The Sinocism China Newsletter 02.12.15

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Today’s Links: 

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

1. Without corruption, some ask, can the Chinese Communist Party function? – The Washington Post Ren Jianming, a professor of clean governance at Beihang University in Beijing, said officials were not used to a system that ran without corruption. “Developers don’t believe that, without bribing, they would get a project, and officials don’t believe that, without bribing, they could be promoted,” he said. “They don’t trust a clean system. “Officials have stopped or delayed making decisions to avoid risks. Even if they don’t take a bribe now, they might be suspected or reported. Then their previous corruption would be found out.” // definitely what I am hearing

Related: 中纪委刊文驳反腐影响经济论:或别有用心|反腐_新浪新闻 CCDI attacks those who say the corruption crackdown is hurting the economy  // 近两年来,处于结构调整期的我国经济增速放缓,增长指标数字降低。社会上便有人硬把当前经济下行压力增大与反腐败力度加大扯在一起,认为都是反腐闹的。有的说反腐败再这样无休止地查下去,会打击面过大,搞得人人自危,导致消费萎缩,影响经济发展;有的说反腐败会让干部变得缩手缩脚、明哲保身,为官不为,不愿干事了,等等。这些观点的存在,或是对我国经济发展进入新常态不了解,或是对反腐败面临严峻复杂形势的认识不深刻,抑或是别有用心。

Related: Chinese official warns anti-corruption efforts could affect economic growth | Business Spectator According to a People’s Daily report, Zhou Benshan, party secretary of the Hebei provincial committee of the Communist Party made the comments at a ‘self-criticism’ session on 26 December 2014. “I resolutely support the CPC’s decision to form a disciplinary mechanism to ensure party cadres don’t dare be corrupt” Zhou is reported to have said. “However I am afraid that too much punishment of senior officials could harm the stability and development of the local economy.” // Zhou clearly didn’t get the CCDI memo, probably sweating today

2. China’s state-owned enterprises face new inspections in crackdown on graft | South China Morning Post The mainland’s top graft-buster has announced a round of inspections into 26 state-owned enterprises in an extension to the Communist Party’s crackdown on corruption. The widening probe would cover all major SOEs and financial firms this year as some enterprises showed “very noticeable” disciplinary problems, said Wang Qishan, who heads the party’s efforts to combat corruption.

Related: 王岐山在中央巡视工作动员部署会上强调:巡视要利剑高悬震慑常在—中央纪委监察部网站 list of the 26 SOEs that are going to have a rough Spring  //  经中央批准,2015年中央第一轮巡视将对中国核工业集团公司、中国核工业建设集团公司、中国石油天然气集团公司、中国海洋石油总公司、国家开发投资公司、中国东方电气集团有限公司、中国电子科技集团公司、中国电子信息产业集团有限公司、中国电力投资集团公司、国家核电技术有限公司、中国中化集团公司、中国五矿集团公司、中国华能集团公司、中国建筑工程总公司、国家电网公司、中国南方电网有限责任公司、中国船舶重工集团公司、中国远洋运输(集团)总公司、中国机械工业集团有限公司、中国通用技术(集团)控股有限责任公司、中国大唐集团公司、中国国电集团公司、中国电信集团公司、中国移动通信集团公司、宝钢集团有限公司、武汉钢铁(集团)公司等26家央企进行专项巡视。

Related: 中共中央政治局召开会议 讨论政府工作报告 审议关于巡视31个省区市和新疆生产建设兵团情况的专题报告 中共中央总书记习近平主持会议新闻频道央视网 CCTV Thursday Evening News on last Politburo meeting befire Chinese New Year, recaps 2014 work, corruption crackdown the final paragraph of the report //  会议强调,全党要清醒认识反腐败斗争依然严峻复杂的形势,深刻认识全面从严治党的重大意义,担负起管党治党的责任。从严治党,关键在治、要害在严。巡视工作必须巩固成果、深化拓展,做到利剑高悬、震慑常在,用最坚决的态度减少腐败存量,用最果断的措施遏制腐败增量。要把巡视监督作为党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争的重要平台,作为上级党组织对下级党组织监督的重要抓手,作为党内监督和群众监督结合的重要方式,为全面从严治党提供有力支撑。

