The Sinocism China Newsletter 05.23.16

AnchorTHE ESSENTIAL EIGHT

1. A Rare Look Inside China’s Central Bank Shows Slackening Resolve to Revamp Yuan – WSJ The People’s Daily, the Communist Party’s mouthpiece newspaper, published May 9 a lengthy article that cautioned against going back to old ways to stimulate growth. People familiar with the matter said top economic advisers to Mr. Xi ordered up the article, which also stressed the need to keep the yuan “basically stable.” The information office of China’s State Council didn’t respond to requests for comment…At the party’s year-end economic conference in December, Mr. Xi indicated that the turmoil in China’s financial markets had made him think twice about hurrying in reforms, according to the officials with knowledge of the meeting. Mr. Xi talked about the need to guard against risks and said China’s international standing depended on “whether we can mind our own business well.” About two weeks later, the PBOC abandoned the market-based mechanism.  // Nice scoop by the WSJ (the leakers officials unhappy with the policy shift?) Beijing can not be happy that insiders are running their mouths to WSJ reporters and showing them confidential minutes of meetings, wonder if there will be an investigation…This puts the IMF in a bit of a bind. The decision to include the RMB in the SDR basket now looks premature, but politically I can’t imagine the IMF would dare to rescind it.

2. Vietnam Arms Embargo to Be Fully Lifted, Obama Says in Hanoi – The New York Times Mr. Obama portrayed the decision as part of the long process of normalizing relations between the two countries after the Vietnam War. “The decision to lift the ban was not based on China or any other considerations,” he said, with the Vietnamese president, Tran Dai Quang, standing stiffly by his side. “It was based on our desire to complete what has been a lengthy process of moving toward normalization with Vietnam.”  //  and the US wonders why China does not believe what the US says about its intentions in the region…of course this move is about China

Related: 侠客岛:美解除对越武器禁运不针对中国?明显是此地无银舆论场澎湃新闻-The Paper People’s Daily Overseas Edition Wechat account “Xiake Dao” criticizes Obama’s claim that lifting arms embargo with Vietnam not about China… //  文章称,对于越南来说,如何巩固早已到手的大量岛礁显然是第一要务。对于美国来说,不管派出多少舰机来南海“宣示航行自由”,如果在南海附近没有足够多的立足点,最终还是难以对局势产生决定性影响。此时此地解除对越南的武器禁运,就好像打开了一扇大门,双方日后进行军事合作不光可以遏制中国,还顺带堵截了俄罗斯再次“南下”的战略企图。

Related: 社评:奥巴马离任前没忘给中国“织网”评论环球网 越南在全球产业链的扩张从两个方面对中国带来挑战。一是产业链的重组将会促使相关中国企业外移,可能由此造成失业增加和产业空心化。二是TPP新贸易标准的实施将制约未来中国参与全球贸易规则谈判,加大中国与其他国家自由贸易谈判的难度。   因此,我们在高度重视美国军事介入南海的同时,需要将目光更多投向对周边经贸圈的设计与引导,如何通过构建一带一路而巩固中国在现有全球产业链中的地位,为中国的转型提供更多动力,这关系到中国未来在亚洲的地位,也是我们在这一地区与美国进行战略博弈的基础。

Related: Joint Statement: Between the United States of America and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam | whitehouse.gov both countries expressed serious concerns over recent developments in the South China Sea that have caused tensions, eroded trust and threatened peace, security, and stability. Both countries recognized the imperative of upholding the freedom of navigation and overflight and unimpeded lawful commerce in the South China Sea, called for non-militarization and self-restraint in addressing disputes, reaffirmed shared commitments under the Sunnylands Declaration, and committed to working closely with other ASEAN partners in implementing that Declaration.

