The Sinocism China Newsletter 03.02.15

Back in Beijing, today’s issue is a long catchup.

Today’s Links:

The Essential Eight *

1. The film that is going to change China | Business Spectator The film reveals the power of the big three oil companies that threaten to shut down supplies if the central government agencies impinge on their turf. Even the most powerful National Development and Reform Commission, Beijing’s key economic planning agency and price regulator looks less omnipotent in front of the big oil bullies. Who would have thought that?  The documentary also shines a light on the so-called zombie companies, mostly steel mills, who are relying on government handouts and cheap loans to survive. It talks about these companies’ crude and basic products that no wants to buy as well as their minuscule margins. “10 million tonnes of steel production equates to 100,000 jobs, who dares to shut it down”, says one local official. // hard to imagine this was a truly independent undertaking given Chai’s decade plus at CCTV, the sensitivity of the subject and the timing just ahead of the opening of the CPPCC and NPC meetings. If that is the case, it makes this even more interesting

Related: Chai Jing’s review: Under the Dome – Investigating China’s Haze 柴静雾霾调查:穹顶之下 – YouTube with English subtitles

Related: 2015-02-28期 《穹顶之下》 – 腾讯视频 “Under the Dome”, well over 100 million views on Tencent’s video site, far more than any other site. The power of Wechat, it had taken over my Wechat streams by Saturday night

Related: 人民网专访柴静:“人去做什么,是因为心底有爱惜”–人民电视–人民网 People’s Daily Online interviews Chai Jing about Under the Dome…they first released the film along with Youku

Related: China’s Coal Use and Estimated CO2 Emissions Fell in 2014 | Barbara A. Finamore Good news! China’s coal consumption fell by 2.9 percent in 2014, the first drop in 14 years, according to official Chinese energy statistics released yesterday. Glen Peters of the Global Carbon Project calculates that China’s CO2 emissions have also fallen, by 0.7 percent, for the first time this century. So contrary to grumbling in the U.S. Congress about the strength, or even existence, of China’s climate commitments, it’s clear that China’s efforts to cut its coal consumption and carbon emissions are not only real, but are already producing results.

Related: Can Market Mechanisms Clear China’s Bad Air? – Caixin The Chinese government recently responded to rising public discontent over environmental degradation by introducing tougher rules for industrial emissions. Meanwhile, a non-governmental organization and a state-run newspaper are coordinating a parallel fight against industrial pollution based on market mechanisms. Trusting that the equities market can push companies to do good, the environmental track records of publicly listed companies are now being compiled and publicized by the Beijing-based NGO Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs (IPE) and the state-run Securities Times newspaper.// environmental shares up big Monday on back of Chai Jing’s video

2. China orders two local governments to punish polluting steel mills | Reuters Inspectors from China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection (MEP) last week summoned mayors from the cities of Linyi in the eastern province of Shandong and Chengde in the northern province of Hebei, urging them to crack down on firms that have violated environment laws, the ministry said on its website (www.mep.gov.cn). “We have to fully implement the law … to shut down those enterprises which haven’t taken any environmental protection measures and haven’t run environment protection equipment,” MEP official Gao Zhenning told state television channel CCTV.

Related: 陈吉宁:把环保执法过软翻过来_京华时报 昨天下午,在被正式任命为环保部部长48小时后,陈吉宁在环保部与20多家媒体进行了座谈。据了解,这是他接任部长后的第一次对外活动。陈吉宁在会上表示,过去环保执法过松过软,今后要让守法成为常态。应媒体要求,陈吉宁对柴静发布的有关雾霾的纪录片《穹顶之下》也给予了回应。陈吉宁表示自己当天晚上就已完整看完,昨天上午还专门给柴静发短信感谢,感谢她唤起全民对环境问题的关注。

3. Mutual Suspicion Mars Tech Trade With China – NYTimes in many ways, China seems to hold all the cards. China has twice as many Internet users as the United States, a market expected to account for half of all information technology spending globally in 2015. Its industrial policy gives the government strong control over the economy. And its own tech companies are growing in size and capability. American companies — eager to do business in the expanding market — are divided on how to deal with the Chinese, a weakness China has cannily exploited over the last decade.

Related: China draft counterterror law strikes fear in foreign tech firms | Reuters several U.S. technology executives and industry sources who spoke on condition of anonymity said they feared the security law would be more stringent than the bank regulations – and more sensitive to discuss – because it was rooted in public security considerations. The vague, open-ended requirements for cooperating with law enforcement appeared the most worrying, as well as the possibility of steep penalties or jail time for non-compliance, according to one executive. “It’s the equivalent of the Patriot Act on really, really strong steroids,” said one U.S. industry source, referring to the anti-terrorism legislation enacted under the George W. Bush administration following the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

Related: WTO rules make it difficult for Cisco and Apple to challenge Chinese government ‘black list’ | South China Morning Post Complex World Trade Organisation (WTO) regulations will make it very difficult for the US government and major technology companies to take legal action against Beijing’s decision to drop Apple and Cisco from its approved state procurement lists.  When the Chinese government joined the WTO in December 2001, Beijing did not sign up to a plurilateral treaty on government procurements. As a result, China is able to remove any foreign brands that the government doesn’t like from its state procurement lists with little potential WTO blowback.

Related: Gemalto Doesn’t Know What It Doesn’t Know – The Intercept China Mobile, which uses Gemalto SIM cards, has more wireless network customers than any company in the world. This week it announced it was investigating the breach and the Chinese government said it was “concerned” about the Gemalto hack. “We are opposed to any country attempting to use information technology products to conduct cyber surveillance,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said. “This not only harms the interests of consumers but also undermines users’ confidence.”

