Раздел: Економика

экономические новости

Report: Asia-Pacific Factories Lead in Using Digital Technology

She may not be the warmest waitress, but she serves a nice, hot cup of “Joe” at a café on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City.

Though this robotic barista is still getting help from her human counterpart, she is a signal that Asia is ahead of the curve in embracing new technologies ahead of the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

A recent report from PwC Global, a professional services firm, studied 1,155 manufacturing businesses based on how much they were embracing and incorporating innovations in technology, from drones to 3-D printing.

Across the board, companies in the Asia-Pacific region scored higher than their counterparts elsewhere in the world.

In Thailand, for instance, manufacturing companies have widely adopted new technologies to transform their operations.

“Many are using robots to assemble products at their factories to rely less on human labor, reduce costs, and boost overall efficiency,” said Vilaiporn Taweelappontong, consulting lead partner at PwC Thailand.

​ASEAN catches up

The report graded firms based on questions about the kinds of tools they were introducing into their workplaces. For example, manufacturers were asked if they made use of virtual reality; 44 percent in the Asia Pacific said they did compared with 34 percent in the United States and 19 percent in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

The regional group Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) reports that small and medium enterprises are using new technology to catch up to bigger rivals.

“Digitization is enabling SMEs across ASEAN to participate in cross-border trade, allowing them to grow and scale their businesses while reducing costs,” said Bidhan Roy, a general manager at Cisco Systems Pte Ltd.

​Benefits of youth

Observers say the Asia-Pacific region benefits from its youth.

The relatively young population means people are amenable to different work environments and business operations, as well as having a keen interest in using new technology.

Another advantage? The region’s economies are also somewhat young, with many just opening up to global trade in the last two decades. In addition its underdeveloped infrastructure has the ability to adapt for future needs, like public transit or drone deliveries.

“Asian companies have the advantage of setting up robust digital operations from essentially a blank slate in terms of factory automation, workforce, and even organizational IT [information technology] networks as a whole,” the PwC report said.

Baby steps

But more is needed to make these companies successful.

Cisco Systems’ Roy noted that small and medium firms “are at varying stages of maturity in terms of digital adoption” and could use collaboration with governments and corporations.

PwC Thailand’s Vilaiporn agreed on the benefit of collaboration.

“Thailand 4.0 will only be successful if both the government and private sectors understand their roles in fostering investment and focusing on research and development, as well as equipping the workforce with necessary skill sets and capabilities,” he said.

The “4.0” refers to the latest industrial revolution, which goes beyond mechanization and automation. It entails business processes becoming more efficient through a comprehensive application of technology, from smart devices to machine learning.

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Report: Asia-Pacific Factories Lead in Using Digital Technology

She may not be the warmest waitress, but she serves a nice, hot cup of “Joe” at a café on the outskirts of Ho Chi Minh City.

Though this robotic barista is still getting help from her human counterpart, she is a signal that Asia is ahead of the curve in embracing new technologies ahead of the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

A recent report from PwC Global, a professional services firm, studied 1,155 manufacturing businesses based on how much they were embracing and incorporating innovations in technology, from drones to 3-D printing.

Across the board, companies in the Asia-Pacific region scored higher than their counterparts elsewhere in the world.

In Thailand, for instance, manufacturing companies have widely adopted new technologies to transform their operations.

“Many are using robots to assemble products at their factories to rely less on human labor, reduce costs, and boost overall efficiency,” said Vilaiporn Taweelappontong, consulting lead partner at PwC Thailand.

​ASEAN catches up

The report graded firms based on questions about the kinds of tools they were introducing into their workplaces. For example, manufacturers were asked if they made use of virtual reality; 44 percent in the Asia Pacific said they did compared with 34 percent in the United States and 19 percent in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

The regional group Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) reports that small and medium enterprises are using new technology to catch up to bigger rivals.

“Digitization is enabling SMEs across ASEAN to participate in cross-border trade, allowing them to grow and scale their businesses while reducing costs,” said Bidhan Roy, a general manager at Cisco Systems Pte Ltd.