3. Tsai’s inauguration in Taiwan: It could have been worse | Brookings Institution-Richard Bush The inauguration ceremony marked the transition of power from the administration of now-former President Ma Ying-jeou and his Kuomintang (KMT) to Tsai and her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). But it also had the potential to be a turning point in Taiwan’s relations with China. Would President Tsai reassure Beijing as it had demanded for months, and so preserve relations between the two sides of the Strait? Or would she fail to sufficiently accommodate China’s wishes and trigger a deterioration in relations? Beijing’s rather quick response to Tsai’s inaugural address suggests that a crisis was avoided, at least temporarily.

4. Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe under federal investigation for campaign contributions – CNN Among the McAuliffe donations that drew the interest of the investigators was $120,000 from a Chinese businessman, Wang Wenliang, through his U.S. businesses. Wang was previously delegate to China’s National People’s Congress, the country’s ceremonial legislature. “Neither the Governor nor his former campaign has knowledge of this matter, but as reported, contributions to the campaign from Mr. Wang were completely lawful,” said Elias. Wang also has been a donor to the Clinton foundation, pledging $2 million. He also has been a prolific donor to other causes, including to New York University, Harvard and environmental issues in Florida. U.S. election law prohibits foreign nationals from donating to federal, state or local elections. Penalties for violations include fines and/or imprisonment. But Wang holds U.S. permanent resident status, according to a spokeswoman, which would make him a U.S. person under election law and eligible to donate to McAuliffe’s campaign.

5. BBC News – China’s Science Revolution China is super-sizing science. From building the biggest experiments the world has ever seen to rolling out the latest medical advances on a massive scale and pushing the boundaries of exploration from the deepest ocean to outer space – China’s scientific ambitions are immense.

6. Girls: Luo Yang’s insightful portraits reveal a new generation of Chinese women | Creative Boom In her series Girls, Beijing-based photographer Luo Yang reveals a side to contemporary China that is rarely seen in the West. Her portraits depict an emerging generation of women who defy traditional stereotypes. Instead of being simply shy and reserved as one might expect, these Chinese women are also bold, self-aware and painfully cool.

7. China school milk: Social media users up in arms over ‘hush-up’ – BBC News Independent magazine Caijing and the state-owned Global Times say an unlicensed “dairy” supplied the milk substitute to 29 nurseries, and that more than 10,000 individual containers were seized. “Such a bad thing; how is this not trending?” social media user La Wule asked. “If the government does not handle this correctly… this tragedy will continue to repeat itself,” said Chouqin123, adding that such scandals had long been a problem in China. In 2008, hundreds of thousands of children suffered kidney damage because of traces of melamine in infant formula. Four years earlier, fake formula resulted in the deaths of 12 infants.

8. China university rule change sparks protests in 4 provinces – FT.com Protests against changes to China’s university admission system spread to a fourth province on Monday as authorities scrambled to contain growing anger over one of the most important issues for parents in the country’s emerging middle class — their children’s access to higher education. According to a post on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, parents gathered in Baoding, Hebei province, to demand that the education ministry scrap plans to reduce the number of places reserved for local applicants. The post showed pictures of parents outside the local government’s education bureau demanding “fairness”.

AnchorBUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE

Hedge-Fund Star Kyle Bass Slips on Oil – WSJ Mr. Bass’s firm now manages about $770 million, according to people close to the matter, down from $2.3 billion at the end of 2014. Mr. Bass moved to return more than $1 billion to investors last year after scoring profits on a bet against Japan, but he has also had some investor withdrawals, according to people close to the matter.

Hedge-Fund Manager Kyle Bass to Raise Fees If China Bet Hits Big – MoneyBeat – WSJ In his new Hayman China Opportunities fund, slated to launch this summer, Mr. Bass will keep an increasing proportion of client profits if the wager is a windfall, according to marketing materials reviewed by MoneyBeat and investors. // Bass seems to be marketing this fund very hard, a sign of difficulties in getting investors?

