I am back in Beijing with a working VPN and some jet-lagged kids. Normal publication should return on January 4 when the official Chinese holiday ends. There are more links than normal today as there has been a fair bit of news over the last few days and I am playing catchup.
BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
China’s Stocks Rise on Manufacturing Data, Posting Annual Gain – Bloomberg - The Shanghai Composite climbed 3.2 percent in 2012, its first annual advance since 2009. The gauge rebounded 16 percent since reaching an almost four-year low on Dec. 3 amid optimism China’s economic growth will recover. The CSI 300 advanced 7.6 percent this year while Hong Kong Hang Seng China Enterprises Index added 15 percent.
China official factory PMI points to steady growth revival | Reuters - China’s official manufacturing purchasing managers’ index held steady in December at 50.6, matching November’s seven-month high, as growth in new orders was unchanged and the pace of output softened marginally. With the main index above 50 for three straight months, the survey indicates that China’s vast factory sector is expanding. The official PMI was released a day after a similar survey by HSBC suggested manufacturing activity at its strongest since May 2011.
Chinese Regulator’s Family Profited From Stake in Insurer – NYTimes.com - #3 from David Barboza on the Ping’an Piggy Bank// The regulator, Dai Xianglong, was the head of China’s central bank and also had oversight of the insurance industry in 2002, when a company his relatives helped control bought a big stake in Ping An Insurance that years later came to be worth billions of dollars. The insurer was drawing new investors ahead of a public stock offering after averting insolvency a few years earlier.
China to further check local government financing – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Local governments are raising funds illegally despite various measures to put a cap on their debts, an official statement said on Monday.Offences include building public projects through illegal build-transfer (BT) contracts, cash top-ups or guaranteeing financial vehicles illegally and raising money against the law through financial corporations, loan and trust companies and finance leasing firms.The statement was issued by the Ministry of Finance, the National Development and Reform Commission, the People’s Bank of China and the China Banking Regulatory Commission.
China’s Reform Credibility Problem – Caixin - Verbal commitments to progress should be backed up with concrete actions, and changes to state-owned enterprises are a good place to start//Speech By Barry Naughton at December Caixin summit
Why Are Entrepreneurs So Uneasy? - Caixin- Selective law enforcement is the issue most complained about, and it is a major source of unease–By Liu Chuanzhi, Legend Founder
Liu Han, the Chinese Mogul of Eureka, Nevada – WSJ.com - EUREKA, Nev.—Silver prospectors, gamblers and adventurers founded this mining town in 1864, but Eureka has never seen a fortune-hunter quite like Liu Han.Mr. Liu, a little-known Chinese business mogul, is the primary financier for a $1.3 billion plan to blast the top off a hill called Mount Hope just north of Eureka to remove its lode of metal called molybdenum. Mount Hope, adjacent to the old Pony Express Trail in central Nevada, holds one of the world’s biggest undeveloped deposits of the silvery element moly, used to harden steel for advanced applications such as piping for nuclear-power plants.
Who is my auditor? | China Accounting Blog | Paul Gillis- I cannot fathom how the auditors plan to explain to the audit committee that they are the principal auditors if most of the audit is actually done by the mainland affiliate. It is the mainland affiliate that is the principal auditor and shareholders deserve to know that fact.The rules do not go into effect until years beginning after December 15, 2012, so the firms have another year to come up with a story. Audit committees should not let them off the hook. Audit committees should demand that the firms explain who is the principal auditor now and not wait until next year
POLITICS AND LAW
人民日报-以更大的政治勇气和智慧深化改革 朝着十八大指引的改革开放方向前进 -People’s Daily Page 1 Jan 2, on Xi’s calling for greater wisdom and courage in deepening reform at Politburo study meeting..lots of “crossing the river by feeling the stones”..// 摸着石头过河，是富有中国特色、符合中国国情的改革方法。摸着石头过河就是摸规律，从实践中获得真知。摸着石头过河和加强顶层设计是辩证统一的，推进局部的阶段性改革开放要在加强顶层设计的前提下进行，加强顶层设计要在推进局部的阶段性改革开放的基础上来谋划改革发展稳定任务越繁重，我们越要加强和改善党的领导，越要保持党同人民群众的血肉联系改革开放只有进行时没有完成时。没有改革开放，就没有中国的今天，也就没有中国的明天
Xi Jinping calls for more wisdom, courage to deepen reform – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Xi Jinping made the comments when presiding over a group study held by the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau on Monday, when bureau members were given a lecture on promoting China’s reform….Xi said that five principles should be adhered to based on more than 30 years of experience of the policy. Firstly, opening up and reform must be implemented along the path of socialism with Chinese characteristics. Secondly, opening up and reform must be conducted with correct methods in line with China’s national conditions and should be improved with further practice. Thirdly, opening up and reform is like a systematic project which should be conducted in a coordinated way and needs supporting measures. Fourthly, opening up and reform must be conducted based on a premise of stability, and finally, the policy should be conducted under the leadership of the CPC and respect grassroots innovation. The Party should actively respond to the people’s outcries and expectations for deepening reform, build social consensus on reform policies and promote various reform measures in all aspects, Xi added.
