Changing China

Giant on the move

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from Global Investing:

What worries the BRICs

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Some fascinating data about the growing power of emerging markets, particularly the BRICs, was on display at the OECD's annual investment conference in Paris this week. Not the least of it came from MIGA, the World Bank's Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, which tries to help protect foreign direct investors from various forms of political risk.

MIGA has mainly focused on encouraging investment into developing countries, but a lot of its latest work is about investment from emerging economies.

This has been exploding over the past decade. Net outward investment from developing countries reached $198 billion in 2008 from around $20 billion in 2000. The 2008 figure was only 10.8 percent of global FDI, but it was just 1.4 percent in 2000.

Not surprisingly, the lion's share comes from the BRICS -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- which together made up 73 percent of outflows last year. BRIC outward investment jumped to $144.3 billion in 2008 from $29.6 billion three years earlier.

from Global Investing:

Time to kick Russia out of the BRICs?

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It may end up sounding like a famous ball-point pen maker, but an argument is being made that Goldman Sach's famous marketing device, the BRICs, should really be the BICs. Does Russia really deserve to be a BRIC, asks Anders Åslund, senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, in an article for Foreign Policy.

Åslund, who is also co-author with Andrew Kuchins of "The Russian Balance Sheet", reckons the Russia of Putin and Medvedev is just not worthy of inclusion alongside Brazil, India and China  in the list of blue-chip economic powerhouses. He writes:

from MacroScope:

Why the BRICS like Africa

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There is little doubt that the BRICs -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- have become big players in Africa. According to Standard Bank of South Africa, BRIC trade with the continent has snowballed from just $16 billion in 2000 to $157 billion last year. That is a 33 percent compounded annual growth rate.

What is behind this? At one level, the BRICs, as they grow, are clearly recognising commercial and strategic opportunities in Africa. But Standard Bank reckons other, more individual, drivers are also at play.

from India Insight:

India, China leaders move to ease new strains in ties

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While Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's meeting with Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari in Russia captured all the attention,  Singh's talks with Chinese President Hu Jintao may turn out to be just as important in easing off renewed pressure on the complex relationship between the world's rising powers.

India said this month it will bolster its defences on the unsettled China border, deploying up to 50,000 troops and its most latest Su-30 fighter aircraft at a base in the northeast.

from MacroScope:

Victory for emerging BRICs?

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Emerging market ministers, particularly those from the BRIC economies -- Brazil, Russia, India and China -- are painting this weekend's G20 meeting as a victory in dragging them out of the shadows of global policy-making.

The finance ministers' statement included the promise of more money for the International Monetary Fund and regional development banks, on whom struggling emerging economies rely for support.

Argentina see off sorry Brazil

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Messi and RonaldinhoThe cheers before kickoff in the Beijing Workers’ Stadium were for five-times world champions Brazil and Ronaldinho. At the final whistle, the Chinese crowd rose to acclaim Argentina after a 3-0 win against nine-man Brazil sent them through to the Olympic final.

China may be a relatively untapped soccer market, but the 50,000 plus crowd knew that the best team had won on the night.

South American rivalry to spice up the Games

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Argentina celebrateOnly one thing would give Argentina more pleasure than winning their second Olympic gold and that would be to stop Brazil from winning their first in the process.

The Olympic soccer tournament does not cut much ice in Europe but it is taken much more seriously in South America. Brazil have won the World Cup five times, the Copa America eight and the Confederations Cup twice and their failure to add an Olympic gold to their collection rankles.

Beijing podcast — day nine

The podcast team reflect on insane Usain, Phelps fatigue and the most dangerous man at the Beijing Olympics.

I’m joined by Julian Linden, Belinda Goldsmith, Brian Homewood, Erik Kirschbaum and Neil Maidment to look at the dafter side of the Beijing Games.

A Ronaldinho revival? Don’t speak too soon

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Ronaldinho scoresRonaldinho’s two-goal performance against New Zealand in Sunday’s Olympic Games has already been hailed as some sort of revival after his miserable last season with Barcelona.

The former World Player of the Year showed flashes of his best form in the 5-0 win with plenty of cheeky flicks, shimmies and stepovers. And, of course, he grinned.

Dunga far from happy despite Brazil win

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Ronaldinho shoots

If there was an Olympic gold medal for whingeing then Dunga, coach of the Brazilian soccer team, would be among the early contenders.

The 1994 World Cup winning captain, who as a player was an example of resilience and dedication to the cause, is not a happy camper.

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