Yi Gang interview; US-China talks in Shanghai; Defense white paper; Hong Kong

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The Essential Eight

1. Interview with Yi Gang

Exclusive: Central Banker Says Market Lending Rates to Replace Benchmark

China will replace its benchmark lending rates with market-based alternatives, central bank Governor Yi Gang told Caixin in an interview in Beijing last week.

Yi’s words mark the first time that the central banker has specified how the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) plans to unify the country’s two-track system of lending interest rates — one track is the benchmark rates set by the PBOC, while the other track is rates that are chiefly set by the market...

China will push banks to begin using the national Loan Prime Rates (LPRs) — which are based on the interest rates that a handful of large commercial banks charge their most creditworthy borrowers..

Another goal of interest rate liberalization is to bring down financing costs for small businesses...

“Now we hope to break this lower limit by increasing competition through reforms to lending interest rates,” he said. “Lending interest rates can be lower. If big banks think that interest rates on loans to big companies are too low to make a profit (and stop such lending), big companies can turn more to bond issuance and big banks can spend more energy exploring lending to small and midsize companies.”...

China’s current interest rates are at a proper level and are approaching a comfortable level, Yi said, adding that “rates are cut chiefly to respond to the risk of deflation, but now China’s (consumer) price trend is moderate.”


2. US-China

Statement from the Press Secretary | The White House

At the direction of President Donald J. Trump, United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin will travel to Shanghai, China, to continue negotiations aimed at improving the trade relationship between the United States and China. The talks will begin on July 30. Vice Premier Liu He will lead the talks for China.

The discussions will cover a range of issues, including intellectual property, forced technology transfer, non-tariff barriers, agriculture, services, the trade deficit, and enforcement.

The Venue for the 1972 Shanghai Communique | | RG21

Question: Will they meet here? Interesting symbolism if so

U.S. Negotiators Heading to China Monday for In-Person Talks - Bloomberg

According to a senior administration official, the Chinese requested that the meeting take place in Shanghai, rather than Beijing...

People familiar with next week’s meeting say it’s a positive step for talks overall but caution that it’s likely to feature a wide-ranging discussion of where things stand, rather than a chance for substantive negotiations. It’s still unclear what the starting point will be for deeper discussions.

Mnuchin: I'm headed to China next week, but there's 'a lot of issues' - CNBC

“I would say there are a lot of issues,” Mnuchin said. “My expectations is this will be followed up with a meeting back in D.C. after this and hopefully we’ll continue to progress.”

China Approves Tariff-Free U.S. Soybean Purchases as Goodwill - Bloomberg

The retaliatory tariff-free quota for 2 million to 3 million tons will be part of a goodwill gesture toward the U.S., and there could be a second round of exemptions depending on how the trade talks progress, two of the people said, declining to be identified as the information is private.

China's soybean crushers in no rush to buy from U.S. despite Beijing tariff offer: sources - Reuters

Despite the carrot of a potential exemption from import tariffs, Chinese soybean crushers are unlikely to buy in bulk from the United States any time soon as they grapple with poor margins and longer-term doubts about Sino-U.S. trade relations, people familiar with the matter said.

FBI Chief Says China's Trying to `Steal Their Way' to Dominance - Bloomberg

'We don't steal': China slams FBI's intellectual property theft accusation - CGTN

"China is different from the United States. China's ideas and practices are totally different. We don't steal, we don't rob, and we don't lie," Hua stressed. 

"We have achieved our remarkable achievements on our own wisdom and sweat. If China is fighting a war, it is a just war to defend its legitimate rights and interests," Hua added.