3. China’s People’s Liberation Army audits spending in bid to root out crime | South China Morning Post The People’s Liberation Army is launching a year-long retrospective audit to review military spending over the past two years to crack down on excessive behaviour in the world’s largest army. Army mouthpiece PLA Daily yesterday said the audit would focus on four things: pay orders of all military fund flows, schedules of disbursement, management of internal service venues, and details of spending for extra-budgetary funds.

4. China’s Internet Censorship Anthem Is Revealed, Then Deleted – NYTimes During the talent show portion of a Lunar New Year celebration held on Tuesday by the Beijing Internet Association and attended by many of the country’s leading media figures and Internet executives, the Cyberspace Administration debuted what can only be described as a semiofficial anthem. A throwback to revolutionary songs glorifying the state, the piece uses rich, if mixed, metaphors to boast of China’s influence over the Internet and its innovative prowess // The video is on Youtube《网信精神》. Hope US Internet CEOs trying to get into China won’t recommend their executives learn to sing this song…they are busy enough with their reading as it is…

Related: Do You Know Who’s in Charge of the Internet? | DC Inno wonder what the lawmakers and their staffs think of this video and its lyrics  // Monday is the beginning of Internet Governance Awareness Week, which passed the Senate by unanimous consent. The week also sees the first of many international meetings on changing who controls the Internet’s back end, this time in Singapore. Right now the Commerce Department, through the National Telecommunications and Information Administration holds on to Internet domain name functions, basically the index of numbers used to enable browsers to find the right place on the Internet. It works with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers to assign and manage the system. The plan has been to privatize that function with an international group of responsible, non-governmental stakeholders since 1997, but lawmakers in the last year or so have been seeking ways to slow down or stop the transfer.

Related: China Internet Restrictions Hurting Business, Western Companies Say – WSJ Nearly nine out of 10 European companies operating in China say the country’s Internet restrictions are hurting business, a new survey has found, providing another indication that Beijing’s intensified efforts to exert control online are having an impact beyond freedom of speech. Conducted by the European Chamber of Commerce between Jan. 28 and Feb. 6, the survey found 86% of companies had experienced negative business effects as a result of blocked websites or online tools, up 15% compared to June.

5. Xi Tells Capital to Shed Unneeded Functions, Integrate with Neighbors – Caixin Xi’s call for better integration of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei Province – in part to relieve Beijing of some of its overcapacity – has been heard before. In 2004, the central government announced a program for integrating the Jing Jin Ji region, as it is known, but little came of it. Xi then raised the idea in February last year, saying the coordinated development of the region is an important national strategy and urging the three governments to cooperate on environmental protection, infrastructure, transportation and industrial issues.

Related: 侠客岛:习总说了,北京不迁都,但… – 头条网 TouTiao.com 你关心的,才是头条! on Xi’s plans to clean up Beijing and move industries and function that do not fit with the vision of Beijing’s “four centers” –political center, cultural center, international exchange center, technical innovation center  //  从这些方面来看,习总提到的首都非核心功能的疏解就很有现实针对性了。京津冀协同发展的这一战略,绝不是甩包袱,不是只想着首都北京的事儿,这是国家集中力量探索一条区域协调发展、带动经济社会转型升级的新道路。当然,正如习总在今天的中央财经领导小组会议上所言,推进京津冀协同发展,是一个巨大的系统工程。久久为功。