China Delivery Firm S.F. Express Plans Backdoor Listing – Bloomberg Shareholders of its parent S.F. Holding Group Co. plan to buy Maanshan Dingtai Rare Earth & New Material Co. through a share swap and use it as a shell company to list the company. The deal would value S.F. Holding at an estimated 43.3 billion yuan ($6.6 billion), according to a statement on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange.

Less Bang for the RMB: China’s Capital Inefficiency – China Real Time Report – WSJ Research by Nomura, however, shows that China’s liquidity efficiency–a measure of how much economic output is produced for each additional dollar, or in this case yuan, in investment–dropped sharply. The ratio, by Nomura’s estimate, fell to its lowest point on record during the first quarter and had not dropped so precipitously since early 2009 when Beijing launched a massive stimulus package to resuscitate the economy.

Chinese Consortium in Malaysia to Lobby for Multi-Billion Dollar Rail Project-Caixin The team led by Sheng Guangzu, general manager of the CRC, includes representatives from state-owned infrastructure developer China Railway Construction Corp. Ltd. (CRCC), China Railway Signal & Communication Corp and several banks, an employee of the CRC said. They left for Kuala Lumpur on May 23 to meet with Malaysian government officials to lobby for the project that involves constructing a 350-kilometer track, he said. A Japanese consortium led by the East Japan Railway Company, known as JR East, are also bidding for the project. European companies including Germany’s Siemens and Spain’s Talgo have signaled their interest in joining the race, but sources from the Chinese side said Japan was their main rival.

Land Sales Scrapped in China’s Suzhou as Bids Exceed Ceilings – Bloomberg Offers on Monday for two plots of land in the manufacturing city, which is 30 minutes by train from Shanghai, exceeded ceilings established in rules released last week by authorities, which triggered the automatic cancellation of the online auction, according to a webpage compiled by Suzhou’s land resources bureau.

Jim Chanos China Hard Pass – Business Insider “One other problem people aren’t paying enough attention to — and that is the asset-liability mismatch,” he said. “And if we learned anything … during our crisis, it was you shouldn’t finance hard-to-value long-term esoteric real-estate-related derivatives or securities with overnight money, which is what a lot of the investment banks ended up doing by ’07/’08. They couldn’t move a bunch of the gunk on their balance sheet and increasingly they were financing themselves in the repo market.” That is now happening in China, Chanos said

Goldman Sachs Likes High-Quality China Debt Amid Outflow Concern – Bloomberg Chinese data suggest capital outflow eased to $15 billion in April, an “encouraging” slowdown, analysts Kenneth Ho, Yang Yang and Charles Himmelberg at the bank wrote in a May 20 report. Still, the leakage could pick up again if the recent strength in the U.S. currency persists, they said. “Our biggest concern is a weaker renminbi leading to rising China capital outflows, and a more hawkish Fed could see such risk resurface,” the analysts said. Goldman Sachs forecasts the yuan to weaken to 6.60 by year end, the report shows. The currency traded at 6.5475 per dollar in Shanghai on Monday.

‘Massive Bailout’ Needed in Debt-Saddled China, Analyst Chu Says – Bloomberg Interviewed in Hong Kong last week, she estimated as much as 22 percent of all China’s outstanding credit may be nonperforming by the end of this year, compared with an official bad-loan number for banks in March of 1.75 percent.

In China, Old-School Stocks Are Back in Style – WSJ While the CSI 300, a benchmark of leading Chinese shares, was up 4.2% since Feb. 5 as of Asian trading hours Monday, shares of basic-materials companies were up 6.9% and energy companies were up 4.7%. Financial stocks, dominated by state-owned banks, were up 5.9%. Meanwhile, previously trendy sectors like retail and technology have done less well. Shares in consumer-focused companies that sell products from household appliances to automobiles were up 3%, while the ChiNext Price Index, a gauge of Chinese startup firms that operate in areas like tech and media, had edged up only 0.2%.

