The Sinocism China Newsletter 09.12.14

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

Chinese president arrives in Tajikistan for SCO summit, state visit – Xinhua The 14th meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of State will discuss regional security and economic cooperation. Leaders will exchange views on current international and regional issues of major concern. Leaders will also sign and issue the Dushanbe Declaration, approve a series of documents on SCO expansion and pass a resolution on the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. An agreement on the facilitation of international road transport among the SCO member states is also likely.

Related: China’s Xi repeats calls for political solution for Ukraine | Reuters “Relevant parties need to get to the bottom of the matter and fundamentally sort out and resolve the problem,” Xi told Putin during a meeting in the Tajik capital Dushanbe on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organisation summit.

Related: China backs Russia’s 2015 SCO presidency – Xinhua Putin looks very small next to Xi

Related: Xi proposes to build China-Mongolia-Russia economic corridor – Xinhua Chinese President Xi Jinping proposed here Thursday to construct an economic corridor linking China, Mongolia and Russia. Xi put forward the proposal at a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin and Mongolian President Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj on the sidelines of the 14th summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO). Highlighting that the development strategies of the three neighboring countries are highly compatible, Xi noted that both Russia and Mongolia have positively responded to China’s vision on building an economic belt along the Silk Road.

Lu Wei: the internet must have brakes – China Media Project Speaking to a panel on “the future of the internet economy” at the World Economic Forum’s 2014 Summer Davos in Tianjin yesterday, Lu Wei (鲁炜), the director of China’s State Internet Information Office (SIIO), said there must be “mutual integration” of international rules for internet governance and the national laws of various countries. “Freedom and order are twin sisters, and they must live together,” said Lu Wei, according to a report from the official Xinhua News Agency. “The same principle applies to security. So we must have a public order [internationally]. And this public order cannot impact any particular local order.” Lu Wei, a former municipal propaganda minister for Beijing, has a reputation in China as a hard-liner bent on strengthening control over the internet, and particularly social media. Many Chinese journalists attribute China’s 2013 crackdown on “Big V” users on Sina Weibo to Lu.

Related: The Future of the Internet Economy | World Economic Forum – The Future of the Internet Economy Video of SIIO Director Lu Wei’s panel

Related: Facebook进入中国或被高层否决 触犯中国两大底线_行业_产经_一财金网 A Chinese journalist quotes Lu Wei on the sidelines of the Tianjin Summer Davos conference as saying that Facebook will not be allowed to launch operations in China. If accurate a surprisingly blunt statement from China’s top regulator, and a statement that may cause issues in DC, as at some point people on Capitol Hill are going to start questioning why Chinese Internet firms have unfettered access to the US market, including the financial markets, while US firms are almost entirely banned from China’s massive Internet market  //  “但要掌握两个底线,一是不能损害中国国家利益,二是不能损害中国消费者的利益,对于占了中国的市场、挣了中国的钱,又来危害中国的行为,我们决不允许。” 9月10日,2014夏季达沃斯论坛在天津举行。对于Facebook即将进入中国的传言,国家互联网信息办公室主任鲁炜严肃地对记者表示:不可以。

Related: Facebook Says Chinese Want Its Site as Regulator Says No – Bloomberg Lu Wei, minister of China’s Cyberspace Administration, told state-run media at the forum that Facebook “cannot” win access any time soon. Facebook said before its 2012 listing that substantial legal and regulatory complexities prevented its entry into China, home to the world’s largest number of Internet users. After his speech yesterday, Smith declined to comment on when Facebook would be able to enter China. Smith said he was unaware of Lu’s remarks as reported by the China Business News.

Related: L. Gordon Crovitz: The Internet Power Vacuum Worsens – WSJ In March the administration asked Icann, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, to suggest a plan for overseeing the Internet after September 2015, when U.S. governance is scheduled to end. The U.S. charged this group, which maintains the root-zone file of domain names and addresses, with somehow finding mechanisms to prevent other governments from undermining the permissionless, free-speech Internet built under U.S. oversight. Instead, Icann set up a process to hand control over to governments. Under the current “multistakeholder” system, an advisory group of governments has only as much power as other stakeholders, such as Web registries, website owners, free-speech groups and other nonprofits. But in August, Icann quietly proposed changing its bylaws to rubber-stamp government decisions unless two-thirds of the Icann board objects. In turn, Iran has proposed that the government group move to majority voting from the current consensus approach. That would enable the world’s majority of authoritarian governments to rewire the Internet more to their liking.