全面贯彻落实党的十八大精神要突出抓好六个方面工作_2013/01_求是理论网 - Xi Jinping’s essay in jan 1 issue of “seeking truth”, an excerpt of his speech at the first plenum of the 18th Party Congress（这是习近平同志在党的十八届一中全会上讲话的一部分。）
习近平引诗词“东方欲晓，风景这边独好”_网易新闻中心 - Xi Jinping cites a 1934 Mao Zedong poem in his speech to committee of CPPCC on January 1. Second reference to Mao by Xi in a few days. Last week Xi referred to a famous conversation between Chairman Mao Zedong and Huang Yanpei. Mao and Huang exchanged opinions on the rise and decline of dynasties in 1945//《清平乐·会昌》作于1934年夏，全文为：“东方欲晓，莫道君行早。踏遍青山人未老，风景这边独好。会昌城外高峰，颠连直接东溟。战士指看南粤，更加郁郁葱葱。”1934年7月，毛泽东登上会昌山极目远眺，顿生感慨，创作了这首词。
HUICHANG - translation of the mao zedong poem xi cited in his new year’s speech to cppcc group 《清平乐·会昌》作于1934年夏，全文为：“东方欲晓，莫道君行早。踏遍青山人未老，风景这边独好。会昌城外高峰，颠连直接东溟。战士指看南粤，更加郁郁葱葱。”1934年7月，毛泽东登上会昌山极目远眺，顿生感慨，创作了这首词。
Xi Jinping wants a ‘stable and solid’ start in his first year in charge | South China Morning Post- Sending new year greetings for the first time as party leader, Xi, 59, also pledged to maintain the long-term prosperity and stability of Hong Kong and Macau.The president-in-waiting, the son of a communist revolutionary general who was a comrade of Mao Zedong , quoted from a poem by Mao praising progress over recent decades in what appeared to be an attempt to please his predecessors and party conservatives.
习近平在全国政协新年茶话会上的讲话(全文)_新闻_腾讯网 - 这里，我想起毛泽东同志当年写下的词句：“东方欲晓，莫道君行早。踏遍青山人未老，风景这边独好。”辉煌成就已载入民族史册，美好未来正召唤着我们去开拓创造。让我们更加紧密地团结起来，朝着全面建成小康社会、加快实现社会主义现代化的宏伟目标奋勇前进！
CPC outlines anti-corruption plan for new year |Politics |chinadaily.com.cn- BEIJING – The Communist Party of China (CPC) will make more efforts to wean its members away from extravagance, bureaucratic behaviors and abuse of power as part of an anti-graft drive in the new year.The move is part of the 2013 anti-graft plan as outlined in a report delivered by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) in a meeting on Monday.The meeting, held by the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, was presided over by Xi Jinping, general secretary of CPC Central Committee
David Ignatius: Wang Qishan, China’s new hatchet man – The Washington Post - Wang’s role as party disciplinarian was highlighted for me by Randal Phillips, a former CIA official in Beijing who now heads the China office of the Mintz Group, a New York-based consulting firm that helps western and Chinese businesses with investigative tasks. Phillips says that he advises U.S. companies in China to make clear from the outset that they won’t pay bribes, and to hedge their bets in picking Chinese partners and patrons, given the political jockeying that’s taking place.//Randal Phillips| James Mintz Group- Randal Phillips is a Managing Director and manages the Mintz Group’s Beijing office as well as activities across Asia.Randy spent 28 years with the Central Intelligence Agency’s National Clandestine Service, most recently serving as the Chief CIA representative in China. He has an extensive background in foreign field operations, policy and program management, and leadership development. He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and Bahasa Indonesian.
习近平主持反腐会议 怒斥个别高官严重违纪违法_多维新闻网 - 【多维新闻】中共新任总书记习近平12月31日主持了政治局研究部署2013年党风廉政建设和反腐败工作会议，听取中央纪律检查委员会工作汇报，而这也是公开新闻报道中习近平第一次主持反腐工作。会议明确强调，“个别领导干部特别是高级干部严重违纪违法”，要“着力严明党的纪律特别是政治纪律”，“维护党的集中统一”。习近平上任后，官场迅速刮起了一股声势浩大的“反腐风暴”，其中不乏高官落马。习近平此番主持会议，更加引发了广泛关注。
Villagers recall Xi’s poverty-themed visit – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Recalling Xi’s questions about her family’s farmland, food supply and livestock, Tang was astonished at the General Secretary’s affability when they chatted to each other.Xi brought cooking oil, flour, quilts and coats to families in the village during his visit.According to Li Ningtai, secretary of the CPC Fuping County Committee, Xi stayed in a 16-square meter hotel room during the visit and followed the rule that every meal only consist of four household dishes and one bowl of soup.
