APEC 2010 Summit: Seeking Prosperity After Crisis
Tuesday, 30 November 2010
Wendy Cutler, Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Japan, Korea and APEC Affairs; Robert Hormats, Under Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs; and Kurt Tong, U.S. Senior Official at APEC reviewed the themes and outcomes of the annual APEC Summit, which took place November 12-13 in Yokohama, Japan. Themes included accelerating regional economic integration and promoting a new, sustainable growth model for the Asia-Pacific region. The speakers also explored how these issues will be carried forward during the U.S. hosting of APEC in September 2011. Several business executives also discussed key private sector initiatives being developed to support the upcoming U.S. meeting.
Monica Whaley, President of the National Center for APEC, moderated the discussion.
Thursday, 4 November 2010
Keith Rockwell, Director of the Information and Media Relations Division at the WTO, discussed the state of the international trading system and the WTO’s role within it. Professor Merit E. Janow moderated the lecture. According to Mr. Rockwell, the multilateral trading system has worked; governments haven’t resorted to protectionism, even in the face of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. Stimulus packages adopted in response to the crisis prevented world trade from contracting by an estimated 12%, and by the time the 2010 figures come in, trade is expected to have increased by 11% from 2009. However, the Doha Round of trade negotiations has stalled, and was being replaced by ever-increasing amounts of bilateral trade agreements.
Professor Janow added that protectionist pressures were indeed increasing, and that advocates of free trade should not be too optimistic yet....
Monday, 18 October 2010
Barnard Professor of Political Science Xiaobo Lü, Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism Professor and Founder of the China Digital Times Xiao Qiang, and Barnard Associate Professor of Sociology Guobin Yang convened to participate in a panel discussion moderated by Columbia Journalism School Professor Howard French. They gathered to discuss how the Internet manifests among China’s current 420 million Internet users, especially in terms of the interplay between the government and China’s citizens via online discourse. Despite government regulation, Lü argued that the Internet is a powerful tool for political change because it generates discussion about government policy among the growing number of Internet users, giving citizens the opportunity to express their opinions...
Thursday, 30 September 2010
Timothy Stratford, partner at Covington & Burling LLP and former Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for China, gave a dynamic presentation at Columbia Law School to an overflow room of students and professionals discussing the upsides and concerns of current U.S.-China economic relations. Selecting newspaper headlines from recent months as well as anecdotes from his own experience, he demonstrated the complex dynamics and ever-changing nature of these relations, exploring the underlying causes of friction in macroeconomic policy, microeconomic policy, institutional weakness, and political systems. He also highlighted tools available to both the public and private sectors to improve economic relations with China and its industries. He then answered student questions, and remained for a more in-depth discussion with members of the...
Thursday, 23 September 2010
Justin Lin, Chief Economist and Senior Vice President of Development Economics at the World Bank, delivered the inaugural N.T. Wang lecture. Focusing on lessons that China’s growth can offer to other nations, Dr. Lin emphasized the importance of each country developing its comparative advantage in order to compete in the world economy. He noted that China’s comparative advantage is its labor force and that China has learned to focus on this advantage while also utilizing technological advancements from other countries. Dr. Lin also drew attention to China’s “dual-track” economy which joins together a free market system with central planning and noted that China must move away from this inefficient model.
Shang-Jin Wei, N. T. Wang Professor of Chinese Business and Economy and...
Friday, 30 April 2010
This half-day conference, organized by the Columbia Undergraduate East Asian Studies Initiative (EASI), gathered diverse Columbia student groups, academic departments, and institutes into a collaborative and multi-disciplinary effort toward furthering the undergraduate interdisciplinary study of East Asia. Eight paper writers presented their research findings and received constructive criticism during three panel sessions. One relevant paper was “Changes in Chinese Consumer Behavior: Repercussions of Sino-Japanese Political Conflict and Negative Country Image and Japanese Business Response.”
ASC support for the EASI also contributed to publication of the Columbia East Asian Review, an annual, online, peer-review academic journal dedicated to furthering knowledge of East Asia through the promotion of research and interdisciplinary dialogue. It can...
Thursday, 22 April 2010
Dr. Jong-Wha Lee, Chief Economist of the Asian Development Bank (ADB), made a presentation about the economic recovery in Asia, possible risks to the recovery, and macroeconomic policy recommendations. He declared that Asia has already started to recover from the financial crisis. The ADB’s GDP growth projections for Asia showed a low in 2009, but 7.5% growth in 2010 and 7.3% growth in 2011. He then divided the region into countries, and GDP growth into its components. He showed that export-oriented markets such as Singapore, Malaysia, and South Korea were hit hardest by the crisis when trade collapsed and investment in these countries stopped. However, countries with large domestic markets such as China and Indonesia continued to attract investment, and still have positive investment. At present there is only mild recovery in external demand, so it cannot...
Monday, 5 April 2010
This event featured panelists Robert Z. Aliber, emeritus professor of international economics and finance at the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago; Daniel Rosen, adjunct associate professor at Columbia University and visiting fellow with the Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE); and Shang-Jin Wei, professor of finance and economics and N.T. Wang Chair in Chinese Business and Economy at Columbia Business School. Professor Janow moderated this panel discussion, which centered on China’s currency as pegged to the USD and implications for the future of U.S.-China relations.
Professor Janow opened by briefly noting the escalation of tensions between the United States and China on a number of issues including trade, arms sales to Taiwan, and the yuan. The Chinese yuan has been pegged to the USD since mid-2008 and there exist a variety of views within the United States and...
Friday, 26 March 2010
This conference has become the largest on Africa at Columbia. Relevant panels to APEC included “Aid vs. Investment,” which focused on the comparative effectiveness of aid and foreign investment in achieving economic development and advancing social and economic rights in African nations. Beginning with an examination of recent trends in foreign investment and the objectives and methods employed, participants spoke about the extent to which the incentive to seek profit is an appropriate model for sustaining capital inflow to Africa and laying the bedrock for economic self-sufficiency.
In “China-Africa Trade Summit,” speakers sought to address the major challenges and opportunities that lay ahead in trade and investment between Africa and China as they relate to issues of sustainability, economic growth and development and consumer protection. With most of the major economies trying to recover from the global economic crisis, they addressed new questions about the future of trade and...
APEC Japan 2010: In Search of a New Vision
Monday, 15 March 2010
This panel discussion explored the unprecedented coordination between Japan and the United States in preparation for the upcoming APEC summits in 2010 (Yokohama) and 2011 (Hawaii). Shigeru Nakamura, Ambassador for International Economic Affairs at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan and Chair of the 2010 APEC Senior Officials Meeting, and Kurt Tong (see #4 above), reported on the development of the agenda and goals for the meetings. Monica Whaley (see #4) moderated the discussion.
Ambassador Nakamura said that APEC is trying to adapt to a changing world, citing challenges presented by the financial crisis, food security issues, natural disasters, and pandemics. As a result, in addition to its core mission of regional economic integration and promoting balanced, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, APEC will also include an emphasis on human security issues to protect societies against this multitude of dangers. He reviewed several regional free trade agreements under...
Friday, 5 February 2010 and Saturday, 6 February 2010
Nearly a hundred graduate students presented papers on all aspects of East Asian studies, including history, economics, business, political science, literature, art history, and religion. Three panels were related to business, trade or politics: “International Relations in East Asia”; “Contemporary Politics in East Asia”; and “Global Politics and East Asia.” This event was co-sponsored by the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, as well as several other centers at Columbia.