Xi’s Henan inspection tour; US-China struggle at the UN; National Day preparations

Xi has completed another inspection tour, this one to Henan. The full propaganda rollout is just starting. Xi again stressed self-reliance and improving and upgrading China’s manufacturing sector, a point he also made at the central committee for deepening overall reform meeting on September 9. It looks like Xi is both preparing for US-China decoupling while simultaneously trying to delay it as long as possible and make it as expensive as possible for the US.

I imagine one of Liao Min’s key tasks for this week’s working-level trade talks in DC is to give the US side enough hope for progress to prevent President Trump from blowing a gasket before the big October 1 National Day Holiday.

Thanks for reading.

The Essential Eight

1. Xi’s Henan inspection tour

习近平在河南考察时强调 坚定信心埋头苦干奋勇争先 谱写新时代中原更加出彩的绚丽篇章-新华网

The official release on the inspection tour is out, some of the key themes were "staying true to our original aspirations" and remembering revolutionary history and sacrifices, poverty alleviation, industrial upgrading, environmental protection and Party work. Ding Xuexiang, Liu He and He Lifeng were named in the report as accompanying Xi. Xi also met with PLA representatives stationed in Henan, and for that he was accompanied by Zhang Youxia.

While he did not visit Lankao County, where model grassroots Party Secretary Jiao Yulu worked himself to death, he did say the "Jiao Yulu Spirit" is part of the Party's valuable "spiritual wealth"



“学习小组 Study Xi Small Group” on Xi’s inpection tour- 国庆前夕,习近平再提“中国制造”的深意

Xi visited a factory in Henan and underscored the importance of “Made-in-China” and manufacturing in Chinese economy, and the need to move up in the global value chain. This article revisits Xi’s quotes in the past decade on self-reliance and supporting manufacturing, including some specifically warning that foreign countries will stop selling technologies to China as they seek to contain China’s rise, and therefore China must have its own “core technologies”. “Whatever trap, obstruction, interception and containment there may be, [we shall] overcome all of them and leave them behind us.”

This talking point about supporting manufacturing and “real economy” echoes with what is said by many Chinese scholars and officials in the past year and seem to be part of China’s overall strategy dealing with trade war.

Xi stresses development of real economy in tour to central China - Xinhua

Xi...urged the development of real economy bolstered by manufacturing, with self-reliance as the basis of all endeavors during his tour to central China's Henan Province.

Xi also pointed out that although China has the largest manufacturing industry in the world, efforts are still needed in realizing industrial transformation and upgrade through innovation. He called for technical and industrial innovation to move China's manufacturing up in the industry chain.

Find the way, act boldly: Xi talks with villagers on poverty relief - Xinhua

"Now that you've found the way, you can act boldly," said Xi...on poverty relief during his inspection to central China's Henan Province.

Xi made the remarks Tuesday when talking with villagers in an oil-seed camellia plantation in Guangshan County

Xi stresses confidence, hard work in central China inspection - Xinhua

Xi...called for efforts to promote the continuous and healthy development of the economy as well as social harmony and stability to let people have a stronger sense of fulfillment, happiness and security.

Xi highlights development of primary Party organizations - Xinhua

There is no end of the pursuit of a happier and better life, Xi said when inspecting poverty alleviation projects at a village in Guangshan County.

Party organizations at the primary level should be well developed so that they can effectively implement the plans and policies made by the CPC Central Committee and unite the people to follow the Party's leadership, he said.

2. Hong Kong

Hong Kong cancels China national day fireworks amid protests - AP

An annual fireworks display in Hong Kong marking China’s National Day on Oct. 1 was called off Wednesday as pro-democracy protests show no sign of ending.

The city issued a terse statement saying the show over its famed Victoria Harbour had been canceled “in view of the latest situation and having regard to public safety.”

Speculators will fail spectacularly in attacks on HK stocks - Global Times

Several days after George Soros wrote an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal saying his interest in defeating China "goes beyond US national interests," some Chinese media outlets reported the billionaire financier attempted to short sell Hong Kong stocks recently when the market was hit hard by the city's ongoing riots.

Soros' reported short-selling operation has not been confirmed. However, we hope he won't be so foolish as to repeat the mistakes he made two decades ago.

Netizens call for civil servant who may be a protester to be fired - Global Times

Chinese netizens have called on the Hong Kong customs department to fire one of its officers, who was recognized to be a protester after his mask was removed by a resident on Saturday.

