The Weekly Pigeon (October 7, 2018)

10-7 Brief

Does IP reform in China signal an end to IP theft?

Bloomberg reported that malicious Chinese microchips were embedded in servers sold to Apple and Amazon, raising grave concerns about supply chain security. Trump’s strategy has been to impose tariffs on Chinese high tech industries, although China has made significant progress in reforming its IP policies in recent years. This may not be enough to assuage US concerns—government sources say that there remains a huge discrepancy between US and Chinese understandings of IP, and that it is suspected that China has actually continued to develop more advanced and surreptitious forms of hacking.

What are the sources of China’s comparative advantage in biotech?

A huge population and access to data unrestricted by privacy legislation no doubt has played a part in China’s ‘great leap forward’ in biotech, but recent soul-searching on the part of Silicon Valley has identified other key factors: benefits from previous cooperative deals with American biotech companies, Chinese engineers’ longer hours and different work ethic, as well as reforms to expedite approval for new drugs.

Will Chinese international students be caught in the US-China crossfire?

The White House considered the restriction of visas for foreign STEM students as a national security strategy against Chinese espionage, although the proposal was shelved in December. Beginning in June, new policies from the Trump administration to shorten the visas of Chinese students in fields including robotics and aviation will be implemented by the State Department. Asian-American activists and lawmakers have rallied in protest against a new House of Representatives bill aimed at “cracking down” on espionage from China, arguing that it would only inflame anti-Asian sentiments and excuse tactics based on racial profiling.

 

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