Official Reports on Kim-Xi Meeting; Central Committee For Deepening Overall Reform Meets; RMB Strength; US-China Trade; China #MeToo Activist Speaks; Wu Xiaohui Admits Guilt

Beijing officially announced that Kim Jung Un and his wife had made an unofficial visit, after he he had left for home.

So is there no daylight between China and North Korea going into his summits with South Korea and the US?

Given Kim’s sense of betrayal over China’s support for tough sanctions what did he get from this trip? Is this the end of Chinese support for any intensification of the “maximum pressure” sanctions campaign, so long as he doesn’t test again? Or will China now try to reduce the pressure?

The coverage was extensive, he got a lot of face time with Xi, and the general messaging seems to be that the errant junior ally has returned to the correct path. Xi was shown speaking to him confidently and without notes, and listening but not writing anything down while Kim spoke. Kim was shown reading prepared remarks and studiously taking notes while Xi spoke.

The propaganda makes it look like a tributary bromance is budding.

Thanks for reading.


The Essential Eight

1. Official Confirmation Of Kim-Xi Beijing Meeting

The official release from Xinhua is exceedingly long, in China and in English

Xi Jinping, Kim Jong Un hold talks in Beijing - Xinhua:

Xi said the China-DPRK traditional friendship, established and cultivated meticulously by the elder generations of leaders of both parties and both countries, was the precious wealth of both sides.

Sharing common ideals and beliefs as well as profound revolutionary friendship, the elder generations of leaders of the two countries trusted and supported each other, and wrote a fine story in the history of international relations, said Xi.

He said several generations of the leaders of China and the DPRK have maintained close exchanges and paid frequent calls on each other like relatives.

The two parties and countries have supported each other and coordinated with each other during long-term practices, making great contributions to the development of the socialist cause...

Xi made four proposals concerning the development of China-DPRK relations:

Firstly, continue giving play to the guiding role of high-level exchanges;

Secondly, make full play of the time-tested valuable practices of strategic communication;

Thirdly, actively advance peaceful development;

Fourthly, cement the popular will foundation for China-DPRK friendship

The original Chinese from Xinhua--习近平同金正恩举行会谈

The 14 minute CCTV News report has lots of interesting scenes 习近平同金正恩举行会谈 

The official video is also on Youtube:

Kim-Xi meeting presents a new challenge for Trump on North Korea - The Washington Post:

The message to the United States: any moves on North Korea must go through Xi.

“Beijing is reasserting itself and looking to shape the agenda for the upcoming summits,” said Adam Mount, a senior fellow and director of the Defense Posture Project at the Federation of American Scientists.

“Divisions between Beijing and Pyongyang were a major asset to Trump’s pressure campaign,” he said, adding that renewed ties would weaken “Trump’s hand in negotiations and diminishes further the effectiveness of U.S. military threats.”

Ni Lexiong, a military expert at the Shanghai University of Political Science and Law, said Kim was using conflict between China and the U.S. to “obtain benefits from both sides.”

Kim Il Sung made 11 visits, Kim Jong Il made 8 visits to China. Several of these visits were also "unofficial"--A History of Visits by North Korean Leaders to China - Caixin Global

Kim Jong-un wife’s fashion sense a hit with China’s public | South China Morning Post:

North Korean first lady Ri Sol-ju wins plaudits from social media users who compare her to popular South Korean celebrities

North Korea Is Firing Up a Reactor. Why That Could Upset Trump’s Talks With Kim. - The New York Times:

The new reactor could be a central issue in the Trump-Kim talks, if the goal, as the United States insists, is complete denuclearization. Even if Mr. Kim agrees to a freeze on nuclear and missile testing, he would still be able to accumulate more bomb fuel for a larger arsenal as long as the negotiations dragged on.

Trump says sanctions are hurting the North Korean economy. But in some ways it appears stable. - The Washington Post:

The value of the North Korean currency, the won, has been steady, according to those reports. So, too, the prices for basics such as rice and corn. The price of gasoline spiked in the fall, but it has been falling in recent months. New construction projects continued to pop up, as least through January, according to satellite photography; the lights at night in Pyongyang and the border with China appeared relatively brighter, although the country as a whole was growing less so.


