Trade deal signaling; Uighur Act of 2019; Huawei; PRC diplomats need "fighting spirit"
PRC officials and propaganda outlets are in overdrive condemning and making threats over the US House of Representatives’ passage of the Uighur Act of 2019. The bill has to go back to the Senate, but like the Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act it should pass with little opposition and go to President Trump as veto-proof.
So far there are no signs the passage is interfering with the trade talks, and for all the noise of the last couple of days we still have 11 days until the next tariff deadline. Unnamed sources spoke to Bloomberg overnight to say that “Trump’s comments Tuesday downplaying the urgency of a deal shouldn’t be understood to mean the talks were stalling”. That looks to be a classic pre-market leak to boost the market. Will the Chinese side will see this kid of pre-market leaking as a sign of US weakness?
Thanks for reading.
The Essential Eight
The people, who asked not to be identified, said that U.S. President Donald Trump’s comments Tuesday downplaying the urgency of a deal shouldn’t be understood to mean the talks were stalling, as he was speaking off the cuff. Recent U.S. legislation seeking to sanction Chinese officials over human-rights issues in Hong Kong and Xinjiang are unlikely to impact the talks, one person familiar with Beijing’s thinking said.
U.S. negotiators expect a phase-one deal with China to be completed before American tariffs are set to rise on Dec. 15, the people said. Outstanding issues in the talks include how to guarantee China’s purchases of U.S. agricultural goods and exactly which duties to roll back, they added.
Comment: Note that the “outstanding issues” are the key ones supposedly agreed to in principle in October.
People close to the talks say the president’s comment that he’s willing to delay a deal is likely a pressure tactic to get Beijing to close the remaining gaps in negotiations.
"The window for the Chinese to act is now, but it's unclear if they will," said one person close to the negotiations. "They have misread Trump on so many occasions and they may misread him yet again."
The U.S. side points to the recent involvement of White House adviser Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law, as evidence that the talks are nearing conclusion. Mr. Kushner acts as a kind of interpreter of what Mr. Trump would find acceptable in a deal and has worked well with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, Mr. Trump’s lead negotiator, and Chinese Ambassador Cui Tiankai...
The two sides also have been planning a ceremony for the partial deal that wouldn’t include the two leaders...
Mr. Xi sees no reason to travel to Washington, or any part of the U.S., at a time when anti-China voices are getting louder, Chinese officials said. Beijing is studying the signing of the U.S.-Japan trade deal in October as a model. The Japanese ambassador in Washington signed the agreement on behalf of Tokyo, as did Mr. Lighthizer. Mr. Trump was in attendance. China is also weighing whether to send Vice Premier Liu He, its lead trade negotiator, to Washington to sign the deal.
It’s time for China to pay the U.S. back for the help its received over the last forty years, billionaire and longtime GOP supporter Ken Langone told CNBC on Wednesday.
Question: How would China pay the US back? By withholding the coupon payments on the US Treasuries China owns? Don’t laugh, I am hearing this idea more and more.
At a press conference yesterday (Dec. 3), Hua Chunying, the spokeswoman for China’s foreign ministry, said that US secretary of state Mike Pompeo was “behaving just like” Aunt Xianglin (祥林嫂), telling the same story about China “time and again.” The reference may be lost on Pompeo and other US officials, but its meaning was immediately clear to many in China—Pompeo is just a petty nag.
2. More on the tech war
Arm China, the Chinese subsidiary of the British chip company owned by Japan's SoftBank, has become a key player in Beijing's quest for tech self-sufficiency and, in a move likely to alarm the U.S., has developed codes that enable Chinese semiconductors to run state-approved cryptographic algorithms, the Nikkei Asian Review has learned.
Huawei, the Chinese telecom gear maker that Washington has accused of spying, is among the company's biggest customers after Arm China took over the Chinese business of its larger U.K parent last year...
"The goal of Arm China is to help all Chinese chip developers and other product makers to use Chinese-controlled technologies -- not only for the domestic market but for global markets," said William Liu, Arm China's vice president of product development.
Buying control of ARM China looks to have been a huge strategic win.
