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China's Economic News

Discussion in 'China & Asia Pacific' started by Martian, Aug 6, 2010.

  1. Dilemma

    Dilemma Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Back with a bang!
     
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  2. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Chart of the Week: China's Growth

    Chart of the Week: China's Growth | Benzinga.com

    "Chart of the Week: China's Growth
    By Charles Hugh Smith
    April 16, 2011 2:04 PM

    If China's remarkable growth rate follows the typical pattern of industrializing nations, it may be due for a decline.
    ...
    Here is a chart of the GDP of Japan and China. The take-away is that developing/industrializing countries experience an extremely rapid growth rate that plateaus or even declines after the "low hanging fruit" of growth has been picked. There is no hard and fast rule, of course, but it looks like the first ramp-up stage takes about 15 years, and the second fast-growth phase lasts about a decade.

    [​IMG]

    If we date China's growth as starting around the mid-1980s, then it may be approaching the point of diminishing returns on investment. Indeed, the housing/real estate bubble in China suggests just such an exhaustion of high-return investment.

    Clearly, China's asymptotic growth rate cannot continue forever. As the oval highlights, Japan's period of seemingly never-ending fast growth ended with a decline. This is not guaranteed, of course, but it does suggest that a decline following rapid sustained growth may be a pattern that typifies industrialization and the inevitable transition from high-yield investment to misallocation of capital and low-yield investments.

    This chart poses an important question: what will happen to the commodities boom and the global economy if China's economy takes a natural/typical course after two decades of blistering growth and turns down for a few years?

    It's a question worth pondering, if for no other reason than to consider hedges against the possible answers.

    ----------

    My post in the comment section (with China Lee pseudonym):

    The mindless examination of a graph can lead to erroneous conclusions.

    In 1995, the "circled peak" on the graph, Japan's nominal per-capita income equaled the United States. In 2010, at the current peak in China's graph, China's nominal per-capita income is 1/10 of the United States.

    To match the 1995 Japanese peak/per-capita income, China's GDP needs to reach $60 trillion. That will require many decades of continued growth! China's GDP will not plateau until about 2050.
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2011
  3. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    China is rebalancing her economy from exports to domestic demand

    China Economy: Trade, Rebalancing, Exchange Rate, And Bubble Warning

    "China Economy: Trade, Rebalancing, Exchange Rate, And Bubble Warning
    Zarathustra W., Also Sprach Analyst | Apr. 11, 2011, 8:24 PM

    This is something that I don’t fully understand: as China reported the first quarterly trade deficit on Sunday, some interpreted that as a sign of rebalancing of the economy. The reality is that the March trade balance was actually a surplus, rather than a deficit as market expected previously. Rebalancing? I still think we would need some more time to judge, and political pressure to allow Chinese Yuan to appreciate will continue to be high. (article continues)"

    ----------

    My post in the comment section (with China Lee pseudonym):

    "This is something that I don’t fully understand: as China reported the first quarterly trade deficit on Sunday, some interpreted that as a sign of rebalancing of the economy. The reality is that the March trade balance was actually a surplus, rather than a deficit as market expected previously. Rebalancing?"

    China's economy is clearly being rebalanced, because the trade surplus as a percentage of China's economy has dropped significantly. In 2010, China's current account balance was $272.5 billion surplus (see List of sovereign states by current account balance - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). This represents a mere 4.63% trade surplus in China's US$5.88 trillion economy.

    In contrast, China had a trade surplus of $290 billion in 2008 (see China's 2008 trade surplus about $290 bln -Xinhua | Reuters). In 2008, China's GDP was US$4.52 trillion (see List of countries by past GDP (nominal) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia). This represented, in 2008, a whopping 6.42% trade surplus.

    In conclusion, from 2008 to 2010, China's trade surplus as a percentage of its economy has shrunk from 6.42% to 4.63%. This is undeniable proof that the Chinese economy is moving away from exports and becoming more reliant on domestic demand.
     
  4. DaRk KnIght

    DaRk KnIght Lt. Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    China's forex reserves at $3 trillion, FDI grows 33%

    China continues to attract good inflows of foreign direct investment, with $3 trillion of forex reserves.

    It clocked growth of 32.9 per cent in FDI inflows year-on-year in March to $12.52 billion. FDI in China has increased this year, with a 29.4 per cent year-on-year rise in the first quarter to $30.34 billion, ministry of commerce, spokesman Yao Jian said on Tuesday.

    FDI inflow in March was significantly higher than February's take of $7.8 billion.

    Compared with 1,156 new foreign-funded enterprises in February, 2,538 new foreign-invested enterprises were approved in March, up 10.5 per cent from the same period last year.


    China approved 5,937 new foreign-invested companies in the first quarter, up 8.8 per cent year on year.

    By the end of March, China had approved 716,578 foreign-invested companies and used $1.08 trillion of FDI.

