The Sinocism China Newsletter For 03.22.13

Alibaba is on the cover of the latest Economist Magazine. I am quoted in the very informative Alibaba: The world’s greatest bazaar. Alibaba is far more than just an Internet company, as the story concludes:

Thus Alibaba may continue to grow. Even if it does not its legacy of creating trust, encouraging a shift to consumption, and increasing the overall productivity of the retail sector will persist, to the benefit of the country as a whole. Any company that surpasses it will do so by building on those gains, not reversing them. That is why Harvard’s William Kirby, an expert on Chinese business, calls Alibaba a transformative firm—“a private company that has done more for China’s national economy than most state-owned enterprises.”

Online commerce is booming in China according to a new McKinsey report:

China’s e-commerce market, largest in the world behind the U.S., is booming, with sales expected to reach $420 billion to $650 billion by 2020, up from $190 billion to $210 billion in 2012, according to McKinsey. Around 40% of China’s consumers wouldn’t have made purchases if not for the option of e-commerce, added the report, which used data provided by a major online company to analyze online spending from consumers in 266 cities.

Caixin has translated a recent report (“三马”众安在线试水) about Alibaba’s efforts to expand into finance. Promise and Problems examines the prospects for an online insurance joint venture between Alibaba, Tencent and Ping An:

Alibaba has never hidden its desire to transform its dominance in e-commerce to something of comparable significance in the financial sector. Its independent small-loan business, which launched in 2010, has lent up to 28 billion yuan to small and family businesses operating on its websites, Guoxin Securities’ research shows.

Its two small-loan subsidiaries, with a combined registered capital of only 1.6 billion yuan, have raised funds to finance expansion through trust companies and asset securitization schemes. It is also mulling plans for a service that would allow users to buy things on credit. From the looks of it, the only barrier standing between Alibaba and it becoming a real bank is a license.

The Economist “Leader” accompanying the Alibaba cover story opines that:

…the greatest threat to the company’s future will be at home. Like Amazon or eBay, Alibaba needs to be monitored by antitrust regulators. But the politics of China pose a particular risk. Big banks are already lobbying against its financial arm. The Communist Party is bound to be jealous of an outfit that has so much data on Chinese citizens. For the government to clip Alibaba’s wings without a good cause would be wrong. Alibaba has the potential to become the world’s most valuable company, and in the process help create a better China.

Full disclosure, I own shares (not many unfortunately) in Yahoo which in turns owns a large stake in Alibaba.

Bloomberg names some of the investors who stand to lose big from the collapse of Suntech:

Mount Kellett Capital Management LP, Driehaus Capital Management LLC and Pioneer Investment Management Inc. were the Suntech’s largest bondholders, with about 23 percent of the debt, according to December public filings compiled by Bloomberg.

The largest outside owners of Suntech’s American depositary receipts are Renaissance Technologies Corp., Invesco Ltd (IVZ). and Shah Capital Management. None of the bondholders or shareholders were available for comment.

Those investors may not see any money back but perhaps they will find some satisfaction in the Shanghai Securities News report today that Suntech founder and former head Shi Zhengrong has been barred from leaving China as authorities start to look at possible improper dealings (施正荣被限制出境 知情人:他有麻烦了).

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT

China, Russia move toward full-fledged strategic partnership – Xinhua | English.news.cn Vladimir Putin included China in his first foreign trip after assuming the Russian presidency last year. Xi Jinping, after his election as Chinese president last week, also chose Moscow to be the first foreign capital to visit as China’s head of state. The reciprocation reflects the fact that both countries see each other as the principal priority of their foreign relations, which was reaffirmed in a phone call made by Putin to congratulate Xi on his election.

Foreign policy: Changing faces | The Economist First trips matter: leaders meet friends before those with whom they have trickier relations. China and Russia, antagonists a few decades ago, are now on remarkably good terms. President Vladimir Putin has been assiduous in cultivating Mr Xi. Both countries resent American global dominance, as well as Western intervention in others’ affairs, notably in Syria. And as a new report by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace points out, with tensions between China and Japan rising alarmingly over island disputes, Mr Xi may want to reaffirm smooth relations on China’s long Russian flank.

