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What we are reading

Week of June 29

Published 29 June 2021

Sustainable trade

Will China's demographic time bomb end the low-inflation age?

China’s large, low-wage labor pool has been a deflationary factor in recent decades. What will China’s demographic shifts mean for supply chains, manufacturing, and the global economy?

By Hiroyuki Nishimura, Nikkei Asia

How trade agreements can level the gender playing field

How can trade agreements and trade policy be structured in order to help women participate more fully in the global economy?

By Ally Brodsky, Jasmine Lim, and William Reinsch, Center for Strategic and International Studies

Supply chains

Coronavirus impact on China’s exports may have been underestimated amid Guangdong outbreak

The Covid pandemic continues to disrupt supply chains, this time in the Guangdong, the “world’s factory floor”. That puts intense pressure on the many small and medium enterprises operating there.

By Cissy Zhou and He Huifeng, South China Morning Post

The post-COVID-19 future for global value chains

Understanding how global value chains work gives us a better sense of who benefits from trade – and how – and the impact of recent shocks from US-China tariffs and the Covid pandemic.

By Ben Shepherd, UNDP Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific

The Biden White House plan for a new US industrial policy, speech to the Atlantic Council

The Biden Administration proposes a new industrial policy for America, calling for targeted investments to bolster supply chain resilience.

By Brian Deese, Director, White House National Economic Council

US-China trade

US fight against Chinese 5G efforts shifts from threats to incentives

The US Government makes a serious push against adoption of Chinese 5G technologies in Central and Eastern Europe.

By Stu Woo and Drew Hinshaw, The Wall Street Journal

Can America’s solar power industry compete with China’s? One firm tries

With significant and newly revived government support, US firms hope to challenge China’s dominance of solar panel production.

By Bob Davis, The Wall Street Journal

Free trade agreements / Trade and geopolitics

The G7’s new global infrastructure initiative

G7 leaders intend to offer a “higher quality alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative”, as detailed in this announcement launching the Build Back Better World (B3W) Partnership. 

By Matthew P. Goodman and Jonathan E. Hillman, Center for Strategic and International Studies

Airbus/Boeing deal explained: what is in it and what happens next

The US and EU (and US and UK) suspend tariffs and agree on a path toward final resolution of a long-standing conflict, while turning their collective focus on China’s nascent aircraft industry.

By Jim Brunsden and Sylvia Pfeiffer, Financial Times

America and Europe will create a joint tech council to craft new rules on trade

The US and EU will coordinate in establishing global standards for new technologies, promoting democratic values online, and collaborating on cutting-edge research and development.

By Christina Wilkie, CNBC

Time to upgrade the CPTPP

Should CPTPP members take the opportunity to update the agreement, as membership expands to include the UK?

By Deborah Elms, Asian Trade Centre

Trade and technology

The titan of Taiwan

How did Taiwan’s TSMC come to dominate semiconductor fabrication?

By Tim De Chant, The Wire China

TSMC in Arizona: Why Taiwan's chip titan is betting on the desert

Why do semiconductor manufacturers locate plants where they do? What factors go into their decision-making?

By Yifan Yu and Cheng Ting-Fang, Nikkei Asia

Japan lays out ‘national project’ for chips after lost decades

Japan commits to semiconductor industry growth as a “national project” in order to regain a share of global semiconductor sales, which have declined from 50% in 1988 to just 10% in 2019.

By Isabel Reynolds, Bloomberg

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