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2017
Asia Needs more Dialogue
Solutions to urban pollution may prove complex
Spread of ESGs could herald new global movement
Investing in quality education is imperative if India wants to reap demographic dividends
China needs to lead in new multi-stakeholder world
China’s B&R initiative leading a resurgence of Asia
Education is key - but long-term: Can we survive?
New wave of robots will be beneficial to all
China needs to continue with its ‘heavy lifting’
Time is right for Chinese firms to invest in Europe
Robots to the rescue for China?
Asian Multinationals are Going Global, But to Where?
China ratchets forward with energy efforts
China’s calm necessary for globalization push
Bridging managerial gaps involves trust-building
China well-placed to power its future through green technology advances
China's new 'springtime' is here
2016
China’s moves show it’s banking on the future
Mindset for action at the G20 summit will be determined by Chinese presidency
Chinese head-hunting intensifies for rare managers that can steer overseas firms
US talk of isolation jars with growing links in Europe and Asia
Electoral rhetoric on global trade not in sync with reality
Is it time to be prudent and consider austerity policies again?
What will we do if we have no oil?
Unlock talent by finding the right fit for a person
The benefits are real and tangible
Trade along China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ won’t succeed without the currency of trust
Reasons for optimism about the long term
2015
Can big oil go green and win?
Poorer Nations Could Sway Climate Talks
Combating Idleness and Deprivation
How China can be a model of food sustainability for the developing world
Kyoto II – Is it a Done Deal?
A meeting of the two largest economic powers
Why China will experience a 'soft' landing
Beware of superstitions
The Elephant and Dragon move ahead
G-7 target on fossil fuels raises many questions
Why Battle for Net Neutrality in the US Matters Globally
China’s resurgence – the ‘normal new’
Wanted: A managerial culture that embraces cultural differences
China's early education plan a smart investment in the future
The New Normal for China and India
2014
China's infrastructure push offers a sure track to better growth
US-China climate pact a good start, but not quite enough
Rethink the human’s place in the ‘digital revolution’
China springs a carbon surprise
Infrastructure - the invisible hand in full view
Dialogue vital for survival of Iraqi nation
China must nurture a new generation of beautiful minds
Great expectations in China and India
GM Cereals – The Pros and Corns
Time to be Honest about Our Energy Prospects
Weathering the Storm of Climate Change
Making a Big Decision? Beware of Your Biases
West Deserves Better Logistics Infrastructure
Digital Currencies do Represent the Future
From 'Printed' Houses to Wooden Skyscrapers
It’s time to bail out our schools, not our firms
Solution to India’s housing shortage – print new ones!
And the most promising green technologies of 2014 are ...
Transport infrastructure key to domestic, export growth
Oil stopgaps: Not worth risking
2013
Why the US should grant Edward Snowden amnesty
May we be more optimistic!
China headed for another massive social experiment?
A dialogue that worked
Yes, politicians deserve vacations - because we benefit
NPOs, NGOs invaluable as creators of dialogue
Look closer and ask: Is America reinventing itself?
Boston bombings case underlines need for dialogue
Millennium Development Goals or own goals?
As usual it's about balance - and timing - of course
Chinese strategists make right moves for growth
2012
Preparing for tomorrow
Austerity or growth?
Japan in danger of becoming 'just a place to fly over'
Beware of the business cycle?
An inconvenient truth
Limited offer sale: Buy a country
Where did our money go?
Leading from behind - a year of elections is almost over
Driving towards a green future
Waiting for springtime
Preserve or Perish
Startlingly similar Asia policy for Obama, Romney
Globalisation remains an irresistible trend
Google has the edge in smartphone war
U.S. Braces for China's Rise
Mankind’s General Scourge
The summer holidays are over and nothing has changed!
Put the hidden trillions to work
Making sense of India’s woes and wonders
Storm in a teacup!
Let’s give bad bankers a venue to admit their sins
News is about depth, not puff or velocity
Booming India, but too few toilets
Delayed Court decisions doesn't mean one may continue to play 'Great Game'
We need media to reflect on data and offer public a balanced view
Big polluters can lead in forging common purpose
The weighty issue of choosing a leader
EU-India Relations - Facing similar challenges
Educating with a goal
The Judicial Malaise
We are growing out, but not growing up
EU´s retrenchment enigma
Urbulence in the Eurozone and the effect on SMEs
Skolkovo May Help Russia to Diversify
Make things more effective
Tapping into the Commonwealth connection
Innovative models for public finance
Facebook revolution but Indian style
The feel-good factor
Asian investors - a private equity opportunity
India needs to be taller and stronger
China´s low sales volume...
Nations playing leapfrog
Shafts of sunlight
What webs we weave
As performers go to Davos, the circus steals the show
Can we control the politicians?
2011
Europe’s reminiscence
China firms should go for win-win in overseas ventures
Of procrastination...
Making sense of profiteering
Truth about financial mess must be laid bare
Small is also beautiful
China can help Europe with debt crisis
Excising the cancer of global corruption
Education, a critical asset
Arab uprisings set in motion forces of creative destruction
A new era of change
We must ensure better education for all
Beijing wary of bankrolling a lost cause
Asean's re-emergence as a local and global leader
Why India's Role in the Global Economy is Still Work in Progress
Its the leadership, stupid!
Reverse globalisation: The new buzzword
Beijing wary of bankrolling a lost cause, as it should be
By Frank-Jürgen Richter
South China Morning Post, September 22, 2011
 