​Benefits of youth

Observers say the Asia-Pacific region benefits from its youth.

The relatively young population means people are amenable to different work environments and business operations, as well as having a keen interest in using new technology.

Another advantage? The region’s economies are also somewhat young, with many just opening up to global trade in the last two decades. In addition its underdeveloped infrastructure has the ability to adapt for future needs, like public transit or drone deliveries.

“Asian companies have the advantage of setting up robust digital operations from essentially a blank slate in terms of factory automation, workforce, and even organizational IT [information technology] networks as a whole,” the PwC report said.

Baby steps

But more is needed to make these companies successful.

Cisco Systems’ Roy noted that small and medium firms “are at varying stages of maturity in terms of digital adoption” and could use collaboration with governments and corporations.

PwC Thailand’s Vilaiporn agreed on the benefit of collaboration.

“Thailand 4.0 will only be successful if both the government and private sectors understand their roles in fostering investment and focusing on research and development, as well as equipping the workforce with necessary skill sets and capabilities,” he said.

The “4.0” refers to the latest industrial revolution, which goes beyond mechanization and automation. It entails business processes becoming more efficient through a comprehensive application of technology, from smart devices to machine learning.

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50 Years After Concorde, US Start-Up Eyes Supersonic Future

Luxury air travel faster than the speed of sound: A US start-up is aiming to revive commercial supersonic flight 50 years after the ill-fated Concorde first took to the skies.

Blake Scholl, the former Amazon staffer who co-founded Boom Supersonic, delivered the pledge this week in front of a fully-restored Concorde jet at the Brooklands aviation and motor museum in Weybridge, southwest of London.

The company aims to manufacture a prototype 55-seater business jet next year but its plans have been met with scepticism in some quarters.

“The story of Concorde is the story of a journey started but not completed — and we want to pick up on it,” Scholl said at an event that coincided with the nearby Farnborough Airshow.

“Today … the world is more linked than it’s ever been before and the need for improved human connection has never been greater.

“At Boom, we are inspired at what was accomplished half a century ago,” he added, speaking in front of a former British Airways Concorde.

Boom Supersonic’s early backers include Richard Branson and Japan Airlines, and other players are eyeing the same segment.

Speaking to AFP at Farnborough on Wednesday, Scholl indicated that the air tickets could be beyond the reach of some.

“What we’ve been able to do thanks to advances in aerodynamics and materials and engines is offer a high speed flight for the same price you pay in business class today,” he said. 

He said this works out to around $5,000 (4,300 euros) round-trip across the Atlantic.

“Now I know that might sounds like a lot, because it is, but it’s actually the same price you pay for a lay flat bed on airlines today,” he said.

‘Baby Boom’

Boom Supersonic’s aircraft, dubbed Baby Boom, is expected by the company to fly for the first time next year.

The company is making its debut at Farnborough and hopes to produce its new-generation jets in the mid-2020s or later, with the aim of slashing journey times by half.

The proposed aircraft has a maximum flying range of 8,334 kilometres (5,167 miles) at a speed of Mach 2.2 or 2,335 kilometres per hour.

If it takes off, it would be the first supersonic passenger aircraft since Concorde took its final flight in 2003.

The Concorde was retired following an accident in 2000 in which a Concorde crashed shortly after takeoff from Paris, killing 113 people.

“The one accident that did happen on Concord actually happened on the runway,” Scholl told AFP on Wednesday.

“It had nothing to do with high-speed flight so there’s no actual barrier to creating a highly safe, efficient supersonic airplane and we have super high standards for safety.

“We’ll be going through the same safety testing process that every other aircraft goes through and the FAA (US Federal Aviation Administration) and EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) will not let our airplane fly unless we pass a very high safety bar.”Some analysts meanwhile remain sceptical over the push back into supersonic, with consumer demand booming for cheap low-cost carriers.