Related: [视频]网信办:践行社会主义核心价值观_新闻频道_央视网(cctv.com) CCTV Evening News Thursday on SIIO and using the Internet to promote Socialist Values, calls the Internet an “important position” in the battlefront to disseminate “thought culture” (a better translation for “思想文化”?)…SOHU Chairman Charles Zhang is interviewed… //  央视网消息(新闻联播):截至今年6月,我国网民规模达6.32亿。互联网界人士表示,网络日益成为宣传思想文化战线的重要阵地,网络媒体要通过这一阵地,让社会主义核心价值观深入人心。

China asserts paternal rights over Hong Kong in democracy clash | Reuters Zhang, 51, dressed in a black suit and a navy blue striped tie, delivered a blunt response. “The fact that you are allowed to stay alive, already shows the country’s inclusiveness,” he answered, according to two people in the room who declined to be named. Zhang’s office did not respond to several faxed requests for comment. // last night on Twitter there was discussion of the translation of the quote used here. Apparently the original Chinese used was “仍能安然坐在这儿,反映我们的宽大”. No word/correction from Reuters yet, but if the assertions on Twitter are correct this translation a big mistake

Related: Beijing tells HK pro-democracy lawmakers they’re lucky it’s so lenient – Quartz Quartz decided to go with a different translation of the reported comments  //  Correction (Sep. 11, 2014, 8am EST): A previous version of this story relied on a translation from another news source of Zhang’s remarks as “the fact that you are allowed to stay alive, already shows the country’s inclusiveness.” This turned out to be inaccurate. The text and headline of this post were changed to reflect that.

China stocks rise to 18-month high on stimulus outlook | Money | The Malay Mail Online 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 //  China’s stocks rose, sending the benchmark index to an 18-month high, amid speculation easing inflation will allow room for government stimulus to bolster the world’s second-biggest economy.

Related: 两市成交4300亿元创近四年新高_证券_中证网 Thursday combined trading volume on Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges hit 4 year high

National Geographic-In Myanmar, China’s Scramble for Energy Threatens Livelihoods of Villagers In western Myanmar a Chinese-backed energy and trading hub is taking shape on a remote island.

A New Definition of Chinese Patriotism-Foreign Policy China’s ruling Communist Party has a message for Chinese citizens: You are for us, or you are against us. That’s the takeaway from a widely discussed Sept. 10 opinion piece in pro-party tabloid Global Times, in which Chen Xiankui, a professor at the School of Marxism at Beijing’s Renmin University of China, proclaims that “love of party and love of country are one and the same in modern China.” Chen’s article has caused an uproar on Chinese social media, with many netizens scoffing at his formulation of patriotism.

Chinese Journalists Describe Extortion Scheme – NYTimes.com “In the Chinese financial media, there’s usually no firewall between the business side and the editorial side,” Zhao Jing, a journalist who writes regularly for Caixin, a weekly business magazine based in Beijing, said in a telephone interview. Mr. Zhao, better known by his pen name, Michael Anti, said Caixin had safeguards to deter such practices. “There’s too much pressure for reporters to go along with business demands, and so you’re certainly going to get problems like this,” he said. “Under a business model like this, it would be very easy for soft stories or extortion stories to spread, because demand for advertising revenues determines coverage.”

China Agrees to Seek High Level Meeting With Japan, Korea – Bloomberg China and Japan agreed with South Korea to push for a meeting among their top diplomats by the end of this year as the countries explored ways to repair ties marred by historical and territorial spats. Diplomats from the three nations met in Seoul yesterday for the first high-level talks in 10 months and agreed to restore momentum for cooperation, the foreign ministry in Seoul said in an e-mailed statement. Its spokesman Noh Kwang Il said earlier at a briefing that his country would consult with China and Japan on reviving an annual three-way summit among their heads of state.

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

China Steps Up Defense of Probes as Foreign Businesses Complain – Bloomberg In a rare joint press briefing in Beijing yesterday, China’s three antitrust regulators rebuffed such claims by saying only about 10 percent of anti-monopoly investigations have involved foreign businesses, echoing comments made by Premier Li Keqiang earlier this week. They also rebutted allegations that companies were denied legal representation during the probes.

