The Sinocism China Newsletter 01.28.15

We are traveling to the US today, the next issue probably will not come out until Friday at the earliest.

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

1. (全面深化改革一年来)九万里风鹏正举 ——以习近平同志为总书记的党中央深改元年工作述评-新华网 long Xinhua piece extolling the first year of the “new era of reform”…headline comes from 渔家傲 by Song poet Li Qingzhao

Related: 经济参考网 – 开年首月改革提速信号频现 专家提醒如不提速现有成果恐难维系 Xinhua’s Economic Information says there are signs in the first month of 2015 that reforms are accelerating…that is what everyone is hoping…certainly the propaganda apparatus is in full overdrive about reform

Related: 近十项国企改革方案有望率先出台 多数提至春节前-手机和讯网 slate of SOE reforms reportedly to be announced before Chinese New Year

2. China Defends Blocking of Overseas VPNs That Evade Censors-RFA “As the Internet develops, and new circumstances arise, we will take new regulatory measures to keep up,” Wen Ku, a director with China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, told a news conference in Beijing. “Certain types of unhealthy content will be regulated according to Chinese law.” Asked if censorship would affect the development of Internet companies in China, Wen pointed to e-commerce giant Alibaba.com, apparently attributing its success to the complex system of blocks, filters and human censorship known collectively as the Great Firewall, or GFW. “Everyone can see that this is all because of the Chinese government’s policy safeguarding the environment for the developing Internet industry,” Wen said. // 工信部回应VPN被封:不良信息应按中国法律管理 

Related: China Blocks VPNs – Business Insider “You have to remember that most of the 600m+ Chinese Internet users don’t care about accessing the blocked sites overseas,” Bishop said in an email. “So while this affects expats and some number of elite, for most people here this is not yet a big deal.”

Related: Internet firms ‘must obey rules’ – Business – China Daily Searches for “VPN proxy” on baidu, the largest search engine in China, still provide hundreds of entries. Many VPN service providers ask for subscription fees, starting from about 200 yuan ($32) a year. But experts have said that it is illegal for foreign companies to offer VPN services in China. Fang Binxing, a senior online security expert, told the Global Times last week that companies running VPN businesses in China must register with the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. “I have not heard of any foreign company that has registered,” Fang was quoted as saying, adding that unregistered VPN service providers are not protected by Chinese laws, and any company running a VPN business should realize it has a responsibility to register.

3. Apple Q1 Sales In China Pass $16B, Up 157% On Q4, 70% On A Year Ago | TechCrunch Apple Q1 earnings have been a record-breaker for iPhone sales, and Apple is also hitting a high in another area: China. Today the company reported sales of $16.144 billion in the country, up 157% on Q4 and 70% on a year ago. Elsewhere outside of the U.S., Apple reported revenues of $17.2 billion in Europe (up 20% on a year ago); $5.4b in Japan (up 8%) and $5.2 billion in the rest of Asia Pacific.

Related: Apple takes top spot in Chinese smartphone market – data firm | Reuters Apple Inc has shipped the most number of smartphones in China in the fourth quarter, overtaking Samsung Electronics Co Ltd and homegrown companies such as Xiaomi for the first time, according to data firm Canalys.

Related: Apple China Posts Video Showing Creation of Mural for New Chongqing Store – Mac Rumors Apple could be selling even more phones if it had more stores..they know that, look to have aggressive rollout planned  //  Apple has posted a video on its Chinese retail website showing off an art collaboration between international photographer Navid Baraty and artist Yangyang Pan to design a mural for the company’s upcoming Jiefangbei store in Chongqing. The video shows Baraty discussing his work in taking photos of Chongqing, while Pan shares her role in painting the mural that covers the location.

Related: Apple’s Chinese New Year Sales May Bring a Second Holiday Boost – Bloomberg “This quarter is a heavy gifting quarter because of Chinese New Year so it’s in essence the Christmas for the rest of the world,” said Ben Bajarin, an analyst at Creative Strategies Inc. The iPhone in “China is easily going to do better than the U.S. this quarter,” he said. Some analysts had predicted Apple would sell more iPhones in China than in the U.S. in the quarter that ended in December. That hasn’t happened yet, even though iPhone unit sales doubled in China for that period, Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri said Tuesday in an interview. Shipments of the smartphone rose 44 percent in the U.S. in the quarter, he said.

