Books

01.11.17

Taiwan’s China Dilemma

Syaru Shirley Lin
China and Taiwan share one of the world’s most complex international relationships. Although similar cultures and economic interests have promoted an explosion of economic ties between them since the late 1980s, these ties have not led to an improved political relationship, let alone progress toward the unification that both governments once claimed to seek. In addition, Taiwan’s recent Sunflower Movement succeeded in obstructing deeper economic ties with China. Why has Taiwan’s policy toward China been so inconsistent?Taiwan’s China Dilemma explains the divergence between the development of economic and political relations across the Taiwan Strait through the interplay of national identity and economic interests. Using primary sources, opinion surveys, and interviews with Taiwanese opinion leaders, Syaru Shirley Lin paints a vivid picture of one of the most unsettled and dangerous relationships in the contemporary world, and illustrates the growing backlash against economic liberalization and regional economic integration around the world. —Stanford University Press{chop}

The Humble Ballpoint Pen Has Become a New Symbol of China’s Innovation Economy

Josh Horwitz
Quartz
China has grown by leaps and bounds during its quest for greater domestic innovation, but one of its most recent accomplishments is in an area that’s considerably more basic: ballpoint pens.

2016 China-Africa Year in Review

Eric Olander & Cobus van Staden
After years of relatively trouble-free development, 2016 marked a turning point in the China-Africa relationship, amid turbulent changes in the global economic and political order. China increased its deployment of combat troops to the continent,...

Conversation

01.10.17

Can Beijing’s Ivory Ban Save the Elephants?

Eric Olander, Peter J. Li & more
On New Year’s Eve, Beijing announced it will ban the ivory trade in China, potentially shutting down the world’s biggest ivory market. Why did Beijing decide to curb the ivory trade? Will it put enough muscle behind it to enforce the decision? What...

China Probes Bitcoin Exchanges amid Capital Flight Fears

Gabriel Wildau
Financial Times
Investors in the cryptocurrency say they doubt it is being used to transfer large amounts of cash out of China.

How Chinese Super App WeChat Plans To Lock Out Foreign App Stores In China

Yue Wang
Forbes
Since its launch on January 21 2011, WeChat has established a solid track record in pushing forward big game changing innovations within China’s mobile ecosystem.

Alibaba Looks to Bricks and Mortar With Bid for Mall Operator in China

Amie Tsang and Paul Mozur
New York Times
Alibaba is pushing further into the very sector that it helped to disrupt with a $2.6 billion bid for Intime Retail, a department store and mall operator in China.

McDonald’s China Operations to Be Sold to Locally Led Consortium

Amie Tsang and Sui-Lee Wee
New York Times
McDonald’s said on Monday that it would sell its businesses in mainland China and Hong Kong for $2.08 billion to Citic, a state-owned conglomerate, and the Carlyle Group, a private equity firm.

China Is Mad About Hollywood Remakes

Lillian Lin
Wall Street Journal
Aiming to crack new frontiers in China, Hollywood studios are turning to something familiar: established American films and TV series that can be remade for Chinese audiences.

How a China Crackdown Caused Bitcoin’s Price to Plunge

Geoffrey Smith
Fortune
The value of the cryptocurrency bitcoin is melting down Thursday, having dropped 20% against the dollar by midday Eastern Time in only two hours of frantic trading.

Apple Removes New York Times App in China

Benjamin Haas
Guardian
Company says it will not offer news site in app store because it has been told by Beijing it is in ‘violation of local regulations’

How Chinese Entrepreneurs Can Help Trump ‘Make America Great Again’

Edward Tse
South China Morning Post
Edward Tse says Chinese investment and job creation are just what the US economy needs to sharpen its edge, not isolationism and trade wars

China’s Electric Vehicle Strategy Paved With Potholes

Anjani Trivedi
Wall Street Journal
By the numbers, China looks like it’s on the way to dominating the global electric car industry. But

China Vows to Curb Record Spending on Football Transfers

Tom Hancock
Financial Times
China’s top sports administrator has vowed to cap spending by football clubs, accusing them of burning money and paying excessive wages to foreign players.

China Inc.’s Large Dollar Debts Fuel Beijing’s Efforts to Curb Yuan Plunge

Ling Ling Wei
Wall Street Journal
The large pile of foreign debt owed by Chinese companies, from state-owned banks to airlines, is giving added impetus to Beijing’s efforts to keep the yuan from falling too steeply against the rallying dollar.

Obama Got Tough on China. It Cost U.S. Jobs and Raised Prices

Patrick Gillespie
CNN
Protect American jobs by getting tough on China. That's the underlying idea behind President-elect Donald Trump's threat of a 45% tariff against China as a ploy to bring jobs back to America. Before pursuing that strategy, however, Trump...

Chinese Access to U.S. Semiconductor Industry May Be Curbed

Ian Talley
Wall Street Journal
The Obama administration is finalizing a study that could lead to restrictions on Chinese investment in the U.S. semiconductor sector.

