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2018
2018 Reforms Beckon For India And Modi
China in driving seat toward greener future
2017
Business must get on board with B&R, Brexit, CPTPP
China leads way amid need for green tech progress
Asia Needs more Dialogue
Solutions to urban pollution may prove complex
Spread of ESGs could herald new global movement
Investing in quality education is imperative if India wants to reap demographic dividends
China needs to lead in new multi-stakeholder world
China’s B&R initiative leading a resurgence of Asia
Education is key - but long-term: Can we survive?
New wave of robots will be beneficial to all
China needs to continue with its ‘heavy lifting’
Time is right for Chinese firms to invest in Europe
Robots to the rescue for China?
Asian Multinationals are Going Global, But to Where?
China ratchets forward with energy efforts
China’s calm necessary for globalization push
Bridging managerial gaps involves trust-building
China well-placed to power its future through green technology advances
China's new 'springtime' is here
2016
China’s moves show it’s banking on the future
Mindset for action at the G20 summit will be determined by Chinese presidency
Chinese head-hunting intensifies for rare managers that can steer overseas firms
US talk of isolation jars with growing links in Europe and Asia
Electoral rhetoric on global trade not in sync with reality
Is it time to be prudent and consider austerity policies again?
What will we do if we have no oil?
Unlock talent by finding the right fit for a person
The benefits are real and tangible
Trade along China’s ‘One Belt, One Road’ won’t succeed without the currency of trust
Reasons for optimism about the long term
2015
Can big oil go green and win?
Poorer Nations Could Sway Climate Talks
Combating Idleness and Deprivation
How China can be a model of food sustainability for the developing world
Kyoto II – Is it a Done Deal?
A meeting of the two largest economic powers
Why China will experience a 'soft' landing
Beware of superstitions
The Elephant and Dragon move ahead
G-7 target on fossil fuels raises many questions
Why Battle for Net Neutrality in the US Matters Globally
China’s resurgence – the ‘normal new’
Wanted: A managerial culture that embraces cultural differences
China's early education plan a smart investment in the future
The New Normal for China and India
2014
China's infrastructure push offers a sure track to better growth
US-China climate pact a good start, but not quite enough
Rethink the human’s place in the ‘digital revolution’
China springs a carbon surprise
Infrastructure - the invisible hand in full view
Dialogue vital for survival of Iraqi nation
China must nurture a new generation of beautiful minds
Great expectations in China and India
GM Cereals – The Pros and Corns
Time to be Honest about Our Energy Prospects
Weathering the Storm of Climate Change
Making a Big Decision? Beware of Your Biases
West Deserves Better Logistics Infrastructure
Digital Currencies do Represent the Future
From 'Printed' Houses to Wooden Skyscrapers
It’s time to bail out our schools, not our firms
Solution to India’s housing shortage – print new ones!
And the most promising green technologies of 2014 are ...
Transport infrastructure key to domestic, export growth
Oil stopgaps: Not worth risking
2013
Why the US should grant Edward Snowden amnesty
May we be more optimistic!
China headed for another massive social experiment?
A dialogue that worked
Yes, politicians deserve vacations - because we benefit
NPOs, NGOs invaluable as creators of dialogue
Look closer and ask: Is America reinventing itself?
Boston bombings case underlines need for dialogue
Millennium Development Goals or own goals?
As usual it's about balance - and timing - of course
Chinese strategists make right moves for growth
2012
Preparing for tomorrow
Austerity or growth?
Japan in danger of becoming 'just a place to fly over'
Beware of the business cycle?
An inconvenient truth
Limited offer sale: Buy a country
Where did our money go?
Leading from behind - a year of elections is almost over
Driving towards a green future
Waiting for springtime
Preserve or Perish
Startlingly similar Asia policy for Obama, Romney
Globalisation remains an irresistible trend
Google has the edge in smartphone war
U.S. Braces for China's Rise
Mankind’s General Scourge
The summer holidays are over and nothing has changed!
Put the hidden trillions to work
Making sense of India’s woes and wonders
Storm in a teacup!
Let’s give bad bankers a venue to admit their sins
News is about depth, not puff or velocity
Booming India, but too few toilets
Delayed Court decisions doesn't mean one may continue to play 'Great Game'
We need media to reflect on data and offer public a balanced view
Big polluters can lead in forging common purpose
The weighty issue of choosing a leader
EU-India Relations - Facing similar challenges
Educating with a goal
The Judicial Malaise
We are growing out, but not growing up
EU´s retrenchment enigma
Urbulence in the Eurozone and the effect on SMEs
Skolkovo May Help Russia to Diversify
Make things more effective
Tapping into the Commonwealth connection
Innovative models for public finance
Facebook revolution but Indian style
The feel-good factor
Asian investors - a private equity opportunity
India needs to be taller and stronger
China´s low sales volume...
Nations playing leapfrog
Shafts of sunlight
What webs we weave
As performers go to Davos, the circus steals the show
Can we control the politicians?
 
