Despite the lovefest carefully choreographed by China‘s increasingly sophisticated image makers last week, the United States is engaged in a high-stakes battle for economic and military supremacy in Asia and elsewhere. That battle is more complicated than the casual observer might imagine. There is a growing sense among many Asia- and China-watchers that the U.S. is engaged in a historic contest with not one, but two Chinas.
On one hand, U.S. officials are sparring with China‘s civilian government over economic issues: currency manipulation, balance of trade and market access. On the other, military and diplomatic officials are shadowboxing with China‘s military establishment.… Seguir leyendo »
Just as the Japanese economy is exhibiting signs of a recovery – the central bank says demand for loans is increasing, and exports are up four months in a row – its left-leaning government is putting the finishing touches on economic legislation that will turn back the reform clock, increase operating costs for business, and make it more difficult to hire and fire workers. It’s not just the current business environment the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) is compromising.
Breaking an important campaign promise, the DPJ trimmed this year’s budget for science and technology in favor of a plan to pour billions of dollars into programs the party says are intended to redistribute wealth and address a growing poverty problem.… Seguir leyendo »