EconoMonitor

Economics Blog Aggregator

    Asia

  • East Asia Forum

    2015 is the year of Chinese cyber power

    Author: Greg Austin, EastWest Institute In February 2014 Chinese President Xi Jingping declared his intent to do everything necessary for China to become a cyber power. Since then Xi and his government have been hyperactive on all relevant fronts: political, legal, economic, organisational and diplomatic. The Chinese leadership’s attention became even more focused on cyber issues in May 2014 when the United States indicted five Chinese military personnel for cyber espionage involving commercial secrets of US-based corporations. But, as documented in my 2014 book Cyber Policy in China, Xi’s cyber focus had been decades in the making. China has been struggling since 1983 to overcome its technological backwardness for the information economy and, since around 2000, for...more

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  • East Asia Forum

    Bougainville looks towards the referendum at 2015 election

    Authors: Kerryn Baker and Thiago Cintra Oppermann, ANU Bougainville went to the polls in May 2015 for the third Autonomous Bougainville Government election since the Bougainville Peace Agreement was signed in 2001. The election was a significant political milestone for the region, marking the beginning of a five-year window in which a referendum on independence is scheduled to be held. It also saw the first woman member of the House of Representatives to be elected in an open seat, Josephine Getsi of Peit constituency. Elections were held for the seats in the House of Representatives and for the presidency of the Autonomous Region of Bougainville. In the house there are 33 open seats, three seats reserved for women, and three seats reserved for ex-combatants. Each vote...more

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  • East Asia Forum

    Why fears over the Australia–China FTA are overblown

    Author: James Laurenceson, ACRI After 10 years of negotiations and the official signing in June 2015, the Australia–China free trade agreement (FTA) still isn’t a done deal. A coalition of Australian trade unions is seeking to ‘stop the China FTA’ at the final hurdle, a vote in federal parliament. The union’s main claim is that the FTA locks out Australian workers by making it easier for Chinese companies investing in Australia to import Chinese labour. In response, the Australian Labor Party opposition leader, Bill Shorten, has committed the party to ‘fight’ to amend the agreement. Of course, to do so after it has been signed would amount to reopening negotiations. This would be an unprecedented step that would open up the possibility of China also se...more

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    Author: Nidhi Aggarwal

    Self trading is not synonymous with market abuse, 29 July 2015. The changing landscape of equity markets, 10 July 2015. What does algorithmic trading do to market quality?, 1 September 2014. What role is played by commodity futures in India?, 10 September 2014. Concerns about individual investors on the Indian equity derivatives market, 29 July 2014. ...more

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    Self trading is not synonymous with market abuse

    by Nidhi Aggarwal, Chirag Anand, Shefali Malhotra, Bhargavi Zaveri. 1   Introduction Orders that match with each other with no resultant change in the ownership are termed as self-trades. Lately, there have been increased concerns regarding self-trades in equity markets in India. With no genuine trading intent, these trades are seen as manipulative in nature, aimed at artificially pumping up the turnover to portray a false picture of liquidity. Self-trades are prohibited under the present law, and SEBI has punished several firms on this score. In this article, we argue that there are some kinds of self-trades which do not constitute market abuse. With no manipulative or fraudulent intent, a trading firm can hit its own bid or offer. Penalising firms in such si...more

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  • Health Intel Asia

    Is China’s Senior Housing Ready for Institutional Investment?

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  • Health Intel Asia

    How can foreign healthcare service providers get a bite of China’s medical insurance plans?

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  • China Matters

    US “Honest Broker” Zombie Ready for Its Dirt Nap…”Anti-Submarine Warrior” Primps for Its Close-Up

    Assistant Secretary of State Danny Russel spoke at the CSIS South China Sea Conference on July 20, 2015.  He made news by declaring that the United States is not neutral in some issues pertaining to the South China Sea.The money quote came in reply to a question from Wu Shicun, the PRC representative at the conference:On the first issue of neutrality, I appreciate the opportunity to clear up what seems to be an almost ineradicable perception of the Chinese.  We are not neutral when it comes to adherence to international law.  We will come down forcefully on the side of the rules.  Cue the triumphant hooting from the China hawks, who were well represented at the conference and urging the United States to “draw a line in the sea”.  And s...more

