The Sinocism China Newsletter 04.15.15

Today’s Links:

AnchorTHE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

1. Interview: Li Keqiang on China’s challenges – FT.com Is it just me or has Premier Li taken a much higher profile since the NPC meeting last month?  //  In his first interview with a western media organisation, Mr Li was relaxed, gregarious and clearly in command of his brief during an hour of questioning in the Hong Kong room of the Great Hall, a highly symbolic venue to receive a British newspaper editor. His main message to the world was China’s continued commitment to the current global financial order, particularly in the wake of Beijing’s move to set up the Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank.

2. Economists React: China’s Economic Growth Slows  – WSJ China’s economy expanded 7.0% year-over-year in the first quarter — its slowest pace in six years — raising alarm bells among some analysts who warned that Beijing might struggle to realize its full-year growth target of “about” 7%. The big problems continue to be overcapacity in heavy industry and a flagging property market. Industrial output looked particularly weak in March, rising only 5.6% year-on-year. And the one area that has been robust in recent months, retail sales, came in below expectations. Still, some economists were upbeat on the economy’s prospects for the next quarter, seeing signs that the property market might be reviving.

Related: [视频]【中国经济一季报】中国经济同比增7%平稳开局新闻频道央视网 Top story on Wednesday CCTV Evening News on Economy, Q1 GDP

Related: IMF: India to Grow Faster than China – The American Interest The IMF expects China’s slowdown to continue with growth of 6.8 per cent this year and 6.3 per cent in 2016, considerably slower than India, which is expected to expand by 7.5 per cent in both years, marking an important moment in the momentum of two of the world’s largest three economies, measured by purchasing power parity.

3. China’s economy: Coming down to earth | The Economist WHEN “60 Minutes”, an American television news programme, visited a new district in the metropolis of Zhengzhou in 2013, it made it the poster-child for China’s property bubble. “We found what they call a ghost city,” said Lesley Stahl, the host. “Uninhabited for miles, and miles, and miles, and miles.” Two years on, she would not be able to say the same. The empty streets where she stood have a steady stream of cars during the day. Workers saunter out of offices at lunch. Laundry hangs in the windows of the subdivisions…The success of Zhengzhou’s development belies some of the worst fears about China’s overinvestment. What appear to be ghost cities can, with the right catalysts and a bit of time, acquire flesh and bones. Yet it also marks a turning-point for the Chinese economy.  //  so true, the Zhengzhou new city was booming when I visited last summer, the bears overstated their case with Zhengzhou, should revisit but perhaps too inconvenient…

4. China’s high-risk plan to revive its economy | Business Spectator written by a successful hedge fund manager…I find practitioner views tend to be more useful than those of pundits/analysts, especially the ones with no real money in the game // China is following the interventionist playbook adopted by many authorities since 2009, engineering a rally to alter the economy the market should supposedly reflect. Ben Bernanke in 2010 explicitly targeted higher stock prices to induce a self-fulfilling “wealth effect” to revive a still-struggling US economy. Japan and Europe copied his QE strategy, to push down interest rates seeking to spur economic recovery. China sees the equity market as a key catalyst to bolster confidence and to bootstrap its reform and deleveraging plan…the market may itself revive animal spirits in the economy, another tool in the hands of the central authorities to shape consumer confidence. Their plan just may work.

Related: Sinocism readers had an inkling about this months ago. This is a comment from the September 12, 2014 newsletter: China stocks rise to 18-month high on stimulus outlook |  a new bull market politically and financially very useful…very hard to make money in China over the last couple of years, if people start seeing real gains in the market then support for Xi will strengthen even more…and of course a rising market may make it easier for struggling firms to raise capital, and may encourage people to see reform momentum…so there are lots of reasons there is so much ongoing talk in the media about the dawn of a new bull market…there are also lots of reasons to be skeptical, but remember that China’s stock markets have never really been markets that reflect economic or corporate fundamentals

Related: As Chinese Stocks Surge, Here’s How to Ride Rally – Barron’s In early January, we predicted 2015 would be the year of the Chinese market. The pronouncement was controversial. China’s markets were then caught in a maelstrom many predicted would lead to a harsh end to nation’s increasingly delicate economic and financial conditions. We thought the Chinese government would use all of its power to engineer a solution. A key plank in our bullish thesis was a conversation from several years ago with a key Asian market leader who said western investors do not understand how China’s markets work. He said a government official in Beijing could pick up an office phone that would ring on the desks of executives all over the country who were ready to do whatever was directed.  //  don’t fight the Fed, don’t buck Beijing…10,000 on the Shanghai Composite in 2017 would not surprise me

