The Sinocism China Newsletter For 04.19.13

In what looks to be a propaganda own goal Chinese state media now says that Xi Jinping did not take a cab ride in Beijing, after news of the taxi trip took the Chinese Internet by storm for much of Thursday.

The idea that Xi would take a taxi incognito fits with his “man of the people” image and has historical precedent. The term used for his journey–微服私访–specifically refers to the tradition of the emperor or other high officials going out in disguise among the common people.

The New York Times’ Chris Buckley reports on the mess in Tale of China’s Leader in a Taxicab Is Retracted:

Taxis in China’s capital are notoriously hard to flag down, but chauffeur-driven officials rarely need a ride, and the chief of the Communist Party even less often. So when Ta Kung Pao, a Hong Kong newspaper loyal to Beijing, published a detailed report about a $4.40 taxi ride that Mr. Xi and a colleague took in early March, chatting with the driver, Guo Lixin, about pollution and other woes, Chinese news Web sites celebrated the story as an example of Mr. Xi’s refreshingly down-to-earth style.

By the end of the day, however, the state-run news media, which had initially given credence to the story, abruptly reversed course, and the tale was in shreds. The newspaper withdrew the report as false, and it and the news agency Xinhua were pilloried online, leaving China to ask a bizarre question: What does it mean when feel-good propaganda cannot be trusted even on its own fanciful terms?…

Xinhua, citing city transportation authorities and the Hong Kong newspaper, at first confirmed the story via a bulletin on Sina Weibo. But a later Xinhua bulletin said the story was false, and Ta Kung Pao removed the report from its Web site.

“Checking has established that this was a false report, and we feel deeply distressed and extremely regretful about this,” the newspaper said in a statement on its Web site. “Such a major case of false news should absolutely never have happened.”

Ta Kung Pao has made other mistakes in reporting on Chinese politics this year. In January the newspaper claimed that the trial of Bo Xilai was imminent, sending reporters scrambling to Guiyang to cover the event, which of course did not happen.

But reporting on the activities of Xi Jinping is different. It is hard to believe that Ta Kung Pao ran this story, written by senior journalists with an accompanying interactive web feature and column by Deng Yuwen, without at least confirming with authoritative sources that the story was true, if not actually being fed the “scoop” by propaganda officials in Beijing.

I have no idea what is going on but will offer the following guesses:

1. Xi did take a cab ride but as the story spread Thursday Xi and/or officials close to him decided it looked too staged and so ordered the propaganda authorities to change course;

2. Xi did not take the cab ride and propaganda authorities made it up as part of the “man of the people” image campaign and then Xi and/or officials close to him ordered it denied, either because it went too far or as part of something bigger involving the propaganda system’s relationship with the new leadership;

3. Someone is using Ta Kung Pao to embarrass the propaganda authorities and/or Xi Jinping.

If you have other guesses or insights please let me know.

There is no word yet on what may happen to the cab driver who claims he took Xi for a ride. Whatever is going on, state media’s credibility has once again been driven into a ditch.

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT

China May Widen Yuan Trading Band Within 72 Hours: UBS – Bloomberg China will probably widen the yuan’s trading band within the next three days after central bank Deputy Governor Yi Gang signaled policy makers will loosen control over the currency, according to UBS AG. (UBSN) China may expand the range that the yuan is allowed to trade within during the Group of 20 nations meetings in Washington this week, UBS analysts Manik Narain and Geoffrey Yu wrote in a note.

China confirms 87 H7N9 cases, 17 deaths – Xinhua | English.news.cn During the 24-hour period ending at 5 p.m. on Thursday, China confirmed five new cases of human H7N9 avian influenza, including one in Shanghai, one in Jiangsu, two in Zhejiang and one in Henan. The National Health and Family Planning Commission said in its daily update on H7N9 cases that a total of 87 H7N9 cases have been reported in China, including 17 that have ended in death. // Investigators Search for Origin of Flu Strain – NYTimes.com A Chinese expert on the disease, Feng Zijian, the director of the health emergency center at the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said Wednesday that an estimated 40 percent of people infected with the virus said they never had contact with poultry. Mr. Hartl concurred with Mr. Feng about that statistic. “It is not clear all cases so far have had contact with poultry,” Mr. Hartl said. Because it seemed possible that the virus originated in animals other than poultry, the international investigating team would be casting a wide net for possible sources, Mr. Hartl said.

