The Sinocism China Newsletter 02.13.17-Did Trump Cave to Xi Jinping? New Twists in the Case of Abducted Billionaire Xiao Jinhua

The February 6th issue of the newsletter noted that an initial Trump-Xi call was imminent and that the Trump administration looked to be softening its stance towards the PRC. On February 10th The two had a 45 minute call and the official spin was that it was very positive (White House readout, Xinhua in English, CCTV in Chinese.

The phrase that got everyone’s attention was “President Trump agreed, at the request of President Xi, to honor our “one China” policy”. The official readouts (Hu in 2009, Xi in 2013) of Obama’s initial calls do not include an affirmation of the US One China Policy, so the claim that “they always say this” does not hold water. On the surface it look likes a comedown for Trump from his pre-inauguration talk about possibly abandoning the One China Policy, but a fair number of his proxies are arguing that the Chinese made concessions, as yet not leaked, and that there is flexibility and ambiguity in the Trumpian definition of “our One China Policy”.

Regardless, US-China relations under Trump no longer look to be on the precipice of a sharp descent into real nastiness. Do not however be too optimistic about the trajectory of the relationship. Trump’s USTR pick Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of Commerce pick Wilbur Ross have yet to be confirmed, and while it may look like Gary Cohn and other more “mainstream” people in the administration have so far blunted the more hawkish views of Steve Bannon and Peter Navarro (Axios calls this the “Confrontation vs conformists in the White House“), Trump campaigned hard on cracking down on trade with China. The fact is that the PRC is an abusive trading partner and the US does need to get much tougher with the country.

In addition to more trade friction, expect actions against PRC external propaganda operations in the US and a ramping up of operations in the South China Sea.

David B. Larter of The Navy Times reported yesterday that the “Navy is planning fresh challenges to China’s claims in the South China Sea”:

“The freedom of navigation operations, also known as FONOPS, could be carried out by ships with the San Diego-based Carl Vinson carrier strike group, which is in the Pacific Ocean heading toward the South China Sea, according to three defense officials who spoke to Navy Times on condition of anonymity to discuss operations in the planning phase.

The military’s plans likely call for sailing within 12 nautical miles of China’s newly built islands in the Spratly and/or Paracel islands, a move that would amount to a new challenge to Chinese maritime claims there that has raised tensions between Washington and Beijing in the recent past.

The plans are heading up the chain of command for approval by President Donald Trump, and set the stage for a transnational guessing game about what the Trump administration wants its Asia policy to be.“

Enjoy the calm while it lasts.

Today’s Links:

AnchorTHE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

1. U.S., China Coordinated Policy Reversal – WSJ White House officials declined to specify what if anything Mr. Trump got out of relenting on the One China policy. China’s Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang didn’t directly address a question about whether China had had to make any concessions in return… For Mr. Trump, it marked a significant retreat, but also presented an opportunity to press ahead with negotiations on economic and security issues that will be critical to his administration’s policy in the region

Related: Did Xi Just Outmaneuver Trump? | ChinaFile A ChinaFile Conversation

Related: New top U.S. diplomat plays central role in Trump’s China shift | Reuters The abrupt course adjustment, made public in a White House statement on Thursday after a phone call between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping, followed White House meetings this week involving Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the U.S. officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

Related: Confrontation vs conformists in the White House – Axios A big reason the first three weeks of the Trump presidency have been such a rollercoaster: the intense, daily competition between two very different world views in the West Wing — those who want radical confrontation at home and abroad, versus those who want to conform better to Washington and international norms. Hence, the wild swings from confrontation over a “One China” policy to total accommodation

Related: 惊爆中国解放军少将金一南内部谈特朗普 这个视频传疯了  Comment: video posted to Youtube of General Jin Yinan talking about Trump, talks about what a great opportunity it is to have Trump and America as the PRC’s enemy. Like I said above, enjoy the calm while it lasts

Related: Relief after Trump and Abe hit it off at summit-FT Mike Green, former senior director for Asia on George W Bush’s National Security Council, says Mr Trump’s summit with Mr Abe, his moderation on China and his relatively subdued joint statement with the Japanese leader on North Korea were “the first jab by the White House at a realistic foreign policy”. “Until now we’ve heard very reasonable things from [secretary of defence James] Mattis and [secretary of state Rex] Tillerson,” Mr Green says. “Now the president himself is saying the kind of things you would expect given the situation in Asia. Whether this lasts is something we’ll have to wait and see.”

