Milestone for Yuan Marks Rise of China

Wall Street Journal
China for the first time joined the ranks of the most-traded international currencies, underscoring the rise of the world’s second-largest economy and the growth of the global foreign-exchange market.  

China Says Military Strike Against Syria Would Hurt Global Economy

Don Lee
Los Angeles Times
Vice Minister of Finance Zhu Guangyao said estimates from the International Monetary Fund indicate that a military strike would lead to a $10 jump in the price of a barrel of oil, which in turn would cut global economic growth by 0...

Caixin Media

09.10.13

Sober Day Dawns for China’s Baijiu Distillers

Distillers of China’s most popular spirits, baijiu, are sobering up to a business slowdown and tight financing after a decade of outstanding growth.Sales are off and company market values have fallen over the past year, prompting some investors to...

Media

09.06.13

Follow the Money: Who Benefits from China’s One-Child Policy?

When debating China’s one-child policy, China’s domestic media and observers overseas mostly focus on its impact on the population structure or incidences of inhumanity involved in the implementation of the policy (such as forced abortion). Almost...

Caixin Media

09.04.13

China’s Shale Gas Development Goals Just Pipe Dreams

China wants to reap the benefits of a shale gas revolution similar to the one in the United States, but there are many obstacles to this happening, experts say.In the first half of 2013, fifty-six shale gas wells were in the exploratory phase in the...

China’s Coal Supply Will Soon Weigh 40 Percent More Than Earth’s Population

Gwynn Guilford
Atlantic
The country's excessive past investments in coal have produced a surplus, and today, lowered prices mean mining barons are struggling to pay off loans. ...

Across China, Skyscrapers Brush the Heavens

Keith Bradsher
New York Times
China is home to 60 of the world’s 100 tallest buildings now under construction. But the skyward aspirations of Changsha, the capital of Hunan province, have inspired incredulity tinged with hostility. 

Books

09.03.13

China Across the Divide

Rosemary Foot (Editor)
Understanding China’s world role has become one of the crucial intellectual challenges of the 21st century. This book explores this topic through the adoption of three conceptual approaches that help to uncover some of the key complex and simultaneous interactions between the global and domestic forces that determine China’s external behavior. A central assumption of this study is that it is unhelpful to treat the global and domestic levels as separate categories of analysis and that the study of China can be enriched by a recognition of the interpenetrated nature of the domestic and international spheres.The first section of the book concentrates on the role of ideas. It examines Chinese conceptions, at both the elite and mass levels, of the country’s status and role in global politics, and how these conceptions can influence and frame policies. The second section provides evidence of Chinese societal involvement in transnational processes that are simultaneously transforming China as well as other parts of the world, often in unintended ways. The third section assesses the impact of globalization on China in issue areas that are central to global order, and outlines the domestic responses—from resistance to embrace—that it generates. This study adopts a multidisciplinary approach involving scholars in international relations, history, social anthropology, and area studies. It offers a sophisticated understanding of Chinese thought and behavior and illustrates the impact that China’s re-emergence is having on 21st century global order.  —Oxford University Press {chop}

Why China’s Farms Are Failing

Tom Philpott
Atlantic
In the process of emerging as the globe’s manufacturing center, China has severely damaged its land and water resources, compromising its ability to increase food production for a wealthier population that’s demanding ever-more meat. 

Reports

08.27.13

China National Human Development Report 2013

United Nations
China had more urban than rural residents for the first time in 2011. The urbanization rate reached 52.6 percent in 2012, a major milestone with significant implications. In the midst of this urban transformation, China’s leaders have increasingly...

China’s Millionaire Population Grows Less Quickly

Laurie Burkitt
Wall Street Journal
With the world’s second-largest economy in the midst of an extended slowdown, growth in the population of Chinese millionaires has fallen to its slowest pace in five years.

From Outsiders to Innkeepers in China’s Sleepy Countryside

Mike Ives
New York Times
More hotel rooms are being built in China than anywhere else in the world, and a small number of foreign entrepreneurs in rural China are operating boutique hotels in restored properties that have historic charm.