China bans some cash remittances to N. Korea, but loopholes remain – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun DANDONG, China–The Chinese government has ordered a major Chinese bank to freeze some remittances to North Korea from Dandong, a cross-border trading city. According to financial sources, Beijing imposed a freeze on certain transactions by the Dandong branch of the China Construction Bank earlier this month after the U.N. Security Council responded to a third nuclear test by North Korea in February with new financial sanctions.

As Pollution Worsens in China, Solutions Succumb to Infighting – NYTimes.com infighting within the government bureaucracy is one of the biggest obstacles to enacting stronger environmental policies. Even as some officials push for tighter restrictions on pollutants, state-owned enterprises — especially China’s oil and power companies — have been putting profits ahead of health in working to outflank new rules, according to government data and interviews with people involved in policy negotiations.

Carbon Copy: Why China’s Air-Pollution Problem Isn’t Unique – Aaron Reuben – The Atlantic Because China’s cities so famously suffer from severe air pollution, it might seem impertinent, then, to ask the following question: Is China’s air pollution really that bad? In other words, is it a unique environmental catastrophe warranting international concern? Or is its poor air quality instead the natural conclusion of rapid development with high rates of industrial growth, urbanization, and increasing population density, with warnings exacerbated by an over-attentive media? Does China, in short, truly deserve its reputation as an environmental pariah? Ramon Guardans, a biologist who studies air pollution and co-chairs a global monitoring plan on toxic chemicals for the United Nations Environment Program, is skeptical.

Closer Look: What Should China Do with 18 Mln Pigs Carcasses Every Year? – Caixin Information from other sources backs Yu. There has been no significant rise in pig deaths in Jiaxing this year. As a major pig farming city, Jiaxing raised about 4 million of the animals every year. If a normal death rate from disease is used, about 3 percent, this means the city has to handle about 120,000 dead pigs per year. China raises more pigs than any other country in the world. Rough statistics show that it had nearly 700 million pigs in 2012. That means, about 18 million pigs died of disease every year. How does China handle such a large number? The ministry says pigs that die from disease are usually buried or burned. But in reality, many farmers illegally sell them or simply dump the carcasses.

‘If I Talk About Housing, I’ll Cry’: A Viral Post About the Real-Life Impact of Beijing’s Skyrocketing Home Prices | Tea Leaf Nation grim. this sounds harsh but Beijing is a world-class city, along the lines of New York, Tokyo or London, with 20m+ people. How many New Yorkers or Londoners or Tokyo residents, especially 20 somethings, can afford to live in or near the city center as opposed to commuting in from a suburb? very few, and beijing is trying to address it by building further out from the city center and upgrading the public transportation network…but things have moved so fast here, the suburban/satellite building/transportation networks have lagged, and now it is kind of like trying to expand and upgrade a plane while it is flying at 30,000 feet…the government needs to release more land for sale, speed up affordable satellite city construction while managing social expectations// As Chinese authorities try–and repeatedly fail–to cool off the nation’s red-hot real estate market, the real-world impact of high housing prices is being keenly felt in the nation’s capital, Beijing. In a recent viral post on Douban, a Chinese social media platform featuring discussion of books, music, and movies popular among the country’s young intelligentsia, user @斯弥的日记 explained exactly how

Chinese youths brought into anti-waste campaign – Xinhua | English.news.cn The Ministry of Education has called on every school and kindergarten to draft detailed measures for preventing food waste and promoting the spirit of frugality among students. According to a circular released Thursday, primary and middle schools across the country should arrange special personnel to supervise students’ dining habits, as well as incorporate students’ frugality performances into the evaluation of their all-around qualities and the student award system.