专家:美式霸权是国际秩序的真正破坏者_CCTV

Wednesday CCTV Evening News again attacks the second open letter about US-China relations, quotes unnamed "experts" that "American-style hegemony is the real destroyer of the international order", among other accusations says the the US uses its domestic laws and technological dominance to recklessly impose trade sanctions against companies and countries, including China, India, the EU and Mexico

美国正造就一个可能无法战胜的敌人

Chas Freeman (傅立民) gets almost half of page 3 of the 7.24 People's Daily for his commentary The United States is creating an enemy that it may not be able to defeat. It is a translation of his June 13 speech at Brown University "The Sino-American Split and its Consequences"

US trade war has cost China almost 2 million industrial jobs, CICC research shows | South China Morning Post

Little anti-U.S. consumer backlash in China - RIWI

Despite the many escalations and de-escalations in China-U.S. tensions over the past year, RIWI’s large scale, broad-based sentiment data in China do not show that any significant anti-American consumer backlash took place, nor do they anticipate one in the near term.


3. Defense white paper

China issues white paper on national defense in new era - Xinhua

The main body of the white paper was divided into six sections: the international security situation, China's defensive national defense policy in the new era, fulfilling the missions and tasks of China's armed forces in the new era, reform in China's national defense and armed forces, reasonable and appropriate defense expenditure, and actively contributing to building a community with a shared future for mankind.

The White Paper - China's National Defense in the New Era - China Military

新时代的中国国防-新华网

China takes aim at U.S., Taiwan in military blueprint - The Washington Post

“If anyone dares to separate Taiwan from China, the Chinese military would not hesitate to go to war,” Chinese military spokesman Wu Qian said as he laid out what officials called a revised national defense policy for “the New Era” — a catchphrase that denotes the imprimatur of China’s assertive leader, Xi Jinping...

Speaking to reporters Wednesday, military officials hailed Xi as “commander in chief,” a title that has not been accorded any other Communist Chinese leader. Following years of purges within the military to establish its fealty, Xi began assuming the title in 2016 as a symbol of his political control.

Andrew Erickson, an expert on the Chinese military at the U.S. Naval War College, said the new white paper did not outline qualitatively different strategies but sent a political message.

Commentary: China's national defense white paper sends signal of peace - Xinhua

The white paper titled "China's National Defense in the New Era" made clear China's peaceful stance of never seeking hegemony, firmly maintaining world peace and stability and actively contributing to the building of a community with a shared future for mankind.

The world is witnessing changes unseen in a century. While peace is an irresistible trend in today's world, international security systems and order are undermined by growing hegemonism, power politics, unilateralism and constant regional conflicts and wars.

Humanity has once again come to a crossroads. Important choices must be made between multilateralism and unilateralism, cooperation and confrontation, win-win progress and a zero-sum game.

Comment: "The world is witnessing changes unseen in a century 世界百年未有之大变局是" is one of the key thoughts driving China's global strategy and propaganda

China pursues nuclear strategy of self-defense: white paper - China Military

China is always committed to a nuclear policy of no first use of nuclear weapons at any time and under any circumstances, and not using or threatening to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states or nuclear-weapon-free zones unconditionally, said the white paper titled "China's National Defense in the New Era," released by the State Council Information Office.

Number of noncombatants in Chinese military almost halved - China Daily

Nearly half the noncombatant jobs in the military have been abolished and about 25 percent of office posts at military units above the regiment level have been shed. 

Military organizations involved in artistic performance, sports, news services, publication, and medical and research bodies have been dismantled or simplified, the white paper said.

Commentary: China's defense policy defense-oriented, peace-oriented - Xinhua

History has taught us that although a country may become "strong", bellicosity will lead to its ruin. The Chinese nation has always loved peace, but certain western media and politicians ignore the fact and spread misleading information about China's defensive national defense policy...

According to the latest defense white paper, China's defense expenditure as a percentage of GDP has fallen from a peak of 5.43 percent in 1979 to 1.26 percent in 2017, while that as a percentage of government expenditure has dropped from 17.37 percent in 1979 to 5.14 percent in 2017.

For detractors with ingrained prejudice against China, they should be reminded that China's per capita defense expenditure remains low, compared to that of other major powers.

Take the 2017 figures as an example. China's per capita defense spending was RMB 750, or about 108 U.S. dollars, a mere 5 percent of the U.S. figure.


4. China-Russia cooperation

Putin and Xi test a budding military alliance in the Pacific -- and step up confrontation - CNN

Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping sent a clear message on Tuesday: They are ready to test the limits of their budding military partnership in the Pacific.