Related: 北京削减应届落户指标 毕业生突遭解约政经频道财新网 Beijing has cut central SOEs quota for granting Beijing Hukous this year by 17% from the 2014 number, tough for college grads who thought they could get a Beijing Hukou through one of these jobs  //  人社部近日发文,要求“中央单位”2015年度高校毕业生进京落户的计划指标在2014年基础上再削减17%,以配合北京的人口控制政策。许多已签约的毕业生突然被解约

Related: 袁崇法:如何疏解北京非首都功能_观点频道_财新网 可疏解的“非首都功能”主要集中于公共服务领域,“疏解”要立足于本地的生产生活需求,不能“拍脑袋”决策;同时采用“公平、可选择”的人口管理政策,不能依靠行政手段强制“控人”

Related: 北京计划关停300家污染企业 北京的“四个中心”功能定位,即政治中心、文化中心、国际交往中心、科技创新中心。北京市规划委相关负责人接受采访时表示,只有明确区域内不同城市的职能定位,才能真正疏解北京的非首都核心职能,加快产业转移和功能转移。 据报道,京津冀发展顶层设计方案——《京津冀协同发展总规划》已完成,可能将于本月底正式发布。据了解《规划》现阶段已经相关部门审批,并下发至地方。《规划》将明确北京、天津、河北三地的区域定位,并将对产业布局、产业转移对象进一步明晰。此外,生态环境保护、交通一体化建设方面将有较大突破。

6. White House to File Trade Case Against China at W.T.O. Over Export Subsidies – NYTimes.com The reported Chinese subsidies affect American industries with powerful political constituencies on Capitol Hill, and with links to fence-sitters in Congress whose support the administration needs to win the trade negotiating authority it seeks. These industries include textiles, apparel, agriculture, chemicals, medical equipment and certain metals like titanium and specialty steels. The administration accused China of providing at least $1 billion in illegal subsidies over three years by providing so-called common service platforms to help exporters. The administration is also contending that China set up 179 “demonstration bases” for exporters in these industries, providing at least $635,000 at each of some of the bases.

7. Beijing Directive Cuts Into Debt Issuance – WSJ In Directive 43, China’s cabinet said it would make it easier for local authorities to issue government bonds directly in a bid to fund future spending. It added that Beijing will strip the function of raising funds for governments away from local vehicles, but stopped short of saying how existing debt will be dealt with. “People are still figuring out what criteria will be used for the upcoming local-debt restructuring exercise. It’s all not very clear now,” said Mr. Gao.

Related: 经济参考网 -三家城投公司海外发债或引跟风 专家称受公司评级、资金回流架构及汇率等制约,并非所有平台能复制 if domestic debt markets are closed, perhaps city investment firms can start tapping overseas debt markets. Economic Information says three already have  //  在海外设立全资子公司,由该公司作为主体发债”是主要模式 –青岛城市建设投资集团(以下简称青岛城投)8亿美元债日前发行完毕。这是继京投公司、珠海大横琴投资有限公司之后,第三家在境外市场发债融资的地方城投类公司。《经济参考报》记者获悉,在三家城投公司海外发债之后,已经有不少的平台公司跃跃欲试,进行相关询问,银行和评级机构也储备了不少项目,预计不久之后,市场上将出现更多类似案例。业内人士称,国内融资渠道受阻,海外普遍融资成本偏低。不过,海外融资也有更高“门槛”,且汇率风险不容小视,并非所有的平台都能复制这一模式。

8. Changes Forced on Qualcomm Seen Benefitting Big Phone Makers – Caixin so bad for new firms like Xiaomi?  //  Wang said one of the key changes is an end to Qualcomm asking for free access to its clients’ patents. Under the new plan, phone makers can use their patents to negotiate with Qualcomm for cross-licensing and get compensation for their technology. This change will give Chinese companies with a strong patent portfolio, such as Huawei and ZTE, greater power in talks with Qualcomm, he said, but will not benefit firms with fewer patents. Large Chinese manufacturers demand more of Qualcomm’s chips and patents so they can tap overseas markets, Wang said, but smaller ones usually turn to other suppliers. Thus, fast-growing smartphone producer Xiaomi, which has great demand for Qualcomm technologies to support its overseas expansion plan, may have less bargaining power because as a new player it has fewer patents.