Xi Eats Plainly As China Focuses on Official Waistlines – China Real Time Report – WSJ- Brace yourselves, comrades. It’s going to be a meager new year.That was the underlying message from Communist Party chief Xi Jinping over the weekend, as he continued a populist campaign aimed at shoring up support in rural areas and among the country’s poor.“Four dishes, one soup,” was the newest catchphrase out of state media describing a simple dinner Mr. Xi attended over the weekend in Fuping county, in the northern province of Hebei.
Wang Yang is no reformist leader | South China Morning Post - another reminder that there was much naive commentary about Wukan..some who should know better may be “seeking hope from wishful thinking” and looking for “China’s Gorbachev”// Chang Ping says the muzzling of the Guangdong media in the five years under Wang Yang’s rule thoroughly undermines his image as a trailblazing reformist leader
China academics warn of “violent revolution” if no political reform – Yahoo! News - BEIJING (Reuters) – A prominent group of Chinese academics has warned in a bold open letter that the country risks “violent revolution” if the government does not respond to public pressure and allow long-stalled political reforms. The 73 scholars, including well-known current and retired legal experts at top universities and lawyers, said political reform had not matched the quick pace of economic expansion.
郑州“房妹”之父曾被举报倒卖308套安置房|房妹|房管局长|经适房_新浪新闻 -zhengzhou corrupt official case getting bigger
Odd leader out: Zhang Gaoli keeps family out of Xinhua leadership profile｜WantChinaTimes.com - The curious omission has sparked the interest of political commentators and foreign media, who have questioned whether the 66-year-old Zhang had specifically requested details of his family be kept private. Hong Kong media have reported that Zhang’s wife is surnamed Kang and that they have one son, born in 1989 when Zhang would have been around 43. The couple is also rumored to have adopted the daughter of a cousin on Zhang’s father’s side named Zhang Xiaoyan, who is allegedly married to Lee Shing-put, a Hong Kong businessman and the son of Xinyi Glass founder Lee Yin-yee, one of the richest men in Hong Kong.
征地补偿制度修法延期 温家宝曾称年内出台_网易新闻中心 -change to compensation system for land reclamation that was promised by Wen Jiabao before end of 2012 delayed…// 核心提示：日前闭幕的人大常委会会议没有表决土地管理法修正案草案，这意味着征地补偿修法进程将延续到下一次审议。人大法工委副主任阚珂指出，目前关于征地补偿标准仍存不同意见。温家宝在今年两会上曾提出，制定出台农村集体土地征收补偿条例是2012年主要工作任务之一
Speculation over Xi Jinping’s weibo account | South China Morning Post - A new microblog account (学习粉丝团的微博) dedicated to Xi Jinping is attracting thousands of influential followers amid speculation that it might be run by someone close to the country’s top leader, if not the man himself. Since its debut late last month, the Sina Weibo account “Fans Group to Learn From Xi” has demonstrated an unusual level of access to the recently installed Communist Party chief, posting family photos and sensitive details about his travels.
State firms paid half the bribes rail executive Luo Jinbao received | South China Morning Post - About half of the bribes taken by a former top railways executive came from other state-owned railway companies, prosecutors have said, painting a damning portrait of rampant corruption in the sector. During the trial of former China Railway Container Transport chairman Luo Jinbao in Heilongjiang last week, it was revealed that several state railway companies showered Luo with cash, cars and luxury goods to win bids and escape punishment for construction code violations, mainland media reported. Payments from companies amounted to half of the 47 million yuan (HK$57.7 million) in bribes Luo is accused of accepting between 2005 and 2010.
公安局长微博曝妻子是父亲情妇 自己女儿是亲妹_新浪福建城事_新浪福建- police chief in liaoning goes online to accuse his father of keeping his wife as his mistress, DNA tests reveal police chief’s daughter is actually his sister…if this happened in the US there would be a reality show// 12月24日，一个新浪微博注册名为“本溪水洞公安局局长张雷”的博主发微博说揭发自己父亲的和妻子的禽兽行为，张雷称自己是辽宁本溪水洞公安局局长张雷，他的法官妻子是他父亲的情妇，自己受父母之命与妻子结婚，经DNA鉴定，婚后妻子所生女儿是他的胞妹。这条未经证实的微博，在网上引起轩然大波，包括新华网在内的国内多家网站在新闻频道转载此内容。
Millionaire businessman-blogger running for his life missing | South China Morning Post- A Shanxi millionaire who become a hit on the Sina Weibo blogging service with his story of being robbed of his successful business by local authorities has gone missing, according to a report in a Beijing newspaper.“I used to be an enterpreneur worth hundreds of millions yuan, but now I am a homeless man running for my life,” read one of 60-year-old Wei Xianfa’s Weibo posts. “I didn’t lose my money to gambling or mismanagement – I was robbed.”