Here's what we know: Early on Tuesday, both South Korea and Japan scrambled fighters to respond to Russian and Chinese military aircraft flying a joint sortie through a region.
Things escalated dramatically. According to South Korea, two Chinese H-6 bombers passed into Seoul's Air Defense Identification Zone, joined by two Russian Tu-95 strategic bombers. South Korea's Joint Chiefs of Staff claimed they fired warning shots at a Russian A-50 command and control military aircraft that twice violated their airspace.

Dmitri Trenin, Director of the Carnegie Moscow Center, says Moscow and Beijing will soon sign a new agreement:

China, Russia seek to rebalance military might in Asia-Pacific | South China Morning Post

Artyom Lukin, deputy director of research from the school of regional and international studies at Russia’s Far Eastern Federal University, said Beijing and Moscow hoped to fill the security vacuum created by the uncertainty over US military commitment to the region, as it seeks to cut down on military spending in the Asia-Pacific...

“The coordinated action by Russian and Chinese military aircraft in the airspace close to Dokdo/Takeshima islets – one of the most politically sensitive areas in Northeast Asia – is very likely designed to send a political message,” Lukin said.

“Beijing and Moscow are essentially telling Seoul and Tokyo that the military balance in the region is shifting and the US is no longer the top dog here – telling them to start thinking if you want to continue to rely on the US as your senior ally and protector.

China Promises Further Military Cooperation With Russia - WSJ $$

The defense white paper was the first since 2015 and reflected escalating security tensions in the region, as the U.S. and its allies seek to push back against what they see as Beijing’s efforts to establish itself as a global military power.

At the same time, the paper—and Chinese defense officials’ comments afterward—suggested growing concern about domestic problems, including the unrest in Hong Kong and separatist sentiment in Tibet and Xinjiang, analysts said.

“The report contains intensified rhetoric doubling down on domestic stability imperatives and sovereignty claims vis-à-vis Taiwan and the East and South China Seas,” said Andrew Erickson, an expert on China’s military at the U.S. Naval War College.

“Meanwhile, China and Russia are attempting to show that their strategic partnership is not merely one of convenience,” he said.

China-Russia joint aerial patrol targets no third parties: spokesperson - Xinhua

The aircraft of the two countries strictly followed the international laws and did not enter the airspace of any other country, said Wu Qian, spokesperson for the Ministry of National Defense, at a press conference.

Chinese and Russian air forces held their first joint aerial patrol in Northeast Asia on Tuesday. China sent two H-6K bombers while Russia sent two Tu-95 MS planes to fly on fixed routes, Wu said.

The patrol is expected to strengthen the strategic coordination and joint operation capacity between the two militaries, Wu added.


5. Hong Kong

China Hints It Could Send Troops to Quell Hong Kong Protests, if Requested - The New York Times

In the case of Hong Kong, the chief spokesman for the Ministry of National Defense, Senior Col. Wu Qian, cited the protests on Sunday outside the central government’s liaison office in Hong Kong, which protesters painted with graffiti, suggesting that instances of destructive behavior were straining Beijing’s patience...

He pointedly cited the specific article in a law detailing relations between the city and Beijing that allows the People’s Liberation Army to intervene, when requested by Hong Kong’s leaders, to maintain order or assist in cases of natural disasters.

【国际锐评】香港绝不能容忍外部势力兴风作浪_CCTV

CCTV Evening News Wednesday "International Sharp Commentary" says Hong Kong will absolutely not tolerate external forces stirring up trouble

香港各界强烈谴责外国势力干预香港事务_CCTV

CCTV Evening News finds Hong Kongers from all walks of life to condemn foreign forces interfering in Hong Kong's affairs

新华时评:内外势力勾结祸港的丑与恶-新华网

Xinhua commentary lashed out at the “ugly and evil” Hong Kong “separatists” who it said corroborate with “external forces” to create chaos in the city and start a color revolution in China. The commentary described the activists as hypocrites and puppets of the British and American politicians who are not interested in democracy and human rights at all. This commentary got a 1 minute mention on the Wednesday CCTV Evening News, the third of three consecutive reports about Hong Kong on that broadcast 内外势力勾结祸港的丑与恶

