Economy

A farmer harvests cabbage at Huarong county in Hunan province, at the border of Hubei on 5 March 2020. (Noel Celis/AFP)

The impact of Covid-19 on the agriculture sector in China

Vincent Martin, Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO) representative in China and North Korea, shares his thoughts on the Chinese government’s efforts to limit the impact of Covid-19 on agriculture and food security in China. He remains sanguine that the country has enough wind in its sails to see it through this tough period and embark firmly on new beginnings.
Cambodian workers exit their factory as they take a lunch break in Phnom Penh, March 2, 2020. Cambodia's multi-billion-dollar garment industry is at risk of chain disruption from the Covid-19 breakout, as its impacts hammer on Southeast Asia's key industries. (Tang Chhin Sothy/AFP)

Wake-up call for ASEAN countries: Curb over-reliance on China and seize opportunities of global supply chain restructuring

After this battle with the Covid-19 coronavirus, each ASEAN country should step up its emergency preparedness and national resilience capacities in dealing with similar pandemics. But health concerns aside, the outbreak also highlights the region’s high reliance on China in economics and trade. As global supply chains realign in the wake of the crisis, Southeast Asian countries should implement bold domestic reforms and vigorously develop their manufacturing sectors to be in the best position to reap the benefits.
An elderly person wearing a protective masks sits in front of shuttered stores near a hutong neighborhood in Beijing, China, on 18 March 2020. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

Falling revenue, absent staff... Tough road ahead for China's SMEs

Micro, small, and medium enterprises assets account for 77% of the total assets of Chinese enterprises, while their annual revenue contributes 68% of the total amount of annual revenue of Chinese enterprises. Chen Jing, Lianhe Zaobao’s Shanghai correspondent reports that as the coronavirus outbreak in China eases off, SMEs in China are doing their level best to get their businesses up and running again. But the way forward looks to be all uphill.
Blackstone's acquisition of SOHO China is a win-win for both sides. (Brendan McDermid/REUTERS)

Blackstone's acquisition of SOHO China: A win-win deal

Cai Enze analyses the anticipated gains of American private equity investment company Blackstone taking Chinese property developer SOHO China private. ThinkChina also takes a look at SOHO, and the high-profile couple behind it.
Workers in protective suits after loading travellers onto buses outside the New China International Exhibition Centre, near Beijing Capital Airport in Beijing, 17 March 2020. The exhibition center is being used as a registration and screening centre for travellers arriving in Beijing before transferring them to quarantine locations. (Greg Baker/AFP)

From supply chain to BRI, a super-connected China impacts the world

From the global industrial chain to the Belt and Road Initiative, China's interactions with the world is markedly changing due to the Covid-19 outbreak. East Asian Institute’s senior research fellow Yu Hong says that as the impacts of globalisation are magnified during the pandemic, the world will be reconsidering the consequences of its over-reliance on and deeply entrenched links with China. But are alternatives available?
A pedestrian wearing a face mask walks on an overpass with an electronic board showing stock information, following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Lujiazui financial district in Shanghai, March 2020. (Aly Song/REUTERS)

China’s economy in worst shape in 30 years

The Covid-19 pandemic has brought China’s economy to a low point. Economic forecasts for the quarter and the whole year have been revised downward, and the continued spread of the coronavirus across the world will not help the situation. Zaobao correspondent Chen Jing speaks to the experts on what to expect in the next few months.
A supporter of US President Donald Trump wears an oversize "Make America Great Again Hat" as he waits for the start of a "Keep America Great" rally at Southern New Hampshire University Arena on 10 February 2020 in Manchester, New Hampshire. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images/AFP)

Covid-19: US needs to revive its manufacturing industry and rebuild itself

US-based academic Hu Hao warns that the US needs to diversify its supply chains and revive its manufacturing industry, particularly in the medical sector, if it does not wish to let its major competitor China have undue leverage during times of emergency and beyond.
Hyundai Motor cars parked for shipping in the southeastern port of Ulsan, South Korea, February 2020. The factory was slowed down by a lack of parts with the coronavirus outbreak crippling China's industrial output. (YONHAP/AFP)

Restoring global supply chains at 'the speed of China’

Chinese financial commentator Tan Haojun adopts a positive and determined view when he says while the coronavirus situation has affected China’s economic development and role in global supply chains, this is short-term — much like recovering from the common cold. All things considered, China is already recovering at a breakneck pace and predictions that decoupling from China will hasten are much exaggerated.
Oil and gas tanks at an oil warehouse at a port in Zhuhai. (Aly Song/REUTERS)

The most likely outcome of the BRI

Professor Andrew Delios shares the possible outcomes of the BRI, from fulfilling strategic objectives to the Red Scare Scenario. To find out which is the most likely, he says we must first consider if the BRI is just a series of road, rail and ocean linkages across nations. And what is the point of a route of transportation, without a destination? He finds the answers in China's economic zones.