李小鹏:愤慨央企瞒报事故 感谢网友举报_网易新闻中心 - sounds like coverup of massive accident at a railway tunnel under construction in shanxi was exposed online. Acting Shanxi governer li xiaopeng thanks netizens for exposing the coverup, says very angry at the central SOE responsible// 新华视点【李小鹏：悲痛、愤慨、震惊、自责】1日山西省代省长李小鹏在中南铁路通道南吕梁山隧道事故现场说，他对这起8死5伤的责任事故感到十分悲痛，对严重瞒报事故的情况感到十分愤慨，对管理良好的中央企业发生事故瞒报感到震惊，对各级政府、相关部门这么长时间竟然没有察觉感到自责。
传王立军继任者何挺成“新表叔” 或得网络新规“保护”_多维新闻网 - He Ting, Wang Lijun’s successor in Chongqing, also have a luxury wtch problem, but discussion of it censored? so says Duowei//【多维新闻】十八大前后，中国政治舞台“好戏”连连。薄熙来、王立军的重庆事件余波未平，反腐大幕高潮不断，网络管控新规适时出台。近日，有中国网友及多家海外媒体爆料称，重庆原公安局长王立军的继任者何挺，在不同场合佩戴各种名表，总价值高达几十万。网友称其为“新一代表叔”，或“新表叔”。目前，“何挺”、“表叔”等词已被百度、新浪微博等各大网络服务提供者屏蔽。此一事件，将重庆、反腐、网络舆论三件近期极为敏感的政治事件搅在了一起，成为中共的烫手山芋，在海内外各界引起热议。
明鏡新聞網: 陳良宇江澤民合照罕登官網 - dated picturess of jiang zemin in some official media show chen liangyu. isn’t chen liangyu already out on medical parole? jiang zemin going to do more for him?//【明報專訊】兩大官方網站新華網、人民網前日發布江澤民、李鵬與朱鎔基的退休生活圖輯，其中人民網刊登了已落馬的上海前市委書記陳良宇陪同江澤民視察的照片，這一罕見做法引起外界猜疑。
人民日报-改进工作作风 密切联系群众 各地出台细则 落实八项规定（新年新气象） - local governments have published the details of how they will adhere to xi’s new 8 regulations about work style
Bribers ordered to give back undue benefits – Xinhua | English.news.cn- The interpretation said any bribe amounting to at least 10,000 yuan (1,590 U.S. dollars) to state officials in exchange for illegitimate benefits will be regarded as a violation, subject to criminal punishment. Harsher punishment should be handed down if the sum exceeds 200,000 yuan, where suspects have bribed more than three officials, or where they have bribed officials in charge of food and drug safety, workplace safety or environmental protection and endangered the public and their property. These cases are regarded as “serious”, the interpretation said. Harsher punishment should also be imposed on those guilty of bribing law enforcers and judiciary staff in order to obstruct justice, it said.
The Great Balancing Act - Caixin- Future progress on China’s reform path is dependent on managing several important relationships, including that of stability and democracy// By Yu Keping
Xi should be bold in pushing change – FT.com - Financial Times editorial outlines what Xi Jinping should do..likely to listen to it as much as Cameron would listen to a People’s Daily editorial offering him advice?// Mr Xi may be tempted to smuggle in domestic reform under the cover of a more robust, even aggressive foreign policy. That would be a mistake. After years of “smile diplomacy”, which persuaded neighbours that China’s peaceful rise was good for them, many Asian countries are now fearful of China. Japan has lurched to the right partly because of concern about territorial disputes with Beijing. The Philippines has indicated it might welcome a rearmed Japan to counter a more assertive China. The dangers of an arms race – or worse – are growing. As China grows economically stronger, it will want a larger regional and global role. That is natural. But Mr Xi should work hard at dialling down the rhetoric. Here a change of tone is truly important. Territorial disputes can be frozen in the name of closer regional co-operation. That would not only be a boon for regional peace and security. It would also allow Mr Xi to concentrate on his very real problems at home.
FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS
China commentaries demand U.S. responsibility on fiscal cliff | Reuters - China’s official Xinhua news agency demanded on Tuesday that the United States live up to its global economic responsibilities, put political infighting aside and sort out the “fiscal cliff” mess. “Being the world’s only superpower and the issuer of the dominant global reserve currency, the United States has a unique role and an unshirkable duty to help cure the ailing global economy,” one of its English-language commentaries said.
Analysis: U.S. arms sales to Asia set to boom on Pacific pivot | Reuters - (Reuters) – U.S. sales of warplanes, anti-missile systems and other costly weapons to China’s and North Korea’s neighbors appear set for significant growth amid regional security jitters.Strengthening treaty allies and other security partners is central to the White House’s “pivot” toward a Pacific region jolted by maritime territorial disputes in China’s case, and missile and nuclear programs, in North Korea’s.
