November 30, 2009
Trade War: China Imposes Anti-Dumping Duties on US TDI Chemicals
Beijing's Ministry of Commerce imposed anti-dumping duties for an additional five years on Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) raw materials used in the making of polyurethane products with wide applications across different industries. The duties are also imposed on TDI imports from (South) Korea and Japan. The ruling comes from a complaint filed back in 2003 by domestic Chinese producers Hebei Cangzhou Dahua, BlueStar Chemical, and Gansu Yinguang and Yantai Juli Polyurethane Co., Ltd.....
Labels: foreign relations, foreign trade, free trade, imports
No Word on Yuan at EU-China Summit
The EU is now China's number 1 trading partner. For the EU China is now number 2 after the USA. EU imports from China are down in the great recession to just over $65 billion euros in the 1st Half of 2009. Overall China accounts for 17% of all EU imports. As in the USA China is a growing market for exports accounting for 7% of EU exports, up one percent from 2008. The top EU exporters to China are Germany, France, Italy, UK, and Netherlands - in that order. While the EU overall has a trade deficit with China, the smallest individual deficits are in Germany and France which have the healthiest trade relations with China. Click here for more detail on EU-China trade
Labels: currencies, euro, foreign relations, foreign trade, forex, yuan
November 25, 2009
Gobble Gobble: China Turkey Imports Up 108% in 5 Years
According to data from the USA Foreign Agricultural Service
and other sources, Chinese consumption and imports of turkey meat is mushrooming from around 12,000 metric tons in 2005 to an anticipated 60,000 or more tons next year! China is already the world's number 5 export market for turkeys. Domestic production is increasing rapidly, as usually happens in China trade, but there is no way domestic farms can match demand. And as the delicate flavor of America's most famous native bird becomes more familiar with Chinese it is likely that turkeys will grow in demand. The USA is the world's number 1 producer and exporter of turkeys. Will America capture China as a new and important export market for turkey?
Happy Thanksgiving! Sinomania! will take a break for our national holiday. Back soon....
Labels: exports, food fda, foreign trade
Reunification Watch: Chinese Carmakers to Revive Taiwan Auto Industry
Auto associations from China and Taiwan met in Taipei this week and agreed to cooperate in enhancing Taiwan's lagging auto industry
. Private automaker Chery Automobile is already producing its A3 sedan in Taiwan and plans to introduce the larger A5 and A6 soon. Chery wants to work with Taiwan carmaker Auto21 according to reports. Yulon Motor, one of Taiwan's top automakers, signed an agreement this month with Geely Automotive to develop an economy car next year.
Taiwan's auto industry is dominated by a few firms, including Yulon, that are all part owned by Japanese auto majors including a tie-up with Ford/Mazda. While Taiwan carmakers excel at parts production the domestic industry suffers from declining sales and a saturated domestic market. The Chinese joint ventures will be aimed at exporting back to the mainland and also exporting from Taiwan to foreign markets.....
Labels: automobiles, chinese autos, reunification, taiwan
November 24, 2009
Chinese to ReOpen African Mines
Beijing in Renewed Push for Latin America Resources
Next stop Brazil where Jia and his delegation will meet with President Lula da Silva. China is now Brazil's largest trade partner surpassing the United States. But the USA remains the biggest investor in Latin America despite all the promises of Chinese investment. China also lags the EU in terms of investment in the region.....
Labels: foreign relations, foreign trade, oil, peak oil
November 23, 2009
Ahead of Copenhagen China Led Group of 77 Seeks Compulsory Licensing
Chinese alternative energy plans and programs could reap huge potential profits if a proposal put forth by China and India is successful. In advance of the Copenhagen Climate conference next month, the so-called Group of 77 - a loose alignment of developing nations currently led by China - is proposing that new clean tech technologies be available under "compulsory licensing"
. Under that arrangment new technologies in alternative energy would be patent free and nations such as China could begin domestic production of foreign designed products at will. The proposal has little chance but it illustrates the political standoff brewing over "global warming" and climate change....
