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January, 2014

  • year of the horseAs the year of the Horse gallops in, we reign in change, adventure, decisive action success and romance. The year of the noble animal is expected to see economies and financial markets flourish, those in the fields of education, communications, real estate, energy, electronics, food, entertainment, textile and medicine will have a favorable year while those in automobile, travel, finance, mining, clothing and trading are expected to trot along.

    A fun, open and cheerful animal, the year of the Horse in general is expected to bring a more positive aura to the world. While this definitely isn’t the year to gamble your earnings, growth and innovation are expected to be the buzzwords for this year. The domesticated horse which once roamed wild and free will bring in new beginnings as well as breakthroughs in several industries from medicine to education. New theories, alternate technologies, increased efficiency and intelligent systems will be key this horse year.

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  • iphone-5s-gold-smallChina is poised to take the software industry by storm. Two notable achievement in the past few days place her at the top of the software hierarchy. In the last week, China launched her very own operating system – China Operating System, or COS as it’s become known, she also climbed ahead of India in the number of software developers and is closing the gap in the size of human resource skilled in information, communication and technology (ICT) – an area that India has dominated for over two decades.

    The combined moves mean that China now not only has the skill set to develop better software and hardware than India, but also the capabilities, infrastructure and market to nurture her own software, a feat India hasn’t managed to accomplish yet.

    According to statistics released by research firm International Data Corp (IDC), The US accounts for 19 percent of global software developers. In 2013 however, China just inched ahead of India with a 10 percent share of global software developers while India’s share is 9.8 percent. Over the past few years, mounting on a hardware dominance, China has consciously nurtured the growth of software developers. Understanding that its just as important to develop and run her own software, China underwent a massive strategy to cultivate programmers and give them English language skills. It is these army of software engineers who understand English that fueled the growth in Chinese borne, hugely popular social networking sites – Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent.

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  • Chinese tradeChina piped the US in 2013 to become the world’s largest trader with total trade rising to 7.6 percent over the year to US$4.16 trillion. While the US’s trade figures are yet to be released their 11 month trade number totalling US$3.5 trillion, signals China’s rising economic dominance worldwide. The figures also depict the yawning trade deficit China shares with India, which stood at US$ 31.4 billion in 2013, with two-way trade declining last year by 1.5 percent on account of a sharp decline in Indian exports, enabling China better bargaining power in the region.

    As reported in the Hindu, Indian exports to China last year totalled US$ 17.03 billion – a 9.4 percent fall from last year – out of US$ 65.47 total bilateral trade, according to figures released by the Chinese General Administration of Customs (GAC). Chinese exports to India, in recent years largely comprised of machinery, were up 1.6 percent.

    Despite a sagging global economy and currency appreciation, over 2013, China’s exports rose 7.9 percent to US$2.21 trillion and imports rose 7.3 percent to US$1.95 trillion. China had already become the world’s largest exporter of goods in 2009 and world’s largest importer of oil in 2013. The value of Chinese trade has roughly doubled every four years over the past three decades. The new landmark milestone for the country, will form the basis for rapid growth and expansion as outlined in the recent economic reforms announced by President Xi Jinping in November last year.

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