Showing posts with label China. Show all posts
Showing posts with label China. Show all posts

11 December 2018

China and India can succeed in Afghanistan where US, Russia failed

Chayanika Saxena

Against the backdrop of a volatile global order, the Indo-Chinese bonhomie in Afghanistan offers a lesson in constructive competition

Far from being stable, Afghanistan is yet to even see its many conflicts end. The fractured political, economic and social reality of Afghanistan that we witness today is, in fact, the creation of a fractured mandate for peace. Despite the sheer number of international peace processes that have been initiated in Afghanistan’s name, little has been achieved in terms of restoring peace, stability and order there. These processes have often paralleled each other, vying for significance lest peace is attained but not on their terms. This unfortunate trend continues to date.

The rival powers of the United States and Russia have once again made Afghanistan an arena of their power play. Today, both these countries have put in place their own mechanisms that do not necessarily speak to each other.

Why India will supersede China – Part 2


Science has yet to define and fully understand consciousness, but the debate has been given a new impetus by artificial intelligence, where the issue centers on the question: Can AI develop its own consciousness?

The meaning of the European word consciousness as we understand it today is often attributed to René Descartes (1596-1650), who used the word “conscientia.” Others attribute the current notion of consciousness to John Locke’s “Essay Concerning Human Understanding,” published in 1690. Locke defined consciousness as “the perception of what passes in a man’s own mind.” An 18th-century encyclopedia defined consciousness awkwardly as “the opinion or internal feeling that we ourselves have from what we do.”

China’s Rebalancing: Recent Progress, Prospects and Policies

While China’s growth gathered momentum in 2017, rebalancing was uneven and decelerated along many dimensions reflecting the temporary factors behind the growth pickup. Going forward, rebalancing is expected to proceed as these temporary factors recede, but elevated income inequality and leverage will remain a challenge. The authorities are already pursuing several pro-rebalancing policies which could be expanded to support each dimension of rebalancing while reducing trade-offs between them.

China's Long-Range Bomber Flights

This report examines the key drivers behind China's strategic bomber flights throughout the Asia-Pacific region, assessing Chinese commentary on flights and leveraging a number of sources, including interviews in Taipei and Tokyo, to better understand and gauge regional reactions. The report recommends specific responses for consideration by the U.S. Air Force and U.S. policymakers, as well as allies and partners, offering an in-depth analysis of the key issues driving top Chinese leaders to move in the direction of conducting these overwater bomber flights.

China Is Angry With Trump’s Trade ‘Antics'

by Gordon G. Chang

As the “clash” between the United States and China looks increasingly existential in nature, the American public should be prepared for a long fight.

“You don’t do this with the Chinese,” said one of China’s former officials to the Washington Post this week. “You don’t triumphantly proclaim all their concessions in public. It’s just madness.”

Beijing officials do not know what to think in the aftermath of Saturday’s dinner in Buenos Aires between President Donald Trump and Chinese ruler Xi Jinping. As the Postreports, “One former official said the president’s antics had puzzled and angered his Chinese counterparts.”

Madman or genius, Trump is having a great effect on Beijing. And despite the wailing of Chinese officials—or maybe because of it—that looks like a good thing for the United States.

Huawei Executive’s Arrest Intensifies Trade War Fears

By Mark LandlerEdward Wong and Katie Benner

WASHINGTON — At dinner with China’s president, Xi Jinping, on Saturday night in Buenos Aires, President Trump celebrated their “special” relationship and all but predicted they would emerge with a truce in the trade war between the United States and China.

Seven thousand miles away, unbeknown to both leaders, Canadian police acting at the request of the United States were in the process of detaining Meng Wanzhou, a top executive of one of China’s flagship technology firms, as she changed planes in Vancouver.

The Justice Department is investigating Ms. Meng’s company, Huawei, on charges of violating sanctions on Iran, and her arrest was meant as a warning shot by the Trump administration in its campaign to limit the global spread of Chinese technology. But it has thrown Mr. Trump’s trade negotiations with Beijing into disarray, drawing a sharp protest from the Chinese government and sending financial markets into a panicky swoon, before a modest recovery on Thursday afternoon.

From growth opportunity to threat: how the world has changed its mind on China’s belt and road

Andreea Brînză

In the past two years, antipathy has steadily grown in the US, Europe, India, Pakistan and elsewhere towards the initiative, now seen around the world as an expression of Chinese ambition.

The European Union was among the first to act on its concerns as it tries to limit the Chinese presence on its turf and counter its influence. Last year, the EU launched an investigation into a Chinese-backed project to build a high-speed railway between the Serbian capital Belgrade and Budapest in Hungary. EU officials said the project, aimed at extending the belt and road into the heart of Europe, may have violated EU rules on public tenders for major transport projects.