More than 3,000 semiconductor engineers have departed Taiwan for positions at mainland companies, the island's Business Weekly reports. Analysts at the Taiwan Institute of Economic Research say this figure appears to be accurate. That amounts to nearly one-tenth of Taiwan's roughly 40,000 engineers involved in semiconductor research and development...
"Chinese players are now trying to overcome the barrier by recruiting not only top executives, but entire production teams on the ground," a Taiwanese industry insider said. "They are paying two to three times as much as Taiwanese companies."..
Taiwan updated its trade secrets act in 2013, imposing prison sentences of up to 10 years for leaking corporate secrets outside the island. But this has not deterred career moves to the mainland in the semiconductor industry.
Chinese imports of American semiconductors, integrated circuits and the equipment to make them have risen strongly in the past three years, analysis of the latest official data shows, despite overall purchases from the U.S. declining dramatically since 2018 amid the trade war. Imports of chips and related machinery from the U.S. were almost $1.7 billion in August, the most since at least the start of 2017, and were close to that again in October.
Johnson said: “I don’t want this country to be hostile to investment from overseas. On the other hand, we cannot prejudice our vital national security interests nor can we prejudice our ability to cooperate with other Five Eyes security partners. That will be the key criterion that informs our decision about Huawei.”
Huawei Technologies Co. has been on a public-relations blitz to convince the world that it isn’t a bad actor. Now Huawei’s intensified defense of its image is also being waged on a legal front.
The Chinese telecommunications giant is pursuing legal campaigns against an array of overseas critics large and small. In France, it has filed a defamation complaint against a researcher who claimed that Huawei is controlled by the state. It secured a court judgment against a small newspaper in Lithuania that admitted mistranslating a German magazine’s report of a data breach in Africa, and has threatened to sue the Czech Republic government for saying the company’s smartphones aren’t secure.
Comment: Lawfare and propaganda I mean PR…
After Ms. Meng’s arrest, there was an outpouring of support for Huawei. In the most recent quarter, Huawei’s smartphone sales in China grew 66 percent from a year earlier. Sales for Apple and most of Huawei’s domestic competitors declined, according to the research firm Canalys.
Now many people are talking about boycotting Huawei products. Images of a pair of Huawei-branded handcuffs are circulating online as a new, smart-fitness wristband. One of the “bands” is called the “free meal and accommodation version,” referring to jail life.
So many former Huawei employees are apparently in jail in Shenzhen that the company takes current employees on tours:
方舟子 @fangshimin一名华为前员工说，我那是过时数据，最新数据是龙岗看守所先后关过300多名华为员工，主要是涉嫌职位侵占罪和受贿罪。李洪元被抓的起因是他竟敢起诉华为索取年终奖，牢厂岂能受此侮辱？先是指控他泄漏商业机密，不成，改指控他职务侵占，还不成，才指控他敲诈勒索，以为这回能办成铁案，不料有录音。 https://t.co/SuIQoPiw8G
“We’ll never become Meng Wanzhou, but we could become the next Li Hongyuan,” read one comment (link in Chinese). “We firmly support the Canadian authorities to extradite the ‘princess’ to the US,” said another. Patriotism, a motivation often cited by Chinese consumers for buying Huawei phones, has not eased the online storm of criticism of the company. “I love China, but I don’t love Huawei,” wrote one social media user. Another said Huawei has been “presented as a chariot tied up with patriotism,” but the company has betrayed “business norms and restraints.”
Essay critical of Huawei that went viral - 兽爷丨大象踩了他一脚
Don’t forget this awful case that also reminded middle-class folks that no matter how hard they work or obey the rules, they can never be sure they are safe - 2017 - The death of a young man in police custody is rattling the trust of China’s middle class — Quartz
But the recent case of Lei Yang, a 29-year-old researcher at Beijing’s prestigious Renmin University, has rattled the Chinese public, as it exposes how China’s law enforcement agencies will abuse their power and go to great lengths to cover up their wrongdoings. It also shows how even members of China’s educated middle class are not immune to such treatment.
The Uighur Act of 2019 is a stronger version of a bill that angered Beijing when it passed the Senate in September. It calls on President Donald Trump to impose sanctions for the first time on a member of China’s powerful politburo...