4. China Looks to Prop Up Domestic Chip Makers – WSJ The chief executive of Chinese chip maker Spreadtrum Communications Inc. said China’s central government asked his company last year to begin making special-order “safe phone” processors for some officials’ smartphones, replacing in one to two years widely used chips from U.S. suppliers that Beijing fears could have built-in “back doors” to aid foreign spies. “The security of handsets is very much on the minds of Chinese officials,” said Mr. Li in an interview this month.

5. American and Japanese Scholars View China’s Economy and Politics | Brookings Institution On December 18 and 19, 2014, the Brookings Center for East Asia Policy Studies (CEAP) hosted a dialogue among China specialists from Japan and the United States in which the participants discussed their respective analyses of the Chinese economy and political system. The rationale for such a dialogue is that it is in the interest of both countries to align their assessment of China as much as policy as the basis for a chief task of their alliance: managing the revival of China as a great power.

6. 计生办抱走超生娃 31年后找到亲生父母深度新京报网 Sichuan boy who was taken from his parents 31 years ago because he was an illegal birth seeks out and finds his birth parents. How many kids like this are there in China?  //  31岁的简阳男子袁鹰(化名)出生时因超生被计生办抱走,为找到亲生父母,他把寻亲传单贴遍简阳11个乡镇。直到去年11月,传单被生母邹玉花的邻居捡到并转给邹玉花。后经过DNA亲子鉴定,袁鹰终于在31年后和亲生父母重逢。

7. Canadian Embassy Feared 1989 Chinese Raid Say Confidential Memos | Blacklock’s Reporter In other messages, staff lamented the “astounding stories of corruption at the highest levels” in China: “The Swiss Ambassador, himself an ‘Old China Hand’, told us that over the past few months every member of the Politburo Standing Committee has approached him about transferring very significant amounts of money to Swiss bank accounts. For obvious reasons, he has urged us to guard this information with the utmost care”. Diplomats reported to Ottawa that insider information became difficult to find following the massacre: “One of the unfortunate results of the current situation is an inability to talk to many former Chinese contacts who, if they have not already fled the country or are not under arrest, now prefer not to talk with foreigners,” reads an August 2 Telex. The embassy continued to recount blood-curdling incidents. One evening in Beijing, staff reported a series of seven shots were heard from the city’s Agricultural Exhibition Hall: “Shots were spaced at one-minute intervals and followed by what appeared to be cheers from a throng of people” – suggesting public executions had taken place. // I heard a single shot in the third week of June 1989 near Tiananmen Square at about 8 AM. Chilling, though of course never found out what it was about

8. Lanzhou Shames CNPC Unit for Pollution Crises -Caixin State-run companies are such mighty pillars of support for regional economies across China that they rarely draw direct criticism from local government officials, even when something goes terribly wrong. So it was highly unusual to hear officials in the northwestern city of Lanzhou censure a subsidiary of the oil behemoth China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) recently over environmental incidents that fouled the community’s air, river and drinking water for 3.6 million people. A Lanzhou division of CNPC, whose listed subsidiary is PetroChina, was verbally targeted by city officials at a January 9 press conference called by the city’s environmental protection bureau.

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

Two-Thirds of Provinces Say They Missed GDP Growth Targets in 2014 – Caixin Among the 22 provinces and regions that have released macroeconomic statistics for 2014, and only the western region of Tibet managed to meet its target of 11 percent. Chongqing, in the southwest, also managed double-digit growth, of 10.9 percent, but fell short of its 11 percent goal. The coal-rich northern province of Shanxi was among the worst performers in terms of GDP growth, reporting expansion of 4.9 percent, 4.1 percentage points off its target.

Top 100 Chinese Brands – MillwardBrown Millward Brown and WPP have released the annual BrandZ™ Top 100 Most Valuable Chinese Brands report and ranking for the fifth consecutive year. In only five years, the report has become a strong resource for understanding Chinese brands and the dynamics that drive value growth.

Shanghai FTZ cracks down smuggling – Xinhua Shanghai Free Trade Zone launched a series of crackdowns on smuggling, seizing illegal goods worth more than four billion yuan (640 million U.S. dollars) in 2014, Shanghai Customs said on Tuesday. The value of goods seized last year was more than triple that in 2013, according to Shanghai Customs.