China Fines Volkswagen and Chrysler for Antitrust Violations – NYTimes.com The fines, which totaled $46 million, were the latest in a series of tough measures by China against what it considers monopolistic practices. In recent months, foreign companies in a range of industries including automobiles, technology, pharmaceuticals and food packaging have faced increased scrutiny, including raids and allegations of unfair practices.

Small Business Won’t Save China – WSJ If Beijing really wants to help the private sector and small business, it should slash the ranks of inefficient SOEs. There have been steps in this direction: 19 provinces have put together plans for overhauling local SOEs, and Beijing is now pushing even the biggest firms to shape up. But the government seems more interested in using antitrust legislation to make examples of foreign multinationals than in breaking up state-backed oligopolies. Tolerance for real corporate failure remains low: This year friendly officials have organized informal bailouts for many companies near bankruptcy or default. Thus while Beijing has embraced the “creation” part of the creative destruction that drives market capitalism, it still needs to get more comfortable with destruction.

China’s Global Mining Play Is Failing to Pan Out – WSJ it is becoming clear that China’s shopping spree yielded numerous bad investments. Many big-ticket deals are losing money, running into unexpected costs or generating significantly less output than expected…Chinese officials acknowledge difficulties. Last year, the head of China’s mining association estimated that 80% of all overseas mining deals had failed, though he didn’t elaborate, according to state media.

Yuan Loan-Backed Bond Surge Prompts China Risk Warnings – Bloomberg China is experimenting with new types of securities at a time when deposits are dropping at a record pace and soured debt is rising amid a property slump. Non-performing loans rose to the highest in five years in June as China Construction Bank Corp. to Bank of China Ltd. reported sluggish profit growth. “Because most asset-backed securities investors are banks, securitization doesn’t help lower the lending risks the whole banking system is exposed to,” said Li Ning, a bond analyst in Shanghai at Haitong Securities Co., the nation’s second-biggest brokerage. “The risks one bank issuer faces are simply transferred to the bank investor.”

Alibaba IPO: A Big Deal, and, Backers Argue, a Real Steal – WSJ With about a week to go before the deal, the army of banks hired by the Chinese e-commerce company is trying to convince fund managers that its shares are cheap given Alibaba’s growth potential and future profits. Their pitch: Alibaba could start life as a public company at a valuation that is about 24 times its projected 2015 earnings, people familiar with the conversations said. That is below the 29 times currently commanded by Chinese Internet rival Tencent Holdings Ltd. TCEHY -0.55% The discount is bigger when Alibaba is compared with the valuation of more than 35 times for Facebook Inc., FB +0.63% the largest technology company to stage an IPO in recent years.

为什么城市化离不开农地农房入市 – 经济观察网 - 专业财经新闻网站 Zhou Qiren in Economic Observer on urbanization and rural land reform// 周其仁–几点结论(一)城市化把大批农村人口转为城镇人口,也带动其他经济资源加快在城乡间流动与集聚。由此,要求重新界定城乡一切经济资源的财产权利,特别是确立普遍的转让权,形成新的市场秩序。(二)上世纪80年代,我国迈出了土地使用权可转让的重要步伐,以此适应当时改革开放的紧迫要求。但是,这项改革尚未完成。迄今为止,城镇国有土地可以合法入市转让,但是曾经得到宪法原则支持的郊区与农村集体土地使用权的转让,仍广受歧视、得不到有效的法律承认、保护与服务。在同地不同权的基础上,形成“政府一手征地、一手卖地”的畸形体制,其负面效果越来越大,危及我国城市化的健康进行。(三)深化改革无可避免。现实的可行路径,是“逐步收缩征地规模、探索农地农房入市”。为此,一手实施“先行先试”的主动改革,一手从各地农地农房入市的实际经验中提取政策和法律元素。两相结合,正有望勾画出城市化“新土改”路线图。(四)继城镇国有土地入市之后,城镇内外农村集体土地及农房也以多种方式入市转让,不但为大批农民工进城提供着落脚之地,且具有在得到合法承认后进一步改善、升级的巨大潜力。既然破绽百出的“理论”解不开它,喧嚣的歧视奈何不了它,哗众取宠的“方案设计”也替代不了它,我们不妨踏踏实实,多看多想,继续从中吸取营养和力量。

金融机构反腐加码 地方银行多名高管落马_财经频道_一财网 CBN on anti-corruption work in financial institutions, specifically local banks where there is a rise in local bank officials going down…must be like shooting fish in a barrel for the CCDI…any estimates of how much of the LGFV debt was stolen via corruption?  //  有些银行董事长、行长大权独揽,在行里可以说就是土皇帝,事无巨细都去管,到处去伸手要钱,但最容易寻租的还是贷款审批权。