 

BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

China manufacturing rises but first-quarter momentum may be muted | Reuters Growth in China’s vast manufacturing sector picked up in March after a holiday dip, a preliminary survey of factory managers showed on Thursday, pointing towards solid but not spectacular first-quarter growth in the world’s second-largest economy.

Lies, Damned Lies, and Chinese Statistics – By Tom Orlik | Foreign Policy The reality of China’s official data today is not the crude controlling hand of the Politburo dictating the GDP growth figure. It is an increasingly reliable and comprehensive set of economic indicators that remain compromised in some areas by the difficulty of measuring a rapidly changing economy, imperfect surveying methods, a recalcitrant sample set (the Chinese public), and continued political sensitivity. The system is not perfect. But neither is it a farce.

Within China’s Smog, a Silver Lining for Investors – WSJ.com mother in law been playing these, they could have a lot more to run, still has not been a robust policy response since the recent worsening/revelations,  this is not a market based on fundamentals, nor has it ever been// Investors have already taken the cue. The 43 mainland-listed stocks categorized as “environment protection related” by Chinese data provider Wind have significantly outperformed the overall the Chinese market, up 60% versus the market’s 24% gain since stocks bottomed in early December.

Pernod Plunges as China Extravagance Crackdown Softens Sales – Bloomberg Distillers including Pernod and Remy Cointreau SA (RCO) have benefited from demand for their higher-priced spirits in China, particularly cognac, as sales growth becomes tougher to achieve in the straitened economies of Europe. Chinese President Xi Jinping has been cracking down on extravagant gift-giving and feasting by businessmen and government officials.

房贷利率告别“折扣”大势所趋 新华社——经济参考网 no more mortage discounts for first time home buyers?// 业内分析人士称,房贷告别“折扣时代”已是大势所趋,对于想圆住房梦的“刚需族”来说,面临的真正障碍是房价能否与收入相匹配,只要房价是合理稳定的,房贷利率将不再是牵肠挂肚的问题。

中钢协谋划国内铁矿石定价机制 新华社——经济参考网 《经济参考报》记者了解到,伴随着铁矿石疯狂炒作,国内钢厂对目前定价模式的质疑呼声渐涨。中国钢铁协会副会长兼秘书长张长富在21日举行的“2013年冶金矿产品国际会议”上首次公开表示,目前铁矿石市场人为操控痕迹严重,特别是三大矿山沿用的普氏指数为基准的定价模式,其采集样本数量过少不具备代表性,操作过程也缺乏透明度。对此,一方面要坚决抵制,另一方面,国内市场也正在积极推进利用现货平台构建自己的定价机制。

房企主动停工?天津响螺湾暂成“空城”_财经频道_一财网 first financial looks at the the “empty city” that is tianjin’s xiangluo wan // 3月中旬,天津海河旁的风刮得刺骨。刚拉开的夜幕,将密密麻麻的水泥高楼罩住,高高的塔吊立在裸露的空楼顶上,见不到几盏灯。写着承建商名字的施工挡板后,少数工地传出施工声,此外几乎没有其他声响。如同走在黑暗的钢筋森林,除了偶尔有一群建筑工人,少见行人。这里是天津响螺湾商务区。2006年开始到此寻梦的房地产企业,如今“攥”着他们在这里的项目,徘徊在“十字路口”。

China’s Hidden Debt Risk-Caijing Many of these heavily indebted enterprises are state-owned, and have borrowed from state-controlled banks. The implicit guarantees on this debt, too, suggest that the government’s liabilities are much higher than its balance sheet indicates. China is not too big to fail. In a fragile economic environment, policymakers cannot afford to allow the size of China’s balance sheet to distract them from the underlying structural risks and contingent liabilities that threaten its financial stability.//Zhang Monan is a fellow of the China Information Center, a fellow of the China Foundation for International Studies, and a researcher at the China Macroeconomic Research Platform.

