Happy Monday from swampy, summer-like DC. This week may a be fairly slow news period in China as the country gears up for the National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival (October 4 this year) holidays that will have most people on vacation from October 1 through October 8. The Sinocism paywall will launch soon after the holiday ends.
North Korea’s Kim Jong-un may try to ruin Xi’s vacation. Do not be surprised if there is another provocative test on or around the October 1 PRC National Day.
If you are in DC on October 4 consider going to the Hudson Institute to see Guo Wengui. Bill Gertz will interview him.
US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is in Beijing today, working on preparations for Trump’s November visit. Expect Beijing to be more than happy to give some “twitterable” big deals, less likely to move on anything structurally significant.
The Essential Eight
1. Xi’s Deconstruction of The Communist Youth League
Background: Since 2012 Xi has systematically picked apart the Communist Youth League (CYL), the power center for Hu Jintao, Li Keqiang, and Hu Chunhua among others. Qin Yizhi, recent head of the CYL, was just demoted, a new book from Xi details his frustrations with the group, and the CYL’s University is no more.
The building demolition involves the China Youth University of Political Studies 中国青年政治学院, a way station for Youth League cadres. The institution is commonly known as the Central School of China Communist Youth League. Both names are inscribed in Chinese on the gatepost of the university’s campus in western Beijing.
At least they used to be. On Sept. 12, the long-established and influential school was reborn under a new name.The Central School of China Communist Youth League was absorbed into the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, China’s biggest think tank, and reborn as the University of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.
Comment: Hu Jintao, Li Keqiang and Hu Chunhua have all been head of the school. I am kicking myself, heard about this move over a month ago and somehow neglected to put it in the newsletter…
Baidu Baike entry on the school-中国青年政治学院 编辑 China Youth University of Political Studies
Collection of president’s remarks on the once influential faction comes amid confirmation Communist Youth League’s outgoing chief has been demoted..
Wu Qiang, a former political science lecturer at Tsinghua University in Beijing, said Xi’s trenchant criticism of the youth league reflected his intention to transform it from a bureaucracy to an organisation that can mobilise the masses – much in line with the party’s rekindled “mass line” campaign, developed by Mao Zedong, to reconnect with the public.
Why This Matters: Heading into the 19th Party Congress Xi is making it crystal clear that the League is now his to mold, which probably does not bold well for the political future of Hu Chunhua.
2. Wang Qishan Invites Steve Bannon To Tea In Beijing
Comment: Great scoop by the Financial Times, interesting move by Wang, no way he did it without Xi’s approval, and it makes perfect sense. Why wouldn’t Beijing want to have direct talks with the man who was so instrumental in Trump’s win, and in the “America First” movement? The New York Times reports that the intermediary who arranged the meeting between Goldman Sachs alum Bannon and Wang was Goldman Sachs alum John Thornton. Wang seems to really have a soft spot for Goldman…
Wang’s meeting of course has triggered speculation about what this means for his political future. Wang has been active in the last week meeting the Singapore Prime Minister and then Bannon. I do not think this looks like a man who is about to lose power at the 19th Party Congress but do not take my word for it. No one seems to know right now.
The meeting occurred at Zhongnanhai, the Chinese leadership compound, after Mr Bannon had visited Hong Kong to give a closed-door speech at a big investor conference hosted by CLSA, a Chinese state-owned brokerage and investment group…
Mr Wang, who is seen as the second most powerful person in China after President Xi Jinping, arranged through an intermediary for a 90-minute meeting after learning that Mr Bannon was speaking on the topic, according to the second person, who stressed there was no connection to President Donald Trump’s upcoming visit to China.
John L. Thornton, a former president of Goldman Sachs who has taught at Tsinghua University in Beijing and has longstanding ties to the Chinese leadership, helped arrange Mr. Bannon’s meeting with Mr. Wang, which was first reported by the Financial Times on Thursday.
He met with two other Chinese officials while in Beijing, one of whom selects articles from the People’s Daily for the Chinese leadership, according to two people briefed on the meetings. The purpose, these people said, was to discuss the rise of economic nationalism and populism.
Three people briefed on this month’s meeting said it was initiated by Mr Wang in early September, at least one week before Mr Bannon left Washington for a well-publicised appearance at an investor conference in Hong Kong.
