A new Green Wave? – Sustainability in China

Sustainability in ChinaHow is China performing in terms of sustainability? When it comes to sustainability or ESG (environment, social, governance) standards,China is lagging behind other countries In selected indices of Earth.Org and Yale, China is ranked 136th and 120th respectively. Furthermore, Chinese companies receive a lower sustainability rating than enterprises in developed or even other emerging economies (FTSE4good index). However China has recently announced ambitious environmental sustainability targets. The country wants to peak its CO2 emissions until 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2060. This year’s 14th Five-Year Plan includes specific targets on the reduction of CO2 and energy intensity …

China’s Demographic Challenge

China’s Demographic ChallengeWhy is China facing demographics problems? From 1960 to 2015, China’s population more than doubled to around 1.4 billion people. The government tried to control this explosive growth with the One-Child Policy introduced in 1979, leading to a decline of the average fertility rate per woman from over 6 in the 1960s to 1.7 in 2020. Even the recent policy shift towards a universal two-child policy could not significantly reverse this trend. After reaching its peak in 2016, the number of new-born babies in China is expected to continue declining until 2030. Nowadays, Chinese have fewer children due …

Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)

Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP)What is the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership? Signed in November 2020, the RCEP is a Free-Trade Agreement between 15 countries including the ASEAN nations, China, South Korea, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. As of 2020, the member countries account for ~30% of the world’s population and ~30% of global GDP. In March 2021, China became the first signatory to ratify RCEP, around three months ahead of schedule. The agreement can be viewed as the regional answer to the failed Transatlantic Partnership and a complementation of the existing CPTPP. Its purpose is to eliminate tariff and non-tariff …

China’s 14th Five-Year Plan

China’s 14th Five-Year PlanWhat is the background? China has been using five-year time periods to steer its economy since 1953. In the meantime, the focus of these Five-Year Plans (FYP) has shifted from socialist top-down economic planning to acting more as a “guideline” – setting targets and aligning incentives. A draft version of the 14th plan (2021-25) was released in late 2020 and the final version was passed in March 2021 at the Two Sessions – one of China’s major political meetings. More detailed implementation plans for major sectors, ministries, and regions will follow in the months ahead. In addition, …