Related: The Most Dangerous Man in Trump World? – POLITICO Magazine Peter Navarro, the head of Trump’s National Trade Council. But it would be a costly mistake to short sell his influence. He sports some establishment credentials—most notably, a Harvard Ph.D. in economics—but his views are quite radical. He may, in fact, be the loopiest member of Trump’s retinue.

Related: How Xi Jinping’s global ambitions could thrive as Trump turns inward | The Guardian Experts say Xi’s elevation to such a position will have delighted Beijing’s spin doctors, who have for years struggled – largely in vain – to boost the country’s soft power and its standing on the world stage. “They’re cracking open the baijiu,” said John Delury, a China expert from Yonsei University in Seoul, referring to China’s throat-scorching national tipple. Bill Bishop, the publisher of the influential Sinocism newsletter, said he believed Beijing was revelling in a once-inconceivable opportunity to contrast its “adult leadership” with the “deranged, ignoramus” one that had taken up residence in the White House: “It is an absolute gift from Trump, both from a short-term PR perspective, but also from a longer-term perspective.”

Related: Commerce Nominee Wilbur Ross Will Keep His Stake in Chinese-Government-Backed Company – WSJ

2. Employees of Missing Hong Kong Billionaire Are Barred From Leaving China – The New York Times In the months leading up to the conclave, held once every five years, the party puts stability at a premium, and Mr. Xiao, through his substantial holdings, is seen as having the potential to bring instability to China’s stock markets. Bill Bishop, who publishes the widely read Sinocism newsletter on Chinese politics, said that China’s leaders, including the president, Xi Jinping, and the Communist Party’s top antigraft enforcer, Wang Qishan, might see Mr. Xiao’s company as a “systemic threat to the stock market” in a year when stability is paramount. “It seems like a no-lose move for Wang and Xi,” Mr. Bishop said by email.  //  Comment: I also said “Mr. Xiao’s insider knowledge of the financial dealings of China’s most powerful families, may have overridden any concerns about violating Hong Kong’s autonomy.” Something big is brewing here, about 9 months until the 19th Party Congress, lots can happen before then, remember last week was the 5th anniversary of Wang Lijun’s flight to the US Consulate in Chengdu. It looks like this case might really be connected to the 2014 stock bubble and the 2015 crash…there were all those conspiracy theories at the time about manipulation and factional fighting. Nailing Xiao and some above him now would probably be good for Wang Qishan and his prospects for promotion to premier at the 19th Party Congress…he knows more about the financial system than anyone else in the Politburo

Related: Beijing Newspaper Investigated for Links to Tycoon – Caixin Global The head of a state-backed securities industry newspaper is under investigation for links to controversial financial tycoon Xiao Jianhua, several sources close to the matter told Caixin. Xie Zhenjiang, 63, has been removed from his post as the president of Beijing-based Securities Daily and chairman of Securities Daily Media Co., the newspaper’s business arm listed on the New Third Board for small- and medium-sized enterprises, sources said. Xie has been expelled from the Communist Party for serious disciplinary violations, they added.

Related: A Video, a Wheelchair, a Suitcase: Mystery of Vanished Tycoon Deepens – The New York Times Xiao Jianhua, one of China’s wealthiest and most politically connected financiers, whose disappearance last month sent a chill through Hong Kong and the political class in Beijing, does not appear to be fine. In the early hours of Jan. 27, he was taken out of the Four Seasons Hotel in Hong Kong in a wheelchair, his head covered by a sheet or a blanket, according to people who have seen or been briefed on video footage captured by security cameras in the hotel.

