Economy & Trade

China’s ICBC Provides RMB Clearing Services in Russia

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By Dezan Shira & Associates

The Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) has begun providing Chinese RMB clearing services in Moscow. The facility will ease the use of RMB as a trading currency between the two nations, and expedite the use of transactional settlements in financial services and cooperation between the two. The facility began operating on March 22nd.

Russia’s central bank announced the inclusion of the RMB in its national foreign exchange reserves at the end of 2015.

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City Spotlight: High-Tech Developments in Jiaxing

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By Harry Handley

China Jiaxing South Lake parks and pagoda landscape.Jiaxing, traditionally known as ‘the home of silk’, is a prefecture-level city of 4.59 million people located in East China’s Zhejiang province. With an area of 3,915 square kilometers, Jiaxing is surrounded by Suzhou to the north, Shanghai to the east, Hangzhou and Huzhou to the west and the Hangzhou Bay to the south. In terms of infrastructure, Jiaxing is well developed with a deep-water port, high speed rail links, and six expressways linking to the wider Yangtze River Delta region.

The Chinese Academy of Social Science ranked Jiaxing the 37th most competitive city in China in 2016, a standing that has significantly increased in recent years. A push by the local government to shift away from traditional resource-heavy manufacturing and towards a more high-tech and environmentally friendly economy has led to a range of diverse industries in the city. These industries, and several special development zones within the city, present significant opportunities for foreign firms who are looking to expand their operations in China.

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Asia Investment Brief: Trade Mark Rules in India, Setting Up an RO in Russia, and Agriculture in Vietnam

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Our weekly round up of other news affecting foreign investors throughout Asia:

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Industry Spotlight: Thailand’s Automotive Industry

Established over 50 years ago, Thailand’s automotive sector has developed into the biggest automotive hub in Southeast Asia. In our latest industry spotlight, we highlight recent regulations in the sector and explore why R&D will be required to sustain competitiveness.

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Indian Government Revamps Trade Mark Rules

Registering trademarks in India just got simpler: the government introduced its new Trade Mark Rules, 2017 on March 6. A faster, simpler, and transparent registration process will benefit businesses and will serve as an overall boost to India’s intellectual property regime.

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China Market Watch: Marine Product Equal 9.5 Percent of GDP, Made in China 2025 Initiative Focuses on R&D

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China Market Watch banner China’s marine produce accounts for 9.5 percent of 2016 GDP

China’s State Oceanic Administration (SOA) has announced in a report that the country’s overall marine product has increased by 6.8 percent year-on-year to over RMB 7 trillion in 2016, making up 9.5 percent of China’s GDP last year. Value-added marine produce accounted for 54 percent of the overall industry, reaching RMB 3.84 trillion last year.

Meanwhile, the marine biopharmaceutical industry made significant growth last year, and coastal tourism has also been steadily expanding.

The report notes a decline in output and added value of offshore oil and gas from 2015, with challenges remaining for China’s maritime shipping industry, despite efforts towards structural optimization. However, China has completed numerous maritime projects, including the installation of offshore wind farms.

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Asia Investment Brief: IPOs in India, Manufacturing Locations in Indonesia, and Foreign Trademarks in Russia

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An Economic & Social Background to the Philippines 2017

The Philippines has, over the past few years, been playing a ‘catch up’ strategy, and is now among the leading economies within ASEAN. Despite its many problems, the economy and commercial sector remain on the rise and present significant opportunities for investment for those who know where to look.

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India Is Hot! New IPO’s Are Massively Oversubscribed

A sign of the desire to get into the new Indian dynamic has manifested itself in the over-subscription of Indian IPOs. This is a time for entrepreneurs to get stuck in, and ride what promises to be an exciting ten years in making India both an Asian consumer tiger and the workshop of the world.

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Making Sense of China’s 2017 Economic Growth Target

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By Alexander Chipman Koty

During the annual Two Sessions meetings last weekend, China’s political leaders announced their economic growth targets for 2017. The affair produced few surprises: the government predictably released an economic and political agenda that stressed the importance of stability and continuity.

Although the message was short on bold new policy announcements, the plan presented in Premier Li Keqiang’s annual Work Report – often likened to the State of the Union in the US – offers clues towards the direction and restructuring of the world’s second largest economy, as well as the obstacles China faces going forward.

Given the deliberately crafted nature of the Work Report, slight changes in the way the government presents issues over previous years can signal shifts in policies and priorities. While China’s 2017 GDP target appears like a logical continuation of recent growth objectives at first glance, its careful wording delicately recalibrates expectations for the economy’s performance for the coming years.

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Asia Investment Brief: Cambodia’s 2017 FDI Outlook, Indonesia’s Palm Oil Sector, and Transfer Pricing in Vietnam

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Cambodia’s FDI Outlook for 2017: Understanding the Challenges and Opportunities Ahead

Understand current conditions for foreign investment in Cambodia for 2017 and learn how to position operations to avoid obstacles and maximize opportunity

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India Sets GST Rates, App for July 1 Rollout

India is keen to rollout the GST from July 1; the government has pegged the peak tax rates, fixed tax slabs, and is working on ensuring easy accessibility for all. This article discusses the progress made and further areas that need to be addressed by the government.

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China Lays Foundations for Eurasian Free Trade after TPP Failure

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CDE Op-Ed Commentary

The Trump administration’s decision to cancel the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal has added uncertainty to the future of US trade with Asia. It is something of a shame given that, in essence, the TPP was a well-thought out agreement that would have assisted a number of US industries keep their global trade positions, while adding value to raw Asian sourced products.

To be fair to Trump, the deal was pretty much dead in the water: the political arrogance in educating citizens over its content coupled with conspiracy theories over how the TPP would cost US jobs had long rendered the TPP a lame duck. For that, the previous administration should shoulder much of the blame.

China, which was not included in the TPP framework, has shrugged its shoulders at the end result. For Beijing, a lack of participation only mattered in the sense that it would not be gaining additional access to the US industrial market in certain sectors. But with China wanting to move up the value chain, even with potential for greater US access, the TPP was always a deal it could live without: many industries in China have begun gravitating toward more cost effective environments in Bangladesh, India, and Vietnam.

The demise of the TPP and the recent politicizing of trade have made China rethink what it really wants from free trade agreements (FTAs). A US that pursues a more belligerent approach to international politics and trade will concern Beijing.

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Dezan Shira & Associates

Meet the firm behind our content. Dezan Shira & Associates have been servicing foreign investors in China, India and the ASEAN region since 1992. Click here to visit their professional services website and discover how they can help your business succeed in Asia.

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