The bill, passed 407 to 1 in the House, requires the U.S. president to condemn abuses against Muslims and call for the closure of mass detention camps in the northwestern region of Xinjiang.
It calls for sanctions against senior Chinese officials who it says are responsible and specifically names Xinjiang Communist Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who, as a politburo member, is in the upper echelons of China’s leadership...
The revised bill still has to be approved by the Senate before being sent to Trump.
The PRC government is of course not happy. There were 12 Items on the Wednesday broadcast condemning the House's passage of the Uighur Act - 新闻联播 - 12.3 CCTV Evening News
Hua said US history is the blood, sweat and tears history of Indians. The US army expelled and killed Indians, occupied their land and seized countless natural resources in the 19th century, Hua said.
Indians only account for two percent of the total population of the US. They suffer from poor infrastructure, lack of water and electricity, and face unemployment, poverty and disease.
"In view of these startling facts, are they really unaware of this? Where is their conscience?" Hua asked.
"Xinjiang-related issues are not about human rights, ethnicity or religion, but about fighting violence, terrorism and separatism," said the spokesperson.
She said Xinjiang suffered gravely from extremism, violence and terrorism. Faced with severe circumstances, the government of Xinjiang Autonomous Region lawfully fought violent and terrorist crimes while addressing the root causes.
Xinjiang hasn't seen a single terrorist attack over the past three years. Those endeavors are endorsed by all 25 million people of various ethnic groups in Xinjiang, according to the spokesperson.
The measures targeting Muslim ethnic minorities in Xinjiang have triggered “widespread discontent among Han Chinese officials and citizens”, a source close to the central government told the South China Morning Post. The source said Chinese President Xi Jinping was aware of the problem because he had been briefed by the country’s chief Xinjiang policy coordinator, Wang Yang...
“The [Han] people can’t voice their discontent, but they vote with their feet. Xinjiang is facing a severe problem of Han population outflow,” the academic said, declining to be named in order to discuss the issue.
In an exclusive interview with the Global Times, the spokesperson of Northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region said on Monday that scholars who spread rumors that a million people were detained in the region actually work for the US intelligence agency, and they cooperate with anti-China forces in the US to smear China's Xinjiang policies.
The so-called experts are Darren Byler, a lecturer in anthropology at the University of Washington and Adrian Zenz, an independent German researcher, who said China detains a million Muslims from Uyghur and other ethnic groups in Xinjiang.
Byler and Zenz are core members of a study program on Xijiang's vocational education and training centers. A US intelligence agency is behind the study program, according to the spokesperson.
Darren Byler analyzes the 25 key points in the Chinese government’s operations manual for Xinjiang’s detention camps.
Unfortunately, the normal avenues for recourse under international law are mostly blocked.Unfortunately, the normal avenues for recourse under international law are mostly blocked. The United Nations will be unable to pass any motion on this issue because China will simply use its veto to block it...
But it can start with an investigation led by the International Criminal Court.
We are barely two years away from the Beijing Winter Olympics. Will there be pressure to move or boycott the games?
5. Designer pigs to join battle to keep pork cheap
The gene that researcher Jianguo Zhao inserted into the pigs’ DNA is among dozens of examples of genetic engineering underway in China—and in rival laboratories across the world—to create super pigs. For years, the quest was for better-tasting, stronger, and faster-growing swine. Now, in the wake of a devastating global outbreak of African swine fever, the more crucial need is to safeguard food security, and keep hogs alive...
The campus that houses Zhao’s gene-edited pigs is ring-fenced by three layers of security checkpoints and can accommodate 4,000 hogs.
“The powerhouse these days is China,” said Simon Lillico, 47, a scientist at the University of Edinburgh’s historic Roslin Institute, where Dolly the sheep became the first mammal cloned from an adult cell in 1996. “They are spending so much money and throwing so much resource at science that we can’t even come close to competing with the amount of money that they are investing in this sort of science, so we need to be smart about what we do.”
Effective measures should be taken and every means should be adopted to restore pork production in China as early as possible, Minister Han Changfu said on Monday at a meeting on accelerating restoration of pork production...