3. Xi’s Unprecedented Reshuffling of The PLA Leadership
Over the past five years, Xi has carried out sweeping changes that have eluded his predecessors. They range from a far-reaching reorganization of the PLA high command to the largest ever anti-corruption crackdown within the military that has claimed more than 100 generals, including some of the most senior officers. Many of these initiatives, especially the organizational changes, are still being implemented and will take several more years to complete, but Xi declared at the parade that a new military institution is beginning to take shape: “The people’s army now has a new system, a new structure, a new pattern and a new look”.
Why It Matters: Xi continues to remind everyone inside the system that he controls the gun. And it is a much bigger and more capable gun than the PRC has ever had.
Lieutenant General Li Qiaoming visited troops stationed in Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning provinces – near the North Korean border – recently in his new role as commander of the theatre command, state news agency Xinhua reported on Thursday.
He was accompanied by General Xu Qiliang, vice-chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), which runs the People’s Liberation Army.
4. Gold Rush on The Way To Becoming A Military Superpower
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, made the remarks while presiding over the second plenary session of the Central Commission for Integrated Military and Civilian Development, which he also heads.
The session adopted a plan for the development of defense science, technology and industry during the 13th five-year-plan period (2016-2020), and guidelines on advancing integrated military and civilian development in defense science, technology and industry.
CCTV Evening News on the meeting- 习近平主持召开中央军民融合发展委员会第二次全体会议强调 向军民融合发展重点领域聚焦用力 以点带面推动整体水平提升
5. North Korea Sanctions Ramping Up
Comment: The PRC seems on board, the US clearly told Beijing to clean up its banking relationships ahead of the Friday announcement (the language “these sanctions will be forward looking” is a tell on that), though fines for at least one large PRC bank are still possible. And as much as Trump’s approach has succeeded in getting Xi’s support, do not expect sanctions to solve the fundamental challenge of a nuclear North Korea with missiles that can hit the US.
This new Executive Order will authorize Treasury to impose a range of sanctions, such as suspending U.S. correspondent account access to any foreign bank that knowingly conducts or facilitates significant transactions tied to trade with North Korea or certain designated persons. These sanctions will be forward looking, and applied to behavior that occurs following the date of the Executive Order. Foreign financial institutions are now on notice that, going forward, they can choose to do business with the United States or with North Korea, but not both.
China announced Saturday that it will limit energy supplies to North Korea and stop buying its textiles under U.N. sanctions imposed over its nuclear and missile development, further reducing support from Pyongyang’s last ally.
Exports of refined petroleum to the North will be limited to 2 million barrels per year, effective Jan. 1, the Commerce Ministry said. Sales of liquefied natural gas are banned outright.
“The North Koreans have figured out that the Chinese are genuinely in a bind,” said Euan Graham, director of International Security Program at the Lowy Institute in Sydney. “Having cried wolf for so long about having limited influence, the Chinese genuinely do have limited influence in North Korea right now. It’s not just weasel words.”..
“Sanctions, in my view, will not reverse North Korea’s resolute determination,” said Shen Dingli, deputy dean of Fudan University’s Institute of International Studies in Shanghai.
6. Can China Have Politically Correct, World-Class Universities?
The ministries of education and finance and the country’s top economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission, released a long-anticipated list of 42 universities that have been handpicked to be transformed into world-class learning facilities. The list includes top schools such as Peking University and Tsinghua University in Beijing and Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou…
China will incorporate more ethical education contents for students in its national curriculum, and seek to develop more innovative minds, according to a new education reform document (中办国办印发《关于深化教育体制机制改革的意见》 ).
The document, jointly released by the General Office of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council, said an ethical education system guided by socialist core values must be put in place in all primary and middle schools, as well as higher education institutions.
Top universities seen as insufficiently rigorous in their ideological work are being shamed. Professors who speak out are punished. The government is sending observers to nearly 2,600 universities to monitor mandatory ideology classes, which include staples like “ Mao Zedong thought.”
“What they most want to see is whether what you’re saying is in line with the official demands on ideology and values,” said Xiao Wei, who will be sitting in on classes in Shanghai this fall as part of a group of some 100 professors examining the quality of ideological education in the city. “They also want to understand how effective [the classes] are,” said Mr. Xiao, a professor of Marxism at Shanghai’s elite Fudan University.
