The 12th National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China recently. The NPC, the annual gathering of senior Communist Party cadres from all over China to listen to the leadership’s plans for the next 12 months, was a more muted affair than in previous years, but it gave valuable signals as to what kind of business environment Irish companies can expect in future. Photograph: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

Recent weeks have witnessed two events that affect Ireland’s trade with the world’s most populous continent. China’s National People’s Congress (NPC e(...)

Mini Sky City: construction took just 19 days

It’s been less than a year since Asia Briefing visited Changsha, the capital of Hunan province, but in that time the skyline has changed dramatically (...)

Lower prices for oil and other commodities are delivering China serious savings in its purchases of oil.  Photograph: Jerome Favre/Bloomberg

The “new normal” of lower growth that premier Li Keqiang talks about is also having an impact on demand for oil and other commodities.Lower prices for(...)

With Irish milk exports to China worth €400 million, familiarity with China’s food safety rules has become a key requirement for food companies seeking to export there.

With Irish milk exports to China worth €400 million, and with a ban on Irish beef exports to the country lifted, familiarity with China’s food safety (...)

Twitter’s Hong Kong office will seek out mainland companies which want to advertise overseas. Photograph: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

Twitter, which has its Europe Middle East and Africa (EMEA) headquarters in Dublin, is opening an office in Hong Kong to try to attract mainland Chine(...)

The entrance to Shanghai Free Trade Zone. It was introduced nearly two years ago, but the trade zone concept has so far failed to take off in a meaningful way. Photograph: Reuters/Carlos Barria

As growth slows, reforming the business environment in China has become a plank of the government’s strategy to keep the economy on track, and Preside(...)

Prime minister Li Keqiang said China will lower the annual GDP growth target to about 7 per cent from 7.5 per cent, the slowest in 22 years. Photograph: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

For decades now the conventional narrative on China has been massive inflows of capital for manufacturers to take advantage of the cheap labour and ex(...)

Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister: some  analysts feel that he  has so far failed to bite the bullet on meaningful reforms. Photograph: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

For several years the question has been when, or if, India will finally take off and register a prolonged period of sustained economic growth. Free-ma(...)

Alibaba Group executive chairman Jack Ma:  In the Bloomberg Billionaires list, which updates daily, he is the richest person  in China (and 15th richest in the world), with a net worth of $34.7 billion (€31.36 billion). Photograph: Pichi Chuang/Reuters

Establishing who is the richest person in China is a challenging task, given the dizzying share market movements and the pace with which the country’s(...)

The writing has been on the wall for a while, but what a few weeks it has been for Irish beef – Ireland is now the only European country to be allowed(...)