The Sinocism China Newsletter 06.19.14

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

Vietnam, China Make No Progress in Oil Rig Talks – ABC News A top Chinese diplomat and Vietnamese officials made no progress in talks Wednesday about an increasingly bitter confrontation over a giant oil rig China deployed in the disputed South China Sea, officials said. State Councilor Yang A Vietnamese official familiar with the talks said no progress was made during the discussion between Yang and Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Related: China, Vietnam agree to properly handle sensitive bilateral issues – Xinhua | English.news.cn he Chinese government and the Communist Party of China always attach great importance to China-Vietnam relations from a strategic long-term perspective, and are willing to work with the Vietnamese government and party to jointly promote a healthy and stable comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership, visiting Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi said while meeting Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh. Yang was here to attend the annual China-Vietnam Steering Committee on Cooperation, which was held in Beijing last year.

准确把握香港特别行政区宪制基础–观点–人民网 Page 1, top right People’s Daily commentary on correctly grasping the Constitutional foundations of the Hong Kong SAR…this is not going to go over well in much of Hong Kong…but what can they do?  //  中央领导人发表的关于香港问题的讲话,都十分强调“一国两制”是一个完整的概念,强调讲“两制”,必须同时讲国家主体实行社会主义制度,香港保持原有的资本主义制度和生活方式不变。但香港确有一些人对此的认识是不到位的,也确有人想把香港往独立或半独立的政治实体的路上引。要纠正这种倾向,同样必须讲宪法,讲宪法在香港特别行政区的效力,在香港树立维护宪法、遵守宪法的观念。因为国家主体实行社会主义制度,是宪法规定的,香港可以实行资本主义制度,也是宪法规定的,从遵守宪法出发,内地各地方有宪法义务维护香港实行的资本主义制度,香港也有宪法义务维护国家主体实行的社会主义制度。

China bans unauthorised critical coverage by journalists | Reuters Reporters in China are forbidden from publishing critical reports without the approval of their employer, one of China’s top media regulators said on Wednesday. The rule comes as the government intensifies a crackdown on freedom of expression, both online and in traditional media. The State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television published the rule in a circular announcing a crackdown on false news and journalists who take bribes or extort money from their sources.

Related: 新闻出版广电总局:禁止记者私自开展批评报道_网易新闻中心 新华网北京6月18日电 国家新闻出版广电总局18日下发通报,要求各新闻单位对记者站、网站、经营部门、采编部门进行集中检查清理,认真纠正存在的违法违规问题,把好新闻采访关,禁止记者站跨行业、跨领域采访报道,禁止新闻记者和记者站未经本单位同意私自开展批评报道。

Related: [视频]八起新闻违法违规典型案件被通报_新闻频道_央视网(cctv.com) Wednesday CCTV Evening News lists 8 cases of fake news and media extortion

China plan to gag lawyers online denounced as insult | Reuters Lawyers who fight judicial injustice often with the help of online platforms and media have been dubbed “fight to the end” lawyers by the public. “This is very clearly targeted at suppressing ‘fight to the end’ lawyers as the restrictions are all about the methods they commonly use. If these methods are abolished, they will not be able to do much,” another Beijing-based lawyer familiar with the draft rules said on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the issue.

Chinese netizens call Beijing’s Google crackdown “a digital seal-off” | Offbeat China In China’s history textbooks, one of the factors that have been attributed to the fall of the Qing Dynasty and the subsequent “century of humiliation” was the feudal rulers’ policy of seclusion, which cut off China from the rest of the world and thus hampered its progress. Is Beijing repeating an age-old mistake by extensively blocking Google services? Many Chinese netizens think so…Partly thanks to the country’s formal education, in which the harms of Qing Dynasty’s “seal-off” policy and the benefits of Deng Xiaoping’s open-up policy in later 70s are emphasized repeatedly, the fear of being cut off from the rest of the world runs deep in China, especially when it comes to science, technology and development.

Beijing’s population exceeds 21 million – Xinhua The figure is based on a sample survey of population last year. It showed that the population of Beijing’s permanent residents reached 21.15 million, 455,000 more than that of 2012. According to the survey, 13.12 million people in the capital held a Beijing hukou — or Chinese household registration, 62 percent of the total population. The additional 8.03 million inhabitants are migrant workers who had been living in the city for more than half a year and who are therefore classified as permanent residents.