Related: A Chinese Paradox: Slow Growth Is Good, Stock Bubbles Welcome – Bloomberg Business Right now, Chinese stocks are a big momentum trade, fueled by excess liquidity and bets that authorities will do more to stoke growth, said Wang Tao, chief China economist at UBS Group AG in Hong Kong. In China, “the stock market never correlates with the economy,” she says. Whether Chinese stocks are overvalued may be a secondary concern for policy makers who view promotion of the stock markets as a key way to diversify credit allocation away from banks. “Most enterprises raising capital through the stock market are real-economy enterprises, and this helps the real economy to develop,” said People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan at a press conference on March 12.

5. Full Text: Tibet’s Path of Development Is Driven by an Irresistible Historical Tide – Xinhua The State Council Information Office, China’s cabinet, on Wednesday published a white paper on the development path of Tibet. Following is the full text:

Related: Xinhua Insight: China issues white paper on Tibet, denouncing Dalai Lama’s “middle way” – Xinhua Tibet’s progress on its present path of development is an objective requirement of modern civilization. It accords with the progressive trend of society, the prevailing conditions and current reality in China, and the fundamental interests of all ethnic groups in Tibet, says the white paper, which was released by the Information Office of the State Council. However, the paper points out that a group remains clustering around the 14th Dalai Lama, who are remnants of the feudal serf owners having long lived in exile. This group is driven by the political goal of achieving Tibetan independence and a sentimental attachment to the old theocratic society. Having failed to instigate violence in support of their cause, they turned to the “middle way”, which negates Tibet’s sound development path and attempts to create a “state within a state” on Chinese territory as an interim step toward the ultimate goal of full independence.

6. Henry Paulson: Dealing with China (Complete Video) | Asia Society NEW YORK, April 13, 2015 — New Yorker reporter Evan Osnos speaks with former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson about the latter’s new book Dealing with China: An Insider Unmasks the New Economic Superpower. (1 hr., 22 min.)

7. The Future of U.S.-China Relations Under Xi Jinping: Toward a New Framework of Constructive Realism for a Common Purpose-Kevin Rudd The future relationship between China and the United States is one of the mega-changes and mega-challenges of our age. China’s rise is the geopolitical equivalent of the melting polar ice caps – gradual change on a massive scale that can suddenly lead to dramatic turns of events. In this Summary Report of a longer forthcoming work, former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, a senior fellow at the Belfer Center, asks if this defining trend of the 21st century can be managed peacefully. He argues that it can – if Washington and Beijing commit to placing their relationship on a stable, long-term footing.
Rudd’s findings emerge from a major study he led at the Belfer Center on the possibilities and impacts of a new strategic relationship between China and the United States.

8. Cancer surge in China prompts rise of special patient hotels-AP Li Xiaohe has set herself up for the long haul in a cramped but sunny room in western Beijing, about a block from China’s most renowned cancer hospital. Her laundry dries on hangers and her husband cooks in a communal kitchen as she embarks on an 84-day program of chemotherapy, following the removal of part of her right breast. The youthful, soft-spoken 43-year-old, who works as a neighborhood watch leader back home in Henan province, is living in one of the many so-called cancer hotels that dot the neighborhood around the hospital

 

AnchorBUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

Red Pulse | SSE Will Encourage Red-chips and VIEs to List An SSE representative stated on April 15 that it is crafting policies to facilitate domestic listing for red-chip enterprises and VIEs, with a possibility of internet companies being specifically targeted. In addition, SSE will likely utilize the FTZ to draw red-chip enterprises into listing on the Mainland.

China’s Biggest Chip Maker’s Possible Tie-Up With H-P Values Unit at Up to $5 Billion – WSJ Tsinghua Unigroup Ltd. is in talks to buy a controlling stake in Hewlett-Packard Co.’s China data-networking operations, Mr. Zhao, its chairman, said in an interview earlier this week. Discussions are still taking place over the 51% stake in H-P subsidiary, H3C Technologies Co., he said, in a deal that people familiar with the talks say could value H3C at as much as $5 billion. Mr. Zhao, who says he herded goats as a child and later amassed a fortune in coal, gas and real estate in the northwestern desert region of Xinjiang, said his company isn’t an arm of Beijing despite its high-level political connections. Instead, he said, he offers foreign companies a connection to the vast China market.