Statistics from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs show the national pork price slumped by 23 percent in November compared to the peak level in late October. In many areas in North China, prices dropped by about 30 percent to below 30 yuan ($4.26) per kilogram...
On Monday, the ministry also announced it has started a three-month special campaign aimed at fighting legal violations involving the buying, selling, slaughtering and processing of pork infected with African swine fever to ensure quality and safety of the meat and its products in the market.
6. More on diplomats taking to the front lines of global information war
The government’s top diplomat, Wang Yi, prodded officials at a foreign ministry gathering last month to display stronger “fighting spirit” in the face of international challenges, three sources with knowledge of the matter said.
While Wang did not give explicit direction at the event, the instructions come after several senior Chinese diplomats set up Twitter accounts, some of which have been used to attack Beijing’s critics. This week, the foreign ministry also launched a Twitter account.
More than 1,000 current and former officials attended the event in Beijing, singing patriotic songs to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the foreign ministry.
“This is the first time we have been told to show more ‘fighting spirit’,” said one source who attended the celebration.
Comment: Not a coincidence this is the third day a row the essential eight has included an entry on this topic. Lucky for China that Twitter allows officials from countries that block Twitter to use its platform anyway. Seems a bit asymmetric.
7. Hong Kong
Chief Executive of China's Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) Carrie Lam said Tuesday that more relief measures will be rolled out soon to help businesses and residents weather out economic hardship, following three rounds of such policies adopted during the past months.
The successful implementation of the Basic Law in Macao has proven that only by forging a broad sense of national identity across the society, can the Basic Law be fully and faithfully carried out; only by safeguarding national sovereignty, security and development interests, can Macao maintain long-term prosperity and stability; and only by including the Macao SAR in the country's governance system and overall development, can Macao progress toward a new, bright future, Li said....
The institutions for maintaining national security should continuously be improved to guard against external interference in Macao affairs and to thwart acts of secession, subversion, infiltration and sabotage...
the people in Macao have been upholding the core values of loving both the country and Macao, possessing a strong sense of national identity and the Constitution, Li said, noting that national identity has a broad and profound social foundation in Macao.
Li’s speech was about Macau but clearly Hong Kong is on is mind
The Bluebell group, Asia’s largest distributor of luxury brands, is asking Hong Kong landlords to share the pain by scrapping the base rent in shopping malls, saying a slump in tourist footfalls will push even more retailers out of business in the coming months.
Children should be taught to appreciate their national identity from kindergarten, says Annie Wu in condemnation of ‘out of touch’ officials
As well as education system, she blames younger parents for not bringing up children ‘correctly’ as patriots
The remarks by Hung Hom Division Commander Alan Chung came after photos of the arrest were circulated online. The officers were wearing black masks and black jackets. One held a walkie-talkie as another held an extendable baton.
8. Interview with Taiwan’s Foreign Minister
Mr. Wu, the chief diplomat for the democratically self-governed island that Beijing claims as its territory, said in an interview Wednesday that the U.S. and governments in Europe are increasingly looking at how Taiwan manages pressure from China’s ruling Communist Party…
Now that Western countries have experienced in recent months what Mr. Wu called an awakening over China’s methods, “they are willing to engage Taiwan, willing to exchange experiences with Taiwan, and to learn from Taiwan,” he said.
Taiwan has also become more forceful in trying to persuade foreign companies to reverse their decisions—often made under Chinese pressure—to reclassify Taiwan as a province of China or remove Taiwan’s flag from their websites, according to Mr. Wu.
Business, Economy and Trade
Yicai Global - Peking University Founder Group Is in Talks With State Firm About Investment Lifeline Founder Group, which has business in the fields of information technology, healthcare, real estate and finance, has been discussing restructuring with many potential partners, the 21st Century Business Herald reported, citing people familiar with the matter. There are still significant uncertainties regarding the deal as it has not yet been finalized, the conglomerate said in a statement yesterday.