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

昆明3·01暴恐案今日一审开庭_网易新闻中心 The Kunming Train Station terrorists go on trial today

China to fast-track prosecution of terrorists, extremists – Xinhua Chinese prosecutors, especially those in Xinjiang, are asked to fast-track cases involving terrorists, religious extremists and manufacturers of firearms and explosives, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate (SPP) said Thursday. Counterterrorism is to be a priority of prosecutors as part of tough measures against the “three evil forces” — terrorism, separatism and extremism. Human trafficking cases will also be fast-tracked, said a statement issued after a meeting on Xinjiang issues.

Suicide Cases Across China Tied to Drive Against Graft – NYTimes.com Under Chinese criminal law, the death of a suspect ends the legal investigation. Researchers believe that in some cases officials are killing themselves to protect their wives, children and parents, hoping their families will survive and not lose their wealth. “Yes, they are scared of being prosecuted,” Mr. Yip said. “At the end they feel they have so much money, ‘If I am gone, at least my family, my wife, my children, at least they will be O.K.’ ” Suicide also forecloses the possibility of the almost inevitable confession, which may implicate political or business associates, who may take revenge on the family, Mr. Liao said.

China’s anti-corruption trillions | FT Alphaville this was the subject of a dinner conversation a few days ago. there is a lot of money at stake. How much has gone overseas and is any of that recoverable?  // While the distribution of seized illegal gains among central and local governments would be subject to technicalities, we are talking about a lot of money that could help to fix quite a few problems. China’s fiscal income was CNY12.9tn and fiscal deficit was CNY1.1tn in 2013. As of end-June 2013, the balances of China’s local government funding vehicle (LGFV) and local government debt were estimated at CNY7tn and CNY10.9tn, according to the National Audit Office. While family members have been allowed to retain illegal proceeds in cases where the official(s) involved are deceased or out of jurisdication, we expect tougher efforts by Beijing to seize all illegal gains under the new Code of Criminal Procedure effective in 2013, the Ministry of Public Security’s “Fox Hunting 2014” project and the APEC anti-corruption network established in August 2014.

Special Report: China turns up heat on ex-security chief with crash probe | Reuters long rumored. Is it correct to read this as Reuters relying on a single source for this?  //  Fourteen years later, investigators are looking into her death. Their sudden interest has nothing to do with Wang herself. It has to do with the identity of her ex-husband – once one of China’s most powerful men and now the prime target in President Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption campaign. Investigators are probing the death of the first wife of Zhou Yongkang, China’s retired security czar, a source with direct knowledge of the investigation told Reuters. They are looking for evidence of foul play by Zhou in the crash, the source said.

Chinese judicial departments better handle petitions – Xinhua The number of people filing complaints to China’s judicial departments in the first seven months of this year increased by 7.1 percent year on year, according to the Commission for Political and Legal Affairs of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, which oversees the country’s judicial and law enforcement affairs. The increase is attributed to new measures that help petitioners. When they feel wronged or abused by local authorities, many ordinary people turn to government or Party departments at higher levels. Some even make it to the central government.

涉法涉诉信访事项15日内答复是否受理_深度_新京报网 近日中央政法委就涉法涉诉信访连发“三文件”,以解决个别政法机关涉法涉诉信访受理立案门槛高,各单位间“踢皮球”、瑕疵案件不纠正等问题。信访入口方面,首次提出涉法涉诉信访应在15日内作出是否受理信访事项的决定。

With bullet trains as a new Silk Road, China tightens embrace of its restless West – The Washington Post Within the region, experts say, the economic divide between the Han-majority northern city of Urumqi and the mainly Uighur, more rural south is sharp and growing. Implicitly acknowledging the existence of that divide, officials say the government is also hoping to promote a “southern Silk Road” that would pass through southern Xinjiang and revitalize ancient trading posts such as Kashgar and Hotan. Plans to establish textile factories hold out the promise of jobs, while the eventual extension of the high-speed train on a new route to the south is supposed to promote what the Communist Party calls a more “modern” way of thinking.

