Op-Eds

  • March 31, 2015  |  Author: Yves Tiberghien
    The announcement March 12 that the UK would join the new China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) ignited an intense debate around the world and in Canada. Luxembourg preceded the UK on March 11, Switzerland followed on March 13. France, Germany, Italy joined the movement on March 16. Since then, Austria, Turkey, and South Korea have committed to join the Bank and Australia has given...
  • March 19, 2015  |  Author: Stewart Beck
    When Canadians think of economic opportunities in Asia, most think of emerging economies with impressive projected growth rates and large GDPs, like China and India, or of more established economies, like Japan or Korea.  What most of us don’t think of is a group of economies in Southeast Asia known as the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). While the growth rate of China is...
  • March 19, 2015  |  Author: Saumitra Chaudhuri
    Since the historic federal budget of 1991 presented by then Finance Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh that launched India on a path of reform and market orientation, Budget Day in India has been high season for economic policy. On the last day of February each year, India’s Finance Minister announces the government’s major economic policies that often spark separate legislative activities and send...
  • March 5, 2015  |  Author: Stewart Beck
    Crude oil prices have dropped more than 50 per cent since June to around US$50 per barrel, causing some analysts to predict doom and gloom for Canada's oil and gas industry and economy as a whole. Newspapers across the country have highlighted layoffs, delays in new projects, and provincial budget deficits as oil sands producers and liquefied natural gas (LNG) export proponents cut costs to...
  • March 4, 2015  |  Author: Hugh Stephens
    Canada and Australia share much of the same heritage and history, and these days Prime Ministers Harper and Abbott seem to be each other's best friends, but their strategies in Asia couldn't be further apart, at least when it comes to concrete results. Australia grasped the reality some time ago that its future is inexorably linked with Asia. Australia, like Canada, still looks to the United...
  • January 26, 2015  |  Author: Stewart Beck
    U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry was a keynote speaker at Vibrant Gujarat recently, and U.S. President Barack Obama will be Chief Guest at India's Republic Day ceremonies next week. My, how the tides have changed in the India-U.S. relationship! It seems like just yesterday that animosity between the two countries reached a peak with the Kobragade affair. Of course, there are larger issues at...
  • January 7, 2015  |  Author: Stewart Beck
    When it comes to international institutions, we live in a world of acronyms. AIIB is just the newest one among many, but it is one that Canada should be paying attention to. Why? Because it will be a key that unlocks the door to a world of opportunity for Canadian businesses in Asia. AIIB stands for China's proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a multilateral development bank that will...
  • November 28, 2014  |  Authors: Justin Elavathil, Trang Nguyen
    The landscape for trade diplomacy in Asia is rapidly changing, and Canada will need to ratchet-up its game in 2015 if it wants to remain apace with its partners in the region. Perhaps it seems downbeat to characterize Canada as playing catch-up in the region given the government’s recent achievements with trading partners in Asia. For some, 2014 could be viewed as a banner year for trade...
  • November 28, 2014  |  Authors: Eva Busza, Kyae Lim Kwon
    On the last day of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit in Beijing, in the Great Hall of the People, United States President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping toasted to the momentous climate deal they had just struck. The US committed to reduce emissions by 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2025, and for the first time China accepted a cap on its emissions, pledging...
  • November 17, 2014  |  Author: Yuen Pau Woo
    The APEC summit has only just ended, but like the return of hazy skies over Beijing, clouds of uncertainty surrounding the regional forum have again drifted overhead. This is familiar weather for APEC, a grouping that has faced questions about its future for well over a decade. On the face of it, China’s year of hosting APEC has given a level of attention to the regional grouping that should...
  • November 17, 2014  |  Author: Yuen Pau Woo
    It was perhaps only a matter of time before Chinese President Xi Jinping shared his idea of transforming the China dream into an ‘Asia-Pacific dream’. Xi’s announcement was timely, as the PRC’s role in the Asia-Pacific region is larger, broader, and more heavily contested than ever.President Xi made the announcement during a speech to industry leaders at the opening of the Asia Pacific Economic...
  • October 30, 2014  |  Author: Stewart Beck
    Two months after leaving India as Canada’s High Commissioner, I returned two weeks ago as part of British Columbia Premier Christy Clark’s official delegation to the country. Stepping out into the hot and humid Delhi night, everything looked the same but there was certainly a sense of change in the air: everyone from taxi drivers, to business people and politicians seem to feel a new confidence...
  • October 24, 2014  |  Author: Hugh Stephens
    Asia, a major driver of global economic growth, is both a source of competitive imports but increasingly an important destination for exports for the Canadian economy, a growing market for resource-based commodities but also agri-food products, specialized manufactures, financial and other services and, potentially, energy. British Columbia sends 44 percent of its exports to Asia, the highest...
  • October 14, 2014  |  Authors: Eva Busza, Nathan Allen
    Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne is planning a trade mission to China this October. While the premier wants to spread the word about Ontario’s green tech sector, some of her constituents want her to cancel the trip to send a message on human rights. Critics think she should cancel the trip in solidarity with Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protestors. Writing for the Toronto Sun, veteran columnist...
  • September 18, 2014  |  Author: Len Edwards
    The state visit to Canada by President Park Guen-hye on Sept. 20-22 inaugurates a major new chapter in Canada’s 50 year relationship with South Korea, headlined by the signature of the Canada-Korea free-trade agreement completed earlier this year. While the CKFTA’s direct economic benefits will be significant, and properly celebrated by both governments, its indirect impact should not be...
  • September 18, 2014  |  Author: Hugh Stephens
    It took the impending visit to China by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in November to finally dislodge the Canada-China Foreign Investment Protection Agreement from limbo. The Chinese ratified the agreement, signed in September 2012, almost immediately but there was a long and unexplained delay in Canada. While the important final step in bringing the agreement into force came as more...
  • September 12, 2014  |  Author: Eva Busza
    When you talk about doing business in China, most people will admit that the country potentially represents a huge and growing market full of opportunity. But virtually in the same breath, they follow up with three caveats: it’s really hard to do business there and become profitable; even if you manage to gain entry, you won’t be there long because your intellectual property will be stolen; and...
  • August 22, 2014  |  Author: Hugh Stephens
    On July 29, during Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird’s visit to China, the Canadian Government announced that Canada’s National Research Council (NRC) had been the victim of a cyber-attack by a "highly sophisticated Chinese state-sponsored actor" which had recently managed to hack into the NRC’s computer systems. Exactly when the attack occurred, or what information was compromised...
  • August 5, 2014  |  Author: Nathan Allen
    On July 22, electoral authorities announced that Joko Widodo (a.k.a. Jokowi) had won Indonesia’s presidential election. From the Canadian viewpoint, this is a favourable outcome. Unlike his rival, Prabowo Subianto, Jokowi does not have a record of human-rights violations that could impede relations between our countries, and of the two candidates, he was the most open to economic co-operation...
  • July 25, 2014  |  Authors: Douglas Goold, Amitendu Palit
    Prime Minister Narendra Modi is expected to impart new dynamism to India’s ongoing trade negotiations. Currently, trade negotiations with Europe are mostly stuck on tariffs for European cars in the Indian market, intellectual property, data security, access to government procurement markets and movement of Indian professionals to Europe. Increasing foreign equity participation to 49 per cent in...

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