    FDI in China increased 17.4 per cent year on year in 2010, registering a total of $105.74 billion, boosting the forex reserves to $3 trillion, which is the highest in the world.

    As its forex reserves grew manifold, China now is stepping up its outbound direct investment which stood at $8.51 billion in the first quarter, up 13.2 per cent year on year.

    This brings China's cumulative outbound non-financial direct investment to $267.3 billion by March-end, Yao said.

    China's outbound direct investment rose 150 per cent both in Australia [ Images ] and the European Union in the first quarter, Yao said.

    About $1.2 billion, or 14.1 per cent of the total outbound direct investment, was channelled into company mergers, mostly in the manufacturing sector, in the first quarter, he said.

    China's contracted projects overseas reported $16.98 billion in business revenue in the first quarter, up 2.9 per cent year on year and new contract value stood at $30.95 billion in the first quarter, up 16.7 per cent year on year.

    Contracted business projects declined in the Middle East and northern Africa due to unrest there, Yao said.

    China sent about 93,000 labourers overseas in the first quarter, about 10,000 more than the same period last year.

    About 769,000 Chinese labourers were stationed overseas during the period, nearly 90,000 less than the same period last year, Yao said, adding the number of Chinese labourers in Africa dropped by about 24,000 year on year to 173,000 at the end of March.

    China's forex reserves at $3 trillion, FDI up 33% - Rediff.com Business
     
  5. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Cumulative greenhouse gas emissions, who's responsible for the clean-up?

    Greenhouse gas emissions soaring around the globe | Worldfocus

    [​IMG]
    Cumulative Emissions (millions of tons): Using totals from the mid-19th century up to the present day, the U.S. and E.U. far surpass other countries in their historical contribution to global warming. The original 1992 UN climate change convention in Rio de Janeiro, which paved the way for the Kyoto Protocol of 1997, called for developed nations to take the lead in cutting emissions.

    [​IMG]
    Per Capita Emissions (tons per person): Compared to industrialized countries, less developed nations contribute relatively little to global emissions. But some developing countries such as India, with the world’s second highest population and rapid economic growth, could see sharp per-person emissions increases.
     
  6. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Hot cars at Shanghai International Auto Show

    Head turner : Hot cars at Shanghai International Auto Show - Photogallery - Trends - IBNLive

    [​IMG]
    Head turner
    A model poses beside the Porsche Hybrid during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition at Shanghai New International Expo Center on April 19, 2011 in Shanghai, China. The 14th Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition (Auto Shanghai 2011) will be held from April 21 to 28 with the theme of 'Innovation For Tomorrow'. About 2,000 carmakers and parts providers from 20 countries are due to showcase 1,100 car models, 75 of which makes their world premieres in the auto show. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model poses next to the Dongfeng EJ02 during the opening day of the Shanghai Auto Show April 19, 2011. (Reuters/Aly Song)

    [​IMG]
    Models sit on a Subaru's XV concept car to pose for photographers at Subaru presentation section on the press day at the Shanghai International Auto Show Tuesday, April 19, 2011 in Shanghai, China. (AP Photo)

    [​IMG]
    A model poses beside the Spyker C8 Aileron during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model poses beside the Porsche sport car during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model at Toyota G's Reiz concept car during Toyota presentation on the press day at the Shanghai International Auto Show Tueseday, April 19, 2011 in Shanghai, China. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)

    [​IMG]
    Two models pose beside the Maserati GT MC Stradale during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model stands beside the Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 sport car during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model stands beside the Bentley Mulsonne during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)

    [​IMG]
    A model stands beside the Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 sport car during the media day of the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition. (Photo by Feng Li/Getty Images)
     
  7. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Chinese leaders meet largest and most senior U.S. Senate delegation

    [​IMG]
    Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (5th L, front) meets with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and his delegation, in Beijing, capital of China, April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

    CRI Hourly News (updated at 09:00 2011/04/22)

    "Largest US senatorial delegation in China

    The largest and most senior U.S. congressional delegation to set foot in China, led by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have now started their tour outside Beijing, as part of the group's week-long visit.

    The 10-senator delegation represent more than a third of the US population.

    The senators have taken the high-speed train to Tianjin, and have visited a clean energy company in Hebei."

    [​IMG]
    Wu Bangguo (3rd R, front), chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China, meets with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (4th L, front), in Beijing, capital of China, April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

    Chinese leaders meet U.S. Senate delegation

    "Chinese leaders meet U.S. Senate delegation
    English.news.cn 2011-04-22 00:25:44

    [​IMG]
    Wu Bangguo (R, front), chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China, meets with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (L, front), in Beijing, capital of China, April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

    BEIJING, April 21 (Xinhua) -- China's top legislator Wu Bangguo on Thursday called for more parliamentary exchanges between China and the United States, saying that dialogue and communication could help improve mutual trust.

    Wu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), made the remarks when meeting with a delegation of senior U.S. Senators in Beijing.

