David Dodwell

David Dodwell

David Dodwell is the executive director of the Hong Kong-APEC Trade Policy Study Group, a trade policy think tank.

Latest from David Dodwell

Inside Out | Hong Kong can lift its misery by making happiness serious business

Focusing on economic growth has left Hong Kong sadly at 76th in the World Happiness Report. The city must get serious about tracking happiness to have a stab at a meaningful future.

19 Jan 2020 - 10:27PM

Focusing on economic growth has left Hong Kong sadly at 76th in the World Happiness Report. The city must get serious about tracking happiness to have a stab at a meaningful future.

Hong Kong can lift its misery by making happiness serious business
Outside In | If GDP doesn’t add up, how is the world to measure well-being and progress?

The world’s fixation with GDP has been questioned since the 1970s by Bhutan, which started measuring Gross National Happiness instead. Maryland is counting truly precious items like leisure. How can Apec contribute to the discussion?

18 Jan 2020 - 2:34AM

The world’s fixation with GDP has been questioned since the 1970s by Bhutan, which started measuring Gross National Happiness instead. Maryland is counting truly precious items like leisure. How can Apec contribute to the discussion?

If GDP doesn’t add up, how is the world to measure well-being and progress?
Inside Out | How Beijing’s new man in Hong Kong can avoid Chris Patten’s fatal miscalculations

Like Patten, Beijing’s Luo Huining is an odd choice for Hong Kong, a political heavyweight after a succession of technocrats. Let’s hope Luo resists the temptation to rapidly acquire firm views, acts more transparently than his predecessors and builds some trust.

13 Jan 2020 - 2:41PM

Like Patten, Beijing’s Luo Huining is an odd choice for Hong Kong, a political heavyweight after a succession of technocrats. Let’s hope Luo resists the temptation to rapidly acquire firm views, acts more transparently than his predecessors and builds some trust.

How Beijing’s new man in Hong Kong can avoid Chris Patten’s fatal miscalculations
Outside In | Fears of Hong Kong’s economic demise are unfounded. Just look at the bigger picture of Asia’s sea trade

Hong Kong’s so-called decline says more about China’s underdeveloped economy in 1997 than it does about Hong Kong now. In fact, sea trade is gravitating towards Asia and Hong Kong’s two biggest port operators are also the world’s biggest.

11 Jan 2020 - 4:50AM

Hong Kong’s so-called decline says more about China’s underdeveloped economy in 1997 than it does about Hong Kong now. In fact, sea trade is gravitating towards Asia and Hong Kong’s two biggest port operators are also the world’s biggest.

Fears of Hong Kong’s economic demise are unfounded. Just look at the bigger picture of Asia’s sea trade
Inside Out | Amid Trump discord, China must keep trying to deepen its friendship with Europe in 2020

With Trump distracted by elections and a partial trade deal on the cards, China can finally concentrate on drawing closer to Europe and dispelling any suspicions over incompatible values. A good place to start: the long-delayed investment pact with EU

6 Jan 2020 - 6:00AM

With Trump distracted by elections and a partial trade deal on the cards, China can finally concentrate on drawing closer to Europe and dispelling any suspicions over incompatible values. A good place to start: the long-delayed investment pact with EU

Amid Trump discord, China must keep trying to deepen its friendship with Europe in 2020
Outside In | Hong Kong, preoccupied with its extradition crisis and trying to ‘be water’, overlooked the climate emergency

Hong Kong, grappling with protests for half of 2019, was somewhat out of tune with the global zeitgeist, which was focused on how to combat the threat of climate change.

3 Jan 2020 - 10:30PM

Hong Kong, grappling with protests for half of 2019, was somewhat out of tune with the global zeitgeist, which was focused on how to combat the threat of climate change.

Hong Kong, preoccupied with its extradition crisis and trying to ‘be water’, overlooked the climate emergency
Inside Out | Data sharing is key to unlocking US$1.4 trillion of economic value and saving lives. More collaboration, not paranoid decoupling, is needed

The value of ‘earth and marine observing’ technologies to Apec economies could rise to at least US$1.35 trillion. If we are to tap this potential and also improve life-saving technologies, there is no place for barriers to data sharing.

30 Dec 2019 - 3:14PM

The value of ‘earth and marine observing’ technologies to Apec economies could rise to at least US$1.35 trillion. If we are to tap this potential and also improve life-saving technologies, there is no place for barriers to data sharing.

Data sharing is key to unlocking US$1.4 trillion of economic value and saving lives. More collaboration, not paranoid decoupling, is needed
Outside In | What’s behind US paranoia about Chinese phones, drones and pills? Not ‘national security’ but pride

The Trump administration has been using a cold-war law as a trade weapon over the past three years, against countries from Canada to China. The Americans can’t seem to admit Chinese companies sell advanced products at competitive prices.

