China is prepared to do anything it can to stave off the current financial crisis. They will even cooperate with Japan. Yes, you know it’s serious when the middle kingdom and its island neighbor agree to work together, but that’s just what they did over the weekend, along with South Korea, at a meeting in Fukuoka, Japan. The three Asian giants will refrain from imposing export restrictions and from creating new barriers to investment and trade. In a bid to boost consumer spending and bolster the economy China has also announced that it will increase the money supply by 17% in 2009. Money supply growth has slipped a bit due to slowing business activity and bank lending, and China is hoping to increase the available credit to consumers and companies next year. 2009 will also mark the year that China finally enters the 3G era (cue triumphant music now). Li Yizhong, the minister for industry and information technology, announced on Friday that 3G licenses would be issued to Chinese operators at the beginning next year. You, dear reader, will be forgiven for thinking that 2008 was going to be the year China issued 3G licenses. Or 2007 and 2006 for that matter. There’s been a slight delay. Check out why in our April cover story on the telecom industry. No surprises on which companies will receive which licenses, in fact the real surprise will be if these licenses get issued without yet another delay.