Already, the Central Leading Group for Comprehensively Increasing Reforms approved a proposal for building a “world-class university” and “world-class discipline” – as a “double first-class” – in 2015. A list of 42 universities and colleges to be developed into world-class educational institutions was announced this year, marking a milestone in “double first-class” construction.
One Big Question: How will Western academic institutions deal with this ideological resurgence? My money will be on an ostrich pose…
7. Will Beijing Tolerate The Short-term Pain A Real Environmental Crackdown Will Cause?
Will It Work? Maybe, if Beijing will allow the GDP growth rate to drop and if officials’ performance evaluations have a much higher weighting towards environmental measures and a lower weighting for GDP growth. But those are very big Ifs…
China’s Sweeping Pollution Crackdown Puts Chill on Economy – Caixin Global:
Authorities’ attempts to bring on board business owners like Liu to support their fight against air pollution is being undermined by the heavy-handed approach that inspectors are adopting in some areas. Inspectors are “going overboard,” ordering business closures for reasons not linked to pollution such as an expired business license, several small-business owners told Caixin. They are “gunning for favorable performance reviews at the expense of workers’ livelihoods” and don’t take into account the effect the sudden closures had on local economies, they said.
The city government of Tangshan, a steel hub about 180 km east of Beijing in Hebei province, said it is requiring steel producers to cut their production by half in a bid to reduce pollution levels, according to the official-run Tangshan Evening News. The measures became effective Monday.
How Big Is This? Gabriel Wildau, The Financial Times’ Shanghai Bureau Chief, commented on Twitter that this move means Tangshan will “furlough capacity worth 7.5% of nationwide total this winter to meet pollution targets”.
8. Australia Looking At New Laws To Combat Chinese Communist Influence
Comment: A US law is the model, but the US government rarely enforces it, especially against PRC-connected interests.
Attorney General George Brandis is planning a once-in-a-generation shake-up of the legal framework governing who can lawfully influence Australian politicians, amid fears of clandestine Chinese Communist Party influence over politics in this country.
Mr Brandis flew to Washington in July, shortly after a series of Fairfax Media reports on the issue of foreign interference, and was briefed by US national security officials about introducing US style “foreign agent” laws into Australia.
I would argue that the following essay by Jichang Lulu is an example of writing in the mode of New Sinology. It is an analysis of an issue involving contemporary China grounded in linguistic fluency, alert in particular to the beguiling mix of language, culture and politics in the People’s Republic. This form of analysis reflects a sensitivity to China’s allusion-rich literary language, an understanding of Leninist-Maoist political traditions, the nature of partyspeak (New China Newspeak), and a keen ear/eye for contemporary colloquial usage. It is the interweaving of these linguistic registers and the modes of thinking they reflect, as well as the politics that they serve, that allow writers like Jichang Lulu to share important insights into how contemporary China, in particular the party-state of the People’s Republic, may be better understood.
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Business, Economy And Trade
China Plans Closer Oversight of $304 Billion in State Company Funds – Bloomberg China will create a centralized financing company to oversee some $304 billion of funds held by the country’s state-owned enterprises’ finance units, people familiar with the matter said, allowing the government closer supervision of SOEs’ borrowing and investments. The plan, approved by the State Council or Cabinet, will increase the government’s ability to supervise the non-financial central SOE finance companies’ investments, giving the entity a fuller picture of how these companies are using funds, according to the people, who asked not to be named because the plans have not been made public.
Economic Watch: Nationwide negative list to spur foreign investment – Xinhua China will roll out a negative list for foreign investment, which has been tested in pilot free-trade zones. The negative list model, which states the sectors and businesses that are off limits to foreign investment, will be adopted nationwide as early as 2018.
Eight China cities step up housing tightening – Xinhua Since Friday, the second-tier cities of Xi’an, Chongqing, Nanchang, Nanning, Changsha, Guiyang, Shijiazhuang and Wuhan have tightened housing controls, with most banning home sales within two to three years after purchases. In Shijiazhuang, houses newly bought as of Sunday will be banned from being sold within five years.
Chinese Developers Plunge as Officials Tighten Housing Curbs – Bloomberg A Bloomberg Intelligence index of 22 developers tumbled 7.5 percent as of 1:50 p.m. on Monday, heading for its steepest drop in more than two years and taking some of the air out of valuations for stock market stars such as China Evergrande Group and Sunac China Holdings Ltd., which have climbed fivefold and fourfold, respectively, this year.