“Supersonic is not what passengers or airlines want right now,” said Strategic Aero analyst Saj Ahmad.

Ahmad said supersonic jets were “very unattractive” because of high start-up development costs, considerations about noise pollution and high prices as well as limited capacity.

‘Untried and untested’

Independent air transport consultant John Strickland noted supersonic travel was unproven commercially.

“If there is an economic downturn or something happens where the market for business class traffic drains away, then you have nothing else left to do with that aircraft,” Strickland said.

“I think it’s going to be some time before we see whether it can establish a large viable market … in the way that Concorde never managed to do.”

These concerns have not stopped interest from other players.

US aerospace giant Boeing had last month unveiled its “hypersonic” airliner concept, which it hopes will fly at Mach 5 — or five times the speed of sound — when it arrives on the scene in 20 to 30 years.

And in April, NASA inked a deal for US giant Lockheed Martin to develop a supersonic “X-plane.”

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50 Years After Concorde, US Start-Up Eyes Supersonic Future

Luxury air travel faster than the speed of sound: A US start-up is aiming to revive commercial supersonic flight 50 years after the ill-fated Concorde first took to the skies.

Blake Scholl, the former Amazon staffer who co-founded Boom Supersonic, delivered the pledge this week in front of a fully-restored Concorde jet at the Brooklands aviation and motor museum in Weybridge, southwest of London.

The company aims to manufacture a prototype 55-seater business jet next year but its plans have been met with scepticism in some quarters.

“The story of Concorde is the story of a journey started but not completed — and we want to pick up on it,” Scholl said at an event that coincided with the nearby Farnborough Airshow.

“Today … the world is more linked than it’s ever been before and the need for improved human connection has never been greater.

“At Boom, we are inspired at what was accomplished half a century ago,” he added, speaking in front of a former British Airways Concorde.

Boom Supersonic’s early backers include Richard Branson and Japan Airlines, and other players are eyeing the same segment.

Speaking to AFP at Farnborough on Wednesday, Scholl indicated that the air tickets could be beyond the reach of some.

“What we’ve been able to do thanks to advances in aerodynamics and materials and engines is offer a high speed flight for the same price you pay in business class today,” he said. 

He said this works out to around $5,000 (4,300 euros) round-trip across the Atlantic.

“Now I know that might sounds like a lot, because it is, but it’s actually the same price you pay for a lay flat bed on airlines today,” he said.

‘Baby Boom’

Boom Supersonic’s aircraft, dubbed Baby Boom, is expected by the company to fly for the first time next year.

The company is making its debut at Farnborough and hopes to produce its new-generation jets in the mid-2020s or later, with the aim of slashing journey times by half.

The proposed aircraft has a maximum flying range of 8,334 kilometres (5,167 miles) at a speed of Mach 2.2 or 2,335 kilometres per hour.

If it takes off, it would be the first supersonic passenger aircraft since Concorde took its final flight in 2003.

The Concorde was retired following an accident in 2000 in which a Concorde crashed shortly after takeoff from Paris, killing 113 people.

“The one accident that did happen on Concord actually happened on the runway,” Scholl told AFP on Wednesday.

“It had nothing to do with high-speed flight so there’s no actual barrier to creating a highly safe, efficient supersonic airplane and we have super high standards for safety.

“We’ll be going through the same safety testing process that every other aircraft goes through and the FAA (US Federal Aviation Administration) and EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) will not let our airplane fly unless we pass a very high safety bar.”Some analysts meanwhile remain sceptical over the push back into supersonic, with consumer demand booming for cheap low-cost carriers.

“Supersonic is not what passengers or airlines want right now,” said Strategic Aero analyst Saj Ahmad.

Ahmad said supersonic jets were “very unattractive” because of high start-up development costs, considerations about noise pollution and high prices as well as limited capacity.

‘Untried and untested’

Independent air transport consultant John Strickland noted supersonic travel was unproven commercially.