 

POLITICS AND LAW

张毅将出任国资委党委书记_政经频道_财新网 Zhang Yi to be party secretary of SASAC. Jiang Jiemin just took over as chairman. the previous head, Wang Yong, was both chairman and party secretary. is this addition of a party secretary a sign about Jiang’s future? rumors this one of the moves in a much larger tiger hunt, wonder if/whenwe will find out

汤灿_百度百科 sounds like tang can was generally an important playmate and figure in corruption investigations…disappeared since december 2011 when supposedly taken away for questioning, rumors she has jumped into the next world

China Police Detains Billionaire Businessman Liuhan: Report-Caijing and part of a bigger tiger hunt? Sichuan connection noteworthy// Liu’s detention is related to Macau casinos, one of the areas the company has sprawled in the capital market, the 21st Century Business Herald said, citing a source close to Hanlong. The source added though the specific situation is unknown. “It’s either about casinos, or debts, or underground money laundering,” another unnamed capital market insider said, “Considering frequent casino incidents related with the riches now in China, [Liu's case] is definitely related to cross-border capital flows.

Premier: Transforming gov’t functions is new cabinet’s first task – Xinhua | English.news.cn Li made the remarks at the first plenary meeting of the new cabinet on Wednesday, which marked the official start of the central government’s new term in performing its duty. He asked all departments to act conscientiously to achieve various goals for transforming government functions within the time limit, urging them not to be superficial in the reform by only “changing the liquid but not the drugs.”

人民日报-以发展筑牢梦想根基 —— 四论同心共筑中国梦 本报评论员 fourth in a series of page 1 people’s daily commentaries on building the China Dream, this one concludes by quoting Liang Qichao, i think the last one concluded by quoting Lu Xun// 1902年,梁启超在《新中国未来记》中,这样描绘他的“中国梦”:无端忽作太平梦,放眼昆仑绝顶来。实现民族复兴,是无数中华儿女的百年梦想,经历了艰辛探索和不懈奋斗,中国人民比以往任何时候都更加清醒地认识到一个颠扑不破的真理:发展才能自强,实干才能兴邦。

人民日报-下一代互联网等六大新兴产业集群加快发展 中关村领跑自主创新(改革开放新地标) Beijing’s Zhongguancun area gets page 1 People’s daily love for being leader in innovation, landmark for reform and opening

Graphics: Majority of Top State Council Positions Taken by Central Committee – Caixin The recent reshuffle of the State Council cut down on the number its departments to 25. Most ministers, chairmen, directors and deputies announced as heads of State Council departments were also included in the Communist Party’s 205-member central committee, or the committee’s 171- alternate members

造价千亿哈大高铁疑因工程偷工减料延缓提速_网易新闻中心 construction corruption issues suspected on harbin-dalian high speed railway, the one that “mysteriously” won’t allow trains to run faster than 200 km/h // 核心提示:2012年12月,哈尔滨至大连客运正式运营。哈大客专造价超千亿元,设计时速350公里,实际运行时速却不到200公里,被称为中国高铁中的“一朵奇葩”。近日,记者获悉其原定于2013年4月1日提速计划延迟,疑与工程偷工减料问题有关。

China spins away from propaganda – FT.com The two men who are expected to lead the country for the next decade exude a confidence and composure that their predecessors lacked and they talk about their country in a subtly different way. Over the past week, Financial Times reporters were able to observe Mr Li up close on two occasions, the second of these during a bilateral meeting with Jack Lew, the new US Treasury secretary. On both occasions Mr Li spoke about China and the US as if they are equals and acted as if China is, at least, the second most powerful and important country in the world. This is an attitude that Mr Xi clearly shares.

Xi Jinping shares his views on being a leader | South China Morning Post Quoting a Chinese proverb that says “governing a big country is as delicate as cooking a small dish”, Xi warned the nation’s leaders to completely devote themselves to their work. He also urged them to handle their responsibilities “as if they are walking on thin ice or standing on the edge of an abyss”. Xi made the remarks in an interview on Tuesday with major media outlets from the BRICS nations – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.