Related: The United States Is Angry That China Wants Crypto Backdoors, Too | Motherboard “You can’t have it both ways,” Trevor Timm, the co-founder and the executive director of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, told Motherboard. “If the US forces tech companies to install backdoors in encryption, then tech companies will have no choice but to go along with China when they demand the same power.”

Related: Commentary: Washington’s politicalization of business with Beijing destined to backfire – Xinhua And indeed, a sovereign government may be justified in saying no to foreign investment out of national security concerns, yet such a mechanism should never be exploited or abused as protectionism in disguise, or used as a political weapon against another country. In a move that seems to the follow U.S. lead, its Asian ally the Philippines has announced suspending a Chinese company’s involvement in the construction of the country’s power grid, also citing “national security concerns”. This is not only a flagrant violation of business ethics, but also lays bare Manila’ s short-sightedness and asininity. The United States, the world’s sole superpower and the largest economy, has long portrayed itself as a victim of plots and conspiracies from the outside world

4. Draft Chinese law paves way for counter-terror operations abroad | Reuters Experts said Article 76 of the draft anti-terrorism law would allay concerns among the military elite about the lack of a formal mechanism for carrying out such operations, as well as mark a shift in foreign policy thinking and military doctrine. The article is a small part of a draft law chiefly aimed at combating terrorism at home that was made public in November. It has undergone a second review by a parliamentary committee, and is likely to be adopted in the coming weeks or months.

Related: How China Defines Terrorism | The Diplomat Dr. Zunyou Zhou, head of the China section at Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, is the author of Balancing Security and Liberty: Counter-Terrorism Legislation in Germany and China (2014).

5. The Evolution of Xi Jinping’s ‘Four Comprehensives’ – NYTimes Mr. Xi’s slogan is, like these, capable of shifting emphasis to ride out political tides, said Perry Link, a professor at the University of California, Riverside, who has written a study of Chinese political language. “Exactly what it means could be put to various purposes,” Mr. Link said in a telephone interview. “You’re automatically correct even though it’s not clear what you said. It provides, as it were, a theoretical cudgel with which you can pick your own fights.”

Related: 国平:奏响“四个全面”的两会主旋律-新华网 中国特色社会主义如何发展?具有许多新的历史特点的伟大斗争如何开展?令亿万人民憧憬的中国梦如何一步一步铺就现实的宏伟画卷?“四个全面”正是着眼这样的重大理论和实践问题,为顺利推进党和国家事业发展提供了科学答案。

Related: 学习习近平“四个全面”战略思想–时政–人民网 People’s Daily Online now has a microsite for the Four Comprehensives

Related: Rise of China’s middle class will not challenge Communist Party: state media | South China Morning Post On the second day of its efforts to disseminate Xi’s governing vision for the country ahead of the nation’s annual parliamentary session, the party’s mouthpiece expounded the rationale behind the theory as: building a middle-class society, breaking up vested interest groups, restoring strong governance in accordance with laws, and eliminating the main risk to the party.

6. Sex, Lies and Espionage: Did a Professor Spy for the FBI? – Bloomberg Business When Dianne Mercurio first knocked on Dajin Peng’s door, he was searching the Internet for the best way to kill himself. Mercurio, an FBI agent, had other ideas. Mercurio knew Peng was in trouble with the University of South Florida, where he taught international business and ran the Confucius Institute, a cultural program funded by a Chinese government affiliate. USF had placed him on leave for alleged mismanagement there. As they strolled outside his apartment, she asked Peng, a Chinese-born U.S. citizen, to serve his adopted country.

7. Closer Look: Local Officials Have Little Love for National Hukou Reform – Caixin The central government may want to revamp the household registration system, but financial concerns mean many cities are not on board with the idea // 户改风向偏紧 厦门为何取消四类落户政经频道财新网 

8. Chinese Dissident Accuses Top U.S. Diplomat of Lying | Foreign Policy In a copy of Chen’s unpublished memoir, The Barefoot Lawyer, obtained by Foreign Policy, Chen details the promises U.S. officials made to him — and then broke. According to Chen, Kurt Campbell, the then-assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific Affairs and the highest-ranking United States diplomat directly involved in the affair, said that he and then-American Ambassador Gary Locke would personally reunite the dissident with his family.

 

Business, Economy And Trade *

China February HSBC PMI at seven-month high | Reuters Activity in China’s factory sector edged up to a seven-month high in February but export orders shrank and deflationary pressures persisted, a private business survey showed, adding to the view that yet more interest rate cuts will be needed.

Economists React: China Rate Cut Effects Likely Muted, Reforms in Focus  – WSJ The People’s Bank of China said over the weekend that, effective Sunday, it has lowered benchmark loan rate and deposit rate by a quarter percentage point each, while allowing banks to offer deposit rates up to 130% of the benchmark rate from 120% previously. Although the announcement came earlier than some had expected, the move has been widely expected by economists and the market. China’s economy is struggling with a prolonged property market downturn as well as rising deflation risks. Thus the impacts will likely be more limited than its previous rate cut in November—the first such move in more than two years.

Minsheng Tries Weathering a Maelstrom – Caixin A source close to the bank said a recent inspection of the bank’s operations in the northern province of Shanxi found a high ratio of bad-to-serviceable loans to energy, metallurgy and real estate companies. A significant number of bad loans may have been issued to Highsee Iron and Steel Group Co. Ltd., Shanxi’s largest private steel manufacturer. In March 2014, sources close to Highsee said debt troubles had ensnared the steelmaker, as the country’s steel industry struggled financially due to overcapacity woes. Highsee may be unable to repay up to 20 billion yuan in loans, the source said, including up to 7 billion yuan owed to Minsheng. The inspection of the Shanxi branch also found that many loans that are now problematic were issued without proper scrutiny by credit reviewers at Minsheng headquarters.