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

Michael Pettis and perverse monetary policy | FT Alphaville In arguing his case, Pettis makes some useful observations about household saving habits. But his conclusion is, I think, mistaken. In China, like elsewhere, monetary easing quickens economic activity and raises inflation. That, at least, is what the academic evidence suggests…Note that another China bear, Paul Krugman, argues that it is precisely the abundance of labour that has kept returns on capital high in China’s past—and that it is the new scarcity of labour that will depress those returns from now on. Krugman agrees with Pettis on many things, as do I. But the two contradict each other on this point. Each China bear is bearish in his own way.

姚大锋:安邦受邀投资民生银行-时政频道-新华网 新京报:最近你们投资民生银行引发市场比较大的影响和关注。 姚大锋:投资民生银行是受民生银行董事长洪崎先生的邀请,是一种友好的市场行为,我们之间以前就有很好的合作。安邦对中国经济发展有信心,对中国资本市场长期看好,民生银行的民营机制具有独特的竞争力。同时,我们寿险的客户也需要稳定回报的投资标的。 我们购买民生银行的股票都是从公开市场买入的,是完全合规的市场化投资行为,这样一个公开透明的市场行为,个别媒体在未进行核实的情况下传播与事实不符的谣言,甚至对我们公司负责人进行人身攻击,其背后的目的令人深思。我们董事长和夫人有很好的涵养,很受我们尊敬,我们对制造谣言的媒体保留法律追诉的权利。

Waldorf Astoria sale marks tip of Chinese money into U.S. hotels | Reuters The closing comes on the heels of Monday’s announcement that another insurer from Beijing, the Sunshine Insurance Group, will purchase the luxurious Baccarat Hotel New York for $230 million. Investment from mainland China into U.S. hotels is expected to be about $5.1 billion this year, or triple the amount over the previous four years, according to JLL, a global real estate broker and advisory services company based in Chicago.

No Raises Unless 2015 Is More Profitable, Gov’t Tells SOEs – Caixin This is the first time the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC) has explicitly linked pay and profits at state-owned enterprises (SOEs). One expert says the emphasis on profitability may mean SASAC is concerned about a slowing economy. SASAC notified centrally administered SOEs on February 9 that they “must not increase the total amount of salaries” if their profit target this year is lower than last year’s profits.

Tesla Misses Estimates After China Sales Disappoint – Bloomberg Business Tesla said Wednesday that it’s working to make Chinese consumers more confident in purchasing a Model S by installing chargers at buyers’ homes before the vehicle is delivered. The automaker is also adding features for the Chinese market, where buyers often are driven. “We believe our new executive seats and second-row center console will be quite popular with new China customers,” Tesla said in its letter. // Audi figured that out decades ago. Did Tesla not know this before they launched?

Tesla’s China Communications Official Leaves in Less Than a Year – Bloomberg Business June Jin, vice president of communications, is no longer with the company, Tesla’s China spokesman Gary Tao said by telephone. He didn’t subsequently respond to further calls to his office or mobile phone seeking additional information. Jin didn’t answer calls to her mobile phone, nor immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment.

Australia tightens rules over foreign buying of agricultural land no mention of China but… //  Australia tightened rules on Wednesday over foreign ownership of its agricultural land amid concerns that it is losing control of its own food security, slashing the amount beyond which land purchases would require regulatory approval. From March 1, foreign purchases of agricultural land over A$15 million ($11.67 million) will be subject to regulatory approval from Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott said.

Shaanxi Government to Probe Missing Funds After Mass Investor Protests $1.2 Billion missing says this report  //  Some 170,000 people invested in the privately owned Xi’an United University’s expansion scheme during the past 10 years, but they now say there is no sign of the university’s highest-level leaders or their capital. Thousands of disgruntled investors converged on provincial government offices on Tuesday in the hope of pressuring the government to act, investors told RFA. “At least 10,000 people were there, and there were also army vehicles and soldiers,” an investor who asked to remain anonymous told RFA on Wednesday.