Related: 传肖建华全盘招供太平洋证券上市黑幕 或涉大批隐蔽贪官太子党 | 博聞社 Comment: Overseas Chinese media running with lots of speculation about the Xiao case

Related: 肖投媒宣 中宣部副部长名列其榜金融势力无孔不入 Comment: Overseas Chinese media running with lots of speculation about the Xiao case

Related: Mingjing Interview Guo Wengui – YouTube Comment, subtitled interview with Guo Wengui AKA Miles Kwok from an undisclosed location overseas. Kwok is very charming and funny, says lots of interesting things, no idea how much of what he says is true. He has it out for Fu Zhenghua, says he has hijacked investigations from Xi and Wang Qishan and Meng Jianzhu, which seems hard to believe. At about the 45 minute mark he discusses the rumors of what Ling Jihua’s brother Ling Wancheng brought with him when he fled to the US, says the “nuclear secrets” not actually about China’s nuclear forces but rather salacious videos and financial information about senior officials and their families. An entertaining interview, it is fascinating to watch him talk,  there is supposed to be at least one more segment, have not seen it yet Here is Bloomberg in 2015 on Kowk–Death Threats and Dawn Raids: Welcome to China’s Anti-Graft Drive

Related: Disgraced Chinese ‘spiritual guru’ to the stars dies in custody | Reuters Wang Lin died on Friday after complications from a serious autoimmune disorder led to multiple organ failure, the Intermediate People’s Court in Fuzhou in the eastern province of Jiangxi said in a statement. An exponent of the ancient spiritual practice of qigong, who claimed to be able to cure cancer and conjure snakes from thin air, Wang shot to prominence in 2013 after photographs of him posing with top celebrities and businessmen were splashed in newspapers, along with claims he profited from corrupt and superstitious officials who believed he could help advance their careers.  //  Comment: Seems like coincidental timing, wonder if Jack Ma will send any condolences

Related: 王朔酷评王林事件:中国精英智商很低缺乏安全感 | 博聞社 Comment: Biting comments on Wang Lin and his rich and powerful “followers” by Wang Shuo

3. Xi orders leading officials to fight special privilege – China Daily Xi made the remarks when addressing the opening session of a workshop on the Sixth Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee. The workshop at the Party School of the CPC Central Committee was attended by senior provincial and ministerial officials. // Comment: Top 11:30 of 2.13.17 CCTV Evening News on this meeting 习近平在省部级主要领导干部学习贯彻十八届六中全会精神专题研讨班开班式上发表重要讲话 

Related: 必须旗帜鲜明讲政治–观点–人民网 讲政治不是老调重弹,更不是“文革”中搞的极左政治,而是有很强的现实针对性。改革开放以来,党内有些同志认为政治不那么重要了,有的党员、干部由政治上模糊变成政治上糊涂,自觉不自觉犯政治错误。有的党组织政治功能弱化,个人主义、分散主义、自由主义、好人主义等不同程度滋生蔓延

4. CCDI inspections reveal weakening of Party leadership, promotion of corrupt officials – Xinhua China’s top disciplinary body has discovered the weakening of Party leadership and promotion of corrupt officials during inspections of four provincial-level regions, according to a statement released Monday. The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) of the Communist Party of China (CPC) kicked off a new round of inspections last November, which covered Beijing and Chongqing municipalities, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region and Gansu Province. All the four regions had been inspected previously. 十八届中央第十一轮巡视已公布4个省区市巡视”回头看”反馈情况—中央纪委监察部网站

Related: 中央第十一巡视组向北京市委反馈巡视”回头看”情况—中央纪委监察部网站    Comment: CCDI takes another whack at Beijing in report on latest inspection, Party Secretary Guo Jinlong soon to be Gone Jinlong…Will Cai Qi replace him?

5. China mulls radical output cuts, port coal ban in war on smog – document | Reuters China is considering forcing steel and aluminum producers to cut more output, banning coal in one of the country’s top ports and shutting some fertilizer and drug plants as Beijing intensifies its war on smog, a draft policy document shows. The Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) has proposed the measures in the document seen by Reuters. If implemented, they would be some of the most radical steps so far to tackle air quality in the country’s most polluted cities.

