Wandering China

An East/West pulse of China's fourth rise from down under.

Australia-China trade no longer just a resources story [Australian Financial Review] #RisingChina #Australia

Australian businesses showing the way to embrace China’s economic rise, can the politicians please catch up? Aussie business demonstrating how to leverage – China’s economic rise during its cruise control mode.

Quick points:
1. China is the largest buyer of Oz minerals and agriculture, fourth biggest customer in manufacturing
2. 35% of all Oz exports in q2 2013

Not since the wool boom of 1950 has Australia been so reliant on a single trade relationship. Even Japan in the early 1970s and late 1980s was not as significant, according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics…

…In the second quarter of 2011, China surpassed Japan as the number one destination for Australian rural exports. Meat, oil seeds, cotton and dairy products have seen growth of between 50 per cent and 400 per cent over the past three years. Australian wheat exports could reach 4 million tonnes this season, making China the number one buyer ahead of Indonesia

More official figures from the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs & Trade on Oz trade with China here.

On the other hand, read this for another perspective from Bloomberg.
Here’s the real crisis in Australia

– – –

Australia-China trade no longer just a resources story
By Angus Grigg and Lisa Murray
Source – Australian Financial Review, published August 21, 2013

20130831-080546.jpg
China is not only the largest buyer of Australian minerals, but also the number one purchaser of agricultural products and has surged past Singapore and South Korea in recent years to be the fourth largest buyer of our manufactured goods.  Photo: Bloomberg

Australia has become more reliant on China as a buyer of its exports than any other trading partner in the past 63 years, surpassing the dependence on Britain after World War II.

In the second quarter of 2013, China bought 35.4 per cent of all Australian exports, a new record high and more than double the level of five years ago.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Chinese Model, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Education, Government & Policy, Influence, International Relations, Modernisation, New Leadership, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade

Opinion: Coming to terms with China’s rise [Straits Times] #RisingChina #InternationalRelations

An Australian + Singapore perspective on the concert of nations in the contemporary multipolar status quo.

Asad Latif with a book review of Australia National University Professor Hugh Whites’s The China Choice: Why We Should Share Power.

This is a thought-provoking book by a first-rate strategic intellectual. Still, some of White’s observations are questionable. Referring to the Monroe Doctrine – under which America reserved for itself a pre-eminent role in the Western Hemisphere that excluded sharing power with others – he implies that China could have a comparable doctrine in Asia. Asad Latif

– – –

Coming to terms with China’s rise
America has three choices – resist China’s rise, withdraw from Asia, or agree to share power
By Asad Latif For The Straits Times
Source – Straits Times, published August 17, 2013 (subscription required)

From left: Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi, Chinese Vice-Premier Wang Yang, US Treasury Secretary Jack Lew and US Deputy Secretary of State William Burns at the end of the 5th United States and China Strategic and Economic Dialogue last month. Officials from the two world powers met to discuss their countries’ relationship. — PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

The China Choice: Why We Should Share Power
Hugh White
publisher Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013, 191 pages

WAR between America and China is a clear and sufficient danger, the Australian strategic thinker Hugh White warns in this book. Both countries are formulating their military plans and building their forces specifically with the other in mind.

They are competing to garner support from other Asian countries. Ominously, they are viewing regional disputes such as in the South China Sea as terrains of rivalry.

Since a major Asian war could be the worst in history, the United States – the region’s preponderant power today – should avoid the calamity. So should China, which is fast catching up with America economically and capable of translating this power into military clout.

However, unlike the US, China does not see itself as the only great power in the international system. It does not seek to oust America from Asia, as America seeks to contain it in Asia. Hence, it is up to Washington to make overtures to Beijing that would prevent a catastrophic war.

Please click here to access the entire article at the Straits Times online (subscription required). Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Chinese Model, Communications, Government & Policy, Hard Power, Ideology, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Media, Modernisation, New Leadership, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Singapore, Soft Power, Straits Times, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, U.S.