内地公务员连续7年未调薪 工资不透明遭指责|工资|公务员_凤凰资讯 civil servant salaries have not increased since 2006?  //  编者按:我国公务员工资上一次调整是2006年。此后7年间,调整公务员工资的建议多次被提及,却始终没有切实动作,同时还承受了巨大的舆论压力。有专家分析指出,除了舆论,经济形势和财政压力,也是影响公务员工资调整的重要因素。

人民日报刊文:公务员工资该涨还得涨 不涨也得好好干|党校|基层干部_凤凰资讯 “坚决防止市场交换原则渗透到党内政治生活中来,绝不搞权力寻租、权钱交易”——日前,在中央党校秋季开学典礼上,中央领导同志语重心长。此言并非凭空泛指,实有深意在其中。 啥是市场交换原则?“等价交换”是也。市场经济通行的“一分钱一分货”,到了政治领域却寸步难行。官商勾结、卖官鬻爵,放到任何国家,都登不上台面,为法所禁。但别以为官帽不能买卖的道理,人人皆遵行。莫说贪官污吏们,现实中一些人“为官不易”的牢骚话、“为官不为”的消极状态,与此也大有干系。

越狱逃犯高玉伦被抓细节:找亲戚讨食遭捆绑_新闻_腾讯网 last of three prison escapees in Heilongjiang caught, after 9 days on the run…remarkable given the size of the manhunt

The End of the Dalai Lama? | Tricycle Robert Barnett, director of Columbia University’s Tibetan Studies program, thinks the meaning of this statement has been lost in translation. “It is in line with the tradition whereby all lamas are expected to demonstrate diffidence about the question of their return as a kind of humility,” Barnett told Tricycle. “The convention is that they are only able to return if their followers pray intently for them to do so.” Barnett also holds that there is a more significant issue that the Dalai Lama addresses here, which seems to escape both his German interlocutors and the American media. “He is clearly saying that his role as the leading figure in Tibetan Buddhism will not continue,” says Barnett.

人民日报评论员观察:走出利益博弈时代的治理困境–观点–人民网 走出利益博弈时代的治理困境,利益是一个关键的变量,需要更多的考量。事实上,有些地方恰恰在利益上前倨后恭,导致小事变大、大事变炸:没出事时,对利益很吝啬;出了问题,却又舍得花钱去“摆平”。在一些老信访案件中,如果一开始就公平公正处置利益问题,也许很多信访问题根本不会发生。在一些PX事件中,若能从一开始就把利益分享机制设计好,群众很可能成为项目的拥护者、安全的监督员,又何来“一闹就停”的困局?这个问题,值得不少地方深思。   《 人民日报 》( 2014年09月12日 05 版)

人民日报人民论坛:警惕“悬疑新闻”背后的“标题党”–观点--人民网 People’s Daily warns against “sensational headlines”…Internet media still not fully on board with the program, will be soon enough

CCTV anchor Rui Chenggang could face death penalty-WantChinaTimes WantChinaTimes seems willing to print all the rumors // Wang Guoxiang, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences specializing in the Middle East, military affairs and anti-terrorism, slammed Rui on his Weibo account over the Mid-Autumn Festival long weekend, saying the TV anchor was “facing the death penalty” and that his “brain must have broken down” from taking so much money and even acting as a spy. “This world is very fair,” Wang wrote, adding, “no matter how high your position, don’t forget that you were raised by the Chinese people and that everything you have was given to you by this land.” Wang has stood by his comments in the face of questions from netizens, saying that he has a honorable reputation and never releases fake information. His post about Rui has been forwarded several thousand times and has not been deleted by Chinese censors.

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

Truth behind Chigua Reef construction – Global Times The 2002 Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea (DOC) stipulates that claimants to certain islands of the South China Sea should neither occupy new reefs nor build on occupied ones. For a long time, China has been an exemplary observer of the DOC, while Vietnam and the Philippines have constantly violated it when their citizens migrated there or they built permanent facilities, including runways. They have virtually pushed China into a corner. Manila and its Western supporters have a rather ludicrous logic that the Philippines and Vietnam can do anything on the Nansha Islands and China can’t take any countermeasures.

Philippines displays ancient maps to debunk China’s sea claims | Reuters would be nice if this just stayed at map warfare… //  The Philippines on Thursday put on display dozens of ancient maps which officials said showed that China’s territorial claims over the South China Sea did not include a disputed shoal at the centre of an acrimonious standoff.

