China Insights

GCiS shares a mix of China economy and business observations, industry articles based on recently published multi-client reports, infographics composed with public statistics and annual reviews of China demographics.


Understanding the US China Trade Imbalance: What is Really Driving Chinese Exports?

A Snapshot of Imbalance

The China-US trade imbalance is as contentious as ever. In previous years this would come into the spotlight and then fade, come back and fade again. Now however this issue seems likely to remain in the spotlight continually, as the imbalance keeps growing larger, US unemployment remains high, and there is a presidential election underway in the US. In fact the leading Republican candidate, Mitt Romney, has made it his position to slap import tariffs on Chinese goods if China does not allow the Yuan to appreciate. From his point of view and that of many in America, US-China trade is very imbalanced, in China’s favor, and the Chinese government directly enables this through an artificially low exchange rate, among other measures. The rhetoric and potential consequences are getting serious.

And yes, this deficit is large: $234 Bn in 2011, through October, and set to surpass the record of $273 Bn in 2010, with China now accounting for over 40% of the total US trade deficit- up from only about 20% ten years ago. With four dollars in imports from China for every one dollar of exports to China, it is a lopsided relationship, as measured by ex-im figures. As long as the difference is so large, this issue is not going away.

When trying to put a finger on the causes and remedies to the China-US current trade imbalance it would be useful to gain an understanding of what is really driving these exports, and who is exporting. Before this, let’s first have a quick look at the trade numbers in the China-US context:

Figure 1: Snapshot of US-China Trade Imbalance (2001-2010)

US China trade balance 2001-2010 - GCiS China Market Research

Source: US Census Bureau      Figures are Nominal, non-adjusted

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Moving Rivers? Opportunities for Foreign Companies in the China Centrifugal Pump Market

This article is based on a GCiS multi-client report: China Centrifugal Pumps Market Research Report.

Of the total centrifugal pump market, only abut 28% of all revenues can be attributed to foreign companies. In the municipal government industry, however, that figures is closer to 40%. But why? This article addresses how criteria for purchasing pumps differ across end-users what that means for foreign suppliers, and how a 100-year-long project will continue to drive the market for centrifugal pumps. 

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Hydraulic Components in China

This article is based on a GCiS multi-client report: China Hydraulic Components Market Research Report.

Hydraulics have a variety of important applications, from aerospace to automotive to construction. Though China leads the world in low cost parts and machinery, a drive for higher quality products is affecting the industry. These new offerings from Chinese suppliers could upset the market share of current leading global suppliers, but when, and how?

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China Domestic Companies Capitalizing on the Commoditization of Energy-Efficient Air Source Heat Pump Water Heaters

This article is based on a GCiS multi-client report: China Heat Pumps Market Research Report.

The overall heat pump market is growing very quickly in China, although a closer look into the market creases reveals that foreign suppliers are not engaging in some of the hottest segments, particularly air source water heaters in southern China. Commoditization by Chinese manufactures has been a common business plan, and it seems to be paying off for large domestic appliance firms.

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China Intelligent Lighting Systems Market

This article is based on a GCiS multi-client report: China Intelligent Lighting Systems Market Research Report.

Intelligent lighting systems are a new take on convention lighting configurations. This article takes a cursory glance at modern lighting solutions and development trends in the lightings system industry, with a focus on the development of the Chinese market for intelligent lighting; both among commercial and residential users.

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