Rick Perry’s ties to Texas’ Chinese Methanol Plant | Al Jazeera America The administration of former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, a likely 2016 GOP presidential contender, appears to have had a hand in helping two Chinese politician-entrepreneurs — who in recent years have come under public scrutiny on allegations of environmental abuses and corruption — park assets in a proposed methanol plant beside an underserved, predominantly black community in southern Texas. What would be one of the largest methanol plants in the world, valued at $4.5 billion and receiving hefty tax incentives from Texas City and the state, would send its product to China, according to promotional materials. But China has in recent years struggled to find a use for all its methanol, which is used in producing biodiesel and as a solvent.

China’s Liquor Giant Reveals Record Deliveries Without Cash – Bloomberg Business Kweichow Moutai Co., the $37.9 billion maker of a fiery liquor long used at political celebrations, has seen a spike in unpaid bills as distributors delay paying bills. Prices for Moutai have tumbled, cutting distributor profits and forcing them to buy on credit. Payments due to the company, what accountants call receivables, almost quadrupled at the end of September, the most recent quarter available. As Kweichow Moutai prepares to report earnings next week, the results will illustrate the corporate fallout of Xi’s crackdown.

 

AnchorPOLITICS AND LAW *

Survey Offers Rare Window Into Chinese Political Culture – NYTimes.com A Chinese conservative supports the teachings of the philosopher Confucius, backs a strong state and wants the government to have a strong role in running the economy. Chinese liberals yearn for more civil liberties, believe in free-market capitalism and want more sexual freedom. That’s the key finding of a new paper by two graduate students at Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that draws on an online 50-question survey of more than 171,000 people

China’s Ideological Spectrum by Jennifer Pan, Yiqing Xu :: SSRN MIT Political Science Department Research Paper No. 2015-6 Abstract: We offer the first large scale empirical analysis of ideology in contemporary China to determine whether individuals fall along a discernible and coherent ideological spectrum, and whether there are regional and inter-group variations in ideological orientation. Using principal component analysis (PCA) on a survey of 171,830 individuals, we identify one dominant ideological dimension in China. Individuals who are politically conservative, who emphasize the supremacy of the state and nationalism, are also likely to be economically conservative, supporting a return to socialism and state-control of the economy, and culturally conservative, supporting traditional, Confucian values. In contrast, political liberals, supportive of constitutional democracy and individual liberty, are also likely to be economic liberals who support market-oriented reform and social liberals who support modern science and values such as sexual freedom. This uni-dimensionality of ideology is robust to a wide variety of diagnostics and checks. Using post-stratification based on census data, we find a strong relationship between liberal orientation and modernization—provinces with higher levels of economic development, trade openness, urbanization are more liberal than their poor, rural counterparts, and individuals with higher levels of education and income and more liberal than their less educated and lower-income peers.

‘Ideological spectrum’ misreads local reality – Global Times Foreign fallacies have constantly penetrated Chinese public opinion. These fallacies, which were disseminated under the cover of prestigious Western academic institutions or media, have proved deceptive. Domestic Chinese scholars as well as the media should spare no effort to expose them so as to the set the record straight.

一本谈共产党的书,上市一周在三大网店全部售空 sounds like an interesting book, have ordered it  //  小编按:由京沪五位青年学者撰写的《大道之行:中国共产党与中国社会主义》上市一周,即在三大网店销售断货。北京大学国际关系学院教授、中国与世界研究中心主任潘维读后毫不吝惜赞美之词,他为本书撰写的序言也以《潘维:要警惕共产党的国民党化》在朋友圈引发热议。到底这是一本什么样的书?让我们听听潘维教授怎么说。

Caixin Media Takes Legal Action against Libels by Guo Wengui – Caixin In light of the fact that these actions took place on the mainland, in Hong Kong and in the United States, which fall in different legal jurisdictions, Caixin has hired lawyers in Beijing, Hong Kong and the United States to take legal action against Guo and his companies. Caixin Media reported the attacks to the police in Beijing immediately after they were discovered. It and Mrs. Hu then filed a lawsuit in a court in Beijing against Guo and the two companies in the hopes of bringing them to justice under civil and criminal laws.

Son of late Communist Party chief warns China against slipping back to Mao era ideology | South China Morning Post Twenty-six years after the death of liberal Communist Party chief Hu Yaobang, his son says he should be remembered for having tried to bring China onto the path of democracy and rule of law – and warns against slipping back to Mao-era ideology. Speaking to the South China Morning Post ahead of today’s anniversary of the former leader’s death, Hu Dehua said his father’s legacies included freeing people from the torment of the Cultural Revolution and steering China into an era of reform.