经济参考网 -地方政府今年投资计划规模已超20万亿 钱从哪里来 Economic Information says local governments have at least 2 Trillion in investment plans, but questions where they will find the money  //  据不完全统计,从目前已公布投资规模的省市来看,各地安排的投资计划规模已达20万亿元。

Chinese Investment in the United States: Recent Trends in Real Estate, Industry, and Investment Promotion | U.S.-CHINA This report examines recent trends in Chinese investment in the United States, drawing on interviews with state officials. It begins with a general review of Chinese outbound investment patterns, and then looks in more detail at U.S. real estate, industry, and investment promotion. The paper identifies important implications for the United States, including the potential to strengthen regulation of the EB-5 visa program and improve federal support of state efforts.

Delay to planned launch of Fujian free-trade zone | South China Morning Post The launch of a free-trade zone in Guangdong could be delayed, sources close to the provincial government said, after a similar zone in Fujian was postponed abruptly yesterday. The Fujian free-trade zone was expected to be launched today, but Xiong Yanliang, the director of the leading group for the effort, said the project had been rescheduled to an unspecified date.

China takes hard line on taxing foreigners on share gains: sources | Reuters China’s tax authorities have alarmed foreign investors with a proposed capital-gains tax which would take 10 percent of their share trading profits without taking into account any of their trading losses, according to sources briefed by tax officials. The plan would apply to investors who have traded stocks and other equity-based instruments through China’s two largest portfolio investment schemes for foreigners, and would be levied retrospectively on profits made over the past five years, the sources said.

Lumber Liquidators Sold Illegal Flooring, ‘60 Minutes’ Reports – Bloomberg Business The flooring comes from mills in China, the CBS show said on Sunday. The investigation used undercover reporters and hidden cameras to show that managers at three factories admitted to using false labeling that made it look like flooring produced for Lumber Liquidators met regulations when it didn’t, the program said.

Prime Capital’s 500.com Bet Derailed After 41% Drop – Bloomberg Business going to get worse, more lottery suspensions in the works  //  500.com has lost 73 percent since September, wiping out more than $800 million in market value, as the government increased scrutiny of the industry and investors questioned the company’s business prospects.

Experts Split on Whether Merger of Taxi App Firms Breaks Law – Caixin  In October, the Supreme People’s Court upheld a Guangdong court’s ruling that cleared Tencent of a monopoly even though it held a dominant share of the instant messaging market. Dominance is a key factor in government decisions on monopolies. However, some analysts said that such strength is a common feature of the software industry and does not necessarily keep out other players. They say the market shares held by Didi and Kuaidi will not stop other firms from entering the taxi-hailing app market.

White House sees China as trump card in trade debate | Reuters “It’s a choice between us writing it and, frankly, China writing it, which I think is very compelling to many members of Congress,” Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews said during a call to announce more support for rural exporters, such as by promoting more trade shows and workshops. The White House is lobbying hard to win support for trade in Congress, particularly among Democrats worried about the impact of trade deals on U.S. jobs.

The SEC caves on China | China Accounting Blog | Paul Gillis disgraceful  //  So today we have different rules for Chinese companies that list in the US than we have for others. Not only is the SEC dependent on Chinese regulators to decide what documents they can see, the PCAOB remains unable to conduct inspections of auditors. But the different rules go beyond auditing. Other rules, like Regulation Financial Disclosure, do not apply to US listed Chinese firms, creating an unfair market for investors.

The West: Source of All Evil, Including Chinese Scion’s Boob Joke | Foreign Policy so Wang will divest all his hollywood interests?  //  When China’s second-richest man Wang Jianlin, a real estate mogul worth $29.4 billion, sat down with state media for an Oprah-style interview this week, he was clearly in crisis-management mode. A little over a week earlier, his son, Wang Sicong, had sparked a scandal by telling reporters at a Valentine’s Day charity event in Beijing that what he looked for in potential dates was a “big rack.”.. But the real scandal, at least according to the elder Wang, is Western influence

Oil Giants Dispute Reports that Gov’t Is Considering Mergers – Caixin The Wall Street Journal reported on February 17 that Chinese authorities are considering consolidating the oil industry. One option is merging the two largest oil companies, China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) and China Petrochemical Corp (Sinopec). The report cited unnamed officials with knowledge of the matter as saying that other options include combining two other major firms, China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC) and Sinochem Group…the publicity officers of CNPC and Sinopec both told Caixin they had not heard of any plans. Several sources close to the oil companies and government regulators told Caixin that policymakers are studying ways to reform the oil and gas sector, but said calling this a merger of oil companies would be wrong.

 

Politics And Law *

“Two sessions” anticipated amid new political, economic landscape – Xinhua Since Wednesday, the Communist Party of China mouthpiece the People’s Daily has been running a series of editorials to elaborate on and promote President Xi Jinping’s new political theory ahead of the two sessions. The theory, called the “Four Comprehensives”, refers to “comprehensively” building a moderately prosperous society, deepening reform, advancing rule of law and strictly governing the Party. The four aspects are strategic objectives outlined in Xi’s blueprint for China’s future. Analysts believe the two sessions will provide an ideal occasion to discuss the new theory and help pool strength to implement it.

Xi urges the promotion of good values – Xinhua President Xi Jinping has urged officials and public figures to lead by example and promote good values among Chinese citizens, especially the younger generation. Xi made the remarks Saturday while meeting with representatives from cities, towns, villages and units honored by the Central Commission for Guiding Ethic and Cultural Progress. “Society is witnessing a collision of thoughts, ideas and ever-changing new technology. We should carefully analyze and take advantage of the trend to ensure that the moral and cultural drive is full of energy,” Xi said.