Labels: alternative energy, foreign relations, politics
Dongfeng Motors in Serbia Venture as Guangzhou Auto Show Opens
November 20, 2009
China-Iran Ties Grow Despite Politics
Referring to President Obama’s visit to China Grand Ayatollah of Iran Hamedani this week accused the Chinese of two-facedness and said Iran should not be deceived by their “strategic smiles”. But Iranians and Chinese continue to grow closer each day. Just this week it was announced that Tehran had approved a 2007 agreement by Sinopec to develop the Yadavaran oil field
, one of the largest untapped fields in the world with 3.2 billion barrels of recoverable oil. Under a buy-back arrangement, Sinopec will get delivery of 110,000 barrels of oil initially and large amounts of natural gas.
Meanwhile today in Shanghai the Iran-China Joint Chamber of Commerce opened a trade center
, Iran's first foreign commerce center. The center will focus on Chinese-Iranian small and medium size business ventures. Thanks to robust trade in oil and gas, Iran-China trade grew to $27 billion (US dollars) last year.
And an unnamed Chinese bank will develop a major freeway that will link the Iranian capital to the Caspian Sea
. The Tehran-Shomal freeway has been dreamed of since the 1960s but was considered impossible because it must tunnel through the Alborz mountains that block Tehran from easy access to the Caspian. The Chinese project will build 30 twin tunnels and create a 4-lane separated freeway to the coast. The region has great potential for tourism development and may lay a foundation to exploit the resources of the southern Caspian Sea.....
Labels: asian energy security grid, energy security, foreign relations, foreign trade, iran
USA Soybean Exports to China Surge 42.85%
"Chinese demand seems insatiable" according to a US broker
and data from the US Agriculture Department
reveal that year-on-year exports of soybeans to China rose almost 6 million metric tons in October. China is by far the largest market for American soybeans. Last year China moved ahead of the EU as the USA's number 4 agricultural export destination. China has consistenly been one of the top 10 markets for US agriculture since 1994.
Brazil is expected to significantly ramp up production and export of soybeans over the medium term. Chinese soybean imports are expected to account for 40% of global demand by 2011 (see graph). If the tit-for-tat trade spats with China continue America could lose a valuable export market to Brazil....
Labels: chinese trade, food fda, foreign trade
November 19, 2009
Heating Up: Chinese Electric Rates Increase
US Congress Declares Trade War on China
The US-China Economic and Security Review Commission of the US Congress released its 2009 annual report
today. Timed to match Obama's return from China, the assessment is unusually bellicose in its condemnation of all things Chinese.
The report not only blames China for the current financial crisis but hints that China will be responsible for the next one! The Commission dismisses the onesie-twosie approach with WTO trade disputes as too "industry specific" and "time consuming" and for not addressing "broader issues." Instead the Commission warns "the U.S. government will have to find alternative venues." The only such alternative suggested, however, is the continual demand that China appreciate its currency.
The report's 381 pages feature scary examples where China threatens to overtake the USA supported by testimony and research the Commission paid for from organizations such as the Heritage Foundation and defense contractors well known for their established anti-Beijing views.
The Commission itself is headed by a who's who of anti-China "bomb throwers" including Larry Wortzel of the Heritage Foundation appointed by disgraced former House Speaker Dennis Hastert. Wortzel appears to be a permanently entrenched holdover from the W years - after two terms he can no longer be Chairman but is now Vice Chairman until end 2010. What the Commission and Congress cannot face is that no amount of sabre rattling will force a "Plaza Accord" with Beijing. In its search for "alternative venues" with China perhaps Congress should consider cooperation and collaboration....