China to Fight Terror With Increased Surveillance – China Digital Times (CDT) In a report for Washington-based security think tank Project 2049, Julia Famularo summarizes recent policy developments—including security measures, increased censorship, and religious regulation—in Xinjiang to conclude that Beijing’s strategy of targeting religious practice is not the right approach to addressing a genuine security concern:

China Law Translate | Blog Post on new Public Security Document by CCCPC and State Council interesting chart

A Reduced Sentence Shines Light on China’s Little-Known Opposition Parties – China Real Time Report – WSJ The story of Mr. Dong, a resident of eastern China’s Shandong province who allegedly set up his own political party with the intention of overthrowing the Communist Party, was recently uncovered by the San Francisco-based human rights organization Dui Hua. The organization said on Tuesday that the 59-year-old had his 2011 sentence reduced in February so that he will serve only 19 and a half more years, meaning he will be released in August 2034. Court records confirm that the Inner Mongolia High People’s Court approved his sentence reduction on account of good behavior and demonstration of regret.

贪官任润厚死后被开除党籍在警告谁?中纪委发话了 CCDI on the example set by the posthumous expulsion of Run Houze from the Party, and why it is likely to happen again  //  4月13日,中纪委宣布了对原山西省副省长任润厚的审查报告,将其开除党籍。而此时,任润厚已死亡半年有余。任润厚此番还创造了一项历史新纪录:他成为中共党史上第一位因腐败在死去之后而被开除党籍的高级干部。 4月15日,中纪委机关报《中国纪检监察报》刊文指出,任润厚死后仍被开除党籍“有章可循”。 任润厚之死很容易让人想到另一“厚”,2015年3月15日因膀胱癌死亡的原中央军委副主席徐才厚。任润厚、徐才厚,“出事未结身先死”有何不同?

China Focus: China makes filing lawsuits easier – Xinhua The Supreme People’s Court (SPC) on Wednesday streamlined procedure on accepting and hearing cases, another step toward an authoritative judicial system in China. The rules, to take effect on May 1, state that any interference in court procedure will be severely punished. To address difficulties for the public in filing cases, current accreditation by courts will be replaced by a case registration system. Authorities are determined to put an end to obstructive behavior by courts and officials meddling in cases.

Global sales of “Xi Jinping: The Governance of China” set new record – Xinhua 4 million actually pretty weak if this is part of the “Cult of Xi” building  //  Sales of the book “Xi Jinping: The Governance of China” have set a new record for overseas sales of books written by Chinese leaders since the country’s reform and opening up. The figure is now over 4 million worldwide, with overseas sales accounting for one tenth, Lu Cairong, vice president of the China International Publishing Group, said Tuesday at the London Book Fair.

Corrupt Shandong police chief jailed for accepting 2.7 million RMB in bribes and abetting convicted mobster: Shanghaiist A senior police officer has been slapped with a 20-year jail sentence and 500,000 RMB fine after a Shandong court found he was guilty of taking 2.7 million RMB (440,000 USD) in bribes and protecting a notorious gangster, reports China Daily. Shan Guowei, who was the former police chief of Shinan district in Qingdao, is the latest public servant to be taken down in Xi Jinping’s ongoing crackdown on corruption.

Why a village land protest spells trouble for China’s government | Business Spectator Some commentators, for instance the prominent American scholar David Shambaugh, see Xi’s various clampdowns as a sure sign of weakness. A confident government, the argument goes, would not be bothered with cracking down on academic institutions, putting the screws on the already heavily controlled internet, or targeting activists, including those working in previously “safe” areas such as women’s rights. But anxiety and insecurity at the top are nothing new. Worries about real and perceived threats have been a constant feature of the party throughout its existence. The entire political system is based on the party maintaining ultimate authority and, as such, it is constantly looking for challenges and jealously defending its power.

 

AnchorFOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

Major general from Beijing Military District under arrest | Business Spectator The former head of the logistics department in the Beijing Military Region, one of seven major military regions in the country, is reportedly under arrest for corruption. Major General Dong Minxiang, was responsible for military related housing and construction projects. Since the start of the party’s anti-corruption campaign, over 30 senior officers have been arrested including a deputy head of the Chinese military.