Here’s the real crisis in Australia [Bloomberg/The Age] #RisingChina #ChinaAustralia

Australia matters because it’s in the vanguard of nations, rich and poor, who are grappling with how to adjust to a slowing China. William Pesek

Knowing where to look matters.

For instance, Australia offers clean air and freehold land, something none of them no matter where they stand in the social ladder have access to in any abundance in the mainland.

A slowing China may not mean it eats less – adapting to the new Chinese social fabric ahead is important as well. China is not yet done modernizing, And it was only recently it became 50% urbanized. Given suitable conditions, there is yet is a long road of growth ahead.

An extract from Half a Billion: China’s Middle-Income Consumers The Diplomat, May 30, 2013 for case in point.

The pace of change has been extraordinary. As recently as 2000, only 4 percent of urban households in China were middle class; by 2012, that share had soared to over two-thirds. And by 2022, China’s middle class should number 630 million – that is, three-quarters of urban Chinese households and 45 percent of the entire population. The rise of the middle class is essentially an urban phenomenon. Average per capita urban income in China is roughly triple that in the countryside – and there are set to be 170 million new urbanites between now and 2022.

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Here’s the real crisis in Australia
By William Pesek, Bloomberg
Source – The Age, published June 28, 2013

20130701-075456.jpg
‘The key for Australia is to return to the liberalising instincts of the 1980s and 1990s, when there was no behemoth gobbling up resources.’ Photo: Bloomberg

Australia has been called many things: Oz, the land Down Under, the lucky country. But the equivalent of a collateralised-debt obligation?

Canberra can’t be happy to hear its AAA-rated economy likened to one of the reviled investment vehicles that blew up amid the 2008 global crisis. Yet the comparison is being made by some economists, who see the asset underlying Australia – demand from China – beginning to evaporate.

Australia is a microcosm of what awaits the world. How officials respond will offer clues to policy makers everywhere.

No country is more vulnerable to the much-dreaded slowdown in China than resource-rich Australia. The mining boom that fuelled nearly all of its recent growth is nearing a cliff of economic risk.

“Australia is a leveraged time bomb waiting to blow,” says Albert Edwards, Societe Generale’s London-based global strategist. “It is not just a CDO, but a CDO squared. All we have in Australia is, at its simplest, a credit bubble built upon a commodity boom dependent for its sustenance on an even greater credit bubble in China.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, China Dream, Chinese Model, Domestic Growth, Economics, Finance, Government & Policy, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Modernisation, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade

Closer to China by degrees [Guardian] #RisingChina #Australia

Australia looking to shift its sights – how to milk rising China’s next phase of growth. By becoming a confluence of China’s booming middle class hierarchy of needs, perhaps?

The Aussies have taken big steps to show the world it is possible to grow up and smell the roses. There is good business to be done and they know how to do it. The White Australia policy is still in recent memory yet the Chinese have been here since the gold rush days in the 1800s.  Nevertheless for some perspective – Chinese make up  4% of the Australian population in one of the planet’s sparsest spaces with 2.8 people per km/2.

Fast forward 2013, Australia is smart enough to manage both the US and China without greatly offending the other – yet milking both abundant strategic and economic reward from both.

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Closer to China by degrees
As Chinese growth slows, Australia needs to focus on exports in which it may not always enjoy a natural advantage
by Greg Jericho
Source – Guardian, published Monday 24 June 2013

As China's economy slows, Australia needs to focus on education and tourism to draw spending from the country. Photograph: AAP

As China’s economy slows, Australia needs to focus on education and tourism to draw spending from the country. Photograph: AAP

Recent news from China and America has caused some panic around the world and should reinforce the view that the Australian economy of the early 2000s will not come back, regardless of who is in power after 14 September.

The tremors started in America and flowed to China, and in some ways the news out of both was the same. In essence it boiled down to both nations saying that the government could not carry the economy forever.

The chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke, let it be known that if the US economy improves and if the unemployment rate goes below 7% it will start to think about easing its monetary policy by cutting back on buying $85bn worth of bonds each month. He also noted that later the Federal Reserve might think about raising interest rates. Much later – like perhaps two years’ time!