Premier urges less red tape, improved regulation, better services – Xinhua Li made the remarks in a national teleconference on May 9. Although China has made progress in streamlining administration, overhauling market regulation and optimizing government services, there is still much work to be done, said the premier in a speech released on Sunday. According to him, some power delegation measures were not fully implemented. Unfair law enforcement, arbitrary inspections and inadequate supervision revealed loopholes in market regulation. “Although the economy operated steadily in the first quarter, with improvements in structure and quality and better-than-expected indicators, downward pressure remains considerable and the foundation for economic stabilization and improvements has yet to be consolidated,” said Li.

Shanda Group Accumulates 11.7% Stake in LendingClub – WSJ Shanda began as an Internet games pioneer in China in 1999. The investment group was co-founded by Tianqiao Chen, described as China’s second-wealthiest investor and a multibillionaire by research firm Hurun Report Inc., and his wife, Chrissy Luo, according to Shanda’s website. Its public portfolio is overseen by Cathy Ge, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. banker and University of Chicago business-school graduate, according to the site. Shanda said last year it had $8 billion in assets under management.

AnchorPOLITICS AND LAW

习近平考察黑龙江伊春:守着绿水青山一定能收获金山银山中南海澎湃新闻-The Paper Xi on an inspection tour in Heilongjiang, starts in Yichun, looks like there will be lots of focus on the environment, full propaganda rollout not yet started

战略布局指引治国理政新实践(治国理政新思想新实践·深入学习贯彻习近平同志系列重要讲话精神)–时政–人民网 主持人: 本报理论部高级编辑 彭国华 嘉 宾: 清华大学马克思主义学院副院长、教授 肖贵清; 山东社会科学院党委书记 唐洲雁 ; 中国社会科学院中国特色社会主义理论体系研究中心研究员 冯颜利 ; 中共北京市海淀区委常委、宣传部部长 陈名杰

全国多地展开抄党章活动 场面热烈新闻腾讯网 自中共中央办公厅印发《关于在全体党员中开展“学党章党规、学系列讲话,做合格党员”学习教育方案》以来,全国多地展开员党员手抄党章活动,气氛热烈。图为5月21日,黑龙江黑河,黑龙江省军区某边防巡逻艇大队一中队百名余名党员正在船艇的甲板上抄党章读党章,教育、引导部队全体党员进一步坚定理想信念,牢固树立尊崇党章、遵守党章、维护党章的意识  //now there are contests across the country to see who can copy the Party Constitution the fastest…slideshow

上海市委在党章诞生地举行常委学习会,重温党的奋斗历程浦江头条澎湃新闻-The Paper 上海市静安区老成都北路7弄30号,曾经的南成都路辅德里625号,是一排有着百年历史的石库门建筑,这里是中国共产党第二次全国代表大会召开之地,中国共产党第一部党章就诞生于此。在全市深入开展“两学一做”学习教育的进程中,今天下午(5月23日),上海市委书记韩正,市委副书记、市长杨雄等市领导,怀着十分崇敬的心情来到这里,集体瞻仰党的二大会址,在党章的诞生地召开常委学习会,重温党章诞生、发展、完善的历史,重温党的奋斗历程,集体交流学习体会。

军报:防止抄写党章沦为”精致的形式主义”_网易新闻 在“两学一做”学习教育中,部分基层党组织在网上发起了手抄党章接力活动。平日里敲惯键盘、疏于动笔的党员纷纷拿起笔,工工整整地抄写党章,并在“朋友圈”中展示成果。 抄写党章的形式有助于重温党章,加深对党章的理解,促进党员加强党性修养,值得鼓励。然而如果抄写只动笔而不“走心”,“朋友圈”里只为了“晒字”而不见行动的“真章”,不触及思想和灵魂,就会把这一初衷很好的活动搞变味,沦为“精致的形式主义”,这是需要注意和防止的。 //PLA Daily warns against the Party Constition copying craze turning into “refined formalism”