China Should Set More Flexible GDP Growth Target in 2017: Central Bank Adviser

Reuters
China should set a more flexible economic growth target this year to create more room for reforms, a central bank adviser told the official Xinhua news agency, suggesting a range of 6.0 to 7.0 percent versus 6.5 to 7.0 percent in 2016. China has...

Conversation

12.30.16

Rex Tillerson at State: What Will He Mean for U.S.-China Relations?

Barbara A. Finamore, Shen Dingli & more
On December 13, President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team announced the selection of ExxonMobil Chief Executive Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. We asked ChinaFile contributors to respond to the choice with a specific focus on how Tillerson...

China’s Film Fever Cools

Wayne Ma and Erich Schwartzel
Wall Street Journal
China’s highflying box office got a reality check in 2016, as cutbacks in discounted tickets led to a sharp decline in cinema-revenue growth

While the Rest of the World Retreats, China Expands Investments in Arab World

Eric Olander and Cobus van Staden
Huffington Post
As chaos consumes large portions of the region, Beijing is sending in cash

How China Built ‘iPhone City’ With Billions in Perks for Apple’s Partner

David Barboza
New York Times
A hidden bounty of benefits for Foxconn’s plant in Zhengzhou, the world’s biggest iPhone factory, is central to the production of Apple’s most profitable product

U.S. Charges Three Chinese Traders With Hacking Law Firms

Sara Randazzo and Dave Michaels
Wall Street Journal
Indictment says the traders bought shares of at least five publicly traded companies before announcements that the firms would be acquired

China’s Markets are Tamed— but Not Tempting

Anjie Zheng
Wall Street Journal
The roller-coaster ride may be over, but global investors say that still hasn’t made China attractive for 2017

Bike-Sharing Revolution Aims to Put China Back on Two Wheels

Top Phillips
Guardian
From Shanghai to Sichuan, schemes are being rolled out to slash congestion, cut air pollution – and spin a profit

The 10 Largest Investments in China This Year

Eva Xiao
Tech in Asia
In the first half of 2016 alone, investors poured US $37 billion into Chinese startups: Didi Chuxing, Ant Financial, and Meituan-Dianping top the list

As China Pivots, Trump Risks Fighting an Old War

Andrew Browne
Wall Street Journal
Incoming U.S. administration highlights trade retaliation as Beijing shifts to a form of high-tech protectionism

China Resumes Ties with São Tomé, Which Turned Away from Taiwan

Associated Press
New York Times
Beijing suspended its relationship with São Tomé in 1997 after the African island nation established diplomatic ties with Taiwan

The New Scramble for Africa: How China Became the Partner of Choice

Richard Poplak
Guardian
In 2014 alone China invested £56 billion in African infrastructure. But is this colonialism in another guise?

Taiwan’s President to Visit U.S. Despite Objections from China

Guardian
Planned trip causes speculation in Washington and Taiwan that Tsai Ing-wen may meet Donald Trump in person

China Weighs Response to New U.S. Trade Foe

Mark Magnier
Wall Street Journal
Beijing considers retaliatory steps after Trump appoints China trade skeptic Peter Navarro

The Trouble With Trumps Dangerous Instincts on China

Jiayang Fan
New Yorker
The President-elect has shown that his instinct is to turn the world’s significant bilateral relationships into frighteningly spectacular reality TV

“Brutal, Amoral, Ruthless, Cheating”: How Trump’s New Trade Tsar Sees China

Tom Phillips
Guardian
Peter Navarro has been picked to lead US trade and industrial policy – a move that may upset Beijing

China’s Millennial Consumers: What Victoria’s Secret Got Wrong, and Nike Got Right

Helen Wang
Forbes
Chinese millennials are conflicted between their national pride and their love for western brands

Bring Back Jobs from China? In Shenzhen, They Aren’t That Worried

John Lyons
Wall Street Journal
As Trump presses companies on U.S. manufacturing, the city that became the globalization poster child has learned to adapt to economic shifts

Could Jane Zhang Become China’s First Global Pop Star?

Grace Tsoi
BBC
Zhang's latest single breaks the mould of China's pop industry and could help her become its first global superstar...

Books

12.20.16

The Beautiful Country and the Middle Kingdom

John Pomfret
From the clipper ships that ventured to Canton hauling cargos of American ginseng to swap for Chinese tea, to the U.S. warships facing off against China’s growing navy in the South China Sea, from the Yankee missionaries who brought Christianity and education to China, to the Chinese who built the American West, the United States and China have always been dramatically intertwined. For more than two centuries, American and Chinese statesmen, merchants, missionaries, and adventurers, men and women, have profoundly influenced the fate of these nations. While we tend to think of America’s ties with China as starting in 1972 with the visit of President Richard Nixon to China, the patterns—rapturous enchantment followed by angry disillusionment—were set in motion hundreds of years earlier.Drawing on personal letters, diaries, memoirs, government documents, and contemporary news reports, John Pomfret reconstructs the surprising, tragic, and marvelous ways Americans and Chinese have engaged with one another through the centuries. A fascinating and thrilling account, The Beautiful Country and the Middle Kingdom is also an indispensable book for understanding the most important—and often the most perplexing—relationship between any two countries in the world. —Henry Holt{chop}

China to Review Film Limits as Box Office Growth Slows

Lisa Richwine and Adam Jourdan
Reuters
China's box office is set to end the year with its smallest growth in a decade...