2011
Europe’s reminiscence
China firms should go for win-win in overseas ventures
Of procrastination...
Making sense of profiteering
Truth about financial mess must be laid bare
Small is also beautiful
China can help Europe with debt crisis
Excising the cancer of global corruption
Education, a critical asset
Arab uprisings set in motion forces of creative destruction
A new era of change
We must ensure better education for all
Beijing wary of bankrolling a lost cause
Asean's re-emergence as a local and global leader
Why India's Role in the Global Economy is Still Work in Progress
Its the leadership, stupid!
Reverse globalisation: The new buzzword
China in driving seat toward greener future
By Frank-Jürgen Richter
Global Times, February 2, 2018
 

The recent announcement that China will ban production of 553 vehicle models that exceed pollution limits as part of the country's efforts to combat air pollution will not have been a surprise to many Chinese manufacturers, coming only months after the closure of small, ineffective manufacturers of electric vehicles to push consolidation in the sector. However, the new ban restricts the sales of some cars made by Audi, Mercedes and Chevrolet. That will be a shock to the global automotive industry as they have relied on "fleet average" pollution limits, which included the percentages of non-polluting cars they may produce in the coming years. Now all manufacturers must comply with limits for each vehicle sold in China.

The fact that China is serious about reducing atmospheric pollution shouldn't be a surprise. By June 2014, as academics were fuming about pollution and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a body under the auspices of the UN, was preparing for its momentous Paris meeting, China and the US agreed to deeply reduce their nations' pollution levels as neither country could deal with this problem alone. China promised to raise production of electrical energy from zero-emission sources to 20 percent by 2030 and the US pledged to cut its emissions to 26-28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025. The two nations' joint statement makes very interesting reading.

Given the backing of the leaders of the two major energy consumers - China and the US - the 2015 Paris meeting had almost a foregone conclusion. All nations agreed on the Paris Accord and within a few months it was ratified.

The leaders of China and the US met again when the G20 Summit was held in Hangzhou in September 2016 and they reaffirmed their climate change pledges. But by January 2017, China was saying that all signatories must stick to the 2015 Paris Accord to limit global temperature increases to well below 2C, and that walking away from the pact would endanger future generations. China knew that then president-elect Donald Trump had vowed to renege on the Accord (which he did officially in June 2017) and that the UK and Europe were mired in Brexit negotiations so might lose sight of the Paris Accord. Later, while pulling out of the Paris Accord, Trump said the US would stop contributing to the Green Climate Fund, a UN program that since 2013 has seen industrialized economies pledge $10.3 billion to address the effects of climate change. Meanwhile, China made 20 billion yuan ($3.1 billion) available for setting up the China South-South Climate Cooperation Fund to support developing countries in the fight against climate change.

Although China was a major polluter it has made great changes. To match its economic development plans it has had to produce more electricity - for its industry, its trains and for its growing middle class.

To the media's surprise it has built more coal-fired power stations but it has decommissioned many old and inefficient units and is producing power more efficiently with less pollution. It is building eight large-scale carbon capture and storage plants to attempt to reduce its carbon footprint via this new technology. Thus, by August 2017 it had reached its 2020 solar energy installation target, becoming the largest producer of solar power on earth; and in June, Northwest China's Qinghai Province ran on 100 percent renewables for seven continuous days.

To combat smog, many cities worldwide have decided to ban fossil-fuelled vehicle use by 2025-30. Research in China indicates its automotive market will be all-electric by 2030, following the government's edict to have local producers ramp up their electric vehicle percentages to greater than 12 percent by 2020. This is also occurring across the globe. Volvo, ostensibly a Swedish manufacturer of cars and trucks, has said it will cease making petrol and diesel cars by 2019. Yet this may not be a surprise as Volvo Cars is owned by Chinese auto giant Geely. Of the 90 percent of Geely's sales that it aims to electrify by 2020, the company expects that 65 percent will be hybrids and 35 percent pure EVs. All aim to reduce city smog and reduce overall global pollution.

But the future is not only about changing engines in vehicles, it is about absorbing disruptions. Tim Cook, chief executive of Apple, suggests that their EV-car project is the "mother of all AI projects." It is a combination of three different factors - self-driving cars, electric vehicles and ride-sharing. They would be digitally connected for safety, allowing EV-trucks to work as mini-trains over long distances.

Young people are forcing change, as many of them no longer own a car. In China, Didi Chuxing has become one of the world's top seven ride-hailing platforms. More people will soon accept autonomous, on-demand EV cars and ride sharing. All these changes will totally re-make the auto industry.

 

The author is founder and chairman of Horasis, a Switzerland-based global visions community organization.

 


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