Survey of Foreign Companies in China Finds Pollution a Growing Problem – NYTimes expat hardship pay is back…never been on an expat package, here they are getting fat again, at least in Beijing  //  Concerns about pollution have been on the rise in recent years among foreigners and Chinese. In the survey, more than half of the respondents said pollution made it more difficult to recruit senior executives to work in China. The top problem for companies trying to attract or retain senior executives, however, was the expectation of being highly compensated for working in China.

经济参考网 – 26省下调今年城乡收入增长目标 22省份去年增收未达标,专家建议加大保障支出 据《经济参考报》记者梳理,与2014年相比,今年计有26个省(区、市)下调了城乡收入的同比增长目标,4省(区、市)保持不变,仅有西藏目标上调。计有22个省(区、市)2014年城乡收入增长未能同时达到年初设立的增长目标,其中8省(区、市)的城镇居民人均可支配收入和农民人均纯收入增长均不及预期。此外,在13个公开公布了人均可支配收入的省(区、市)中,实际增速慢于该省去年地区生产总值(GDP)增速的有9个。

India Passes China to Become Fastest-Growing Economy – India Real Time – WSJ Everyone from the World Bank to Goldman Sachs had predicted it wouldn’t happen for another two years but recent recalculations indicate that India has already dethroned China as the world’s fastest-growing big economy.

How the Club Med Bidding War Was Waged – WSJ The prolonged bidding war brought a cast of pugnacious characters into eight rounds of offers and counteroffers: Dueling with Fosun managing director Qian Jiannong, whose group spans industries from pharmacy to mining, was rival Italian financier Andrea Bonomi, whose family holding company is known for turning around Ducati Motor Holding SpA, the motorcycle maker. As the dust finally settles, Fosun’s success in seizing control of the iconic French company comes with a bewildering question: Why pay €24.60 ($27.85) a share—a nearly 80% premium over the Club Med stock price before the battle began—for an unprofitable company that last served a dividend in 2001?

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

In China, a women’s detective agency battles for wronged wives – The Washington Post In the search for her husband and his mistress, and in her long court battle with them, Zhang embarked on a journey that led her to establish what could be China’s only women’s detective agency, working on behalf of wronged wives.

各方点赞中国互联网发展与网络空间治理-中共中央网络安全和信息化领导小组办公室 “中国正在互联网治理国际舞台上发出强有力的声音。” ——新华网总裁田舒斌 ; “通过世界互联网大会等一系列国际性活动,中国互联网已经走向世界,并发挥巨大作用。” ——倪光南院士; “赞比亚面临的一些网络治理方面的问题与中国类似,比如网络谣言。中国对互联网的治理为赞比亚提供了一些经验。在来年,中国和赞比亚在互联网上的合作会继续加深。”——赞比亚大使努潘多·姆瓦佩

内容为王!解码中纪委新媒体走红“秘籍”_第一财经客户端 CBN on the CCDI’s success in building its web and mobile information operations

China Premier’s brother steps down from senior role at tobacco monopoly | South China Morning Post State Tobacco Monopoly Administration vice-director Li Keming had left his role, the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security said on its website yesterday, listing several other officials who had also stepped down from their positions. The ministry said Li had been appointed as chairman of a supervisory committee focused on large state-owned enterprises.

Portrait of Xi selected as test for university candidates- China.org.cn More than 12,000 undergraduate candidates applying to the art school of Beijing University of Technology were asked to sketch a portrait of President Xi Jinping. The test has attracted quite a lot of attention.

