Economy

Chongqing's beautiful city skyline by night. A cruise ship is seen passing by Hongyadong. (Xinhua)

The road ahead for Chongqing (Part II): What surprises will Chongqing bring?

In this two-part article, prominent Hong Kong commentator and columnist Yang Jinlin assesses Chongqing’s strengths such as its strategic location and expertise in smart city building and waste management while sharing his personal reflections on how the megacity has changed and will continue to grow as it moves from one decade to the next. Read about the future of smart cities, and Chongqing’s achievements in waste management in the second part.
Inspired by the region’s thousand years of waterway transportation culture, Raffles City Chongqing’s award-winning design takes the form of powerful sail surging forward on the historic Chaotianmen site where Yangtze and Jialing rivers meet. The photo shows a side profile of Raffles City Chongqing. (CapitaLand)

The road ahead for Chongqing (Part I): What would Raffles say?

In this two-part article, prominent Hong Kong commentator and columnist Yang Jinlin assesses Chongqing’s strengths such as its strategic location and expertise in smart city building and waste management while sharing his personal reflections on how the megacity has changed and will continue to grow as it moves from one decade to the next. Read about Raffles City Chongqing, a 2019 project by CapitaLand Limited, and Chongqing's web in this first part.
A worker on-site the China-Laos railway project, 2 December 2019. (Xinhua)

Laos’ high-speed railway coming round the bend

China's latest BRI railway project through Laos, connecting northern Thailand to China's southwestern province of Yunnan, has the potential to facilitate China's shipment of goods to the markets of mainland Southeast Asia. However, international attention is focused on the more than US$1.5 billion combined debt exposure that Laos has racked up for the railway project, with the prospect of national resources such as "underground mineral resources" being used as collateral for loan financing. Time will tell if the economic benefits for Laos will outweigh the costs.
Presidents Donald Trump and Xi Jinping shake hands in a file photo from the G20 Summit in Osaka in June 2019. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP)

The China-US trust war

Zhu Ying asserts that the nub of the issue in the China-US trade war is a high level of distrust. Tariff tit for tats are just symptoms of that root problem. If not arrested, it will thwart any real progress in the trade talks.
A main street in the business district of Yujiapu is all but deserted on a weekday afternoon.

Roaming China’s "Manhattan” ghost towns

Despite the local government’s best efforts to create “China’s Manhattan” in Tianjin, the Yujiapu and Xiangluowan business areas in Binhai — once looked upon with much promise — have not been as successful as hoped. Lim Zhan Ting visits the developments for a firsthand look.
Power lines in the Philippines. (NGCP)

Can China turn the power off in the Philippines?

Two weeks ago, the Philippine Senate heard that China may end up controlling the power grid in the Philippines. Should the Filipinos be concerned? ISEAS senior fellow Malcolm Cook examines what this might mean for the Philippines.
Alibaba's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Daniel Zhang, Hong Kong Financial Secretary Paul Chan, HKEX Chairman Laura Cha and former Hong Kong chief executive Tung Chee-hwa attend Alibaba Group's listing ceremony at the Hong Kong Stock Exchange (HKEX). (Zhang Wei/CNS)

Alibaba’s Hong Kong listing: Why now? Why Hong Kong?

In a record listing of 2019, Alibaba’s stock price in Hong Kong rose by 6.6% during its first day of trading on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Doing so in the midst of uncertainty in Hong Kong seems risky, but Alibaba’s gambit to reach investors in Asia may just pay off in the long run.
Agricultural e-commerce is helping to lift rural Chinese villages and townships out of poverty. (Meng Dandan/SPH)

Village entrepreneurs' love-hate relationship with e-commerce

There are 225 million rural internet users and over 9.8 million e-businesses in China’s rural areas. With internet sales for agricultural products standing at over 230 billion RMB, e-commerce seems like the perfect way to alleviate poverty in China. Edwin Ong speaks to village entrepreneurs to find out how e-commerce works, the many problems it faces, and its future.
The Chinese flag is raised in front of the Chinese Embassy in Dili, capital of Timor-Leste, May 20, 2002. China was the first country in the world to establish diplomatic relations with Timor-Leste. (Xinhua)

Old Chinese, new Chinese and the China factor in Timor-Leste

China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is extending all over the world, including the little country of Timor-Leste, situated between Indonesia and Australia. How is China’s influence perceived there, and how are the locals reacting? Sim Tze Wei finds out.