2. First Meeting Of Central Committee For Deepening Overall Reform

It was previously a leading group, now upgraded in the massive restructuring plan introduced at the NPC.

Xi presides over 1st meeting of central committee for deepening overall reform - Xinhua:

Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, presided over the first meeting of the central committee for deepening overall reform Wednesday.

The launch of deepened reform of the Party and state institutions marks a new stage of deepening reform in all areas, said Xi, also Chinese president, chairman of the Central Military Commission, and head of the central committee for deepening overall reform.

The CCTV Evening News report is 11 minutes, just after the 14 minute report of Kim's visit.--习近平主持召开中央全面深化改革委员会第一次会议强调 加强和改善党对全面深化改革统筹领导 紧密结合深化机构改革推动改革工作_CCTV

Lots of reforms underway, all with the goal of keeping the Party in power and turning the CP-led PRC into a global superpower...

Some of the outcomes:

China to set up a new financial court in Shanghai: state media - Reuters:

China will set up a new court in Shanghai dedicated to handling financial cases

China's top leadership approves new asset management regulation: state media - Reuters:

The radio report said the officials said new rules should offer unified standards for regulatory oversight and offer equal market access and supervision but did not offer further details, including what the new rules will call for.

The officials also approved new rules on non-financial sector’s investment in financial companies, the report said without elaborating further.


3. More On US-China Trade Scuffle

If Trump's goal is to force China to scrap its vision for its future economy then there is no easy or conflict-free solution...The US may be releasing a list today.

Trump Targets China’s Push to Make Its Economy High-Tech - Bloomberg:

"Targeting ‘Made in China 2025’ is a much bigger deal for China than tariffs on steel or washing machines," said Louis Kuijs, chief Asia economist at Oxford Economics in Hong Kong, who previously worked for the World Bank in China. "This is about the future and impacts one of the key ambitions China has set for itself. It would increase the probability of serious friction."

The Trade Issue That Most Divides U.S. and China Isn’t Tariffs - The New York Times:

“We are three years into the implementation of Made in China 2025, and we will keep going,” Miao Wei, China’s minister of industry and information technology, said on Monday, the last day of a three-day economic policy forum in the Chinese capital.

Trump Administration Seeks Freer Hand for U.S. Companies in China - WSJ $$:

China signaled that it has no short-term plans to ease rules limiting foreign auto makers to a maximum 50% stake in passenger car manufacturing operations here, despite calls by the U.S. to open its market.

China’s industry minister Miao Wei told business executives at the China Development Forum that the lifting of the ownership cap would come gradually—first with commercial vehicles, then passenger vehicles, a person familiar with the matter said. Mr. Miao didn’t mention specific timelines, the person said.

People's Daily says the US sparking a trade war is dangerous "economic violence"--人民日报刊文:挑起贸易战是危险的经济暴力行为_新闻_腾讯网 

Li: Use dialogue to address friction - China Daily:

Premier Li Keqiang called on the United States to work with China in solving trade friction through dialogue and negotiations, but China is fully prepared to respond to any possible trade war.

Li reiterated China's stance facing a possible trade war between the two countries for a second consecutive day when he met with a U.S. congressional delegation headed by Senator Steve Daines in Beijing on Tuesday.

Top legislator calls on China, U.S. to handle bilateral ties from strategic height - Xinhua:

China's top legislator Li Zhanshu on Wednesday called on China and the United States to view and handle bilateral ties from a strategic height and an overall perspective to ensure their development goes along the right track.

Li, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), made the remarks while meeting with a U.S. congress delegation, led by U.S. senator Steve Daines.

Liu Xiaoming, PRC Ambassador to the UK, writes a Financial Times OpEd--Europe and China must stand together against protectionism - FT $$:

The UK and Europe have been advocates of trade liberalisation and firm supporters of the multilateral system of trade. The leaders of the UK, France and Germany have expressed their concerns over US protectionism and stressed that WTO rules should be the basis for solving trade disputes.