Deng Liqun, Divisive Chinese Communist Party Official, Dies at 99 – NYTimes.com Deng Liqun, who died on Tuesday in Beijing at 99, was a senior Communist Party propaganda and ideology official who began the 1980s as a powerful proponent of change, yet became one of the most vehement and divisive foes of China’s liberalization. His death, after many years spent bedridden, was reported by Xinhua, the state-run news agency.

China Labor Ties Fray as Grievances Rise, Economic Growth Slows – WSJ late last year, the International Center for Joint Labor Research, the first institute of its kind in China, was shut down, with little warning or explanation, people familiar with the situation said. Its demise has alarmed labor experts, including some union officials, who see it as a setback for industrial relations just as China is dealing with rising worker grievances and slowing economic growth. The center—jointly established by the University of California, Berkeley, and Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou City—sat on the front lines of labor tensions.

人民日报政文-谈高校意识形态,人民日报为何约请这几位? 当前,高校的宣传思想工作面临着新形势、新任务与新挑战。全球化、网络化的时代,国内外各种热点问题,意识形态领域的各种思潮,以及社会上的一些矛盾问题,都可能会对大学师生产生影响。 教育部部长袁贵仁在《关于进一步加强和改进新形势下高校宣传思想工作的意见》下发后,因几篇讲话与文章,就被推上舆论的风口浪尖。这也从侧面说明当前加强高校宣传思想工作的重要性和紧迫性。 明天出版的人民日报将刊发几位知名的教育主管部门负责人和高校书记、校长的观点,究竟是哪几位,他们又说了什么?我们先睹为快。

环球:“海外民运”哪儿给钱多去哪 内部互抓特务-凤凰新闻 Global Times looks at the overseas Chinese democracy movement, says lots of infighting, have lost support almost everywhere, been rejected by many, still paying the price for the earlier decisions to “betray the motherland”  //  【环球时报驻美国、法国、德国特约记者 林玉 萧遥 张昭东】“他们现在在哪儿?”去年年中,有美国媒体联系采访数名“民运”人士,一一介绍他们的背景和现状,或许是这些人远离聚光灯太久,以至于该报道也用这样的疑问做标题。“20年前,中国民运分子在德国等欧洲国家,可谓呼风唤雨,许多人就像‘明星’”,一名前“民运”组织负责人对《环球时报》记者说,如今“民运”人士早已风光不再。“衰弱期”“被遗忘”“为了钱而投靠台湾”是对他们的新描述。据《环球时报》记者调查了解,在中国跨越式大发展和外交空间不断拓宽的大背景下,无论是在被称为“欧洲民运大本营”的德国,还是“海外民运大本营”的美国,“民运分子”的影响力已基本谈不上,他们的“政治热情”实际已被生存焦虑吞没,在当地主流媒体以及华文媒体上甚至已经鲜见其踪迹。仅有的一点消息也与他们的内斗有关,或者是他们“逢中必反”的表演。他们当年背叛了祖国,后来又被海外周围社会抛弃了第二次。他们为当年的选择付出了代价。

共识网-陈有西:极左极右是中国改革的最大威胁|头条 我觉得对改革最大的威胁,来自于极左势力,他们反对一切改革,甚至主张回到文革。对改革的第二大威胁,来自于激进的极右派,他们不是在推船,而是在拆船,不是在补船,而是希望船早点沉掉。

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

王 毅:指导新形势下中国外交的强大思想武器–理论-人民网 Wang Yi in People’s Daily on reading Xi’s “Governance of China” as a strong “thought weapon” for China’s foreign policy

RI, China hunting down Xinjiang terrorism suspects in Poso | The Jakarta Post He said the police in Central Sulawesi have arrested four of the nine Uighur terrorism suspects who had entered Poso, while three had fled into the Poso jungle and two others escaped to Malaysia. The police said that the four arrestees initially admitted to have come from the Uighur region in China, but after further investigation, they retracted their statements and said they came from their hometown in Turkey. Saut said the police had difficulty questioning the four because they gave different statements. The nine were believed to be part of the Uighur separatist group that launched a terrorist attack on a train station in Kunming, Yunnan province in southwestern China, on March 1, 2014, killing 33 people and wounding 133 others. The five captured will likely be extradited to China as the two countries signed an extradition treaty in 2009.

