Concerns Over China’s Industrial Policies Underlie Trade War Threat
The United States and China are in talks to prevent a full-fledged trade war after the two biggest economies announced proposed tariffs against one another. The trade war fears may be easing but the coming days are still full of uncertainty.
As the world’s second biggest economy, China’s economic policies’ produce a salient spillover effect on the rest of the world. China’s promotion of strategic industries with the power of the state is seen as unfair competition. The concern is not just from the United States. Long Yongtu, China’s former chief negotiator for WTO entry, believes the best settlement for the dispute is a more open attitude from China, turning the simmering trade war into another round of trade negotiation.
New Troika to Head China’s Financial Agencies
The appointments of Yi Gang, Guo Shuqing and Liu Shiyu to oversee the People’s Bank of China, the China Securities Regulatory Commission and the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission were revealed in March. Guo was also named the party chief and deputy governor of the central bank.
Financial analysts believe that the shakeup on basis of the new supervision pattern of “one bank and two commissions” reveals China’s urgent demand for financial risk control, information sharing and coordination of actions between different regulators so as to avoid policy loopholes and regulatory arbitrage.
Deciphering Fast-tracked Pinduoduo
Pinduoduo (PDD), one of China’s fastest-growing e-commerce unicorns, has accumulated more than 300 million consumers since its founding in 2015 by incentivizing users with discounts to invite friends to buy in group. Its GMV in 2017 has exceed 100 billion yuan, putting it in third place behind Alibaba and JD.com.
PDD’s explosive growth over the past two years is partly thanks to its strategy of targeting smaller cities and their more price-sensitive residents. It’s next breakthrough as a platform depends on the supply chain adjustment and overall brand transformation. The upgrading competition between the social commerce app and Taobao, which dominates in search and news feeds, will be a highlight of China’s e-commerce future.
Self-driving Safety In Question After Fatal Uber Crash
An Uber self-driving test vehicle struck and killed a pedestrian on March 18th in Tempe, Arizona, which is believed to be the first fatality involving a fully autonomous car. According to the video released by the police, there were no significant signs of the SUV slowing before the crash and Uber’s backup driver in the car appeared distracted and didn’t look up until roughly the time of the collision.
The accident could do further harm to already fragile consumer trust and raise new questions about autonomous-vehicle technology and the regulation and legislation around it. However, the investors believe the negative emotional effect on the self-driving tech, which is sold as something that makes transportation safer, won’t last long.
When CAR-T Therapy Can Be Available in China
On March 13th, Nanjing Legend Biotechnology Co. got approval from the China Food and Drug Administration (CFDA) for CAR-T clinical trials, the first in China. Compared with existing anti-cancer therapies aimed at prolonging life and improving living quality, CAR-T therapies are intended curing different types of cancers. Insiders expect that the first CAR-T product in China could be approved in 2020 or even 2019 at the earliest.
All this buoys investors and the industry. However, it doesn’t come cheap, with costs per patient of $800,000 to $1.5 million for a single treatment including the therapy and hospital expenses. Meanwhile, CAR-T therapies have shown strong results fighting blood-borne cancers like lymphoma and leukemia but have yet to crack more common solid tumors, including breast, lung, and colon cancers, which count for 96% of cancer cases.