China may Soon Start Clean-up in Interbank Bond Market-Caijing several arrests, sounds like could get big, involves not just executives but also officials. interesting timing?// The detention of two bank weights in China due to murky off-sheet deals in the interbank market has propped expectations that the country will soon start overhauling the market which has developed at an unconventional speed for nearly two years. Zou Yu, a Shanghai-based fund manager at Wanjia Asset Management, which oversees three bond funds, was detained and under investigation for alleged holdings of others’ bonds without transferring ownership in the interbank market, Chinese media said. Fixed-income executive director at CITIC Securities Yang Hui was taken away by authorities after being accused of illegal deals regarding Class C bond custody, also a grey area in interbank market trading. Investment insiders see the kind of bond trusteeship as a disguised leverage, which is frequently used by banks and fund managers to skirt regulations that restrict the development of the pledged-style repos, which are in full compliance with regulations.//  公安部介入债市扫黑风暴 全面升级为刑事调查_网易财经 PSB now investigating criminal behavior in debt markets as the detentions that started a few days ago 目前尚无权威信息显示有哪些机构人士的被查已涉及刑事范畴,但一份稽查报告已然勾勒出债市交易中所渗入的私利及其输送链条。稽查案例显示,利益输送链条上遍布横跨多种机构类型的利益共同体;知情人士称公安部经侦局介入债市调查。 // 稽查风暴笼罩债市 代持机构恐慌抛盘_金融频道_财新网 业内人士透露,上海证监局要求各券商统计其代持量;券商、基金对手中代持的债券进行抛盘,银行出手接盘 //  券商合规部人士:5部委联手彻查 3位债券大佬落马-财经网 “固收风暴”的起因为一级半市场的寻租行为,不仅牵涉到金融圈更牵涉到部分官员。据他透露,此次牵头的部门包括公安部、审计署、证监会、银监会、人民银行。能调动如此多部委参与排查的绝非一般高层。//  万家邹昱或已被移交到北京 由“固收专案组”负责调查-财经网 此前邹昱是被上海市经济犯罪侦查总队带走的,目前已经被移交到了北京,由专门的“固收专案组”负责。他表示,由于此次对固定收益圈的调查是全方位、全市场调查,所以由央行牵头,银监会、证监会、公安机构等部门联动成立专案组 // 解构债市灰色利益共同体_财经频道_一财网 知情人士透露,目前该案已经由公安部经济犯罪侦查局直接参与和主导,侦查范围涉及银行、信托、证券和基金等银行间市场所有参与主体。目前尚无权威信息显示有哪些机构人士的被查已涉及刑事范畴,但本报记者昨天看到的一份稽查报告已然勾勒出债市交易中所渗入的私利及其输送链条。 这份报告中提到的案例显示,银行间债市存在着以上下级、亲属、同学和老同事等裙带关系相结合的利益共同体,横跨多种金融机构类型。这些人员利用债市一对一撮合的交易方式以及监管上的盲区,操纵机构自营账户和资产管理账户,轻则调节利润、重则搞利益输送,达到非法侵占的目的。// Banker Jumps to Death in Beijing’s Finance Street – Caixin no reason to believe related to debt market cleanup, but sure to lead to some pundits to say scandals sometimes an indicator financial crash near…pic of his body lying by building first hit Weibo Wednesday// In an apparent suicide, a high-level executive of a state-owned investment company leapt to his death in downtown Beijing. Wang Shiqiang, 60-year-old chairman of the board of supervisors for China Jianyin Investment Securities Co., appeared to have jumped to his death on the afternoon of April 16 from the top of the office tower that houses China Jianyin. In an issued statement, China Jianyin said the suicide was due to personal issues in Wang’s life, refuting online speculation that the death was tied to heavy losses incurred by gold investments. It is yet unclear how much risk exposure China Jianyin has to gold futures.

How Fast Is China’s Slowdown Coming, and What Should Beijing Do About It? | ChinaFile Conversation–Patrick Chovanec, Barry Naughton, Damien Ma– Lurking in the background of the current numbers are the broader changes of which all Chinese economists are aware: the Chinese economy is ending its super-high growth phase; labor force growth has essentially ended; and China is facing a new era in which the underlying growth potential of the economy is less. This change is overall not a bad thing. The reason the high growth phase is ending is because China has graduated early. Increasingly a middle income country, China has higher wages and a more diverse domestic demand pattern. These changes reflect a higher standard of living and an economy with broader capabilities. // Jim Chanos April 5 2013 Presentation–China: The Edifice Complex (PDF)