Xi Jinping’s quotes of classics published – Xinhua China has published a book featuring President Xi Jinping’s quotations from ancient stories and classics in his speeches and articles. The compiling of the book was led by Yang Zhenwu, head of the Communist Party of China’s flagship newspaper People’s Daily. It selected 135 classic stories most quoted by Xi, which also reflected the president’s thoughts on state governance. The book is suitable for Party and government officials, staff of government-affiliated agencies, teachers and people interested in Chinese classic culture, according to the compilers. // I went looking for this book Sunday at the local Xinhua Book Store, no sign of it. And if they are trying to build a cult of Xi using books the Xinhua Book store manager should be fired…the section of political books including Xi’s and other leaders (and a Chinese edition of the collected Works of Putin 2012-14) are behind the toy section on a dusty shelf…

《习近平用典》出版:常提儒家名言 苏轼名句最多|领导干部|干部_凤凰资讯 Xi likes to quote Su Dongpo, per the new book of his sayings  //  为编写该书,主创团队搜集了时间跨度长达27年的习近平所有著述及重要讲话、文章,包括《摆脱贫困》、《干在实处走在前列》、《之江新语》、《习近平谈治国理政》及其2007年以来发表的重要讲话、文章,遴选出135则典故,分敬民、为政、立德、廉政等13个篇章。每则典故采用解读、释义结合,解读部分阐述了习近平用典的现实意义,释义部分解说古典名句的出处和义理。

媒体:从习近平用典看治国理政思路|群众路线|领导干部_凤凰资讯 习近平在多次场合引用过这句古语,要表达的都是“多样性”的思想。一棵树上,找不到完全相同的树叶;一片沙漠中,找不到完全一样的沙粒。各国有各国的国情,各国有各国的历史,怎么可能千篇一律?既有卢浮宫也有故宫,既有金字塔也有大雁塔,人类文明的多样性才能吸引眼球,这是中国人2000多年前就认识到了的道理。正所谓“鞋子合不合脚,自己穿了才知道”,每个国家都可以也应该根据国情选择适合自己的道路

习近平给改革划了三条硬杠杠–人民日报客户端 朱利 春节过后的首次公开活动,习近平选择主持召开中央全面深化改革领导小组第十次会议。 熟悉深改组的人都知道,只要开会,研究的都是大事,这次也不例外。2000多字的会议通稿,透露出的信息量很大,为方便读者了解,我们把最重要的信息概括为“3”和“4”。

习近平论改革:消除“中梗阻” 跑出最先一公里新闻腾讯网 人民网北京2月28日电 (万鹏)昨日上午,习近平总书记主持召开了中央全面深化改革领导小组第十次会议,在此次会议上他强调,要“处理好改革‘最先一公里’和‘最后一公里’的关系,突破‘中梗阻’,防止不作为,把改革方案的含金量充分展示出来,让人民群众有更多获得感。”众所周知,只要中央全面深化改革领导小组开会,研究的都是涉及国家改革进程的大事。春节过后,总书记的首次公开活动,他选择主持召开中央全面深化改革领导小组第十次会议,又恰逢全国两会召开前,2000多字的会议新闻稿,透露出的信息非常丰富。

河北官员遭情妇举报 调情短信及照片曝光高清图集新浪网 Hebei provincial NDRC official outed by his mistress..quite the long underwear he has in these pictures

China’s top court rejects judicial independence as ‘erroneous thought’ | World news | The Guardian A meeting of the supreme court’s party committee on Wednesday said China would draw boundaries with the west’s notion of “judicial independence” and “separation of powers”, the state-run China News Service said. “Resolutely resist the influence of the west’s erroneous thought and mistaken viewpoints,” it said on its website, citing the meeting. China’s top judge, Zhou Qiang, “stressed the need to unswervingly take the road of socialism with Chinese characteristics”, it said, reiterating Beijing’s stance that it is the best way to govern the world’s most populous nation.

Briefing Release | TGAP Process Explores Multilevel Governance as a Framework for Tibet Policy Dialogue | Tibet Governance Project The Tibet Governance Project at the Elliott School of International Affairs hosted the 7th round of meetings of the Tibet Governance and Practice (TGAP) process from November 12-17, 2014. The objective of the November round of meetings was to engage Chinese State Council policy researchers from Beijing in an exploratory discussion about “multilevel governance” as a framework for research exchange and policy dialogue on Tibet in the next phase of the TGAP process.

《你是我的呀啦嗦》拉萨市公安局版小苹果_视频在线观看 – 56.com video of Lhasa public security bureau performing a version of little Apple

中宣部领导层再调整 崔玉英任副部长政经频道财新网 Cui Yuying, a Tibetan woman, promoted to vice minister of propaganda

China ejects spy chief from group of advisers: Xinhua | Reuters Ma was director of the ministry’s “No.8 Bureau”, charged with counter-espionage surveillance of foreigners, chiefly diplomats, businessmen and reporters, a source with ties to the leadership had told Reuters. He has since been replaced by Qiu Jin, a vice minister of state security. The South China Morning Post newspaper, based in Hong Kong, said Ma was closely tied to Ling Jihua, the target of a graft investigation last year and one-time senior aide to former President Hu Jintao.  //  so the rumors in overseas Chinese media about Qiu Jin are not true?

A Shot at Solving China’s Angry Worker Problem – WSJ Regulations for “collective contracts” adopted by the Standing Committee of the People’s Congress in southern China’s Guangdong Province took effect on January 1, 2015, giving employees more leeway to initiate collective bargaining with their employers.  Observers in the government, chambers of commerce, the state-backed All-China Federation of Trade Unions and workers’ rights organizations will be watching to see whether the new rules represent a meaningful step forward in advancing labor rights.

Prince Qing comes back to life but who is he? | South China Morning Post The article’s republication ignited a frenzy of speculation, with some seeing it as a play on the “Qing” name and linking the prince with former Politburo Standing Committee member Zeng Qinghong . Others thought it was alluding to other leaders, such as former premier Li Peng . Hong Kong-based political commentator Johnny Lau Yui-siu said the article did not have an obvious target but was a general warning to all tigers. “The article has helped to sustain the momentum of [President] Xi Jinping’s anti-graft campaign – it’s been picked up by so many domestic and overseas media,” he said. “But I don’t think the article is alluding to any heavyweight like Zeng or Li.”

