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Zhou Xin

Articles by Zhou Xin

China’s rapid GDP growth shows why coronavirus controls must trump reopening economy

5 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s economic growth acceleration in the third quarter confirmed a strong recovery in the world’s second-biggest economy when many other countries are still struggling to balance growth and coronavirus control.The 4.9 per cent gross domestic product growth rate is expected to feed a narrative that China’s way of handling the coronavirus has been effective, and that the country’s governance system is better suited to cope with crises such as Covid-19, especially compared with the United…

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China reports surge in long-term investment inflows despite talk of decoupling from US

8 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows into China surged in September by nearly a quarter compared to a year ago, underlining the confidence international investors have in the world’s second biggest economy long-term prospects, despite threats of decoupling from the United States.FDI inflows into China rose 23.7 per cent to US$14.25 billion last month, according to data released by the Ministry of Commerce on Friday. The growth marked an acceleration from August when China’s FDI recorded year…

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China speeds up draft law against food waste as nation strives to feed 1.4 billion people

8 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s legislature is speeding up its drafting of a national law to discourage food waste, following President Xi Jinping’s order to clamp down on the problem and ensure stable food supply.The Legislative Affairs Commission of the National People’s Congress is pressing ahead with the law, a first for China, and held a symposium with local lawmakers and legal experts this week to talk preliminary clauses, according to the Hebei provincial legislature.Hebei is the first Chinese province to…

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China’s Xi Jinping praises Shenzhen as economic model for country at ‘historic crossroad’

10 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]President Xi Jinping is pinning his hopes on Shenzhen to set an example for the rest of China by renewing Deng Xiaoping’s success of experimenting with the city and applying it elsewhere, which helped turn the country from an economic backwater to the world’s second largest economy.In an hour-long speech on Wednesday, China’s most powerful leader in decades said the country was facing new challenges and called on the city to make “greater contributions” to national prosperity – noting it had …

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China’s yuan rally has just started, and it is thanks to the US Federal Reserve

12 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The yuan’s appreciation against the US dollar in recent days could be a prelude to a long rally for the Chinese currency as it is increasingly being seen as a stable source of value amid unconventional monetary policies by major central banks pushing the global financial system into uncharted territories.The near zero and sub-zero bond yields offered by governments from rich countries are upending conventional theories of value, forcing investors to scramble to defend the value of their…

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What is China’s economic plan to meet Xi Jinping’s vision for ‘socialist modernisation’ by 2035?

16 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A healthy economic growth trajectory is expected to be key to plans for how Xi Jinping’s vision for China to “basically achieve socialist modernisation” by 2035 will laid out at a key meeting at the end of October.Xi’s overriding goal was first uttered in 2017 without specifics, but the fifth plenary session of the Chinese Communist Party’s Central Committee is expected to provide more details about the Chinese leader’s vision and the general approach the government will take to achieve it.A…

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China’s ‘golden week’ consumer spending fails to help Beijing put its best foot forward

19 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]At first sight, scenes from China’s “golden week” holiday at the start of October – traffic jams to and from major cities, massive crowds at tourist sites, and long lines at popular restaurants – seem to indicate a strong consumer spending rebound.The images promoted by state media and widely circulated on social media paint a picture of exuberance and prosperity in the world’s second largest economy.A joyful atmosphere during the holiday in turn helps to shore up consumer confidence and public…

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Jack Ma: China’s entrepreneurs must be ready for a globalised, digitalised world

24 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese entrepreneurs must ready themselves for a digitalised and globalised world and look beyond immediate difficulties, according to Alibaba founder Jack Ma.“Globalisation was led by developed countries and large enterprises in the past, but it will be led by developing countries and small businesses in the future,” Ma told the China Green Companies Summit, an event hosted by the China Entrepreneur Club, on Tuesday.“Anyone with a mobile phone can run a globalised business … in the last three…

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China’s population crisis: Beijing must address its falling births and ageing workforce

26 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A crisis is looming for China. The country’s workforce is greying and its population will soon begin shrinking – if it is not already. This is set to create big problems for the world’s most populous country.While there are signs China’s leadership is starting to take the demographic “grey rhino” seriously, Beijing has not yet grasped the enormity of the situation, taking it for granted China’s population of 1.4 billion is too big and sticking to a family planning policy that essentially…

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China’s ‘unreliable entity list’ sounds dire, but that doesn’t mean it will bite foreign firms any time soon

September 21, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has finally released details of how its “unreliable entity list” will be implemented, giving Beijing a new legal weapon to sanction foreign businesses it dislikes.On the surface, the regulation sounds dire. Its sweeping powers allow for foreign firms, organisations or individuals deemed to have endangered China’s sovereignty, security and development to be blacklisted. If an entity cuts “normal transactions” with China or discriminates against it, then that could also be grounds to be…