    Wu said the NPC has established a regular exchange mechanism with the U.S. side, which has already played a positive role in developing Sino-American relations.

    "I hope the two sides could keep improving dialogue and communication to continue to help enhance mutual trust and cooperation between China and the United States," Wu said.

    Talking about bilateral relations, Wu stressed that China and the United States share many more common interests than differences.

    China will work with the United States to actively implement the consensus reached between President Hu Jintao and President Barack Obama, and hopes that the two countries could take each other's key concerns into consideration, and foster cooperation and promote friendship to a higher level, Wu said.

    The delegation was led by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and consisted of nine other senators.

    Reid said the United States and China share similar views on many significant issues, and the U.S. Senate hopes to work with the NPC to push forward the bilateral cooperation in fields such as trade, environment and clean energy.


    [​IMG]
    Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping (R) meets with U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, in Beijing, capital of China, April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Pang Xinglei)

    Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping also met with the delegation on Thursday.

    China-U.S. relations cannot develop without the participation and support from the U.S. congress, Xi said.

    Xi said he hopes the U.S. Senators will actively promote and support bilateral exchanges and cooperation, and play constructive roles in promoting the cooperative partnership between the two countries.


    Xi said China and the United States are building a cooperative partnership based on mutual respect and mutual benefit. China hopes to improve political trust with the United States, promote mutually beneficial cooperation and improve coordination in international affairs.

    Xi also briefed the U.S. Senators on China's 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015), calling on the two sides to seize the opportunities to expand mutual investment, cement cooperation in clean energy and infrastructure construction and further improve economic and trade cooperation.

    He also said he hopes that the two countries could overcome the interference of protectionism and properly resolve trade disputes through consultation on an equal footing.

    China is the United States' second largest trading partner and its third largest export market with bilateral trade totaling 38.534 billion U.S. dollars in 2010, according to China's Commerce Ministry.

    Reid said the cooperation between the United States and China has contributed to world peace, stability and prosperity and the U.S. Senate will make unremitting efforts to promote U.S.-China relations.

    Lu Yongxiang, vice chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, also met the delegation on Thursday.

    On Thursday morning, the delegation took the high-speed train to Tianjin and visited a clean energy company in Langfang of Hebei Province.

    The week-long tour will also take the delegation to the cities of Chengdu and Xi'an in west China."

    [​IMG]
    On Thursday morning, the largest and most senior U.S. Senatorial delegation rode a Chinese Railway High-speed train (like the CRH pictured above) to Tianjin.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2011
  8. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    HTC Thunderbolt Rivals Apple iPhone 4 in Smartphone Wars

    HTC Thunderbolt Rivals Apple iPhone 4 in Smartphone Wars - FoxNews.com

    "HTC Thunderbolt Rivals Apple iPhone 4 in Smartphone Wars
    Published April 20, 2011 | NewsCore

    [​IMG]
    The fast HTC Thunderbolt, the newest 4G smartphone from Verizon.

    Taiwanese handset manufacturer HTC was stealing some of Apple's thunder as more smartphone users opted for the speedier 4G advantage, the New York Post reported Wednesday.

    The HTC Thunderbolt, the first phone to run on Verizon Wireless' faster 4G long-term evolution (LTE) network, briefly overtook the red-hot iPhone in sales at Verizon stores in the U.S. late last month, according to a Wall Street research firm.

    The Thunderbolt, which runs Google's Android software, appeared to be a favorite of those looking for Wi-Fi-like speeds on their smartphones, while Verizon's iPhone 4 still uses the dated 3G code division multiple access technology.

    The popularity of LTE could spell trouble for Apple as smartphone customers look for something new. New York-based ITG Investment Research estimated that sales of Verizon's iPhone 4, available since Feb. 10, would come in at two million for the quarter.

    As of late March, the HTC Thunderbolt "surpassed the iPhone as the top-selling phone at Verizon," ITG said in a report. Verizon declined to comment.

    Another report this week from Social Nuggets, a firm that measures sentiment across the Internet, said the Thunderbolt rose to the No. 1 spot from No. 8 on its smartphone index. The iPhone 4 dropped from No. 6 to No. 10.


    One analyst said Tuesday that Apple diverted more of its resources to beefing up its iPad dominance with the launch of an iPad 2 than it did to developing an iPhone 5. Now, there is talk that a new iPhone might not be ready until as late as next year."

    [Note: I just realized that I have a Taiwanese thread on this forum, which I don't in other places. I'll substitute a different Chinese economics story for this one later.]
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2011
  9. DaRk KnIght

    DaRk KnIght Lt. Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    Re: Hot cars at Shanghai International Auto Show

    In my opinion Models are much better than sports cars:laugh:
     
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  10. DaRk KnIght

    DaRk KnIght Lt. Colonel ELITE MEMBER

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    China set to unearth shale power


    YUANBA: China has spent tens of billions of dollars buying into energy resources from Africa to Latin America to slake the unquenched thirst for fuel from its growing industry and burgeoning cities.