Chinese province inspects banks for illegal lending for real estate – sources – Reuters The Shaanxi office of China Banking Regulatory Commission including (CBRC) is targeting six areas of irregularities, including illegal financing for land purchases and real estate development projects, and loans borrowed to fund mortgage downpayments, the sources said.
Does China Play Fair- Economist Cover Story: Even as China’s achievements inspire awe, there is growing concern that the world will be dominated by an economy that does not play fair. Businesses feel threatened. Governments that have seen Brexit and the election of Mr Trump, worry about the effects of job losses and shrinking technological leadership. Yet if the outcome is to be good, they must all think clearly about the real nature of China’s challenge.
China Scrutiny Spurs Developer to Hit ‘Pause’ on Expansion – Bloomberg Country Garden Holdings Co. says it’s hitting the pause button on an international expansion amid Chinese government scrutiny of property acquisitions abroad, and is delaying investing in countries such as India.
As China Piles on Debt, Consumers Seek a Piece of the Action – The New York Times To be clear, most economists consider China’s consumer credit splurge to be a good thing. Chinese families are nowhere near the borrowing levels of spendthrift Americans, whose household debt is equal to more than three-quarters of the annual economic output of the United States. In China, that measure is still less than half.
A Missing Piece in China’s Economy: Consumer Credit Ratings – WSJ Chinese household debt is growing rapidly, outpacing broad credit growth every year since 2013 and reaching 38 trillion yuan ($5.7 trillion) by the end of the second quarter of this year. But household debt remains relatively low by global standards, at about 44% of gross domestic product, and the absence of a widely used standard of creditworthiness is keeping consumer borrowing from growing even faster, hampering access to credit for some 500 million potential borrowers.
China says growth of key debt ratio clearly slowing, stabilizing – Reuters The growth of China’s overall leverage ratio has been clearly slowing and is now stabilizing, the state planner said on Monday, days after S&P downgraded the country’s sovereign debt rating. China will focus on lowering leverage ratios among state-owned firms and winding down of “zombie firms” to reduce leverage ratios and control debt risks, the National Development and Reform Commission said in a statement on its website.
China stock regulator vows crackdown on capital market misbehavior – Reuters In a statement on Friday on its website, the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) said its chairman, Liu Shiyu made the comments at a recent internal meeting.
ICO Refund Issue Emerges as New Cryptocurrency Flashpoint – Caixin Global With refunds for initial coin offerings (ICOs) now underway, how much investors can recover has become the next flashpoint between them and cryptocurrency crowdfunders. Two weeks after outlawing ICOs, Shanghai authorities on Friday reported that 90% of refunds are complete. But the dust is far from settled. Some investors complained the refund process has been slow, while some took to the street and asked for more money to cover their losses.
Chinese group blocked by Trump announces UK chip-maker buyout | The Guardian Canyon Bridge Capital Partners’ all-cash offer for Imagination showed the buyout fund remained focused on investing in western chip-makers after its $1.3bn (£960m) deal to buy Lattice Semiconductor was blocked over US national security concerns.
China’s biggest steelmaker plans to boost capacity while Beijing seeks cut | South China Morning Post Baowu Steel aims to consolidate position by increasing output as government plans to reduce output take toll on smaller private firms
China puts US on notice over solar panel trade curbs ahead of Trump trip | South China Morning Post Beijing sent a tempered warning to Washington against trade curbs on the weekend after a US agency concluded that imports of Chinese solar panels had hurt two American manufacturers.
China’s Rail Firms Shake Up Personnel – Caixin Global Train-maker CRRC Corp. Ltd. has appointed Sun Yongcai as its new president, promoting him from his role as executive director. Meanwhile, the country’s national railway operator, China Railway Corp., has set up small reform committees in its 18 regional bureaus, a China Railway staffer told Caixin. The national railway operator has also recently completed a reshuffling of high-level personnel.
Politics And Law
天津原市长黄兴国一审被判有期徒刑十二年–今日头条–时政–首页 Comment: Former Acting Tianjin Party Secretary Huang Xingguo gets 12 years for corruption, relatively light sentence in part because he ratted out others, does not say who though
Fugitive Tycoon Guo Wengui Reportedly Dooms Bank Deal With Drunken Antics – Caixin Global Chinese fugitive billionaire Guo Wengui’s attempt to acquire a Japanese bank was dealt a final fatal blow after a limo company sued him and two other businessmen, claiming they had vomited in the vehicle during a drunken spree, an investigative magazine reported. Caixin has learned Guo made a trip to Tokyo in August 2016 and met with two business partners. In January, one of these partners — Capital Partners Securities Co. Ltd. — proposed acquiring the controlling stake in Tokyo-based Shinsei Bank, and Guo showed interest in the possibility, Caixin learned.