Mooted $75 Million Oscar Trade Sets Up Record China Soccer Spend

Tariq Panja
Bloomberg
Chinese teams set to continue soccer spending spree in window; Spending comes amid warning from Communist Party newspaper

President Obama Says Donald Trump Should Deal Cautiously With Taiwan, China

Carol Lee
Wall Street Journal
President warns successor to think through the consequences of his actions

Where Trump Does (and Doesn’t) Have Leverage with China

Thomas Hout
Harvard Business Review
Trump must keep his trade demands on Beijing specific and legitimate. The question is, does he have the discipline?

Heralding Social, Financial Change, China Aims Blow at Iron Rice Bowl

David Stanway
Reuters
China has ordered state firms to smash the decades-old system of providing cradle-to-grave welfare support, known as the country's "iron rice bowl"...

As Trump Tweets, China Quietly Weights Options to Retaliate

Ting Shi, Nick Wadhams and David Tweed
Bloomberg
China’s leaders are biting their tongues as U.S. President-elect Trump uses Twitter to rattle relations between the world’s biggest economies

China Central Bank Extends Emergency Loans to Financial Firms

Rachel Rosenthal and Yifan Xie
Wall Street Journal
Extends hundreds of billions of yuan in loans to ease liquidity crunch, continuing debt selloff

Finding Balance in the US-China Relationship

Roncevert Ganan Almond
Diplomat
As Donald Trump ascends to the Oval Office, he must recognize the larger vision required to see clearly at the height of power

When China Bullies Its Neighbors, India Gets More Muscular

Ilaria Maria Sala
Quartz
China’s increasingly rough-handed and assertive foreign policy towards its neighbors is raising India’s diplomatic and economic clout in the region

Taiwan is Both Exhilarated and Unnerved by Trump’s China’s Remarks

Javier Hernandez and Amy Qin
New York Times
What does it mean for one’s homeland to be put on the table by Mr. Trump, in negotiations with China’s leaders, who are not known for making concessions easily?

China’s Economic Policy Under Pressure After Fed Flags New Era

Tom Mitchell, Yuan Yang and Gabriel...
Financial Times
Rising US rates complicate balancing act for Beijing as it faces capital flight

As 'The Great Wall’ Hits Theaters in China, Hollywood is Watching

Erich Schwartzel
Wall Street Journal
Movie industry sees $150 million picture starring Matt Damon as harbinger for future U.S.-China co-productions

GM China Reportedly Under Antitrust Investigation: A Warning for Trump?

Bertel Schmitt
Forbes
The surprising report of an investigation of GM comes suspiciously close to President-elect Trump’s incendiary recent comments on Taiwan

Expensive Foreign Degrees Lose Edge in Competitive Chinese Job Market, Study Finds

Teng Jing Xuan and Wang Mingting
Nearly 70% of Chinese students who returned after studying abroad said they were "unsatisfied" with job opportunities ...

Environment

12.13.16

Chinese Consumers Adopt Greener Lifestyle

from chinadialogue
For the last two years, Helen Ni has hosted low-carbon technology workshops for local kids and their parents. The informal gatherings take place at her ground-floor apartment in the Shanghai suburb of Minhang, close to Jiaotong University, one of...

China’s Richest Man Threat to Trump ’Should Things Be Handled Poorly’

Echo Huang
Quartz
Wang Jianlin says 20,000 American jobs and $10 billion in investment are at stake

China to Set Date to Close Ivory Factories

Karl Mathiesen and Naomi Larsson
Guardian
Preparation is under way in China to bring in a ban on their domestic ivory trade, following a promise made with the US earlier this year

China Stocks Drop as Insurers Face Crackdown

Shen Hong
Wall Street Journal
China’s top securities regulator has accused some big insurers of behaving like ‘barbarians’

Is Latin America of Strategic Importance to China?

Shaheli Das
Diplomat
For China, Latin American countries will be a key part of its bid to influence global governance

If Donald Trump Pushes, How China Could Push Back

Jane Perlez
New York Times
Here are five ways the Chinese could make life difficult for a Trump administration

Beijing Concerned by Trump Questioning ‘One China’ Policy on Taiwan

Josh Chin
Wall Street Journal
President-elect Donald Trump questioned U.S. support for the idea that mainland China and Taiwan are part of ‘one China’

Trump Says China is Not a Market Economy. Here’s Why That is a Big Deal

Chad Bown
Washington Post
In 2001, in China’s view, the U.S. promised it would treat the Asian country as a “market economy” starting in December 2016. Trump has a different idea.