This clearly points to shared interests for China and Europe in safeguarding the multilateral trade regime.

China preparing list of retaliatory tariffs on U.S. imports - Reuters:

China will soon announce a list of retaliatory tariffs on United States exports to China to counter an expected announcement from the United States of proposed new tariffs on Chinese imports, the Global Times said Wednesday.

The videos Global Times editor Hu Xijin regularly posts to Twitter are never dull...

Global Times@globaltimesnews

The US should have no delusions of using a #TradeWar to pressure China into making key concessions. The Chinese public is more determined than the US’ to fight this trade war: @HuXijin_GT #VideoFromChina pic.twitter.com/AFrTr5pEff

March 26, 2018

Finding the Right Off-Ramp from the Trade War - Claire Reade | Center for Strategic and International Studies:

If the United States goes forward and imposes the tariffs on $50 billion of imports, the trade skirmish begins. History tells us that China will respond swiftly and at least proportionately. For example, when the Barack Obama administration placed restrictions on Chinese tire imports in a WTO legal fashion, China quickly launched antidumping cases that tied up a large value of U.S. exports of poultry and autos for years.

China can be expected to respond even more strongly to actions it will characterize as blatantly WTO illegal. The U.S. trade restrictions will not create an existential threat to the Chinese economy, and President Xi Jinping, who has just consolidated his power in China, will need to look strong to his people. He has encouraged a nationalist pride, which appears to preclude any turning of the cheek if the United States inflicts economic injury. China will place a priority on coming to any negotiating table with equal leverage to the United States.


4. Remember When The RMB Was Supposed To Collapse?

Capital controls, political will, improving expectations and a weak dollar seemed to have prevented that outcome...

China’s Central Bank Sends Yuan Surging - WSJ:

The People’s Bank of China set the dollar’s reference rate at 6.2816 yuan on Tuesday, putting the yuan at its strongest since August 11, 2015. The yuan’s stronger so-called fix, which is partly based on the previous day’s close, followed a surge in its value on Monday afternoon. China’s central bank allows the currency pair to trade 2% above and below its reference rate each day.

Goldman hikes yuan exchange rate forecasts, cites U.S. trade ties - Reuters:

Goldman Sachs has upped its 12-month yuan/dollar exchange rate forecast to 6.20 yuan from 6.45 previously, predicting that trade relations with the United States would limit China’s ability to weaken its currency.

China lets its rich invest more offshore as cash outflow fears ease - FT $$:

After a two-year wait, Chinese regulators have revived a programme allowing global asset managers including JPMorgan Chase to raise funds from Chinese onshore clients for investment in offshore hedge funds.

The easing of capital controls shows how Chinese regulators are increasingly relaxed about cross-border capital flows amid a stable Chinese economy and persistent dollar weakness.

JPMorgan Asset Management has received a new quota for the programme, and several other asset managers are expecting similar allotments, according to three people familiar with the situation. JPMorgan received a $50m quota in January, one of those people said. 


5. Former Anbang Head Pleads Guilty

Running a $100 Billion illegal fundraising scheme means the sentence he faces should be quite severe...But how did this go on for so long without regulators cracking down? 

Former Anbang Boss Admits Guilt in Illegally Raising $100 Billion - Caixin Global:

The former chairman of financial giant Anbang Insurance Group admitted to a court on Wednesday his involvement in a fundraising scheme that took in more than 723 billion yuan ($115.2 billion) from illicit insurance sales.

The one-day trial of Wu Xiaohui, Anbang’s former chairman, took place at Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People’s Court, where he faced charges that included fundraising fraud and embezzlement, the court said on its Weibo social media account.

Early in the trial, Wu disputed the charges by pleading ignorance of the law, claiming he didn’t know his actions constituted crimes. But by the trial’s conclusion, he had admitted his guilt and asked for a lesser punishment, according to a court statement released in the evening.

