Trade

Chinese President Xi Jinping (right) welcomes German Chancelor Olaf Scholz at the Grand Hall in Beijing, China, on 4 November 2022. (Kay Nietfeld/Pool/AFP)

Scholz's Asia month: Preparing Germany for a non-Western-centric world

Thorsten Benner of the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi) in Berlin points out that unlike former Chancellor Merkel, current German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has invested a lot of time into building closer connections with Asian partners. This fits in with his worldview of multiple emerging global powers, and the need to foster resilience, diversification and “de-risking” in achieving economic security vis-a-vis China.
Semiconductor chips are seen on a circuit board of a computer in this illustration picture taken 25 February 2022. (Florence Lo/Illustration/File Photo/Reuters)

Has the US crushed China’s hopes for self-sufficiency in the chip industry?

China’s semiconductor industry has been dealt with multiple hurdles in the past year, with the latest roadblock coming from the US’s ban on chip export to China in October. Manufacturers, executives and technical experts now face the difficult decision of staying in this growing sector in China or in the US. Will China find a way around this new restriction?
People walk at an alley in Qianmen street in Beijing, China, on 2 October 2022. (Noel Celis/AFP)

Can China really catch up with the US?

China has great motivation to achieve its China Dream of catching up with and surpassing the US. Not only would this wipe away its century of humiliation but also prove the superiority of socialism. However, its actions could make achieving its dream that much harder.
A worker walks on a scaffolding at a construction site of an apartment building under refurbishment in Beijing, China, 20 July 2022. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

Export slowdown reveals cracks in one of China’s economic pillars

With China’s economy already facing drags from consumer spending and the real estate sector, the slowdown in goods exports poses a significant problem as they make up a sizeable share of the country's GDP. Will Beijing reconsider some of the policies such as its zero-Covid policy, tech sector crackdown, and restrictions on real estate?
Local people are seen on their vehicles as they get stuck in traffic while the VIP convoys pass during the ASEAN foreign ministers meeting in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, 3 August 2022. (Soe Zeya Tun/Reuters)

China: Needed but not well-loved in Cambodia

Cambodian commentator Sokvy Rim explains why recent Chinese immigrants in Cambodia are viewed with suspicion and even some dislike despite major Chinese investment flows in Cambodia and related economic benefits.
A man cheers to people marching through the streets of Miami, Florida, to commemorate last year's historic protests in Cuba on 11 July 2022. (Chandan Khanna/AFP)

Chinese economics professor: Immigrants do not take away your job

The belief that immigrants would ruin the employment market is unfounded, says economics professor Li Jingkui. With bold and ambitious entrepreneurial spirits, immigrants are more likely to be “job creators”, rather than “job takers”, while the resulting increase in demand for goods and services even supports economic growth.
A man walks along a street in Beijing on 31 August 2022. (Noel Celis/AFP)

China’s rise is changing the liberal trade order into a power game

Academic Naoise McDonagh asserts that a key question posed by China’s rise is whether the liberal international order can remain rules-based, when its second largest member is a socialist market economy operating on different rules that it increasingly seeks to apply externally.
Cargo trucks work inside a container yard in Keelung, Taiwan, 7 January 2022. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

ASEAN and Taiwan: Cooperation opportunities amid diplomatic constraints

While there are risks involved in pursuing deeper cooperation with Taiwan beyond trade and economics, ASEAN should not shy away from exploring possibilities even while abiding by the "one China" policy. This is where greater trade cooperation and city-to-city linkages could come in.
(Left to right) Tunisia's President Kais Saied, Japan's Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi, and United Nations' Deputy Secretary-General Amina J. Mohamed applaud during a press conference after the closing session of the eighth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD) in Tunisia's capital Tunis on 28 August 2022. (Fethi Belaid/AFP)

TICAD8: Can Japan exert its influence in Africa amid great power politics?

Japanese academic Mitsugi Endo gives his assessment of the recent Eighth Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD8) in Tunisia. While it was announced that Japan's public and private sectors combined would make investments in Africa amounting to US$30 billion over the next three years, the impact of great power politics in Africa, including by players such as China and Russia, may have an impact on Japan's future engagement with the continent.