Former senior provincial political advisor investigated for graft – Xinhua Liu Shanqiao, former vice chairman of the People’s Political Consultative Conference of central China’s Hubei Province, is under investigation on suspicion of taking bribes, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate (SPP) announced Monday.
All the Presidents Are Men: China Is Getting Worse on Women in Power – WSJ Ahead of China’s 19th Party congress next month, when most positions on the Politburo standing committee will turn over—President Xi and Prime Minister Li Keqiang will stay on—the prospects for change are dim. Women have never made up more than 10% of the party’s Central Committee, from whose ranks the Politburo is drawn, writes Cheng Li, an expert on elite Chinese politics at the Brookings Institution. Only two women serve on the current 25-member Politburo. At least one is set to retire. And, notes Mr. Li, the most important pipeline for female replacements is empty; no woman serves as a party secretary of a province or province-level city.
Xinhua Insight: Anatomy of grassroots CPC cells – Xinhua “Some of my colleagues are surprised to know there is a Party committee within the company,” said Murray King, vice president of public affairs for the Shanghai Disney Resort. “The Party committee is a normal part of our business, a normal part of our operations, in fact it is a very helpful part,” he said. “It’s a source of knowledge and resources, which I think is very valuable for a successful business.” “I’m often pleasantly surprised to find some of our most talented people are Party members. I have to give credit to the Party committee because some really good ideas come from the Party committee, and some of our most dedicated employees are Party members,” King said.
“习近平在上海”①“上海是党的诞生地，要牢记历史使命”_浦江头条_澎湃新闻-The Paper 在习近平心中，坚定的理想信念是战胜一切艰难险阻的强大精神支柱和力量源泉。他在上海工作的7个月零4天，时时念兹在兹的一件大事，是如何把党的光荣传统发扬好、继承好，将党的建设新的伟大工程建设好、推进好。他多次与上海的干部说，这是一项光荣而神圣的使命。// Comment: Thepaper hagiographies (is that a word?) Xi’s time in Shanghai
聚焦少年审判 学者呼吁推进少年司法制度改革_政经频道_财新网 法官称，未成年人刑事审判存在关注被告人而忽视被害人的现象；学者认为，少年司法制度应进行总结反思
Supreme People’s Court gears up for 19th Party Congress | Supreme People’s Court Monitor As the days count down to the 19th Party Congress, all Party/government institutions are preparing for it, including the Supreme People’s Court (SPC). On 19 September, the SPC issued an emergency notice (pictured above), calling on the lower courts to strengthening law enforcement work to provide a good judicial environment for the holding of the 19th Party Congress.
Foreign And Defense Affairs
Nepal dreams of railway linking China to India | China Dialogue Kathmandu is at the centre of China and India’s dispute over the New Silk Road
China to push for greater cooperation on graft, terrorism at Interpol meeting – Reuters Beijing has tried for many years to enlist the help of foreign countries to arrest and deport back to China citizens it accuses of crimes including corruption and terrorism. The three Beijing-based sources, who are familiar with the planning for the Interpol meeting, said China is likely to make these two areas its focus for the general assembly.
Researcher on board Chinese Vessel medevaced by U.S. Coast Guard The Coast Guard says the man was on the Xue Long, about 15 nautical miles outside of Nome
Russia and China quietly build business bonds – FT $$ “The fact that the first large deal done by a Chinese company . . . is with Rosneft — arguably the closest Russian company to Mr Putin — shows the seriousness of the partnership push.” CEFC will buy the stake from a consortium controlled by mining company Glencore and the Qatar Investment Authority, restructuring a complex and opaque transaction last year that highlighted the difficulties for western groups investing in Russian companies targeted by sanctions.
China, Vietnam pledge to maintain border stability – Ministry of National Defense Military delegations from China and Vietnam attended the fourth high-level border meeting, with the two sides agreeing to maintain border stability and push bilateral ties. The two-day meeting was held in northwest Vietnam’s Lai Chau Province and southwest China’s Yunnan Province, starting Saturday.