安邦原董事长吴小晖知罪悔罪 案件将择期宣判 

Death penalty for ‘godfather’ of Chinese coal mining town over US$160 million in bribes | South China Morning Post:

The sentencing of Zhang Zhongsheng – known for his splendid hilltop mansions and dubbed the “godfather” because of his influence and power in the city of Luliang – was an unusually harsh punishment for economic crimes, even since President Xi Jinping took power in 2012 and started an unprecedented crackdown on corruption.

吕梁原副市长张中生受贿10.4亿一审被判死刑 - 国内 - 新京报网

Is this the first death penalty for an official convicted of corruption since the 18th Party Congress? Is it an exception because the sums are so huge, or are we moving into a harsher phase?


6. China And Russia Want A Different UN Approach To Human Rights

China and Russia accused of waging 'war on human rights' at UN | The Guardian:

China and Russia are leading a stealthy and increasingly successful effort at the United Nations to weaken UN efforts to protect human rights around the world, according to diplomats and activists.

The two countries have used the UN budget panel, known as the fifth committee, to cut funding for human rights monitors and for a senior post in the secretary general’s office which is supposed to ensure that human rights – one of three pillars of the UN’s function – are not forgotten in its day-to-day work.

Law at the End of the Day: On the Internationalization of China's "New Era" Theory: Brief Thoughts on the UN Human Rights Council Resolution: "On promoting mutually beneficial cooperation in the field of human rights" (A/HRC/37/L.36):

Yet when a significant new player enters the arena it is worth taking a moment to pause and consider the  character, motives and objectives of that new player in an already complex network. In that context, the UN Human Rights Resolution  "On promoting mutually beneficial cooperation in the field of human rights" (A/HRC/37/L.36; 19 March 2018), sponsored by and reflecting an important new perspective of the People's Republic of China is worth considering in some detail. That resolution has been embraced and condemned by leading states and the press.  Yet those reactions have uniformity missed the central important element of that resolution.  Chinese internationalism is now fully  engaged.  Yet to understand the nature of that internationalism--and the new 4th Communist International it suggests--requires a better understanding of the development and focus of Chinese Communist "New Era"  Thought that adds substantial meaning to the new operative  language of "Socialist Human Rights" internationalized-- "mutually beneficial cooperation."


7. Meituan's Massive Ambitions

A Chinese Startup’s Big Ambition: Amazon for Services — The Information $$:

Since Wang Xing founded Meituan as a Groupon clone eight years ago, he has transformed the startup into a one-of-a-kind online services marketplace valued at $30 billion. Now, in his quest to become the next king of China's Internet, he is going head-to-head with China’s biggest and best-funded tech companies, including Alibaba and Didi Chuxing.

In his first interview with a Western media publication since 2015, the 39-year-old entrepreneur said he aims to double his user base, which currently offers everything from food delivery to movie tickets to wedding photography to more than 300 million Chinese consumers. Mr. Wang said he isn’t daunted by the resources of his deep-pocketed rivals. Instead, he says, he is just following China’s emerging middle class.


8. An Insider's Look At China's #MeToo Movement

Who Are the Young Women Behind the ‘#MeToo in China’ Campaign? Organizer Xiao Meili Explains « China Change:

January 2018 was a special month for the Chinese feminist movement. On January 1, Luo Xixi (罗茜茜) released an open letter –– using her real name –– in which she accused her former PhD advisor, Chen Xiaowu (陈小武), of sexually harassing female students. It was as if she had lit a spark that ignited a powerful and dynamic wave of anti-sexual harassment on Chinese social media, and its impact far exceeded the expectations of many, including Luo herself. Students from nearly 80 universities sent joint letters to their university presidents, urging their alma maters to establish a sexual harassment prevention mechanism. More than 9,000 people took part. It’s said that this is the largest student movement in China since the June 4th pro-democracy movement. The campaign directly led to the dismissal of Chen Xiaowu, and within half a month the Ministry of Education promised, “we will work with relevant departments to earnestly research the establishment of a sound and long-term mechanism to prevent sexual harassment in universities.” In today’s China, where all kinds of citizen movements have been suppressed, and public space has shrunk, and everyone speaks and acts cautiously, how is it that #MeTooInChina was successful?

As someone who has been deeply involved in the campaign, I would like to explain how this action was operationalized, what kind of people participated, and the activists’ ideas and thinking...