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  • Health Intel Asia

    Build a Sustainable Relationship with a Chinese Real Estate Developer: Here’s How

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  • Ajay Shah's blog

    Indian Financial Code v1.1 is out

    When the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission (FSLRC) produced the draft Indian Financial Code (IFC) in March 2013, the Ministry of Finance put it out for public review and comments. This version is informally termed IFC v1.0. Hundreds of comments were received on this first draft. Justice Srikrishna and his team worked on these comments and have come out with a revised draft Indian Financial Code. This is informally called IFC v1.1. Today, the Ministry of Finance has put this revised draft out for public review and comments. IFC v1.0 was the result of a thorough and careful process. Even though enormous time and effort was put into it, with the benefit of hindsight, it had numerous blemishes. With the benefit of hindsight, I feel that within IFC v1.0 the...more

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  • China Matters

    Another Shoe Drops in the Turkish “Passports for Uyghurs” Case

    Evidence keeps accummulating that a clandestine Turkish government program to enable Uyghur emigration from the PRC--for motives either noble, sinister, or both--has turned into a major security cock-up, embarrassment for Turkey, and a serious issue in PRC-Turkish relations.I wrote this on July 11 on the occasion of the forcible repatriation of over one hundred Uyghur men from Thailand to the PRC amid PRC allegations that the Turkish government, in addition to providing diplomatic and consular support to the Uyghurs, had crossed a line by providing fake travel documents:Please note that the PRC Foreign Ministry, as well as Global Times, were already raising the passport issue at the beginning of 2015.  First the PRC employed the polite fiction that some profit-min...more

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  • China Matters

    Turkey's "Passports for Uyghurs" Scheme Continues Its Messy Public Unraveling

    The year-long tug of war between Turkey and the PRC over several hundred Uyghur detainees in Thailand was finally resolved, Solomonic fashion, by Thailand sending 170+ women and children to Istanbul in early July in a little noticed event, and the deportation of 100+ Uyghur men to the PRC this week, which has occasioned much public ballyhoo, some nasty incidents inside Turkey, and toothless (and, I expect somewhat less than wholehearted) official execration by the US and the EU.A most interesting sidebar to the Thailand story has been the wheels coming off the reckless Turkish passports-to-Uyghurs scheme.To humblebrag here, I was one of the few to note and write about over the last few months, starting in February and here, and here in April, as well as my recent epic ...more

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  • North Korean Economy Watch

    Production at Kaesong Industrial Complex up in 2015

    According to Yonhap: The value of production made at an inter-Korean industrial park rose 26 percent in the January-April period from a year earlier despite a drawn-out row sparked by North Korea’s unilateral wage hike, government data showed Thursday. The value of production at Kaesong Industrial Complex in the North reached a combined US$186 million in the first four months of the year, compared with $148 million a year earlier, according to the Unification Ministry. In particular, the production at the park rose 21.8 percent on-year to $51.1 million in March and gained 19.7 percent to $50 million in April, when a wage dispute between the two Koreas heightened. … In a separate report unveiled in April, the ministry said that the volume of inter-Korean tra...more

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  • North Korean Economy Watch

    DPRK’s 2015 drought (UPDATED)

    Pictured above in Google Earth: (Top) Lake Yongphung 2014-4-7 (Bottom) Lake Yongphung 2014-9-12 UPDATE 23 (2015-7-15): Writing in 38 North, Randall Ireson asks if the drought is over… After a month of concern, DPRK farmers have received substantial rains in the last few days, which will at the very least break the current drought. Except for Sinuiju on the Chinese border, weather stations in the western farming region have reported between 3.5 and 7.5 inches of rain between July 10 and 14, with similar amounts falling in Kangwon province. This is very good news, and will provide adequate moisture for the main crops for the immediate future. The next week is expected to be dry, but another smaller weather system is expected over the weekend. If rainfall for the...more

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  • North Korean Economy Watch