观察站:习近平首谈治国术 如临深渊有别胡温_多维新闻网 【多维新闻】北京时间3月19日,就在中国国家主席习近平对俄罗斯等国进行国事访问并出席金砖国家领导人第五次会晤前夕,他在人民大会堂接受了多家媒体采访。在习回答巴西记者“领导一个13亿人口大国,感受是什么”时,习近平表示,这样一个大国,这样多人民,这么复杂的国情,领导者要有“如履薄冰,如临深渊”的自觉,要有“治大国如烹小鲜”的态度,丝毫不敢懈怠不敢马虎,必须夙夜在公勤勉工作。 对此观察人士在接受多维新闻采访时表示,习近平的这番表态不仅展现出这位根正苗红的“太子党”对中国传统文化的熟悉,也在某种方面看出,他的执政理念和执政手段与前任胡锦涛、温家宝的不同。

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS

China extremely concerned about U.S.-Japan island talk | Reuters The Pentagon confirmed talks were being held on Thursday and Friday between Shigeru Iwasaki, head of the Japanese Self-Defence Forces’ joint staff, and Samuel Locklear, commander of U.S. forces in the Asia-Pacific, but said they were meant to discuss “the overall security environment in the Asia-Pacific region.”

Australia’s Defence Tsar slips quietly into Beijing | Little Red Blog As the guests gathered to listen to mother of four Ambassador Frances Adamson pour praise on Australian children’s literature – more and more of which is being translated into many languages  – she also singled out her former boss Dennis Richardson for a special mention. Sure, Australia’s one-time chief spy promoted her into the job before moving to head the Defence Department late last year but at a literary bash? It turns out Richardson was up the back listening, glass in hand, having quietly slipped into Beijing over the weekend in his first trip to the Chinese capital in his latest role. As befits the former head of ASIO, he was mum on the reasons and the Australian Embassy goes out of its way not to advise media when our mandarin’s visit. Embassy sources have suggested that the trip was organized in a hurry, not that anyone will confirm or deny that.

Chinese president vows to boost ties with Vietnam – Xinhua | English.news.cn Chinese President Xi Jinping said Thursday that his country will work with Vietnam to enhance bilateral exchanges and cooperation in various fields.The healthy and stable development of China-Vietnam relations is of great significance to the promotion of socialism in both countries and also to the peace and common development of the region and of the world, Xi told Vietnamese Communist Party chief Nguyen Phu Trong in a telephone conversation.

Jakarta forum hit by China-Taiwan spat – FT.com A Taiwanese delegation pulled out of a high-profile regional security forum in Jakarta at the last minute after Beijing protested to the Indonesian government about their presence. The four-person delegation from Taiwan had planned to attend the two-day Jakarta International Defense Dialogue, which began in the Indonesian capital on Wednesday.

China’s Testing Woes Remind That Developing Carrier Planes Is Hard | Danger Room | Wired.com There have been at least three close calls involving the small force of experimental J-15s since the Chinese navy established its initial carrier aviation task force in late 2006. The accidents and near-accidents are detailed in a remarkable story published this week on the Chinese website Sina — remarkable because Sina gets its information directly from state-run media outlets, which rarely cop to mistakes on the part of the mighty Chinese military.

国家海洋局将明确海警局执法权和武器配备问题 – 新华法治 – 新华网 中国国家海洋局新闻发言人石青峰20日在北京表示,重新组建国家海洋局将有利于加强海洋生态文明建设、维护海洋生态环境和海洋权益,目前重组工作正在有序推进。此外,针对新成立的中国海警局是否具有刑事执法权以及配备重型武器等问题,石青峰透露,即将出台的方案将给予明确。

Cybersecurity Lobby Surges as Congress Considers New Laws – Bloomberg heaven for the Shanghai floating pigs would be reincarnation into a world with this DC-sized trough// “Cybersecurity is a lobbyist’s dream,” Rogan Kersh, provost at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, who researches political influence, said in an interview. Washington’s plan to fight attacks had Raytheon Co. and Lockheed Martin Corp., which want to sell security products, lobbying on cyber bills and appropriations. Sectors targeted by hackers, such as banking and energy, have their trade groups pushing for liability protection for sharing threat information. Verizon Communications Inc. told lawmakers it wants “greater cybersecurity without technology mandates or prescriptive rules.”