Business, Economy, Finance And Trade

China to cut VAT tax rates for manufacturing and other sectors: state media - Reuters The cuts are expected to save 240 billion yuan in taxes this year, said the report. Tax cuts for the manufacturing and transportation sector were flagged by Premier Li Keqiang earlier in the month but no date for implementation was given at the time.

Chinese tycoons have to play the connections game - FT $$ By far the most intriguing example of apparent guanxi-leverage is that of Li Shufu, the highly acquisitive founder of Chinese automobile champion Geely, which owns Volvo Cars and the company that produces London’s black cabs...Some observers have suggested Mr Li is making the investments on behalf of the state, a theory backed up by his claim the Daimler purchase was meant to “support the growth of the Chinese auto industry”. But an alternative theory has focused on the identity of Mr Li’s wife, Peng Lijuan. She shares a name with the younger sister of China’s first lady, leading many in China to assume that Mr Li is married to President Xi’s sister-in-law. The assumption is supported by the fact that Chinese internet searches on the matter yield no results and it is impossible to find a single photo of Mr Li’s wife anywhere in the public record.

Financial Firm’s Stock Tanks on Fears of Investigation - Caixin Global Financial company Jiuding Group’s share price has plunged by nearly 75% in the two days since the stock resumed trading after a 33-month suspension, with investors spooked by an ongoing investigation into the firm. Jiuding Group, which owns a securities firm and a Hong Kong insurance company, saw its stock fall 48.8% to close at 1.75 yuan (28 U.S. cents) a share on Wednesday on the National Equities Exchange and Quotation (NEEQ), China’s largest over-the-counter stock trading platform.

China to implement new regulation on express delivery sector - Xinhua The regulation aims to establish a regulatory framework to guide the operation of courier services companies and improve the protection of consumers, and tackle emerging problems including information security and packaging waste

Foreign Credit Rating Firms Move Closer to Going Solo in China - Caixin Global China has begun accepting registration applications by foreign ratings agencies to operate independently in the world’s third-largest bond market. The National Association of Financial Market Institutional Investors (NAFMII), an organization under the People’s Bank of China, will oversee the application process. On Tuesday, it released guidelines for foreign players, part of the country’s steps to build overseas confidence in its $11 trillion onshore bond market.

Investing in Chinese Stocks—投资大中华地区股市: When the Speculation Ends: Beijing Home Sales Fall 96pc On March 27, it was a whole year since the Beijing “326” commercial housing restriction policy. According to data provided by the Centaline Property Research Center, only 3,589 sets of commercial and residential apartments were signed within one year of commercial and residential purchase restriction policies, which was 67013 sets of one year before and after the regulation, a drop of 94.6%. Zhang Dawei, chief analyst of Centaline Property, said in an interview with a reporter from the Securities Daily that from the data of the past year, it can be seen that the overall market has been completely frozen.

China’s Counterintelligence “Trinity” and Foreign Business - Jamestown As the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) pursues a domestic anti-spy campaign and new espionage laws, PRC national security concerns and greater suspicion of foreigners may trump foreign business complaints about unfavorable treatment, rising trade barriers, and feeling unwelcomed. Foreign firms in China should not ignore these warning signs, but instead plan for a period of higher business risk and harsher conditions, especially since strong historical parallels indicate that this period may not pass quickly.

Lost in the Shuffle: China’s New, Overlooked Financial Regulatory Commission - Jamestown the fact that the FSDC was not listed in the government restructuring plan has not stopped market actors from recognizing its importance. Just 24 hours after the plan was announced, China’s financial media had coined a new acronym to refer to the regulatory architecture. Over the past decade, the four key financial regulators have been referred to as 一行三会—one bank and three commissions. The phrase was not only a pithy way to refer to the full group of financial regulators, but it also clearly indicated that the PBOC was the first among equals. The new phrase the financial media is using, however, is 一委一行两会—one committee, one bank, and two commissions

 

Politics, Law And Ideology

Anti-graft chief urges supervision over all state functionaries - Xinhua Comment: Looks to be signaling intensified crackdown on corrupt grassroots officials and malfeasance in poverty alleviation work  //  Zhao Leji, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), made the remarks during a three-day inspection tour in southwest China's Yunnan Province, which ended Tuesday. He asked for "faithful fulfillment of the supervisory personnels' responsibilities empowered by the Party Constitution, the Constitution and the newly-adopted Supervision Law, and the resolute safeguard of the core status of Xi Jinping, general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, the authority of the CPC Central Committee and its centralized, unified leadership."