The South China Sea: Waves of trouble | The Economist Bill Hayton’s splendid book lucidly covers these disputes in all their complexity from virtually every angle—historical, legal, political, economic and strategic. A journalist with the BBC and author of a previous book on Vietnam, he tells a good yarn, even when the topic is as dry as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Indeed, he may be the first person ever to have written an exciting account of a meeting of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN). // The South China Sea: The Struggle for Power in Asia on Amazon

Asia arms up to counter growing Chinese might–AP The scramble to spend more defense dollars comes amid spats with China over contested reefs and waters. Other Asian countries such as India and South Korea are quickly modernizing their forces, although their disputes with China have stayed largely at the diplomatic level. Asian countries now account for about half of the world’s arms imports, with China leading the way by quadrupling its annual military budget over the past decade. The growth in military spending has largely kept pace with economic expansion, although it’s been pulling ahead in China, Vietnam and several other countries this year.

A ‘Stain’ on China: Full Statement from Mother of Murdered U.K. Businessman – China Real Time Report – WSJ There followed many months during which I, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on my behalf, had a series of contacts with the Chinese authorities, who undertook to “facilitate a solution.” However, by August of last year I had still received no useful answers or undertakings from the Chinese authorities. I therefore issued a public appeal to China’s leaders to show decisiveness and compassion so as to provide closure to our continuing nightmare. Now, a year later, nothing has been done, as far as I am aware, to produce the promised solution.

Summary Report from Latest Carlisle PLA Conference: The Chinese People’s Liberation Army in 2025 | Andrew S. Erickson Leading experts on the Chinese military gathered at Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania, on February 21-23, 2014, for a discussion on “The PLA in 2025.” The conference was convened by The National Bureau of Asian Research, the Strategic Studies Institute of the U.S. Army War College, and the U.S. Pacific Command.

Silent Contest – Wikipedia given what is apparently happening to some US foundations/NGOs now, and the overall atmosphere, perhaps this was a playbook…depressing…was discussing this with some Chinese friends recently who had just come across it…they found it very credible…even more depressing // Silent Contest (“较量无声” video on Youtube) is a Chinese communist military propaganda film produced by the People’s Liberation Army’s National Defense University Information Management Center, purporting to expose and explain the secret battle, or conspiracy, the United States is waging against the People’s Republic of China.[1][2] The documentary runs for 92 minutes. According to the official newspaper Global Times, “The film is an exploration of the belief that the US remains China’s enemy and has never stopped its strategies to westernize and divide China.

反间谍法(草案)全文_中国人大网 NPC draft of new espionage law

Senior CPC official vows to enhance China-Cuba ties – Xinhua China vowed continued exchange of governing strategies with Cuba as communist party officials from both countries met in Beijing on Thursday. The two countries share time-honored friendly relations, Liu Yunshan, member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, said during a meeting with Cuban Communist Party (CCP) members in the Great Hall of the People.

Ren Xiao – Academic Input and China’s Foreign Policy Making – YouTube Foreign policy making in China is becoming increasingly complex. As China is faced with new domestic and international challenges, more and more actors have become involved in the process, and China’s international relations specialists are playing a larger role than before by providing more input. There are different ways for the academic and policy research community to have impact. These include providing policy briefs, advisory meetings, personnel exchange (a two-way street: Foreign Ministry officials serving as diplomats-in-residence at the academic institutions and academics serving at the Chinese embassies in the key capital cities), targeted research projects, and individual contact. People’s Congresses and the Consultative Conferences are also channels for the academics to make themselves heard. Nowadays the “revolving door” arrangements are basically seen as a positive development in China, and more practices in this line are encouraged. It is a changing system with “Chinese characteristics.”

Soft power: Confucius says | The Economist Through the Hanban, a government entity, China provides the centres with paid-for instructors and sponsors cultural events at them. Its spending is considerable, and growing rapidly. In 2013 it was $278m, more than six times as much as in 2006. China’s funding for Confucius Institutes amounts to about $100,000-200,000 a year on many campuses, and sometimes more (Oregon received nearly $188,000 in the last academic year). By the end of 2013 China had established 440 institutes and 646 classrooms serving 850,000 registered students. They are scattered across more than 100 countries, with America hosting more than 40% of the combined total. There are plans for another 60 institutes and 350 classrooms to be opened worldwide by the end of 2015.