Reforming China’s big beasts | beyondbrics Is China’s leadership about to heed calls to unleash competitive spirits among the state owned enterprises?Analysts at BoA-Merrill have come up with a different view from most by answering this with a big ‘Yes’. This week has brought a series of lengthy articles on SOEs in The People’s Daily, China’s Communist Party tip-sheet. Expert interpreters of the gnomic language typical in the Daily have been scrabbling over the text to decipher what conclusions may be drawn. // Can China Adapt? by Zhang Jun – Project Syndicate China is entering a new phase of development, and institutional reform in key areas – particularly the public sector, income distribution, land ownership, the household registration system, and the financial sector – has become imperative. Obviously, reform is more difficult today than it was when China began its economic transition. State-owned enterprises, for example, currently account for 40% of total corporate assets, but only 2% of all firms, which implies significant policy influence. But China seems unlikely to go the way of, say, Russia. On the contrary, the accumulation of wealth in the Chinese government’s hands should enhance its ability to press ahead with reform. Institutional flexibility has been the key to China’s economic transition and rapid growth over the last three decades, and it is vitally important that the Chinese government remains neutral and avoids being captured by interest groups. In short, the authorities must ensure that the system remains open to change in the long run. Successful implementation of another round of far-reaching reform depends on it // but what if already captured by interest groups, as some argue?

North Korea Tones Down Rhetoric Against U.S. – NYTimes.com Security analysts in South Korea and the United States expressed cautious optimism this week that the shift in tone, however understated, is a sign that after weeks of escalating threats that raised fears of armed conflict, both sides might be ready to calm tensions. “I wouldn’t say the crisis has passed, but maybe we’re in a less dangerous phase,” said Evans J. R. Revere, a former State Department expert on Asia who is now senior director of the Albright Stonebridge Group, a consulting firm that specializes in Korea, China and Japan. “The possibility of a serious miscalculation is not as great as a few days ago.” //  Clapper Explains Spy Agencies Differ on North Korea – NYTimes.com The nation’s top intelligence official said Thursday that a one-paragraph assessment about North Korea’s ability to arm a nuclear missile was mistakenly declassified by the Pentagon’s intelligence agency, an inadvertent disclosure that revealed competing views on the country within the United States’ spy agencies. // Inside the Ring: North Korea war strategy – Washington Times A senior House Republican is questioning Secretary of State John F. Kerry’s recent offer to China to trade U.S. missile defense upgrades for help in pressing North Korea to give up its nuclear weapons. Rep. Mike Rogers, Alabama Republican and chairman of the House Armed Services subcommittee on strategic forces, expressed his concerns in a letter sent Monday to Mr. Kerry. “Many of our Asian allies have watched with consternation the success with which Russia has obtained concessions from the Obama administration about U.S. missile defenses that NATO allies have agreed to host,” Mr. Rogers stated. “No doubt, many Asian allies wondered when China would begin to seek similar concessions.”

INTERVIEW/ Hu Shuli: China still has not compiled a common dream – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun For decades, Hu Shuli, the Editor-in-Chief of Caixin Media, has kept a close eye on developments in China and its rise to become the world’s second-largest economy.Hu has been described as the most dangerous woman in China because of her investigative reporting that exposed corruption among high-ranking officials, her criticism of the government, and the spread of information through new technology used by media outlets she has helped to create.In an interview with The Asahi Shimbun, she was asked about the difficult challenges facing China under Xi.

Carrier of navy’s pride[1]|chinadaily.com.cn Liaoning carrier all over official news last night and today// Zhao Shengnan shares her experience on aircraft carrier Liaoning ahead of navy’s 64th anniversary on April 23. Zhang Zheng got his first close-up of an aircraft carrier in Portsmouth, England, in 2002. A decade later, he was named captain of China’s first carrier, Liaoning. “A big country cannot do without aircraft carriers,” said Zhang, 44. // 中国军网_舰员来自全国29个省区市、13个民族,来自海军潜艇、水面舰艇、航空兵、陆战队、岸防五大兵种—— 辽宁舰·中国舰 10年前,前往英国三军联合指挥与参谋学院留学的张峥,在朴茨茅斯军港第一次见到了航空母舰。 10年后,作为中国首艘航空母舰辽宁舰舰长,他率领战友驾驭着辽宁舰进驻青岛母港。 一个人的梦想,一支军队的梦想,一个国家的梦想,就这样变成了现实! // [视频]航母军港首次亮相 辽宁舰年内远航_新闻频道_央视网 央视网消息(新闻联播):我国首艘航母辽宁舰2月27日停靠青岛某军港以来,一直按计划进行各项试验和训练,年内将择机远航。目前,航母军港已具备靠泊保障能力,各项试验进展顺利。// 中国军网_中国航母的寻常一日 A normal day in life on the Liaoning //  走近中国首艘航母——辽宁舰–新华社 4月18日,靠泊在青岛某军港的中国首艘航母辽宁舰内,官兵们正在各自的战位上,娴熟地操作着装备,口令声此起彼伏……“我们就是要通过严格的训练,实现有生命的人和无生命的武器相互拥有,从而增强驾驭新装备的本领。”舰长张峥说。// 辽宁舰年内择机远航 3000舱室曾让官兵迷失方向_资讯频道_凤凰网 Liaoning aircraft carrier in port at Qingdao since 2.27, preparing for a “far ocean” journey later this year