China’s Rising Military Not Ready to Win Wars, U.S. Report Says – Bloomberg Business “Although the PLA’s capabilities have increased dramatically, its remaining weaknesses increase the risk of failure to successfully perform the missions the Chinese Communist Party leaders may task it to perform,” the report said. It cited Taiwan contingencies, maritime claim missions, protecting sea lines of communications and some non-war military operations.

China’s Incomplete Military Transformation: Assessing the Weaknesses of the People’s Liberation Army | U.S.-CHINA This report examines many of the weaknesses in the PLA’s human capital and organization realms, its combat capabilities across various domains, and China’s defense research and industrial complex. Furthermore, the report analyzes how these weaknesses affect the PLA’s performance of missions tasked by Beijing.

China firm ‘sure’ about Colombo project go-ahead : World, News – India Today In its first comments following the controversy surrounding the project, the China Communications Construction Company said on Wednesday it had “nothing to worry” about the future of the deal, although on Friday the Sri Lankan Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, told Parliament no decision had yet been taken.

Speak Softly and Carry a Big Ship | Foreign Policy – James Holmes Would Theodore Roosevelt have dispatched a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier to China for a port call? It’s not quite sailing softly, but it is a big stick. And the exercise of diplomacy — including the naval variety — isn’t just about maintaining cordial relations with friends. Roosevelt reached out to neutrals and prospective foes, as well as partners. Mounting a discreet display of force without getting another country’s dander up — which he did to great success with the German Kaiser Wilhelm II in 1902 — was a hallmark of Roosevelt’s diplomacy. And yet Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) — who calls America’s cowboy president his hero — recently urged the Pentagon to cancel just such a visit.

China Policy Institute Blog » Kyrgyzstan’s accession to the Eurasian Economic Union: Impact on cross-border trade with China Within this panoramic, Kyrgyzstan has often been described as playing a key role as intermediary between China, on one hand, and Kazakhstan and Russia on the other. Over the last couple of decades, the country has served as a transit and re-export channel for Chinese manufactures, the resulting trade accounting for a significant portion of her GDP, with some sources claiming that “half of our economy is dependent on re-exports of goods coming from China”.

人民日报评论-人民日报副总编辑卢新宁:三“E”搭建“心的丝路” People’s Daily Deputy Editor Lu Xinning talks to media workers about how to positively discuss the New Silk Road Initiatives, tells them to focus on the “three Es”: 第一个E,eyes,目光。; 第二个E,enclosure,空间。; 第三个E,exchange,交流。 //  2月11日,21世纪海上丝绸之路国际研讨会在泉州开幕。人民日报社副总编辑卢新宁在其中的“海上丝绸之路:价值理念与时代内涵”圆桌会议上,从媒体人的角度阐述了如何“讲好丝绸之路的现代故事”。

博卡斯大使夫妇中国春节问候—在线播放—优酷网,视频高清在线观看 Chinese New Year’s video greeting from Ambassador Baucus and his wife

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

Taiwan to Appoint New China Affairs Head, United Daily Reports – Bloomberg Business Taiwan’s top mainland China affairs official, who participated in the first meeting between the Beijing and Taipei governments, will be replaced by a defense department official, according to a newspaper report.

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Everything that’s new in iOS 8.3 | Cult of Mac This is only big news if you live in mainland China, but iOS 8.3 finally adds support for Apple Pay on UnionPay, bringing Apple’s mobile wallet to the country with the most iPhone 6 owners in the world.