That such news resulted in the US dollar appreciating against all currencies gives you an indicator of how skittish markets can be. This was an announcement of things that might happen if things keep going well. So you can imagine how edgy they would get when news comes out about things happening now – bad things.

And this brings us to China.

Please click here to read the entire article at the Guardian.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Communications, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Education, Ethnicity, Finance, Government & Policy, Hard Power, History, Human Rights, Ideology, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Media, Migrant Workers, Modernisation, New Leadership, Overseas Chinese, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Resources, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, The Guardian, Tourism, Trade

Here flies the dragon: Chinese airlines flex their muscles [the Age] #RisingChina #Aviation

Fruits on reform to enhance connectivity checklist. Planes, working on it. Trains, ticked. Automobiles, working on it.

There is still a long road ahead for rising China to sort it its mass transit issues because quite simplify, its volume for ‘mass’ is one for larger than most countries can only dream off.

The bonus with air travel is the extended amount of positive influence that can be massaged into a short or long haul flight…

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Here flies the dragon: Chinese airlines flex their muscles
Matt O’Sullivan and Peter Cai
Source – The Age, published June 17, 2013

20130618-084905.jpg
Ready for takeoff: Passengers watch a China Southern Airlines plane take off at Shanghai’s Hongqiao International Airport last year. Photo: Reuters

Singapore Airline’s second-in-charge, Mak Swee Wah, summed up what looms on the horizon from China.

“Chinese airlines’ ambition is a reflection of the country’s ambition,” he said during a visit to Australia two weeks ago. “It is taken as a given that they will be growing aggressively.”

There is no doubt China’s airlines are beginning to flex their muscles.

In the case of China Southern, its tentative interest in a strategic stake in Qantas is reflective of a wider foray overseas by Chinese enterprises.

Please click here to read the full article at The Age.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Automotive, Aviation, BBC, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Communications, Culture, Domestic Growth, Government & Policy, Ideology, Influence, Infrastructure, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Modernisation, Peaceful Development, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade

Chinese telco Huawei tries to shake off spy image after NBN ban [ABC News Australia] #RisingChina #Huawei #Telecommunicatioms

So it seems to wearing made in China is fine, or eating out of plates made there does not require too much afterthought. However, using their information infrastructure and equipment to send messages from A to B – requires an ideological leap of faith for some.

Well, it’s not quite time to chuck away the image of China simply being the world’s factory of cheap and good, where excellent margins to those willing to leverage the Chinese model are the key draw. Today, they’re moving up the food chain and it will be a mistake not to take notice.

The land down under is seeing an increasing number of rising China’s foreign vanguard of products tested with the Aussie market prior to going global. This even includes the Great Wall make of SUV and Utility Vehicles.

Rewind – a year back Huawei was barred from tendering for Australia’s National Broadband Network based on intelligence and cyber espionage concerns. See China hits back at NBN bid rejection (The Age, March 29, 2012)

Fast forward a year and check out how Huawei has responds in  the 7.5min video accompanying the article – with ABC’s China correspondent Stephen McDonell.

– Over in the UK – Huawei has become embedded into UK telecoms infrastructure [Financial Times] – June 6, 2013

– Can it look any more ominous than this  (see photo below)? Inside The Chinese Company America Can’t Trust [Time Magazine] – April 15, 2013

Source - DOMINIC NAHR / MAGNUM FOR TIME myth of photographic truth exploited to paint a sinister Huawei

Source – DOMINIC NAHR / MAGNUM FOR TIME
myth of photographic truth exploited to paint a sinister Huawei

That said, it is probably useful to get a clearer picture of what Huawei does:

To read a perspective of Huawei Its annual revenue is more than $35 billion. It is the world’s largest telecom equipment maker. Huawei components feature in networks serving one-third of the world’s population… Huawei is not really a manufacturing company. It makes some of its most sensitive equipment, but it contracts out most routine manufacturing. Just under half – 70,000 – of its staff are directly involved in research and development. It has sought 55,000 patents and been granted 30,000 of them. Thirty thousand of its employees worldwide are non-Chinese. It is really a giant R&D, design, marketing and brand company. A questionable risk to security – Huawei an extraordinary creation (The Australian, May 18, 2013)