 

BUSINESS AND ECONOMY

China’s Home Prices Gain as Guangzhou Rises Most in 2 Years – Bloomberg Major cities also led gains in existing home prices. They rose 9.1 percent in Beijing last month from a year ago, the most among the 70 cities. Existing prices increased 7.2 percent in Shanghai, 7.5 percent in Guangzhou and 6.2 percent in Shenzhen. “The Chinese property sector is a bubble,” Tao Dong, head of Asia economics excluding Japan at Credit Suisse Group AG, told Bloomberg Television in Hong Kong today. “We do have a problem. But a bubble today doesn’t mean that the bubble has to go down tomorrow. It might last for a while.”

Insight: China’s 2020 consumer is in a town you’ve never heard of | Reuters Her “spend it if you’ve got it” attitude, some economists argue, may help unlock the surge in consumption that China urgently needs to rebalance its economy over the next decade, ending an era of lopsided, investment driven growth. “This 18-35 group, for a variety of reasons, are much more optimistic and more open to risk, because they haven’t yet experienced bad times at all,” says Benjamin Cavender associate principal analyst with China Market Research. “They tend to have high disposable income relative to their earning power, and they tend not to be saving heavily.” This generational change in mindset, harnessed to the sheer number of people growing more prosperous in once poor provinces throughout the country – such as Guo’s native Henan – is recasting China’s economic landscape: both the composition of growth, and its geography, are about to change significantly.

Vale’s Ship Enters Chinese Port, Unclear if Ban Was Lifted – Caixin Brazilian iron ore giant Vale had one of its ships dock in an eastern Chinese port, despite reports that the operation may have violated China’s maritime regulations. Vale’s giant ore ships, which roughly measure the length of three soccer fields, were banned by Chinese authorities in January 2012 by the Ministry of Transport in a circular which prohibits certain large ships from entering Chinese ports. According to shipping data provider Lloyd’s List Intelligence, Vale Malaysia arrived from Subic Bay in the Philippines at the Liangyugang Port in Jiangsu Province on April 14 and left the morning of April 17. The ship unloaded 230,000 tons of cargo in China.

 

POLITICS AND LAW

Ex-railways chief Liu Zhijun meddled with projects worth 175b yuan, court hears | South China Morning Post The Beijing News reported yesterday that Liu colluded with Shanxi businesswoman Ding Shumiao from the end of 2007 and granted railway projects to 23 state-owned firms Ding chose. Ding and her underlings consequently illegally obtained about 3.2 billion yuan, with about 2.4 billion yuan going to Ding alone. Five of Ding’s underlings, including her daughter Hou Junxia , stood trial at Beijing’s No2 Intermediate People’s Court on Wednesday charged with illegal business operation for their role as “middlemen” in the bidding process.

Central gov’t to spend less on travels, vehicles, receptions – Xinhua | English.news.cn The central government will spend less on overseas visits, vehicles and receptions this year amid China’s frugality efforts, authorities said on Thursday.The central government will use 7.97 billion yuan (1.28 billion U.S. dollars) on such items in 2013, down 126 million yuan from its actual spending in 2012, the Ministry of Finance (MOF) said. // 人民日报-2013年中央本级“三公经费”预算亮相 只减不增 开了个好头(热点解读) // 人民日报-“三公开支9000亿”系捕风捉影(求证·探寻喧哗背后的真相) //  人民日报-中央本级三公经费进一步压缩 2013年预算比上年执行数减少1.26亿元

中央80余部门住房预算超200亿 购房补贴60亿_新闻_腾讯网 新京报讯 从昨日公布的80余中央部门预算支出看,住房保障支出超过200亿元,其中公积金发放占大头,达到近140亿元;提租补贴7亿元左右;购房补贴60亿元左右。

重庆警察的哥纠纷引发打砸堵路 5人袭警被刑拘_资讯频道_凤凰网 新华网重庆4月17日专电(记者王晓磊)记者17日从重庆市公安局获悉,4月15日凌晨重庆渝 中区大坪因纠纷引发打砸车辆事件后,重庆公安机关已对两名涉事民警采取禁闭措施,并立案开展进一步调查。其中一名派出所所长已被免职。涉嫌违法犯罪人员被依法处理。