Labels: anti-china, chinese trade, congress, foreign relations, free trade, propaganda
November 18, 2009
China TV Ad Rates Up 18%
The annual advertising auction of China Central Television (CCTV), the sole national TV network in China (as opposed to the many Provincial-wide TV networks, independent TV broadcasters, and foreign satellite channels), just concluded with a record $1.6 billion (US dollars) in ad buys for 2010
. One of the biggest prizes is the ad slot for CCTV's prime time drama hour which was won by Hong Kong listed Mengniu Dairy (HK:2319
). Mengniu previously sponsored the hugely popular Super Girl talent contest. Domestic brands won over foreign brands. An interesting look behind the scenes can be found at the Advertising Age website
Labels: chinese stocks
USA to Cooperate with China in Space
An important shift in the USA federal government treatment of Beijing's space program may occur in the near future. Obama commented after his private meeting with Chinese President Hu at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing that the USA and China would "engage in cooperation in space exploration
." According to Space.com the heads of each nations's space agencies will exchange visits next year
. There is no word from NASA on these developments but if they occur it could set the stage for real interaction on space instead of the pointless rivalry in place today. What is needed is for China to be brought into the International Space Station rather than build a space station of their own. The ban on Chinese participation is purely political at the behest of suprisingly few politicians (Republican Dana Rohrabacher
of Orange County, Calfiornia) and lobbying interests (Lockheed-Martin)....
Labels: foreign relations, politics, space program
November 17, 2009
NATO-China Relationship Expanding?
Meanwhile opposition is building to the Afghanistan conflict in key NATO nations with dickering back and forth over whether Obama's man in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, really needs 40,000 additional troops. The US Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry is openly against a surge in troops. Public support is already against the war in key NATO states the UK, Germany, and Canada. Yet NATO says it will not leave until its job is done.
Yesterday in Beijing, Presidents Obama and Hu met behind closed doors and discussed (among other hot button issues) Afghanistan which shares a small border with China west of the Karakoram Highway. According to the joint official statement
of that meeting the USA and China support the efforts to combate terrorism in Afghanistan. Could a role for China in NATO's occupation of Afghanistan finally be underway?....
Labels: foreign relations, new world order
November 16, 2009
China Offshores Solar Jobs to USA
Chinese solar major Suntech Power Holdings (NYSE:STP
) announced today it finally chose a location for its American manufacturing plant - Phoenix, Arizona
. The precise location has yet to be determined but it will be somewhere in the greater Phoenix metro area. The state of Oregon was pursuing the plant but Arizona won out with a variety of renewable energy policies and business incentives. Initially the plant will be up to 100,000 square feet and potentially provide work for 250 employees. Suntech plans to have production as soon as third quarter 2010....
Labels: alternative energy, chinese stocks, foreign relations
Wishful Thinking on China
This writer hoped that President Obama would have his eyes wide open for his first trip to China - take it in, allow himself to see past the warped perceptions nearly every American has about the Celestial Empire. Sadly, he started his visit with yet another lecture on "human rights,” now defined by the USA as uncensored Internet access. Obama told a crowd of perky Fudan University students in Shanghai
that: "...freedoms of expression and worship -- of access to information and political participation -- we believe are universal rights." As the USA continues to run the infamous Guantanamo detention camps, CIA black jails, and conduct military occupations around the world, it remains absurd to lecture other countries on "human rights". Not long before his death, Nixon - architect of the rapprochement with China - said that it was time to drop "human rights" as a wedge issue with China. The issue may have had some leverage in Clinton’s first term but is meaningless today. The Chinese people are not going to rise up and overthrow their government because the websites of state-controlled (BBC) and wealthy conservatives’ media in Western nations are sometimes blocked on the mainland.
Labels: communist china, human rights, obama
November 13, 2009
TRADE WAR: Sixty Percent Duty on Chinese Copper Pipe Sought
If it's late Friday in Washington, time to slap countervailing duties on Chinese imports. Today's announcement from the quasi-independent federal Internationl Trade Commission says an American industry is damaged by seamless refined copper pipe and tube from China
. The products are used in HVAC installations and are made at 12 plants in the USA employing 3,166 workers. Imports come from many countries but China is the number 1 foreign supplier although total imports account for less than a third (28.5%) of America's consumption of the goods. The ITC's ruling was unanimous and allows the Commerce Department to determine anti-dumping duties, reports say an extra 60.5% on Chinese imports. The basis for this determination seems flimsy given the small scale of the domestic industry and the even smaller impact of imports from any one foreign country. It is no surprise that this probe on Chinese imports - the 12th so far this year - comes as data released today shows the USA-China trade gap continues to rise....