Related: Smog and mirrors? China’s steel capacity cuts were fake, report says. – The Washington Post Faced with global condemnation for flooding world markets with cheap steel, China announced last year it had implemented ambitious cuts in steel capacity. But a new report by Greenpeace East Asia and Chinese consultancy Custeel says that number was largely smoke and mirrors. Many of the plants China says it closed down were already idle, while production was restarted elsewhere and brand new plants opened.

6. Follow the Money » The Dangerous Myth That China “Needs” $2.7 Trillion in Reserve-Brad Setser The BoP data shows a reserve outflow of a bit more than $440 billion in 2016. That is significant. But I suspect that much of the outflow that led to the fall actually was the state actors. The build up of foreign assets in the banks, loans from the state banks to the world and easily controllable portfolio outflows from large institutions likely accounted for about $250 billion of the total fall in reserves. This leaves the true fall in the total foreign assets of China’s state sector at more like $200 billion. Still big, but not quite as big. Set that debate aside though. The reason for concern about China is the rapid pace of the reserve decline, not the risk that China is about to run out of reserves. China might conclude it doesn’t want to continue to finance outflows with reserves, in which case its currency would depreciate until the trade surplus was large enough to finance the outflow.

Related: Head of Foreign Exchange Watchdog Vows to Strengthen Fight Against Capital Flight – Caixin Global “Foreign exchange regulators will strengthen the supervision and fight against illicit practices,” said Pan Gongsheng, director of the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE). These included “fraudulent corporate outbound investments, false profit remittances, obtaining foreign currency under forged trade pretenses, pooling quotas of others to purchase or sell foreign money, illegal buying or selling of foreign exchange, and moving assets overseas through fake trade or investment deals,” Pan said…“We will not close windows that are already open,” he said in the interview. “Foreign exchange management policies will not regress. … (It’s) even less likely that we will return to the old path of capital control.”

7. Fanya Metal Exchange: When a government-backed scheme failed, China’s middle-class started confronting police and risking jail to recoup billions lost — Quartz Before her imprisonment, the 30-year-old saleswoman was among a group of investors planning a protest outside the headquarters of China’s top securities regulator in Beijing. They had all lost significant amounts of money, in some cases their life savings, by investing in the Fanya Metal Exchange—what turned out to be one of China’s most notorious financial scams in recent years. Police detained Qian and others on charges of “gathering crowds to disturb public order.” The detention periods ranged from a month to a year.

Related: Jiedaibao’s Woes Highlight Growing Risks of P2P Lending – Caixin Global Only 31 years old, Chen Wei has led a colorful life — a soldier in Tibet, a construction worker in Qatar and a sailor on the Atlantic Ocean. Now he’s toiling as a courier in Beijing to earn enough money to sue Renrenxing Technology Co. Ltd., the operator of Jiedaibao, one of China’s most popular peer-to-peer (P2P) online lending platforms, and the borrowers he claims owe him 427,300 yuan ($62,100). The tale of how a young adventurer ended up in this legal and financial quagmire illustrates yet again how regulators are failing to keep up with the fast-changing world of internet finance and how the desire to turn a quick profit often ends in tears

8. China’s Battle Over Virtual Wallets Intensifies – Caixin At stake is the world’s largest mobile payment market, involving 35 trillion yuan ($5.1 trillion) in transactions in the third quarter, according to data from the central bank. Transactions handled by nonbank third-party payment providers surged 106% year-on-year to 26 trillion yuan during the same period. The gains were driven by the growing popularity of Quick Response (QR) code payments, a function that allows shoppers to pay by scanning a black-and-white bar code with their phones.

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AnchorBUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

SEC.gov | SEC Charges Chinese Citizens Who Reaped Massive Profits From Insider Trading on Comcast-Dreamworks Acquisition The SEC alleges that in the weeks leading up to the news of the acquisition, Shaohua (Michael) Yin amassed more than $56 million of DreamWorks stock in the U.S. brokerage accounts of five Chinese nationals, including his elderly parents.  DreamWorks stock price rose 47.3% once the acquisition was announced…Yin, a partner at Summitview Capital Management Ltd., a Hong Kong-based private equity firm, allegedly did not trade in DreamWorks stock through his own account but instead traded through five accounts from addresses in Beijing and Palo Alto and on a computer that also accessed Yin’s email accounts. // Comment: The complaint makes for interesting reading. and an electronic roadmap of how not to do this…PDF 

