Home>Top Issues

Thriving sharing economy faces uncertainties

Wednesday,Aug 23, 2017

From: ECNS

 

The photo taken on July 14, 2017 shows a shared compartment in Shanghai, east China. (Xinhua/Du Xiaoyi)


 

Bicycles, umbrellas, chargers and even the gym... more and more daily necessities are being introduced to the Chinese market for sharing. In early July, a nap capsule popped up in office buildings in Beijing, Shanghai and Chengdu and soon gained a following of committed nappers.

However, the latest sharing innovation disappeared from the market just several weeks after its launch, triggering wide speculation that the capsules were dismantled by police for violating certain regulations.

Dai Jiangong, founder of the shared sleeping product, told CGTN that they proactively recalled the nap capsules for upgrading, as they found safety risks during the trial operation.

Each white-colored capsule is about two meters long. They include disposable bedding, USB interfaces and a ventilator, among other features. Users can enjoy a siesta for half an hour for 10 yuan (1.5 U.S. dollars).

Interviews with office workers in Beijing found many to be interested in the new invention, expressing that a brief break after lunch refreshes them before hunkering down for work in the afternoon. Some, however, were concerned about the hygienic and safety problems.

Dai admitted that the safety risk was a major reason for the sudden recall, as there were no fire warnings and firefighting equipment in the capsules.

The business model also remains controversial. Regulators hold that the capsules should be operated under the same regulations as hotels, calling for multiple requirements.

Despite the challenges, Dai said he would not give up on the product. "Our team is working hard to have it rectified as the regulators have suggested. I am still confident with the product and the service we are trying to provide."

The nap capsule’s setbacks have prompted heated discussions on China’s booming sharing economy business model. Some experts say the concept has been misused.

He Weiwen, senior researcher at the Center for China and Globalization(CCG), told CGTN that he thinks the government and media have the obligation to guide the development of the sharing economy.

"It should be driven by social needs not by capital, but now many companies of time-sharing services are just chasing for capitals, just chasing for profits. That’s not a correct way," He said.

A joint report released by the National Information Center and the Internet Society of China says the revenue from China’s sharing economy market was 3,452 billion yuan (517.5 billion US dollars) in 2016, up by 103 percent from the previous year. According to the report, it’s expected increase 40 percent in the coming years.

"The enterprises should not try to obtain financing and carry out promotion in the name of sharing economy. The disorderly expansion will only lead to the fall of the industry," He warned.

 

From ECNS,2017-8-21

 

  • The world’s new academic bazaar

    Education can be effective channel to bring China, India closer From: The Hindu   Lakes in some of the famous university campuses in Beijing — Peking and Tsinghua among them — have frozen as sub-zero temperatures are now routine in…

  • 【China Daily】International plan draws foreign students

    When Thai student Patcharamai Sawanaporn finished college last year, she wanted a change of scenery that could help her grow into a more confident person and to experience a culture she had little contact with. The 25-year-old was enrolled in…

  • [newsfirst] China and US battles in Trade War

    REUTERS – The fact that United States President Donald Trump points to America’s trade deficit with China as one reason to tax Chinese goods cannot justify a trade war with data calculated in outdated methods, said Wang Huiyao, president of the Center for China and Globalization (CCG).

  • Is Trump serious about trade war with China?

    “This [appointment] is not a good sign, not a positive sign,” says Xie Tao, a senior research fellow at Center for China and Globalization (CCG), a think tank in Beijing, and Professor at the Foreign Studies University in Beijing. “There was a kind of euphoria over Donald Trump’s victory in China, and many Chinese were writing about how having him in the White House would be good for US-China relations. But in the last few weeks we’ve had a sudden turnaround, an about-face.”

  • Trump Forms Trade Council Led by China Critic Peter Navarro

    Peter Navarro, a University of California at Irvine economics professor and a frequent critic of China’s trade practices, will lead a newly formed White House National Trade Council as an assistant to U.S. President-elect Donald Trump.