China: Foreign Tourism Falls, and Smog May Be One Reason

Associated Press
Smog was among factors cited in new report showing China, one of the world’s most popular destinations for international travelers, has experienced a significant decline in the number of tourists this year.

Conversation

08.15.13

What Should China Do to Reverse its Tourism Deficit?

Leah Thompson, Damien Ma & more
Recent news stories and industry studies show that fewer international visitors are choosing China as their destination. January-June arrivals in Beijing are down 15% from the same period in 2012 and more Chinese than ever before are spending their...

Media

08.14.13

Don’t Dream Big—Four Vignettes on Social Mobility in Modern China

The New York Times recently ran an article that detailed the struggles of three young college women from low-income backgrounds, raising questions about whether education remains the “great equalizer” in America. How does the picture look in China,...

How China Added $1 Trillion to its Economy by Fudging Data

Tim Fernholz
Quartz
China’s economy could be $1 trillion smaller than it says. A professor at Peking University lays out the case in a new working paper that finds some very strange patterns in China’s official statistics. A professor at...

Too Much, Too Fast: China Sees Backlash From Massive Growth

Jim Zarroli
NPR
At a time when much of the world is mired in economic torpor, China still enjoys enviable growth rates. Yet there’s no question that its economy is growing more slowly these days. 

Infographics

08.12.13

Is China’s Massive Infrastructure Spending Wise or Wasteful?

China leads the world in infrastructure investment. The new roads, new railroads, new skyscrapers, even whole new cities that seem to spring into existence every day leave little doubt that investment has been ambitious. But has it been wise? This...

Pollution Economics

Dirk Forrister and Paul Bledsoe
New York Times
With more than a million people dying prematurely each year from breathing its dirty air, the Communist country is experimenting with a capitalist approach: create incentives so that the market will force reductions in emissions.

How a Beige Book Could Shed Some Light on China’s Shadow Economy

Dan Kedmey
Time
As China grows, the National Bureau of Statistics’ data remain arcane. In efforts to attain accuracy, The Beige Book curates a report based on their online and in-person surveys of more than 2,000 businesses and banks...

Eyeing China, Philippines Gains U.S. Ship in Military Upgrade

Manuel Mogato
Reuters
The Philippines took possession of a former U.S. Coast Guard ship on Tuesday, part of its biggest military upgrade in decades, as a stronger economy allows it to raise spending to counter China’s growing assertiveness in disputed waters.

Caixin Media

08.05.13

County in Shaanxi in a Deep Hole as Mining Bubble Pops

A financial crisis triggered by falling coal prices is brewing in Shenmu County, in the northwestern province of Shaanxi.Construction projects have been halted, universal health care has run into payment problems and many private bankers have...

Books

08.05.13

China Threat?

Lionel Vairon
From the long-term threat of nuclear war between the U.S. and China, to the disappearance of the African elephant due to Chinese demand for ivory, each week brings a new round of critique and denunciation of the risks China poses to the stability of the entire planet. While critics raise a certain number of fundamental questions that bear asking about this nascent superpower, the answers put forth are usually based on ideological or economic considerations. Lionel Vairon systematically challenges these views in this first English language edition of China Threat?With an incisive review of China’s economic strategy, deployment of resources, national defence, political reform, ethnicity and religion, terrorism, and developments in human rights, Vairon amply demonstrates that China poses no threat to the world. On the contrary, China Threat? shows that China’s peaceful rise should be a matter of positive news across the globe.  —CN Times Books {chop}

“‘Homeless for a Month’: U.S. Interns in China Learn to Reset Expectations

Rob Schmitz
Marketplace
Rowland Madson traveled 10,000 miles around the planet so that he could greet visitors at the front gate of a Chinese amusement park. His job was to wear a candy cane striped suit and collect entrance tickets from Chinese tourists.

China Stocks World’s Worst Losing $748 Billion On Slump

Richard Frost, Weiyi Lim
Bloomberg
Four years after China's growth helped lead the global economy out of a recession and won the admiration of luminaries from billionaire George Soros to Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz, the nation’s stock...