海外版望海楼:绝不容许外国势力搞乱香港--观点--人民网

"Wanghai Lou" column in People's Daily Overseas Edition also criticizes alleged foreign forces in Hong Kong:

”Western anti-China forces often accuse "one country, two systems" of undermining Hong Kong's democracy and so on, which is sheer nonsense. During the British Hong Kong rule, Hong Kong people did not even have the right to take to the streets. The Governor of Hong Kong was a direct member of the British government. Many positions in the British Hong Kong government were reserved for the British.。。

The heart of some people in the United States, known to all, is to mess up Hong Kong and thus contain China. After all, everyone is no stranger to the "color revolution" set up by the United States in the world. There are many signs that the recent violence in Hong Kong has been masterminded and even organized by external forces. The US State Department does not know whether it can honestly say what role the US has played in it.”

在香港,这些媒体如此煽动暴力 - 侠客岛

People’s Daily overseas edition WeChat account XiaKedao attacks Apple Daily, CNN, BBC and New York Times for favoring the protesters in their reporting, and therefore they are “inciting violence”.

Hong Kong lawmaker Junius Ho threatens opponents on Facebook - CNN 

"Today, I want to tell you very clearly," Junius Ho said, in Cantonese in a video posted on Facebook late Tuesday. "The paths before you? One is a path of being alive, one is a path of not being alive. You must choose which path to take. Decide soon."

Net users recall Deng Xiaoping on Hong Kong - Global Times

Talking about management of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region , Deng predicted that disturbances may happen in Hong Kong and the central government should not fear to intervene when the disturbances caused harm to fundamental national interests. 

Deng also stressed that a limit and standard for Hong Kong residents to manage Hong Kong on their own is their love for the region and the motherland.


6. “Pro-China” Boris Johnson

‘Pro-China’ Boris Johnson ‘enthusiastic’ about belt and road plan | South China Morning Post

Boris Johnson, Britain’s prime minister-designate, said his government would be very “pro-China”, in an interview with a Hong Kong-based Chinese-language broadcaster shortly before he was chosen to succeed Theresa May on Tuesday...

In the interview, Johnson said Britain welcomed Chinese students. “We are very lucky because we have coming to the UK not only lots of goods manufactured in China, we have 155,000 Chinese students in the country which is wonderful for us.

“They make a massive contribution to Britain and to our society. [There are] more Chinese students in London than any city in the world outside China,” he said.

“My daughter was in China not very long ago, learning Chinese,” he said, which is “very important, [and] very difficult.”

Speaking to Phoenix TV, Johnson backed Chinese President Xi Jinping’s infrastructure-based Belt and Road Initiative and said his government would maintain an open market for Chinese investors in Britain.

The video - 英国新首相约翰逊接受凤凰专访 称看重与华关系


7. China TV and mobile phones in Africa

Digital soft power…

China is slowly expanding its power in Africa, one TV set at a time - CNN

In 2015, Xi announced the 10,000 Villages Project, a lofty plan to take digital television to impoverished parts of Africa, such as the village where Nganga lives. Previously, television access in many parts of the continent was a privilege of the elite, and those who were connected relied on old-fashioned, snowy analog reception.

Xi's dream was to upgrade huge swathes of Africa to modern, digital satellite TV networks, that could broadcast a constellation of channels over long distances — so long, in fact, that a TV channel from Beijing could be beamed to African homes...

StarTimes has been the Chinese government's primary contractor to carry out the 10,000 Villages Project, paving the way for the Beijing-based firm — not any of its American or European media competitors — to dominate the African market of 1.2 billion people. A spokesperson for StarTimes said it was "important" for Beijing to work with "an experienced and cost-conscious enterprise for the assignment."

Today, the company beams Chinese TV shows into the homes of 10 million subscribers in 30 African countries, pushes China's state-owned propaganda news network into households over Western news networks, and controls television networks to such an extent in Zambia and Kenya there have been fears the company could black out TVs in those countries, if it wanted to.