Frank-Jurgen Richter says Europe should first prove itself to be creditworthy

 

The mix of cultures within the 27-member European Union and the enforcing of monetary union with all its ramifications have caused the present-day crisis. Clear leadership is lacking, as is any determination to stand up to protesters – be they workers’ unions or the general population. And all governments’ finance ministers are involved in the changes affecting the euro on a minute-by-minute basis.

It is also a global problem, and China is involved as it has a very large sovereign wealth fund able to buy out debt practically anywhere in the world.

However, Premier Wen Jiabao said last week that China was not to be looked on as a “last hope” financier for failed economies – thus, Europe must put its house in order before calling on bailouts from China.

Europe’s financial crisis is a convoluted mess. It is partly predicated on the US 2007 banking collapse because Europe’s banks were also involved in cross-lending into the US. The lack of confidence in the US spread to Europe so its banks hesitated to lend to each other and, in turn, did not lend to individuals. In many ways, growth has been strangled. And it is growth that creates wealth.

Meanwhile, some in Europe are grasping the global production interlinks: the shipping company Maersk Line has just announced that it will ensure daily shuttle shipping from Europe to Asia and back. Even though China’s internal market is growing rapidly, it still exports a lot, with most of it going to Europe. This will help China press for EU acceptance of its market economy status, though it knows this may not occur until 2016 under World Trade Organisation rules.

Commerce Minister Chen Deming has stressed that China is already a market economy. Others point to China’s upsurge of built-in intellectual products in many of its goods, some of which are global leaders; yet, still others say that China’s intellectual property law is too lax. These arguments are never clear-cut.

It is clear that China did recover rapidly after the 2009 shock when both its internal and external market collapsed. External buyers simply reduced their stock levels across all sectors so, in turn, China had to slow its own production – yet it was able to ramp up rapidly when global demand rose again. Last year, the country’s share of global manufactured exports reached 13.7 per cent, up from 12.1per cent in 2009: a trend likely to persist in the coming decade.

Eventually, China will reach a point where mounting labour costs trigger declining shares in low-end exports, offsetting gains in the mid and high-end value segments. But we’re not there yet. Its goods are more hi-tech than before, but it is still predominantly a labour intensive, low-end export power, excelling in production of commodities such as clothing, textiles, footwear and toys.

It is persisting in developing its own infrastructure of roads, railways, waterways and the airways – most geared towards the increased flow of goods based on inflows of raw materials and fuels for its manufacturing plants. The future of exports from China will be led by equipment manufacturers and, although these may not yet be penetrating Western markets, competition in third markets is intensifying. The greatest shock that might face European and US manufacturers is the full-scale export of Chinese manufacturing capability similar to that of the Japanese entering the US and Europe.

China wishes to improve its global image of being a benign power in many sectors, but it will not be perceived as mature if it doles out money to spent causes. It bought into the US debt, perhaps fuelling too much credit and inflaming US purchase of cheap goods from China. It will have learned that hard lesson, and now Europe has to behave better than the old US in order to be creditworthy in China’s eyes. That seems fair.

 

Dr Frank-Jürgen Richter is the founder and chairman of Horasis, an independent international organisation committed to enacting visions for a sustainable future.

 


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