See also from WC //

Huawei a victim of its success [China Daily] – May 26, 2013

Huawei calls US Congress report ‘China bashing’ [AFP/Sydney Morning Herald] – October 8, 2012

– – –

Chinese telco Huawei tries to shake off spy image after NBN ban
By China correspondent Stephen McDonell
Source – ABC News Australia, published June 10, 2013

The Chinese company blocked from working on Australia’s National Broadband Network has set its sights on shaking off its image as a stalking horse for Chinese spies.

Telecommunications giant Huawei was banned from tendering for the network as Australia followed the lead of a similar government ban in the United States due to espionage fears.

The company, based in southern China’s Shenzhen province, has refuted claims by the US House Intelligence Committee that the company could potentially build so-called “backdoors” into the likes of the NBN to allow for Chinese eavesdropping.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: ABC News, Advertising, Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, China Dream, Chinese Model, Communications, Cyberattack, Democracy, Domestic Growth, Economics, Finance, Government & Policy, Great Firewall, Greater China, History, Ideology, Influence, Infrastructure, Intellectual Property, International Relations, Internet, Mapping Feelings, Media, military, Modernisation, Peaceful Development, Politics, Population, Public Diplomacy, Reform, Resources, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), Technology, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade, U.K., U.S.

Summit to avoid ‘inevitable’ US-China tensions [The Age] #RisingChina #SinoUS

Torn in a great and powerful friends dilemma, Australia’s strategy to finely leverage both its American and Chinese friendships is a challenging one.

The article below was fed across Aussie broadsheets as it comes from one of two transnational media corporations operating in Australia.

However, great power relations and perceptual tendencies (whether institutionalized, enculturated or indoctrinated) needs a twenty first century update. Using a polarizing and primal set of us and them software to decode meaning in the networked global village – raises the question, what is preventing the update – why are tensions inevitable? By design, consequence or care-lessness?

– – –

Summit to avoid ‘inevitable’ US-China tensions
By Nick O’Malley, US correspondent for Fairfax Media
Source – The Age, published June 6, 2013

The so-called “shirt-sleeves” summit to begin between President Barack Obama and his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping at a glamorous estate in California on Friday will be the first of its kind in half a century, a chance for the two great powers to stave off what some fear to be inevitable tensions.

“It harkens back to Nixon and Kissinger and Mao Zedong and Zou Enlai sitting on overstuffed couches late into the night in Beijing discussing the state of the world,” says the US State Department’s former top Asia official, Kurt Campbell.

Those meetings in 1972 began the Chinese-American diplomatic relationship, a relationship that since then has been marked by mutual mistrust, not aided by the rigid formality of meetings between the two leaders.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, China Dream, Chinese Model, Communications, Culture, East China Sea, Economics, Finance, Government & Policy, Human Rights, Ideology, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Media, Modernisation, Nationalism, New Leadership, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Resources, Social, Soft Power, Strategy, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), Territorial Disputes, The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade, U.S.

The second US century [The Age] #RisingChina #USCentury

Not quite the Chinese Century, according to Clyde Prestowitz

China has been the great story of the past quarter-century and still is a good one. But the miracle days are past. China has followed a growth strategy based on huge investment, sometimes in excess of 50 per cent of GDP. It has now hit a point of diminishing returns. Each new dollar of investment yields a bit less growth than the previous dollar. For a long time the key question has been whether China would get rich before it gets old. The answer increasingly appears to be no.

Perhaps Australia would do well to commission another white paper: Australia in the New American Century.

– – –

The second US century
So you think America is in decline and China on the rise? Think again.
by Clyde Prestowitz
Source – The Age, published May 14, 2013

Source - The Age Illustration: Jim Pavlidis.

Source – The Age Illustration: Jim Pavlidis.