For a century, the mansion sat above Sydney Harbor. Then China’s nouveau riche arrived. – The Washington Post US is underpricing EB-1 visas at 500k a pop…could charge $5m and not see much drop in demand  //  Credit Suisse estimates that 18 percent of all new houses and apartments in Sydney are bought by Chinese citizens. In Melbourne, the figure is 14 percent. These figures are likely to rise. To stimulate the economy, the Australian government recently expanded a program to grant permanent residency to foreigners prepared to invest at least 5 million Australian dollars (about $4.6 million) in Australian businesses. Ninety percent of the applicants so far are Chinese.

Li Says China to Avoid Hard Landing as GBP Trading Starts – Bloomberg “The Chinese government is adjusting its economic operations to ensure the minimum growth rate is 7.5 percent, the level to ensure job creation,” Li said in a speech at Mansion House in London yesterday. Inflation won’t exceed 3.5 percent, he added, without specifying a time period for the prediction.

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

China Auditor Blames CIC Mismanagement for Investment Losses – Bloomberg A dereliction of duty by managers, inadequate due diligence and post-investment management were identified in 12 investments made abroad by the fund between 2008 and 2013, according to results of an audit conducted last year. Six of the deals were unprofitable, four of them had unrealized losses, and two may potentially lose money, according to the report released today on the auditor’s website, which didn’t name the investments or disclose their size.// 审计署曝中投82亿违规投资房地产等多个问题_财经_腾讯网 

China’s May Home-Price Growth Slows Signaling Weaker Demand – Bloomberg Prices fell in 35 of the 70 cities last month from April, according to a statement by the National Bureau of Statistics today, the most since May 2012. In the financial center of Shanghai, prices decreased 0.3 percent from April, the first decline in two years, while they fell 0.2 percent in the southern business hub of Shenzhen.

5月份北京二手房价格环比跌幅最高 创28月新低_网易新闻中心 Beijing secondary home prices fell 0.9% m/m in may, biggest decline in 28 months  //  在二手房方面,北京5月的环比跌幅为0.9%,4月二手房价格环比下跌0.2%,自2012年1月出现0.9%的跌幅后,创下28个月最大跌幅。

煤老板因资金链断裂集中抛楼 撤出资金或超百亿_财经_腾讯网 some coal bosses selling Beijing properties to raise cash…they were known for buying in bulk…floors or entire buildings…A Beijing University researcher estimates Shanxi coal bosses may have sold upwards of 10B RMB of Beijing property to raise cash  //  “据我们粗略测算,为缓解资金困境,山西煤老板从北京等地房地产市场撤出的资金或超过百亿元。”北京大学中国经济研究中心一位研究人员对记者表示。

地方政府平台“跃跃欲试”海外融资 新华社——经济参考网 Economic Information reports that local government financing vehicles looking to raise money overseas, starting with the Beijing Infrastructure Investment Corp…who rates these bonds and audits the financials? gee, wonder what could go wrong //  《经济参考报》记者近日独家获悉,北京市基础设施投资有限公司(以下简称“京投”)酝酿海外大手笔发债——在海外成立20亿美元中期票据计划。京投公司承担北京市轨道交通等基础设施项目的投融资、前期规划、资本运营及相关资源开发管理等职能,是迄今为止国内第一家地方政府融资平台进军海外发债融资。据了解,目前已有数家地方政府融资平台开始和投资银行及评级机构接触,对海外发债融资“跃跃欲试”。

Chinese FDI in US rides in fast track|China DailyChina’s foreign direct investment (FDI) in the United States jumped 144 percent in the first five months of this year to $2.03 billion, according to the Ministry of Commerce. The strong growth came amid a 10.2 percent decline of China’s overall FDI in 146 countries and regions in the world in the five months, ministry spokesman Shen Danyang told a briefing in Beijing on Tuesday. The total of $30.8 billion in FDI was made by 2,766 Chinese companies.

China Focus: Direct yuan-sterling trade begins – Xinhua | English.news.cn “The direct yuan-sterling trade is good for forming a direct exchange rate between the renminbi and the British pound and reducing exchange costs,” the People’s Bank of China (PBOC) said in a statement on its website. The PBOC promised “active support” for yuan-sterling direct trading and the China Foreign Exchange Trading System said yuan-sterling direct trade will start on Thursday.