A photo of a letter circulating online shows that the officer, named Lam Chi-fai, was suspended from duty by Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department from Monday.

Tom Friedman Opinion | Hong Kong’s Protests Could Be Another Social Media Revolution That Ends in Failure - The New York Times

The only possible outcome is a compromise. But as the South China Morning Post columnist Alex Lo argued in a Sept. 11 article, Hong Kong protesters are being hobbled by the same social networks that got them their large crowds: Because there is no leadership, there is no ability to cut a deal, and anyone who tries to compromise will get torched online. These modern movements are crowdsourced but also crowd-enforced, and that’s intimidating for anyone who wants to make a deal.

“Worldwide trends usually take a few years to reach Hong Kong,” wrote Lo, and “our social media-driven revolution that has fueled the current unrest is no exception. … But from Gezi Park in Istanbul to Tahrir Square in Cairo, revolutions and rebellions driven by social media have all ended in failure.”

Hong Kong broker CLSA under pressure to leave Swire office block | Financial Times $$

Senior management at state-owned Citic Securities instructed the brokerage CLSA to seek a move from its offices in One Pacific Place, the flagship property in the heart of Hong Kong that bears the Swire name, according to multiple people with direct knowledge of the situation.

The order from Citic, which acquired CLSA in 2013, follows pressure on Swire’s other holdings including Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong’s flagship airline.

Comment: Doesn't inspire confidence in the objectivity of their research.

Hong Kong Jockey Club cancels Happy Valley race meeting over threat of anti-government protests | South China Morning Post

The racing schedule had been so far unaffected by the social chaos engulfing the city in recent months, but that changed when Hong Kong Bet, a horse part-owned by polarising pro-establishment lawmaker Junius Ho Kwan-yiu, was down to run.

The Jockey Club spoke to Ho about potentially withdrawing from the race, but he was adamant his horse would run...

While race meetings in Hong Kong had been abandoned before because of typhoons and equine influenza, this was the first time political and civil unrest had forced a cancellation.

Observations on Technology Use in Hong Kong Protests - Maciej Ceglowski

Because leaders proved a vulnerable point in 2014, the protesters in 2019 have adopted a decentralized approach to organizing. There is no formal leadership, and the whole thing is held together by social media and personal ties. The result is a kind of “twitch plays protest” process of decision-making (or for those of you too old to get that, you can think of it as leadership by Ouiji board).

The protesters make heavy use of two software tools: LIHKG (Li-dan), a Reddit-like message board, and the messaging app Telegram.

3. US-China

Kudlow: U.S., China making music - POLITICO Trade

“Coming into this, China eased some tariff waivers on agriculture, we like that. The president returned the favor and deferred some of our tariff schedules as a goodwill gesture. It’s a positive atmosphere,” Kudlow told reporters after his remarks, adding that “the mood music coming into this is very good.”

Kudlow said the U.S. would love to get back to where talks were before they broke down in May. “We were pretty close to an agreement,” he said.

Cool on preliminary deal: Kudlow downplayed talk of a potential “interim deal” that could further ease tariffs. “They wrote a terrible story,” he said of the initial Bloomberg report on the possibility of a preliminary deal. “It’s one of these Bloomberg novellas you get from time to time.” POLITICO reported a similar scenario is under consideration in which a preliminary detente in tariffs would be met with China making more substantive commitments on intellectual property.

Trump Says China Is Buying U.S. Farm Products - WSJ $$

Speaking to reporters on Air Force One en route to Mountain View, Calif., Mr. Trump said on Tuesday that a deal with China will “be the greatest deal ever made,” adding, “and China knows that.”

Chinese negotiators were making plans to boost purchases of U.S. agricultural products, give U.S. companies greater access to China’s market and bolster intellectual-property protections, people familiar with their plans said last week. China also made public last week a series of exemptions to its tariffs on U.S. imports.

“They are starting to buy our farm products big league,” Mr. Trump said.

Speaker Pelosi talks to Jim Cramer about Trump tariffs, trade war with China - CNBC

“I think the president had to do something about it, I’m just not sure he went the right way,” the California Democrat told CNBC’s Jim Cramer in an interview Tuesday. “I think we should have done it multilaterally, with the EU and the rest.”