China Services Growth Surges: Caixin PMI - Caixin China’s services activity expanded at the fastest pace in seven months in November, thanks in part to an uptick in growth of new export orders for service providers, a Caixin-sponsored survey showed Wednesday. The Caixin China General Services Business Activity Index, which provides a snapshot of operating conditions in the country’s services sector, rose to 53.5 in November from 51.1 in the previous month, marking the fastest expansion since April.
China capex growth hits three-year low as weak economy, trade war drag - Reuters Capital investment by Chinese firms has ground to its slowest pace in three years, as a weakening economy, tight credit and prolonged trade war with the United States dent sales growth and cash reserves, a Reuters analysis showed.
China’s top prosecutor urges courts to cut entrepreneurs more slack as concerns grow about unfair treatment | South China Morning Post Zhang Jun, who is also minister for justice, said prosecutors should give the private economy greater support as far as the law permitted. “For private businessmen who are being investigated, [we should] take the position that there should be no arrest or charges whenever it is possible and consider probation as the preferred sentence if possible,” Zhang said, according to China National Radio.
PBOC Mulls Ban on Agency Collection Operations for P2P Lending Platforms - China Banking News The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) recently released the draft version of the “People’s Bank of China Notice Concerning Standardization of Agency Collection Operations” (中国人民银行关于规范代收业务的通知) for the solicitation of opinions from the public.
Citigroup Edges Closer to Exiting Its Chinese Securities Venture - Caixin American financial giant Citigroup Inc. is edging closer to an exit for its investment in a Chinese securities joint venture, an important step in its plan to set up a brokerage it controls
Installment payments embrace high popularity in China, spur consumption upgrade - People's Daily Online Aside from banks, more internet companies have started offering installment services, such as tech firm Baidu, e-commerce platforms JD.com and Suning, as well as Alibaba’s Ant Financial. During the “Double 11” online shopping spree, Alibaba’s shopping platform Tmall offered “interest-free installments” for over 8 million items.
China achieves annual target of creating new jobs two months ahead of schedule - People's Daily Online A total of 11.9 million new urban jobs were created in the first 10 months of this year, which means that China has achieved its annual goal of creating more than 11 million new urban jobs two months ahead of schedule, according to data released by the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security.
China to further ensure stable employment - Xinhua China's employment situation has maintained overall stability this year with the newly-added urban jobs meeting the annual target ahead of schedule, according to a statement released after a State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Li Keqiang on Wednesday.
Setting politics aside, Sequoia raises $3.4 billion for US and China investments | TechCrunch Sequoia has brought in $1.8 billion for its Sequoia Capital China Growth Fund V and about $550 million for Sequoia Capital China Venture Fund VII, per filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Politics and Law
内蒙古自治区政协副主席马明被查 Inner Mongolia deputy chairman of the provincial CPPCC is under investigation
中共中央办公厅印发《2019-2023年全国党政领导班子建设规划纲要》_CCTV CCP central Committee Office issues the "2019-2023 outline of the national plan for the building of party and government leading bodies"
中央组织部负责人就印发《2019－2023年全国党政领导班子建设规划纲要》答记者问-新华网 Authoritative Q&A on the outline
带头做到“两个维护” 着力推进机关党的政治建设 - 求是网 Qu Qingshan, head of the Party History Research Office of the CPC Central Committee, writes in the latest Qiushi on Central and State organs taking the lead in Party Construction and the "Two Upholds"
Top Rail Executive to Take the Wheel at Government Rail Agency - Caixin The move will see Liu Zhenfang take over as director of the National Railway Administration, according to a Tuesday announcement on the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security’s website. The transfer was likely in the works since last month, based on similar moves by Liu in November within rail-related units within the Communist Party.
