Chinese President Xi Jinping arrived in Dhaka to a red carpet welcome on Friday amid expectations of a record US$25 billion in loan agreements being signed between the two countries. Most of the deals will support major infrastructure projects in Bangladesh which have been languishing for nearly a decade due to lack of funds.

Rising prices across Chinese factory floors and shopping centers indicate Beijing’s strenuous supply-side reform is finally gaining traction after nearly a year in the works. Outperforming CPI and PPI figures both help to ease concerns about the health of the world’s second-largest economy following weak export data. The end of industrial deflation is also likely to boost overall manufacturing profitability.

Thailand’s heir apparent Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn has asked for an unexpected delay before being officially proclaimed the next monarch following the death of his father King Bhumibol Adulyadej on Thursday.

As we report in our round-up of Chinese language media, tougher rules on online lending will be introduced by the end of March in line with plans issued by the State Council on October 13. Online lending networks are already banned from setting up capital pools and some forms of loans, while equity crowdfunding platforms have been blocked from selling debt masquerading as equities.

Kenny Hodgart

Kenny Hodgart is an editor for Asia Times.