China Expands Islands in Disputed Waters, Photos Show – WSJ China is expanding two islands it controls in the disputed Paracel Islands, east of Vietnam, satellite imagery shows, even as Beijing builds seven new islets in the South China Sea. Woody Island and Duncan Island have both expanded significantly as a result of recent land-reclamation work undertaken by China, according to images taken a month ago by satellite-imaging company DigitalGlobe

PLA top brass to be polished better under new rules|WantChinaTimes The PLA general political department earlier this week published new rules on recruiting Communist Party of China members, giving political standards top priority. The number of CPC members in the military will be kept under strict control and their personal qualities carefully scrutinized.

China lurks as US ties with Thailand splinter, military experts say – News – Stripes America’s alliance with Thailand — its oldest treaty partner in Asia — is splintering as a result of blinkered diplomacy over the year-old military coup there, say two former U.S. military officers with long experience working in that country. And they warn that China is quickly filling the void.

Commentary: Another case of U.S. habitual slander against China on cyber security – Xinhua A recent report by a U.S. company alleging that China is behind a decade-long hacking program targeting Southeast Asian nations is the latest example of the United States’ habitual defamation when it comes to cyber security. The report, issued by publicly-listed firm FireEye, claimed that an advanced hacking group, referred to as APT30, has infiltrated the computer systems of government bodies, militaries and economic entities mainly in Southeast Asia for espionage purposes since 2004.

Phoenix rising: China’s hard road to soft power | Business Spectator China Spectator has been granted a rare opportunity to speak to one of the country’s most powerful media executives, Chen Haiyan, the chairman of Phoenix Publishing and Media Company, one of the country’s largest publishing houses and media companies. In a wide-ranging interview, Chen explained the motivation behind his company’s venture abroad including to Australia, the expansion of Confucius Institutes, the challenges facing the publishing industry and the implications of the rise of China. He is not only a veteran publisher, he also served on the central committee of the Chinese Communist Youth League, the power base of former President Hu Jintao and current premier Li Keqiang.

 

AnchorHONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

Closer Look: HK Risks Alienating Mainlanders with Cuts to Shenzhen Visit Program – Caixin In April 2009, residents of Shenzhen were allowed to apply for multiple-entry permits that allowed them to visit neighboring Hong Kong an unlimited number of times. Some 2.68 million people qualified for the scheme, official data show. Some took advantage of the permits to visit Hong Kong frequently to buy cheaper groceries and other items that were sold on the mainland. The traders, known as parallel traders, could earn as much as HK$ 600 a day. But Hongkongers started complaining that the increasing number of visitors from the mainland led to soaring property and retail prices in 2012.

 

AnchorTECH AND MEDIA *

Spiking the Great Cannon? – Skating on Stilts Dmitri and I also unpack the Great Cannon – China’s answer to 4Chan’s Low-Orbit Ion Cannon.  Citizen Lab’s report strongly suggests that the Chinese government used its censorship system to deliberately infect about 2% of the Baidu queries coming from outside China.  The government injected a script into the outsiders’ machines.  The script then DDOSed Github, a US entity that had been making the New York Times available to Chinese readers along with numerous open source projects.  The attack is novel, showing a creative and dangerous use of China’s Great Firewall, and it provoked not the slightest response from the US government.  I ask why any company in the US that uses the Baidu search engine or serves China-based ads should not be required to notify users that their machines may be infected with hostile code before allowing them to receive ads or conduct searches.

Chinese drone maker seeks funding at US$10 bln valuation Chinese consumer drone maker SZ DJI Technology Co. is in talks to raise funding at a valuation of US$10 billion. Several venture-capital firms including Accel Partners and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers have offered to invest

Beijing-based Ninebot Acquires Segway, Raises $80M From Xiaomi And Sequoia | TechCrunch Intriguing news from the personal transportation mobility device sector: Beijing-based company Ninebot has announced that not only will it acquire rival Segway, but it has also scored $80 million in funding from investors including Xiaomi, Sequoia Capital, and Shunwei Foundation.

Alibaba, Tencent Alumni Fuel China’s Startup Success – WSJ Taking advantage of the extensive alumni network to recruit talent and raise capital, the movement is reminiscent of the wave of Silicon Valley startups that were created by veterans of U.S. tech giants such as PayPal Inc. and Google Inc. in the past decade. The upshot is a vibrant tech scene in China, with billion-dollar startup valuations previously seen only in the U.S.

China directors name ‘Black Coal’ top film; rules to be altered next year – LA Times 白日焰火,my favorite Chinese movie in years  // The crime drama “Black Coal, Thin Ice” bagged three awards at the China Film Directors Guild Awards, including film of the year, at a ceremony held over the weekend. Director-writer Diao Yinan won screenwriter of the year while the actor of the year award went to Liao Fan. Liao won the Silver Bear for actor at last year’s Berlin International Film Festival, where “Black Coal” also took home top kudos.