Le Yucheng, the vice foreign minister, said in an interview with The Paper that China shares no blame in the current difficulties of China-US relations, and it is all because of some Americans’ obsession with cold war and containment. He said all countries have the right to develop themselves and this does’nt not have to be zero sum. He said China has no desire for conflict and confrontation, but it will firmly safeguard its core interests. 


Huang Qifan’s recent speech on the importance of manufacturing and keeping a big part of the global value chain in China, because as long as there is no decoupling, the US won’t be able to hurt China badly without hurting itself badly.

4. US-China struggle at the UN

5 rights groups urge UN chief to condemn China over Muslims - AP

Five human rights organizations are urging Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to condemn the Chinese government’s detention of more than a million Muslims in the Xinjiang region and call for the immediate closure of government detention camps.

In a letter to the U.N. chief released Tuesday, the organizations said these actions would be an important contribution to addressing “one of the most pressing human rights issues of our time.”

It was signed by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, the International Commission of Jurists, the International Federation for Human Rights and the World Uyghur Conference.

As China sway grows, U.S. to confront it on Uighur issue at U.N. - Reuters

“China is taking advantage in the U.N. of the relative antagonistic, critical attitude of the USA towards the U.N. itself, and is occupying spaces and projecting influence much more than before,” said a senior European diplomat, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

During the high-level U.N. gathering next week, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has said the United States would seek support in calling out China’s detention policy in remote Xinjiang, where the United Nations says at least 1 million ethnic Uighurs and other Muslims have been detained.

U.N. Security Council overcomes Chinese veto threat to renew Afghanistan mission - Reuters

The United Nations Security Council unanimously agreed on Tuesday to extend a U.N. political mission in Afghanistan after last-minute talks overcame a Chinese threat to veto if there was no reference to Beijing’s global Belt and Road infrastructure project.

The final language - drafted by Germany and Indonesia - adopted by the 15-member council does not mention the project.

“To our regret a few countries refused to keep the text of consensus previously agreed,” said China’s U.N. Ambassador Zhang Jun, describing the adopted resolution as a technical rollover.

The resolutions mandating the mission in 2016, 2017 and 2018 all included a reference welcoming and urging efforts like China’s Belt and Road initiative to facilitate trade and transit, but in March the United States and some other council members said they could no longer accept that language.

Comment: Interesting that the US was able to get this language removed this year. No wonder China is upset…

5. Premier Li in Russia

Chinese premier urges China, Russia to expand opening up for common development - Xinhua

Noting that both countries support multilateralism and free trade, Li said China is furthering opening up with its manufacturing sector fully open now. He invited Russian companies to seize the opportunity and invest in China.

Li also urged the two countries to tap their cooperation potential in sci-tech innovation as they have designated the years of 2020 and 2021 as "Year of Scientific and Technological Innovation" in each other's country.

Spotlight: China, Russia eye closer sci-tech cooperation, agree to expand trade ties - Xinhua

During the meeting, Li and Medvedev were briefed by Vice Premiers Sun Chunlan and Hu Chunhua of China, as well as First Deputy Prime Minister Anton Siluanov and Deputy Prime Ministers Dmitry Kozak, Tatyana Golikova and Maxim Akimov of Russia.

The two heads of government also witnessed the signing of a series of deals in areas including investment, economy and trade, agriculture, nuclear energy, aviation, science and technology, and digital economy.

One cutting description of the Li-Medvedev meetings:

China, Russia aim to double trade volume, intensify cooperation - Global Times

China has been Russia's top trading partner for nine years running. Last year, two-way trade surged by 27.1 percent, breaking the 100-billion-U.S.-dollar mark for the first time.

Li called on China and Russia to jointly implement the major energy projects, further open up markets to each other and explore the cooperation mode of oil refining and chemical engineering.

He also called for enhanced cooperation in science and innovation, finance, agriculture, sub-national and people-to-people exchanges.

For his part, Medvedev said Russia is willing to further expand trade with China and will work hard to realize the goal of doubling the trade volume.

Chinese netizens hail Russian documentary as 'precious gift' to PRC's 70th anniversary - Global Times

Chinese netizens hailed a six-episode Russian documentary on the founding of New China seven decades ago as a "precious gift" to the 70th anniversary of the founding of the the People's Republic of China (PRC) and the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

The documentary, which features rare color footage of the founding of the PRC, was aired on Sunday on the eve of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's visit to Russia, Russian news agency Sputnik reported.