Africa-Focused Chinese Handset-Maker to List on New Tech Board - Caixin

Shenzhen Transsion Holdings Co. Ltd., Africa’s No. 1 handset vendor, joined the wave of IPOs on China’s new Nasdaq-style high-tech board, as the Chinese company seeks to raise funds to fuel its international expansion...

Transsion’s Tecno, Infinix and Itel handset brands boasted a combined 215.3 million shipments in 2018, leading the Africa market with a 48.7% market share, according to technology research group IDC.


8. CKNI: Academic publishing racket with Chinese characteristics

Publish or Perish: How China’s Elsevier Made its Fortune - SixthTone

With state backing, the China National Knowledge Infrastructure is muscling its way to monopoly...

Such objections echo those leveled at academic publishers in the West: Why do universities that employ researchers to write papers have to pay unreasonably high prices to access those papers? For example, Dutch publisher Reed Elsevier, which also runs several online databases, has faced protests from European libraries for maintaining annual profit margins of about 37%. Still, that figure pales in comparison with CNKI’s, which for the past decade has posted an average annual profit margin of nearly 60%.

In 2014, China Academic Journal (CD-ROM) Electronic Magazine Co. Ltd., the Tsinghua University subsidiary that runs CNKI, changed its enterprise property from state ownership to private. In practice, little changed. On its website, the Ministry of Education is still listed as CNKI’s “supervising organization.” But the change does coincide with increasingly contentious negotiations with customers. Between 2010 and 2016, CNKI raised its prices by an average of nearly 20% annually. In comparison, Elsevier last year reportedly pushed for a 4.5% annual increase.


Business, Economy and Trade

Regulators in China discuss liquidity issues at Bank of Jinzhou - sources - Reuters The People’s Bank of China introduced a credit risk hedging tool on June 10 for holders of debt issued by the Hong Kong-listed bank, the latest measure by regulators to calm market jitters about the health of smaller banks after a rare state takeover of less-known Baoshang Bank.

Buffett Lunch Winner Justin Sun Barred From Foreign Travel - Caixin sources told Caixin that Sun was put on a border control list by Chinese authorities barring him from traveling abroad because of allegations including illegal fundraising, money laundering, gambling and spreading pornography. The Office of the Leading Group for the Special Campaign Against Internet Financial Risks, a regulatory superagency for internet finance under the State Council, called for the public security department to launch an investigation of Sun, sources told Caixin on condition of anonymity

Caterpillar's earnings disappoint on weak China sales, higher costs - Reuters Its construction equipment division, the biggest source of the company’s revenues, recorded a 22% year-on-year fall in sales in Asia-Pacific due to lower demand, mainly in China.

Ep. 48: Three Squirrels: The Nutty World of Chinese D2C Brands - Pandaily In episode 48 of TechBuzz China, co-hosts Ying-Ying Lu and Rui Ma take a look at the direct-to-consumer, or D2C, brands in China. Specifically, they highlight one of the early winners of the business model: Three Squirrels, a Chinese internet snack brand that started off with selling nuts and went public on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange last week with a market cap of close to $2 billion.

Four Things to Know About China’s Trust Industry Bailout Fund - Caixin

Rolling OYO Bumped in China – HuXiu “Now the figure of real working hotels in OYO platform may be only half of OYO’s official number,” said an insider with deep knowledge of OYO China operation data.

PBOC Injects Close to Half Trillion Yuan via Medium-term Lending Facilities - China Banking News The move coincided with the maturation of 502 billion yuan in MLF on the same date, with analysts forecasting no major changes to liquidity levels.

Alibaba Open to U.S. Merchants For First Time Amid Trade War - Bloomberg The Chinese e-commerce giant on Tuesday opened up Alibaba.com to U.S. sellers for the first time, allowing them to peddle to buyers around the world who seek merchandise to stock shelves or materials to make products. Alibaba says it now wants American producers to hawk their wares as well, eventually helping them tap a vast Chinese market.

