home buying
Beijing is signalling it thinks property market can be kept stable without big national policy action, experts say

Bing outage in China prompts censorship speculation among netizens
Microsoft’s search engine Bing has been inaccessible in mainland China since Wednesday afternoon, sparking heated public discussions about the fate of the last major Western search platform in China.

Bing outage in China prompts censorship speculation among netizens

If China wants to quieten ‘belt and road’ critics, it must meet global investing rules, says former securities watchdog boss
Xiao Gang, former China Securities Regulatory Commission chairman, says belt and road investment built solely on Chinese funds is unsustainable It was his first public speech overseas since stepping down as securities watchdog chief after China’s stock market meltdown

India and China, two peas in a pod
Analysts frequently describe India–China relations as experiencing periodic bouts of insecurity that threaten the development of closer ties between the two Asian giants. Major sources of insecurity include an entrenched China–Pakistan alliance that may subsume Indian influence in South Asia; mounting maritime, trade and naval competition in the Indian Ocean region; engrained border disputes; and New Delhi’s apprehension about Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative.

India and China, two peas in a pod

Keeping China–Japan relations afloat
The Japanese government lodged a protest with China in December 2018 over Chinese test drilling activities in a gas field near the Japan-claimed median line in the East China Sea. The protest touches on a longstanding controversy over maritime boundary delimitation between China and Japan.

Keeping China–Japan relations afloat

Australian spy novelist Yang Hengjun held in China in state security investigation
The Australian citizen, a former Chinese diplomat, confined in residential detention in Beijing

China’s first womb transplant recipient gives birth to a healthy baby boy
New mum Yang Hua, 26, was born without a uterus but was given one by her own mother in 2015 Baby was delivered several weeks prematurely by caesarean section but weighed in at 2kg

What is socialism like in China?
What is socialism with Chinese characteristics, and is it just capitalism?

Making China Communist Again?
Chinese students are rediscovering Marx and Mao even as the Chinese government becomes less tolerant of any criticism.

US says China’s growing military might is part of a ‘diverse’ threat to its national security
National Intelligence Strategy also identifies Russia and North Korea as risks Earlier US report raises concerns about Beijing’s development of two new stealth bombers, one of which may be able to carry nuclear weapons

Chinese companies offer ‘dating leave’ to single female employees aged over 30
Two companies in China are giving single female employees over the age of 30 an extra eight days of annual “dating leave”.

Alain Gillard
Information Officer
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