Documentary director Alexey Denisov said many shots in the documentary were "absolutely unique and of perfect quality," and were released for the first time, which was "a big hit," Denisov said.

6. National Day preparations

Turning blue: China Inc holds breath as Beijing eyes smog-free skies for National Day - Reuters

Beijing will close building sites, curb fireworks and restrict fuel sales ahead of the National Day celebrating the founding of the People’s Republic of China. But government officials say the era of economically disruptive “one-size-fits-all” crackdowns is over, replaced by a more nuanced approach at a time when the country’s economy is creaking under the pressure of its trade war with the United States.

Though there is still time for a clampdown, executives at major heavy industrial firms believe sweeping closures are not yet on the agenda - as long as routine smog controls continue to do the job. An independent survey last week showed Beijing is on track to drop out from the list of the world’s top 200 most-polluted cities this year.


24 episode Historical documentary series "We are walking on the Avenue", part of the propaganda celebrations for 10.1, started broadcasting September 16. This is the official web site, the episodes are also on Youtube.

为隆重庆祝中华人民共和国成立70周年, 按照中央的统一安排,由中共中央宣传部、中央党史和文献研究院、国家发展和改革委员会、国家广播电视总局、中央广播电视总台、中央军委政治工作部联合出品的大型文献专题片《我们走在大路上》,近期已摄制完成。该片将从9月16日起在中央电视台综合频道黄金时段播出。

Episode 1 on Youtube - 《我们走在大路上》 第一集 新中国诞生 | CCTV - YouTube

中国会变成一个大强国而又使人可亲--理论-人民网 - 郑必坚

Zheng Bijian makes his contribution to the 70th Anniversary propaganda in People's Daily, says "China will become a great power that people will like", but it won't be smooth or easy


And as expected the GFW has tightened considerably ahead of the big day and many people are reporting big problems using their VPNs - Editor of nationalist Global Times writes personal blog questioning Beijing’s online censorship – then deletes it | South China Morning Post

“National Day is approaching and it’s extremely difficult to access the web; even our work at the Global Times is affected,” Hu Xijin wrote on Weibo, China’s Twitter-like platform.

“The overwhelming majority of our people are patriotic and love the Party with strong political conviction,” the post on Hu’s personal account said. “This country is not fragile. I suggest society should have more access to the outside internet, which will benefit the strength and maturity of China’s public opinion, scientific research, and external communications, as well as China’s national interests.”

The original post:

7. Another CITIC investigation

Former Head of Citic Bank Is Under Investigation - Caixin

The former head of a banking arm of one of China’s largest financial services groups, Sun Deshun, has fallen under official investigation, sources familiar with the matter told Caixin.

It remains unclear why Sun, a former president of China Citic Bank Corp. Ltd., is under investigation or which official body is investigating him. No official statement about the probe has been released.

The Hong Kong- and Shanghai-listed bank is a subsidiary of state-owned conglomerate Citic Group Corp...

His relatives and subordinates — including his wife, secretary and chauffeur — have also been asked to cooperate with the investigation, the sources said.

A veteran financial regulatory official told Caixin that Sun was the subject of numerous complaints, which was due in part to the fact that he was in charge of Citic Bank’s corporate banking business. In recent years, he allowed the bank to lend enormous sums to several large private companies when they were in financial trouble, including HNA Group Co. Ltd. and China Fortune Land Development Co. Ltd.

8. CGTN having issues in the UK

Chinese news channel dealt blow as former Ofcom regulator quits | The Guardian

China’s state-owned global news channel CGTN has been dealt a blow to its UK expansion plans following the resignation of a former regulator hired in the wake of Ofcom’s investigation into allegations the broadcaster aired prisoners’ forced confessions.

Nick Pollard, a former non-executive member of Ofcom’s board, was taken by CGTN last year as a consultant to help it abide by television rules as it built a new European base, but has left due to his concerns about the impartiality of the broadcaster’s coverage of the protests in Hong Kong...

Pollard’s departure will raise new questions about the actions of the broadcaster, which could prove awkward this week when it hosts an event designed to boost its profile at a conference held by the Royal Television Society.

Question: How much was CGTN paying Pollard for his “expertise”?

Business, Economy and Trade

China to auction 10,000 tonnes of pork from state reserves | The Guardian The sale on Thursday will be limited to 300 tonnes a bidder, according to the China Merchandise Reserve Management Centre.