    DPRK emigration numbers in 2015

    According to Yonhap: The portion of female North Korean defectors topped 80 percent this year, government data showed Sunday, apparently because North Korean women are under less severe scrutiny by the communist country. The number of female North Koreans who came to the South reached 444 in the January-May period, accounting for 83 percent of the 535 North Koreans who came to the South, according to the unification ministry. The data was compiled tentatively as the government’s background checks for North Korean defectors have not been completed, it said. Around 30,000 North Koreans have defected to South Korea in search of freedom so far. Since the portion of female North Korean defectors topped the 50 percent mark for the first time in 2002, the weight has bee...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    The June 4th Incident

    Allow me to emerge from my self-imposed hibernation to comment briefly, as I have done nearly every year in this blog’s 13-year history, on what happened in the streets around Tiananmen Square and in other Chinese cities on June 4th, 1989. I had just moved to Phoenix in the Spring of 1989 for a new job, and for the first time I could afford cable television. CNN’s coverage of the demonstrations in China transfixed me as I watched the entire drama unfold. I remember watching amazed as the students carried out the “Goddess of Democracy,” and as thousands of others — not only students but working people, even police officers — joined the demonstrating masses. I had no particular interest in China at the time, but was riveted to my TV set...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    Peter Hessler’s China Daily “article”: how low can they go?

    Now this is chutzpah: China Daily asked author Peter Hessler to participate in a Q & A with his friend and translator Li Xueshun comparing aspects of Egypt and China (both countries where Hessler has worked as a New Yorker correspondent). China Daily then had the nerve to take Hessler’s replies and shape them into what looks to the reader like a bylined article by Hessler. Li’s replies were totally removed. From Hessler’s Facebook page: [I]t omitted crucial parts, including the most important point: that I believe it’s harder to make a political change in China, where the system is deeper rooted than in Egypt, and thus the flaws are also more deeply rooted. I said that this is the reason why the current anti-corruption campaign will be a failure...more

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  • The Peking Duck

    Is it a police state?

    The best post I ever wrote (and I realize that’s not saying very much) is this one. Its simple point is that underneath a veneer of happiness, prosperity and optimism there can lurk a much darker and more dangerous side. People can be content and appreciate their government while being oblivious — willfully or not — to what it is going on beneath the surface. There have been a rash of articles in recent months of a severe crackdown in China on civil rights lawyers, professors, journalists and activists. A story from yesterday drove this home: As the year came to a close, at least seven prominent Chinese human rights lawyers rang in the New Year from a jail cell. Under President Xi Jinping, 2014 was one of the worst years in recent memory for China’s ...more

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    Foxconn Moving Direct to Consumer

    I remember having conversations years ago about what Foxconn would do going forward, and whether or not they would be happy as the manufacturer to brands.   The WSJ article, Amid Margin Squeeze, Foxconn Designs Its Own Fate, puts this question to rest. Recently, the $130-billion-a-year in revenue company has ventured into handset accessories under its own brand, and sales and distribution of mobile phones. It also plans to offer telecommunications services in Taiwan. For me, this has always been a bit of a no brainer.  Foxconn has an amazing amount of talent in the firm that is not just managing the supply chain and assembling gadgets for their customer, but have for years also been bringing designs to the brands that they feel would sell well in the market. Partner ...more

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    Bites of China. Finally a Show Worth Watching!

    A couple of weeks back, while riding the G train back from Nanjing, something caught my eye.  An advertisement by CCTV for what I believe could be one of the best produced shows China has put together.  At first, I had no idea what the advertisement for, but what was clear was that it was celebrating the various food flavors of China, and those who are tilling the fields and preparing the dishes. The show is called Bite of China, and I cannot recommend it enough. Sure, China is known for its fair share of food failures, including recycled oil, but watching this show has restored a bit of my love for the flavors here.  Flavors that were actually the basis for one of my earliest posts, and have provided a never ending hunt for me and my wife as we look to try new thin...more

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  • All Roads Lead to China

    What Do China’s Millennials Want ?

