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January 19, 2020

China unveils sweeping plan to reduce single-use plastic by 2025

China’s top economic planner said it would cut the production and use of plastic over the next five years, helping reduce one of the world’s biggest sources of plastic pollution.By the end of this year, non-degradable plastic bags will be banned in places such as supermarkets and shopping malls in major cities, as well as in the country’s ubiquitous food delivery services, according to a plan released by the National Development and Reform Commission on Sunday.China will significantly reduce…
January 19, 2020

China’s financial credit database of 1 billion people, 28 million companies gets an upgrade

China’s central bank has launched an updated version of its credit information system covering 1 billion individuals and more than 28 million corporate clients, which it says will provide more accurate profiles of loan applicants.The upgraded system – which is used by the nation’s lenders to evaluate potential clients’ creditworthiness – went online on Sunday. The upgrades include improvements to the information gathering and processing functions, as well as the technical framework and security…
January 19, 2020

Chinese provinces lower growth targets after central government takes over task of compiling GDP figures

More than two thirds of Chinese provinces have lowered their growth targets for the year after the central government said it would start compiling provincial GDP totals.The move comes as the leadership’s focus moves towards “high-quality growth” and addressing technological and demographic challengesChina’s National Bureau of Statistics has said it would start to calculate provincial GDP figures starting this year to avoid over-reporting by local officials.This led to a long-standing anomaly…
January 19, 2020

China’s provinces lower growth targets after central government takes over task of compiling GDP figures

More than two thirds of China’s provinces have lowered their 2020 growth targets after the central government said it would start compiling provincial gross domestic product totals.The move comes as the leadership’s focus moves towards “high-quality growth” and addressing technological and demographic challengesChina’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has said it would start to calculate provincial gross domestic product (GDP) figures starting this year to avoid over-reporting by local…
January 18, 2020

China’s plan to slash health care costs sees global pharmaceutical firms crowded out of market

China’s biggest-ever round of drug price cuts saw global pharmaceutical firms losing most of the nationwide contracts to local rivals, as Beijing aggressively pushes to contain health care costs by an average of 53 per cent decline in latest bulk purchase.Among 33 commonly used medicines in a bidding exercise on Friday, some moneymakers for global pharmaceutical companies had the deepest cuts, with the biggest one being as high as 93 per cent as shown in a government-funded medical procurement…
January 17, 2020

Huawei’s ties with Iran known to HSBC before Meng Wanzhou arrest, documents show

The Canadian extradition proceedings of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou hinge on allegations she made a fraudulent presentation to HSBC in 2013 over the technology giant’s business ties in Iran, but recently revealed documents show the bank had been aware of Huawei’s business relationships in the Middle Eastern country for years earlier.The documents seen by the South China Morning Post show communications between HSBC staff and Huawei employees about the bank accounts of a company…
January 17, 2020

HSBC aware of Huawei’s ties with Iran unit before arrest of founder’s daughter, documents show

The Canadian extradition proceedings of Huawei Technologies former chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou hinge on allegations she made a fraudulent presentation to HSBC in 2013 over the technology giant’s business ties in Iran, but recently revealed documents show the bank had been aware of Huawei’s business relationships in the Middle Eastern country for years earlier.The documents seen by the South China Morning Post show communications between HSBC staff and Huawei employees about the bank…
January 17, 2020

China’s birth rate decline and economic growth slump present new challenges after trade war deal

China's economic growth last year slumped to its slowest pace in 29 years, while the number of births fell to a near-six decade low, highlighting two key long-term challenges facing the country just days after the signing of a partial trade deal with the United States.Gross domestic product (GDP) growth was 6.1 per cent in 2019, a year in which the Chinese economy was hammered by US tariffs. After months of negotiations and escalating duties on each other’s goods, China and the United States…
January 17, 2020

US-China tech war to be ‘defining issue of this century’, despite signing of phase one trade deal

Forget the phase one deal, a bitter superpower tech war will overshadow any minor progression in US-China relations emanating from this week’s trade agreement.That is the message contained in a new report to be released on Monday, the author of which says that tariffs are “a subset in a much larger, overarching, systemic rivalry between two superpowers, which is the defining issue of this century”.“The trade deal, which is focused on tariffs, is in a completely different space,” said Alex Capri…
January 17, 2020

China’s birth rate falls to near 60-year low, with 2019 producing fewest babies since 1961

The number of newborn babies in China sunk to a near six-decade low last year, reinforcing worries about the cost of a lower birth rate on the economy and the country’s ability to support its rapidly ageing population in the year ahead.Chinese mothers gave birth to 14.65 million babies last year, down from 15.23 million in 2018, according to data from National Bureau of Statistics released on Friday. Last year’s figure was the lowest since 1961.China’s overall population continued to grow,…
January 17, 2020