Mexico shuts Chinese trade center project near Cancun The Dragon Mart project, near the resort city of Cancun, was shut down Monday after the project operator failed to comply with environmental corrective measures after being previously fined over US$1 million, the report said.

Car ownership tops 154 million in China in 2014 – Xinhua China added a record 17 million new cars on the road in 2014 as car ownership reaches 154 million, said the Ministry of Public Security on Tuesday. Strong demand for cars has helped the automobile replace the motorcycle as the main method of transportation. Cars made up 58.6 percent of total motor vehicles, a sharp rise from 43.9 percent five years ago. The number of people obtaining driving licenses also ballooned from 219 million in 2013 to 247 million as of the end of 2014, said the ministry, adding 29.7 million drivers have fewer than one year’s driving experience. //  you can tell from the driving…

Shanghai Regulator Said to Order Widest Stress Test on Property – Bloomberg The Shanghai branch of the China Banking Regulatory Commission asked local lenders to conduct their widest-ever stress tests on exposure to the real-estate industry, according to people familiar with the matter. The CBRC for the first time required the tests to include all property-related industries and lending outside Shanghai, said the people, who asked not to be identified as they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. Rapid increases in property loans and trust funding to places outside the city have concerned local regulators, they said.

Yuan Gains as Steepest Two-Day Drop Since 2008 Seen Excessive – Bloomberg The yuan climbed 0.17 percent, the most since Dec. 30, to close at 6.2435 a dollar in Shanghai after dropping 0.72 percent over the previous two days, according to prices from the China Foreign Exchange Trade System. The currency touched a seven-month low of 6.2569 on Monday and was a record 1.89 percent weaker than the fixing. The discount narrowed to 1.72 percent on Tuesday.

Kaisa Bonds Extend Rebound Amid Shenzhen-Led Takeover Plans – Bloomberg “The Kaisa situation took a major turn to the positive, with the expected government-orchestrated investment finally appearing to be in motion,” Owen Gallimore, a Singapore-based credit analyst at Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd., said in a note to clients today. “The large cities, and Shenzhen in particular, are currently seeing strong demand for land and the developers such as Kaisa clearly have valuable assets.”  //  too bad the foreigners have no claim on those assets

Chinese Tourist Spending Hit Record Last Year Amid Income Gains – Bloomberg Chinese tourists spent a record $164.8 billion overseas last year — a 28 percent increase over 2013 — as disposable income rose and more people ventured abroad. Travelers from China spent $113.6 billion more overseas than foreign tourists spent while visiting the country, according to the State Administration of Foreign Exchange. That so-called tourism deficit was almost 50 percent larger than the previous year’s figure.

独家报道|李克强:政府不要总给市场“发号施令”_国内_新京报网 1月26日,李克强主持召开座谈会,听取专家学者和企业界人士对《政府工作报告》的意见建议。李克强说,政府不能总给市场“发号施令”,而要集中精力做好自己“该做的工作”。他开门见山对参会者说:“请各位为《政府工作报告》提出宝贵意见。”

马云打造商界创业“黄埔军校” 湖畔大学3年学费28万-手机和讯网 Jack Ma, several other entrepreneur magnates launching a business school in Hangzhou  //  马云曾经说自己日后最想要做的事情是回到大学去教书,现在他离这个目标又近了一步。昨天,马云、冯仑、郭广昌、史玉柱、沈国军、钱颖一、蔡洪滨、邵晓锋8名企业家和著名学者,在杭州共同启动了湖畔大学项目,意在培养拥有新商业文明时代企业家精神的新一代企业家,使得湖畔大学成为商界创业的“黄埔军校”。上述8人也成为湖畔大学第一批校董会成员。

证监会盯上高送转 要求每单必查_一财网 监管层对于上市公司高送转已有每单必查内幕交易的要求,并从信披规范性、事后监督以及内幕交易核查等角度多管齐下,严防操纵股价和内幕交易等违法行为。

Uber is definitely illegal in Beijing…but that may just be temporary Beijing authorities still haven’t formally made a decision on how they plan to regulate private-car taxi services like Uber in the city. But on Tuesday, Beijing Transportation Committee Zhou Zhengyu reportedly made a pretty unambiguous statement to reporters: The business model of private-car services is illegal; what we appro

Expatriates to be lured for startups – China Daily Zhang Jianguo, director of the State Administration of Foreign Experts Affairs, said that a shortage of scientists and top talent in technology and the service industry has affected China’s innovation capability and competitiveness. “We have to focus on the nation’s strategic goals and attract high-level talent to start innovative businesses in China,” Zhang said. He said the talent-recruiting program had been driven mainly by different levels of government and had become outdated.