China Boosts Ideological Monitoring of Overseas Chinese, Returnees - RFA This is not a good sign  // As the party took over "united front" work with Chinese citizens overseas, a residential compound in Beijing announced that any residents who are overseas Chinese, or returnees from overseas work or study, should register with the authorities. According to a March 20 directive from the Wangjing Street neighborhood committee in Beijing's Chaoyang district, all long-term residents of the Daxiyang residential community who have returned from overseas work or study, or who are ethnic Chinese citizens of other countries, were required to register with the compound management by March 26 as part of "an investigation into the situation." An employee who answered the phone at the Daxiyang compound residential committee office on Monday said the orders had come from "higher up."

China’s immigration and aid agencies a sign of global aspirations - FT $$ The driving force behind such a shift can be traced to China’s changing economic and demographic realities. As the nation confronts an ageing workforce and a shortage of brainpower critical to China’s economic ambitions, attracting and managing foreign talent is increasingly being incorporated into Beijing’s grand strategy for the “new era.” Setting up the State Immigration Administration is intended to help China win the battle for global talent.

Xinjiang Authorities Detain Uyghurs ‘Wanting to Travel Abroad’ - RFA Chinese authorities in Ili Kazakh (in Chinese, Yili Hasake) Autonomous prefecture have added “interest in travel abroad” to the list of reasons they are detaining ethnic Uyghurs in the Xinjiang region’s vast network of political “re-education camps” and prisons, according to an official source. Since April 2017, Uyghurs accused of harboring “strong religious views” and “politically incorrect” views have been jailed or detained in re-education camps throughout Xinjiang, where members of the ethnic group have long complained of pervasive discrimination, religious repression, and cultural suppression under Chinese rule.

Xinjiang local Party chief expelled for multiple offenses - Global Times Wang Yongzhi, secretary of Xinjiang's Shache county committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), was found to severely violate political disciplines and Central Party Committee's strategies involving the governance of Xinjiang, according to a notice released by China's top disciplinary watchdog on Sunday.

China inaugurates national health commission - Xinhua Sun Chunlan, member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and vice premier of the State Council, attended the inauguration ceremony. While addressing a symposium held Tuesday, Sun called on health institutions to strengthen the work to offer "comprehensive, lifecycle health services to the Chinese people."

 

Foreign and Military Affairs

Chinese scientists working on game-changing smart driving system for military vehicles - Global Times A Beijing lab is developing a smart system for military vehicles that researchers believe could revolutionize driving in all kinds of terrain and conditions, reports said Tuesday. A microchip a few centimeters in size empowers the system to realize accurate real-time sensing of the driving environment, researchers at the Second Academy of the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corporation told Science and Technology Daily on Tuesday.

China prepares aircraft carrier for sea trial - Global Times China's first domestically built carrier, known as the Type 001A, is undergoing preparations for its first sea trial, while discussions about its name show that Chinese people hold high expectations of the carrier's ability to resolve the Taiwan question. According to the latest online photos from the Dalian Shipbuilding Industry Company (DSIC) construction site in Liaoning Province, where the carrier was launched and outfitted, the scaffolds on the carrier have been completely removed, and a phased array radar has been installed.

China hackers ordered to report software holes to spy agency - FT $$ The guidance from the Ministry of State Security, which comes as China is taking an increasingly isolationist approach to technology, was aimed at boosting its stash of intelligence, experts said. “Clearly this is about local control,” said Christopher Ahlberg, co-founder and chief executive of US-based cyber intelligence firm Recorded Future. “Vulnerabilities could be problems in software but are also an opportunity to get backdoors into them.”

