This week the UWJ team attended Platinum Asset Management’s annual adviser luncheon. Whilst legendary founder and CEO Kerr Neilson stepped down from the top job last month, he still has considerable input on the company’s vision and framework. Nielson hands the reins over Andrew Clifford, Platinum’s chief investment officer, who will succeed Mr Neilson from July 1 this year. It’s all about China Embed from Getty Imageswindow.gie=window.gie||function(c){(gie.q=gie.q||[]).push(c)};gie(function(){gie.widgets.load({id:’7ijGKHWoQ4R_fjqc1sRWXA’,sig:’zBXkxggsIqwoI676fTjLnWRks62Yc_XLadWIUURoK2E=’,w:’509px’,h:’339px’,items:’829105476′,caption: true ,tld:’’,is360: false })}); Platinum’s luncheon was a packed house held at Melbourne’s Sofitel Hotel. What was striking was that the entire presentation was all on China. The first speaker was portfolio manager Dr Joseph Lai. Think back a couple of years ago. Remember that 60 minutes report on China’s Ghost cities back in 2013? Here’s the link if you missed it. To recap, China built massive cities. Brand new skyscrapers, apartment blocks, roads, bridges and shops. Everything needed for a modern, urban lifestyle. Everything except one major thing. People. These cities were empty. Almost like ghost cities. Everyone thought China was crazy and labelled it a huge housing bubble. Fast forward to today and Ordos Kangbashi, China’s largest ghost city, is now full. It’s a thriving metropolis that is occupied by more than two million people. It’s a remarkable achievement that no one imagined possible. Lai says more than 20 million people have now moved into these ghost cities as the middle class migrate from farms and villages into these urban cities. In doing so, they’re actively buying up land and property. In-fact some cities have introduced a lottery system for the sale of new houses as demand is overtaking supply. The lottery guarantees transparent and fair distribution of homes. These ghost cities made headlines for nearly a decade with many sitting empty for years. Economists and analysts saw this as a sign that they country was almost certainly headed for a massive property crash. They were wrong. This was merely China’s style of urban expansion required for a giant population and giant economy. Embed from Getty Imageswindow.gie=window.gie||function(c){(gie.q=gie.q||[]).push(c)};gie(function(){gie.widgets.load({id:’uHbluSyDTkdyqJc44JWJ1Q’,sig:’IjO-iPaKJbfTaFh1dAZlMLXmaZHrKpBGQdm0vnD1ppg=’,w:’594px’,h:’396px’,items:’857755096′,caption: true ,tld:’’,is360: false })}); It doesn’t stop there though, China’s good fortunes are spreading throughout the economy. The country is no longer just a manufacturing economy. It’s a country teeming with entrepreneurs and innovators who are driving a tech revolution. Over the past 20 years, Shenzhen has been transformed into a booming Silicon Valley. The country is adopting tech on a massive scale. And if you think about it, it makes sense. For a start, China is massive. Lai says the country produces 4 million technological engineers every year. The talent pool is huge. Which means its ability to produce new tech companies and disrupt is more than anywhere else in the world. Here’s an interesting fact: 15 Chinese startups had reached unicorn status last year. Effectively 30% of the world’s billion-dollar companies were created in China in 2017. What we are witnessing is a tech revolution and it’s only just starting. China is re-shaping itself as a tech innovator and its long-term strategy is to lead the world in technologies such as machine learning, blockchain, EV and energy. To highlight this even further the Platinum team used mobile payments as an example. They visited a small town called Chengda. What they found was that a movie theatre did not accept cash, it  only accepted payments via smartphone. Alipay (Ali Baba) and WeChat (Tencent) Pay rank as the top payment options. Mobile payments have made…

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