28 Dec 2019 - 5:17PM

The Trump administration has been using a cold-war law as a trade weapon over the past three years, against countries from Canada to China. The Americans can’t seem to admit Chinese companies sell advanced products at competitive prices.

What’s behind US paranoia about Chinese phones, drones and pills? Not ‘national security’ but pride
Inside Out | As Mahathir gets set to host his second Apec summit, will it be a defining moment for his legacy at home and abroad?

Just as in 1998, the world economy is not in great shape, a US president has been impeached and Mahathir is hosting an Apec summit. This time, he appears more convinced of the forum’s value and is set to take a hands-on approach in shaping its post-2020 vision.

22 Dec 2019 - 9:48PM

Just as in 1998, the world economy is not in great shape, a US president has been impeached and Mahathir is hosting an Apec summit. This time, he appears more convinced of the forum’s value and is set to take a hands-on approach in shaping its post-2020 vision.

As Mahathir gets set to host his second Apec summit, will it be a defining moment for his legacy at home and abroad?
Outside In | Is climate responsibility good for business? Signs show the corporate environment may be changing, but is it still just ‘greenwashing’?

Mounting pressure – including within the corporate world – suggests attitudes towards global warming are at a tipping point. But we must still be vigilant against firms ‘greenwashing’ for publicity rather than carrying out serious change.

20 Dec 2019 - 10:26PM

Mounting pressure – including within the corporate world – suggests attitudes towards global warming are at a tipping point. But we must still be vigilant against firms ‘greenwashing’ for publicity rather than carrying out serious change.

Is climate responsibility good for business? Signs show the corporate environment may be changing, but is it still just ‘greenwashing’?
Inside Out | Boris Johnson’s election victory in Brexit Britain shows the way for a gridlocked Hong Kong

The sweeping Conservative victory shows that democratic processes can break political gridlocks. Hongkongers, too, want an end to the uncertainty on the city’s autonomy come 2047 and the city desperately needs charismatic leaders to take up the conversation with Beijing.

15 Dec 2019 - 10:24PM

The sweeping Conservative victory shows that democratic processes can break political gridlocks. Hongkongers, too, want an end to the uncertainty on the city’s autonomy come 2047 and the city desperately needs charismatic leaders to take up the conversation with Beijing.

Boris Johnson’s election victory in Brexit Britain shows the way for a gridlocked Hong Kong
Outside In | Smartphones and WhatsApp leave the apostrophe in a sad state of decline – but at least it still has its protectors

Signs around the world still misuse the apostrophe and texters disregard it completely. But at least the Apostrophe Protection Society has recently reversed its decision to fold following a surge in interest.

14 Dec 2019 - 11:26AM

Signs around the world still misuse the apostrophe and texters disregard it completely. But at least the Apostrophe Protection Society has recently reversed its decision to fold following a surge in interest.

Smartphones and WhatsApp leave the apostrophe in a sad state of decline – but at least it still has its protectors
Inside Out | The US will regret breaking WTO’s dispute settlement mechanism

From December 11, the WTO’s Appellate Court will stop hearing disputes, forcing the growing number of countries subject to US tariff wars to take their own defensive actions. As disputes stack up over trade, climate change and tech taxes, one thing is for certain: the US will rue the day it broke the mechanism to settle disputes multilaterally.

9 Dec 2019 - 3:40AM

From December 11, the WTO’s Appellate Court will stop hearing disputes, forcing the growing number of countries subject to US tariff wars to take their own defensive actions. As disputes stack up over trade, climate change and tech taxes, one thing is for certain: the US will rue the day it broke the mechanism to settle disputes multilaterally.

The US will regret breaking WTO’s dispute settlement mechanism
Outside In | Despite Donald Trump’s attack on the international postal system, he might be in for a nasty surprise in the mail next year

The Trump administration forced the Universal Postal Union to allow the US to set its own international postal fees from July next year. However, this is likely to make only a small dent in the country’s mail woes.

7 Dec 2019 - 1:36AM

The Trump administration forced the Universal Postal Union to allow the US to set its own international postal fees from July next year. However, this is likely to make only a small dent in the country’s mail woes.

Despite Donald Trump’s attack on the international postal system, he might be in for a nasty surprise in the mail next year
Inside Out | Carrie Lam must use the window of calm to start repairing the damage she has done to Hong Kong

Protesters have lost the campus battle but not the war, and the district elections watershed confirms that young, pro-democracy voters will only grow in power. Lam must use this window of calm to reflect wisely and act quickly.

1 Dec 2019 - 10:25PM

Protesters have lost the campus battle but not the war, and the district elections watershed confirms that young, pro-democracy voters will only grow in power. Lam must use this window of calm to reflect wisely and act quickly.