Labels: foreign relations, foreign trade, free trade
Chinese Scientists Uncover Mysteries of the Liver
November 12, 2009
Nuclear Power to Generate 22% Electricity in China by 2050
Much has been written on this blog about Beijing's desire to see China emulate France and Japan in using nuclear energy to generate a substantial portion of the nation's electricity needs. China National Nuclear Corp. and China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group are steaming ahead with domestic production of AP1000 nuclear reactors under a technology-transfer agreement with Westinghouse. Three new AP1000 nuclear plants will begin construction soon in inland provinces
- the first such facilities away from the Chinese coast - at locations in Hunan, Hubei, and Jiangxi Provinces. The plants may go online as soon as 2015. According to Ye Qizhen, one of China's foremost nuclear experts, Beijing hopes to have 400 Gigawatt of operational nuclear power by 2050....
Labels: An Yue Jiang, electricity, investment, nuclear
US West Coast Ports Band Together for China Trade
The World Shipping Summit 2009
is underway in Qingdao, Shandong Province, and the big 5 port districts of the west coast of USA (LA-Long Beach, Oakland, Tacoma, Seattle, Portland - in that order) announced a US West Coast Collaboration Panel. The panel is joined by Warren Buffet's Burlington Northern & Sante Fe Railroad and Union Pacific Railroad. Analysts see this as an effort to maintain market share in Chinese trade
The ports are under pressure from the following forces - high costs associated with union labor wages, anti-pollution fees, and new ports closer to population centers in middle and eastern America that will be serviced by the widening of the Panama Canal. In the aftermath of the Panic of '08, port traffic has plummeted - LA-Long Beach for example is back to 2001 levels. But cooperation with competitors and better integration with railroads can help the ports maintain their lead in bringing containers from China and distributing them to logistics centers and factories across the USA.
Absent from the summit is representation from Mexico where the federal government continues to back a new container port at Punta Colonet in Baja peninsula. That development has been scaled back
, however, to 1 million TEU (twenty-foot equivalent) containers capacity per year. Proposals for development are in but the Mexican government has not released any details yet....
Labels: chinese trade, foreign trade, panic of 2008, shipping
November 11, 2009
All Eyes On Asia
A week of Asian summits begins tomorrow with the APEC 2009 meeting in Singapore
and President Obama's first official junket to China with stops in Shanghai and Beijing. Chinese President Hu is already in Singapore
celebrating close ties with the independent Chinese city-state that oversees the world's most precarious shipping choke point. During APEC Hu will meet with Taiwan President Ma's envoy Lien Chan, Kuomintang Party chairman.
In Beijing Obama will have his first official state visit with Chinese Communist Party leaders and already in the USA various right wing interests are pushing for Obama to confront the "ChiComs" with their pet issues
such as "human rights" and the need to forcibly appreciate the Chinese currency. Word is Obama will pressure Beijing on climate change. Here's an idea: rather than try fruitlessly to get China to accept sweeping agreements to regulate CO2 emissions and accept Western nation mandates about global warming why not agree to explore a program for both the USA and China to reduce reliance on coal for electric power generation?....
Labels: apec, currencies, foreign relations, hu jintao, human rights, obama
November 10, 2009
Reunification Watch: Beijing-Taipei-Fujian Set Up Private Equity Venture
November 09, 2009
Chinese Fighter Jets to Have Stealth Capability
Dressed in a crisp but drab army green Mao jacket, Chinese President Hu Jintao observed the 60th anniversary of the People's Liberation Army Air Force on Sunday. Hu called for a new era in Chinese fighter jet technology
. He Weirong, Lieutenant General of the PLA Air Force said on Chinese television the air force would have stealth capability within 8 to 10 years
China continues to develop the J-10 its indegenous fighter jet that is considered similar but inferior to the American F-16. China exports the J-10 and has a joint venture with Pakistan to build an updated version, the J-10B. Even with new capabilities Chinese fighter planes are well behind the USA and Russia. Only the USA has a so-called fifth generation fighter in service, the F22 Raptor, produced for the Pentagon by perennial military-industrial-complex suppliers Lockheed-Martin and Boeing. The USA is further ahead with developing the F-22 Lightning II while Russia is placing its hopes on the T-50 tactical fighter....