Here are Google’s plans to put itself at the core of Myanmar’s nascent internet infrastructure – Quartz Baidu and/or Tencent have myanmar plans? Beijing might take notice of google doing this// Sources at Google told Quartz about the following services that the company plans to launch over the next few months. (A spokesperson said the company had “nothing to announce at this time regarding product launches or future launches in Myanmar.”)

As Hacking Continues, Concerns Chinese-Americans May Suffer – NYTimes.com But Chinese-Americans have a particular concern, different from other Americans. That concern is that Chinese-Americans, regardless of their loyalty or how many generations their families have been in the U.S., or how assimilated they are, will be blamed wrongly for the actions of foreign individuals with whom we have no relationship.

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN

Hong Kong Homes Face 20% Price Drop as Banks Raise Rates – Bloomberg Hong Kong officials, who have struggled in vain for three years to slow the growth in home prices, are about to get their wish as the city’s biggest banks raise mortgage rates. Prices could fall as much as 20 percent over the next two years, according to Deutsche Bank AG, after lenders including HSBC Holdings Plc, Hong Kong’s biggest by assets, and Standard Chartered Plc raise their home loan rates by 25 basis points in response to tighter risk rules.

Hong Kong Sevens Expands Competition as Bankers Defy Job Cuts – Bloomberg Hong Kong hosts a record 28 teams for its annual Sevens rugby tournament this weekend as bankers and brokers defy job cuts to snap up tickets for the premier event on the international circuit. All tickets and corporate boxes are sold out for the three- day competition at the 40,000-seat Hong Kong Stadium, according to the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union. The event is part of a nine-tournament series held around the world, with New Zealand leading the standings after the first five legs.

 

TECH AND MEDIA

China Unicom Profit Beats Estimates on Cheap Smartphones – Bloomberg last night heard from a mobile game firm CEO about a non-name 300 RMB smartphone that he said works great…good luck to mobile phone manufacturers trying to protect their margins…// Chairman Chang Xiaobing pared costs by luring new smartphone subscribers with low-cost devices priced at 1,000 yuan or less after the company lost its advantage as the only Chinese carrier to offer Apple Inc. (AAPL)’s iPhone with a service plan. The greater variety of devices has helped Unicom close the gap with larger China Mobile Ltd. (941), which operates a third- generation service that isn’t compatible with popular handsets like the iPhone. China Telecom Corp. started offering subsidized Apple handsets last March to gain share.

China’s microblogging queen reigns over tens of millions | Video | Reuters.com loved her in 潜伏// She’s got 40 million followers on Weibo – China’s popular microblog – well outstripping Justin Bieber’s Twitter following. Who is Yao Chen and why has she become an online obsession on the mainland?

人民网发布中央级媒体及地方党报微博排行榜–舆情频道–人民网 2012年7月21日北京暴雨之夜,人民日报开通法人微博,仅用三四个月时间,粉丝数突破纸媒发行量,成为互联网上一道靓丽的风景。 迄今,中央级媒体及各级党报开设法人微博和机构微博近百家,很好地贯彻了中央指示精神:“主流媒体要积极主动进军微博领域,办好法人微博,鼓励编辑记者开办个人微博,把微博领域的主流声音做大做强。”这些体制内媒体微博与13万家党政机关和领导干部开设的“政务微博”一道,积极回应民意关切,主动设置议程,诠释和传播党和政府的方针政策、社会主义主流价值观,初步形成了互联网上正面舆论的强势,夺回了互联网上的麦克风。

Top censor Cai Fuchao a long-time party man | South China Morning Post Professor Qiao Mu , who teaches communications at Beijing Foreign Studies University, said an imminent challenge to the merger of the broadcast watchdog and print censor would be dealing with potentially large numbers of redundant staff. Qiao said that during previous restructurings of central government agencies, many of the redundant civil servants were sent to participate in government-funded studies at colleges. But almost all of these workers came back to their original agencies a few years later.