    But China may have more energy riches under its own soil than policy makers in the world's second-largest economy ever dared imagine.

    Just over a year ago, Beijing awakened to a technology revolution that has unlocked massive reserves of gas trapped within shale rock formations in the United States.

    Once deemed too costly to extract, shale gas has turned around US dependence on foreign gas imports. Just a few years ago, the United States was building scores of expensive facilities to import liquefied natural gas (LNG), looking at booming long-term demand forecasts and wondering which countries would supply the huge volume of imports it needed.

    Instead, the United States is turning import facilities into export terminals, because its shale gas reserves are estimated to be big enough to meet domestic demand for 30 years. This is an American dream that China wants to emulate.

    "America's shale gas production alone has exceeded that of total Chinese gas output. That gives us a lot of confidence," said Zhang Dawei, deputy director of the Strategic Research Centre for Oil and Gas in the Ministry of Land and Resources (MLR).

    China's confidence has been bolstered by a new report of its estimated reserves of shale gas, which shows them to be, by far, the largest in the world.

    The US Energy Information Agency in a report last month estimates China holds 36.1 trillion cubic metres (1,275 trillion cubic feet) of technically recoverable shale gas reserves -- significantly higher than the 24.4 tcm (862 trillion cubic feet) in the United States, which has the second-most.

    Industry estimates in China peg shale gas resources slightly lower -- but still huge -- at 26 trillion cubic metres (tcm), although they have yet to give their own forecasts of how much of that is recoverable.

    China's imminent shale rush comes at a critical point.

    It will soon overtake the United States as the world's top energy user and is already the world's biggest coal burner. China also pumps more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than any other country.

    Beijing's bureaucrats thus face a daunting challenge: how to clean up its brown skies while meeting the world's fastest growing energy demand.

    Natural gas burns more cleanly than other fossil fuels and installing gas-fired power generation is cheaper and easier than building nuclear plants. The problem is China cannot meet its rising demand for gas with its limited reserves of conventional gas. It faces the prospect of becoming as dependent on international markets for gas as it is for oil, where China is the world's second-largest importer.

    But shale gas may not be as clean as advertised, according to a study released last week by Cornell University in New York. This study argues that significant amounts of methane -- a potent greenhouse gas -- escape into the atmosphere during production in wells and distribution in pipelines.

    Regardless, China is racing to find out how much shale gas it can exploit -- and how quickly it can get the technology and build the infrastructure it needs to pump it to market -- to reduce its dependence on foreign sources of gas.

    AUCTION ACTION

    The starting gun for that race is about to fire any day now.

    The MLR said it would hold the first auction of shale gas blocks by the end of the first quarter of this year, so it is already overdue. The ministry had previously delayed the auction, initially scheduled last November, to open up the bidding to more domestic companies -- inject more competition into the process and quicken the pace of shale development.

    The auction is for eight exploration blocks covering 18,000 square kilometres in four inland provinces: southwest Sichuan, Chongqing and Guizhou, and central Hubei province.

    "We are aiming for major breakthroughs in locating the reserves in five years, and in eight years shale gas should take a significant position in China's energy mix," said Zhang at the land ministry. He talked of having shale gas account for one-tenth of China's total gas output by 2020.

    China has identified shale gas as one of the country's top targets for technological breakthroughs in the 2011-2015 five-year plan, which means that Beijing will be opening the funding faucets for shale gas research.

    China's National Energy Administration is setting up a shale gas laboratory in Langfang, near Beijing, to be financed mostly by PetroChina, and that will become China's national shale gas research centre, officials say.

    Experts say shale, which needs intensive drilling and many wells, plays to China's strengths.

    China set to unearth shale power - The Economic Times
     
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  11. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    China Securities Journal, NASDAQ sign MOU for sharing information service

    China Securities Journal, NASDAQ sign MOU for sharing information service - People's Daily Online

    "China Securities Journal, NASDAQ sign MOU for sharing information service
    12:09, April 23, 2011

    [​IMG]
    Lin Chen (C), publisher and chairman of China Securities Journal Limited Company (CSJ), poses with other representatives after CSJ signed a memorandum with NASDAQ OMX in New York, the United States, on April 21, 2011. CSJ and NASDAQ OMX Group Corporate Services (NASDAQ), Inc. signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Thursday that focuses on sharing market and database information. (Xinhua/Wu Kaixiang)

    [​IMG]
    Representatives of China Securities Journal Limited Company (CSJ) can be seen on the screen outside NASDAQ in New York, the United States, on April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Wu Kaixiang)

    [​IMG]
    Representatives of China Securities Journal Limited Company (CSJ) can be seen on the screen outside NASDAQ in New York, the United States, on April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Wu Kaixiang)

    [​IMG]
    Lin Chen (C), publisher and chairman of China Securities Journal Limited Company (CSJ), attends the bell ceremony after CSJ signed a memorandum with NASDAQ OMX in New York, the United States, on April 21, 2011. (Xinhua/Wu Kaixiang)
     
  12. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    China's Peaceful Development Is Good for America

    Dai Bingguo: China's Peaceful Development Is Good for America - WSJ.com

    "China's Peaceful Development Is Good for America
    By DAI BINGGUO
    MAY 9, 2011, 9:32 P.M. ET

    But first both sides need to build a relationship of equality and mutual trust.