马克思是个“九○后”(青年观)–观点–人民网 People’s Daily on the rap song “Marx is of the post-90s generation”…how did I miss this fun video from a couple of months ago, on LeTV here, even throws in some English into the lyrics // 从《共产党宣言》预见全球化将成为不可逆转的趋势,到2008年金融危机中西方社会重新发现《资本论》的价值,马克思的“厉害”,马克思主义的“高明”,在历史和现实中一再得到验证。英国历史学家霍布斯鲍姆在一本书中提到,马克思和斯宾塞葬在海格特墓地相距很近的地方,他们在世的时候,斯宾塞是公认的“19世纪的亚里士多德”,马克思则是一位依靠朋友资助的穷人;而如今,朝圣者络绎不绝到访马克思的墓地,斯宾塞的墓地却乏人问津。时间是最好的见证。马克思从未走远,马克思主义也不会为青年所疏远。

Hip Song Gives Karl Marx Good Rap | Sixth Tone The very mention of Karl Marx is enough to put most university students in China straight to sleep. But a new hip-hop song titled “Marx Is a Post-90s,” referring to China’s millennial generation, aims to make Karl cool again. The song, written for an upcoming television show and posted to a social media account of the Communist Party’s youth arm on Sunday, is hoping to wake students from their slumber and help them see Marx as one of their own.

Death of Young Man in Custody Raises Suspicion of Police Brutality-Caixin When the Caixin reporter showed these witnesses a photo of Lei, they all identified the young man as Lei Yang. Internet users left thousands of messages on Weibo account run by the Changping district police and other social media sites calling for an independent investigation. Some slammed the police for launching a media trial of Lei, even before an autopsy was carried out.

划定政策底线 管住“关键少数”–时政–人民网 北京规范领导干部配偶、子女及其配偶经商办企业

五地国资运营平台首次圆桌会议在上海召开:下一步怎么干10%公司澎湃新闻-The Paper 近日,由上海国有资本运营研究院和重庆渝富资本运营研究院共同发起举办的“京津沪渝深”五地国有资本投资、运营公司首次圆桌会议在上海举行。此次与会的五地,国有资本实力都非常雄厚。截至2015年底,五地市属国有企业共有197家,监管总资产15.9万亿,营收4.69万亿,净利润2200亿,在全国省级监管企业的户数占比为20.7%,总资产占比为41.1%,净利润占比高达68.9%。此次与会的五地7家国有资本平台公司,在国企改革中的地位至关重要。借首次圆桌会议之机,大家各自就国资资本投资和运营进行了深度经验交流,剖析了各自的组建过程和运作经验、成效以及面临的问题,还就如何发挥国有资本投资、运营公司功能、服务地方区域经济创新转型展开了富有成效的讨论。

China Holds Writer, Publisher Over Dissent, ‘Forbidden Books’-RFA Sichuan-based writer and publisher Huang Zerong, better known by his pen-name Tie Liu, disappeared from his home last week, police in Sichuan’s provincial capital Chengdu told his wife, Ren Hengfang. Tie, 82, had earlier been detained from March 28 to April 1 on suspicion of “picking quarrels and stirring up trouble.

多数法院尝到完善司法责任甜头–法制网 司法活动的亲历性,要求让审理者裁判、由裁判者负责。构建起一套权责对应统一的司法责任制,是确保法官依法独立行使审判权力、实现公正司法的必要制度保障。     《法制日报》记者从近日召开的全国法院司法改革试点工作推进会上了解到,目前法院系统正在紧紧牵住司法责任制这个“牛鼻子”,狠抓责任制落实与完善,以此实现审判能力和司法公信力的双重提升。

AnchorFOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS

Xi orders Chinese military to step up to meet new risks caused by country’s rising economic might | South China Morning Post In a lengthy article in the PLA Daily yesterday summarising his vision for the People’s Liberation Army, Xi said if nothing was done to improve the force’s capabilities it would not be able to deal with the growing national security risks associated with the country’s ­rising economic might. // 习主席系列重要讲话“军事篇”是强军兴军的科学指南 