Carrie Lam must use the window of calm to start repairing the damage she has done to Hong Kong
Outside In | Tofurkey for Thanksgiving and mock roast suckling pig? How the world can eat less meat

Given global warming and the emergence of pseudo meats, more of us should be replacing the Thanksgiving turkey with meatless alternatives. Meanwhile, China’s meat prices have surged on its pork crisis: a chance for pseudo-meat makers to enter the world’s biggest meat-eating market.

30 Nov 2019 - 1:33AM

Given global warming and the emergence of pseudo meats, more of us should be replacing the Thanksgiving turkey with meatless alternatives. Meanwhile, China’s meat prices have surged on its pork crisis: a chance for pseudo-meat makers to enter the world’s biggest meat-eating market.

Tofurkey for Thanksgiving and mock roast suckling pig? How the world can eat less meat
Inside Out | China isn’t gaming global trade through its industrial polices or ‘unique’ economic model – the problem is out-of-date WTO rules

There’s a myth that says China got a pass into the WTO, and has used state-owned enterprises to break the rules ever since. But those rules were written before the digital age, and perhaps the state role in the market needs to be reconsidered.

25 Nov 2019 - 3:04AM

There’s a myth that says China got a pass into the WTO, and has used state-owned enterprises to break the rules ever since. But those rules were written before the digital age, and perhaps the state role in the market needs to be reconsidered.

China isn’t gaming global trade through its industrial polices or ‘unique’ economic model – the problem is out-of-date WTO rules
Outside In | Hong Kong’s protesters should reserve some fury for bigger problems: the climate crisis and our mountain of waste

Dozens of countries have set the goal of ‘net zero carbon’ by 2050, though how they will achieve this is far from clear. They are ahead of Hong Kong, though, which has yet to turn its attention to a task that will require changes from all of us.

22 Nov 2019 - 10:52PM

Dozens of countries have set the goal of ‘net zero carbon’ by 2050, though how they will achieve this is far from clear. They are ahead of Hong Kong, though, which has yet to turn its attention to a task that will require changes from all of us.

Hong Kong’s protesters should reserve some fury for bigger problems: the climate crisis and our mountain of waste
Inside Out | US exceptionalism thrives, but not all in Washington see US-China rivalry as a tussle between good and evil

Blame US exceptionalism for the seemingly widespread view of some US experts and Trump advisers that China threatens American values and freedoms – a threat the US needs to eradicate for good. Such a “Washington consensus” is far from the truth.

18 Nov 2019 - 6:22AM

Blame US exceptionalism for the seemingly widespread view of some US experts and Trump advisers that China threatens American values and freedoms – a threat the US needs to eradicate for good. Such a “Washington consensus” is far from the truth.

US exceptionalism thrives, but not all in Washington see US-China rivalry  as a tussle between good and evil
Outside In | Singles’ Day sales are no cause for optimism – when Chinese consumerism wakes, it may trash the world

The good news is that China’s Singles’ Day numbers show it is boosting domestic demand, becoming less reliant on exports. The bad news? If China, and India, replicate the West’s consumption and waste habits, we’ll have an environmental crisis.

16 Nov 2019 - 8:05AM

The good news is that China’s Singles’ Day numbers show it is boosting domestic demand, becoming less reliant on exports. The bad news? If China, and India, replicate the West’s consumption and waste habits, we’ll have an environmental crisis.

Singles’ Day sales are no cause for optimism – when Chinese consumerism wakes, it may trash the world
Inside Out | The world economy is headed for a recession. China won’t be there to save it this time

China’s economic health is important to the world not just because of its importance as a buyer and supplier, but also because of anxieties that it is less well placed to provide the massive stimulus it did after the 2008 financial crash.

11 Nov 2019 - 10:47AM

China’s economic health is important to the world not just because of its importance as a buyer and supplier, but also because of anxieties that it is less well placed to provide the massive stimulus it did after the 2008 financial crash.

The world economy is headed for a recession. China won’t be there to save it this time
Outside In | What Brexit supporters can learn from India pulling out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership

RCEP is an important assurance that countries remain committed to multi-country liberalisation. India’s withdrawal from the pact leave the other 15 members in a quandary and highlights the difficulty of concluding trade deals.

8 Nov 2019 - 10:21PM

RCEP is an important assurance that countries remain committed to multi-country liberalisation. India’s withdrawal from the pact leave the other 15 members in a quandary and highlights the difficulty of concluding trade deals.

What Brexit supporters can learn from India pulling out of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership
Inside Out | Can Carrie Lam keep her deathbed promise to David Akers-Jones by helping Hong Kong’s poor and building more housing?

A Business Professionals Federation report suggests reforms to Hong Kong’s minimum wage, MPF, tax system and housing policy. Taking on these suggestions would help Chief Executive Carrie Lam keep her promise to David Akers-Jones.