Apple Seeks Mac Pro Parts Tariff Exclusion After Move to China - Bloomberg 

Global Business Professionals in the Developing World Believe that China and India will Surpass the U.S. as the World’s Centers of Tech Innovation by 2035 | New Economy Forum | Bloomberg L.P. Globally, 54 percent of respondents strongly agree or agree that by 2035, China and India will have surpassed the U.S. as the world’s centers of tech innovation. A substantial percentage (49 percent) of respondents in developed markets including U.S. respondents strongly agreed or agreed with the prediction that China and India will eclipse the U.S. in technology. Even more (59 percent) respondents in emerging markets are betting that China and Indian will dominate the sector by 2035

Politics and Law

Xi presides over 9th meeting of central committee for deepening overall reform - Xinhua Reforms should be integrated with the ongoing CPC education campaign themed "staying true to our founding mission," Xi said.

习近平:紧密结合“不忘初心、牢记使命”主题教育 推动改革补短板强弱项激活力抓落实--“不忘初心、牢记使命”主题教育官方网站--人民网 会议指出,加强互联网内容建设,建立网络综合治理体系,营造清朗的网络空间,是党的十九大作出的战略部署。要坚持系统性谋划、综合性治理、体系化推进,逐步建立起涵盖领导管理、正能量传播、内容管控、社会协同、网络法治、技术治网等各方面的网络综合治理体系,全方位提升网络综合治理能力。//Among the topics discussed at the reform meeting was improving Internet management, legal framework on content

曲青山:从党的旗帜看初心和使命--“不忘初心、牢记使命”主题教育官方网站--人民网 当前,全党正在开展“不忘初心、牢记使命”主题教育。不忘初心、牢记使命,回答的是“我是谁、为了谁”“是什么、为什么”的问题,也就是“我从哪里来、要到哪里去”“我要干什么、应该干什么”的问题。这是中国共产党立党执政的根本性问题。

华融湘江银行党委委员张建国接受审查调查——中央纪委国家监委网站 Zhang Jianguo, EVP of Huarong Xiangjiang Bank Corporation, under investigation

Inter-ministerial joint conference system for urbanization, urban-rural integration - Gov.cn The joint conference system, with NDRC at the helm, consists of 28 departments and units, including the United Front Work Department of the CPC Central Committee, the Commission for Political and Legal Affairs of the CPC Central Committee, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Ministry of Public Security, and the Ministry of Civil Affairs.

Senior CPC official urges new progress in discipline inspection, supervision - Xinhua Zhao Leji, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, made the remarks during his investigation and research trip in northwest China's Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region from Monday to Wednesday.

三年两罚 知名刑辩律师李金星执业去留引关注_政经频道_财新网 Caixin reports that Shandong province disbars human rights lawyer Li Jinxing for his “improper comments” online that “attacked and smeared the justice system”. Li was the lawyer for the Nie Shubin case and the Wu Xiaohui case.

河北邢台网警:一网民罔顾历史、辱骂爱国群众,被拘留五日|界面新闻 · 快讯 A man in Hebei is detained for five days for hurling insults online against the “patriotic masses”.

China's top court vows death penalty to child sex offenders of serious cases - Xinhua China's Supreme People's Court (SPC) announced Wednesday that criminals committing sexual assault against children that are "extremely vile in nature" and cause "extremely severe consequences" will be sentenced to death with no leniency.

Thread by @PekingMike: "THREAD: Some facts about the family of Li Peng THREAD: Some facts about the family of Li Peng, the longtime premier of China who just died. Rumors about his family's vast wealth have circulated for years. I have looked for that fortune for years and years. Here is what I know. (I will add to this thread over several days)..

人民日报-人民网 - July 24 2019 Li Peng obituary takes up much of the front page of the 7.24 People's Daily, 10 minutes on CCTV Evening News Tuesday. The funeral should be as grand as expected for a former premier and pbsc member who retired in good standing . Anything less sets a bad precedent for the living leaders and elders

【李鹏逝世】李鹏讣告“政治封号”背后的逻辑_中国-多维新闻网 Li Peng didn’t earn the title of “Marxist” in his obituary, as does Mao, Zhou Enlai, Deng Xiaoping, Chen Yun, Ye Jianying, Deng Yinchao, Hu Yaobang and others. Duowei said this is because the title is reserved for only the first and second generation of Chinese leaders.