Hit by Chinese Hackers Seeking Industrial Secrets, German Manufacturers Play Defense – WSJ In June 2016, a delegation led by German Chancellor Angela Merkel flew to Beijing for talks on the matter. While Chinese officials led by Premier Li Keqiang told Ms. Merkel that Beijing would protect German firms’ intellectual property in China, they didn’t agree to stop hacking. As Chinese attacks on U.S. companies have eased, Germany has become a bigger target, according to Nigel Inkster, senior adviser to the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London.
China, Singapore reaffirm military ties, but is the deal anything more than symbolic? | South China Morning Post Military sources told the South China Morning Post last week that Singapore might suspend its decades-long Starlight military training agreement with Taiwan, which has long been a thorn in Beijing’s side. Their comments came after Xinhua quoted Lee as telling Xi that the city state opposed Taiwanese independence and supported the one-China policy.
Doklam faceoff: China deployed more, standoff began earlier | The Indian Express Contrary to public perception that the border standoff between India and China at Doklam involved a small number of troops, the Chinese had posted more than 12,000 soldiers, 150 tanks and artillery guns opposite Sikkim at Phari Dzong in Chumbi Valley during the 73-day standoff, a new book has revealed. The book, Securing India The Modi Way: Pathankot, Surgical Strikes and More (Bloomsbury), written by Nitin A Gokhale, also contains Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) images of the site, which show that the standoff had actually started in the third week of May — it was made public by the Chinese on June 26.
Tech And Media
TV Association Rewrites Script on Big Celebrity Paychecks – Caixin Global In addition to capping actors’ salaries at 40% of a program’s total budget, the association said pay for leading roles shouldn’t exceed 70% of the total pay for all actors. If actors’ salaries exceed the 40% limit of a show’s budget, the program’s producers should provide an explanation to the association and other related industry associations, the group said.
教授:个性化资讯分发平台算法单一 低质量信息点击高|人工智能|新闻|兴趣_新浪科技_新浪网 Comment: People’s Daily launches its third recent attack on toutiao and algorithmic, personalized news…can’t get a much clearer signal that the propaganda department sees this as a threat to its ability to set the agenda, crackdown increasingly likely
This Startup Is Luring Top Talent With $3 Million Pay Packages – Bloomberg Beijing ByteDance Technology Co. is the brainchild of an entrepreneur named Zhang Yiming. The company is best known for a mobile app called Jinri Toutiao, or Today’s Headlines, which aggregates news and videos from hundreds of media outlets. In five years, the app has become one of the most popular news services anywhere, with 120 million daily users.
China pulls Vietnam border war movie from cinema holiday line-up at last minute | South China Morning Post Director Feng Xiaogang’s movie Youth, or Fanghua, was scheduled to be released across China on September 29 in time for the weeklong National Day holiday. But in a brief online statement on Sunday, Feng’s production house said the release date would be postponed as a result of “discussions with the film administration bureau and other relevant parties”.
68 Things You Cannot Say on China’s Internet – The New York Times They were issued by the China Netcasting Services Association, which includes as members more than 600 companies, including the official Xinhua News Agency, the social media giants Sina and Tencent, the dominant search engine Baidu and the news aggregator Jinri Toutiao. David Bandurski, an analyst and editor for the University of Hong Kong’s China Media Project, said the association’s rules created the illusion of industry consensus as the company’s acquiesced to what party officials call “self-discipline.”
As Baidu Retreats, Alibaba and Tencent Battle for O2O Dominance – Caixin Global It wasn’t long ago when Chinese tech entrepreneurs and investors scrambled into the online-to-offline market, pouring in billions of yuan to lure users into mushrooming mobile applications that allow them to hail a taxi, book a trip or order dinner via a few clicks. But fierce competition backed by heavy subsidy spending squeezed out many smaller players, leaving marketplaces to a few deep-pocketed leaders.
Tencent Puts Up Billboard for U.S. Advertisers – Caixin Global The company’s new U.S.-based sales team will target companies that want to reach the large numbers of Chinese tourists traveling to America. Tencent cited a report from the U.S. Travel Association saying Chinese tourists spent an estimated $35 billion in the country last year alone.
