Over the past 35 years of the reform period Beijing has tried to make its state-owned enterprises more efficient and competitive. In the early 1990s it adopted a strategy modeled closely on the Western corporation and the equity and debt capital markets that support its operations. But China's big SOEs have demonstrated more and more independence despite outright economic and ownership control by the government and the Communist Party. And this independence has not led to greater efficiencies or, arguably, even competitiveness. Instead the National Champions represent monopolistic economic and political power. Today China's new leadership confronts the National Champions seeking to regain control over the state's principal assets. How did this happen and what can be done to reassert Beijing's rights?
Carl E. Walter worked in China and its financial sector for over 20 years and actively participated in many of the country’s financial reform efforts. While at Credit Suisse First Boston he played a major role in China’s groundbreaking first overseas IPO in 1992. Later at Morgan Stanley he was a member of senior management at China International Capital Corporation, China’s first and most successful investment bank. While there he supported a number of groundbreaking domestic and international stock and bond underwritings for major Chinese corporations. More recently at JPMorgan he was China Chief Operating Officer and Chief Executive Officer of its China banking subsidiary. During this time Carl helped build a pioneering domestic security, risk and currency trading operation. In his spare time he enjoyed driving his Jeep to distant provinces.
A long time resident of Beijing before his recent return to the United States, Carl is fluent in Mandarin and holds a PhD from Stanford University and a graduate certificate from Peking University. In Spring 2013, Carl returned to Stanford as a visiting scholar at the Shorenstein-Asia Pacific Research Center, FSI. He is the co-author of Red Capitalism: the fragile financial foundations of China’s extraordinary rise, which has been published in Chinese in China. His earlier book, Privatizing China: inside China’s stock markets, was also published in China and, like Red Capitalism, contributed to the government’s policy debate.
This event is co-sponsored with CEAS and is part of the China under Xi Jinping series.