China has ambitious goals for developing and deploying electric vehicles (EV). The stated intention is to “leapfrog” the auto industries of other countries and seize the emerging EV market. Since 2009, policies have included generous subsidies for consumers in certain locations, as well as strong pressure on local governments to purchase EVs. Yet four years into the program, progress has fallen far short of the intended targets. China has only about 40,000 EVs on the road, of which roughly 80% are public fleet vehicles such as buses and sanitation vehicles.
May 30, 2014
Op-Ed, Asia Times
By Hui Zhang, Senior Research Associate, Project on Managing the Atom
Many Chinese worry that as Japanese politics moves rightward, it could result in the country seeking its own weapons. Beijing's concerns have intensified with its confrontation with the Abe administration over historical recognition and territorial issues. In this op-ed, Hui Zhang argues that it is time for Tokyo to stop reprocessing and eliminate its surplus plutonium as soon as possible. Tokyo should address concerns over its reprocessing plans and plutonium stocks. To reduce suspicions, Tokyo should take specific steps to abide strictly by its "no surplus plutonium policy".
May 20, 2014
Op-Ed, Bloomberg View
By Meghan L. O'Sullivan, Jeane Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School
Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping are likely to find they have more in common than ever as they meet this week, starting today in Shanghai for a Sino-Russian summit and later in St. Petersburg for an economic forum. Both men are coming under sharp criticism from the West: Putin for his annexation of Crimea and Xi for his forays into the contested waters of the South China Sea. For all the fascinating and potentially consequential strategic conversations that may take place between these two men, the one to look out for will be whether they conclude a much-delayed energy deal to pipe huge amounts of Russian natural gas to China starting in 2018.
By Morena Skalamera, Associate, Geopolitics of Energy Project
A central debate in the study of energy geopolitics concerns the relative importance of the Sino-Russian energy alliance and the lack of the long awaited deal in natural gas. The deadlock in natural gas is all the more puzzling when contrasted to the two countries’ flourishing ties in oil. In this paper, Morena Skalamera explores these developments by comparing the outcomes of the two deals and highlighting the distinctiveness of oil trade vis-à-vis gas trade.
May 15, 2014
After years of extraordinary measures by the Federal Reserve in the aftermath of the Great Recession, emerging markets appear to have weathered the disruption fairly well but are facing new headwinds as economic growth falls short of expectations. That was the sobering assessment of three experts on the global economy at a panel titled “The Fed and Emerging Markets: Another Crash?” held at Harvard Kennedy School’s “IDEASpHERE” on May 15, 2014.
May 14, 2014
Op-Ed, The South China Morning Post
By Joern Huenteler, Associate, Energy Technology Innovation Policy research group
"...[U]ntil now, Beijing's response to unmet energy demand has focused primarily on securing resources overseas, and building infrastructure for imports. China now generates more electricity from imported coal than from nuclear, wind and solar combined. Without a strong, coordinated policy shift, the country will depend on fuel imports for most of its energy consumption by the time it becomes a developed country."
May 5, 2014
Op-Ed, Project Syndicate
By Jeffrey Frankel, James W. Harpel Professor of Capital Formation and Growth
Headlines around the world this week trumpeted a watershed moment for the global economy. As the Financial Times put it, “China poised to pass US as world’s leading economic power this year.” This is a startling development – or it would be if the claim were not essentially wrong. In fact, the United States remains the world’s largest national economy by a substantial margin.
April 11, 2014
Journal Article, ASAN Forum
"China's rapid rise in national power across the board and the pace and scale of its increasing investment in the PLA, together with its limited willingness to release a breakdown of how this money is spent, ensure that the annual announcement of its official defense budget for the forthcoming fiscal year attracts considerable attention."
March 31, 2014
Op-Ed, Project Syndicate
By Martin Feldstein, George F. Baker Professor of Economics at Harvard University
"China’s economic policymakers want to shift the country’s production away from exports and heavy industry, and to increase the share of consumption in GDP. A relatively simple institutional change to encourage health-care insurance could do much to promote the latter goal," writes Martin Feldstein.
March 10, 2014
Op-Ed, Financial Times
By Robert B. Zoellick, Non-resident Senior Fellow
"Twenty years ago Zhu Rongji, China’s former premier, shrewdly used negotiations over his country’s accession to the World Trade Organisation to open its domestic markets to greater competition and import international standards into its legal system," writes Robert Zoellick. "This produced more than a decade of strong growth, and gave China a greater stake in global trade."