Onodera to review defense plans, up spending | The Japan Times Online - Amid China’s military rise and the continued threat from North Korea, new Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera has vowed to bolster Japan’s defensive capabilities by reviewing its strategies, increasing the defense budget and revising the guidelines in place with the United States.
Japan mulls spy drones for East China Sea | The Australian- and US wants to sell to South Korea as well..Drones wars ahead over East China Sea?// JAPAN is considering introducing US spy drones to boost surveillance of its territorial waters near islands in the East China Sea at the centre of a bitter dispute with Beijing, Kyodo News says. The Japanese defence ministry hopes to introduce the unmanned Global Hawk aircraft by 2015 “in a bid to counter China’s growing assertiveness at sea, especially when it comes to the Senkaku Islands”, the news agency said, citing unnamed government officials
AFP: China adds destroyers to marine surveillance: report - China has transferred two destroyers and nine other ex-navy vessels to its maritime surveillance fleet, reports said Monday, as it moves to beef up its position in bitter territorial rows with Japan and other neighbours. Beijing renovated the ships and transferred them to surveillance operations to “alleviate the insufficiency of vessels used to protect maritime interests”, Tencent, one of China’s major news portals, reported
Chinese fighters deployed to base just 380km from Diaoyutai: Duowei｜WantChinaTimes.com - Advanced Chinese fighters have begun deployment to the forward air base in Shuimen, Fujian province, in preparation for any potential confrontation with Japan over the disputed Diaoyutai (Diaoyu or Senkaku) islands, reports Duowei News, a New York-based outlet operated by overseas Chinese…The Duowei report claims that Japanese air defense radar failed to track the Y-12 attached to China’s State Oceanic Administration when it approached the disputed islands. The aircraft was apparently flown by a PLA-AF pilot instead of a State Oceanic Administration pilot, according to Duowei, because only a military airman would know how to evade radar with low attitude flying.
Demarcation chart shows Diaoyu Islands on China´s continental shelf CCTV News – CNTV English - The Chinese government has recently handed the UN a demarcation plan of the outer limits of its continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles in the East China Sea. The sea bed relief map shows that the Diaoyu Islands are on China’s continental shelf. ..Li Jiabiao also said, “The continental shelf extends from China’s land. This water area is less than 200 meters deep. In the last ice age, the whole shelf was land. That means ancient Chinese people could reach Diaoyu Island on foot.”//Diaoyu Man?
Chinese think tank: conflict inevitable between Japan, China over Senkakus – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun- BEIJING–With the rise of China as Asia’s leading economic power, a Chinese government think tank says the nation’s conflict with Japan over the Senkaku Islands is inevitable at a time when its bilateral relations are changing as a consequence.The Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) also said in its annual report that the two countries’ relationship will enter into a highly unstable period.
Times Reporter in China Is Forced to Leave Over Visa Issue – NYTimes.com - Chris Buckley, a 45-year-old Australian who has worked as a correspondent in China since 2000, rejoined The Times in September after working for Reuters. The Times applied for Mr. Buckley to be accredited to replace a correspondent who was reassigned, but the authorities did not act before Dec. 31, despite numerous requests. That forced Mr. Buckley, his partner and their daughter to fly to Hong Kong on Monday.
Twitter / S_Rabinovitch: Chris Buckley’s dedication …Picture - Chris Buckley’s dedication to getting the real China story: fording Sichuan river to reach earthquake-hit town in 2008
How far can the Chinese firewall stretch? | Stories I’d like to see–Steve Brill in Reuters - anyone here using silent circle?// And then there’s the question I raised last May about how difficult it must be for a Western reporter in China. That has to be a special problem now for the Times or Bloomberg reporters, or others chasing stories like the ones they’ve broken. How do they communicate with their editors back home in any kind of secure way? How can they keep sources protected if, as might be expected, they’re being followed and their calls monitored?
Dealing in Dialogue - -Caixin– As a national security advisor to presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush, Brent Scowcroft became one of Washington’s “old China hands.” He is a graduate of the West Point military academy, has 29 years of military experience and is now the vice chairman of international consulting firm Kissinger Associates. Scowcroft is still considered one of the United States’ leading experts on international and military policy. He recently sat down with Caixin in Washington for an interview. The following are excerpts of that interview.
Laos May Bear Cost of a Chinese Railroad – NYTimes.com- Even though the project has run into some serious objections from international development organizations, most experts expect it to go ahead anyway. That is because China considers it vital to its strategy of pulling Southeast Asia closely into its orbit and providing Beijing with another route to transport oil from the Middle East. The crucial connection would run through Oudom Xai between Kunming, the capital of China’s southern province of Yunnan, and the Laotian capital, Vientiane.