    [​IMG]
    Hillary Clinton (right) toasts Hu Jintao during his visit to Washington in January. (Reuters)

    The past 40 years have seen a growth in China-United States relations that no one would have imagined when the rapprochement between the two nations began. The ubiquity of "Made in China" products in the U.S. bespeaks deep economic ties; 120,000 Chinese students study in America; and an increasing number of Americans learn the Chinese language. America is likewise present in China: Every day, hundreds of thousands of Chinese travel on Boeing airplanes; young people wait in long queues to buy the latest iPhone; and Americans are the second-largest population in China.

    However, despite such closeness in our relations, many American friends still do not know the true China. The visit to America my colleagues and I make this week for the latest Strategic and Economic Dialogue is to implement the agreement reached between our respective leaders during President Hu Jintao's visit in January, so as to advance the China-U.S. cooperative partnership based on mutual respect and mutual benefit. It is another opportunity for both Chinese and Americans to improve our understanding of, and relationship with, each other.

    A central message we would like to convey to our American friends is that China is committed to the path of peaceful development. Over the past 60 years since the founding of the People's Republic, and especially the past 30 years of reform and opening up, China has undergone a sweeping and profound social transformation. The Chinese people, talented and hard-working, with their determination for self-improvement and a readiness to learn from others, have found a new development path to modernization in a globalized world. We call it "the path of peaceful development." It is a path to promote peace and common development of the world with our own development.

    China's economy has maintained an annual average growth of over 9%, its GDP growing 16-fold to become the second-largest in the world. Yet it remains a developing country. GDP per head, a mere $4,000, is not even one-tenth that of the U.S. and ranks around 100th place in the world. We have to create 25 million new jobs every year. In terms of development, China is at least decades, if not centuries, behind the United States.

    China has never thought of vying for leading position in the world. We have had more than enough of tough days. The only thing we want is that, with our hard work and wisdom, plus the cooperation and exchanges with other countries, we can lift the Chinese people out of poverty.

    That development will benefit not only China, but also the rest of the world—and especially America. For nine consecutive years, China has been the fastest-growing export market for the U.S. American exports to China grew by 32% last year and 33.3% in the first three months of this year. For 40 of the 50 American states, China ranks among their top five export markets.

    A recent report by the American Chamber of Commerce in China reveals that 85% of the American companies in China reported good profits in 2010, 78% of them saw their profits grow by a big margin, and 83% of them intended to increase investment in China. For several years in a row, it has been the only growing market among America's top 10 auto export markets.

    Large imports of inexpensive yet quality products from China have enabled the U.S. to keep inflation at bay and saved American consumers more than $600 billion in the last 10 years. In the same period, more than 3.25 million jobs have been created in the U.S. thanks to exports to China.

    The growing inward investment by Chinese companies has also created a large number of jobs in the U.S. For instance, the Chicago-based Wanxiang America Corporation has created over 5,600 jobs. China has in recent years been the fastest-growing source of inbound tourists for the United States. Last year, as many as 490,000 Chinese tourists visited. They brought considerable business opportunity for the U.S. service sector.

    A stronger and more influential China has cooperated with the U.S. in international affairs and played a positive and constructive role. China and the U.S. have conducted effective communication and coordination on such hotspot issues as the Korean and Iranian nuclear issues as well as global counterterrorism, nonproliferation and climate change. In dealing with the international financial crisis, China has helped the U.S. to get through the difficult times. China is a partner the United States can count on.

    Our challenge, both this week and at other such summits in the future, is to work together so that growing prosperity on each side of the Pacific Ocean becomes mutually reinforcing.

    America has a role to play in the transformation of China's economic growth pattern, as put forward in the recently unveiled 12th Five-Year plan (2011-2015), toward greater domestic consumption. China's market is expected to become one of the world's largest in the not too distant future. If American enterprises seize this opportunity, "Made in USA" products will have more chances to their competitiveness in the vast Chinese market.

    China will further open sectors where investment and trade already are open, and will open new sectors to foreign involvement. It will create an environment favorable to the long-term development of foreign investors. China will increase imports and pursue a basically balanced trade instead of a trade surplus.

    Washington has a role to play in allowing American companies to capitalize on these new opportunities. Relaxing controls on the export of high-tech products to China will improve the China-U.S. trade pattern, which will in turn boost President Obama's strategy to double American exports.