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

人民日报评论员:积极面对和化解前进中遇到的矛盾–观点–人民网 ——二论坚持运用辩证唯物主义世界观方法论

山东省枣庄市委书记陈伟简历从官方网站撤下,曾任团省委书记人事风向澎湃新闻-The Paper bio of Zaozhuang, Shandong party secretary Chen Wei disappears from official website, he also looks to have missed the provincial people’s congress, he had once been secretary of the provincial youth league…I believe Ling Jihua’s wife is from Shandong, lots of ties there, so of course speculation…

[视频]【行进中国·精彩故事】我从南疆来新闻频道央视网(cctv.com) top story on Tuesday evening news about youth from Southern Xinjiang going to work in a Guangdong factory as part of a program to hire 5000 of them a year. bit of a strange report, very stereotype reinforcing //  央视网消息(新闻联播):《行进中国 精彩故事》,今天继续为您讲述在广州打工的一群南疆年轻人的故事。新年刚过,传来一个消息,这些年轻人中有两人将被除名,这是怎么回事呢? 这两个年轻人,一个叫艾买提,一个叫则比布拉,两个多月前,他们参加政府组织的招工来到这家轮胎生产企业,他俩为什么会要被开除呢? 艾买提的父亲一年前因病去世,家里至今还欠着2万块钱的外债,因此他很需要这份工作,他也没敢把这事告诉家里人。..师傅们说,这些维吾尔族徒弟和其他刚刚走入社会的年轻人没什么两样。在援疆规划当中,广东省计划用三年的时间输入引进5000多名新疆劳动者到广东就业。

Beijing’s Xinjiang Policy: Striking Too Hard? | The Diplomat China’s long-running Uighur insurgency has flared up dramatically of late, with more than 900 recorded deaths in the past seven years. This puts the conflict’s cumulative death toll in a range similar to that of The Troubles in Ireland or the ETA/Basque separatist violence in Spain. Russia’s longstanding conflicts in the Caucasus share elements with China’s Xinjiang troubles, and also show how harsh repression actually intensifies conflicts and encourages metastasis into other previously peaceful parts of the country.

China says 15 Communist Party leaders in Tibet guilty of graft | Reuters A team from the party investigated officials suspected of joining groups supporting Tibetan independence, providing intelligence to the faction of Tibet’s spiritual leader – the Dalai Lama, funding activities that endanger national security and other violations, the report said, citing Wang Gang, secretary general of Tibet’s anti-graft authority.// 西藏部分干部因向十四世达赖集团提供情报被查

媒体:最高领导明确要求干部不要在书协等兼职|权力|文艺界_凤凰资讯 本文原载于人民日报海外版微信公众号“侠客岛”,原标题为“文艺界正风肃纪,要怎样放风你才懂”,全文如下:

反腐陷权斗论争鸣 红旗文稿遭泼水_中国-多维新闻网 中共党媒《红旗文稿》最新一期有文章《2014年思想理论领域的热点问题》指,目前有观点认为当前大陆的反腐败运动是政治斗争、派别斗争甚至政治阴谋,都是错误的。该文3名作者祝念峰、郑丽平和王雪凌是来自教育部高等学校社会科学发展研究中心的3位学者。文章指,有“极少数人”提出“党大还是法大”的问题,认为强调党的领导会损害依法治国,但这样问实际上是“把党的领导和依法治国对立起来”,进而否定党的领导和社会主义制度。

2014年思想理论领域的热点问题_求是网 2014年我国思想理论领域继续保持积极健康向上的良好态势,广大理论工作者认真学习贯彻党的十八大和十八届三中、四中全会精神,认真学习贯彻习近平总书记系列重要讲话精神,深入研究阐释中国特色社会主义和中国梦等党的理论创新成果,积极培育和践行社会主义核心价值观,为全面建成小康社会、全面深化改革、全面依法治国、全面从严治党提供了有力思想舆论支持。同时,围绕政治、经济、文化、社会以及党的建设等领域一些重大理论和现实问题,理论界展开了讨论和争论,形成了若干热点。

Forgotten Archipelagoes: Provisions on Further Strengthening Cadre Management at Cadres Education and Training Institutions 26 January 2015 The present provisions are made in accordance with the “Eight Provisions of the XVIII Politburo on improving the style of work and forging close links to the masses” and with the spirit of the “Detailed implementing provisions” of the Central General Office and the State Council, to improve the management of students and earnestly improve the atmosphere of cadres education and training.

