Tag Archives: economics

“When Delia Davin, the pioneer of Chinese women’s studies,…



“When Delia Davin, the pioneer of Chinese women’s studies, arrived in Beijing in 1963, aged 19, there were still camels carrying coal and wooden ploughs in the fields outside the city. Davin, who has died of cancer aged 72, quickly established a rapport with her students at the Beijing Broadcasting Institute, whom she found to be ‘very serious about their work, but [to] have a gaiety which saves them from being priggish’. She taught them Irish songs as well as English grammar, and one of them recited ‘Shall I compare thee to a summer’s day’ to console her, the student said, for not being in England on Shakespeare’s birthday.”

For more on Davin’s work as a pioneering scholar in the intersecting fields of Women’s Studies and East Asian Studies, see her obituary, composed by John Gittings and quoted above, in The Guardian (16 October 2016) as well as an appreciation posted by scholar Gail Hershatter at H-Net (16 October 2016).

“With a dramatic devaluation of the yuan yesterday, Beijing…



“With a dramatic devaluation of the yuan yesterday, Beijing brought out the bazookas in a move that might escalate a regional currency war that it had until now chosen to avoid.“

For more, see Jeanny Yu, “Bazookas Out as China’s Yuan Devaluation Sparks Fears of Regional Currency War,” South China Morning Post (11 Aug 2015)

Image: AFP

“Here are two things that China’s government wants very badly:…



“Here are two things that China’s government wants very badly: first, for its economy to remain on an even keel, keeping growth and employment high. Second, for its currency, the renminbi, to become a pre-eminent global currency that helps promote the country’s diplomatic goals and solidify the country’s centrality to the global economy. Frequently those goals are in conflict. But Tuesday, it found a way to advance both at once.“

For more, see Neil Irwin, “Why Did China Devalue Its Currency? Two Big Reasons,” The New York Times (11 Aug 2015)

Image: Rolex Dela Pena / European Pressphoto Agency        

“If modern material comforts are the measure of success, then…



“If modern material comforts are the measure of success, then Gere, a 59-year-old former yak-and-sheep herder in China’s western Qinghai Province, should be a happy man.In the two years since the Chinese government forced him to sell his livestock and move into a squat concrete house here on the windswept Tibetan plateau, Gere and his family have acquired a washing machine, a refrigerator and a color television that beams Mandarin-language historical dramas into their whitewashed living room.

But Gere, who like many Tibetans uses a single name, is filled with regret. Like hundreds of thousands of pastoralists across China who have been relocated into bleak townships over the past decade, he is jobless, deeply indebted and dependent on shrinking government subsidies to buy the milk, meat and wool he once obtained from his flocks. ‘We don’t go hungry, but we have lost the life that our ancestors practiced for thousands of years,’ he said.”

For more, see Andrew Jacobs, “China Fences In Its Nomads, and an Ancient Life Withers,” The New York Times (11 July 2015)

Image: Gilles Sabrie / The New York Times

“It is like a casino, but without rules, where ‘one player can…



“It is like a casino, but without rules, where ‘one player can see other players’ cards.’ That’s how prominent Chinese economist Wu Jinglian described the nature of the Chinese stock market last year during a finance summit when the stock market began to surge.”

For more, see Jack Hu, “Why a Meme Compares China’s Flood of Retail Investors to a Pig at Slaughter,” Global Voices, 27 May 2015

Beijing to Shut All Major Coal Power Plants to Cut Pollution

Beijing to Shut All Major Coal Power Plants to Cut Pollution:

Beijing, where pollution averaged more thantwice China’s national standard last year, will close the last of its four major coal-fired power plants next year.

The capital city will shutter China Huaneng Group Corp.’s 845-megawatt power plant in 2016, after last week closing plants owned by Guohua Electric Power Corp. and Beijing Energy Investment Holding Co., according to a statement Monday on the website of the city’s economic planning agency.

“Corruption is not only about the corruption of…



“Corruption is not only about the corruption of individuals… but also the process of privatisation through which many who are in power, together with investors, can shift money from public property into private pockets, and get rid of the state’s responsibility for the working class.”

- Wang Hui. For more, see “After the Party: An Interview with Wang Hui" (13 Jan 2014)

“Chinese authorities greeted the 25th anniversary of the 1989…



"Chinese authorities greeted the 25th anniversary of the 1989 crackdown on protesters in Tiananmen Square by detaining dozens of activists and lawyers, proving that Beijing continues to be haunted by the specter of those protests a quarter century after they ended. But another, less eye-catching series of detentions and convictions highlights a separate source of concern for the central government: swelling dissatisfaction among workers."

For more, see Stanley Lubman, “Labor Pains: A Rising Threat to Stability in China,” WSJ (10 June 2014)

Image: Reuters