健全保证宪法全面实施的体制机制 - 习近平,四中,干部群众,九届,结合起来 - 西藏日报 - 汉丰网 “People's Leader” in Tibet Daily article on improve institutions and mechanisms to ensure the full implementation of the constitution...'core of the entire Party, military commander inc hief, people's leader".. 要以维护宪法权威的实际行动维护习近平总书记党中央的核心、全党的核心地位，维护党中央权威和集中统一领导，让总书记党中央的核心、全党的核心地位深深扎根在西藏各族干部群众的心中，让习近平新时代中国特色社会主义思想融入各族干部群众的血脉，使拥戴信赖忠诚捍卫全党核心、军队统帅、人民领袖成为各族干部群众的政治自觉、思想自觉、行动自觉。
以市域为抓手推进社会治理现代化--法制网 从定位上讲，市域是承上启下的枢纽，是统筹推进城乡一体化的有效载体，具有以点带面的示范作用。从防范化解矛盾风险的特殊作用上讲，市域是观察矛盾风险的晴雨表，是守住安全稳定底线的主阵地，是满足人民群众新需求的大平台。 // More on Modernization of municipal social governance 市域社会治理现代化, a topic to watch
Foreign and Defense Affairs
NATO - Official text: London Declaration, 04-Dec.-2019 We recognise that China’s growing influence and international policies present both opportunities and challenges that we need to address together as an Alliance.
Xi meets foreign attendees to Imperial Springs Int'l Forum, calls for upholding multilateralism - Xinhua The foreign delegates, including former Latvian President Vaira Vike-Freiberga, former Tanzanian President Benjamin William Mkapa, and former Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, spoke highly of China's important contribution to safeguarding world peace and promoting sustainable development...They told Xi that the world needs to uphold multilateralism, improve global governance, and build a more just, fair and diversified international order.
Xi Jinping sends strong message with handshake for Australian political donor - The Age Australian political donor Chau Chak Wing has achieved what Prime Minister Scott Morrison could not – a handshake with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the red carpet before a meeting in the Great Hall of the People. Chinese state television showed Xi greeting Chau, an Australian businessman, on Tuesday evening, before meeting a group of world leaders that Chau is hosting in China [The Imperial Springs Forum]
AP Exclusive: 629 Pakistani girls sold as brides to China Page after page, the names stack up: 629 girls and women from across Pakistan who were sold as brides to Chinese men and taken to China. The list, obtained by The Associated Press, was compiled by Pakistani investigators determined to break up trafficking networks exploiting the country’s poor and vulnerable
Arms firm makes artificial diamonds that could be used in laser weapons - Global Times The colorful synthetic diamonds on display at the recent 2019 China International Jewellery Fair in Beijing included large, high clarity samples, according to a statement by China North Industries Group Corporation Limited (NORINCO) on its WeChat account on Tuesday.
Blackstone CEO Discusses How to Bring Beijing and Washington Together - Caixin “China’s business environment, political structure, history, and culture are full of intricacies that many in the U.S. and elsewhere do not fully understand,” he said. “As I’ve expanded both my business and philanthropic work in China, I’ve realized the Chinese, just like Americans, are working hard to encourage prosperity in their country and build better lives for future generations.”
Readout of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Milley's Phone Call with People's Liberation Army of China Chief of the Joint Staff Department Gen. Li Zuocheng > Joint Chiefs of Staff > News Display The introductory call between the two leaders provided an opportunity to discuss building a constructive, results-oriented U.S.-China defense relationship. The two military leaders both agreed on the value of a productive dialogue, effectively managing differences, and cooperation on areas of common ground.
South Korea unlikely to let US deploy missile - Global Times Whether South Korea hosts the US intermediate-range missile is a potential challenge for China-South Korea relations. Rounds of negotiations between the US and South Korea on sharing the cost of maintaining US troops on the Korean Peninsula have ended without an agreement. The US has piled pressure on South Korea, if the latter doesn't compromise over the cost-sharing issue, it might make concessions over other issues such as allowing the US to deploy the intermediate-range missile on its soil. But as South Korea has already suffered a lot because of the deployment of THAAD, it would deal with the intermediate-range missile deployment issue very prudently.
US threats can’t deter China’s development - Global Times China is the main target of US suppression, and this won't change. We shouldn't go all out and collide head-on with the US. It can only contain China in limited areas, which cannot affect China's rise. As long as we hold our ground, most US provocations are beating the air. China should focus on development and exploring more common interests and values with other countries. US policies toward China are irrational in many aspects with ugly double standards. As long as China better develops and sincerely opens up, we will be capable of dealing with the US while we increasingly receive the support of the international community. These two goals are what we should strive to gradually achieve.