Chinese military mulls new policies to seek educated recruits – Xinhua The Chinese military is appealing to qualified young recruits with a string of preferential policies, including financial aid and easy access to employment after service. The favorable policies target graduates and university students, according to a document on recruitment released by the department of defense mobilization under the Central Military Commission and the Ministry of Education Monday. // 军委国防动员部和教育部部署进大学生征兵工作

Spotlight: China’s historical rights within dotted line not deniable: People’s Daily – Xinhua | China’s historical rights within the dotted line in the South China Sea are not deniable despite the attempt of the Philippines to question them by distorting facts, The People’s Daily said in an article published on Monday. The Philippines has asked for the international tribunal, which has not been endorsed by China as a just one, to negate China’s historical rights within the dotted line in the South China Sea, saying they are not supported by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). However, the Philippines, The People’s Daily said, has distorted historical facts and purposefully misinterpreted the UNCLOS.

中国拥有南海诸岛主权的历史事实无可争辩–国际–人民网 大量历史事实表明,中国拥有南海诸岛主权是基于中国人民世世代代最早发现、最早命名、最早开发利用和经营以及历代中国政府对南海诸岛连续不断的行政管辖的基础上而确立的。中国拥有南海诸岛及其附近海域主权和相关权利的历史事实是确凿的,历史脉络是清晰的,历史依据是充分的,历史地位是合法的。中国始终是南海诸岛真正唯一的主人。菲律宾对南沙、黄岩岛的所谓主权要求,无史可据,无法可依,丝毫撼动不了中国在南海的主权地位。 (作者为中国社会科学院中国边疆研究所研究员)

外交部副部长谈南海:中国不会成为另一个苏联_网易新闻 2016年5月19日,外交部副部长刘振民会见由美国《新闻周刊》资深作家布罗德、《芝加哥论坛报》副总编肯普夫、《洛杉矶时报》社论版副总编希利等组成的美国媒体代表团。刘振民副部长介绍了南海问题历史经纬、菲律宾提起南海仲裁案背景等情况,并就美南海“航行自由计划”、中方如何应对仲裁结果以及南海问题对中美关系的影响等回答提问

New lighthouses make sea safer-China Daily China is perfecting maritime navigation aids for civilian vessels in the South China Sea, as the country has built two lighthouses and four beacons on the Xisha Islands, sources told China Daily. In addition to the visible aids – lighthouses, beacons and buoys – China is also offering radio aids to support navigation, such as the Automatic Identification System, a tool used around the world for marine contacts.

全国双拥工作领导小组:发挥双拥工作优势,大力支持深化国防和军队改革-中华人民共和国民政部 为贯彻落实党中央、国务院、中央军委和习近平总书记有关决策指示,助推改革强军战略实施,全国双拥工作领导小组日前印发《关于发挥双拥工作优势大力支持深化国防和军队改革的通知》(以下简称《通知》),就充分发挥双拥工作优势、支持深化国防和军队改革有关工作进行部署。 《通知》指出,各级各部门要正确理解把握中央决策意图,着力增强支持军队改革的政治自觉和行动自觉,以实际行动拥护改革、支持改革、参与改革。

阿里巴巴10亿砸向北斗,北斗民用落地-搜狐科技!!! 阿里巴巴集团正与中国兵器工业集团公司,共同推进中国自行研制的全球卫星导航系统——北斗卫星导航系统在民用化市场的落地。 5月18日,兵器集团与阿里巴巴宣布合资成立的千寻位置网络有限公司宣布,已建成的150个框架网站和近600个基准站网络投入运行,正式在全国范围提供亚米精度的实时动态定位导航服务 //on Alibaba working with Norinco, spending 1B RMB on building out Beidou navigation system ecosystem

AnchorHONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN

Taiwan Drops Charges Against Protesters in Government Sit-In – The New York Times The decision was made on Friday, immediately after Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen, was sworn into office, and announced on Monday by Premier Lin Chuan. The protesters were charged with counts related to the takeover of Taiwan’s cabinet building for several hours on March 23 and 24, 2014. The police used clubs and water cannons to clear the building, leaving nearly 200 people injured.