Foreign and Defense Affairs

Former officer being investigated for discipline violations, not espionage - China Daily "I can say clearly that the case of Qian Weiping's involvement in espionage is not true. Qian is being investigated by discipline watchdogs of the Central Military Commission for serious violations of discipline and duty crimes," Senior Colonel Wu Qian, the ministry's spokesman, said...Qian is the former deputy head of the Central Military Commission's equipment development department.//Comment: Responding to the rumors that his son is a CIA asset

Confucius Institutes contracts reveal universities 'must accept' Chinese government directives - Sydney Morning Herald Australian universities hosting Chinese government-funded education centres have signed agreements explicitly stating they must comply with Beijing's decision-making authority over teaching at the facilities. Eleven previously undisclosed contracts between the universities and Hanban, the Beijing-based headquarters that funds and oversees the global network of Confucius Institutes, shed light on the different approaches taken to safeguarding academic freedom and autonomy under the lucrative arrangements.

UQ student protest turns violent in clash of views on freedom in China and Hong Kong - Australian Broadcasting Corporation Punches have been thrown at the University of Queensland as students clashed over their views on China and pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong...Pro-China students clashed with the other group as they played nationalistic songs and chanted "China is great".Videos posted on social media show shouting and abuse that turned to violence at one point as anger rose// Comment: The school should expel the ringleaders who instigated the physical attacks on free speech, and Australia should demand that the PRC remove its "black hands" from the country

Chinese diplomat blasts Australia's 'negative image in China' over port backlash - Australian Broadcasting Corporation Wang Xining, deputy to China's Australian ambassador, made the comments when asked about the national reaction to the controversial 99-year leasing of Darwin's port to Chinese-owned company Landbridge in 2015. "In China, everybody, I mean the people in the street, think very positively of Australia," Mr Wang said.

Journalists from 24 countries visit Xinjiang - Xinhua "This is a school, not a concentration camp," said Paolo Salom, deputy director of the international department of the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera. "It's a place where people learn not only laws and regulations but also how to find a job and cope in modern society. To overcome extremism through education, no doubt, is the right way."

Duterte says he allows Chinese vessels to fish in Philippine waters to prevent war | South China Morning Post In his State of the Nation address, the president says Manila ‘owns the West Philippine Sea but China controls it’, pointing to the presence of guided missiles on Chinese-made artificial islands

Sheikh Mohamed: UAE and China creating 100-year 'road map' to boost alliance - The National Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed said the UAE and China are creating a "road map" for a century of prosperity as he concluded a landmark three-day visit to Beijing. The Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces said his talks with President Xi Jinping served to strengthen a bond built between the Middle East and the East Asia, dating back thousands of years.

UAE's du says U.S. ban on Huawei not an issue for 5G network - Reuters United Arab Emirates telecoms company du has discussed U.S. restrictions on Huawei with the Chinese company and believes they will not hamper its 5G network, its chief executive said on Wednesday.

Mnuchin: US hasn't seen concerns about Alphabet's work for China - CNBC “I don’t see any area — again the president and I did diligence on this issue — and we’re not aware of any areas where Google is working with the Chinese government in any way that raises concerns,” Mnuchin told CNBC’s “Squawk Box. ”

Technology: how the US, EU and China compete to set industry standards | Financial Times $$ Xiaomeng Lu of Access Partnership, a tech-focused public policy consultancy in DC, says China employs a “carrot and stick” strategy to deal with foreign players in standardisation — “mostly carrots in global environments and mostly sticks in domestic standardisation processes”. In international standards organisations, Ms Lu says, Chinese officials offered business deals under the table to foreign companies in exchange for their votes on Chinese technical proposals. But when setting its own standards, Ms Lu says, China uses the stick on foreign companies, often excluding them from discussions.