China GDP growth last year was 6.1 per cent, slowest rate for 29 years

China’s economy grew by 6.1 per cent in 2019, the lowest annual growth rate for 29 years, the National Bureau of Statistics announced on Friday.The gross domestic product (GDP) figure came in a year in which the Chinese economy was hammered by US tariffs as a result of the trade war. The new data comes a day after China and the United States signed a long-waited phase one deal on Wednesday, marking something of a ceasefire in the trade dispute between the world’s two largest economies.However,…
January 16, 2020

Asean, RCEP trade partners unlikely beneficiaries from US-China trade war, Deloitte economist says

An unexpected effect of the US-China trade war has been an apparent acceleration of the process to forge an Asian trading bloc that does not include United States, according to Deloitte China’s chief economist Xu Sitao.After a renewed push from China, an initial Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) agreement was finally reached in November 2019 after six years of talks, with the deal that would create the world’s largest free trade bloc possibly being signed in November 2020,…
January 16, 2020

EU to review US-China deal for any WTO challenge, says trade commissioner Phil Hogan

This story is published in a content partnership with POLITICO. It was originally reported by Doug Palmer on politico.com on January 16, 2020.The European Union could challenge the new US-China trade deal at the World Trade Organisation if it determines the agreement violates its trading rights, EU Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan said today.“We haven't analysed the document in detail, but we will,” Hogan said in response to a question at an event hosted by the Centre for Strategic and…
January 16, 2020

EU trade commissioner Phil Hogan criticises US-China phase one trade deal, claims it is unlikely to boost competitiveness or jobs

The European Union’s top trade official on Thursday dismissed the new US-China deal as negative for competitiveness and jobs, underscoring the cautious reception the “phase one” pact has got from European officials and businesses.“The devil is in the detail,” EU Trade Commissioner Phil Hogan told a conference in London on Thursday, adding that so far, the details were “a bit sketchy”. Hogan was speaking by video link from Washington where he is meeting US officials this week. He hopes to…
January 16, 2020

Trade war: China, US face tough reality ahead after the pomp of phase one deal signing

A US-China trade deal that had long been in the works was signed with all the pomp we have come to expect from President Donald Trump, and for some the setting was fitting as this has been billed as a victory for style over substance.While Trump proclaimed it “a momentous step – one that has never been taken before with China”, it had long been clear that this phase one deal would be lightweight in the grand scheme of trade agreements, which often run to thousands of pages compared to just 86…
January 16, 2020

China to maintain ‘prudent’ monetary policy given positive impact of US trade deal, central bank says

China’s central bank said on Thursday that the positive impact of the just-signed phase one trade deal with the United States will allow it to continue its “prudent” monetary policy this year, with only “limited” room for further cuts in banks’ reserve requirements.“We were glad to see that the phase one trade deal was signed. It’s a good move and market expectations have seen a dramatic improvement. It is certainly a good thing,” said Zhou Xuedong, spokesman and director of the general office…
January 16, 2020

China phase one deal with US will allow chance for domestic reform, despite short-term sting

China’s phase one trade deal with the United States could generate short-term pain for the economy, but help it in the long run by creating a stable trading environment and introducing competition to its increasingly rigid state-led development model, officials and analysts said.The long-awaited trade deal, which requires that China significantly boost purchases of US products and improve intellectual property protection, put the brakes on an 18-month trade war that has disrupted global supply…
January 16, 2020

US-China phase one trade deal could boost A shares as earnings growth comes through, analysts say

A phase one trade deal between the United States and China could be another positive for the latter’s A-share market this year, as earnings growth is expected to be strong in sectors ranging from the software industry to the financial sector, according to investment strategists and economists.The truce in an 18-month fight between the world’s two biggest economies should ease some of the pressure on Beijing and allow China to move forward with a number of reforms, including addressing the…
January 16, 2020

China’s middle class frets the ‘good times’ are over amid sliding house prices, stagnant wages

While the US-China trade war has been on the lips of politicians and analysts from Beijing to Washington, millions of middle class Chinese are increasingly anxious about a problem closer to home: the sliding value of their incomes and assets as the country’s breakneck economic growth begins to stutter.China’s gross domestic product (GDP) is expected to grow to 100 trillion yuan (US$14.4 trillion) in 2020, with per capita GDP having already passed the US$10,000 mark last year, both much to the…
January 16, 2020

China hails phase one trade war deal signing, but remains relatively tight-lipped on the details

China awoke on Thursday morning to news of a phase one trade deal with the United States signed overnight, hailed as “win-win” by Vice-Premier Liu He, but not all the details of what the agreement contained were available inside China.State media outlet CCTV and its English-language network CTGN provided live coverage of the signing ceremony between Liu and US President Donald Trump after midnight local time. However, the simultaneous translation cut out when Vice-President Mike Pence, a known…