大清”裸官”庆亲王的作风问题————要闻——中央纪委监察部网站 the original cited by the SCMP above // 庆亲王奕劻工作能力很差,名声也不太好,官运却好得出奇。自1884年到大清倒台的27年中,他先后负责外事、海军、财政等重要部门,最后升到首席军机大臣、内阁总理大臣,当然忙得要命。 但是庆亲王业余时间更忙,忙啥呢?吃饭、打牌、投资。 请客和吃请是他每天必修课,主题多是庆贺生日。当时成功人士都是老婆一群、孩子一堆,所以庆亲王不是在主办宴会,就是在出席宴会的路上。 然后就是打麻将。为了讨老佛爷喜欢,他竟然把麻将牌引入宫中,手把手地将搓麻技艺推广到人,从宫女到太监,无不乐此不疲。

人民网舆情监测室–【政情】撰文狠批大清“裸官”庆亲王的“习骅”是谁 那么,“习骅”是谁? 是不是某些高大上机构的笔名,类似国平、仲祖文、任仲平……这类频现于官媒的金光闪闪的笔名,其实不然,习骅是一个真人真名。

老师回忆习近平的学生时代:中学时喜读杜甫爱踢球–新闻报道-人民网 Xi’s middle school teacher says he liked to read Du Fu and play football

学而信 学而用 学而行_求是网 编者按:今年1月5日召开的全国宣传部长会议明确指出,要持续深入地学习宣传贯彻习近平总书记系列重要讲话精神,在领会精神实质上下功夫,在入脑入心上下功夫,做到学而信、学而用、学而行。为此,本刊特邀三位同志加以阐释。

抢收红包,没那么简单——五问网络红包-新闻中心频道-新华网 Xinhua has five questions about digital red envelopes, including whether they can be used for corruption and evading taxes

中共反腐出“新招” 上海先啃“硬骨头”|改革|党建_凤凰资讯 这并不是上海的名字第一次出现在中共中央全面深化改革领导小组的方案中。之前,与它有关的有两次,一次谈的是司法改革,另一个则事关上海自贸区可复制的经验推广。 这一次是第三次。在题为《上海市开展进一步规范领导干部配偶、子女及其配偶经商办企业管理工作的意见》的方案中,由于直接涉及既得利益,因此也被外界解读为中央欲让上海“先行先试”,啃下深化改革、惩治腐败“硬骨头”。

Ideology: Class struggle | The Economist The education minister and the party leaders of Peking and Tsinghua universities are not known as hardliners. Mr Yuan has spoken positively in the past about Western-style teaching methods which promote critical ways of thinking. One academic at Peking University says “everyone knows” that the three men do not believe their own words about the dangers of Western influences. Few expect the crackdown to affect teaching in such areas as science and medicine which do not touch on politically sensitive issues, even though they rely on Western textbooks. But the campaign is likely to prompt at least some lecturers to be more cautious.

In China, Civic Groups’ Freedom, and Followers, Are Vanishing – NYTimes These are perilous days for independent civic groups in China, especially those that take on politically contentious causes like workers’ rights, legal advocacy and discrimination against people with AIDS. Such groups have long struggled to survive inside China’s ill-defined, shifting margins of official tolerance, but they have served as havens for socially committed citizens. Under President Xi Jinping, however, the Communist Party has forcefully narrowed the bounds of accepted activity, setting off fears that these pockets of greater openness in China’s generally restrictive political landscape may soon disappear.

赵洪祝:深入推进党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争的强大思想武器—中央纪委监察部网站 经中央批准,中央纪委和中央文献研究室编辑出版了《习近平关于党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争论述摘编》。这是党和国家政治生活中的一件大事,对于坚持党要管党、从严治党,深入开展党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争,确保党始终成为中国特色社会主义事业的坚强领导核心,具有重大的现实意义和深远的历史意义。各级党组织和广大党员干部要把学习贯彻习近平总书记关于党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争重要论述作为政治任务,同深入贯彻习近平总书记系列重要讲话精神结合起来,增强责任意识、忧患意识、担当意识,清醒认识形势,明确努力方向,推动党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争深入发展。

中纪委网站:有高官被查后称没感觉到党组织存在–时政–人民网 人民网北京3月2日电 3月1日,中央纪委监察部网站刊登文章《党风廉政建设和反腐败斗争形势与任务之一 形势决定任务》。文章称,有什么样的形势就有什么样的任务。认清形势,是作出正确决策的前提,也是掌握规律、赢得胜利的条件。落实好十八届中央纪委五次全会精神,就必须冷静清醒、实事求是地分析判断形势,这样才能明确任务,把握正确方向。

党媒刊新加坡国立大学学者文章:习近平带中国进入大变革时代舆论场澎湃新闻-The Paper Professor Zheng Yongnian sings the praises of Xi’s plans for reform in article published in People’s Daily app

 

Foreign And Defense Affairs *

16 PLA major generals, many of them newly promoted, under investigation for military corruption | South China Morning Post At least 16 People’s Liberation Army major generals have been taken away for investigation in relation to graft cases involving their former superiors, according to sources close to the military. Two independent sources close to the PLA told the South China Morning Post that most of the officers were either secretaries or relatives of former military commanders or senior officers.

Chinese military vows continuous anti-corruption efforts – Xinhua The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) pledged to continue the fight against corruption in its education campaign. Inspections and auditing will continue and corrupt military personnel will receive harsher punishment, the Central Military Commission (CMC) affirmed. PLA’s Party leaders were told to address the negative impact on the army’s ideological, political and organizational work of former CMC vice chairman Xu Caihou’s graft case. The leaders were also reminded to ensure honest and transparent reporting on “personal affairs”, and relatives and subordinates that worked closely with them.