北京网信办罚款微博贴吧：对用户发布违规信息未尽到管理义务_10%公司_澎湃新闻-The Paper Comment: Weibo and Baidu Tieba fined for not preventing the dissemination of information in violation of the cybersecurity law
Society, Art, Sports, Culture And History
Video: Six Years Old, 16-Hour Workdays – the Making of a Child Star in China – Caixin Global Yunxi, who goes by her screen name Lara, is one of the hundreds of children searching for stardom who flock to Beijing during summer breaks. A whole industry has sprung up — with talent scouts, acting gurus, promotion teams and directors who charge parents money to cast their children — to search for China’s Shirley Temple. Yunxi’s father says he spent nearly 400,000 yuan ($60,940) in the first half of this year alone on costumes, entry fees to pageants and talent competitions and for producers to sign her up for their TV dramas and music videos.
OlymPicks: A Q&A With the Chinese Billionaire That Brought Hockey to the Mainland | the Beijinger Long before Zhou Yunjie became a billionaire businessman in China’s packaging industry, long before he spearheaded the deals that brought about the National Hockey League’s first big push into mainland China, and long before he met his hero, star player Bobby Orr, he was a scrappy young goalie with enough heart and stamina to stay in the game despite a throbbing injury.
LGBTQ people still being forced to undergo ‘therapy’ – Global Times Clinics advocating conversion therapy are also reportedly prolonging the treatment process to make more money, and are also avoiding notorious forms of treatment such as electro-shock therapy that can be used as evidence in court.
No More Online Anti-Islam Terms Allowed on Weibo – but Discussions Continue Anyway | What’s on Weibo Chinese authorities have recently blocked various Islam-related words invented by Chinese netizens. The ban comes after consecutive online controversies on the topic of Chinese Muslims and Islam in China; the tone of the discussions reportedly “undermines ethnic unity.”
Energy, Environment, Science And Health
Nuclear Experts Head to China to Test Experimental Reactors – Bloomberg China National Nuclear Power Co. this month announced a joint venture to build and operate a “traveling wave reactor” in Hebei province, designed by Bellevue, Washington-based TerraPower LLC, whose chairman is Microsoft Corp. founder Bill Gates. The development follows Canada’s SNC-Lavalin, which has agreed to build a new recycled-fuel plant with China National Nuclear Corp. and Shanghai Electric Group, and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which is working with the Shanghai Institute of Applied Physics on a salt-cooled system.
Agriculture And Rural Issues
China rolls out the red carpet to begin building its first Iowa farm – Des Moines Register China is eager to modernize the operations of its 260 million mostly small-scale farmers, with Iowa held up not only as a model but an ideal: In the words of one Chinese official, Iowa is “the place where the dream for modern farming began.” Iowa, meanwhile, craves ever more access to the Chinese market and its growing middle class. // Comment: In Hebei
One in three Chinese children faces an education apocalypse. An ambitious experiment hopes to save them | Science | AAAS Surveys by Rozelle’s team have found that more than half of eighth graders in poor rural areas in China have IQs below 90, leaving them struggling to keep up with the fast-paced official curriculum. A third or more of rural kids, he says, don’t complete junior high. Factoring in the 15% or so of urban kids who fall at the low end of IQ scores, Rozelle makes a stunning forecast: About 400 million future working-age Chinese, he says, “are in danger of becoming cognitively handicapped.”
China’s roving students are lured home – FT $$ The Shanghai-based China Europe International Business School (Ceibs) MBA course was ranked 11th best in the world by the Financial Times this year, up from 17th in 2016 and the highest of five Chinese schools in the top 100. It became the first Chinese institution to receive European Foundation for Management Development accreditation in 2004. Now 20 Chinese schools have achieved the standard, according to David Asch, EFMD’s director of quality services. “The west has had a good run with Chinese students for the last 15 to 20 years, but it’s going to come to an end,” Mr Asch says. “The jobs network is key.”
Books And Literature
Welcome to the LARB China Channel – China Channel It is in the spirit of Lu Xun that, on the anniversary of his birthday, we are launching a new digest for anyone interested in China, the Los Angeles Review of Books China Channel, a “magazine with a magazine” thanks to a seed grant from the Henry Luce Foundation and further support from the UCI Long US-China Institute, under the same umbrella as LARB‘s other independent channels.
北京8月份PM2.5值创新低 – 国内 – 新京报网 Beijing sees lowest average August PMI since 2013