Tackling Moral Hazard in China’s Financial System – Paulson Institute Zhu Ning’s short policy memo explores and explains why Beijing’s affection for GDP growth targets, in particular, will inevitably lead to excessive government support and guarantees for unsound investments. He elaborates why he believes that many of China’s current economic problems, not least overcapacity and debt, have their roots in the moral hazard associated with the Chinese government’s implicit guarantee against insolvency. His memo proposes six policy measures that, in his view, could help to eliminate, or at least alleviate, this underlying moral hazard problem in China’s financial system.

China May Lift Fiscal Revenue Growth Target for First Time in Five Years – Caixin Global The 5% target for this year’s national fiscal revenue increase, if approved next month, would be higher than 2016’s goal of 3% and will mark the first time the government has raised the figure since 2012. Growing inflationary pressures in the country since late last year may have provided conditions for such an increase, since the lion’s share of China’s tax revenues is generated from indirect taxes that are typically based on prices. And as prices go up, so does government income from these taxes.

China, the Party-Corporate Complex – The New York Times OpEd by Yi-Zheng Lian Hyper control, interventionism, currency manipulation — no, China is not a market economy. But it’s worse than that: The Chinese Communist Party (C.C.P.) has systematically infiltrated China’s expanding private sector and now operates inside more than half of all nonstate firms; it can manipulate or even control these companies, especially bigger ones, and some foreign ones, too. The modern Chinese economy is a party-corporate conglomerate.

China’s Zombie Province Shows Trouble With Its Bond Market – Bloomberg Nowhere are China’s rusted-out industries worse than in Liaoning, a province that’s slumped into outright recession and where officials have admitted to years of inflating fiscal revenue data. Liaoning is also a showcase for how long a road China faces to create a world-class bond market. For all its problems, the district pays little more than its peers to borrow. On the corporate side, authorities’ reluctance to let more insolvent enterprises go under means a limited role for the market, with financiers willing to restructure their debts on the sidelines.

Tighter property loans squeeze homebuyers – China Daily Although no official circular has demanded banks raise interest rates for homebuyers, banks in Beijing, Tianjin and Guangzhou have reduced discounts on benchmark rates by some 5 percent since the beginning of this month, according to a report in National Business Daily.

AnchorPOLITICS AND LAW *

People’s Daily highlights democracy in 19th CPC national congress election – Xinhua The People’s Daily, flagship newspaper of the Communist Party of China (CPC), will run a commentary Tuesday calling for quality and efficient intra-Party democracy in the election of delegates to the 19th National Congress of the CPC. The commentary will say that both intra-Party democracy and strict observation of electoral rules must be ensured, noting that such efforts are important to ensuring delegates elected are representative. 人民日报评论员:在党的十九大代表选举中提高党内民主质量和实效 

Beijing graft-buster pats itself on back for muzzling outspoken tycoon ‘Big Cannon’ | South China Morning Post Party discipline watchdog says investigation into Ren Zhiqiang, who criticised president’s comments on media loyalty, was one of its highlights last year // Comment: Ren got off easy, by virtue of his relationships

十九大前罕“议政” 宋平露面引关注 _中国-多维新闻网 舆论走向也出现两极化,一方面评论认为,宋平“身体健康,多做些工作”的表述不妥,有“干政”的含义。另一方反之,认为宋平此举意在助力中共当局全面废除“老人干政”现象,告诫退休官员如果想做事,就多参与“公益工作”。 在国际舆论和坊间认识中,中共“政治老人”的活跃难免会导致“老人干政”的局面,可能构成干扰阻碍,可能有助于现任领导集体稳定政局和推进施政。但需要注意的是,这也可能仅仅是一种正常的个人活动,无关政治。 // Song Ping makes an appearance, may or may not mean something for runup to 19th Party Congress…

The Who’s Who of China’s Leading Small Groups – Mercator Institute for China Studies

Foreign passports offer little protection for China’s elite-FT 

AnchorFOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

China opposes DPRK’s missile test-launch – Xinhua China was opposed to the test-launch of a ballistic missile by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), which was in violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions, a Foreign Ministry spokesperson said Monday. China calls for all parties concerned to exercise restraint and jointly maintain stability in the region, spokesperson Geng Shuang told a routine press briefing.

