Frank Tang

Frank Tang

Frank is a contributor to Inkstone. He is a economics reporter for the South China Morning Post.

Location
Beijing
Language spoken
English, Mandarin
Areas of Expertise
Chinese economy and finance
China looks inwards as it plans for economic ‘worst-case scenario’
China is turning inward and looking to its domestic market, rather than international trade, to revive its economy in what has been described as preparation for a “worst-case scenario” that might see it decoupling from America and the rest of the West.   President Xi Jinping told dozens of top economic advisers in Beijing over the weekend that China was pursuing a new development plan where “domestic [trade] circulation plays the dominant role.” “For the future, we must treat domestic demand as the starting point and foothold as we accelerate the building of a complete domestic consumption system, and greatly promote innovation in science, technology and other areas,” Xi said in comments pub
Mastercard can finally set up shop in China
Mastercard has won Chinese government approval to enter China’s payments market. It’s a major step in the American company’s decades-long effort to reach the country’s 400 million middle-class consumers. China’s central bank on Tuesday said it had approved an application from Mastercard’s joint venture to set up a business to settle payments in yuan, the official Chinese currency. Beijing has long insisted on state control of key financial infrastructure despite Washington’s insistence on giving American companies wider access to the Chinese market. The approval by China was granted three weeks after Beijing and Washington signed their initial trade deal, in which China promised it would fur
Economic shock of coronavirus may ‘hit harder than Sars’
Cities across China have become virtual ghost towns as public fear grows over the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Early signs indicate the outbreak could deal a heavy blow to the country’s already fragile economic recovery. As the virus has fanned out from the central Chinese city of Wuhan, in Hubei province, authorities have taken increasingly aggressive measures to contain the Sars-like virus: curbing public transport, shuttering entertainment venues and shortening business hours. The rapid transmission of the coronavirus, partly due to initial mishandling by officials in Wuhan and Hubei, comes as China is trying to stabilize economic growth in 2020 following the signing of a phase one t
Chinese GDP growth to fall below 6% in 2020, says think tank
China’s economic growth rate will dip below 6.0% next year, according to a major think tank in Beijing. The country is a key driver of global growth, so its economic performance is likely to have far-reaching consequences for trading partners around the world. The Beijing-based National Institution for Finance and Development (NIFD) was the first government-linked think tank to make a prediction of sub-6% growth. It said on Wednesday that China’s economic growth rate would slow to 5.8% in 2020 from an estimated 6.1% this year. This year’s growth forecast is near the lower end of the range between 6% to 6.5% growth that the Chinese government is targeting for 2019. The declining trend undersc
Trump’s 2020 campaign materials are about to be hit by his China tariffs
President Donald Trump’s escalation of the trade war with China could soon be about to hit him where it hurts, with large quantities of materials for his 2020 presidential campaign set to be affected by import tariffs. Workers at Fuyang Jiahao, a small factory in Fuyang city about 400 miles north of the megacity of Shanghai, are busy producing flags with slogans including “Trump 2020” and “Keep America Great.” But with national flags and other articles made from textiles set to be subject to a new 15% tariff rate from September 1, Trump’s own campaign could soon be paying more for its goods imported from China. “Our production has not yet been affected,” said Yao Dandan, the owner of the Fuy
Marriages in China hit 11-year low. Here’s why that means trouble
Marriages in China hit an 11-year low last year, posing an additional challenge to efforts to boost consumption, stabilize the economy and tackle the nation’s looming demographic problems. A total of 10.14 million couples were married in 2018, down 4.6% from the previous year, while the marriage rate dropped to 7.3 per 1,000 from 7.7 per 1,000 last year, according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs. The trend continued in the first half of 2019, with the number of marriages dropping 7.7% from a year earlier to 4.98 million. The marriage rate has fallen steadily from the recent high of 9.9% in 2013 as the younger generation avoids marriage due to financial concerns amid the weakening economy. C
As Trump disses Libra, China could be learning from it
Donald Trump said he is not a fan of bitcoin and Facebook’s proposed new digital currency, Libra.  But in China, the Libra proposal could prompt the government to speed up the development of the country’s homegrown cryptocurrencies.  ....Similarly, Facebook Libra’s “virtual currency” will have little standing or dependability. If Facebook and other companies want to become a bank, they must seek a new Banking Charter and become subject to all Banking Regulations, just like other Banks, both National... — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 12, 2019 In a recent speech, China’s former central bank governor Zhou Xiaochuan suggested Beijing could learn from Facebook and Hong Kong’s currency
Facebook’s crypto, Libra, is rattling China’s central bank
Facebook’s plans to create its own cryptocurrency, called Libra, have forced China’s central bank to step up its game in developing its own digital currency. Facebook says Libra will let consumers send money around the world easily, but the project has raised regulatory questions at home and in several other countries. A People’s Bank of China official said Libra could challenge the country’s monetary policy and even financial sovereignty, and has forced the Chinese government to speed up research into creating a version of digital currency it can control. “If [Libra] is widely used for payments – cross-border payments in particular – would it be able to function like money and accordingly h
China’s new trade weapon puts foreign companies in a bind
China’s plan to create an “entity list” of foreign companies and individuals that are deemed to be hurting Chinese interests could put many multinationals into a Catch-22 situation amid the intensifying rivalry with the United States. In a hastily arranged press conference on Friday, Chinese Ministry of Commerce spokesman Gao Feng said that China will start to implement a list for “unreliable” foreign companies and individuals, who would be punished if they were found to be blocking or cutting back supplies to Chinese companies for non-commercial purposes. The ministry did not immediately specify the possible consequences, nor did it directly link the move to the treatment of Huawei or China
A deadly pig virus has spread all over China
A swine fever epidemic has spread to all parts of China, decimating the country’s hog industry and disrupting Chinese dinner tables. The island province of Hainan has confirmed its first cases of African swine fever, meaning the pig-killing virus has spread to all 31 mainland Chinese provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions since the first infection in the country was confirmed in August. The spread of African swine fever has disrupted the supply of pork in China, which raises about half the world's pigs. Financial services firm Rabobank estimates that China is set to lose up to 200 million pigs to the disease or culling, and there is not enough pork in "the whole world combined" to