“If there is an economic downturn or something happens where the market for business class traffic drains away, then you have nothing else left to do with that aircraft,” Strickland said.

“I think it’s going to be some time before we see whether it can establish a large viable market … in the way that Concorde never managed to do.”

These concerns have not stopped interest from other players.

US aerospace giant Boeing had last month unveiled its “hypersonic” airliner concept, which it hopes will fly at Mach 5 — or five times the speed of sound — when it arrives on the scene in 20 to 30 years.

And in April, NASA inked a deal for US giant Lockheed Martin to develop a supersonic “X-plane.”

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Elon Musk Apologizes for Comments About Cave Rescue Diver

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has apologized for calling a British diver involved in the Thailand cave rescue a pedophile, saying he spoke in anger but was wrong to do so.

There was no immediate public reaction from diver Vern Unsworth to Musk’s latest tweets.

Musk’s initial tweet calling Unsworth a “pedo” was a response to a TV interview Unsworth gave. In it, he said Musk and SpaceX engineers orchestrated a “PR stunt” by sending a small submarine to help divers rescue the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach from a flooded cave. Unsworth said the submarine, which wasn’t used, wouldn’t have worked anyway.

“My words were spoken in anger after Mr. Unsworth said several untruths …” Musk tweeted.

“Nonetheless, his actions against me do not justify my actions against him, and for that I apologize to Mr. Unsworth and to the companies I represent as leader. The fault is mine and mine alone.”

Musk’s Sunday tweet, later deleted, had sent investors away from Tesla stock, which fell nearly 3 percent Monday but recovered 4.1 percent Tuesday. Unsworth told CNN earlier this week that he was considering legal action. He did not respond to requests for comment from The Associated Press.

In his latest tweets, Musk said the mini-sub was “built as an act of kindness & according to specifications from the dive team leader.”

Musk has 22.3 million followers and his active social media presence has sometimes worked well for Tesla. The company has said in its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it doesn’t need to advertise because it gets so much free media attention.

But straying away from defending his companies into personal insult brought Musk some unfavorable attention at a time when Tesla, worth more than $52 billion, is deep in debt and struggling for profitability. 

In northern Thailand on Wednesday, the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach answered questions from journalists, their first meeting with the media since their rescues last week. Doctors said all are healthy.

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Elon Musk Apologizes for Comments About Cave Rescue Diver

Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has apologized for calling a British diver involved in the Thailand cave rescue a pedophile, saying he spoke in anger but was wrong to do so.

There was no immediate public reaction from diver Vern Unsworth to Musk’s latest tweets.

Musk’s initial tweet calling Unsworth a “pedo” was a response to a TV interview Unsworth gave. In it, he said Musk and SpaceX engineers orchestrated a “PR stunt” by sending a small submarine to help divers rescue the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach from a flooded cave. Unsworth said the submarine, which wasn’t used, wouldn’t have worked anyway.

“My words were spoken in anger after Mr. Unsworth said several untruths …” Musk tweeted.

“Nonetheless, his actions against me do not justify my actions against him, and for that I apologize to Mr. Unsworth and to the companies I represent as leader. The fault is mine and mine alone.”

Musk’s Sunday tweet, later deleted, had sent investors away from Tesla stock, which fell nearly 3 percent Monday but recovered 4.1 percent Tuesday. Unsworth told CNN earlier this week that he was considering legal action. He did not respond to requests for comment from The Associated Press.

In his latest tweets, Musk said the mini-sub was “built as an act of kindness & according to specifications from the dive team leader.”

Musk has 22.3 million followers and his active social media presence has sometimes worked well for Tesla. The company has said in its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission that it doesn’t need to advertise because it gets so much free media attention.

But straying away from defending his companies into personal insult brought Musk some unfavorable attention at a time when Tesla, worth more than $52 billion, is deep in debt and struggling for profitability. 

In northern Thailand on Wednesday, the 12 Thai soccer players and their coach answered questions from journalists, their first meeting with the media since their rescues last week. Doctors said all are healthy.

