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Geo-Strategic Trend - 3. page

South Korea Export Growth Rate Reached No. 1 in the World

Well-known Chinese news site Sohu recently reported that, based on data that the World Trade Organization (WTO) released on September 19, South Korea’s export volume between January and July of this year enjoyed a year-over-year growth rate of 16.3 percent, reaching US$328 billion. This rate is the highest among the world’s top 10 largest export countries, and happens to be double China’s number. Ironically, the high growth was achieved during a period when China has been heavily boycotting South Korean products, mainly due to China’s unhappiness of the Deployment of the U.S. THAAD missile defense system. In the meantime, China’s export growth rate (8.3 percent) was below the average of the 70 primary export countries in the world. Experts expressed the belief that South Korea’s strong export recovery was based on the global economic recovery as well as the unit price increases of Korean products. The author of the article suggested that foreign investments play an important role in the Chinese economy. Boycotting foreign products may impact China’s own position in the supply chain.

Source: Sohu, September 23, 2017

Indian Economy’s Freefall Has Caused International Investors to Flee

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that, over five consecutive quarters, India’s 5.7 percent economic growth rate has reached a new low. The growth rate has been declining steadily and is now at its lowest since early 2014. The Indian SENSEX index has been in freefall since the beginning of September. International investors were not able to identify any positive spots and have decided to flee the stock market. In August and September alone, the Indian stock market lost around US$2.61 billion in foreign investments, which was roughly 40 percent of the total foreign investments in stock – based on statistics calculated at the beginning of the year. In the meantime, the growth rate of foreign investments in Indian bonds is nearly at zero. Economists expressed the belief that India’s deficit is expected to increase and international ratings organizations have started criticizing India’s upcoming stimulus plan before it even begins. Apparently, India’s October is not going to look good for foreign investors.

Source: Sina, October 1, 2017


Ministry of Commerce: Closing Down North Korean Companies Per UN Resolution

China’s Ministry of Commerce recently released its official announcement asking all government branches to close down North Korean owned businesses in China. The regulation was issued under the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC), which is part of the Ministry. The new government regulation explained that the cause of the policy change was based on the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2375. The scope of the regulation applies to all companies in China that involve North Korea, including joint ventures. SAIC gave the companies 120 days to close down their businesses. The provincial governments are held accountable for enforcing the implementation of the new regulation. However, the new announcement did mention some exceptions for purposes that are not-for-profit and which the UN resolution allows.

Source: Official Website of the Ministry of Commerce, September 26, 2017

Is Jian Yang a Chinese Spy?

A number of English media and Chinese media reported that Jian Yang (杨健), an MP in the New Zealand government and a member of its ruling National Party, might be a Chinese spy.

Jian Yang was born in Jiangxi Province in China. He earned his Master and Ph. D. degree in International Relations from the Australian National University. Then in 1999, the University of Auckland in New Zealand hired him as a Senior Lecturer in Political Studies. In 2011, he was elected as an MP from the National Party.

The issue was that Yang didn’t disclose his experiences as both a student and instructor at two military schools in China whose main duty is to produce spies. The two schools are the Air Force Engineering College and the Luoyang PLA University of Foreign Languages.

Some of the English media focused on how much Yang had disclosed to the New Zealand government and whether he vowed to be loyal to New Zealand. However, that discussion may not be that relevant since what Yang disclosed (or did not disclose) does not prove (or disprove) he is a spy. In all probability, a spy would not disclose anything that would even hint that he is a spy. A person who is not a spy might not choose to disclose anything either.

So whether Yang is a spy may be left to the intelligence office to decide.

Lianhe Zaobao, the largest Singapore-based Chinese-language newspaper stated, “The two universities belong to the PLA and are the key places where China trains its spies.” It also quoted an expert who said, “Yang almost certainly works for the PLA.”

Source: Lianhe Zaobao, September 13, 2017


Chosun: North Korean Banned Residents Near Nuclear Test Site from Entering Pyongyang

South Korea’s largest newspaper Chosun recently reported in its Chinese Edition that the North Korean government has banned residents who live near the nuclear test site from entering Pyongyang – after its sixth nuclear test. Those residents who had scheduled appointments with Pyongyang hospitals were told not to come visit. Experts expressed the belief that the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Site suffered a certain level of collapse after the last nuclear test and local residents could have been exposed to radioactive contamination. That was the biggest potential reason for the North Korean authorities to establish the ban. In the meantime, North Korea has been mobilizing its citizens in nationwide war preparation exercises. The North Korean military was given permission to shoot if they encounter a group of soldiers where most “wear glasses and are taller than average,” even if the group is in North Korean military uniforms.

Source: Chosun, September 22, 2017

People’s Daily: China and the U.S. Roles in the North Korean Nuclear Crisis

People’s Daily recently published a commentary summarizing the roles that China and the United States have been playing in the North Korean nuclear crisis. The author started with a complaint about the completion of the deployment of THAAD in South Korea. China has made solemn protests to South Korea about THAAD. The commentary went on to reason that China will not protect North Korea because of China’s consistent peninsula denuclearization position. On the other hand, the United States is only using the crisis to expand its strategic reach. The commentator expressed the belief that sanctions are only half of the key to the problem. The other half is peace talks rather than any military deployment. While China has been trying its best to maintain the stability of the region, the U.S. is really taking advantage of the situation to serve the interest of U.S. arms vendors and dealers, as well as to strengthen its “leadership power” in the region.

Source: People’s Daily, September 8, 2017

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