Plans for High-Speed Rail Line Backed by Private, Foreign Money Progress – Caixin The eastern province of Shandong is moving ahead with plans to build a high-speed rail line funded mainly by local governments and private investors, but an expert questions whether the project is necessary. The planned Jiqing line, which will link the cities of Jinan and Qingdao, will be 306 kilometers long and cost 54 billion yuan. It is the first high-speed rail line in the country to be mainly backed by funds from local governments.

Uganda Reserves $8 Billion in Rail Projects for Chinese Bidders – Bloomberg Uganda plans to invite six Chinese companies next month to compete for as much as $8 billion worth of contracts to expand the country’s railway network and help improve trade routes with four bordering nations. Uganda signed an agreement with the Chinese government giving companies from the Asian nation exclusive rights to lead the project, Ugandan Works Minister John Byabagambi said by phone yesterday from the capital, Kampala. He declined to identify the companies that will participate in the bidding.

中国“高铁战略”布局:正与数十国家谈合作_国内_新京报网 China talking High Speed Rail deals with ten countries

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

农行原副行长杨琨受审 据传曾欠下30亿元赌债_网易新闻中心 corruption trial of former Bank of agriculture VP Yang Kun starts in Nanjing. he is rumored to have had 3B rmb in gambling debts, had dirty dealings with the developer of Beijing’s Solana Mall

农行原副行长杨琨受贿细节:曾一次收8斤金条_网易新闻中心 details of Yang Kun’s alleged corruption

许俊:用社会主义核心价值观构筑共有精神家园–理论-人民网 head of Hainan propaganda department on page 7 of Thursday’s People’s daily on using Socialist Values to build a common spiritual homeland…there is a serious Socialist Values campaign underway…echoes of Anti-Spiritual Pollution and Anti-Bourgeois Liberalization campaigns?  //  核心价值观是精神支柱,是行动向导,它承载着一个民族、一个国家的精神追求。精神家园是人们安身立命的思想基地、奋发进取的动力源泉。在新的历史条件下实现“两个一百年”奋斗目标和中华民族伟大复兴的中国梦,必须坚持用社会主义核心价值观构筑当代中国人共有精神家园,巩固中华民族团结奋斗的共同思想基础。

Minitrue: Delete Article on Foreign Infiltration of CASS – China Digital Times (CDT) Find and delete the article “Central Commission for Discipline Inspection Group Head Indicates CASS Permeated by Foreign Influence.” (June 18, 2014) 查删《中纪委驻院纪检组长指出社科院存在受境外势力渗透问题》。

四川新龙县维稳办副主任遭枪击身亡(图)_网易新闻中心 stability maintenance failure in the Garze Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture in Sichuan county…deputy director, of Tibetan nationality, of the local stability maintenance office shot and killed

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

CPC official vows to enhance media cooperation with Africa – Xinhua The publicity chief of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Tuesday met with foreign representatives who attended the second Forum on China-Africa Media Cooperation in Beijing. Liu Qibao, head of the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, said media cooperation is an important part of China-Africa cooperation. He called on China and African nations to further enhance exchanges and cooperation in radio, film and television and take the opportunity of this forum to deepen media cooperation, in a bid to promote China-Africa friendly relations and make a contribution to the realization of the Chinese dream and the African dream.

China eyes stronger soft power of culture, says vice premier – Xinhua ideological retrenchment and increasing constriction of speech may not help  //  China will give more attention to cultural development, which has already been made a national strategy, to boost its soft power, and expand cultural and people-to-people exchanges with other countries to open up larger room for reciprocal and win-win cooperation in the world, Liu said as she delivered a speech at the opening ceremony of the third annual conference of the Taihu World Cultural Forum.

Japan’s ‘Patriotic Wives’: praise for Abe, censure for China, South Korea | Reuters Angered by demands from China and South Korea that Japan apologize again for wartime misdeeds and mistrustful of mainstream media and politicians, ultra-conservative Japanese housewives, mums and working women are speaking out. One of the few leaders to win their praise is Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Conversations with members of Hanadokei and another group, Soyokaze, offer a window into the mindset of ultra-conservatives who back Abe’s push to revise Japan’s post-war constitution and recast the country’s past with a less apologetic tone.