Conversation

07.30.13

Is Business in China Getting Riskier, Or Are Multinationals Taking More Risks?

Arthur R. Kroeber, David Schlesinger & more
Arthur Kroeber:The environment for foreign companies in China has been getting steadily tougher since 2006, when the nation came to the end of a five-year schedule of market-opening measures it pledged as the price of admission to the World Trade...

Myanmar-China Gas Pipeline Goes Into Operation

Global Post
As well as diversifying China's sources of fuel, by supplying energy to the vast and less developed west the Myanmar-China gas pipeline could help Beijing's attempts to promote economic growth there...

Conversation

07.23.13

What Would a Hard Landing in China Mean for the World?

Barry Naughton, James McGregor & more
Barry Naughton:Paul Krugman in a recent post (“How Much Should We Worry About a China Shock?” The New York Times, July 20, 2013) tells us NOT to worry about the impact of a slowing China on global exports, but to be worried, very worried about the...

China Must Deepen Reforms to Meet Economic Challenges

Reuters
The new leadership has signalled it is prepared to tolerate slower growth to move the economy away from export-led growth and towards one driven by domestic demand, with 7 percent annual expansion seen as the bottom line.  

The View From Beijing: The Elusive 'China Threat'

Jonathan Adelman
Huffington Post
China, while rising for over 30 years under a benign Western umbrella, is still several decades away from challenging the West on an equal footing - and it is far from certain that China will ever want to do so except perhaps in East Asia. 

Caixin Media

07.22.13

Liberal Urge Gaining Support for Bank Policy

The orchestra is tuning up for an interest rate liberalization initiative that financial analysts are calling music to their ears.Recent high-level comments and policy statements heard in Beijing have clearly sounded a central government call for...

I.M.F. Says China Needs Reform to Keep Growth Success

Reuters
China needs another round of “decisive measures” to make sure it continues its successful economic growth as its margins of safety are falling amid growing domestic problems, the International Monetary Fund said in its latest report. 

China Slump Ripples Globally

Alex Frangos and Eric Bellman
Wall Street Journal
As China hopes to reshape its economy to be less reliant on construction and heavy industry, and more reliant on consumer spending, the industries that benefited the most from China’s rise are now being hurt while those aimed at Chinese consumers...

Viewpoint

07.10.13

How the Snowden Affair Might End Up Helping U.S.-China Relations

Orville Schell & John Delury
The reason why both Americans and Chinese have become so nostalgic for the great Nixon/Kissinger-Mao Zedong/Zhou Enlai breakthrough in 1972 is because that was the last time that Sino-U.S. relations experienced a dramatic breakthrough. Now, most...

Economists See Further Slowdown in China

Richard Silk
Wall Street Journal
China’s continued slowdown is bad news for the global economy, as the U.S. recovery remains slow and the euro zone is mired in recession. At the same time, with export sales looking weak, Chinese manufacturers have little reason to invest in new...

A Chinese City is Asking Its Companies to Pay Public Sector Salaries Because It Can’t Afford Them

Jake Maxwell Watts
Quartz
Local government debt is now so unwieldy in China that some desperate city governments, such as that of western Ordos, have turned to the private sector for help to pay their employees. 

Reports

07.09.13

Prospects for U.S.-China Trade in Meat Products and Associated Investment Opportunities

Dermot Hayes
Paulson Institute
The rapid growth rate in per capita disposable income in China, coupled with a continued migration of hundreds of millions of new consumers to urban areas, has created challenges for the Chinese crop and livestock sectors. Faced with an increase in...

Caixin Media

07.08.13

Central Bank Raises the Red Flag over P2P Lending Risks

A recent report by the central bank about peer-to-peer (P2P) lending websites in China has shed light on some severe problems in the business for which there is, as yet, little regulation.The original idea for P2P lending websites was that they were...

Ping An of China Said to Buy Lloyds of London Building

Bonnie Cao
Bloomberg
 Ping An Insurance Group Co., China’s second-largest insurer, agreed to buy the Lloyd’s of London building from a Commerz Real AG-managed fund, two people with knowledge of the transaction said.