 

AnchorSOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

Online Support–and Mockery–Await Chinese Feminists After Release | Foreign Policy The outpouring of derisive comments pretty much proves the activists’ point — China’s got a misogyny problem, and the government isn’t helping.

China’s ‘evil’ church demolition campaign continues, say activists – Telegraph Authorities continue to strip crosses from churches in east China despite claims Beijing had ordered an end to “anti-Christian” campaign

 

AnchorENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

Latest Blast at PX Plant in Fujian Rekindles Public’s Worries – Caixin A large explosion and fire at a chemical plant in Zhangzhou, in the eastern province of Fujian, has rekindled the public’s concern about the security of petroleum projects and the adequacy of government oversight, and experts say the incident may further exacerbate this distrust. The explosion at the Dragon Aromatics Plant at 6:56 p.m. on April 6 involved a paraxylene, or PX, facility on the Gulei Peninsula. Government investigators said the blast was caused by a chemical leak and that four oil tanks were involved. The plant is controlled by the Taiwanese petrochemical producer Xianglu Group.

China takes strides in aim to lead world in nuclear power | beyondbrics China is beginning to wrest the nuclear export industry away from dominant Western suppliers. Having used the lure of its domestic market to good effect, it has won technology transfers from leading European and American corporatesand recycled this expertise. It has started selling technology to a group of largely Western-sceptic states and emerging market economies but an important obstacle remains before China can achieve global dominanc

环保部出重拳:公众有望参与重大污染事件调查 记者14日从环保部获悉,作为新环保法的配套规定,环保部拟定了《环境保护公众参与办法(试行)》公开征求社会公众意见。征求意见稿提出,公众可参与重大环境污染和生态破坏事件的调查处理。 征求意见稿同时规定,环保社会组织和环保志愿者代表可以担任环境特约监察员或监督员,对环保主管部门或企事业单位进行监督;环保主管部门要为环保社会组织环境公益诉讼提供协助。

 

AnchorAGRICULTURE AND RURAL ISSUES *

Firm Named for Top Rice Scientist Pulls Variety of Seeds after Crop Failure – Caixin Shenzhen-listed Yuan Longping High-tech Agriculture Co. announced the decision regarding its Liangyou 0293 variety of seeds on April 13. It said cold weather was responsible for lower rice yields in the Anhui city of Bengbu in 2014. The company also said it is talking to rice growers, seed wholesalers and local agricultural regulators to work out plans to help farmers control their losses, but did not elaborate on what that aid would entail. The Southern Weekend newspaper said on April 9 that rice growers in Bengbu planted a total of 667 hectares of Liangyou 0293 in 2014, but suffered heavy losses due to an infection of a fungal disease called rice blast. Farmers said the problem was so serious that some had no yields.

农业部:对农业面源污染尚不够清楚政经频道财新网 张桃林介绍,总的来看,中国农业面源污染量大面广、复杂多样,污染防治工作起步也比较晚,综合防治工作还面临许多困难和问题,形势不容乐观。局部地区污染还在加剧

 

AnchorFOOD AND TRAVEL *

Wine Word: Helan Qing Xue winemaker Zhang Jing on Ningxia’s scene | Grape Wall of China Two years ago, I interviewed Zhang Jing, winemaker at Helan Qing Xue in Ningxia, just after she returned home from a three-month working holiday in Australia. She talked about lessons learned Down Under, the move toward fruitier wine in Ningxia, and more. See the interview here. I met Zhang again last week and we talked about another recent trip–this time she went to New Zealand–as well as the Ningxia wine scene. Some comments…

 

AnchorBEIJING *

Canadian Woman in Great Wall Death Could Owe Hundreds of Thousands in Civil Lawsuit | the Beijinger A Canadian woman who accidentally knocked over and killed an elderly Chinese woman on the Great Wall won’t face criminal charges, but the deceased woman’s family has filed a civil lawsuit against her…Currently the biggest question is the case is whether Fortin is still in China. The Daily Mail reported that she has already returned to Canada, although Chinese news reports have not confirmed this. “The Canadian Embassy in Beijing is providing consular services to a Canadian citizen in China,” CBC News reported Friday, quoting Canada’s Department of Foreign Affairs. Fortin can be legally prevented from departing China due to her involvement in the case.

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