4 Nov 2019 - 9:17AM

A Business Professionals Federation report suggests reforms to Hong Kong’s minimum wage, MPF, tax system and housing policy. Taking on these suggestions would help Chief Executive Carrie Lam keep her promise to David Akers-Jones.

Can Carrie Lam keep her deathbed promise to David Akers-Jones by helping Hong Kong’s poor and building more housing?
Outside In | Why the ‘Disunited Kingdom’ will remain trapped in the Brexit Groundhog Day cycle of destructive drama

At the fourth attempt, a date has been set for an election which will essentially be a Brexit referendum. Although Boris Johnson and his kamikaze Brexiters expect to win, a hung parliament and more uncertainty are more likely outcomes.

1 Nov 2019 - 10:44PM

At the fourth attempt, a date has been set for an election which will essentially be a Brexit referendum. Although Boris Johnson and his kamikaze Brexiters expect to win, a hung parliament and more uncertainty are more likely outcomes.

Why the ‘Disunited Kingdom’ will remain trapped in the Brexit Groundhog Day cycle of destructive drama
Inside Out | Promote women’s equality in the workplace – it’s long overdue, and it would boost the economy for everyone

Frustratingly outdated attitudes, including in East Asia, still keep women from reaching their potential in workplaces and governments. Numbers show that if we can bridge the gender divide worldwide, the boost to GDP would be substantial.

27 Oct 2019 - 8:47PM

Frustratingly outdated attitudes, including in East Asia, still keep women from reaching their potential in workplaces and governments. Numbers show that if we can bridge the gender divide worldwide, the boost to GDP would be substantial.

Promote women’s equality in the workplace – it’s long overdue, and it would boost the economy for everyone
Outside In | Is Hong Kong willing to make the drastic lifestyle changes necessary to head off the climate crisis? The signs aren’t good

Drastic behavioural shifts are urgently needed, with households worldwide responsible for three-quarters of carbon emissions. In Hong Kong, as elsewhere, the challenge is to fly less, eat less meat and improve energy and transport efficiency.

25 Oct 2019 - 10:34PM

Drastic behavioural shifts are urgently needed, with households worldwide responsible for three-quarters of carbon emissions. In Hong Kong, as elsewhere, the challenge is to fly less, eat less meat and improve energy and transport efficiency.

Is Hong Kong willing to make the drastic lifestyle changes necessary to head off the climate crisis? The signs aren’t good
Inside Out | What Hong Kong’s crisis and Britain’s Brexit woes have in common

In both cases, deep societal rifts and a political misstep combined to wreak political civil war and economic harm, leaving deep, perhaps permanent scars. Brexit’s lesson for Hong Kong? It is hard to stuff the genie back in the bottle.

21 Oct 2019 - 7:24AM

In both cases, deep societal rifts and a political misstep combined to wreak political civil war and economic harm, leaving deep, perhaps permanent scars. Brexit’s lesson for Hong Kong? It is hard to stuff the genie back in the bottle.

What Hong Kong’s crisis and Britain’s Brexit woes have in common
Outside In | Hong Kong’s economy is reeling from the one-two blow of local protests and US-China trade conflict, but it will survive

The impact of the unrest has been quick and devastating, but the city has lived through worse crises. While longer-term damage from the trade war is more of a worry, Hong Kong is not alone in this.

19 Oct 2019 - 10:30AM

The impact of the unrest has been quick and devastating, but the city has lived through worse crises. While longer-term damage from the trade war is more of a worry, Hong Kong is not alone in this.

Hong Kong’s economy is reeling from the one-two blow of local protests and US-China trade conflict, but it will survive
Inside Out | How China can help rescue the WTO, at a critical time for global trade

The World Trade Organisation is floundering. Its trade dispute settlement system is falling apart, and it can’t seem to seal a minor deal on global fishing subsidies. This is the hour for China to honour its commitment to multilateralism.

13 Oct 2019 - 11:10PM

The World Trade Organisation is floundering. Its trade dispute settlement system is falling apart, and it can’t seem to seal a minor deal on global fishing subsidies. This is the hour for China to honour its commitment to multilateralism.

How China can help rescue the WTO, at a critical time for global trade
Outside In | Asia-Pacific needs the WTO to stay relevant in an increasingly uncertain world

Bilateral negotiations never favour smaller economies and losing the WTO’s multilateral dispute settlement channel would be a major loss for the Asia-Pacific. We simply cannot afford to take the WTO for granted, weakened as it is and in sore need of reforms.

12 Oct 2019 - 4:26AM

Bilateral negotiations never favour smaller economies and losing the WTO’s multilateral dispute settlement channel would be a major loss for the Asia-Pacific. We simply cannot afford to take the WTO for granted, weakened as it is and in sore need of reforms.

Asia-Pacific needs the WTO to stay relevant in an increasingly uncertain world