发改委:近期猪肉价格趋于稳定 国庆物价有望保持平稳运行_中国经济网——国家经济门户 NDRC says pork prices are stabilizing and that prices should remain stable during the National Holiday week

U.S. Speeds Pig Slaughter Ahead of Looming China Supply Gap - Bloomberg The changes come just as the world of pork is about to be turned on its head, with a deadly virus ravaging herds in China, the biggest producer and consumer. An unprecedented supply gap is expected to emerge as early as next year, and American hog producers are keen to fill the demand.

China state planner approves $9.72 billion of fixed-asset investment projects in August - Reuters The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) approved a total of nine fixed-asset investment projects last month, spokeswoman Meng Wei told reporters in a news briefing.

规范使用地图 一点都不能错(人民时评) Foreign companies in China should take note: People’s Daily commentary says any mistake in using, printing a map of China would be “crossing a bottom line and red line”, and it urges the public to raise their awareness and have “zero tolerance” for inaccurate map. “Not even one bit can be wrong,” it said. 

Chinese Refiners Shaken by Saudi Arabian Oilfield Attacks - Caixin In the first seven months of this year, China imported 44.8 million metric tons of crude from Saudi Arabia, accounting for 16% of total oil imports, according to customs data. The weekend attack prompted Sinopec and CNPC to swap some of their crude to heavier grades, which yield less gasoline and other fuels, insiders at the two oil companies’ refineries told Caixin.

China’s Fiscal Spending Declines as Tax Cuts Bite - Caixin Expenditure was 1.511 trillion yuan ($210 billion) in August, a 0.2% decline from the same period last year, according to Caixin calculations based on data released by the Ministry of Finance on Tuesday. That’s down from a 3.4% increase in July and the first drop since November 2018. Cumulatively for the first eight months of the year, fiscal spending increased by 8.8%, the ministry said.

Juul’s Sales Are Halted in China, Days After Debut - Bloomberg The Juul vaping devices and nicotine pods in a range of flavors, including mint, mango, creme and Virginia tobacco, had been available on Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s Tmall and JD.com Inc., two of the largest online shopping sites in the country. They were gone by the end of the week.

Catalog of production licenses for industrial products shortened - Gov.cn The State Council released a circular on Sept 18 adjusting the catalog of industrial products that require production licenses. The circular decided to cancel the production licenses of 13 types of industrial products, including internal combustion engines and automobile brake fluids.国务院印发《关于调整工业产品生产许可证管理目录加强事中事后监管的决定》

Vietnam Becomes a Victim of Its Own Success in Trade War - Bloomberg Infrastructure is the big challenge for Vietnam, especially at its ports. China claims six of the top 10 ports by container traffic in the world -- including Shanghai at No. 1 -- while Vietnam’s two biggest ports, Ho Chi Minh Seaport and Cai Mep, rank No. 25 and No. 50, according to data compiled by Bloomberg Intelligence.

Embattled Chinese Vaccine Maker One Step Away From Delisting - Caixin Trading in the Shenzhen-listed stock of Changsheng Bio-technology Co. Ltd., which was found to have fabricated data for its vaccines for infants, has been suspended for six months since March 15. As the suspension period has expired, the Shenzhen Stock Exchange will decide on final delisting within 15 trading sessions, the company said Sunday in a statement. Although the final decision is up to the Shenzhen exchange, a forced delisting is “almost surely” coming, several financial industry participants told Caixin.

High-Flying Stock Market Investor Receives Five-Year Jail Term - Caixin A Shanghai court Tuesday imposed a five-year jail term and an 11.8 million yuan ($1.66 million) fine on Xian Yan, once a star stock market investor, for criminal charges, closing the curtain on one of China’s most notorious financial market violation cases.

Interest Rates, Not Credit, Will Be Beijing’s Main Tool To Juice Economy - MacroPolo Since the lending rate cut will be the primary tool for stimulus, the question is how large it will be, especially now that the Chinese economy has come under renewed growth pressures. Although there is widespread concern about whether Beijing has enough policy room to stabilize growth, I believe Beijing can, and will likely, cut the lending rate by up to 50 bps by the end of 1Q2020, with 60% of the cost financed by a drop in bank profits

Politics and Law

这句话,是习近平总书记亲自加上去的 Qiushi says Xi Jinping personally added the specific paragraph about “great struggle” into the 18th party congress report: “It is a long-term arduous historic task to develop socialism with Chinese characteristics, [we] must be prepared to engage in great struggles with many new historic characters.” Qiushi reiterated Xi’s talking points in his earlier speech about struggle, saying the party now faces new challenges but is closer than ever to achieve the China Dream, and it must be bold and meticulous in engaging these combats and struggles.