AnchorTECH AND MEDIA

Xiaomi Revenues Were Flat in 2015 – Fortune Revenue for 2015 reached 78 billion yuan ($12.5 billion), a 5% rise from 2014’s 74.3 billion yuan, a person in the company’s public affairs office said for the first time over the weekend. Taking into account the falling value of the Chinese currency, the yuan, sales rose 3% in U.S. dollar terms. Xiaomi has been mum about the 2015 sales total since founder Lei Jun gave a revenue target of 100 billion yuan ($16 billion at the time) at a government meeting in March last year. The Xiaomi public affairs official, Ge Liang, announced the 2015 figure in an interview this weekend at a Beijing tech conference.

河南省官员确认:跨境电商新政部分条款暂缓执行消费品产经频道首页_财经网 – CAIJING 河南省出入境检验检疫局局长李忠榜5月23日在一次会议上确认,跨境电商新政近日做了一些微调,尤其是检验检疫按照一般贸易出具通关单放行的规则做了调整,暂缓执行,设置了延迟一年的过渡期。 在5月23日中国国际经济交流中心主办的第八十三期 “经济每月谈”上,21世纪经济报道记者从李忠榜处获得上述确认。此前多个消息渠道显示,跨境电商试点城市海关及商检接到“跨境电商网购保税商品核验通关单政策暂缓一年”的上级通知。//reports that parts of the new regulations on overseas ecommerce will not be enforced for at least a year

JD.com CEO mocks Alibaba’s “new found belief in protecting IP” in fiery – World Trademark Review Adding his voice to the discussion on online counterfeiting, the CEO of Chinese online retail giant JD.com has sent an exclusive opinion piece to World Trademark Review. Titled ‘Not all Chinese e-commerce is the same’, it seeks to draw a distinction between JD.com’s approach and that of other Chinese e-commerce platforms. In the piece, JD.com’s founder and CEO Richard Liu is bold in his criticism of other Chinese retail marketplaces. The company’s main rival is, of course, Alibaba Group and the two have sparred publicly in the past. This op-ed does not name Alibaba, but could step up the war of words between the two organisations during the week in which the International Anti-counterfeiting Coalition (IACC) suspended Alibaba’s membership following the threat of a mass exodus of members. A planned keynote from Alibaba’s Jack Ma at today’s IACC conference was also cancelled, with pres

Alibaba Bulks Up Its D.C. Government Affairs Office – Alizila After last year’s hiring of Eric Pelletier, former White House deputy assistant for legislative affairs, as its first head of international government affairs, the China-based e-commerce giant recently added three new staffers to its D.C. office: Malcolm Lee, Alibaba’s new head of policy; Bill Anaya, who will serve as U.S. government affairs chief; and Emily Davis, the company’s new director of political stakeholder relations. (Biographies below.) The new hires—government relations and policy veterans with extensive public and private sector experience—are part of a build-up of Alibaba’s corporate operations in the West  // missed this last month. Wonder if they get any questions in DC about their partnership with Norinco

China’s scary lesson to the world: Censoring the Internet works. – The Washington Post Defensive no more about its censorship record, China is confidently trumpeting its vision of “Internet sovereignty” as a model for the world and moving to make it a legal reality at home. At the same time — confounding Western skeptics — the Internet is nonetheless thriving in China, with nearly 700 million users, putting almost 1 in 4 of the world’s online population behind the Great Firewall. China is the world’s leader in e-commerce, with digital retail sales volume double that of the United States and accounting for a staggering 40 percent of the global total, according to digital business research company eMarketer. Last year, it also boasted four of the top 10 Internet companies in the world ranked by market capitalization