Baidu Profit Misses Estimates on Spending to Lure More Users – Bloomberg Business The company forecast first-quarter sales of between 12.6 billion yuan and 13.1 billion yuan. That compares with the 13.5 billion-yuan average of seven analysts’ estimates. “The weak guidance is surprising,” Ella Ji, a New York-based analyst at Oppenheimer & Co., said in an e-mail. The quarter’s profit miss was partly due to spending on mobile user growth, Ji said. The forecast reflects an impact from the Lunar New Year holiday that begins next week and the rising contribution by mobile search, which generates less revenue than personal-computer search, Chief Financial Officer Jennifer Li said.

China App Distribution Market Share in Q4 2014 — China Internet Watch The top three app distribution players in China in the last quarter of 2014 are Baidu league, 360 league and Tencent’s with 42%, 22.3% and 21.8% market share respectively according to EnfoDesk.

澎湃新闻-影视业腐败潜规则暴露:安徽广电江苏卫视高管被带走 Thepaper on corruption crackdown in TV and Film industry and its exposure of some of the “unwritten rules”  //  安徽广电腐败“窝案”再扩围。 2月9日,安徽广播电视台副台长赵红梅被该省检察机关带走,此前,安徽广播电视台已有5名中高层干部涉贪腐落马,其中包括今年2月4日,被安徽省检察院决定以受贿罪逮捕的安徽广播电视台原台长张苏洲。 江苏卫视也中枪。 有消息称,江苏卫视副总监兼节目采购部主任张彦以及节目采购部副主任江红等人,被有关部门带走接受调查,原因是涉及一宗电视剧的采购。 十八大后,以央视郭振玺案为代表,广电系统被查处的大案不断。 哪些影视业大佬落马?哪些腐败潜规则被中纪委盯上?

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

The English Test for Chinese Middle School Students: Could You Do It? | The Nanfang One such English examination was leaked online, and people were shocked at how hard it was. The test is from the Nanjing Foreign Language School, and many felt the extensive English section was too difficult to complete, even for adults. Do you have what it takes to get into the Nanjing Foreign Language School? Try out the following questions:

Filming China’s Dark Side – Video – NYTimes.com Zhao Liang’s films, which explore the relationship between the Chinese government and its citizens, have received critical acclaim abroad, but are not screened in China.

Alibaba’s Latest Marketing Campaign Supports Same-Sex Marriage | TechCrunch Alibaba marketplace Taobao will celebrate Valentine’s Day by sending gay couples to the U.S. and other countries where same-sex marriage is legal. To be sure, the event, We Do, is a publicity ploy like Alibaba’s recently announced drone pilot program. We Do, however, is much more notable because it is unusual for a Chinese company to publicly support gay rights.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

Do Not Resuscitate: China’s Elites Push for a Better Way to Die – Bloomberg Business The group’s goal: to help patients say no to certain medical interventions toward the end and seek palliative care for comfort. For the past nine years it has promoted living wills. This year they are widening their mission to train doctors and volunteers to provide end of life support for terminally ill patients. Led by Chen Xiaolu, the son of a former general, and the offspring of other former officials, the association includes medical experts and social celebrities, and also receives support from children of party veterans like Huang. // interesting Bloomberg makes no mention of Caixin’s long story on this topic from early January: Children of Party Luminaries Raise Awareness for Dying with Dignity.

China’s Health Insurance Reform and Disparities in Healthcare Utilization and Costs: A Longitudinal Analysis | RAND China’s economic success during the past 30 years was not mirrored in its health care system. As a result, the rural-urban disparities in health insurance coverage and the related health care areas became prominent. Since the late 1990s, China has been expanding insurance coverage, in order to provide accessible and affordable health care to all residents. This study analyzes whether the insurance expansion reduces rural-urban disparities in terms of health care utilization and financial protection.

 

BEIJING *

Thousands of Beijing’s ‘rat tribe’ underground residents evicted – Telegraph But authorities have been clearing out residents over the past three years in the first stage of a planned mass eviction, according to the Beijing News. Around 7,250 makeshift houses were found on sites spanning an area of some seven million square metres.

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