Then in April this year, 27 of the 28 EU ambassadors in Beijing signed a document that criticised the belt and road for hampering free trade and favouring Chinese companies, which China subsidises.

Inside China's audacious global propaganda campaign

By Louisa Lim and Julia Bergin
Beijing is buying up media outlets and training scores of foreign journalists to ‘tell China’s story well’ – as part of a worldwide propaganda campaign of astonishing scope and ambition. 

As they sifted through resumes, the team recruiting for the new London hub of China’s state-run broadcaster had an enviable problem: far, far too many candidates. Almost 6,000 people were applying for just 90 jobs “reporting the news from a Chinese perspective”. Even the simple task of reading through the heap of applications would take almost two months.

For western journalists, demoralised by endless budget cuts, China Global Television Network presents an enticing prospect, offering competitive salaries to work in state-of-the-art purpose-built studios in Chiswick, west London. CGTN – as the international arm of China Central Television (CCTV) was rebranded in 2016 – is the most high-profile component of China’s rapid media expansion across the world, whose goal, in the words of President Xi Jinping, is to “tell China’s story well”. In practice, telling China’s story well looks a lot like serving the ideological aims of the state.

10 December 2018

Planet China Beats This Rocky U.S. Market Orbit

Shuli Ren 

The U.S. is from Mars, China is from Venus – or at least, that’s the impression left by last weekend’s Group of 20 summit. 

Markets this week whipsawed as they digested the high-level dinner between President Donald Trump and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping. A direct side-by-side comparison of the two statements that came out of that meeting couldn’t have looked more different, and investors have started to fret that Trump had overstated his successes, again. As of Wednesday morning, all we have from the Chinese is a vague acknowledgement that there is indeed a consensus that the two sides will restart trade talks within 90 days. Little concrete came about. 

How should investors position themselves when the world’s two largest economies look like they are from two planets? I would take Venus’s side. Emerging markets, including China, are now the safer bet. 

Ancient Chinese Secret: These 14 Phenomenal Photos Reveal There Were Indeed Black Chinese

Paco Taylor

Ina once-popular commercial for Calgon detergent in the 1970s, a curious housewife probes the Chinese owner of the local laundry for the answer to one of the world’s eternal mysteries: “How do you get shirts so clean, Mr. Lee?” After peering over his shoulder (so as to be sure that his not-so-discreet wife isn’t standing near) the man turns back around, raises a finger to his lips and says through a smile, “Ancient Chinese secret!”

While the answer to the question posed to the laundry owner by the woman was a closely guarded secret — one that his sweet, no-nonsense wife happily ruined — it was neither ancient nor even Chinese in origin. But the TV spot famously tapped into one of the most enduring legends about the country whose Ming Dynasty rulers had a 16-to-26 foot wall built around it: the age-old traditions of secrecy.

The “Tariff Man” President Is Stuck Between China and Wall Street

By John Cassidy

Donald Trump never admits when he screws things up, still less apologizes for it. But on Thursday morning, when he took his daily plunge into Twitter, he was clearly trying to repair some of the damage he’d done on Tuesday, when his skeptical tweets about the weekend’s ceasefire in the U.S.-China trade war had helped prompt a seven-hundred-and-ninety-nine-point fall in the Dow, the fourth-largest points drop in history.

“I am a Tariff Man,” Trump had written on Tuesday morning, and investors hadn’t hung around to find out if he was bluffing. Already concerned about the possibility of a sharp slowdown in the U.S. economy next year, they had dumped stocks across the board, particularly in companies that would be hit hard by another escalation in the trade war. Boeing had fallen almost five per cent, Caterpillar almost seven per cent.

US strikes at heart of 'Made in China' with Huawei arrest

BEIJING/WASHINGTON -- The arrest in Canada of Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of Chinese telecommunications equipment maker Huawei Technologies, on the very day that the presidents of the U.S. and China dined together augurs rough seas ahead for the Sino-American trade talks.

"The Chinese side has lodged stern representations" with both Ottawa and Washington, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Geng Shuang said in Thursday's press briefing. Beijing has demanded that they "immediately clarify the reason for the detention" and release Meng, he said.

"According to my information, neither the U.S. nor Canada has made any clarification on the reason for the detention so far," Geng said.

Latest G20 Show Wins Mixed Reviews: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

by Doug Bandow 

The official statement was anemic and the bilateral meetings were formulaic, but the personal and policy embarrassments were few.

The “G” meetings are largely for show; it doesn’t matter how large the number. Indeed, the bigger the number the less serious the meeting is likely to be. The gatherings are largely used for public relations, an opportunity for world leaders to demonstrate their foreign policy bona fides to voters—subjects in undemocratic states—back home. The best definition of success at such a meeting is nothing bad happening.

This appears to be the case with the latest G20 conclave. World leaders affirmed their undying love for one another, committed to advancing all things wonderful, and avoided any dramatic political disasters. The official statement was anemic and the bilateral meetings were formulaic, but the personal and policy embarrassments were few.