Asia Unbound » Personnel and Policy in U.S. Policymaking Toward China New York City, where I live, has a deal culture in which the emphasis is on outcome not optics. So let’s consider the outcomes of this purported “B” team. Across the board, the “B” team has delivered an “A” performance on China policy

Chinese Leader Is Putting His Alliances on Parade – NYTimes.com Even if another valued guest, and Washington’s ally, the South Korean leader, Park Geun-hye, accepts China’s invitation — she gets along well with Mr. Xi, and her presence is greatly desired, Chinese foreign policy experts say — all eyes will be on the chemistry between Mr. Putin and Mr. Xi. A senior Obama administration official said the United States would be “staying as far away as possible” from the parade.

China’s Air Force Sets Up in High Schools to Train Teen Top Guns – Bloomberg Business Flight training will be provided for about 1,000 successful applicants, age 14 to 16, in selected high schools, according to a statement jointly issued by the ministries of education, public security and the PLA general political department on Thursday. The training will start later this year. The student pilot training program is the most recent in a slew of initiatives the Chinese air force has taken to induct young talent to build an “integrated air and space capability” and to forge greater balance among the PLA’s land, sea and air branches, as urged by President Xi Jinping. // and a catchy new ad

Xinhua officially launches global social media presence – Xinhua Xinhua News Agency officially unveiled its global social media presence on Sunday, after rebranding its Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts under the unified name “New China.” From today, following a year of testing, Xinhua will share China and world news around the clock on its social media accounts. Content will also include Xinhua photographs and videos. The social media drive was launched in response to a wider global trend of media transformation. Xinhua will use these online channels to better communicate the voices of China, while establishing the agency as a figurehead that can respond to the concerns of the international community, a high-level Xinhua executive said.

China’s Great Firewall is demolishing foreign websites—and nobody knows why – Quartz isn’t this a violation of other nations’ cyber sovereignty?  //  The surge to Hockenberry’s site on Jan. 20 preceded a major internet disruption in China on Jan. 21 that was conclusively caused by GWF DNS poisoning, according to Greatfire.org, a group that fights Chinese internet censorship. Much of the internet was inaccessible to Chinese users for several hours as most of the country’s web requests—equivalent to hundreds of thousands per second—were redirected to a single IP address, used by Dynamic Internet Technology, a small US company that helps users circumvent the GFW. The company’s president speculated that DNS rerouting was not an intentional attack on his company, but rather the result of human error.

Russia, China help stabilize global situation: Lavrov – People’s Daily Online International cooperation between Russia and China contributes to global stability and the formation of new world order, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday. “In general, Russia’s cooperation with China on foreign issues . ..is an important stabilizing factor in the current complicated international situation,” Lavrov said here in a speech at the Diplomatic Academy.

Did Israel Put Money Over Justice? – NYTimes.com They say there is evidence that the bomber who killed their son was backed by Iranian money that was laundered through China. Their feelings are running particularly high as Netanyahu prepares to address a joint session of Congress this week, where he will oppose a possible nuclear deal with Iran sought by President Obama. The family shares with the prime minister a deep distrust of Tehran, but they also feel betrayed. They are convinced that, in their son’s case, Netanyahu has placed Israel’s commercial interests with China ahead of punishing those responsible for their son’s death, in effect protecting Iran.

Congressional Research Service Report on “China’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ)” | Andrew S. Erickson Ian E. Rinehart and Bart Elias

Sri Lanka says will not allow repeat of Chinese submarine visits : Neighbours, News – India Today Asked following his two-day visit to Beijing if the new Colombo government would, as ousted President Mahinda Rajapaksa had done, allow Chinese submarines access to Sri Lankan ports, Samaraweera said, “I really don’t know under which sort of circumstances that led to some submarines.. to the port of Colombo on the very day the Japanese Prime Minister was visiting Sri Lanka. But we will ensure that such incidents, from whatever quarter, do not happen during our tenure.”

Internet privacy, funded by spooks: A brief history of the BBG | PandoDaily China will like this story  //  For the past few months I’ve been covering U.S. government funding of popular Internet privacy tools like Tor, CryptoCat and Open Whisper Systems. During my reporting, one agency in particular keeps popping up: An agency with one of those really bland names that masks its wild, bizarre history: the Broadcasting Board of Governors, or BBG. The BBG was formed in 1999 and runs on a $721 million annual budget. It reports directly to Secretary of State John Kerry and operates like a holding company for a host of Cold War-era CIA spinoffs and old school “psychological warfare” projects: Radio Free Europe, Radio Free Asia, Radio Martí, Voice of America, Radio Liberation from Bolshevism (since renamed “Radio Liberty”) and a dozen other government-funded radio stations and media outlets pumping out pro-American propaganda across the globe.

Chinese surveillance camera supplier confirms hacking loophole | South China Morning Post Hikvision, based in Hangzhou, confirmed on its microblog that some of its products were at risk of attack from abroad, backing up a statement by the Jiangsu Provincial Public Security Bureau on Friday. Listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, Hikvision is the biggest supplier of surveillance products and services on the mainland by market value.