Dentons to Merge With Dacheng of China to Create World’s Largest Law Firm – NYTimes.com The new firm, to be branded Dacheng Dentons, will have more than 6,500 lawyers in more than 50 countries, overtaking Baker & McKenzie, with nearly 4,300 lawyers, as the world’s biggest firm.

Three prison officers investigated after prisoner fraud case – Xinhua Three prison guards have been put under investigation for suspected negligence and abuse of power after being implicated in a prisoner’s fraud racket, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate revealed on Tuesday. The three worked at Nehe Prison in Tsitsihar City, in the northeast province of Heilongjiang.

看看讷河监狱的“刀把子”(锐评)–观点–人民网 怎么办?在上述案件的社会舆论中,我们可以得出一个重要启示:为了关闭权力寻租的这扇门,就必须打开另一扇社会监督之门。其实,早在去年11月,当地检察机关就对此案进行过调查并出具处理意见,但那只是相当于一个内部处理,对于很多问题的处置还较为暧昧。如果不是媒体再一次关注,监狱部门也许根本就不会进一步调查。 保障司法之剑锋利无比、寒光四射,唯有主动把“刀把子”交到党和人民手中,自觉接受党和人民的监督,才能确保“刀把子”不松动、不生锈,才能挥舞自如,更好地维护党和国家长治久安,维护人民群众安居乐业。

李升泉:“四个全面”:新时期治国理政总方略–理论-人民网 习近平同志在江苏调研时强调,要“协调推进全面建成小康社会、全面深化改革、全面推进依法治国、全面从严治党,推动改革开放和社会主义现代化建设迈上新台阶”。强调“四个全面”协调推进,这在我们党的历史上是第一次,标志着新一届中央领导集体治国理政方略更加完善,必将进一步推动党的理论与实践的大发展,迎来中华民族伟大复兴更加光明的前景。- (作者为国防大学政治部主任)

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

抗战胜利70周年阅兵小组成立 尚未集结训练新闻腾讯网 committee to plan military parade established, report says parade will be relative smaller than the one for the 60th PRC anniversary in 2009  //  新京报快讯(记者贾世煜)今日,有港媒报道称,中国将在今年9月举行纪念抗战胜利70周年大阅兵,参与阅兵的北京军区、武警等部队已在京郊多地集合展开训练,阅兵村建设已基本就绪。新京报记者刚刚从权威渠道获悉,中国今年将要举行大阅兵的消息属实。不过,目前北京军区并未在京郊多地集合展开训练,而是刚刚成立阅兵小组。 新京报记者从有关部门获悉,与2009年举行的国庆大阅兵相比,这次抗战阅兵的规模相对较小,目前许多工作还未开展。

South Korea, China warn Japan not to backtrack on apology over wartime past | Reuters South Korea and China warned Japan on Tuesday not to backtrack on its apology issued 20 years ago over its wartime past when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe makes a statement on the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two.

工作制度要进一步严起来实起来 – 中国军网 制度具有根本性、全局性、稳定性和长期性。党对军队绝对领导的根本原则和制度,核心是部队最高领导权和指挥权属于党中央和中央军委。中央军委实行主席负责制,是宪法确立的重要制度,是坚持党对军队绝对领导、实现党和国家长治久安的根本要求,有利于军委主席对全军实施集中统一领导和高效指挥,有利于加强军委班子自身建设和高级领导干部教育管理,有利于全军全面准确、及时有效地贯彻落实军委主席的决心意图和决策指示,对于保证党中央、中央军委牢牢掌握军队最高领导权指挥权具有根本性、决定性作用。“兵权之所在,则随之以兴。”贯彻军委主席负责制,必须坚持全国武装力量由军委主席统一领导和指挥,国防和军队建设一切重大问题由军委主席决策和决定,中央军委全面工作由军委主席主持和负责,严格落实军委工作规则。