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China’s Xi Jinping calls for loyalty from private sector as Beijing readies for battle with US

September 17, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]President Xi Jinping has assured China’s private entrepreneurs they are a key part of the nation’s “socialist market economy”, as Beijing gears up for prolonged economic and tech rivalry against the United States.Xi delivered the message on Wednesday to the inaugural United Front Work conference for private businesses, a day after the Communist Party released a policy ordering the private sector to help meet the nation’s strategic goals as it faces an increasingly hostile external environment…

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China extends tariff exemptions on 16 US products for another year at the request of Chinese importers

September 15, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has decided to exempt tariffs on a batch of 16 US products, including fish meal, lubricants and cancer medications, for another year, marking a small concession in a much broader trade war with the United States.China’s Ministry of Finance said on its website on Tuesday that it extended its 2019 decision to exempt the 16 American products from additional tariffs for another year, until September 16, 2021.Those tariffs were levied in 2018 when China was engaging in a tit-for-tat tariff war…

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China should seize the moment to free up controls on the yuan to expand its international use

September 14, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]For the last five years, China’s central bank has been fighting to defend two key numbers: seven and three. Seven refers to the exchange rate between yuan and the US dollar – if the yuan weakens too much beyond seven to the US dollar, it would be regarded as a dangerous sign. Three refers to the level of China’s stockpile of foreign exchange reserves – if reserves dip below US$3 trillion, it would be seen as a sign of weakness.The context for the unannounced campaign to defend the two key…

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China’s move to protect Beijing’s inner city is a bit late, but still worth welcoming

September 7, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s latest plans for Beijing’s inner city are a bit late after decades of demolition and bulldozing in the heart of the ancient municipality, but they also bring hope that the moves could mark a turning point in the country’s urban development.The urban area surrounding the Forbidden City has witnessed great changes since the founding of the People’s Republic in 1949, as municipal and national leaders have exerted their political will and preferences on the city’s appearance. And in turn,…

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China’s urbanisation has fuelled economic growth, but without redirection it will come at a cost

August 31, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Urbanisation, the process by which people leave rural areas for cities, has powered China’s economic development in recent decades and altered the country’s natural and social landscapes as new towns mushroomed across the country.But if not done correctly, it also risks becoming a massive waste of resources. The attitude of many local authorities that “if we build a new town, people will come” looks increasingly wishful in the face of rising debt, slowing economic growth and an ageing…

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Cyprus Papers: secret migration of China’s rich, led by Asia’s richest woman, revealed in leaked documents

August 25, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]More than 500 Chinese people obtained European Union citizenship in the island nation of Cyprus between 2017 and 2019, including Asia’s richest woman, according to leaked documents obtained by Al Jazeera’s Investigative Unit.The documents, which are said to contain information on 2,500 immigrants to Cyprus during that time frame, appear to shed light on the secretive migration plans of China’s elite.Al Jazeera, the Qatari state-owned broadcaster, did not disclose the full list of immigrants who…

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China’s grain scarcity fears say more about uncertain relations with the US than food supply

August 24, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]In late 1960s and early 1970s, when China was on the brink of war with a military superpower, the Soviet Union, chairman Mao Zedong borrowed a line from the first emperor of the Ming dynasty and rolled out a nationwide policy that was memorised by every Chinese peasant and worker: dig tunnels deep, store grains everywhere.For Chinese who lived through that period – the generation of my parents and grandparents – the warning about possible food scarcity was horrifying, as it stirred memories of…

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US-China relations: Beijing condemns financial sanctions on Hong Kong

August 23, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s banking and insurance regulator has declared the United States’ financial sanctions on Hong Kong organisations and officials accused of eroding the city’s autonomy as “lacking legality”.In a statement published on its website, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC), issued a stern challenge to Washington.“Any US actions to undermine financial stability in Hong Kong are not only against the Chinese people but also against the people of the world, including the…

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Coronavirus: China’s State Council urges local authorities to speed up fiscal support for small firms

August 18, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s State Council has reiterated the urgent need to channel fiscal relief and bank credit to small businesses, as Beijing continues to nurse its fragile economy back to health after the coronavirus shock.At the first regular meeting of China’s cabinet in three weeks on Monday, Premier Li Keqiang urged local governments to swiftly allocate central government support to businesses and households, according to an official statement posted online.His remarks were a follow-up to a policy…

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China five-year plan: state media invites public submissions as Xi Jinping calls for ‘wisdom of the people’