Chinese Moviegoers Boost Global Ticket Sales 6% to $34.7 Billion – Bloomberg Chinese movie fans led worldwide cinema sales ahead 6 percent to a record $34.7 billion last year, as the world’s most-populous nation passed Japan to become the No. 2 film market. Movie-goers in China increased their box-office spending by 36 percent to $2.7 billion last year, according to the Motion Picture Association of America, the Washington-based trade group, which released year-end statistics yesterday.

Tencent’s $330M Epic Games investment absorbed 40 percent of developer [Updated] | Polygon In the months following the acquisition of stock for $330 million, a number of high profile people left Epic Games. The month after the acquisition was finalized, Gears of War producer Rod Fergusson left Epic Games to work on Irrational Games’ Bioshock Infinite and three leads at Bulletstorm developer People Can Fly, which was acquired by Epic in 2007, left. In October, Cliff Bleszinski left the studio after two decades with the company. In December, the president of Epic Games, Mike Capps, announced that he was retiring from his role at the company and “transitioning into an advisory role as well as remaining on the Epic board of directors.” Earlier this month, Capps gave up that connection with the company too, saying he is no longer affiliated with Epic.

乐蜂网暗指聚美优品售假 两大美妆电商爆发一哥之争_科技频道_凤凰网 发酵足有一个月的国内美妆电商“头牌”之争——聚美优品与乐蜂网的口水战正变得有些难以收场。随着乐蜂网高调发布2013年化妆品行业白皮书,声称“专柜售价的七折是网上化妆品正品的底限”后,动辄三四折售卖国际大牌美妆产品的聚美优品似乎被击中了“命门”。

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

Call for reform of English language assessments |Society |chinadaily.com.cn Chinese political advisers have called for reforms of the English language testing system to make it more effective in cultivating actual language ability.[YES THAT WOULD BE GOOD] ”Currently, the English testing system in China puts too much pressure on students to get high marks and ignores the development of their comprehensive language capabilities,” said Yang Xueyi, a Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference National Committee member and Party chief of Beijing Foreign Studies University.

Intellectual click: Mainland Chinese students join the Mooc revolution | South China Morning Post For years mainland students have flocked to top universities overseas for their education, but today greater numbers are turning to the newest education frontier: the internet. Students are embracing the idea of online learning through access to massive online open courses, or “Mooc platforms”, such as edX and Coursera, and one mainland recruitment company is preparing to sink millions of dollars into establishing its own platform.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT AND HEALTH

财政部官员涉嫌受贿2400万受审 三元等被索贿|财政部|官员|涉嫌受贿_新浪财经_新浪网 京华时报[微博]讯(记者孙思娅)昨天,财政部企业司综合处原处长陈柱兵因涉嫌受贿2400余万在市一中院受审。据了解,陈柱兵索贿情节严重,被索贿公司还包括北京三元公司,同时他还在被派援藏期间向藏企索要贿赂。记者了解到,陈柱兵被控涉嫌9起受贿,数额总计为2454.4万元,与其共同受审的还有另外5人,其中既有向陈柱兵行贿的企业工作人员,也有陈柱兵受贿的同伙。同时,陈柱兵在9项指控中,有6项存在索贿情节。

Biotech in China: an Interview with a Life Sciences Venture Capital Expert, Part I | Asia Health Care Blog Today we present part one of a three part interview with Mr. Justin Chakma, an analyst at Thomas, McNerney & Partners, a $600 million dollar life sciences venture fund with three locations in the United States.