金灿荣:如何看待中国在当今世界的位置 More excerpts from a recent speech by Jin Canrong of Renmin University, in which he said China has a bright future as it seizes the new round of industrial revolution featured by new technologies such as 5G and AI. But it must be careful not to make two mistakes: first, not to start another cultural revolution, and second not to repeat the US mistake of invading foreign countries and get stuck in places with no strategic value.

以党史和新中国史铸魂补钙(有的放矢) Lv Wenjuan from the Gansu party school wrote on People’s Daily saying all officials and cadres should properly study the history of PRC and the party, so to better understand the party’s “Great Cause” and keep in mind its founding mission.

离京赴甘肃的这名北大经济学博士,被指从政动机不纯工于算计 Niu Xiangdong, a mid-level official in Gansu, was investigated for corruption. One of his many problems listed by the party anti-corruption watchdog CCDI is being an opportunist and plan his career and promotion in advanced, and he reads “books with serious political problems”.

曾任多个重要秘书岗的他,被查 Changchun official Bi Hongying under investigation, this Beijing News story highlights the fact that he worked as secretary in several important posts, including in the Jilin Politics and Law Commission

Xi Jinping's Quotes Replace the Ten Commandments in Churches - Bitter Winter Even though a state-run Three-Self church in a county of Luoyang city in the central province of Henan has replaced the Ten Commandments with President Xi Jinping’s quotes after repeated demands, it didn’t escape reprimands from the government. “The Party must be obeyed in every respect. You have to do whatever the Party tells you to do. If you contradict, your church will be shut down immediately,” United Front Work Department officials lectured the congregation at the end of June.

Foreign and Defense Affairs

Philippine president defends China Telecom role in military deal · TechNode The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) signed a relevant memorandum of understanding last week with Dito Telecommunications, a consortium led by domestic conglomerate Udenna Corporation and China Telecom. The deal would allow Dito Telecommunications, previously known as Mislatel, to install bases and relay towers on military bases. The AFP has similar deals with two homegrown telecom firms, Globe Telecom and PLDT-Smart, the AFP told local media.

菲律宾总统杜特尔特会见陈敏尔Chongqing party boss Chen Min’er visited Manila and met with Duterte. Duterte said the bilateral relations are the best ever in history, and that Philippines is hoping to learn from the China’s governance experience and to have more BRI cooperation with Chongqing and with China. Chen is there to attend a China-Philippines commerce forum.

Modi-Xi’s Wuhan follow-up summit is on, India-China border talks not cancelled: Jaishankar - ThePrint Dispelling doubts that the so-called ‘informal summit’ between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping has got derailed, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar said the meet is on, and that the countries are finalising the dates. Modi and Xi are expected to meet later this year, which will be a follow-up to their meeting in Wuhan, China, last year.

China says Kashmir issue may not be a major topic during Modi-Xi summit - India Today hina on Tuesday said the Kashmir issue may not be a "major topic" of discussion during the planned 2nd informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and President Xi Jinping, notwithstanding the high voltage campaign by its close ally Pakistan over India revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

独家| 中国在委内瑞拉投资打了水漂? 大使说出真相 Former Chinese ambassador to Venezuela Wang Zhen said China has managed to get back most of its oil-backed loans to the country (REALLY???). Wang did not go into the specifics but said only that “Most of the money China put there has been recovered as scheduled,” Wang criticized the US sanctions as bullying but he also distanced China from Chavez and Maduro by saying that the lending is normal country-to-country cooperation, and not cooperation with Chavez, Maduro or some individual party. 

SDF, U.S. Army stage first drill using missiles to avert sea attack:The Asahi Shimbun The joint exercise on Sept. 17 at the Oyanohara training area in Kumamoto Prefecture had China in mind as a potential target of future operations.

China starts talks with Chile to use Punta Arenas as jumping off point for Antarctic exploration | South China Morning Post The discussion took place during the first meeting of the Chile-China Antarctic Joint Cooperation Committee in Santiago, where Chilean authorities are considering whether to give Chinese exploration vessels access to the port of Punta Arenas.