Labels: aircraft, high-tech, military-industrial complex, technology
Sinopec - ExxonMobile LNG Deal
China's biggest refiner Sinopec (NYSE:SNP
) is finalizing a deal with ExxonMobil
to buy nearly a third of the production from a new Liqufied Natural Gas (LNG) works in Papua New Guinea. Sinopec would get 2 million tons per year of LNG and build a terminal in Qingdao, Shandong Province. Incidentally, Sinopec will offer this week 15 billion Yuan (over $2 billion US dollars) in 1-year corporate bonds. Gas use in China is expected to triple over the next 10 years and Sinopec's deal comes just as the head of China's National Energy Adminstration revealed the government wants to close the four remaining coal-fired power plants around Beijing
. Beijing will be served by new gas pipelines from Shaanxi Province. It seems reasonable to speculate that Sinopec may bring gas from its new Qingdao terminal to the Chinese capital....
Labels: energy security, foreign investment, gas
China-Africa Forum Focus on Mutual Development
November 06, 2009
China Tops Korea in Shipbuilding
For the first time China's shipbuilding production will soon outpace (South) Korea
to be the world's number 1 producer of ships. Chinese shipbuilders have just under 55 million gross tons on backorder and will soon account for nearly 35% of global market share for shipbuilding. In 2008 Chinese output totaled 28.81 deadweight tons. Leading shipbuilders include China State Shipbuilding Corporation
and Dalian New Shipbuilding Heavy Industry (DNS) operators of two of the world's biggest shipyards. Centers of shipbuilding in China are Shanghai, Tianjin, Dalian (Liaoning Province), Guangzhou, and Wuhan - all areas with long histories of making vessels of all shapes and sizes. Beijing announced this spring a program to encourage consolidation in the industry that may result in mergers and acquisitions in the medium future....
Labels: investment, shipping
China SWF to Invest over $1.5 Billion in US Power Company
The AES Corporation (NYSE:AES
), a global power generation and distribution conglomerate based in metro Washington, DC (Arlington, VA), announced today that China Investment Corp. - Beijing's soverign wealth fund - will invest $1.58 billion
(US dollars) for a 15% stake in the corporation. CIC will spend an additional $571 million to own 35% of AES's wind power business. AES operates 8 generation plants in China currently with nearly 3 MW combined capacity and has up to 49% stake in a Chinese wind farm. CIC's move could be viewed as a way to bring back to China greater control over AES assets in the country....
Labels: alternative energy, foreign investment, swf
TRADE WAR: Beijing Considers Duties on US Autos
The Obama administration seems keen to reward the US Steelworkers union for the millions in contributions during the 2008 election cycle with countervailing duties on Chinese steel product imports. Nearly every week there is a new product slapped with extra duties. Beijing's tit-for-tat response today is an investigation into whether US auto exports are subsidized
given that the Federal Government owns a large portion of the US auto industry. The flurry of trade disputes overshadows recent gains in understanding between the two trade giants and comes less than two weeks before Obama will arrive in China....
Labels: automobiles, foreign relations, foreign trade, free trade
November 05, 2009
TRADE WAR: 438% Countervailing Duties on Imports of Chinese Wire Decking
In yet another victory for the US Steelworkers union, the Obama administration this week announced determination of countervailing duties up to 473.73% on imports of wire decking
- a steel-derived product used in commercial and industrial storage rack systems - from China. The huge duties imposed by the Commerce Department are reserved for the many Chinese companies that did not submit paperwork to Commerce in a timely manner. Other Chinese exporters including named firms Dalian Huameilong Metal Products and Dalian EastFound Metal Products will face extra duties between 2.02 to 3.13 percent.....
Labels: chinese trade, foreign trade, free trade, steel
China-Russia Border May Open to Private Cars
The governors of Heilongjiang Province in China and Primorsky Krai in the Russian Far East want to open the border and allow private cars to cross freely
. The idea is one of several proposed by a delegation from the Chinese city of Mudanjiang to Vladivostock. Mudanjiang is an important industrial city midway between Harbin, capital of Heilongjiang, and Vladivostock. Mudanjiang has a metro population of close to 3 million, a large airport, and a developing tourism industry around its mountains and lakes.