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Trump’s Top Economic Adviser Accuses China’s President of Delaying Trade Deal

U.S. President Donald Trump’s top economic adviser accused Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday of stalling efforts to resolve a growing trade dispute with the U.S.

White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said he believed lower-level Chinese officials want to end tariffs the world two largest economic powers have imposed on each other, but that Xi has refused to amend China’s technology transfer and other trade policies.

“So far as we know, President Xi, at the moment, does not want to make a deal,” Kudlow said in an interview on CNBC. “I think Xi is holding the game up,” Kudlow said, and added, “The ball is in his court.”

Kudlow said China could end U.S. tariffs “this afternoon” if it took measures that include cutting tariff and non-tariff barriers to imports. The U.S. has also called on Beijing to end the “theft” of intellectual property and allow full foreign ownership of companies operating in China.

Kudlow also said he expects European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to make a trade offer when he meets with Trump at the White House next week.

Trump has demanded that the EU cut its 10 percent tariffs in auto imports at a time when his administration is conducting a national security study that could result in a 25 percent U.S. tariff on imported vehicles.

A 25 percent tariff would have a significant financial impact on European and Japanese automakers, and while Juncker has said he would make an trade offer to Trump next week, he did not offer details.

Earlier this month, Trump imposed 25 percent tariffs on Chinese goods valued at $34 billion, with another $16 billion set to take effect in the near future. Trump has also announced 10 percent tariffs on an additional $200 billion of Chinese products that could be imposed as early as next month.

Beijing retaliated to the first tariffs by placing duties on the same dollar amount of American imports, and has vowed to counter any further U.S. actions.

Trump imposed the tariffs after an Office of the U.S. Trade Representative investigation concluded China was violating intellectual property rules and forcing U.S. companies operating in China to hand over technology secrets in exchange for access to the Chinese market.

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Trump’s Top Economic Adviser Accuses China’s President of Delaying Trade Deal

U.S. President Donald Trump’s top economic adviser accused Chinese President Xi Jinping Thursday of stalling efforts to resolve a growing trade dispute with the U.S.

White House National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow said he believed lower-level Chinese officials want to end tariffs the world two largest economic powers have imposed on each other, but that Xi has refused to amend China’s technology transfer and other trade policies.

“So far as we know, President Xi, at the moment, does not want to make a deal,” Kudlow said in an interview on CNBC. “I think Xi is holding the game up,” Kudlow said, and added, “The ball is in his court.”

Kudlow said China could end U.S. tariffs “this afternoon” if it took measures that include cutting tariff and non-tariff barriers to imports. The U.S. has also called on Beijing to end the “theft” of intellectual property and allow full foreign ownership of companies operating in China.

Kudlow also said he expects European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to make a trade offer when he meets with Trump at the White House next week.

Trump has demanded that the EU cut its 10 percent tariffs in auto imports at a time when his administration is conducting a national security study that could result in a 25 percent U.S. tariff on imported vehicles.

A 25 percent tariff would have a significant financial impact on European and Japanese automakers, and while Juncker has said he would make an trade offer to Trump next week, he did not offer details.

Earlier this month, Trump imposed 25 percent tariffs on Chinese goods valued at $34 billion, with another $16 billion set to take effect in the near future. Trump has also announced 10 percent tariffs on an additional $200 billion of Chinese products that could be imposed as early as next month.

Beijing retaliated to the first tariffs by placing duties on the same dollar amount of American imports, and has vowed to counter any further U.S. actions.

Trump imposed the tariffs after an Office of the U.S. Trade Representative investigation concluded China was violating intellectual property rules and forcing U.S. companies operating in China to hand over technology secrets in exchange for access to the Chinese market.

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China Looks to Stronger EU Trade Ties Against Threat of US Tariffs

China bolstered ties with the European Union this week with more large markets in the pipeline to keep its exports healthy as the United States levies import tariffs, analysts say.