A Letter to the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China | The China Story - Germie Barme writes a wonderfully articulate and diplomatic F**K You letter to the PRC Embassy in Australia, hits all the buttons that might work on the recipients// The following letter was written in response to representations made by personnel of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Australian capital Canberra objecting to the editorial approach and some of the material in the China Story Yearbook 2012: Red Rising, Red Eclipse. In the days leading up to China’s 1 October National Day holiday these complaints were raised with officials in the Commonwealth Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and with our Centre, the Australian Centre on China in the World. Thereafter, Benjamin Penny, Deputy Director of the Centre, wrote to the Embassy on my behalf requesting that their concerns and criticisms be made available in written form so that we could publish them in the virtual pages of The China Story Journal.
Wang Xixin named deputy head of Shenyang Military Command | South China Morning Post - The People’s Liberation Army saw the start of another reshuffle of top officers before the end of last year, including the appointment of Major-General Wang Xixin, formerly deputy president of National Defence University, as deputy commander of the northeastern Shenyang Military Command.
The Hindu : News / National : In China, Delhi gang rape spurs online debate, then censorship- Chinese authorities have moved to censor news about the Delhi gang rape and ensuing protests after the incident triggered a heated debate online between State media outlets and pro-democracy voices. The incident and the protests in New Delhi in recent days have received wide attention in China. While the brutal attack was initially highlighted by Communist Party-run outlets as indicative of the failures of India’s democratic system to ensure stability, the following protests in New Delhi triggered calls from pro-reform bloggers for the Chinese government to learn from India and to allow the public to express its voice.
Chinese Hackers Suspected in Cyber Attack on Council on Foreign Relations | Washington Free Beacon- Computer hackers traced to China carried out an advanced cyberespionage attack against one of America’s most elite foreign policy web groups – the website of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).According to private computer-security forensic specialists, the hacking incident involved a relatively new type of ploy called a “drive-by” website cyber attack that was detected around 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday.
HONG KONG AND TAIWAN
Hong Kong Protesters Demand Leung Step Down on Credibility Loss – Bloomberg - Thousands of Hong Kong residents took to the streets yesterday to demand the resignation of Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying, who they say lost credibility by misleading the public about illegal renovations at his home. Almost 20,000 protesters gathered, with some carrying signs calling Leung a “liar.” Opposition lawmakers will on Jan. 9 introduce a motion calling for an investigation into Leung’s handling of the discovery of unauthorized construction on his property. About 8,500 people rallied to support the chief executive.
TECH AND MEDIA
互联网服务商：网络立法有助行业发展 – 新华传媒 – 新华网 - big Chinese Internet companies can’t wait to express support for new Internet law..let the lobbying begin, if implemented it could be very expensive, both in terms of costs to process and police real name registration as well as possibly losing the lucrative revenue streams of selling “news” placements and post deletion services..if you don’t think some of the big us-listed chinese firms still do this, call me about a beijing bridge…// 关于加强网络信息保护的决定在互联网业界引起强烈反响，各大互联网服务提供商纷纷表示，完善我国网络立法有利于行业未来发展，将贯彻这一决定，为保护公民个人信息安全尽职尽力。
人民日报-依法保障网络健康有序运行 本报评论员 - Page 1 People’s Daily 12.29 on new Internet law
亚马逊的中国式突围:不参与价格战 默默搭平台 _亚马逊（AMZN） _i美股 - 近两年来，电商的战场已经逐渐转移到平台之争。对于亚马逊来说，面对中国市场价格战等竞争，亚马逊一直采取不主动也不抗拒的平淡态度。如今，搭建平台原本是其固有的策略，而全球开店则再次巧妙地绕开了残酷的厮杀。
Qihoo Soars as Google to Ignite Revenue: China Overnight – Bloomberg - very embarrassing for citron research, j-capital, rick pearson and others who vocally called qihoo a fraud and had single digit price targets on the stock// Qihoo, which offers anti-virus programs as well as the most-used web browser in China, jumped 86 percent in 2012, the biggest gainer of the China-US gauge’s 55 stocks.
Rumor: China Mobile, Tencent Discuss Traffic Usage, Revenue Share | Marbridge Consulting – China Wireless News - China’s telecom operators have seen little upside in revenue from increasing mobile data traffic, said Wei, partly due to the effect of internet firms. “Currently, Tencent accounts for a single-digit percentage of China Mobile revenue, but Tencent accounts for over 40% of the operator’s overall data traffic,” said Wei, “how can the operator tolerate this situation?” According to media reports, Tencent’s QQ applications account for approximately 40% of Guangdong Mobile’s data traffic, but the operator only receives RMB 5 per 20MB of data traffic.
China’s 4G Expansion Dilemma -Caijing - To establish a 4G network with nationwide coverage, aside from upgrading existing 3G base stations, China Mobile needs to set up numerous 4G base stations. This cannot be accomplished in a short time. It is reported that the construction of base stations in cities such as Chengdu will be postponed. Industry insiders noted that the development path of TD-LTE will determine the international competitiveness of China’s communication technologies. Waiting for the industry chain to mature and at the same time avoiding missing the window of opportunity for TD-LTE is a test for government authorities in China.