With friends like these: China’s awkward position after North Korea’s missile test – The Washington Post In an editorial Monday, the nationalist Global Times newspaper called North Korea’s nuclear weapon and ballistic missile program a “severe annoyance for Northeast Asia,” but also said Pyongyang faces a “very real” military threat, as well as harsh sanctions.  “We can imagine the level of its upset and rage,” it said. “If Washington keeps cracking down on Pyongyang’s nuclear development while turning a blind eye to North Korea’s concerns, their current confrontation will develop into an absurd struggle.”

China firmly opposes U.S. endorsement of Japan’s illegal claim on Diaoyu islands – Xinhua “China expressed grave concern at and firm opposition to the statements [concerning the Diaoyu islands] made by Japan and the United States,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said at a daily press briefing. “We firmly oppose that Japan asked for the endorsement of the United States on its illegal territorial claim in the name of the U.S.-Japan security treaty.” A joint U.S.-Japan statement issued over the weekend after Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in Washington D.C. affirmed that Article 5 of the U.S.-Japan security treaty covered the Diaoyu islands.

‘It was a provocative act’: PLA pilot describes encounter with foreign military jet | South China Morning Post A PLA bomber pilot has described an eight-minute “threatening” encounter with a foreign military jet over the Scarborough Shoal in the South China Sea last July. Captain Liu Rui, 38, said he was flying his H-6K bomber on a routine patrol when he came within 10 metres of the aircraft, CCTV reported on Monday. He did not reveal to which nation the jet belonged// Comment: The CCTV report 《面对面》专访南海巡航飞行员刘锐 :“战神”的故事 is an interesting look at the pilot, nice propaganda effort, the discussion of the close encounter starts at about minute 12

Chinese-Indonesian Governor’s Struggles Worry Some in His Ethnic Group – The New York Times The governorship is widely seen as a steppingstone to the presidency, and Islamist efforts to stop Mr. Basuki, a Christian, led to anti-Basuki rallies in the capital that were among the largest protests in recent memory. Though the demonstrations were largely nonviolent, protesters called for Mr. Basuki to be voted down, imprisoned — even killed. Mr. Basuki, 50, has risen higher than any other Chinese-Indonesian politician since the nation began transitioning to democracy in 1998.

China’s North Korea Calculus Under Trump – Carnegie-Tsinghua Center – Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Paul Haenle spoke with Tong Zhao, a fellow in Carnegie’s Nuclear Policy Program based at the Carnegie–Tsinghua Center for Global Policy, about how North Korea and other regional security challenges will fit into the new context of U.S.-China relations under the Trump administration.

Australia uneasy over Chinese influence in PNG amid increasing infrastructure investment – Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Australia’s defence and diplomatic community are privately expressing unease about China’s growing influence in Papua New Guinea, where the Chinese Government is investing billions in infrastructure and business development.

Our position clear, we are for freedom of navigation through South China Sea: Government- The New Indian Express With nearly half of India’s trade passing through the disputed the South China Sea, the government today said New Delhi supports freedom of navigation and overflight through the disputed waters based on the principles of international laws

Fake News about Chinese Nuclear Weapons – All Things Nuclear A video recently discovered on a Chinese internet service appears to show a new Chinese road-mobile missile making a turn at an intersection in the city of Daqing. The discovery generated sensational claims about changes in Chinese nuclear strategy. However, a careful search of Chinese sources shows that none of those claims can be substantiated. Some are obvious distortions.

Manila Predicts Beijing Will Build Base On Scarborough Shoal-USNI This week the Philippine defense secretary predicted China would start building an artificial island on the bones of Scarborough Shoal. If unopposed, China would likely attempt to build an installation like the several bases Beijing has constructed in the Spratly Island chain to the south of Scarborough, Delfin Lorenzana said in a Tuesday interview with AFP.