坚定不移走中国特色国家安全道路-学习习近平主席总体国家安全观重大战略思想 -求是 2015/05 作者:孙建国 Gen. Sun Jianguo in latest Seeking Truth, sees lots of color revolution risks, among other things // 有力遏制“颜色革命”,坚决维护国家政治安全和政权安全。做好防范“颜色革命”工作,事关党的前途命运,事关国家长治久安。我们坚持中国共产党的领导,打好意识形态主动仗,坚定中国特色社会主义道路自信、理论自信、制度自信;坚持发展是硬道理的战略思想,夯实国家繁荣富强、人民幸福安康、社会和谐稳定的物质基础;坚持思想建党和制度治党,严明政治纪律和政治规矩,坚决遏制腐败现象蔓延势头。同时,严厉打击各种颠覆违法活动,粉碎敌对势力对我策动“颜色革命”图谋,全力打赢维护社会政治稳定的硬仗;对国内暴恐势力保持严打高压态势,牢牢掌握了反暴恐斗争主动权;加强互联网管理,综合治理网络生态,弘扬主旋律,传播正能量,净化了网络环境,保持了社会和谐稳定。

共建“一带一路”战略 开创我国全方位对外开放新格局_求是网 lead commentary in latest issue of Seeking Truth is on the one belt one road strategy //  习近平总书记在中央外事工作会议上的重要讲话中指出,我国已经进入了实现中华民族伟大复兴的关键阶段。中国与世界的关系在发生深刻变化。我们观察和规划改革发展,必须统筹考虑和综合运用国际国内两个市场、国际国内两种资源、国际国内两类规划。习近平总书记提出共同建设丝绸之路经济带和21世纪海上丝绸之路的倡议,即“一带一路”战略,就是顺应这一国内国际发展新趋势作出的重大决策。

Prince William arrives in China and invites President Xi for state visit – Telegraph Chinese President Xi Jinping gave a warm welcome to the Duke of Cambridge William on Monday as he began the first visit to the mainland by a member of the British royal family in almost three decades, setting aside the rancour with London over Hong Kong.

 

Hong Kong, Macao And Taiwan *

U.S. bill links Hong Kong economic privileges to autonomy | Reuters A bipartisan group of U.S. legislators reintroduced a bill on Friday aimed at putting pressure on China to ensure autonomy and human rights in Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act would update a 1992 law that has afforded Hong Kong trade and economic privileges not enjoyed by mainland China. It would require the U.S. secretary of state to certify annually that Hong Kong is sufficiently autonomous before enacting any new laws or agreements granting Hong Kong such different treatment. It would also allow the secretary to waive the certification on national security grounds.

Hong Kong Police Use Pepper Spray During Chaotic Shopping Protest-AP Hong Kong police used pepper spray Sunday to break up scuffles between protesters demonstrating against mainland Chinese shoppers and villagers from a border town. The unruly demonstration was the latest to target the influx of mainland shoppers to Hong Kong, where many blame their voracious buying habits for distorting the local economy.

Macau Fortunes Go From Bad to Worse as New Year Gamblers Vanish – Bloomberg Business Players failed to materialize during what is traditionally one of the busiest weeks of the year, prompting analysts to slash their estimates for gambling in February. Casino revenue is now projected to plunge 53.5 percent for the month, according to the median estimate from eight analysts surveyed by Bloomberg, compared with the 40 percent drop forecast before the holiday started

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Group-chatting app Blupe, an offspring of China’s Momo, launches today in the U.S. | VentureBeat | Social | by Barry Levine It’s a wholly-owned offspring of Momo, a social app used by more than 180 million Chinese to discover and chat with people nearby. Momo founding team member and now Blupe CEO/founder Sichuan Zhang has relocated to San Francisco from Beijing, assembling a team to build and launch the app.

Jackie Chan on ‘Dragon Blade,’ Patriotism – Hollywood Reporter “I have always been a patriot. Is it wrong? If people are cursed for being a patriot, please curse me,” Chan told M1905, the official web site of state broadcaster CCTV’s movie channel CCTV6. “Seven years ago, I wanted to do this film. I didn’t make the film because the government policy wants to protect the Silk Road. I am ahead of them. I hope chairman Xi (Jinping) gets to watch this film.”

I Make English-Language Propaganda for the Chinese Communist Party | VICE | United States Whenever I meet with foreign colleagues we usually share a laugh about the silliness we put in print. We reassure ourselves that it’s just muscle-building for our serious careers in “real journalism.” Sometimes we even believe it. All countries use propaganda, of course. A great deal of my time is spent wondering if the Western media is any better. Once in a while I feel a slight twinge of bad conscience, and wonder if I should feel a bit more uneasy about working in a giant authoritarian lie factory. But at least I have the consolation of knowing that the product is defective.

Public tip-offs lead China’s online crackdown – Xinhua Nearly 12,000 tip-offs received by China’s network authorities in February resulted in the blacklisting of search keywords and online accounts. More than half of the 11,796 complaints received by the China Internet Illegal Information Reporting Center involved lewd content while the rest concerned online extortion and paid post deletions, gambling and terrorism, according to a statement released on Saturday by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC).

 

Society, Art, Sports, Culture And History *

China passes reform plan to boost soccer competence – Xinhua huge political win if Xi is seen as ending China’s decades of football shame…don’t underestimate the goodwill that could come from it  //  China’s central reform group, chaired by President Xi Jinping, on Friday passed a plan to revive soccer, a sport that has been for years a source of national embarrassment. “We must develop and revitalize soccer to ensure we are a strong nation of sports,” according to a statement issued after a meeting of the central reform leading group. “It is the desperate desire of the people as well.” China must overcome its “defective system”, which has impeded the development of the game, and provide better “institutional guarantees” for its progress, the statement said.

What 270,000 Books Tell You About China’s Changing Values – WSJ A University of California at Los Angeles study assessed Chinese values by analyzing the words used in more than 270,000 Chinese-language books and found that China’s social core is undergoing a major transformation. The psychology researchers focused on word usage in books published between 1970 and 2008. Among the findings: the word “obedience” was used three times as much as the word “autonomy” in books from 1970, while the ratio flipped in 2008 books, with “autonomy” dominating. Book authors used words like “choose,” “compete,” “private,” “autonomy” and “innovation” with increasing frequency as the nearly four decades progressed. The usage reflects greater individualism and sharp rises in “urban population, household consumption and education levels,” the study says.