August 17, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese state media has begun soliciting views from citizens ahead of the country’s 14th five-year plan, with scores of people flocking online to ask for improvements in everything from health care to pollution.The People’s Daily has launched a website to take suggestions from the public, which can be as short as five words and no longer than 1,000 characters.Social welfare, employment, education and the environment have emerged as the main areas of concern for regular Chinese, with a…

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Huarong corruption scandal underscores governance failures at China’s financial institutions

August 17, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The details of the massive financial corruption by Lai Xiaomin, the former chairman of a major state-owned asset management company, are truly jaw-dropping even by Chinese standards.Lai, the former boss of China Huarong Asset Management, last week pleaded guilty to taking 1.8 billion yuan (US$259 million) in bribes between 2008 and 2018. It means Lai, on average, took bribes of around half a million yuan every day for a decade.Lai was found to have hidden away around 270 million yuan (US$39…

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China’s high-speed railway network to double in length by 2035 under new blueprint

August 13, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s unprecedented railway spending boom will continue for at least another 15 years and see its high-speed network nearly double in length, China Railway Group, the state-owned railway builder, said in a new blueprint published on Thursday.Under the plan, China will construct about 200,000km (125,000 miles) of railways by 2035, a milestone year in which the nation is set to achieve President Xi Jinping’s vision for a “modern socialist country”.That will mean a 41 per cent increase in rail…

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China’s plan to boost railway freight falls behind target, knocking air pollution battle off track

August 12, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s ambitious three-year plan to boost railway cargo volume and reduce long-distance trucking – a key plank in Beijing’s campaign to cut air pollution – is falling behind schedule, according to official data and media reports. Under the plan, which was introduced by the central government in 2018, China’s “transport structure” was to be improved by shifting the movement of bulk cargo such as minerals from dirty, diesel-burning trucks to cleaner electric-powered railcars. By 2020, at least…

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TikTok: ByteDance to step up legal, PR fight in Trump’s war against Chinese-owned app, sources say

August 10, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]ByteDance, the Chinese owner of short video hit TikTok, is preparing to escalate its legal and public relations battle against US President Donald Trump’s executive order to ban the app in the United States unless it is sold, according to two people familiar with the situation.Meanwhile, ongoing talks with potential suitor Microsoft, as well as reported preliminary talks with social media giant Twitter, are unlikely to end in a deal, said one of the people who has been briefed on the talks but…

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China’s economic future depends on closing its wealth gap otherwise new domestic strategy won’t work

August 3, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China announced last week its new strategy to cope with a less accommodating international environment, so-called dual circulation, under which it will pursue growth in both its domestic and foreign trade sectors, but with the priority on the domestic market.According to the latest gathering of the Communist Party’s Politburo, this will be the direction for China’s economic policies in coming years, if not decades.The message is clear: China has to rely more on itself to sustain economic growth…

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China clung to US dollars in 2015 as its stock market crashed and capital flowed out, SAFE figures show

August 2, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Despite the stock market rout and capital exodus of 2015, China’s holdings of US dollars as a proportion of its foreign exchange remained rock solid throughout the year, figures from an official report show.The State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said in its 2019 annual report published on Friday that US dollars accounted for 58 per cent of its total reserves at the end of 2015, unchanged from the end of 2014.It did not give equivalent figures for any of the years since 2015 or a…

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China’s ministry at the forefront of US technology rivalry gets a new chief

July 31, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has appointed a new head of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), the government agency on the front line of its technology rivalry with the United States.Xiao Yaqing, who was most recently the head of the State Administration for Market Regulation, will take over from current minister Miao Wei, who has reached the retirement age of 65, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.Having been appointed MIIT party chief on Friday a day after a meeting of China’s…

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Xi Jinping braces for turbulence ahead as China’s relations with US continue to deteriorate

July 30, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Chinese President Xi Jinping on Thursday declared initial victory in achieving the Communist Party’s 2020 development goals and began laying out a long-term plan to manage a rapidly changing international environment highlighted by Beijing’s deteriorating relationship with the United States.The 25-member Politburo, the supreme decision-making body headed by Xi, had its midyear gathering on Thursday and discussed the country’s 14th five-year plan covering the period from 2021-25, as well as a …

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Huawei to double down on HSBC as legal battle over extradition of Meng Wanzhou intensifies

July 28, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Huawei Technologies, the giant Chinese telecom equipment maker at the centre of the growing China-US technology rivalry, is considering all possible options against HSBC for allegedly presenting “misleading evidence” that resulted in the arrest of its chief financial officer, Meng Wanzhou, in Canada, according to people familiar with the matter.While internal discussions are still in their preliminary stage, Shenzhen-based Huawei, which Washington has labelled a threat to US national security,…

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