港媒放风温家宝放弃撰写自传辩诬_多维新闻网【多维新闻】近日,《纽约时报》记者张大卫(David Barboza)因十八大前揭露温家宝家族隐秘财产而一举夺得美国新闻界至高荣誉普利策奖。此事不仅诱发了中国外交部的再次声讨,更有港媒随后披露已经退休的温家宝如何“约法四章”保持低调远离公众视线,其中包括“不打算撰写回忆录”等内容。该报道似有意暗指温家宝已放弃辩白机会,此事大可就此戛然而止。早前3月初两会召开,有海外媒体放风“晚节不保”的温家宝将在退休后亲自操刀自传,以为自己家族财产悬案辩白。//HK media speculating that Wen Jiabao will not publish a memoir, giving up best chance to refute David Barboza’s reporting

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS

China’s Anti-Carrier Missile Now Opposite Taiwan, Flynn Says – Bloomberg The Chinese military has deployed its new anti-ship ballistic missile along its southern coast facing Taiwan, the Pentagon’s top military intelligence officer said today. The missile, designated the DF-21D, is one of a “growing number of conventionally armed” new weapons China is deploying to the region, adding to more than 1,200 short-range missiles opposite the island democracy, U.S. Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn, the Defense Intelligence Agency director, said in a statement to the Senate Armed Services Committee. Flynn’s reference to the DF-21D follows one made by U.S. Navy Admiral Samuel Locklear, head of the U.S. Pacific Command, in congressional testimony on April 9. He highlighted the “initial deployment of a new anti-ship missile that we believe is designed to target U.S. aircraft carriers.”

China calls on Japan to reduce jet scrambles | Reuters ”We all know that when it comes to the Diaoyu Islands issue Japan has been continuously taking provocative actions to raise tensions. This is the root cause of the present very tense situation over the islands,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying told a daily news briefing. Japan, she said, should instead “show more sincerity and take practical steps to work hard with China to find a way to appropriately manage and resolve the problem through dialogue, talks and consultations. This would be best for both countries.”

Trilateral summit postponed over China’s hesitation – The Japan News A trilateral summit meeting between Japan, China and South Korea, which was scheduled to be held in Seoul next month, has been postponed apparently because of China’s unwillingness to participate, it was learned Wednesday.

Xi meets with Nepalese political party leader – Xinhua | English.news.cn Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Puspa Kamal Dahal Prachanda, chairman of the Unified Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist), on Thursday and pledged to boost cooperation.

Yuanization Writ Large: Daily NK Confirms the Rush to RMB « SINO-NK On April 17, 2013, the Seoul-based Daily NK released a new video (or here, on Facebook). Produced in February this year, the film shows both official markets (장마당/jangmadang) and unofficial alley markets (골목장/golmokjang) in and around Hyesan, a major border city in Yangkang Province. The film clearly shows not only the public sale of South Korean products, a source of fascination for domestic South Korean readers of Daily NK and other websites like it, but more importantly that the overwhelming majority of products on sale in the markets are priced not in North Korean Won but in Chinese Yuan, and that most customers pay in Renminbi, too.

南方周末 – “我本来就怀疑美国搞生物武器” 戴旭:我掌握的资料没必要告诉你 近几年来,以张召忠、罗援、戴旭为代表的一批高级军官在舆论中频频发言,已经成为中国观点市场上的一道景观,民间将他们统称为“鹰派”。谈到戴旭的学术,戴旭的朋友倪乐雄教授说:“戴旭读书不多,聪明,悟性高,是个难得的人才。”“军队学者在学术功底上差了些,论据上也有很多欠缺,和复旦等学校还是不能比的。”而对于处事原则,戴旭说“自己信奉对等原则,别人说我狂徒,自己当然要回击骂回去”。他的理由是《亮剑》中李云龙也爱说脏话。// 关于《南方周末》未经戴旭同意发表访谈文章的声明_戴旭_新浪博客 最后谈到了我那条微博,谈到美国媒体质疑我的关于禽流感是美国生物武器的说法。我说:微博中我并没有直指美国,而是说M国。但他们自动对号入座。而且,我这样说绝不是一点根据没有的,如果他们看看2008年《北京日报》关于基因武器的简单介绍,及其引述的《纽约时报》透露就可以明白:美国早在2001年久开始研制基因武器了。那篇文章中就提到使用“动物兵”的问题,就提到基因生物武器会引发巨大的心理效果。我说那些质疑者如果多一些这方面的知识,就不会凭感觉大喊大叫了。但是,《南方周末》今天发表的文章不说我这些话,只说“我掌握的资料没必要告诉你”。//Col Dai Xu not happy about an interview Southern Weekend ran, takes to his blog to say they published it without his permission. in the interview Col. Dai again says SARS a US biological weapon, has evidence but does not to disclose it…

The 2013 TIME 100| Full List | TIME.com Xi Jinping, Peng Liyuan, Ren Zhengfei, Li Na, Kai-fu Lee, Wang Shu make the list // getting big play online here

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN

Li Ka-Shing Port Workers Widen Protests After New Wage Offer – Bloomberg Hundreds of port workers at Li Ka- shing’s Hong Kong terminals surrounded his Cheung Kong Center headquarters in the city’s business district after rejecting a pay raise aimed at ending a three-week strike.