媒体:去年15将军落马 杨金山被查或与薄熙来有关|1980年|1983年_凤凰资讯 核心提示:《重庆日报》曾于2012年2月披露,时任中央政治局委员、重庆市委书记薄熙来率重庆市党政代表团,参观了驻滇某集团军军史陈列室。有媒体认为,杨金山作为第14集团军的“老人儿”,或许与薄熙来保持着某种非同寻常的关系。

China scorns NY Times on Myanmar – Xinhua Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Tuesday called a New York Times editorial, entitled “The plunder of Myanmar”, a distortion of the facts. The New York Times said China was responsible for the wholesale looting of Myanmar’s natural resources. “China’s desire for everything from tiger parts to copper is threatening the environment and political stability,” it said, noting that “the people of Myanmar want this plunder stopped.” “We firmly disagree with the editorial,” Hua said, adding the article maliciously provoked strife between China and Myanmar.

PacNet #7 – A ‘PLA-N’ for Chinese maritime bases in the Indian Ocean | Center for Strategic and International Studies After a PLA-Navy submarine docked twice in Colombo, Sri Lanka last year, there is anxiety among Indian analysts of a renewed thrust by China for a permanent military presence in the Indian Ocean. New Delhi’s policy and strategic circles are abuzz with rumours of a likely Chinese naval base in the Indian Ocean Region (IOR). Following reports of increased Chinese naval activity off India’s Southern maritime frontiers, New Delhi has even revived the proposal for an Indian Ocean Zone of Peace, in the hope that it would discourage Beijing from adopting a proactive maritime policy in the Indian Ocean.-Abhijit Singh is a Research Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses (IDSA) at New Delhi and specializes in maritime security affairs

M. Taylor Fravel | The Myth of China’s Counter-intervention Strategy Increasingly, journalists, policy analysts and scholars as well as selected U.S. government documents describe China as pursuing a ”counter-intervention” strategy to forestall the U.S. ability to operate in a regional conflict.  Moreover, the concept of counter-intervention (fan ganyu) is attributed to the writings of Chinese strategsits, as a China’s own version of an anti-access / area denial strategy Nevertheless, as we show in the article, China does not actually use the term counter-intervention to describe its own military strategy, much less a broader grand strategic goal to oppose the role of the United States in regional affairs.  When Chinese sources do refer to related concepts such as “resisting” or “guarding against” intervention, they are describing as one of the many subsidiary components of campaigns and contingencies that have more narrow and specific goals, especially a conflict over Taiwan.

China’s Tailored Coercion and Its Rivals’ Actions and Responses: What the Numbers Tell Us | Center for a New American Security The fifth paper in the Maritime Strategy Series, by Dr. Christopher Yung and Patrick McNulty, is a groundbreaking data-driven look at how the six claimants of features in the South China Sea have advanced and defended their claims from 1995 to 2014. During several years of research conducted at the National Defense University, the authors constructed a custom-built database of open-source reporting on actions taken in the South China Sea by each claimant, classified them into a detailed typology of different tactics, and drew conclusions from the resulting data. Broadly speaking, the research concludes that China has been the most active player, leading the field in use of all tactics save legal measures, and especially so in military and paramilitary actions. But activities by other claimants including the Philippines and Taiwan are also of note, providing a richer picture of the disputes.

NDU Publishes China Strategic Perspectives Monograph by Jonathan Ray: “Red China’s ‘Capitalist Bomb’: Inside the Chinese Neutron Bomb Program” | Andrew S. Erickson Ray examines why China developed and tested an enhanced radiation weapon (ERW) but did not deploy it. He uses primary source documents to reconstruct the ERW program’s history, assesses drivers behind decisions throughout the program, and considers broader implications for PRC decision making on weapons development. He concludes that the ERW coalition’s rise and fall, the “principles” approach employed by the weaponeers, and the final decision to added the ERW to China’s ‘technology reserve” present plausible explanations to key questions.  Ray also considers how the “technology reserve” model might apply to China’s decision-making on current ballistic missile defense (BMD), antisatellite (ASAT), and hypersonic glide vehicle (HGV) programs.

Chinese Carrier-On-Land Facility Adds Destroyer – USNI News The carrier-on-land itself – widely known since 2009 – made a stir this month in China after new Google Earth pictures made the rounds on domestic online networks, prompting a response from the PLA-backed China Military Online. “China’s ‘carrier on land’ recently exposed by the Google earth photo is not new. The only difference is that a suspected model of 055 is added,” read a posting last week. “The media of western countries had also mistaken a cement carrier located in the suburb of Shanghai for a ‘carrier on land’ with military use. Actually, it was a military theme park.”