China’s Crackdown on Hong Kong’s Freedoms Is Bad for Business

By Joel Sandhu and Jill van de Walle

China’s encroachment on Hong Kong’s democratic freedoms and its interference in the city’s independent judiciary are threatening to diminish Hong Kong’s appeal for international investment and trade. In his open letter to United States’ President Donald Trump the Hong Kong National Party’s convener, Andy Chan urged Trump to “suspend the differential treatments between Hong Kong and China.” He went on to write, “With the loss of autonomy and protection to fundamental rights, there is no longer any basis for the United States to give Hong Kong those treatments under the Policy Act.”

G20 In Buenos Aires: End Of US-China Trade War? – Analysis

By Su-Hyun Lee and Chia-yi Lee*

The 2018 G20 Summit in Buenos Aires, concluded amidst rising tensions between the US and China over trade. The G20 leaders’ final declaration this year addressed important issues like digitalisation, infrastructure, food security, and migration, besides some concessions to the US in trade.

The Group of Twenty (G20) Leaders Summit for 2018 took place over the last weekend in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Leaders of 20 members (19 countries plus European Union) and invited countries and key International Organisations got together to discuss an array of global issues. On the sidelines, leaders also engaged in bilateral meetings to coordinate on issues of importance to their countries, including the significant meeting between the US President Donald Trump and the Chinese President Xi Jinping on trade.

9 December 2018

The America hawks circling Beijing

The epiphany that inspired Wang Xiangsui’s best known book came when he was a 41-year-old colonel in China’s air force, posted near the Taiwan strait.

It was March 1996 and the People’s Liberation Army had launched military exercises intended to intimidate Taiwanese voters ahead of their self-ruled island’s first presidential election. The Chinese government feared that Lee Teng-hui, the incumbent and eventual winner of the election, was determined to formalise Taiwan’s de facto independence.

As the crisis escalated, Mr Wang felt that Mr Lee was more worried about the exercises’ effect on Taiwan’s stock market than he was about the PLA missiles splashing down in the island’s territorial waters. If falling share prices made people feel poorer, Mr Wang reckoned, they might be less inclined to vote for Mr Lee.

The coming cyberwar: China may already be monitoring your electronic communications


“Sometime they’ll give a war and nobody will come.”

In Carl Sandburg’s epic book-length poem “The People, Yes” from 1936, one of the best-known antiwar slogans was born. It highlighted the isolationist stance the United States kept prior to World War II.

Then we were at war. From Pearl Harbor and the Battle of Guadalcanal in the Pacific, to D-Day and Operation Market Garden in Europe, America’s soldiers, sailors, and airmen battled for freedom around the world, supported by the ferocious war machine back home.

But, today, what if China and Russia declared war upon us and we forgot to show up?

What the US wants from China during the 90-day trade war truce

Finbarr Bermingham

With the US and China facing a 90-day deadline to resolve their differences over trade, we look at some of the areas where Washington will be looking for concessions and its chances of getting what it wants.

Forced technology transfer

China has officially denied that it forces foreign companies to hand over technology as a condition of doing business in the country – a long-standing complaint from the US and other countries.

In October Commerce Minister Zhong Shan said: “I want to emphasise that China’s laws and regulations do not contain any requirement for technology transfer and that companies’ purchases of technologies and patents are pure market behaviour.”

This makes it unlikely that China will openly commit to reforms in this area, which means any movement on this is likely to happen behind the scenes.

US-China Defense Dialogue Dashes Hopes For Progress In South China Sea – Analysis

By Mark J. Valencia

The long anticipated Second US-China Diplomatic and Security Dialogue has come and gone and there with no apparent progress on any of the wicked issues – especially their confrontation in the South China Sea. Sharp policy differences and high tensions remain with no apparently agreed risk reduction measures in place.

The 9 November meeting in Washington was between delegations led by Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and Secretary of Defense James Mattis for the U.S. and Politburo Member Yang Jiechi and Defense Minster Wei Fenghe for China. Their meeting had been postponed, reportedly due to rising tensions between their militaries. Indeed, some question why the meeting took place at all– especially in Washington.

Trump and Xi: From Ceasefire to Lasting Deal?

On December 1, President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping met at the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Argentina following months of rising tensions and tit-for-tat tariff retaliation between the United States and China. What resulted from the meeting can best be described as a ceasefire: President Xi agreed to purchase “a very substantial” amount of U.S. products to reduce China’s trade surplus with the United States, and President Trump agreed to a temporary pause on any tariff increases. The two countries intend to use this window to negotiate structural changes in China, aiming for completion “within the next 90 days.” However, observers should not expect a quick resolution to issues that have built up over decades.

Q1: What specifically did the two leaders agree?