China

Will Labour withdraw from NZ-China Free Trade Agreement?

Andrew Little is still banging on about his bottom-lines and the TPPA.

One of these is banning foreigners (except Australians) from buying residential property in New Zealand (unless the foreigners built it themselves). There will be no compromise. The National government-negotiated option of a stamp duty (Annex II) is not enough for Andrew Little.

He has however forgotten that, even if the TPPA is rejected, there is still the issue of the NZ-China Free Trade Agreement that his party signed in 2008.

Since Labour’s main interest is banning foreign buyers with chinky-sounding names, it is inconvenient to remember that the NZ-China FTA does not allow New Zealand to ban Chinese from buying homes here (see Articles 138 and 139).   Read more »

Chinese economic jitters and the Auckland housing market

Lately there have been some worry warts out there who are certain that the housing market is about to turn.

The key to it has been a minor downturn in sales in December, which doesn’t mean anything at all.

But speculation also exists that the Chinese have been turned off since the Brightline rules came into effect post-October 2015.

Now it’s jitters about China.

The New Year has started with renewed jitters about the state of the Chinese economy. Commodity prices – particularly oil – have fallen. Global share markets have continued their dance macabre to the alternate beats of pessimism and optimism. Some commentators have raised the spectre of another global financial crisis which further spooks the financial markets. The truth is that no one really knows and much of what is written is noise.

But one thing is certain. Governments have learned a lesson from the global financial crisis of 2007/8.

And now there is shooting

South Korea has fired warning shots across the border at a North Korean drone.

South Korea has fired warning shots after an unidentified object from North Korea was seen flying close to the rivals’ border, the South’s military said.

Media reported that it was a drone. The incident comes amid a deepening standoff between the Koreas in the wake of the North’s nuclear test one week ago.

The North Korean object turned around after the South fired the shots, the South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement. It did not say whether the South Koreans hit the object. Yonhap news agency reported that the South fired 20 rounds from machine guns at a drone.  Read more »

Labour will be pleased, actual Chinese, ones with real Chinky-sounding names, aren’t so keen on NZ for investing any more…for now

Phil Twyford will be pleased. So will Andrew Little and the rest of the Labour caucus…it seems Chinese aren’t that fussed on New Zealand any more for investment.

But it appears it is a short-term blip.

The head of a company that helps Chinese buy properties overseas says New Zealand’s popularity ranking has slipped a notch since the Government and Reserve Bank introduced new buyer restrictions last October.

Juwai co-founder Simon Henry said New Zealand shifted to fifth from fourth most popular country in the world with potential property buyers in China between the third and fourth quarters of 2015.

But Henry, whose Chinese language website has 2.6 million unique users monthly, predicts Chinese buyers’ interest in New Zealand will return in force by mid-year once they’ve fully digested the new requirements.     Read more »

Surely Labour will oppose this?

It looks like we are set for a bumper year of tourism, though I’m expecting Labour will oppose the tourism from people with chinky-sounding names.

Nearly 50,000 Chinese holidaymakers will shortly land in New Zealand as experts forecast the biggest “golden week” for Chinese tourists in our history.

January and February are traditionally New Zealand’s busiest and most lucrative tourism months but it is the growth in Chinese holiday visitors that is pushing the industry to new peaks.

The so-called “golden week” starting February 7 coincides with the Chinese Lunar New Year holiday week and China’s middle class goes on the move particularly to destinations like Thailand and Japan, but also further afield to places such as New Zealand.

Increased air capacity to New Zealand from China is also helping.   Read more »

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Now here is some irony: China may end up winning the election for Labour

If our economy tanks because of China, it will finally give Labour a chance to take National down for poor economic performance, even when they have no plans of their own except to massively increase spending and taxes.

Shares on major exchanges have fallen for a sixth straight day and crude oil prices touched multi-year lows as investors fretted over the state of China’s economy and its ability to stabilise its stock market.

In a move that deepened concerns over China’s economic health, the People’s Bank of China set the yuan midpoint rate lower for an eighth consecutive day. The 0.5 percent decline was the biggest between daily fixings since August.

China suspended a circuit breaker implemented at the start of 2016 that stopped trading for the day when the benchmark index fell 7 percent, a halt already triggered twice this week. Analysts and investors said the mechanism, put in place to avoid market volatility, may have backfired.

“People see the weakness in China and in the overall equity market and think there’s going to be an impact on corporations here in the United States,” said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Boston Private Wealth in New York.    Read more »

Guess what people want in China, other than a good salary and holidays?

Daycare?  Dental?  Health insurance?

Nope…

It’s not only about salaries, promotions and career prospects – many companies in China have found they need to offer cleaner air within their offices to lure and retain staff.

Air quality has deteriorated badly in China’s north and east, including in Beijing and Shanghai. Companies, especially multinationals, based in these cities are spending tens of thousands of dollars to install air filtration systems and real-time pollution monitoring devices in their offices.

International market research company J.D. Power has installed new clean air systems at its Beijing and Shanghai offices, an executive said. Auditing firm Pricewaterhouse Coopers and British advertising firm WPP Plc are doing the same in their premises.

“If a company is willing to reduce pollution inside, it shows it is responsible and will have good growth,” said Shanghai resident Yao Hui, who has decided to leave a Chinese furniture company where she has worked for four months after finding its office had the highest category of pollution on a measurement device she used.

It seems extreme, but breathing that polluted air all day is very bad for your health, and people are not willing to work in such environments.   Read more »

China to address it’s own stateless people problem

China says it will allow millions of unregistered citizens – many of them children born in violation of the one-child policy – to obtain documents vital to secure education and health services long denied to them, state media reports say.

An estimated 13 million Chinese, or one percent of the country’s total population, do not have proper household registration permits, or “hukou”.

Some of them are orphans, but many more are people born in violation of the highly controversial “one-child policy”, which restricted most couples to only one offspring, and barred any extra from being registered unless their parents paid a hefty fine, which many could not afford.

Known as “black children”, they are unable to go to school or obtain formal employment, and often have problems travelling, among other difficulties.

The policy’s replacement with a two-child rule for all was announced in October, and the government promised to “fully resolve the hukou registration problem for unregistered people” at a meeting chaired by President Xi Jinping on Wednesday, according to a statement released by the official Xinhua news agency. Read more »

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Should the left boycott America, China, Bangladesh and Morocco?

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On this blog we have written about young children being trained from birth to hate and posed with knives in photos on social media with slogans inciting others to stab Jews and Israelis. Literally every day there is another report on my Facebook page about a stabbing in Israel.

Above: Store mannequins in Gaza

Above: Store mannequins in Gaza

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Tell me why we should do something about climate emissions when China has just pulled a VW on us all

The leftwing would have us all taxed and living in the stone age in order to save the planet from ourselves.

Some leftwing blogs have even suggested that the SIS are stupid in saying the biggest risk to NZ for security is Islamic terrorism, and not climate change.

They implore us to lead the world even though our emissions are just 0.2% of the world’s emissions.

Meanwhile China has pulled a Volkswagen emissions scam on us all.

China has shown the world how much it truly cares about global warming by burning significantly more dirty, carbon-unfriendly coal than it previously pretended.

According to shock data  released, without fanfare, by China’s statistical agency, its coal use has been about 17 per cent higher per year than earlier official figures admitted. This may have pumped an extra billion tons per year of CO2 into the atmosphere – more than the total house gas output of the entire German economy.

In 2012, China burned through an extra 600 million tons of coal: about 70 per cent of the amount used annually by the US.

The new figures make a nonsense of China’s publicly-expressed commitment to wage war on climate change.    Read more »