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

THE SOURCES OF BEIJING’S CONFIDENCE « Suzanne Pepper Beijing is playing it as a hardline struggle.  But Hong Kong has been through this many times before, first while the conditions for its transfer back to Chinese sovereignty in 1997 were being negotiated, and then in the years since.  The sequence is always the same whenever Beijing sees its sovereign interests challenged in any disagreement or confrontation with its Special Administrative Region. Consequently, everyone knows how the game will play out and the same routines can be seen emerging now in the final showdown over Hong Kong’s 2016/2017 electoral reform saga.  Beijing is confident of victory because by now it has the measure of all the contending players along with their strengths, weaknesses, and especially how to exploit the latter.

Taiwan Spy Affair Shines Light on Military Morale – WSJ The debate around the military’s role in Taiwan and the recurring spy scandals have implications beyond the Taiwan Strait, with analysts and experts saying it potentially puts in question the willingness of the U.S. to entrust Taiwan with military technology and knowledge.

Apologies All Around After Watch Is Presented as Gift in Taiwan – NYTimes Guides to Chinese business etiquette often carry a reminder to never give a timepiece as a gift. The phrase “giving a clock,” or 送鐘, sounds in Mandarin too much like “paying one’s last respects” to the deceased, and the act of it is one of a few taboos based on Chinese pronunciation. That message didn’t reach Susan Kramer, the British minister of state for transport, until after she had given a large pocket watch to the mayor of Taipei, Ko Wen-je, on Monday during a visit to Taiwan.

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Tencent’s Latest Investment: Food Delivery Service – Venture Capital Dispatch – WSJ Ele.me said on its official Weibo microblog page Tuesday that it raised $350 million from Tencent, e-commerce company JD.com, restaurant review and group buying site Dianping, as well as Citic PE and Sequoia Capital. Tencent holds an 18% stake in JD.com and a 20% stake in Dianping, which is often compared to U.S. online review site Yelp. A Tencent spokeswoman declined to disclose how much the company invested in Ele.me’s latest round.

Yahoo sets Alibaba stake spinoff plan, shares jump | Reuters Yahoo said its board of directors has authorized a plan to spin off the stake, tax-free, into a newly formed independent registered investment company. The stock of the company will be distributed pro-rata to Yahoo shareholders and the transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of 2015, Yahoo said. The new entity will include Yahoo’s 384 million shares in Alibaba as well as an unspecified “legacy, ancillary” Yahoo business, the company said.

Stories withdrawn from top journalism award for plagiarism – Xinhua The All-China Journalists Association has canceled an article’s candidacy for the nations’ top journalism award for 2014 and withdrew a third prize given to a TV news report, citing plagiarism and forgery as the reason. The candidate story of Shanxi Daily featured a man devoting himself into the investigation of the history of comfort women during WWII but was finished using other published stories, the association said. They said it was a “serious” case of plagiarism with nine paragraphs identical to a previous story on the topic by a Beijing newspaper.

工商总局回应淘宝“吹黑哨”质疑特别报道新京报网 SAIC responds to Alibaba’s response to the report on fakes on Taobao…Alibab in its response called out the SAIC for acting like a “corrupt referee (literally “black whistle”)  //  针对淘宝官微转发“运营小二”微博质疑工商总局“吹黑哨”,工商总局官员回应称,对于淘宝和其他商家不存在标准差别,监测系委托第三方,结果只针对抽检样本。“非正品”不等同于假冒伪劣,也包括未经正品渠道授权商品。

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

Q. and A.: Luigi Tomba on Privatized Housing and Political Legitimacy in China – NYTimes.com Luigi Tomba, 49, is the associate director of the Australian Center on China in the World at the Australian National University in Canberra. In his new book, “The Government Next Door: Neighborhood Politics in Urban China,” Mr. Tomba, a native of Italy who first went to China in 1988, challenges the conventional wisdom that a property-owning middle class is helping to foster civil society in China. Instead, his research leads him to conclude that the privatization of housing has strengthened the grip of the Communist Party.

