Daily Archives: July 9, 2017

Apple Pay expected to arrive this week

Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Service, introduces Apple Pay during an Apple event at the Flint Center in Cupertino, California, Sept 9, 2014. Stocks of mobile payment related companies soared on Tuesday over speculation that Apple Inc will introduce its cash-free smartphone payment service to China this week.Apple Pay, a new way of making purchases in retail stores that was developed by the United States smartphone maker, will boost the mobile payment business as local players like Xiaomi Corp and Alibaba Group Holding also roll out similar services.The supposed launch date was leaked by the social media account of Guangzhou-based China Guangfa Bank on Tuesday. The bank said in a post on instant messaging app WeChat that Apple Pay will be available in the country by 5 am on Thursday. The message was later deleted.Apple said in December that it will launch the wireless payment business in China-its biggest overseas market-partnering with the nation’s No 1 bank card association, China UnionPay.China UnionPay said it will announce the launch time with Apple later; Apple did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment.Fueled by the looming Apple Pay entry, shares of 30 Chinese companies that provide mobile payment technologies surged by an average of 6.69 percent on Tuesday, according to data from market tracker Royal-Flush Information.Eastcom peace Technology Co, a Guangdong-based maker of mobile payment terminals, and Nantian Electronic Information, a payment platform developer, led the advance. Both companies hit the 10 percent increase ceiling early in the trading day.Datang Telecom Technology Co, a mobile communications hardware maker, also saw its stocks jump by 6.11 percent from the day before.Li Chao, a Beijing-based analyst from iResearch Consulting Group, said Apple Pay will help open up the Chinese smartphone payment market, where e-commerce giant Alibaba now controls the lion’s share.”It will be difficult for Apple Pay to challenge Alibaba’s payment services in the short run, but the availability of Apple Pay will certainly attract more people paying at the counters with smartphones instead of reaching for their wallet,” Li said.Wu Yiyao in Shanghai contributed to this story.

China needs to modernize its agriculture

There are many ways to lower the production cost of agriculture. For China, the most practical way is to allow farmers to rent out their small patches of land, so as to form bigger farms and liberate more surplus labor from the countryside. Meanwhile, the state needs to adjust its financial policies to sponsor the transformation of rural China, says an article of Beijing News. Excerpts:The question of whether China needs to increase its grain imports has led to a heated discussion in the country. Some people say increasing grain imports can save the government a lot of agricultural subsidies, protect the natural environment, and save water. Others worry that over reliance on imported food will threaten China’s national food security.The price of China’s agricultural products is much higher than the world market, because the government purchases grains from farmers at a high price, and because China’s agricultural production is very inefficient, as farmland in China is divided into small patches making it unfit for modern agricultural equipment.The obvious price gap between home and abroad makes imported food much more competitive in China. Were it not for the imported grains, the price of food in China would be much higher, and people would need to spend more money buying food.But China is not a large-scale grain importer yet. Last year, the price of wheat, corn and rice on the domestic market was 5 percent, 6 percent and 25 percent higher than that of the imports after tariffs. And the price gap of bean, rape seed and pork is about 15 percent. It means China has the potential to lower the prices of its agricultural products, if its land reform can be well implemented to pave the way for the modern agriculture.In China, people spend more than 36 percent of their income on food. The fluctuation of food prices directly influence people’s livelihood.The high food prices have already become a negative factor affecting the people”s buying power. In stead of resorting to imports to lower the food price, China urgently needs to make breakthroughs in its rural land reform and promote agricultural finance. If these reforms can realize their goals, China has the conditions, in the long run, to become a net exporter of agricultural products.

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