    China will encourage its capable enterprises to move into overseas markets. As long as the U.S. adopts a more inclusive and open policy, many Chinese enterprises, including private ones, would increase investment in America, which will create more jobs locally and help the U.S. alleviate its debt and fiscal pressures by boosting growth.

    China will make great efforts to build a resource-efficient and environment-friendly society, develop circular economy and promote low-carbon technologies. New energy, new materials, energy-efficient and environment-friendly technologies and products are precisely where U.S. strengths and its future priorities lie. Cooperation in green endeavors will make a major contribution to mitigating global climate change.

    China and America have the capability and wisdom to build trust, address problems, expand common interests and achieve mutual benefit through dialogue, exchanges and greater cooperation.

    Ours should be a relationship of equality and mutual trust in which we both take a rational and objective view of each other's strategic intentions. It should be a relationship of cooperation and mutual benefit. We should each respect the other's choice of social system and development path as well as the sovereignty, territorial integrity and development interest of the other side and appropriately manage our differences and problems.

    As one of the most important bilateral relationships in the world today, the China-U.S. relationship affects not only the well-being of our people, but the future of our world. We have a responsibility to get along with each other. This way, the China-U.S. cooperative partnership will take deep roots, bear rich fruits and benefit our two peoples and the entire world.

    Mr. Dai is a state councilor of the People's Republic of China."
     
  13. Martian

    Martian Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Inside Macau's new $2 billion casino

    Relax - Inside Macau's new casino

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    Macau's newest casino opened its doors Sunday hoping to lure visitors from across Asia in the latest sign that gambling firms are betting large on continued growth at the world's biggest gaming hub. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    The HK$14.9 billion (S$2.37 billion) Galaxy Macau, which boasts 450 gaming tables, 1,100 slot machines, and more than 2,200 hotel rooms, hopes to tap the burgeoning gaming revenues being drawn by the former Portuguese colony. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    An employee walks past a fountain and lighting installation at the lobby of Galaxy Macau, the latest resort in Macau, as it opens for business on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    Lying on a 550,000-square-metre plot on the glitzy Cotai strip, the Galaxy boasts three plush hotels, a rooftop wave pool and a man-made beach. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    Attendants welcome guests inside Galaxy Macau, the latest resort in Macau, during its opening on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    Employees walk inside the "High Limits Area" of a casino on the opening day of Galaxy Macau, the latest resort in Macau on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    Croupiers sit in front of gaming tables inside a casino on the opening day of Galaxy Macau, the latest resort in Macau on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    A casino official checks a slot machine prior to the opening of the Galaxy Macau casino on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)

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    Galaxy Entertainment Group Chairman Lui Che-woo speaks during a news conference on the opening day of Galaxy Macau, the latest resort in Macau on May 15, 2011. (Text and Photo: AFP, Reuters)
     
  14. Capt.Popeye

    Capt.Popeye Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    China crisis over Yangtze river drought forces drastic dam measures
    Asia's biggest river – is experiencing its worst drought in 50 years, forcing an unprecedented release of water from the Three Gorges reservoir. The drought is damaging crops, threatening wildlife and raising doubts about the viability of China's massive water diversion ambitions.

    Between now and 10 June the dam will release 5bn cubic metres of water – equivalent to the volume of Lake Windermere in Britain every day – as engineers sacrifice hydroelectric generation for irrigation, drinking supplies and ecosystem support.

    The drastic measure comes amid warnings of power shortages and highlights the severity of the dry spell in the Yangtze delta, which supports 400 million people and 40% of China's economic activity.

    From January to April, the worst hit province of Hubei has had 40% less rainfall than the average over the same period since 1961. Shanghai, Jiangsu and Hunan are also severely affected.

    Regional authorities have declared more than 1,300 lakes "dead", which means they are out of use for irrigation and drinking supply. Shortages affect 4.4 million people and 3.2 million farm animals, according to the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters.

    The narrowing and shallowing of the Yangtze and its tributaries has stranded thousands of boats and left a 220km stretch off limits for container ships.

    The central government has dispatched water pumps and diesel generators to Hubei and Hunan to ease the impact. This is expensive and adds to the pressures on China's energy supply system at a time when the state grid authorities are warning of the worst summer power cuts in seven years.

    "The primary cause of this drought is a lack of rainfall. But we can also be certain that the Three Gorges dam has had a negative impact on the water supply downstream," said Ma Jun, founder of the Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs. "This is a reminder that the water in the Yangtze is not unlimited. We cannot bet everything on this river. We need to focus more on conservation."

    Desperate farmers are pumping water from nature reserves, prompting alarm among conservationists about the loss of habitat for several endangered species including the finless porpoise – the last remaining cetacean on the Yangtze after the demise of the baiji dolphin.

    At the Swan Island national nature reserve the depth is three metres lower than last year – which was then a record low. According to Wang Ding, a dolphin expert at the Hydrobiology Institute under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the habitat of a pod of 30 porpoises has halved in length from 21km to 10km.

