Risk Watch: China’s Social Security and Taxation Changes Could Spark Wave of Business Failure and Unemployment

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPCSC) revised China’s tax law on Aug. 31. At a glance, the revision seemed to be helpful. Individual taxpayers saw their annual tax-free threshold raised from 3,500 yuan per month to 5,000 yuan per month (60,000 yuan per year). However, in an overhaul of its income tax …

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Politics Watch: Stricter Controls Over Society Signal Greater Crisis for the CCP

Since the outbreak of the Sino-U.S. trade war in July, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has been controlling Chinese society with ever-increasing strictness. The CCP’s clamp down on religion and freedom of speech have been particularly severe, and it seems to be “maintaining stability” as though it is beleaguered. Based on our research and understanding …

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Risk Watch: What China’s Fx Reserves Looks Like Without a Trade Surplus with America

According to People’s Bank of China (PBoC) data released on Aug. 15, China’s foreign exchange balance at the end of July was 21.53 trillion yuan ($3.130 trillion). The reserves rose by 10.81 billion yuan, the seventh straight month of increases. Earlier in the month, the PBoC announced that China’s foreign exchange reserves in July amounted …

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Politics Watch: China’s $60 Billion Tariff List Looks Like a ‘White Flag’

In response to the United States plan to levy 25 percent tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods, China’s Ministry of Commerce announced $60 billion of tariffs on 5,207 items of American goods on Aug. 3. The tariffs range in rates from 5 percent to 25 percent. Previously, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) vowed to …

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Politics Watch: US Airline Taiwan Reference Change Out of Sync with Trump Policy

In April, Beijing ordered 36 international airlines to refer to Taiwan as being part of China on their website and in promotional material or face punishment. The White House subsequently declared Beijing’s demand as “Orwellian nonsense” and noted that Beijing’s attempts to “export its censorship and political correctness to Americans and the rest of the …

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Politics Watch: US-China Trade War a ‘Deathtrap’ for CCP Politics

Li Zhanshu, the head of the National People’s Congress (NPC) and third-ranking Politburo Standing Committee member, said during a July 16 meeting of the NPC’s Leading Party Members’ Group that officials must uphold the “paramount authority,” or “ding yu yi zun” (“the highest authority settles the question”) of “core leader” Xi Jinping. Li’s choice of …

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Politics Watch: China’s Finance Ministry and Central Bank Clash as Economy Worsens

In an article published on July 13, Xu Zhong, the head of research for the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), criticized China’s Ministry of Finance (MoF) for failing to actively implement fiscal policy to stimulate growth and for “playing the gangster.” On June 30, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) had published a guiding opinion that …

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The Rise and Fall of China’s Domestic Security and Legal Affairs Apparatus

By Janet Liu and Larry Ong In the five years before Xi Jinping took office in 2012, the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission (PLAC) was one of the most powerful organs of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Helmed by then-Politburo Standing Committee member Zhou Yongkang, the PLAC enjoyed an annual budget of $120 billion, …

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Politics Watch: Decoding the CCP Propaganda Shift on China, America, and Trade

On July 2, Chinese Communist Party (CCP) mouthpiece People’s Daily published on its website the first article in a series aimed at critiquing “pompous, arrogant writing” and promoting Xi Jinping’s requirements for writing. Titled “Have We Forgotten How to Write Essays?”, the commentary piece criticizes articles that exaggerate China’s achievements and mock other countries. The …

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Politics Watch: Civil Servant Wages Delayed as Local Gov’t Revenue Falls

The government of Leiyang, a city in Hunan Province, was unable to pay wages to its civil servants in May, according to mainland media reports on June 8. The backdrop: 1. Civil servants in Leiyang were supposed to receive their wages on May 15. However, their pay was only released on June 8. On June …

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