business

Immigration and Chinese reserves

While I’m putting together my big piece (whose name and topic will not yet be spoken), I did an immigration commentary for this week’s issue. Basically, an observation that in a world where goods, services, ideas, and capital move easily across borders, it becomes harder and harder to put up barriers to labor. Take a look, and let me know what you think.

And my comrade Peter Coy did a story examining the large foreign exchange reserve that China is maintaining. He concluded that China’s risk-averse leadership may want to insure that if there is an internal political or economic crisis, the country has enough reserves to keep the factories humming without depending at all on foreign lenders (remember that China’s factories depend on a lot of imported goods and materials, making the country the third largest importer in the world). Remember that the Chinese leadership have to consider the possibility of a situation where they have to impose internal peace by force (like Tiananmen Square) while keeping the factories running so that the workers are employed. They don’t want to be dependent on anyone else.

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