Publishers fighting back against bestsellers highly critical of China, South Korea – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun A growing group of publishing companies are banding together to battle the recent popularity of books and magazines that are disparaging of China and South Korea and even appearing on a top-10 bestseller list. In late April, about 20 employees of various-size publishers gathered in a meeting room in Tokyo to discuss ways to halt the publication of articles and books that are stirring up hatred of other nations and races. “The words used in advertising for weekly magazines that are critical of China and South Korea are just terrible,” one participant said

Researchers in Japan, China develop new ‘oriental’ hybrid roses – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun A Japanese horticultural scholar and a Chinese research team have grown new rose hybrids by crossing modern varieties with ancient Chinese strains in what they hope will become a symbol of friendship between their respective nations. The joint project began in 2002 when Hirokazu Fukui, a professor of horticulture at Gifu University’s Faculty of Applied Biological Sciences, teamed up with the research team from China’s Liaoning Academy of Agricultural Sciences.

Chinese Employees Remain at Iraqi Oil Fields despite Violence – Caixin China National Petroleum Corp. (CNPC) has evacuated some employees from its al-Ahdab oil field, which is 180 kilometers from Baghdad, a source close to CNPC’s project in Iraq said. Most employees at CNPC’s other three oil fields – Halfaya, Rumaila and West Qurna – along with those at China National Offshore Oil Corp. (CNOOC)’s only oil field Maysan, are staying, the source said. Meanwhile, their British and American counterparts are leaving the country. Exxon Mobil has evacuated all of its employees from the West Qurna oil field, in which it and CNPC each hold a 25 percent stake. About half of BP’s employees in the Rumaila oil field have left. BP’s share of the contract is 37 percent and CNPC has 38 percent.

习近平“治军”关键词:从严 实战 转型|习近平治军|习近平_凤凰资讯 People’s Daily Online on three keywords of Xi Jinping’s approach to managing the military–rigor, realistic combat training [not actual “real combat, I hope], transformation  //  6月18日,人民网刊文《习近平“治军”关键词:从严实战转型》,文章称习近平高度关注军队的建设和发展。十八大以来,习近平曾多次视察部队,足迹遍及解放军陆、海、空、二炮各个军种,考察慰问武警和民兵,治军魄力凸显。文章还梳理了习近平治军的关键词,即从严、实战、转型。

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

South China Morning Post Turns to the Mainland | Asia Sentinel Today the newsroom is demoralized and angry at what reporters regard as unwarranted manipulation of copy beyond normal sub-editing for style, flow and length. In some cases critical paragraphs were grafted on under reporters’ bylines rather mysteriously. Staffers who spoke to Asia Sentinel did so on anonymity as they feared being fired if instances cited were too specific. Hong Kong political content and China news seem to suffer the heaviest ghosting.

Hong Kong Media Tycoon Blames China For Attack on Website The head of a cutting-edge Hong Kong media empire has blamed the ruling Chinese Communist Party for a cyberattack on one of his newspapers, as the organizers of a ballot on universal suffrage in the former British colony extended the voting period following a similar attack. The websites of the Apple Daily in Hong Kong and Taiwan were inaccessible for much of Wednesday after a series of distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, Next Media chairman Jimmy Lai said.

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Alibaba Integrating Online and Offline with 2D Code — China Internet Watch Alibaba announced a new 2D code strategy called ‘Ma Shang Tao’ last week. It will become a significant part of company’s “cloud+ terminal” strategy. Alibaba chief operating officer Zhang Yong said, “Any code would become a terminal and it is no longer just a simple business card but more services and content.”. This 2D code strategy will achieve seamless connections between any people, people and information, and people and objects. The first 5 apps released are ‘product code’, ‘service code’, ‘interaction code’, ‘media code’ and ‘shop on the code’.

Billionaire JD.com founder lines up next challenge: beating Alibaba | Reuters On top of shares in a $37 billion company that mean he’s now worth close to $8 billion, Liu still controls 84 percent of voting rights at JD.com. If that causes corporate governance concerns, it makes his resolve to take on his biggest competitor, the Alibaba Group Holding Ltd [IPO-ALIB.N] e-commerce juggernaut co-founded by Ma, all the more personal.