China removes ‘harmonious’ gay documentary from internet | Gay Star News with embed of the documentary  //  ‘This is actually a puzzle because I have some other more sensitive videos and they’re OK. Just Mama Rainbow got in trouble,’ Fan said.  ‘Mama Rainbow talks about coming out to families. Among all the LGBT issues, it’s a very harmonious topic. It’s very weird that they took this one off.’ To get to the bottom of the issue, Fan sent a letter to the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) earlier this month the document sent to 56.com. According to Chinese law, SARFT must reply within 15 working days even if the reply is to say they will not hand over the document.

 

Energy, Environment, Science And Health *

China’s Wild Giant Panda Population Grows, According To New Census The latest census by China’s State Forestry Administration shows the panda population has grown by 268 to a total of 1,864 since the last survey ending in 2003.

Double Impact: Why China Needs Coordinated Air Quality and Climate Strategies Written by Valerie Karplus, an Assistant Professor in the Global Economics and Management Group at the MIT Sloan School of Management and the Director of the MIT-Tsinghua China Energy and Climate Project, this paper examines China’s current approach to tackling air pollution and carbon mitigation nationally and argues that more incentives are needed if China hopes to meet its “peak carbon” goal by 2030.

A Global Choke Point Report: China’s Water-Energy-Food Roadmap | Wilson Center This report builds on the China Environment Forum’s (CEF) extensive research in partnership with Circle of Blue, and draws heavily on a weeklong exchange with American and Chinese water, energy, and food experts that took place in China in August 2013.

China imposes one-year ivory ban on eve of Prince William visit – Telegraph Beijing announces short ban on ivory imports ahead of Prince William’s royal visit to a Chinese elephant rehabilitation centre next week

 

EDUCATION *

Alibaba and Peking University Establish Chinese MOOC Platform – TechNode Chinese MOOCs – an online course platform for the global Chinese-speaking audience and anyone interested in Chinese language and culture – was recently jointly launched by Alibaba and Peking University, one of the foremost Chinese seats of education. On the platform there are currently more than 20 pre-recorded courses provided by Peking University. A handful of colleges in Greater China have signed up, and it is expected more universities will join the program. Like Coursera, all the courses on Chinese MOOCs are for free and certificates are offered for the completion of some courses.

Chinese students go to crazy lengths in U.S. university applications – Business Insider As the number of Chinese students in U.S. colleges outpaces that of any other country, the journey to get into an elite American university has only gotten more cutthroat and students are rising to the challenge in strange ways. Think: Scalping tickets for tests, making up exotic adventures, and getting tutored at 1:00 am.

What Is Wrong with Chinese Universities? » The LARB Blog If you ask this question of Zhang Ming, a professor at People’s University in Beijing, he will probably ask how much time you have — because he has a lot to say.

 

Agriculture And Rural Issues *

Gov’t Moves on GM Crops Spur Industry’s Cautious Optimism – Over the past two months, China has made several moves that have aroused expectations that efforts to industrialize genetically modified crops will resume. The first involved approving the importation of three varieties of GM corn and soybeans from the United States. Later, the Ministry of Agriculture renewed the expired safety certificates of the country’s own GM crops. While that’s good news for the industry, it may be too early to celebrate, says Chen Zhangliang, vice chairman of the China Association for Science and Technology.

China’s Long Food Chain Plugs In – NYTimes.com Chinese technology companies believe they can do it better. From the farm to the table, the country’s biggest players are looking to upgrade archaic systems with robust data collection, smartphone apps, online marketplaces and fancy gadgetry. The founder of the computer maker Lenovo started Joyvio, the agricultural company that tracks kiwis and other fruit from planting to delivery. The Internet giant Alibaba directly connects consumers with farmers via an online produce-delivery service.

 

Books And Literature *

True Tales of Language, Lore, and Love from Chinese Flyover Country | The Los Angeles Review of Books So why then spend three years living in Manchuria, researching and writing a book about it, as Meyer did? So long as there have been memoirs, potential memoirists have sought out difficult places in which they might learn about the people and history of the place and — ultimately — about themselves. In one sense, Meyer is no different. In Manchuria is a bet that the desolate plains of northeast China will be more interesting to him and his readers than they are to most Chinese, and even to most residents of Manchuria. // the book on Amazon 

 

JOBS AND EVENTS *

USAJOBS – Senior Research Fellow position in the Center for the Study of Chinese Military Affairs (CSCMA) within the Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS) at the National Defense University (NDU)-DC The Senior Research Fellow’s primary duties are to support the INSS and CSCMA missions and their major clients by: conducting research in support of joint education, leader development, and strategic support; publishing peer-reviewed original research articles (or their equivalent) and promoting research products through briefings, social media, opinion pieces, and other outreach activities; organizing, conducting, and/or participating in briefings, roundtables, workshops or conferences (or their equivalent) resulting in publications and event reports; producing internal products for and from educational outreach events and trips that support DoD and other national security organizations; making presentations in the senior fellow’s area of subject matter expertise to assist other NDU components; responding promptly to all administrative and management requests for support; increasing CSCMA output through collaborative relationships; and leading or participating on collaborative teams as requested.

Beijing China Financial Correspondent Job-Reuters China financial correspondent, BeijingReuters is looking for an energetic self-starter to dominate the coverage of China’s financial services industry and its rapidly-evolving regulatory environment. The successful candidate, to be based in Beijing, will be responsible for breaking news and generating insightful story ideas in a high-profile segment that is closely watched by Reuters’ biggest professional clients. Delivering exclusives in the highly-competitive M&A space at a time when Chinese companies are on a massive shopping spree will also be a key responsibility.He/She must have a proven track-record of source-building — the job will require developing a network of high-level contacts among bankers, regulators, financial professionals, lawyers and government officials in China.

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