 

At the 20th China-EU leaders’ meeting Monday in Beijing, Chinese President Xi Jinping said his country stands ready to promote bilateral economic development. Premier Li Keqiang noted at the summit China had recently cut import tariffs on autos, medicine and consumer goods from the EU.

 

The 28-member European Union, including some of the world’s wealthiest countries, received $437 billion in exports with China last year, which accounted for 20 percent of the bloc’s total shipments from overseas.

 

Officials in Beijing have also pledged to ease trade friction with India this year.

 

“The EU is the second largest trading partner to China,” said Felix Yang, an analyst with the financial advisory firm Kapronasia in Shanghai. “While Trump’s tariffs hit the prospects of the Chinese economy, the EU is becoming a more important market for China.”

 

A reserve in case of trade war

 

China and the United States have headed toward what economists call a “trade war” for much of the year. U.S. President Donald Trump believes China trades unfairly, giving it a $375 billion trade surplus in 2017.

 

This month Trump approved import tariffs of 25 percent on more than 800 Chinese products. The taxes, already in effect, hit Chinese goods worth about $34 billion. Trump has threatened tariffs on goods worth another $450 billion, and China’s commerce ministry said it would make a “necessary counterattack.”

China counts the United States as its No. 1 trading partner, but major markets such as the EU, India and Southeast Asia are high on the list. The summit on Monday with EU leaders should help China solidify EU trade, economists say.

 

“You have to explore opportunities to grow your next largest set of trading partners, and this is where it’s really all about,” said Song Seng Wun, an economist with the private banking unit of CIMB in Singapore. “In case the trade fight with the U.S. were to escalate, it’s good your trading relationship with your remaining partners can improve and hopefully over time pick up some of the slack.”

 

China will need Europe to buy technology that the United States might sell if relations were better, said Liang Kuo-yuan, president of Taipei-based think tank Polaris Research Institute. The threat of a trade war now “slows” China’s acquisition of tech for R&D, he said.

 

“If they can’t develop their own, they would still look for Western technology,” Liang said. “At that point, the EU becomes a major source. If the route to Europe hasn’t been blocked, then the slowdown wouldn’t be so slow.”

 

The European Union will avoid a trade war, European Council President Donald Tusk said after the summit. But the bloc that has its own trade deficit with China advocates new global trade rules and World Trade Organization reforms.

 

Europe, like the United States, worries about China’s protection of technology and other intellectual property rights. In April the EU brought a case to the World Trade Organization against Chinese legislation that it said “undermines the intellectual property rights” of European companies.

The EU wants to “bravely and responsibly reform the rules-based international order,” Tusk was quoted saying on the EU’s website. “This is why I am calling on our Chinese hosts… to jointly start this process from a reform of the WTO.”

 

China voiced support for the WTO reforms at the Monday summit, the European side said in a statement.

 

India and Southeast Asia

 

China’s commerce minister said in April his country would keep working with India to ease trade differences caused by market access issues — resulting in a deficit for India.

Southeast Asia might be next for lighter treatment, Song said. China and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations are finishing talks on a 16-nation Regional Cooperation Economic Framework, a trade pact that some see as an antidote to the Trans Pacific Partnership deal that Trump exited in 2017.

 

Eventually other countries may join China in facing the United States as many expect trade problems, said Zhao Xijun, associate dean of the School of Finance at Renmin University of China. A tariff battle with China could spill into other parts of Asia, and Trump has rattled other countries with an “America First” policy that’s often regarded abroad as protectionist.

 

China’s trade ties with Japan, South Korea, India and Southeast Asia will “continuously be promoted,” Zhao said. Those countries link to the same supply chain with its own “rules” that cannot be broken by a single country, he said.

 

“It’s not such a simple matter,” Zhao said. “The supply chain has its own rules. It’s not something the American government can break because it says it wants to break it.”

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China Looks to Stronger EU Trade Ties Against Threat of US Tariffs

China bolstered ties with the European Union this week with more large markets in the pipeline to keep its exports healthy as the United States levies import tariffs, analysts say.

