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China’s fertiliser crunch leaves farmers grasping at straws a month before crucial spring application

April 1, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s coronavirus curbs are disrupting the supply of fertiliser to the country’s northeastern breadbasket, just a month before spring planting, and pose a threat to this year’s corn and soybean crops. Farmers typically have fertiliser prepared in early April before applying it to fields later in the month during the sowing processing. But China’s worst outbreaks of Covid-19 since the pandemic began two years ago have triggered strict controls on the movement of people and goods, sharply…

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China manufacturing activity contracts at sharpest rate in 2 years as ‘a variety of factors resonate’

April 1, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s factory activity slumped at the fastest pace in two years in March, as the domestic coronavirus resurgence and the economic fallout from the Ukraine war triggered sharp falls in production and demand, a business survey showed on Friday. The Caixin/Markit manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to 48.1 in March, indicating the steepest rate of contraction since February 2020, from 50.4 in the previous month. The 50-point index mark separates growth from contraction on a…

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China’s financial stability guarantee fund to safeguard against systemic risks to be ready by September

March 25, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will complete its preparation for establishing a financial stability guarantee fund by the end of September with the central bank leading the work, a document published by State Council showed on Friday. Government departments including the National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Finance and China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission will also be involved in preparing to set up the fund, it said. Premier Li Keqiang said in this year’s work…

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Ukraine war: China exporters wary of ‘secondary sanction’ threat for helping Russia skirt alumina ban

March 24, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Russia might look to its giant neighbour to replace Australian alumina supplies cut off by sanctions, but Chinese aluminium smelters need all the feedstock they can get and may be worried about secondary sanctions from the West, industry analysts said. Australia on Sunday imposed an immediate ban on exports to Russia of alumina and aluminium ores, including bauxite, in response to Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine. The move squeezes Russian aluminium giant Rusal, the world’s second largest producer…

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China to ‘relentlessly break evil trends’ of forged data to tackle ‘outstanding problems’ of fraud

March 18, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will step up scrutiny of the country’s statistics agency and tackle the “outstanding problems” of data fraud and falsification, the Communist Party’s anti-corruption inspection unit said on Friday.While the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has “resolutely probed” and dealt with cases violating statistical discipline and laws in recent years, “the problem of statistical data fraud is still relatively prominent,” said a statement from the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection …

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Boeing 737 MAX en route to China for first delivery in 3 years since fatal crashes led to grounding

March 15, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A Boeing 737 MAX jet that took off from Seattle on Monday is en route to the manufacturer’s completion plant in China, an industry source said, in a sign the model is closer to returning to commercial flights after a three-year grounding.Flight tracking websites showed the plane, painted in the livery of Shanghai Airlines – a subsidiary of China Eastern Airlines – was heading to Hawaii.The source, who was not authorised to speak publicly, said it was the first fuel stop of a multi-day journey…

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China will cut interest rates further to stabilise economy, Yu Yongding says

March 14, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will further cut interest rates to stabilise the economy, as shrinking China-US yield spreads will not change Beijing’s monetary policy loosening bias, the China Securities Journal reported on Monday, citing former central bank adviser Yu Yongding.The comments by Yu, an influential economist at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, came as the US Federal Reserve is widely anticipated to hike interest rates later this week amid higher inflation, while some expect the People’s Bank of…

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China’s economy suffers blow as Beijing’s stimulus push fails to jolt construction

February 28, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A widely-anticipated push by China’s government to boost construction to stabilise growth in the world’s second-largest economy has yet to materialise, a blow to hopes that Chinese stimulus would lift global growth early on this year.The Communist Party has made its stimulus goals clear in recent months, pledging to “front-load” pro-growth policies in 2022, pushing early sales of bonds to fund investment and easing curbs on financing for the property sector.The Politburo, the party’s top…

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China’s yuan ‘trading like a safe haven currency’ as Ukraine crisis roils markets

February 24, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The yuan is standing out for its resilience as global markets reel from Russia’s attack on targets across Ukraine.While major stock markets tumbled, and currencies from the euro to the Korean won declined, the yuan is still hovering near a four-year high after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered an operation to demilitarise Ukraine.“Yuan has been trading like a safe haven currency during the Ukraine crisis,” said Khoon Goh, head of Asia research at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group in…

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China plans bigger tax, fee cuts in 2022 to prop up slowing economic growth

February 22, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will unveil bigger tax and fee cuts this year and step up payments to local governments to offset their hit to revenues, Finance Minister Liu Kun said on Tuesday, amid efforts to support a slowing economy.Tax fee cuts will be larger in 2022 than last year’s 1.1 trillion yuan (US$173.68 billion) in reductions, Liu told a news conference without specifying the size of the planned cuts.“This year, the central government will significantly increase the size of transfer payments, especially…

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China population: Beijing adds fertility services to insurance coverage to aid slowing birth rate

February 21, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Beijing will include more than a dozen fertility services in a government-backed medical insurance scheme for the Chinese capital, state media reported on Monday, supporting those seeking to have babies with China’s birth rate at a record low.A total of 16 medical services using assisted reproductive technologies will be covered by the city’s state insurance effective from March 26, in a move to “take proactive fertility support measures”, according to the Beijing Daily.The new reproductive…

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China’s climate stress test in carbon-intensive thermal power, steel, cement sectors highlights default risks

February 18, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s banks face rising default risks as a result of higher climate-related costs in carbon-intensive sectors like thermal power, steel and cement, Liu Guiping, vice governor of the central bank, said in comments published on Friday.The People’s Bank of China completed the first phase of its climate risk stress tests at 23 major banks last year, focusing on the possibility that the three sectors would be forced to pay for their carbon emissions, Liu wrote in the bank’s China Finance…

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China’s zero-Covid policy aids economy, limits ‘destructive power’ of lifting curbs, watchdog says

February 18, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s “dynamic clearance” strategy aimed at minimising coronavirus infections is boosting the economy, not undermining it, the country’s top anti-corruption body said on Friday in response to concerns about the prospects for growth this year.As other countries relax restrictions, China has maintained a zero-tolerance approach, shutting down transmission routes whenever they arise, ordering mass testing programmes and maintaining mask mandates.Some analysts have forecast a decline in economic…

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China urges iron ore traders to reduce inventory, stocks to reasonable levels after Qingdao probe

February 17, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s state planner has told some iron ore traders to release excessive inventory and reduce stocks to reasonable levels, following a joint investigation with the market regulator in Qingdao, one of the country’s biggest iron ore ports.The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said in a statement on Thursday that it and the State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR) have learned of changes of iron ore inventory in Qingdao Port and retrieved a list of companies with rapid…

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China to work with Asian neighbours to grow use of local currencies over US dollar in trade, investment

February 16, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China will work with Asian countries to strengthen the use of local currencies in trade and investment, Yi Gang, the governor of the central bank, said on Wednesday, as part of plans to strengthen regional economic resilience.Recent years’ progress by emerging Asian nations in using local currencies in trade and investment has strengthened the region’s financial safety net against external shocks, Yi told an event of the Group of 20 (G20) grouping.“Emerging markets should improve their…

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US-China monetary policy divergence set to ‘become greater’, will aid yuan stability

February 16, 2022

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Increasingly divergent monetary policies between China and the United States would help rein in an excessive rise in the yuan by reducing foreign money inflows, a former Chinese foreign exchange regulator said on Wednesday.The US Federal Reserve is widely expected to accelerate monetary tightening to tame inflation this year, while the People’s Bank of China needs to use monetary policy tools to stabilise growth.“Therefore Sino-US monetary policy divergence will likely become greater,” Guan Tao…

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