    For a number of years, I had it pretty good.  I had a number of teams that were under me, were stable, and were producing.  It was at a time when a lot of questions were being asked about the post 80s generation in China, but for whatever reason I was immune. But, those days are over, and just yesterday I had another millennial go AWOL on me.  So, it was perhaps interesting timing that CNBC put up the article Millennials may be more like boomers than we realize highlighting how several studies point to a generation that is looking for meaning in their job, in their company, and for balance: A new study from Deloitte also found differences in workplace attitudes between millennials and older generations, saying that the former “want to work for organizations tha...more

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  • China Rises: Notes from the Middle Kingdom

    Postcards from the National People's Congress

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    Twins!

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  • ChinaBizGov

    China's Green Car Sales in 2012

    Just a few years ago, pretty much everyone (except Chinese auto industry insiders whom I interviewed) thought China was about to take ownership of the global green car market. (Here's just one example from the excitable Tom Friedman of the New York Times.)In 2009 China's industrial planners announced plans to have 500,000 green cars ("New Energy Vehicles" or "新能源汽车" -- a combination of electrics and hybrids) on Chinese roads by the end of 2011. That obviously didn't happen, so last year, that same target of 500,000 was pushed out to 2015.So how did green car sales fare in 2012? Overall, hybrids plus electrics grew a respectable 52 percent.So while sales grew pretty well in percentage terms, it is clear that overall numbers are still inconsequential when you co...more

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    What Causes Revolutions?

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  • Patrick Chovanec

    Enter the New Year

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  • China Rises: Notes from the Middle Kingdom

    China, school violence and official reaction

    I wrote yesterday about growing questions in China about the differences between the U.S. reaction to the tragedy in Newtown and that of the tragedy in Henan Province, where, on the same say as the shooting in Connecticut, a man stabbed and slashed 23 students at a primary school. (All survived in Henan, where the weapon was a knife, not an AR-15.) As a commentary piece in the state-controlled Global Times noted: “The Chinese public has focused on the slow official response and the level of social reflection. Many are furious that while the Americans have started mourning nationwide, the Chinese appear insensitive to the Henan case.” Another story today, carried by China Daily, caught my attention. It describes an example of how profoundly off-key propaganda can ...more

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  • China Rises: Notes from the Middle Kingdom

    Postcard from a snowy Beijing

    The smell of roasting sweet potatoes in a city covered with snow put me in the mood to take a detour on my walk to work today  ...

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  • ChinaBizGov

    Comparing Corruption in China and the US

    Today's WSJ China Realtime reports on a study by a George Mason University economist who attempts to compare corruption in the US and China.  His conclusion is that corruption in America's Gilded Age (1877-1893)* was worse than corruption in China today.Perhaps the conclusion is correct, but the methodology used by this professor is flawed.  US corruption is measured by mentions of corruption in US newspapers 1870-1930.  China corruption is measured by mentions of corruption in US (not Chinese!) newspapers 1990-2011.So he is measuring corruption in two countries by the number of times the newspapers of only one of the countries mentions the word.  Even if the researcher had used Chinese newspapers, the study still would have been flawed due to Commun...more

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  • ChinaBizGov

    GM and SAIC: Trouble in Paradise?

    General Motors (GM) and Shanghai Auto (SAIC) announced in December of 2009 that they were deepening their partnership beyond their joint venture in China.  Together they created a 50:50 joint venture, registered in Hong Kong, for expansion outside of China.  Now that partnership appears to be coming apart.Initially, the plan for the HK JV was for the two sides to work together in India and possibly elsewhere in the future.  (For further insight into this particular deal, please see Chapter 4 of Designated Drivers.) As for the India venture, GM would contribute two existing factories in India, along with its Chevrolet brand, and SAIC would contribute cash -- something that GM had been seriously lacking as it had emerged from bankruptcy earlier that same ye...more

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Aaron Menenberg Policies of Scale

Aaron Menenberg is Foreign Policy and Energy analyst, and a Future Leader with Foreign Policy Initiative. He also co-hosts Podlitical Risk (@podliticalrisk). He is a graduate student in international relations at The Maxwell School of Syracuse University. Previously he has worked at Praescient Analytics, The Hudson Institute, for the Israeli Ministry of Defense, and at the IBM Corporation. The views expressed are his own, and you can follow him on Twitter @AaronMenenberg. He welcomes questions and comments at menenbergaaron@gmail.com.