 

At the 20th China-EU leaders’ meeting Monday in Beijing, Chinese President Xi Jinping said his country stands ready to promote bilateral economic development. Premier Li Keqiang noted at the summit China had recently cut import tariffs on autos, medicine and consumer goods from the EU.

 

The 28-member European Union, including some of the world’s wealthiest countries, received $437 billion in exports with China last year, which accounted for 20 percent of the bloc’s total shipments from overseas.

 

Officials in Beijing have also pledged to ease trade friction with India this year.

 

“The EU is the second largest trading partner to China,” said Felix Yang, an analyst with the financial advisory firm Kapronasia in Shanghai. “While Trump’s tariffs hit the prospects of the Chinese economy, the EU is becoming a more important market for China.”

 

A reserve in case of trade war

 

China and the United States have headed toward what economists call a “trade war” for much of the year. U.S. President Donald Trump believes China trades unfairly, giving it a $375 billion trade surplus in 2017.

 

This month Trump approved import tariffs of 25 percent on more than 800 Chinese products. The taxes, already in effect, hit Chinese goods worth about $34 billion. Trump has threatened tariffs on goods worth another $450 billion, and China’s commerce ministry said it would make a “necessary counterattack.”

China counts the United States as its No. 1 trading partner, but major markets such as the EU, India and Southeast Asia are high on the list. The summit on Monday with EU leaders should help China solidify EU trade, economists say.

 

“You have to explore opportunities to grow your next largest set of trading partners, and this is where it’s really all about,” said Song Seng Wun, an economist with the private banking unit of CIMB in Singapore. “In case the trade fight with the U.S. were to escalate, it’s good your trading relationship with your remaining partners can improve and hopefully over time pick up some of the slack.”

 

China will need Europe to buy technology that the United States might sell if relations were better, said Liang Kuo-yuan, president of Taipei-based think tank Polaris Research Institute. The threat of a trade war now “slows” China’s acquisition of tech for R&D, he said.

 

“If they can’t develop their own, they would still look for Western technology,” Liang said. “At that point, the EU becomes a major source. If the route to Europe hasn’t been blocked, then the slowdown wouldn’t be so slow.”

 

The European Union will avoid a trade war, European Council President Donald Tusk said after the summit. But the bloc that has its own trade deficit with China advocates new global trade rules and World Trade Organization reforms.

 

Europe, like the United States, worries about China’s protection of technology and other intellectual property rights. In April the EU brought a case to the World Trade Organization against Chinese legislation that it said “undermines the intellectual property rights” of European companies.

The EU wants to “bravely and responsibly reform the rules-based international order,” Tusk was quoted saying on the EU’s website. “This is why I am calling on our Chinese hosts… to jointly start this process from a reform of the WTO.”

 

China voiced support for the WTO reforms at the Monday summit, the European side said in a statement.

 

India and Southeast Asia

 

China’s commerce minister said in April his country would keep working with India to ease trade differences caused by market access issues — resulting in a deficit for India.

Southeast Asia might be next for lighter treatment, Song said. China and the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations are finishing talks on a 16-nation Regional Cooperation Economic Framework, a trade pact that some see as an antidote to the Trans Pacific Partnership deal that Trump exited in 2017.

 

Eventually other countries may join China in facing the United States as many expect trade problems, said Zhao Xijun, associate dean of the School of Finance at Renmin University of China. A tariff battle with China could spill into other parts of Asia, and Trump has rattled other countries with an “America First” policy that’s often regarded abroad as protectionist.

 

China’s trade ties with Japan, South Korea, India and Southeast Asia will “continuously be promoted,” Zhao said. Those countries link to the same supply chain with its own “rules” that cannot be broken by a single country, he said.

 

“It’s not such a simple matter,” Zhao said. “The supply chain has its own rules. It’s not something the American government can break because it says it wants to break it.”

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