China to deploy Sharp Sword stealth drone for new Type 001A aircraft carrier | South China Morning Post The insider said the new aircraft carrier, the Type 001A, would be equipped with a reconnaissance version of the Sharp Sword drone when it entered service. A second military source, from the Chinese navy, also confirmed that the stealth drone would be deployed for the aircraft carrier and said it was significant since it would help to close the technology gap with the US Navy.

China rejects Vietnam’s accusations about infringing on its sovereignty - Global Times China's Foreign Ministry on Wednesday reiterated that China has sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Nansha Islands and adjacent waters nearing Vanguard Bank, rejecting Vietnam's repeated claims that China's research in the area has infringed on its sovereignty.  The operation of the Chinese side in its jurisdiction in the South China Sea is legal, reasonable and beyond reproach, Geng Shuang, spokesperson for China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said at a routine press conference on Wednesday.

China’s New Ship Helps Strengthen Claim in South China Sea - VOA The Sansha No. 2 transport ship can “cover the whole South China Sea,” reports China’s state-operated Xinhua News Agency. The ship passed tests in August. It has a displacement of over 8,000 metric tons and will help civilian and military work, Xinhua said. The transport ship can go 6,000 kilometers without refueling and carry up to 400 people, the news agency noted. A ship that went into use 11 years ago could carry just 2,540 metric tons.

Chinese defense minister meets Bangladesh chief of air staff - Ministry of National Defense Wei said the Chinese army is willing to deepen pragmatic cooperation with the Bangladesh army in equipment, technology and personnel training, and lift the relations between the two armies to a higher level.

Belt and Road News Network Media Workshop offers exchange opportunities for journalists - People's Daily Online Dozens of senior editors and journalists from Latin America and Africa attended the opening ceremony. They were welcomed by smart robots nicknamed Xiao Meng who opened their arms at the gate of the new headquarters of People’s Daily. Themed "new era, new ideas, new media, new technology", the workshop aims to present China’s development of new media technology to the visiting editors and journalists.

China Establishes $400bln Credit Line For Trade With Iran | The Iranian The available evidence points to the fact that the $400 billion credit line between Iran and China has gone into operation, Chairwoman of the Money and Capital Market Commission of Tehran’s Chamber of Commerce Farial Mostofi said on Tuesday. She added that the credit line has allowed Chinese investors to undertake projects in Iran without bidding.//Comment: Seen this report a few times, not sure how legit it is, so far can not find any PRC confirmation

China sends team to investigate panda death at Thai zoo accused of poor care - Telegraph Chuang Chuang’s death has caused an uproar in China, where the internet is abuzz with concern about whether he received proper care while in Thailand.

Hong Kong and Macao

Junhao Chairman Shi Jinyu Buys 2 Mount Nicholson Houses - Mingtiandi The chairman of Chengdu-based property developer Junhao Group, Shi Jinyu, has now purchased his second and third houses at Mount Nicholson, a high end residential project in Hong Kong’s Jardine’s Lookout area, for HK$1.1 billion ($140 million), according to land Registry documents and sales records posted by the project’s managers.


US cancels Solomon Islands meeting after ‘disappointment’ at it switching ties from Taipei to Beijing | South China Morning Post The planned meeting between US Vice-President Mike Pence and Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare later this month has been cancelled after Washington said it was “disappointed” by the Pacific nation cutting diplomatic ties with Taipei to recognise Beijing. Chad Morris, public affairs officer for the US embassy in Papua New Guinea, said on Wednesday that Pence had been due to meet Sogavare during the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York

China urges U.S. to properly handle Taiwan-related issues - CGTN Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang made the remarks at a news briefing when responding to media reports saying the U.S. Vice-President Mike Pence canceled meeting with Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare after the Pacific nation broke the so-called "diplomatic relations" with Taiwan on Monday..."The U.S. established formal diplomatic ties with Beijing in 1979 based on a consensus on the one-China principle," he said. "It is in no position to make carping comments on the important decision which the Solomon Islands has made by itself as an independent sovereign state to establish a diplomatic relationship with China."