60 Minutes Video – Lesley Stahl profiles the great Chinese tennis champion who stood up to her country’s stringent sports system Li Na

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

Gov’t Digs Into Soil Pollution Problem with Proposal for New Standards – Caixin After nine years of debate, a draft of a plan to improve China’s standards for controlling land pollution was released by the Ministry of Environmental Protection on January 14. The standards, which have been released so the public can comment, would add more chemicals to the list of those monitored and put stricter requirement on pollutant levels, especially for farmland. Land pollution has become one of the public’s top concerns, but plans to update national soil quality standards have run into obstacles. The current standards base the maximum levels of major kinds of pollutants on the land’s designated purpose and include a mechanism for monitoring pollution.

China plans national park at major riverheads – Xinhua China plans to build a national park in the Sanjiangyuan region, the cradle of the Yangtze, Yellow and Lancang rivers in northwest China’s Qinghai Province. A guideline for the park has been completed by a design institute under the State Forestry Administration, Wang Enguang, chief engineer with Qinghai’s forestry department, told Xinhua on Tuesday. The park will cover more than 30,000 square kilometers, including the rivers’ sources in Madoi, Zhidoi and Zadoi counties. If the plan is given the green light, construction can begin as early as the end of this year.

Shanghai halts live poultry trading from Feb. 19 to April 30 – Xinhua smart

中国全面停止使用死囚器官,专家称器官移植不会出现供应短缺绿政公署澎湃新闻-The Paper experts say no shortages even after ban on using organs harvested from executed prisoners took effect 1.1  //  1月1日起,中国全面停止使用死囚器官,公民自愿捐献成为器官移植供体的唯一来源。中国器官捐献与移植委员会要求,全国169家具有器官移植资质的医院,停止使用死囚器官。 日前,中国器官捐献与移植委员会主任委员黄洁夫在回应人民日报记者采访时称,器官移植不会出现供应短缺。

 

FOOD AND TRAVEL *

Carnival eyes new China line for burgeoning cruise market | Reuters Cruise operator Carnival Corp is in talks with state-owned China Merchants Group Ltd (CMG) to develop a new cruise line for the fast-growing China market, the U.S. firm said in a statement on Tuesday.

JD.com Beefs Up Its Imported Food Business To Compete Against Alibaba | TechCrunch China became the world’s largest consumer market for food and beverages (F&B) in 2011. Between 2000 and 2013, total food exports to China grew from $8.3 billion to $95.1 billion. Appetite for food made by overseas producers was stoked by a series of food safety scandals, including the discovery of tainted milk in 2008 and concerns over unsafe beef and chicken last year. A recent study by the China Market Research Group showed that many consumers are willing to pay premiums of 30 to 40 percent more for imported milk, meat, fruits, and vegetables because they are perceived as being safer.

Palace Museum planning to cap number of visitors – China Daily According to Shan Jixiang, director of the museum, the draft plan sets an upper limit for daily visitors at 80,000. The proposal is awaiting approval from various authorities that have jurisdiction. “It’s a must, because our museum is too crowded during peak season,” Shan said. “We have to be responsible for visitors’ safety.”

4th Pudong runway opens in March | Shanghai Daily The fourth runway, which is 3,800 meters long and 60 meters wide, was approved in 2011 and work began the following year. With the new runway, the airport’s annual capacity is expected to reach 60 million passengers with 555,000 takeoffs and landings a year. Currently, a fifth runway is being built next to the fourth. The two runways will cost a total of 9.4 billion yuan (US$1.5 billion), said the airport authority.

 

BEIJING *

Even Beijing’s Mayor Says the City is Unlivable | TheNanfang In establishing a top-tier, internationalized livable and harmonious city, Beijing is currently establishing a system of standards, something that is very important. At the present time however, Beijing is not a livable city.  //  great leverage for expats on packages here. Even the mayor says “unlivable”, your hardship bump should be at least 50%…

郭金龙:北京必须控制人口总量特别报道新京报网 昨日,北京市委书记郭金龙参加昌平和密云两个代表团的审议,分别提到“疏解”和“发展”。他表示,北京去年疏解了一批人口,实现了全年调控目标。这几年北京人口增长太快,资源已无法承载,必须控制人口总量

焦点人物-非京籍孩子陷入失学困境 21 parents without Beijing hukou suing over school access for their children  //  如今,21个非京籍失学儿童家庭决定通过起诉的方式为子女争取接受义务教育的权利。这场非京籍儿童“幼升小”规定之变,正在演变为孩子背后的家长与制度的博弈。

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