Of immediate concern to the Chinese delegation is regular air service between the cities. As recently as 2003 there were 2 flights a day between Mudanjiang and Vladivostock although the flilghts were chartered only on the Chinese side and the planes were small (under 50 passengers). For reasons unknown to this writer they were suspended (weak demand?). China-Russia trade and development has tremendous potential. This region is close to the Tumen River development zone as well so it is an area to watch....
Labels: foreign relations, free trade, russia
November 04, 2009
China-Bangladesh Road Link
Chinese Ambassador Zhang Xianyi told reporters in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka (Dacca) that "We want to connect with Chittagong, Cox's Bazar via Ghundhum" and that a proposed Bangladesh-Myanmar (Burma)-China (Yunnan Province) highway was under consideration
by all governments concerned. No word on the planned Chittagong-Kunming rail link
but China is making efforts to expand trade and reverse the imbalance in the region. Of the nearly $5 billion (US dollars) in Bangladesh-China bi-lateral trade nearly 94% is Chinese exports. Zhang Xianyi said China hoped to import more Bangladesh tea and textiles in the future....
Labels: foreign investment, foreign relations, free trade
November 03, 2009
Shanghai Disney Venture Moves Forward
Almost a year after Sinomania! first reported
on it, the Walt Disney Company announced today that Beijing regulators have given the green light for a Shanghai Disney development. According to Disney
the Shanghai venture "would include a Magic Kingdom-style theme park with characteristics tailored to the Shanghai region and other amenities consistent with Disney's destination resorts worldwide." The park's location has been speculated to be Pudong where land is relatively plentiful although older rumours placed the park on Chongming Island in the mouth of the Yangtze. With luck Disney imagineers will cook up something more exciting than the Tokyo or Hong Kong Disneylands which have disappointed in attendance and impression.....
Labels: foreign investment, yangtze
While USA Talks, China Builds in Burma (Myanmar)
November 02, 2009
China Second to USA in Research
Tsien Hsue-Shen Dead at 98
Tsien Hsue-Shen or (pinyin) Qian Xuesen known as the father of China's missile program has died in Beijing at 98. A world expert physicist, Qian's long and eventful life was turned completely upside-down when he became a victim of Senator Joseph McCarthy's witch hunt against alleged Red Chinese communist spies in America. A detailed obituary can be found here
(link). Some highlights of Qian's fascinating life include:
- 1935: Qian Xuesen (usually printed Tsien Hsue-Shen) leaves Shanghai for graduate studies at MIT and later, at the urging of renowned rocket scientist Theodor Von Karman, himself only recently arrived in the USA from Hungary, continuing studies and research at Cal Tech. Not long afterward, Von Karmen and his collegues, including Qian, founded the Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
- 1945: Qian Xuesen and Von Karmen went to Germany at the end of World War II and helped coordinate "Operation Paperclip" that brought the Nazi rocket scientists, particularly the famous Werner Von Braun, to the United States. Von Braun and his proteges had surrendered to American troops in advance of the Russian front. The Russians, however, "inherited" the production crews of the Nazi rocket and aerospace industries. The Nazi regime in Germany had by far the most advanced technology. Many of Qian's theories were tested and proven by the Nazi scientists. Qian assimililated much of the Nazi expertise and quickly became the foremost theoritician in rocket and jet propulsion in the USA.
- 1950: Both the USA and the Soviet Union were actively experimenting with modified Nazi V-2 rocket designs with many successful launches. By 1950 the USA had established what would become the Cape Kennedy space center in Florida. At the same time, the USA and China entered a long period of bitterness over the collapse of the USA backed regime headed by Generalissimo Chiang Kai-Shek and the victory of the Communist Party in China. A sudden and still little-understood chain of events led to the Korean War, the creation of a protectorate for the failed Chiang government, and an anti-communist hysteria that would ultimately engulf the USA. A victim of this unhappy period was Qian Xuesen who became a virtual prisoner after he was accused of being a communist conspirator.
- 1955: Qian Xuesen is deported to the People's Republic of China. He is welcomed as a hero and quickly put in charge of China's rocket programs.
Labels: missiles, space program, technology
Subscribe to Posts [Atom]