    "Finless porpoises cannot survive if the level continues to drop," Wang told Xinhua news agency. "If the activity area is reduced they might be stranded on the bank and will die if they can not swim back." There are believed to be 1,000 porpoises left in the river.

    The authorities have attempted cloud seeding to induce rain but a brief shower at the weekend was far from enough. China's meteorological administration sees little prospect of rain before the end of the month and says temperatures in the affected region could rise to 36C.

    To minimise the impact, the Three Gorges authority has been instructed to open the sluice gates. It has already discharged 1.8bn cubic metres of water this month, taking the level of the reservoir below 153m from a peak of 175m.

    The dam's role in the drought has been the subject of a fierce debate. Downstream communities have accused the Three Gorges of holding back too much water to generate power. Environmentalists say this has contributed to the demise of lakes and wetlands, which are already under pressure from urban development and the demands of agriculture. The operators, however, say the reservoir is helping to ease shortages through a timely release of water.

    Last week the state council – China's cabinet – acknowledging that Three Gorges faces "urgent problems" of geological disaster prevention, relocation and ecological protection. It noted the negative impact on downstream water supplies and river transport.

    The dam is not the only hydro-engineering project that has come under scrutiny as a result of the drought. The state's massive south-north water diversion project, which aims to tap the normally moist Yangtze basin to supply arid northern cities like Beijing, is also being called into question because one of its source reservoirs at Danjiangkou has fallen 4m below the minimum requirement for its operation.

    "This is bound to have an impact on the diversion project," said Zhang Junfeng, an environmental activist with Green Earth Volunteers. "Water storage at Danjiangkou reservoir is already at a dead level and I think the situation will get worse year by year because this is partly due to climate change."

    China crisis over Yangtze river drought forces drastic dam measures | Environment | The Guardian
     
  15. Capt.Popeye

    Capt.Popeye Captain SENIOR MEMBER

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    Re: Inside Macau's new $2 billion casino

    China’s Utilities Cut Energy Production, Defying Beijing
    YIYANG, China — It is a power struggle that is causing a power shortage — one that has begun to slow China’s mighty economic growth engine.

    Balking at the high price of coal that fuels much of China’s electricity grid, the nation’s state-owned utility companies are defying government economic planners by deliberately reducing the amount of electricity they produce.

    The power companies say they face financial ruin if the government continues to tightly limit the prices they can charge customers, even as strong demand is sending coal prices to record levels. The chairwoman of one giant utility, China Power International, recently warned that one-fifth of China’s 436 coal-fired power plants could face bankruptcy if the utilities cannot raise rates.

    The utilities’ go-slow tactics include curtailing the planned expansion and construction of power plants, and running plants for fewer hours a day. And in a notable act of passive defiance, the power companies have scheduled an unusually large number of plants to close for maintenance this summer — right when air-conditioning season will reach its peak.

    So far there have been no public confrontations between Beijing officials and utility executives. But the dispute indicates that China’s unique marriage of market competition and government oversight may be starting to fray after three decades of phenomenal economic success.

    “The Chinese electricity companies are firing a shot across the bow, and essentially saying they’re not going to just sit there and take massive losses,” said Jeremy C. Carl, a Stanford University researcher on Chinese energy issues. “It’s almost the equivalent of a corporate sick-out.”

    The official Xinhua news agency reported late Monday that the country’s main electricity distribution company, the State Grid, had warned that power shortages this year could be worse than in 2004, when China had its worst blackouts in decades. That year, the problem involved railroad bottlenecks in getting coal to power plants — an issue largely resolved with the subsequent investments in more rail lines.

    This time, the impasse between government and industry is not the only cause of China’s electricity shortages. Surging electricity demand is also a factor.

    China’s 700 million rural residents have been on a two-year buying spree of electric devices, purchasing hundreds of millions of air-conditioners and other energy-hungry appliances with government subsidies aimed at narrowing the gap in living standards between cities and rural areas.

    In a little-noticed milestone, the latest data from Beijing and Washington shows that China passed the United States last year as the world’s largest consumer of electricity.

    Since March, responding to the power shortages, government officials in six provinces have begun rationing electricity, including here in Hunan province. At least five more provinces are preparing to do so, according to official reports.

    In Yiyang, a town of 360,000 in south-central China, electricity shortages are so severe this spring that many homes and businesses receive power only one day in three. Even gasoline stations in this region are silent more days than not, because the pumps lack electricity.

    Meanwhile, blackouts are starting to slow the nation’s torrid growth of energy-intensive industries like steel, cement and chemicals. Unlike garment makers and other small manufacturers, the big factories cannot easily switch to backyard diesel generators.

    To accommodate businesses that do use diesel back-ups, China last week banned exports of diesel fuel to conserve scarce supplies.

    The power cuts are a reason the year-on-year growth rate of China’s industrial production dipped last month — to 13.4 percent in April, down from 14.8 percent in March — and seems to be continuing to fall.