For Chinese Families, a Journey Cut Short, and With It Their Dreams

Vivian Yee
New York Times
On their way to Bible camp in America, two Chinese teenagers from Zhejiang Province flew through South Korea and into San Francisco International Airport, where their plane skidded and burst into flames. Both died, the only fatalities in the crash...

China Second Quarter GDP to Test Reformers’ Stomach for Slower Growth

Langi Chiang and Koh Gui Qing
Reuters
China's resolve to revamp its economy for the long-term good will be tested this month when a slew of data show growth is grinding towards a 23-year low, with no recovery in sight...

Inside China’s Bank-Rate Missteps

Lingling Wei and Bob Davis
Wall Street Journal
A rare peek into the actions of China’s leaders in a month when a Chinese cash crunch spooked global investors shows a leadership falling short in its struggle to redirect China's economy and also faltering in its efforts to convey its...

Excerpts

07.02.13

Rejuvenation (复兴)

Orville Schell & John Delury
If any of the makers of modern China who agonized over their country’s enfeebled state and dreamed of better times during the past century and a half could have visited Beijing’s Pangu Plaza today, they would hardly believe their eyes. Pangu’s...

Books

07.02.13

Wealth and Power

Orville Schell and John Delury
Through a series of lively and absorbing portraits of iconic modern Chinese leaders and thinkers, two of today’s foremost specialists on China provide a panoramic narrative of this country’s rise to preeminence that is at once analytical and personal. How did a nation, after a long and painful period of dynastic decline, intellectual upheaval, foreign occupation, civil war, and revolution, manage to burst forth onto the world stage with such an impressive run of hyperdevelopment and wealth creation—culminating in the extraordinary dynamism of China today?Wealth and Power answers this question by examining the lives of eleven influential officials, writers, activists, and leaders whose contributions helped create modern China. This fascinating survey begins in the lead-up to the first Opium War with Wei Yuan, the nineteenth-century scholar and reformer who was one of the first to urge China to borrow ideas from the West. It concludes in our time with human-rights advocate and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, an outspoken opponent of single-party rule. Along the way, we meet such titans of Chinese history as the Empress Dowager Cixi, public intellectuals Feng Guifen, Liang Qichao, and Chen Duxiu, Nationalist stalwarts Sun Yat-sen and Chiang Kai-shek, and Communist Party leaders Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping, and Zhu Rongji.{node, 3592}The common goal that unites all of these disparate figures is their determined pursuit of fuqiang, “wealth and power.” This abiding quest for a restoration of national greatness in the face of a “century of humiliation” at the hands of the Great Powers came to define the modern Chinese character. It’s what drove both Mao and Deng to embark on root-and-branch transformations of Chinese society, first by means of Marxism-Leninism, then by authoritarian capitalism. And this determined quest remains the key to understanding many of China’s actions today.By unwrapping the intellectual antecedents of today’s resurgent China, Orville Schell and John Delury supply much-needed insight into the country’s tortured progression from nineteenth-century decline to twenty-first-century boom. By looking backward into the past to understand forces at work for hundreds of years, they help us understand China today and the future that this singular country is helping shape for all of us. —Random House

Caixin Media

07.01.13

Renewed Growth on the New Third Board

The State Council announced on June 19 that it would expand the New Third Board, an over-the-counter (OTC) market for non-listed companies’ shares, to include all small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) nationwide.One of the experts estimated the...

Shadow Banking Threatens China's Economy. But What is it, Exactly?

Ryan Perkins
Atlantic
Last week, the Shanghai interbank offered rate (Shibor), made news around the world when it suddenly spiked at all time high. Expected to lower this rate by injecting cash into struggling Chinese banks, the People's Bank of China instead did...

Crunch Time

Michael Pettis
Foreign Policy
In the months leading up to last week's liquidity crunch, in which the cost of short-term loans in China spiked and roiled global markets, most financial institutions had been lowering their growth forecasts for China. In mid-June, the...

Conversation

06.27.13

Is Xi Jinping’s Fight Against Corruption For Real?