China Mobile: Taiwan hangs up | beyondbrics Since 2009, state-owned telecom China Mobile had been trying to get regulatory approval to buy 12 per cent of Taiwan’s Far EasTone operator, in what was the first agreement by a Chinese group to invest in a Taiwanese one. The problem: In 2009, Taiwan didn’t let Chinese groups invest in its core telcos. The two had hoped that might change, but it hasn’t. So, as of Thursday, the deal is officially dead – at least until Taiwan liberalises more, says China Mobile.

 

TECH AND MEDIA

No joy for Yahoo China as e-mail service to close |Economy |chinadaily.com.cn Yahoo China announced on Thursday it will shut down its e-mail service by Aug 19, another sign of the brand’s shrinking presence in the Chinese market. The company, part of Internet giant Yahoo, has been run by China’s e-commerce leader Alibaba since 2005 after the two firms shook hands on a $1 billion deal that saw Yahoo given 40 percent of then little-known Alibaba’s stock.Closing Yahoo Mail, one of the earliest e-mail service providers in China, will leave the brand with only its web portal business in the China market. Yahoo China told users on Thursday morning that they have to register a mailbox with AliCloud, a core business unit under Alibaba, to make sure their e-mails and other information will be kept instead of being deleted when Yahoo Mail ceases its operations.

China’s Internet speed averages 3.14 MBps: survey – Xinhua | English.news.cn The average Internet connection speed in China stood at 3.14 megabytes per second (MBps) during the first quarter of this year, according to survey results released Thursday. Shanghai topped the list with an average connection speed of 4.7 MBps, followed by Jiangsu, Beijing, Fujian and Tianjin, according to a report compiled by Qihoo 360 Technology Co., an Internet security service provider

Succession at Huawei Offers Glimpse Into Secretive Firm – NYTimes.com Kevin Wang, an analyst at IHS in Shanghai, said the details of Huawei’s succession process were, not surprisingly, shrouded in secrecy. Mr. Ren, the founder, has not said when he plans to retire, Mr. Wang said, and there is no guarantee he will choose one of the three candidates now vying to succeed him. Another unknown is what Mr. Ren’s two children, who also work for Huawei, might do. Mr. Ren’s daughter, Cathy Meng, is Huawei’s chief financial officer. A son, Ren Ping, works for a subsidiary that provides hotel and ticket reservations and trade show support.

Yodo1 is Growing: $5 Million in New Funding to Meet Game Developer Demand and Expand Our Platform | Yodo1Yodo1 (www.yodo1.com), a leading publisher of Western smartphone games for China’s 300 million+ iOS/Android market, has successfully raised $5 million in Series A funding. The funding will be used to meet incessant and continued demand from non-Chinese indie developers avid to enter the world’s largest mobile game market. This round was led by SingTel Innov8, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singapore-based SingTel Group, with additional funding from original investor Chang You Fund. This announcement comes as Yodo1 reported 25 million active Chinese players of its many popular iOS and Android games, including Defiant Development’s Ski Safari, XMG’s Powder Monkeys, HandyGames’ Clouds & Sheep, and Robot Entertainment’s Hero Academy.

Chinese State Media: 60% of Consumers Are Starting To Think Apple Sucks-TechInAsia– And while many have scoffed at the effectiveness of such a campaign, the People’s Daily is claiming impressive results. In a report from today’s paper, the outlet says that nearly 60 percent of the public has lowered its opinion of Apple products. It also says that 54.1 percent of Chinese aren’t satisfied with Apple’s after-sales service.  We’ve compiled some of the paper’s survey results into the charts below, but it’s probably worth mentioning how this survey was conducted. According to the paper, the People’s Daily Strong Nation web forum in collaboration with the China Mainland Marketing Research Co. surveyed 2,824 “ordinary people” across 28 Chinese cities using a phone system. With that said, some of the questions seem to have been a bit leading. For example, it appears that respondents were not even given the option of saying that their opinion of Apple had increased when responding to the first question

China’s Spielberg Calls Out Censors During Awards Ceremony | Tea Leaf Nation It is ironic yet befitting. “In the past 20 years, every China director faced a great torment,” said director Feng Xiaogang, who was called China’s Spielberg by Newsweek, “and that torment is [beep].”The censored word, as anyone reading Feng’s lips can surmise, is “censorship.”

