China In Touch, 13 December 2017, Issue 218

This week as I travelled the New Silk Road from Jinghong in South Western Yunnan to Mohan on the very border of China and Laos. This was skimming the mountain tops, weaving through the clouds giving truth the translation of Yunnan – south of the clouds. A 200 Kilometer journey that would have taken a full day or more just a few years ago was completed in a little over two hours and was a comfortable day return trip. It was made on a dual expressway – 2 lanes each way - that carved its way through the jungle and the mountains. Tunnels were often 2 to 3 kilometers long and the road a series of gentle gradients and sedate curves. Occasionally there was a glimpse of the old road, with switchback curves, steep descents and even steeper ascents.

China In Touch, 6 December 2017, Issue 217

In the excitement that often surrounds business engagement with China is easy to forget that this is not one-way trade. We spend a lot of time thinking about business strategies, planning how to enter the China market or expand our footprint. Governments and business develop investment attraction strategies designed to bring Chinese investment into major projects and infrastructure. Underpinning this is an unspoken assumption that China is a pot of gold with unlimited opportunities. It’s a modern version of the Shanghai tailors dream.

China In Touch, 22 November 2017, Issue 216

Its difficult to know if Hangzhou is now more famous as a site of Jack Mas Alibaba enterprise or for the gardens and temples of West Lake. Certainly for the commercially focused it’s the high tech cross border ecommerce trade zone developments that first come to mind. The province of Guizhou is more closely identified with the colorful Miao and Dong minority groups than with any high tech developments but the capital, Guiyang, is the largest cross border ecommerce development zone after Hangzhou.

China In Touch, 8 November 2017, Issue 215

The CPCCC meeting has ended, but what are the key outcomes for Australia and the NT? In the week following the conference I was in China and had the opportunity to talk with a wide range of senior officials and friends. We should not underestimate the level of support enjoyed by President Xi, particularly around the anti-corruption campaign. One Belt One Road will fundamentally alter the economic landscape of Asia and Eastern Europe/Eurasia. This is a trade bloc policy with inbuilt political tolerance for diversity. NT prosperity depends on involvement in this new landscape, and the regulatory structures which are defining it.

China In Touch, 25 October 2017, Issue 214

Anyone who doubted the commitment to and the longevity of the New Silk Road policy has those doubts removed with China Presidents Xi remarks to the CPCCC meeting. This is not a rhetorical centrepiece of his policy. It is a genuine cornerstone of his vison for China future involvement with the world. Despite this, there are some of see the New Silk Road policy as a set of empty commitments which have already lost steam. As a recent ANZ report noted, there are five myths, or misconceptions that surround this policy.