Unilateralism, hegemonism biggest threat to world peace, stability: Wang Yi - Xinhua Wang made the remarks during a meeting with South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha. "Unilateralism undermines the current international order and the acts of hegemony challenge the norms governing international relations," Wang said.
New push for business to back China’s Belt and Road - The Australian In a speech on Friday to the AsiaLink Business and the CPA forum, Alistair Nicholas, the chief executive of China Matters, which is backed by Rio Tinto, PwC, Aurizon, The Star, GenesisCare and Australia Post, called on the Australian government to sign a memorandum of understanding with China to be part of its global infrastructure program.
Chinese navy set to build fourth aircraft carrier, but plans for a more advanced ship are put on hold | South China Morning Post The Chinese navy is moving ahead with plans to build another aircraft carrier, but plans for a fifth have been put on hold for now, according to military insiders. They said that technical challenges and high costs had put the brakes on the programme and the recent merger of the country’s two major shipbuilders was unlikely to have a significant short-term impact. // Really?
Michael Rogers, former NSA chief, on China, tech and Cold War tactics - CNBC Rogers warned that when business or political leaders differentiate between national security and economic impacts they may be missing the point: “In the 21st Century, the two are very much intertwined.” “Many of our potential adversaries are very focused on conflict in the ‘gray zone,’” Rogers said, or “gaining advantage on the United States that does not trip an armed response from the United States.”
Tech and Media
In Depth: China Sets Sights on Europe for Its Burgeoning ‘Smart City’ Industry - Caixin While the technologies touted for use in smart city projects are roughly the same, such as artificial intelligence and internet of things (IoT), there are some key differences between the Chinese and European governments in terms of their approaches to development and areas of focus. In China, smart city projects are more focused on public security and digitalization of government services, such as using mobile apps to make services more convenient to citizens, said Lu Hongfeng, deputy director at the Shenzhen Institute of Standards and Technology. In Europe, by contrast, governments are more interested in sustainability and environmental projects, such as deploying intelligent water meters.
Doomed by data, our new Trojan Horse | Charles Parton | Standpoint The fall of Troy is an unsettling parallel. The Greeks did not force their way in. Rather the Trojans welcomed the horse inside. The CCP has a similar strategy: “Smart Cities”.
Tencent leads Kuaishou’s $3b pre-IPO round - TechInAsia Tencent has poured another US$2 billion into short-video app Kuaishou’s pre-IPO round, in which the latter has raised nearly US$3 billion, valuing the firm at roughly US$28.6 billion, Chinese business media LatePost reported.
People's Daily Warns against "Malignant Competition" in Blockchain Development - China Banking News The editorial piece entitled “Encouraging Blockchain Growth is Not Equivalent to Charging up Together, Malignant Competition or Reduplication” (鼓励区块链发展不等于一哄而上、搞恶性竞争和重复建设) points out that the wider application of blockchain technology will necessitate heightened regulatory measures from the Chinese government.
Society, Arts, Sports, Culture and History
Chinese head coach resigns after Hungarian skater insults China online - Global Times Chinese netizens and sports commentators backed Zhang Jing, head coach of the Hungarian short track speed team, who resigned on Tuesday, after a Hungarian skater on her team insulted China on Instagram. Zhang made her announcement through her personal WeChat account on Tuesday, saying she was extremely "astonished and outraged" over the insults at China from Hungarian Olympic champion Burjan Csaba. Zhang also demanded a public apology from the Hungarian Skating Federation.
Researchers develop self-powered smart ping-pong table - Xinhua Researchers from China and the United States have developed a smart table tennis table, powered purely by the bounce of the ball, to provide real-time data to assist training.
Beijing Ranks As Having the Most Expensive International Schools in the World | the Beijinger This year, China on average ranks as having the most expensive schools in the world. Even worse news for parents looking for a potential school in the capital: Beijing leads the charge with the most expensive schools in the world at a median average of around RMB 219,000-plus per year. Shanghai is a close second at RMB 210,000 per year, and Shenzhen third with RMB 173,000.