百度清查盗版内容 暂关数千文学贴吧公司频道财新网 面对阅文集团对侵权内容的责难,百度已对3000多个文学类贴吧进行暂时关闭处理,其中包括《盗墓笔记》等热门小说的贴吧。目前,已有部分贴吧在“躺枪”后得到恢复  //  Baidu shuts 1000s of tieba forums, claims about IPR protection

Baidu, Real Estate Site Spar Over ‘Protection Fees’ ~ Business China Li Zhong said he was issuing his open letter to Baidu chief Robin Li due to unfair treatment and failure of a lawsuit to address his grievances. (Chinese article) He says that Baidu engages in practices such as issuing “verified” or “V” status, the equivalent of a Baidu endorsement, to companies that are willing to pay for such a labeling. He also detailed a fee of more than 25 million yuan ($3.8 million) that he says his company has to pay for inclusion in Baidu’s special “brand zone”. Li concludes his message by saying he won’t pay such “protection” money anymore.

AnchorSOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

A Billion Voices: China’s Search for a Common Language: Penguin Special China – Amazon Mandarin, Guoyu or Putonghua? ‘Chinese’ is a language known by many names, and China is a country home to many languages. Since the turn of the twentieth century linguists and politicians have been on a mission to create a common language for China. From the radical intellectuals of the May Fourth Movement, to leaders such as Chiang Kai-shek and Mao Zedong, all fought linguistic wars to push the boundaries of language reform. Now, Internet users take the Chinese language in new and unpredictable directions. David Moser tells the remarkable story of China’s language unification agenda and its controversial relationship with modern politics, challenging our conceptions of what it means to speak and be Chinese.

Why a part of my girls will be forever China – FT.com Now, eight years later, our family is heading back to America, each to a greater or lesser degree a Sinophile. After so many years in China, one of us has lost her taste for American food, distinctly preferring noodles to burgers; another loves speaking Mandarin and will really miss the chance to practise her tones back home, and the third says she “never really left America in the first place”. I will not reveal which of us is which. But I sometimes think the most Chinese person in our family is lily-white, Italo-German-Swiss-American me. My kids might be Chinese by birth but by temperament they are 100 per cent American teen //

AnchorENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH

China will launch the world’s first quantum satellite in July | gbtimes.com It will also attempt to securely transmit quantum information between Earth and space, which could have huge implications for cryptography, as well as testing the possibilities of communication via quantum teleportation. The experiments will also involve collaboration with the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna.

Beijing to adopt China’s tightest fuel standards by Jan : Xinhua | Reuters The new rule for diesel and gasoline called “Beijing Six” standards will cut car pollutants by an additional 15 to 20 percent in the city, Xinhua reported, quoting a researcher with Beijing’s environmental protection bureau. In addition, China’s “National Five” standard, equivalent to the Euro V specifications will be implemented nationwide in January 2017.

AnchorEDUCATION

语文版中小学教材换4成课文深度新京报网 昨日,语文出版社正式发布了这套修订后的教材,有40%课程的内容已经替换,而教材内容总量也减少了15%。新增了大量传统文化方面的内容,并关注学生减负。据了解,在修订过程中,将温书林的《南京大屠杀》一文换成张纯如所写的《南京大屠杀》一书节选,课文题目为《死里逃生》。// revisions to primary school textbooks announced. Our kids used the current version for grades 1-3, working on grade 4 one now, much slower back in DC

AnchorBEIJING

300万北京二环内能买到地?揭开隐秘的胡同土地市场 – 经济观察网 - 专业财经新闻网站 经济观察报记者采访发现,像铜光胡同1号这样的胡同地块由个人购得的情况并非孤例。过去几年中,类似的地块出让后,不少被改建为私人会所。但2014年之后,这种情况逐步减少,但最近似乎又出现了一波回潮。

 

Follow me on Twitter @niubi for updates between newsletters

Send comments/tips/complaints to [email protected]

If you like Sinocism please spread the word using this link.

And if you really like Sinocism, feel free to donate some money, with Bitcoin or a credit card. Thanks.