魅力何来?孔子学院10年建成465所覆盖123个国家–教育–人民网 Friday People’s Daily on the success of Confucius Institutes in the 10 years since they were launched. Yes there appears to be a growing backlash in places like the US and Canada, but most of the rest of the world is more than happy to have these  //  从2004年3个国家3所孔子学院起步,截至2014年8月,全球已有123个国家设立465所孔子学院和713个孔子课堂,注册学员达85万人。孔子学院快速发展,已然成为一张闪亮的中国名片,被誉为“迄今为止中国出口的最好最妙的文化产品”。那么,孔子学院的魅力由何而来?

经中央军委主席习近平批准总政治部印发《关于加强战斗精神培育的意见》-新华网 After CMC Chair Xi Xinping’s approval the GPD publishes an opinion on strengthening “fighting spirit” training

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Total Active Weibo App Users Down by 10.95% in Aug 2014 — China Internet Watch Total number of Weibo (Sina Weibo) mobile app’s active users was 67.53 million in August 2014, down by 10.95% according to Chinese research company EnfoDesk. Total number of Weibo app launch times and total app usage time were also down by 9.91% in August 2014 according to EnfoDesk. The data is based analysis on 1.56 million Android mobile phones by EnfoDesk.

UnionPay, Apple Said to Agree on U.S. Firm’s New Payment Technology – Caixin A deal between China UnionPay and Apple Pay will intensify competition with third-party payment companies like Alipay, an industry insider said. That competition also involves two rival technologies: the near field communication (NFC) type Apple uses versus quick-response (QR) codes, which have suffered a setback in China.

China Exclusive: Chinese cartoon to showcase Xinjiang culture – Xinhua Chinese animators are working on a new series that tells the coming-of-age story of a legendary Uygur girl in Xinjiang. The 104-episode cartoon series, “Princess Fragrant,” is based on the tale of the Fragrant Concubine, a beautiful Uygur woman from Xinjiang’s Kashgar City. According to legend, she became a concubine of Emperor Qianlong in the 18th century during the Qing Dynasty

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

China Scholars Twitterati 100 | Jonathan Sullivan’s Research Pages To be included on the list, people had to be currently employed at a University in a research and/or teaching role (this excludes recovering academics, policy analysts at think tanks, and collectives) and to have academic publications on China (and/or Taiwan). Tweeting activity had to reach a certain threshold in terms of number of tweets and consistency/recency.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

珍禽离奇死亡之谜_目击_新京报电子报 depressing pictures of pollution at an Inner Mongolia lake and dying birds…first exposed in Chinese media last week I believe

组图:广东森林公安查获457只穿山甲死体_新闻_腾讯网 slideshow of a haul of 457 dead pangolins in Guangdong

When China Cleans Its Air, Health-Care Costs Plummet – Businessweek The economic costs associated with pollution—including health-care expenses, loss of labor productivity, and premature death—correspondingly dropped more than 50 percent, according to estimates by the researchers. Specifically, the researchers correlated reduced air pollution over the course of a decade with 141,457 fewer hospital or doctor visits, 31,810 fewer hospital stays, 969 fewer trips to the emergency room, 951 fewer cases of bronchitis, and 2,810 fewer premature deaths.

 

FOOD AND TRAVEL *

Rotten Food ‘Wikipedia’ Fights China’s Fake Meat – Bloomberg Outraged, Wu decided to take matters into his own hands. So, he put his master’s degree on hold to create what he describes as a “Wikipedia” that tracks food safety and questionable manufacturing in China. He called it “Throwing It Out the Window,” — a name inspired by a story he read on U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt supposedly tossing a sausage from the window after hearing about food production horrors. Since its inception in 2011, Wu’s site has compiled a list of more than 3,000 instances of potentially unsafe food and now has more contributors than he can count.

 

BEIJING *

经济参考网 – 京郊旧村改造“村民自治”逼退承租人 专家建议建立公开有效的听证制度 Economic Information finds problems with the implementation of the transformation of villages in the Beijing suburbs

 

JOBS AND EVENTS *

Calling All China Hands | Overseas Press Club of America Event Name:  China Hands Reunion Event Date and Time:  12 September 2014 – 12:30pm – 8:00pm Event Location:  Club Quarters, 40 West 45th Street, between 5th and 6th Avenues.Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in New York (TECO-NY), at 1 East 42nd Street.

Follow me on Twitter @Niubi

Subscribe to the Free Sinocism China Newsletter! Enter Your Email In The Box Below And Start Getting Smarter About China.