50,000 Chinese die of TB annually: official |Society |chinadaily.com.cn Currently, there are 5 million Chinese people who suffer from active tuberculosis, or TB, ranking China second following India among 22 countries that are most heavily plagued by the disease.About 120,000 new cases of multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB) are estimated to occur each year, ranking China first in the world and posing challenges to public health

 

FOOD AND TRAVEL

Dine: Brian McKenna @ The Courtyard, Beijing – Scene Asia – WSJ It’s hard to argue with a prime spot on the Forbidden City’s moat, but even that wasn’t enough to save the Courtyard, the celebrity-frequented restaurant and art gallery in Beijing that last year closed after more than a decade in business. The space was reborn in February as Brian McKenna @ The Courtyard, with a revamped interior and a contemporary European menu that incorporates Asian ingredients.

 

BEIJING

Exorbitant property prices reported in Beijing university district | South China Morning Post yes was a top topic on weibo for a day or so… parents probably think it worth every penny if it gets your child into the 中关村二小 school// Apart from rising city-wide prices, increases in the neighbourhood have been fuelled by speculation and investors looking to cash in on the area, home to one of Beijing’s most prestigious primary schools. many parents label the neighbourhood as being at “the centre of the universe”. Last October, a 38 sq m flat sold for a staggering 60,500 yuan per sq ft. Wudaokou is also home to many top universities including Peking University, Tsinghua University and the University of Science and Technology Beijing. // Chinese story on this

河北兴隆20年堆出2.3万米平垃圾山 威胁北京水源(图)_资讯频道_凤凰网 on a Hebei “trash mountain” that threatens part of beijing’s water supply// 20年间,一个县城的生活垃圾被悉数倒进50米深的山沟,日积月累,与山等高。258省道从脏臭的垃圾山旁穿越而过,这里被过往司机称为“地标”。 反对声中,垃圾山被黄土覆盖,废弃并成为荒山,而在“山”脚下,垃圾山已开始断层。 这是河北省兴隆县青松岭垃圾场,距天津蓟县杨庄水库约20公里。垃圾山下的山沟在夏季暴雨时成为天然的泄洪道,流水直接经泃河注入杨庄水库。 北京四大水源地之一的金海湖,与杨庄水库相通。

京城四环内在售现房不到3000套 东三环升值最快_中国经济网??国家经济门户 据亚豪机构统计显示,北京四环以内在售现房共有2872套,面积为37.78万平方米。从北京城区中心向外,在售现房的数量逐渐递增——二环以内在售现房191套,二环至三环之间在售现房683套,三环至四环之间在售现房1998套。“卖一套少一套”,近两年,北京四环内新增房源的数量越来越少,先前开盘的老项目不少已是尾房在售,为可以随时入住的现房。

 

BOOKS AND LITERATURE

Amazon.com: Great Wall of Numbers: Business Opportunities & Challenges in China eBook: Tim Swanson: Kindle Store Should you or your company expand into China? What are some of the goods and services that Chinese consumers want to buy? What kinds of risks are involved in doing business on the mainland? These questions and dozens more are discussed in detail as Tim Swanson interviews more than forty businesspeople, entrepreneurs, professors and market research experts regarding the potential opportunities and challenges of doing business in China. Dispensing of hyperbole and exaggerated rhetoric, these local professionals are all real people with real experiences connected to China. In addition, Swanson meticulously provides a plethora of statistics, citing more than 1,200 sources to provide hard data points to the anecdotes of the interviewees.

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  • George H

    There is only one way to control Beijing’s housing price.

    (1) Set a national policy that no further national funds will be allowed to be used in Beijing for any purpose, from housing to infrastructure, which include schools, hospitals, sports facilities, cultural outlets (theaters, museums, exhibition centers), transportation, energy infrastructure etc. The city government must be responsible for its own finance. All funds will be transferred to other cities, mainly second tier cities.

    (2) Move the capital to a different city.

    • http://www.sinocism.com/ Bill Bishop

      Never going to happen

      • George H

        LOL.

        China is the Middle Kingdom, the center of the world. Beijing is the center of China. The emperor is the center of the people. He needs to stay in the center and he must be grand. (Did I imply the emperor is a man?)