UAE, China issue joint statement on strategic partnership - GulfToday Both sides signed many agreements and Memorandums of Understanding, with the aim of strengthening their cooperation in the areas of the economy, trade, investment, technology, artificial intelligence, culture and education, as well as protecting the environment and achieving food security.

Sheikh Mohamed receives honorary professorship from Tsinghua University - GulfToday His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, was awarded an honorary professorship from China's Tsinghua University for his role and initiatives in support of advanced science, technology and innovation.

Four Chinese Nationals and Chinese Company Indicted for Conspiracy to Defraud the United States and Evade North Korea Sanctions | OPA | Department of Justice The indictment returned yesterday by a federal grand jury in Newark, New Jersey charges Ma Xiaohong (Ma); her company, Dandong Hongxiang Industrial Development Co. Ltd. (DHID); and three of DHID’s top executives – general manager Zhou Jianshu (Zhou), deputy general manager Hong Jinhua (Hong) and financial manager Luo Chuanxu (Luo) – with violating IEEPA, conspiracy to violate IEEPA and to defraud the United States and conspiracy to launder monetary instruments.

6 of the world's top 15 defense firms are now Chinese companies - Business Insider Last year, not a single Chinese company had even cracked the world's top 100 defense firms, according to a list published annually by Defense News. This year, six Chinese defense firms are among the world's top 15, with Chinese companies occupying eight of the top 25 spots.

China’s Dissidents Can’t Leave – Foreign Policy 

郭宝胜文集: Why did I apply for a protective order to prevent damage from Wengui Guo?

Taiwan

Want Want China Times wants meeting with ‘Financial Times’ | The China Post In a letter to the Financial Times sent on July 20, Jason C. Hu, vice chairman, Want Want Group, denounced the news story for containing “a lot of information about our media group which are incorrect and produces tremendous damage to us.” “We were never interviewed about this report and, after the publication, we have tried for days to contact the writer with no success,” Hu wrote.

Tech and Media

Huawei turns to Nevada-based radio station for PR campaign - OpenSecrets Las Vegas Public Radio Inc. will develop and air programs to advance U.S.-China relations, according to a recent lobbying disclosure. The station will also work with Huawei on a pilot project to extend American public broadcasting to China...According to a lobbying disclosure signed July 19 by the station’s president, Gregory LaPorta, the radio station will “address concerns that Members of Congress, Executive branch and American businesses have about Huawei products/services being developed or manufactured in the US for US consumption… via programs developed by Mr. LaPorta/LVPR and aired on KIOF 97.9 FM locally and Internet streams worldwide.”

Chinese iPhone users are increasingly opting for Huawei: report · TechNode Close to half of China’s iPhone users that switched devices in the first half of the year chose Android handsets, according to a report from mobile data research firm QuestMobile. Of those, nearly half opted for a Huawei smartphone.

Translation: China's New Security Reviews for Cloud Services - DigiChina The measures establish a new office within CAC to administer security assessments, which are to be conducted by outside technical organizations. They reference existing national standards, giving those generally non-binding documents increased weight, and they enumerate several priorities for assessing security.

China releases new cloud computing rule requiring safety assessment · TechNode The guideline announced Monday was jointly issued by the China’s internet regulator, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) along with the National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), and Ministry of Finance. As part of the new guideline, the CAC will conduct a “safety assessment” on cloud services platforms.

TikTok's parent company appears to have acquired AI music startup Jukedeck - NextWeb 

Society, Arts, Sports, Culture and History

A Radical Realist View of Tibetan Buddhism at the Rubin | by Ian Johnson | NYR Daily | The New York Review of Books The exhibition and catalog offer an unsentimental, non-Orientalist perspective on Tibet, in which violence is a normal part of the political and religious discourse, as elsewhere in the world. That is a boldly challenging view, though—especially in the West, where the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, enjoys a popular image as an irreproachable man of peace. But this overlooks the fact that the Dalai Lama began adult life as a theocrat leading a government with an army

Rural and Agricultural Issues

Juhuasuan Ups Farm-to-Fridge Services with 'Jutudi' | Alizila.com