阿里京东加速推进金融、物流布局 新华社——经济参考网 6月18日,京东宣布“618”年度大促销进入最高潮,为此京东的仓储、配送和客服等部门已经做好了准备。同一天,支付宝宣布推出NFC(近场支付)支付功能,将首先支持北京等35城市的公交刷卡出行,随后还将进一步支持各类线下小额刷卡业务;阿里方面还介绍,在今年“618”促销之际,阿里将通过旗下的菜鸟网络提供“大家电全国2600个地区免费送货入户”和“大家具全国100个城市免费送货入户和安装”服务。

支付宝推“未来公交”计划_公司新闻_中证网 Alipay rolls out “future of public transportation” plan, includes NFC payments

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

Image crisis bluebook spurs Chinese social management – Xinhua A bluebook published by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences on Wednesday highlights five pressing image crises in China: public safety, social order, pollution, public services, and the image of government officials. “It could be a blueprint for China to step up social management efforts,” said Tang Jun, editor in chief of “The Research Report on Image Crisis Response (2013-2014).” The report is based on analyzing 2,074 image crisis cases reported by the mainstream media in 2013. Among the 31 regions being evaluated, Guangdong Province is the most “problematic,” followed by Beijing and Henan Province.

Bill Gates Meets Alibaba’s Ma to Discuss Philanthropy – Bloomberg Bill Gates and Chinese billionaire Jack Ma met in Beijing to talk about charity, according to a post by the world’s richest man on Twitter today. Ma, who set up a charity trust potentially worth more than $3 billion in April, threw a dinner for Gates on June 17, according to the official Weibo microblog account of property developer Ren Zhiqiang, who was present. The event, attended by other Chinese businessmen, was held to discuss charity prospects in China, according to Ren’s Weibo post, which included photos.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

Medical Tourism Business Gets 50 Mln Yuan from Investment Company – Caixin Sequoia Capital China signed the agreement with Beijing Saint Lucia Consulting Co. Ltd., the first investment deal in the country’s growing medical tourism industry. Saint Lucia Consulting is a member of the Medical Tourism Association (MTA), which is based in the United States. The MTA is a global non-profit association for the medical tourism and “international patient” industries. Being a member of MTA allows the company to negotiate with foreign hospitals directly, said Cai Qiang, the founder of Saint Lucia Consulting.

崔永元:农大校长抨击纪录片是对我职业的侮辱|崔永元约农大校长辩论|崔永元纪录片_凤凰资讯 public opinion battle over GM foods continues

 

FOOD AND TRAVEL *

China’s Tujia gets $100M funding to grow holiday home rental site Luo Jun, CEO of Tujia, China’s biggest holiday home rental site, seemed so excited about his firm’s US$100 million series C funding that he revealed it on Weibo almost immediately after he got the cash. “I got up early and saw a mail saying the company’s $100 million series C funds arrived yesterday,” he posted this morning, accompanied by a photo of a humble Chinese breakfast of rice porridge.

 

BEIJING *

北京拆迁村民“强占”回迁房讨说法_图片频道_财新网 villagers in Fengtai, Beijing get sick of waiting for their promised new apartments after land reclaimed, try to seize the apartments in newly constructed building…second time this has happened in Beijing in a couple of months. Slideshow of the protest

再生水设备成摆设影响市民节水热情_头版_新京报电子报 Beijing doesn’t have enough water for those 21 million people, yet conservation and recylcing measures are not ready for prime time  //  北京水资源严重紧缺,但却浪费严重。昨日,新京报记者调查,北京市内多个小区具有再生水设备和管道,但冲厕仍使用自来水。一公益组织随机走访发现,北京小区的再生水系统正常运转率不足10%,每年造成大量水资源浪费。

北京逐步成境外毒品中转地 吸毒人员每年增10%_新闻_腾讯网 Beiijng seeing 10% annual increase in drug users, says city government

非京籍家长被迫办离婚让孩子顺利入学|非京籍|孩子入学_新浪新闻 latest round of Beijing school reforms have made it harder for non Beijing hukou holders to get their kids into schools…some migrants finding being divorced simplifies the process, so they are getting divorced… //  央广网北京6月18日消息 据中国之声《新闻晚高峰》报道,北京严查非京籍儿童五证。打工子弟小学称,自己招不到孩子了,不是,孩子们不想来,而是打工人员子女的五证大多办不齐。那办齐五证的呢?   朝阳区的非京籍小孩入学,五证+父母双社保,是标配。可部分父母一方创业,社保办在了原籍。那怎么办?还有一招,离婚。

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