Fei Chang Dao: 2012 in Review: Baidu’s Top Searches Include Censored Terms - As of December 25, Baidu continued to censor searches for “Bo Xilai” in Chinese, restricting search results to its broad white list. As a result, even though Baidu “highly recommended” a book by John Garnaut about Bo Xilai, it provided no search results for “薄熙来 John Garnaut,” just a censorship notice. Bing, however, provided thousands of results.
Chinese Pinterests Have to Change Courses, Thanks to Taobao - Jack Ma’s comments on social shopping sites at an internal meeting earlier this year is no secret: Taobao wouldn’t like to see a small number of them to grow big enough to have a decisive impact on retailers’ sales. He’d like to see a short-grass prairie, rather than a forest with large trees.
第一财经周刊：万亿淘宝刺激传统行业|淘宝|行业|传统_互联网_科技时代_新浪网- 无论是淘宝，还是传统百货、物流公司，以及种种围绕着淘宝和电商而活的行业，“万亿”的2012年大概都已经创造了历史。 一位浙江电视台的摄像记者，试图在12月3日的当天，在淘宝内部拍摄几个员工们庆祝“万亿”的镜头，转了好几圈，他还是没有找到，媒体似乎是这里最主要的围观者。阿里巴巴集团公关总监顾建兵对他说，“好像真没有什么庆祝的场面。”在11.11日成交额达到191亿的当天，这里的确有正式的庆祝活动，但对于万亿，则被很多人视为了理所当然。
SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY
Taking traffic regulations seriously |Top News |chinadaily.com.cn- Revised rules set to impose much heavier penalties on drivers who run red lights, drive after drinking, or make phone calls while at the wheel, as Wang Xiaodong reports . Drivers in China will have to pay more attention to traffic rules or risk paying much higher penalties, according to a revised regulation that takes effect on Tuesday.
The wow of qipao|chinadaily.com.cn - A series of promotional activities celebrating qipao culture got off to a bright start at the Shanghai Municipal Archives on the Bund, and a related exhibition is being held at the venue until the end of December.
US player asks for second chance in China after marijuana use – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Williams’ agent Shen Zhiyu cited medical reasons for his marijuana use. “Williams has been bothered by stomach problem for a long time so he brought some marijuana to China as a painkiller,” said Shen. “He suffered from a stomachache before the match and the medicine from the team doctor did not work,” he said.///rigghht
YouTube–Meet The Grandfather of Chinese Rock–Cui Jian, the biggest rockstar in China, talks about why he’s banned from playing major shows and the problems with confucianism and communism.
Reform of China’s Notoriously Tough College Entrance Exams Unlikely to Please Critics – China Real Time Report – WSJ - Major Chinese cities in recent days rolled out plans to loosen restrictions on gaokao, the famously competitive college entrance exams for a nation that treasures education, to meet a New Year’s Eve deadline set by the central government. But they might not be as far-reaching as critics had hoped.
Fewer Beijingers use private cars|chinadaily.com.cn- City’s public transport system carried daily average of 20.6m people in 2012. Some 44 percent of people in Beijing rely on public transit to get around the capital, the highest percentage of any city nationwide, according to figures released by the Beijing Municipal Commission of Transport.
Beijing Opens Four New Subway Lines to Ease Congestion – Bloomberg - rode line 6 on New Year’s day. impressive, now have three lines–1,10 and 6–within ten minutes of my apartment in CBD. Has to be good for property values and office and residential rents (if you are a landlord)// Beijing put four subway lines and extensions into operation yesterday as part of the Chinese capital’s efforts to expand its public urban transport network and ease traffic congestion.The openings bring the number of lines in the Chinese capital to 16 with a total length of 442 kilometers (275 miles), according to a statement on the website of government-owned Beijing Subway Operation Co. which runs the system.
北京怎解人口结-财经网 - 北京市人口调控政策要充分尊重城市发展规律，通过市场的方式在空间中加以疏导，不能继续利用行政的优越性使自己成为改革的孤岛，并以控调人口为借口，降低对外来人口的公共服务
NDRC Study Addresses Beijing’s Population Boom-Caijing - Without fundamental changes in the employment situation, income growth, cost of living, concentration of resources and other factors, rapid population growth in Beijing will continue in the coming years. By the Cities and Small Towns Reform and Development Center Task Force, National Development and Reform Commission Beijing’s combined population of permanent and non-permanent residents rose to 20.19 million in 2011, with the latter standing at 7.42 million.
Cowries and Rice: On This Day: The 1988-1989 Nanjing Anti-African Protests - The  Nanjing Anti-African Protests are, for me, a defining moment of Sino-African relations because they revealed how people on the ground interacted, rather than what leaders expressed to each other in meetings and documents. Now, as a diplomatic historian, I obviously put a lot of value on the latter. If one wanted to look at Sino-African relations through the prism of Bandung or FOCAC 2000, there is nothing wrong with that. Still, I wanted to write something to commemorate the anniversary of this sad event. Also, I want to emphasize that I do not believe Chinese people to be uniquely or irredeemably racist. Americans have their own history of rioting against black students, for example. I am simply trying to insure that these sorts of stories do not disappear.