Roderick MacFarquhar, Winston Lord & more
Roderick MacFarquhar:Xi Jinping’s overriding aim is the preservation of Communist party rule in China, as he made clear in speeches shortly after his elevation to be China’s senior leader.  Like his predecessors, he is obsessed with the...

China's Banking Mess: It's the Politics, Stupid

Minxin Pei
Fortune
After the People's Bank of China (PBOC), issued a reassuring statement on June 25 that dispelled investors' worries about the lack of liquidity in China's interbank loan market, Chinese stock markets halted their plunge, and the rates...

Credit Warnings Offer World a Peek Into China’s Secretive Banks

David Barboza
New York Times
Most economists say China’s financial system is not facing huge systemic risks, and that growth could even come in at 7 percent, which would still make it the world’s fastest-growing major economy. But there are mounting concerns here that the good...

Caixin Media

06.25.13

Legal, Economic Reforms Important At Coming Party Session

China’s blueprint for economic reform is finally taking shape. The government has appointed a taskforce to draft the plans, ahead of the third plenary meeting of the 18th Central Committee. With the country’s economy at the crossroads, these plans...

China Stock Market Plunges 5.3%

Julie Makinen
Los Angeles Times
The Shanghai Composite Index fell 5.3% Monday, notching its largest single day drop since August 2009 and hitting its lowest level since December, amid fears that some Chinese banks are facing a liquidity crunch and the overall economy is slowing.

Conversation

06.21.13

How Should the World Prepare for a Slower China?

Arthur R. Kroeber & Patrick Chovanec
Get Ready for a Slower ChinaThe recent gyrations on the Chinese interbank market underscore that the chief risk to global growth now comes from China. Make no mistake: credit policy will tighten substantially in the coming months, as the government...

Books

06.21.13

Why Has China Grown So Fast For So Long?

Khalid Malik
For analysts China presents a conundrum. It is clear that China has made rapid progress, and the landscape of the world is changing due to China’s unique position. Yet for decades, many have questioned this phenomenon, showing concern about cooked data, asset bubbles about to burst, and so on. Yet the Chinese economy has kept growing at a blistering pace, 9-10 per cent annually, and more at times, over a span of almost three decades.Analysing the last 30 years of reforms, this book helps us understand the Chinese growth success, the factors that made this possible, and the lessons that can be distilled from this experience for other developing countries. Arguing that traditional explanations are inadequate, the author applies the “development as transformation” thesis to provide answers to a wide range of questions: Why has China grown so rapidly over such a long time, and what are the country’s prospects in the future? Will it keep growing? Will it in the next few decades actually overtake the US as the largest economy in the world, as some observers have been forecasting, or will it implode as the many contradictions in the economy and society grind it to a halt? This is a unique book in that it is based on years of close interaction with the Chinese leadership, institutions, and society, as well as international organizations in the development community, when the author was posted in China.   —Oxford University Press

Markets Slump Over Fed Exit Plan and China Credit Squeeze

David Jolly
New York Times
Just a day after the Federal Reserve hinted that it could soon begin winding down its bond-purchasing program, investors were unnerved by reports that Chinese banks had become reluctant to lend to one another, causing interest rates in the...

Why India Trails China

Amartya Sen
New York Times
India’s underperformance can be traced to a failure to learn from the examples of so-called Asian economic development, in which rapid expansion of human capability is both a goal in itself and an integral element in achieving rapid growth.

The Chimerica Dream

Pepe Escobar
TomDispatch
Whatever the confusions and difficulties the Chinese leadership faces, Beijing seems to understand the realities behind Washington’s strategic intentions. One wonders whether the reverse applies.

Rupert Murdoch's Split: Divorcing Wendi, China Or Both?

Doug Young
Forbes
News Corp’s recent China pullback could be partly linked to Rupert Murdoch’s divorce, with few major new investments likely in the next 2 years.

What Paintbrush Makers Know About How to Beat China

Adam Davidson
New York Times
Chinese manufacturers long ago wreaked havoc on the U.S. textile, apparel, toy and electronics industries, but the disruption came slowly to the brush business. Companies have employed two strategies to stave off Chinese competition: 1)...