Chinese Online Retailer Aims to Go Public in U.S., Raise Nearly $90 Mln -Caijing  LightInTheBox Holding Co., Ltd, a global online retail company in China, is planning to go public in the U.S., which is expected to lead another wave of IPOs among Chinese companies following hard-hit market confidence for more than a year amid worries over financial problems and corporate structures.   The Chinese online retail company which has applied for the listing on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) under the symbol “LITB”, is planning to raise USD 86.25million, said the company in its F-1 file submitted to the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) Thursday.

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

Where the World’s Poorest People Live – Real Time Economics – WSJ  Sub-Saharan Africa is the only region in the world in which the total number of poor people has increased, more than doubling to 414 million in 2010 from three decades earlier. The rate of extreme poverty dropped to 48% in 2010 from 51% in 1981. But the tiny improvement compared with other regions meant that 34% of the world’s extreme-poor population came from Sub-Saharan Africa in 2010. In 1981, it was 11%.   China, meanwhile, has gone from 43% of the extreme poor to just 13% over that time period. India, despite substantial improvement in its extreme poverty rate, had 33% of the world’s extreme poor in 2010, up from 22% three decades earlier.

Chinese amateur photography animation – video | Art and design | guardian.co.uk An edited version of a short film created by Chinese animator Lei Lei from thousands of negatives found at a recycling zone in Beijing and saved from destruction by artist Thomas Sauvin. The pictures are taken by amateur photographers between mid-1980s and the mid-2000s

Negative views: collection of camera film captures changing face of China | World news | guardian.co.uk Beijing-based French artist Thomas Sauvin has amassed more than 500,000 negatives from Chinese amateur photographers

China Responds to Gun-Control Failure : The New Yorker For any Chinese critic of the United States, though, the news was as sweet as waking up to a snow day: “All the Senate of that country ever does is spend taxpayers’ money on sacrificing the interests of the American people in order to protect the interests of the guys in charge.… What did you expect?” Chinese nationalists assumed that campaign finance was to blame for this, and they cited the result as a reason to ease off the criticism of corrupt Communist Party officials: “Some dumb folks in China think ours is the only country where people care only about money.… In fact, there are immoral people everywhere who care only about money.” But it would be a mistake to assume that everyone in China is pro gun control. On the contrary, in a nation that has growing political discontent, and zero private gun ownership, one often hears snickering asides these days that a few guns on the street might do some good.

The Hot New Immigration Destinations for China’s Wealthy – China Real Time Report – WSJ Unimpressed with the U.S., shut out of Canada, not deep-pocketed enough for Australia and spooked by Cyprus, mainland China’s wealthy are exploring unlikely destinations for immigration, including Portugal and the small Caribbean nation of St. Kitts and Nevis. Dubai-based Range Developments recently toured China and Hong Kong, seeking investors for its Park Hyatt development in St. Kitts. Range is selling individual $400,000 shares and is quick to highlight the investment’s most attractive return: A passport with visa-free access to most of Europe and other former British colonies at no extra cost.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT AND HEALTH

China Plan to Complete Climate Change Law Draft Within Two Years – Bloomberg China plans to draw on the experience of seven regional carbon markets as it drafts new national legislation in one or two years, according to the country’s lead climate negotiator. The nation, the biggest emitter of greenhouse gases linked to global warming, will “actively promote” the legislation, Xie Zhenhua, vice chairman at the National Development and Reform Commission, said yesterday in Beijing. “Shanghai and Shenzhen are trying to set rules for carbon trading,” providing expertise for the nation, he said.

China’s toxic harvest: Consumers flock to imported food | Marketplace.org One of Valazza’s sales clerks feeds the day’s catch through a money counter. Valazza’s shop, Feidan, saw a 30 percent increase in revenue last year. Imported food is an $18 billion business in China, thanks to consumers like Zhang Qi, a 33-year-old lawyer who browses the aisles with his three year-old daughter. ”With imported food, if the label says it’s organic, I trust that,” says Zhang, “Food made in China — especially children’s food — is often labeled organic, but it’s easy to fake that. So we’re sticking with imported food, organic or not.” And that’s good news for American companies like Organic Valley, which started exporting milk to China three years ago. CEO George Siemon says his consumers in China aren’t just looking for the organic seal.