Regulation to curb academic degree fraud to take effect – Xinhua | English.news.cn- The regulation specifies that, in addition to plagiarism and fabricating data in the plagiarism, buying, selling or organizing the trade of academic degree thesis will also be treated as fraudulent behavior.According to the regulation, colleges shall disqualify applicants for graduate, postgraduate, or doctoral degrees if they plagiarize or commit fraud in their academic degree thesis. The students shall be banned from applying for further degrees within three years.
Return of the China Blog–Sinica Podcast - How has the China blog scene changed in the last two years? If you’re curious about the state of affairs too, join Kaiser Kuo and Jeremy Goldkorn in our studio today as we are delighted to host two of the younger and more influential bloggers writing on China today: Eric Fish from the Economic Observer who gravitates to more analytic pieces at Sinostand, and Anthony Tao from Beijing Cream, who specializes in shorter posts and high-quality snark on Chinese popular culture.
ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT AND HEALTH
74 Chinese cities release real-time PM2.5 data – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Starting Tuesday, real-time air quality monitoring data on PM2.5 intensity in China’s 74 major cities is available at the website of www.cnemc.cn (中国环境监测总站 -). The move is considered a big improvement in air quality monitoring, made at the strong request of the public.
Beijing air quality improves for 14th consecutive year – Xinhua | English.news.cn- Beijing’s air quality has improved for 14 straight years, with major pollutants down in the city, a municipal government spokesman said Monday.The annual average concentration of major pollutants PM10 (particulate matter under 10 micrometers in diameter), sulphur dioxide and nitrogen dioxide dropped by 4 percent year on year in 2012, said Fang Li, spokesman for the municipal environmental protection bureau.
China’s taste for pork serves up a pollution problem | World news | The Guardian- No one consulted the villagers before Shengtai pig farm was built 100 metres from their homes. The farm produces 10,000 animals a year – a relatively small concern in the world of industrialised farming – but there is so much waste to dispose of, the village air is thick with the stench. In the rainy season manure escapes from the farm, covering the roads. Villagers are developing respiratory problems and Fan struggles to raise chickens and ducks, which die soon after hatching. In the 10 years since the farm arrived, the villagers have tried to get it dislodged. “We pulled down the walls several times, and blocked the gate with mud and trucks,” said Fan, a self-employed businessman. Complaints to the local government have gone unanswered, so Fan turned to internet forums to raise awareness. “We can only hope the farm will stop polluting our environment,” he added. “Our village was once a very beautiful place.”
China Chicken Probe Hurts Profit as KFC Ends Deal: Liuhe – Bloomberg - China’s biggest poultry supplier said profits will be hurt by a report that some of its chicken wasn’t properly inspected, as Yum! Brands Inc. (YUM) and McDonald’s Corp. (MCD) said they stopped buying meat from the company. Sales and profit will sustain a “certain amount of impact,” New Hope Liuhe Co. said in a Dec. 29 statement to Shenzhen’s stock exchange. State-broadcaster China Central Television reported Dec. 18 that Liuhe and other suppliers weren’t properly inspecting chicken bought from farmers for antibiotics and hormones.
Industrial Parks Breeding Pollution Disaster-Caijing - Thirty-three years after Shekou Industrial Zone, China’s first export-oriented economic development area, was established in 1979, the country is now home to over 1500 industrial parks at or above the provincial level, as well as thousands of industrial clusters. Industrial parks have played a major role in attracting enterprises and investment; however, excessive dependence on various land and tax incentives to attract investment has led to imperfect waste treatment systems at many of these government-led industrial parks. Pollution problems have become increasingly prominent.
Solar energy faces obstacles abroad and at home|chinadaily.com.cn - China’s solar manufacturing industry has risen from insignificance to dominating the globe in the past decade. But that position is now being put to the test by an anti-subsidy investigation the United States began in October 2011 and an anti-dumping investigation started by the European Union this year.
FOOD AND TRAVEL
Sichuan’s Tibetan Corner, Outside of Time – NYTimes.com - Tagong, whose altitude of about 12,000 feet makes it one of the highest towns in the world, offers an unfettered window onto the Tibetan people and culture. The region was part of Tibet until 1955, and its remoteness — to get there, you must take a single winding road several hours from the bustling provincial capital, Chengdu — has insulated it against significant change. The place has a closed-off feel, with a slow-placed existence that revolves around the major Tibetan monastery and its 60 or so resident monks. And it was easier than traveling to the Tibet Autonomous Region, which in addition to the visa and passport required to visit China, also requires a special entry permit that doesn’t promise unrestricted travel.