The 8th Seminar on Asia and Pacific Economies took place at Xi’an Jiaotong-Liverpool University (XJTLU) on the 28th and 29th of May 2021. This is an annual event that explores topics related to but not restricted to the Asia Pacific region with particular attention to the Chinese economy.
Professor Jorg Bley, Dean of International Business School Suzhou (IBSS) at XJTLU, welcomed participants to the event, which was co-organized with the important think tank Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) and features 30 presenters from universities and policy-making institutions. Some of them are from domestic prestigious universities such as Zhejiang University, Nankai University, Wuhan University, Shanghai-Jiaotong University, Hunan University, Sun-Yat Sen University, and others who participate online due to the pandemic are from Leibniz University of Hannover, University College Dublin, ADBI, Indian Institute of Technology Madras and the University of Calgary.
The Senior Consulting Economist Peter Morgan from ADBI also provided opening remarks and expressed his gratitude towards the organizing committee. Yang Chen, one of the co-organizers, then invited Professor Jorg Bley and Associate Professor Nimesh Salike to pull off the ribbon for the plaque that marks the soft launch of the Society for Advancing Economic Studies (SAES). SAES is established with a vision to become one of the leading research institutions in China with the focus on interdisciplinary economic studies.
Across two days and multiple parallel sessions, participants presented their research papers exploring various topics including fintech and financial literacy, banking and finance, Chinese economy on infrastructure, demography, digitalization and productivity, financial market, education and skills, international trade, international investment and innovation.
Each paper was allocated to a discussant who provided comments on the strength and weakness of the paper and suggested ways for future improvement. Longzhou Wang, a PhD candidate from the University of Calgary said, “this is a high-quality conference which is better than most of the conference I have attended in the U.S. and Canada. I got a lot of good comments to revise the paper, and benefited a lot from the open-floor discussions.”
“It is part of the efforts of the International Business School Suzhou (IBSS) to promote research in the themes such as development economics, financial and money market, trade and investment, environment and energy, and build a network of researchers,” commented by the Head of Economics Department Dr Ye Bai.