Conventional wisdom says that America is in decline, that the American century is over, and that the future belongs to the rest, especially the rest in Asia. Predictions that China’s gross domestic product will soon surpass that of the US to become the world’s largest economy are legion.

Prominent authors such as CNN commentator Fareed Zakaria and former diplomat Kishore Mahbubani have rushed to publish books predicting a historic shift in the global balance of power as a result of this change in relative share of global GDP. And the Australian government recently indicated its agreement with this thinking by moving to redeploy its resources and reorient its policies in response to a white paper on ”Australia in the Asian Century”.

Yet, there is growing evidence that all of this analysis may be a bit premature and that America is not only coming back but that this century may well wind up being another American century.

Please click here to read the full article at the Age.

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Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Ideology, Influence, International Relations, Peaceful Development, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Social, Soft Power, The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, U.S.

5% of foreign reserves – ‘Australia to buy Chinese government debt’ [Financial Times] #RisingChina #Australia #ForeignReserves

Australia broadens relations with its top export destination by investing 5% of foreign reserves in Chinese government bonds.

Earlier this month, Australia became only the third country to establish a direct currency trading link with China, after the US and Japan. The RBA and the People’s Bank of China also set up a currency swap facility in March 2012. The RBA had around A$38.2bn ($39bn) in foreign reserves at the end of March. Financial Times, April 24, 2013

– – –

Australia to buy Chinese government debt
By Josh Noble in Hong Kong
Source – Financial Times, published April 24, 2013

Source - Haver Analytics

Source – Haver Analytics

The Australian central bank plans to invest about 5 per cent of its foreign reserves in Chinese government bonds, in the latest move to build closer economic ties between the two countries.

“This decision to invest in China is an important one. It reflects the broader economic relationship between China and Australia and our increasing financial ties”, Philip Lowe, deputy governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia, said in a speech on Wednesday in Shanghai. “It provides greater diversification of our investments and will help with our understanding of the Chinese financial markets.”

Earlier this month, Australia became only the third country to establish a direct currency trading link with China, after the US and Japan. The RBA and the People’s Bank of China also set up a currency swap facility in March 2012. The RBA had around A$38.2bn ($39bn) in foreign reserves at the end of March.

Please click here to read the rest of the article at its source.

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Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Economics, Finance, Financial Times, Government & Policy, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Peaceful Development, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Strategy, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities, Trade

Growing breed of Chinese moguls Down Under [Straits Times] #RisingChina #OverseasChinese #Australia

Chinese moguls keeping a toe down under.

‘Australia has more links to China’s tycoons than any other country except the United States, according to the compiler of the Hurun list.’

– – –

Growing breed of Chinese moguls Down Under
Based in China, they have big investments in Australia and some have political clout as well
By Jonathan Pearlman, In Sydney
Source – Straits Times, published April 28, 2013

Xu Rongmao. --  PHOTO: by APPLE DAILY

Xu Rongmao. —
PHOTO: by APPLE DAILY

When a rare chance arose to buy a World Heritage-listed resort island in the Great Barrier Reef last year, Australian-Chinese media mogul William Han decided to invest in paradise.

“Aussie Bill”, as he is known, outbid 200 others for the 584ha Lindeman Island off the coast of Queensland from Club Med, shelling out A$12 million (S$15.3 million) for it. He now plans to spend another A$500 million at least to turn it into a high-end resort for Asian holidaymakers.

Mr Han is one of a growing breed of Chinese-Australian moguls, several of whom are on China’s top 1,000 rich list compiled by the Hurun Report magazine.

Shanghai-based property mogul Xu Rongmao was ranked No. 12 last year with an estimated worth of US$4.7 billion (S$5.8 billion). An Australian citizen, he has invested in properties in Sydney and Darwin and educated both his children in Australia.

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Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Channel News Asia, Chinese Model, Chinese overseas, Economics, Finance, Greater China, Influence, International Relations, Overseas Chinese, Peaceful Development, Public Diplomacy, Social, Soft Power, Straits Times, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Australian, The Chinese Identity

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