Taiwan’s loss of one more diplomatic ally to China: my thoughts on how Taiwan can strengthen its ties with the outside world — Jerome A. Cohen | 孔傑榮(柯恩) Some have also proposed that an invitation should be extended to President Tsai to speak at a Washington think tank on the same program as a prominent U.S. official. I don’t know whether the current U.S. Government can either arrange for her to have an exceptional “stopover” in DC or to lift the obnoxious ban against having Taiwan’s president visit any American city on a normal basis. I have suggested that Tsai speak, either in person or via Skype, at the Council on Foreign Relations in NY both before and after she ascended to the presidency but she has never given a positive response. But I have never tried the idea of a companion presentation from a leading American foreign policy official. That idea is worth pursuing both in DC and elsewhere in the United States and in a way that could not be seen to imply official U.S. Government “recognition”.

Tech and Media

Yicai Global - Apple, Alibaba and Huawei to Join World Internet Conference Next Month Apple, Alibaba Group Holding and Huawei Technologies are among the foreign and Chinese tech heavyweights that have said they will take part in the 6th World Internet Conference to be held in China on Oct. 20 to 22. Joining them will be Amazon and South Korea's Samsung Electronics, Liu Liehong, deputy director of China's Cyberspace Administration, said a press conference today.

客观理性的中国账户遭封禁,国家网信办驳斥脸书推特内容审核China’s cyber administration denounced Facebook and Twitter for deleting Chinese users’ accounts that it said posted “objective, rational” contents, while doing nothing to accounts that distort facts to smear China.

Forget Go: Microsoft Comes for Mahjong, a Much Harder Game for AI- PingWest At this year’s World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) on August 29, the company’s Executive Vice President Harry Shum officially introduced Suphx, short for "Super Phoenix" as "the most powerful Mahjong AI in history."  According to the company, Mahjong, a game played by significantly more people around the world than Go, is actually more difficult for computers to understand.

Huawei Dangles $1.5 Billion in a Hunt for Global Developers - Bloomberg Huawei Technologies Co. is offering up its most valuable 5G secrets and $1.5 billion to software developers, courting the global tech community at a time the U.S. is heightening scrutiny of the Chinese giant. China’s largest technology company aims to ramp up investment in its developer program over the next five years, Deputy Chairman Ken Hu told attendees at an annual conference.

Inspection of Apps Finds Hundreds of Privacy Violations - Caixin A recent Shanghai government inspection of around 100 apps found over 250 violations of privacy rules, authorities said Tuesday.

Society, Arts, Sports, Culture and History

‘Rental Tigers’ Advertised Ahead of Chinese Holiday - SixthTone As China’s weeklong National Day holiday approaches, the prices of some surprising animals available for rent have nearly quadrupled — with leasing a tiger for the holiday week costing up to 60,000 yuan ($8,500), according to a report Tuesday from domestic outlet Qianjiang Evening News.

China’s minor league football players take collective action over wage arrears | China Labour Bulletin There are 32 teams in the League 2 (China’s third-tier league) and many of them are in financial difficulty. The league lacks the glamour and international stars of the Super League and teams regularly play in virtually empty stadiums and struggle to attract sponsorship and television broadcast royalties. There have also been examples of match-fixing, which have further tarnished the league’s reputation.

Chinese woman pleads guilty in California 'birth tourism' scheme, prosecutors say | Fox News A Chinese woman who ran a California “birth tourism” business that charged Chinese clients tens of thousands of dollars to help them give birth in the United States has pleaded guilty to federal criminal charges, federal prosecutors announced Tuesday.

Energy, Environment, Science and Health

Senior official calls for science promotion - Xinhua Senior Communist Party of China (CPC) official Chen Xi on Tuesday underscored the need to promote people's science literacy and foster the capacity for innovation for the country's development. Chen, a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and head of the CPC Central Committee Organization Department, made the remarks when taking part in an event in Beijing marking the National Science Day. He called for efforts to make scientific knowledge widely attainable, promote the spirit of science, disseminate scientific ideas and advocate scientific methods to improve science literacy.


Chinese woman becomes 35th parent charged in admissions scandal - Los Angeles Times Xiaoning Sui — a Chinese national and resident of British Columbia — was arrested by Spanish authorities Monday night, according to the U.S. attorney’s office in Massachusetts, which is seeking Sui’s extradition. Sui, the 35th parent to be charged in the college admissions scandal, has been indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit fraud and honest services mail fraud.

Rural and Agricultural Issues

China pledges efforts to develop family farms - Xinhua Governments at all levels should support the construction of warehouses, ice storehouses and other infrastructures to boost the development of family farms, Zhao Yang, an official with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, told a press conference. Preferential fiscal and tax policies will be formulated to family farms and more training will also be introduced, he added.