U.S.-China 2013 Barometer

John L. Graham

Despite the frequent dustups between the United States and China such as the current accusations of cyber-theft of American companies’ intellectual property by Chinese hackers, the relationship between the two countries grows ever stronger. Almost all 19 of the metrics that comprise the Long Institute’s US-China Barometer continued to move in a positive direction during 2012. Along with GDP/capita both travel and exports between the two countries grew. Cross-national investments also increased. While internet usage increased, software piracy and corruption (bribery) declined in both countries. Collaboration in R&D across the two countries increased. The yuan continued to strengthen against the dollar. The mediation services of the World Trade Organization increasingly prevented damaging trade wars. There were a few prominent negatives in the Barometer as well: The trade deficit of the United States increased. Also, Chinese per capita use of energy and their associated CO2 footprint both increased.

The stated purpose of the Long Institute is to “…develop important relationships between the U.S. and China...” Toward that end the Institute every March publishes the US-China Barometer, a measure of perhaps the most important relationship between countries in the world. The Barometer provides a multidimensional representation of the relationship based on a compilation of most recent and pertinent data.

We have endeavored to collect and present the data objectively by using mostly third-party sources such as the World Bank. Where both American and Chinese sources exist we have discovered some substantial discrepancies – a good example is in Foreign Direct Investment. In the future we will collaborate with our colleagues in China toward determining the best ways to manage such discrepancies.

All the statistics that comprise the Barometer are available in a download available on the Long Institute website. Imbedded in the power-point presentation that you are welcome to download there are brief interpretative notes and the data themselves. We expect and seek your criticism so that we might improve the Barometer in future years. Feel free to comment on our choice of metrics and our own biases that we have had trouble seeing. Please send your comments to John L. Graham at jgraham@uci.edu.

For additional information CONTACT:

John L. Graham
Professor Emeritus of International Business
The Paul Merage School of Business
John S. & Marilyn Long Institute for U.S.-China Business & Law
University of California, Irvine
949-824-8468