Over the past 25 years, China has become the world’s preeminent manufacturer, churning out everything from running shoes to Apple products. Powering that ascent was heavy foreign direct investment combined with a seemingly inexhaustible pool of cheap labor. But now, as the Chinese economy slows, wages rise and the workforce atrophies, the decades-long manufacturing boom may be ending. To help deliver China from industrial decline, the Chinese leadership is betting on automation. However for Beijing to become the world’s robotic leader, there is an even more complex issue behind updating robotic technology: how to handle the displacement of large numbers of Chinese workers?
Having delayed serious structural reforms, China faces eye-watering overcapacity in heavy industries. Steel production volume is more than double that of the next four leading producers combined: Japan, India, the United States and Russia. Aluminum production capacity reached 40 million tons last year, exceeding global consumption by 9 million tons. Most remarkably, between 2011 and 2013 China produced more cement than the US did during the entire 20th century—6.6 gigatons, compared to the US’s 4.5. What can China possibly do about this excess capacity that is weighing on the balance sheets of debt-ridden firms reeling from China’s economic slowdown?
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Laurence Barron, Chairman of Airbus Group China, on the company’s growth in China’s expanding aviation sector
As awareness increases, Chinese consumers are taking to electric vehicles. But just how evolved is the Chinese electric car industry?
As China changes, companies are being forced to adopt China Plus One strategies and look at other countries for manufacturing.
Examining the possible reasons behind the merger of two Chinese train manufacturers, China CNR Corp. and CSR Corp.
The sharing economy has threatened traditional industries in the West in the last few years. Now it’s gaining a foothold in China.
This week, we saw the debut of Alibaba’s bonds, the new China-Australia FTA, and China’s factory output shrank thanks to the APEC conference.