Closer Look: Why Idea to Raise Water Bills Is All Wet – Caixin A recent remark by the chairman of a major investor and operator of water projects in the country that tariffs should be increased has triggered public debate about the country’s management of the resource.  Speaking at a recent industry forum, Wang Wenke of China Water Investment Co. (CWIC) said he strongly supported increasing the tariffs by at least ten times, to up to 40 yuan per ton. Wang’s words caused a torrent of discussion on the Net, partly because of the background of his company. CWIC is owned by the central government, mainly by the Ministry of Water Resources and state-owned China Power Construction Corp.

25亿再融资核查期后问题频发 湖北宜化隐瞒子公司污染事件? | 每经网 核心提示: 25亿元再融资的环保核查期刚过,湖北宜化化工股份有限公司下属子公司青海宜化化工有限责任公司连续出现污染事故,并被环保部门整改及约谈。

 

FOOD AND TRAVEL

成都航空一机组成员违规盲降 3名飞行员遭停飞_新闻_腾讯网 pilot training issues at Chengdu Airlines? 3 suspended for improper landing// 一份未向公众公开的民航电报披露,成都航空股份有限公司(下简称“成都航空”),因涉及一起“机组低于标准落地的严重违章事件”,目前正在接受民航西南地区管理局的调查。 该份电报显示,4月5日,成都航空A319/B-6229型飞机,执行EU2229成都-南宁航班任务,在该次航班实施着落前,南宁机场气象条件并不满足起降标准,管制部门多次提醒并提出备降和等待建议的情况下,机长仍坚持试降,最终使用自动驾驶仪在南宁机场05号跑道着陆。

 

BEIJING

民企圈地垄断北京60%路边停车位 曾涉巨额行贿|顺达|民企|停车位_新浪财经_新浪网 fun corruption in car parking business in Beijing. is there any city in the world in which there is not corruption in parking?// “停车问题可能是现在北京交通问题里面最难、最复杂,也最需要治理的一个问题。”4月12日,北京市交通委主任刘小明透露,“北京交通委正牵头制订停车设施建设和管理的三年行动计划,具体落实停车设施的建设、运营、管理方面的问题。”公开资料显示,截至2012年3月,北京机动车保有量约504万辆。但与之相对应的是停车位的紧缺,4月9日,北京市交通局公布的数据显示,北京市现有备案停车位1523280个,其中临时占道停车场(即路边停车场)41199个。对北京来说,停车难一直存在。再次被推到风口浪尖,是缘于有媒体曝光民营企业京联顺达掌控北京60%(近3万个)有合法备案的路边停车位。

 

BOOKS AND LITERATURE

Book Market Reports We’re very pleased to announce that Paper Republic has partnered with China Book Business Report and Shanghai Eastern Book Data to begin producing monthly reports on the Chinese book market. The reports consist of bestseller lists (general and by category, both overall and for newly-published books), general market analysis, and rankings of Chinese publishing houses

 

JOBS AND EVENTS

Intern with The Economic Observer The Economic Observer is looking for an intern to contribute to the English-language website of the influential Chinese-language weekly paper.We’re seeking a native-English speaker with knowledge of Chinese politics and economics, excellent writing and editing skills, and enthusiasm to pitch and produce their own stories. The position is based in Beijing near the Andingmen subway stop on Line 2.

Hollywood’s China Syndrome-Capital M Beijing Event Friday, April 19, 4pm–From James Bond to Transformers, Kung Fu Panda to the AMC cinema franchise, China is all over Hollywood. In celebration of the Beijing Film Festival, our panel of industry experts takes a look at the impact of the second-largest box office market in the world on Hollywood, financially and creatively.Panelists, each representing a different viewpoint, share their own experience of the China-Hollywood relationship, from  financing to creative impact to the shifting market focus in Hollywood. A conversation with Clifford Coonan, China Correspondent of ‘Variety’ Magazine Peter Shiao, CEO of Orb Media Group, Max Michael, United Talent Agency & Shan Dongbing of Le Vision Pictures.

Emerging China » 4-26 Mixer: sE Electronics Microphone Pioneer Talk On Friday, April 26th, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., Angelvest, The Council of American States in China and Emerging China will hold a mixer. The event is supported by E8 Resources. During the mixer, there will be a thirty-minute talk given by Siwei Zou, a very talented classical musician from Shanghai, telling his amazing story of building a global Chinese brand in microphones. His company, sE Electronics is one theworld’s leading manufacturers of old-school, hand crafted microphones. Siwei and his American partners moved away from an OEM model early in their business evolution and were extremely successful. Date/Time: 6 – 8 p.m., Friday April 26, 2013 Venue: Yu Bar, Top floor of Shanghai Marriott Hotel Luwan,99 Jiangbin Road (near Hentong Lu) Phone: 021 5318 8888
地点: 地萬豪大酒店 28-29樓“玉”酒吧, 江滨路99号(打浦路到底) 电话:021 5318 8888

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