 

Taiwan

Attempts to 'play Taiwan card' doomed to fail: official - Xinhua Any outside forces that attempt to "play the Taiwan card" will find their efforts "futile," a Chinese mainland spokesperson said at a press conference Wednesday. "It harms the interests of all Chinese, including Taiwan compatriots, and it is duping Taiwan compatriots," said An Fengshan, spokesperson for the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, in response to recent visits to Taiwan made by U.S. officials.

 

Tech And Media

Airbnb to start sharing Chinese host information with government - Reuters Airbnb China said in an email to hosts reviewed by Reuters that the decision is “similar to other hospitality companies that do business in China,” and users with concerns can deactivate their listings.

Amazon’s Reportedly Dropping $1 Billion for a TV Show to Rival Game of Thrones | Vanity Fair Now, the company is reportedly adding another potentially massive asset to its lineup: according to the Financial Times, Amazon is in talks to adapt the popular Chinese book series The Three-Body Problem into a three-season show. How much will that cost? A smooth $1 billion. That may be a drop in the bucket compared to Jeff Bezos’s net worth, but it’s also a hefty enough sum to make this potential adaptation one of the most expensive shows of all time—and that’s before production even begins.

Alibaba platforms most commonly involved in legal disputes, Beijing e-shoppers most litigious · TechNode Online shopping legal disputes rose 42% in 2017, according to data released by the Supreme People’s Court. Beijing residents were the most likely to take their case to court, Alibaba platforms were involved in 18% of cases and 18-29 year olds made up almost half of all plaintiffs (in Chinese).

In U.S. Brawl With Huawei, Rural Cable Firms Are an Unlikely Loser - WSJ $$ Some rural internet providers rely on telecom gear from China’s Huawei, which faces potential new restrictions from FCC, Congress

Shenzhen's Homegrown Cyborg - Vice Three days with Naomi Wu

China's Top Anime Site Said Set to Raise $483 Million in IPO - Bloomberg Bilibili Inc., China’s top online platform for streaming animation, is poised to raise $483 million in its U.S. initial public offering, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Baidu chief under fire for privacy comments - People's Daily Online "We're very aware of the privacy issue, including data protection. Over the past few years, China has also become increasingly aware of this problem, and has been enforcing relevant laws and regulations, during the process of which, I think that the Chinese people are more open, or not so sensitive, about the privacy issue. If they are able to exchange privacy for convenience or efficiency, they are willing to do so in many cases," said Li while giving his view on the use of personal data at the China Development Forum Monday in Beijing.

 

Society, Art, Sports, Culture And History

Report: Key unofficial bishop in Vatican-China deal released - AP A Catholic missionary news agency says an underground Chinese bishop who is a key player in a proposed Vatican-China deal over bishop nominations has been released. AsiaNews says Mindong Bishop Vincenzo Guo Xijin was taken into police custody to prevent him from celebrating a Holy Week Mass. He was released Tuesday after a night in detention.

 

Energy, Environment, Science And Health

Energy-Rich Sichuan Demolishes Dams to Protect Parks - Sixth Tone In a Tuesday video report by The Paper, Sixth Tone’s sister publication, a demolition team is seen setting explosives to a small hydropower (SHP) station in Jinkouhe, a district in the southwestern city of Leshan. The razing is the latest since the Sichuan Development and Reform Commission released a notice in August 2017 calling for SHP stations with installed capacities of 50 megawatts or less to be dismantled.

 

Education

清北等19名高校校长教授进人大常委会,2人成副国级领导 19 heads of institutes of higher education are on the NPC Standing Committee

 

Beijing

Beijing Experiences First Big Sandstorm of 2018; High Pollution Levels Leave Beijingers Dismayed | the Beijinger Beijingers woke up to extremely thick haze and PM10 levels of over 2,000 this morning (Mar 28) as a sandstorm settled over the capital. Though pollution levels have crept back gradually since Spring Festival, following one of the best winters Beijing has seen in five years, the off-the-scale measurements this morning have reignited widespread high-strung rhetoric about the city's air quality.