    The lower productivity of factories, plus high diesel costs for those using generators, is likely to further raise average prices of American imports from China. Prices of Chinese exports are already up 2.8 percent in the last 12 months, after years of gradual decline that helped restrain inflation in the United States.

    As power-deprived factories in China have less demand for raw materials, the impact has rippled around the world among China’s suppliers as well, contributing to 10 percent declines in global prices for commodities like iron ore and copper. That is impinging on the economies of countries like Australia and Brazil, for which China is a big customer of natural resources.

    Looking ahead, China has placed big bets on wind turbines for generating electricity. And despite Japan’s recent nuclear travails, China is also cautiously proceeding with plans to lead the world in the construction of nuclear power plants in the coming decade.

    But coal is still king in China. The country has nearly half of the world’s total coal-fired capacity, and coal plants currently represent 73 percent of this nation’s total generating capacity.

    Hydroelectric power, at 22 percent, is a distant second and has been hampered by droughts this year.

    If Beijing and the utilities can resolve their differences, China plans to build even more coal-powered plants. Doing so would produce another big surge in emissions of greenhouse gases, of which China is already the world’s largest emitter.

    “Only coal can provide new capacity in the time and scale needed,” said David Fridley, a China energy expert at the University of California, Berkeley.

    The idea of recalcitrant utilities balking at Beijing’s dictates might seem to contradict the popular perception of China’s government-guided economy. But while the electric utilities are majority-owned by the government, they are also profit-motivated companies accountable to the other holders of their publicly traded stock. So the power companies’ incentives are not necessarily aligned with those of central planners in Beijing.

    The government, for its part, has imposed a growing array of price controls, including on electricity rates, as it struggles to insulate the Chinese public from inflation. Consumer prices are rising 5.3 percent a year according to official figures, and Chinese and Western economists say the true rate may be nearly double that.

    But coal prices, which the government deregulated in 2008, are rising even faster in China, which is a net importer of coal, despite having its own extensive mining operations.

    Huaneng, China’s biggest electric utility, said last month that electricity rates it charges customers should have been 13 percent higher last year to match the increase in coal prices. But regulators held utility rates essentially flat.

    Spot coal prices in China have surged an additional 20 percent this year — to a record $125 a metric ton for top grades — partly because of floods in Australia’s and Indonesia’s coal fields and partly because Japan is buying more from the global market to offset its lower nuclear power output.

    But Chinese regulators have let electricity prices climb only 2.5 percent this spring. Residential users in China’s cities pay 8.2 cents a kilowatt-hour. That compares to a national average of 11 cents in the United States and 15 cents in the heavily urban mid-Atlantic region. Chinese industrial users in cities are supposed to pay 12 cents a kilowatt-hour, although politically connected businesses receive discounts; the average industrial rate in the United States is 7 cents, and 9 cents in the mid-Atlantic region.

    Big power generators like Huaneng buy nearly half their coal on the spot market and the rest on long-term contracts with prices that rise more slowly.

    The government has put pressure on China’s coal mines, also largely state-owned, to continue supplying power companies with coal at below-market prices under long-term contracts. But the coal mines, which are also profit-oriented operations, have responded with their own form of passive resistance — by sending their cheapest, lowest-quality coal with the most polluting sulfur.

    As a result, many power plants across China are now paying penalties to yet another arm of the government — environmental regulators — for burning the sulfur-spewing coal. That has further added to the utilities’ cost of doing business, said Howard Au, the chief executive of Petrocom Energy, a Hong Kong company that builds coal-blending facilities.

    Trying to help utilities reduce those environmentally and financially costly emissions, Petrocom has built an immense series of gray silos and red conveyor belts at Lianyungang port in northern China to dilute high-sulfur Chinese coal with low-sulfur imported coal.

    Blackouts appear to be the worst in smaller towns like Yiyang here in Hunan, one of China’s largest and most populous provinces. The power shortages are threatening to curb the explosive growth the province has experienced since the opening in late 2009 of a high-speed electric train link to prosperous Guangdong province to the south, which helped companies tap Hunan’s cheaper land and labor force.

    In rationing electricity, Hunan officials have given priority to big cities like Changsha, the provincial capital. Even there, though, industrial districts are blacked out one day in three.

    In Yiyang, meanwhile, multiday blackouts have ruined a tiny restaurant run by Xu Zhanyun, 48, who now must cook meals over lumps of coal instead of his electric stove. “I have so much food in my refrigerators that all went bad,” he said.

    There is running water only every other day because the pumping station requires electricity. And so he must haul water from a well — as he did as a boy, before China’s economy surged.

    In other cities, factories require employees to work at odd hours when electricity is available.

    “They shut down the electricity for a day every three days,” said Jin Jianping, manager of an umbrella factory in Ningbo, in east-central China. “We just arrange night shifts for everyone,” Mr. Jin said. “We all have to work at night every three days now.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/25/business/energy-environment/25coal.html?_r=2&ref=china
     

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