The Chinese Embassy Told Durham University’s Debating Society Not To Let This Former Miss World Contestant Speak At A Debate – BuzzFeed News

Ren Xinmin – Wikipedia – He died February 13, 2017 Ren Xinmin (Chinese: 任新民; pinyin: Rèn Xīnmín; Wade–Giles: Jen Hsin-Min) was a Chinese specialist in astronautics and liquid rocket engine technology. Ren was the technical director of the Long March 1 rocket and chief designer of Chinese storable propellant rocket engine.[1] Besides, he was also the chief designer for Long March 3 launch vehicle, Dong Fang Hong I, Fengyun, and SJ(Shijian) series satellites // 最后一位“中国航天四老”任新民逝世

AnchorTECH AND MEDIA *

Signs From China Suggest A Good Deal For Hollywood on Imports | China Film Insider As Chinese officials and industry representatives from the US prepare to re-open negotiations around the film quota, signs from multiple stakeholders on the Chinese side indicate they’re preparing for more competition from Hollywood.

Huawei Sold More Phones but at Less Profit — The Information $$ The world’s third-largest smartphone maker behind Samsung and Apple generated $2 billion in operating profit from its consumer business group, which consists of smartphones and other gadgets, according to people briefed on the company’s finances. That was smaller than the roughly $2.2 billion profit the business unit had earned in 2015, one of the people said. The 2016 profit also fell short of the unit’s internal target of $2.5 billion.

Chinese Acquisitions Undercut Taiwan, U.S. Semiconductor Industry Edge – Jamestown

Han Han’s Race Back To The ’90s Is A Sentimental Journey | China Film Insider

China’s Weibo eclipses rival Twitter’s market capitalisation-FT

Once poverty-stricken, China’s “Taobao villages” have found a lifeline making trinkets for the internet — Quartz

AnchorSOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

China aims to relocate 3.4 mln people in 2017 to tackle poverty – Xinhua China has vowed to lift all of its poor out of poverty by 2020. Alleviating poverty through relocation is one aspect of the strategy. By the end of 2016, there were 45 million people living in poverty, many in areas without roads, clean drinking water or power.

As soldier returns from India, China village offers him a new home : India Today The former Chinese soldier who lived in India for 53 years finally returned home on Saturday both to a hero’s welcome, and an offer to make a new home for himself and his Indian family.

Jail for Masterminds of ‘Left-Behind Fortune’ Pyramid Scheme | Sixth Tone Swindlers made millions based on story of decades-old valuables hidden by Kuomintang after Chinese civil war

AnchorENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

China Moves Ahead with Inland Nuclear Power Plants – Caixin Global China has “basically determined” the sites for its future inland nuclear power plants, which may begin construction before the close of the country’s 13th Five-Year Plan in 2020, said Wang Yiren, deputy director of the China Atomic Energy Authority, in an interview with state media on Monday. He said that construction has already begun on three inland nuclear plants, located in the interior provinces of Hunan, Hubei and Jiangx

‘We had to sue’: the five lawyers taking on China’s authorities over smog – The Guardian In an unprecedented legal case, a group of Chinese lawyers have charged the governments of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei with failing to protect their citizens from air pollution, which is linked to a third of all deaths in the country

Beijing joins list of mainland cities reporting bird flu cases in humans | South China Morning Post

AnchorEDUCATION *

Revealed: life inside China’s ‘Red Army’ schools | South China Morning Post Patriotic songs and lessons on the nation’s revolutionary past on the curriculum at more than 200 of the schools across the country

AnchorBEIJING *

Beijing bans higher emission vehicles from road – Xinhua Starting from Feb. 15, light-duty gasoline-powered cars that fail to meet the National Emission Standard III will be banned from entering Beijing’s fifth ring on weekdays. Violators will be fined 100 yuan (14.50 U.S. dollars) for every four hours that they drive on the road. Substandard cars will also be taken off the road through annual inspections or spot checks.

AnchorJOBS AND EVENTS *

Sidwell Friends School: Upper School » Chinese Studies » John Fisher Zeidman ’79 Memorial Lecture Eric Liu Wednesday, February 22, 2017, free, open to the public

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