The Sinocism China Newsletter 10.17.14

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

China to strengthen auditing of military in battle on graft | Reuters The new auditing rules are designed to “strengthen the ability to investigate, and banish, the phenomenon of corruption”, the Defense Ministry said on its website. Officers with responsibility for funds will fall squarely within the scope of the audits, with particular attention paid to older officers, it added, to ensure they cannot simply leave and take along their ill-gotten gains. The buying and selling of military positions has long been a problem for China’s armed forces. Officers who paid bribes to be promoted see corruption as a way to earn a return on the investment.//corruption crackdown in PLA just getting started

Related: 《军队领导干部经济责任审计规定》发布 – 中国军网 中国军网北京10月16日电(褚宗伟、解放军报记者张晓祺)经中央军委主席习近平批准,总参谋部、总政治部、总后勤部、总装备部日前联合发布施行新修订的《军队领导干部经济责任审计规定》。这是新形势下加强和改进军队领导干部经济责任审计工作、强化对权力运行制约和监督的重要举措,对于确保军队领导干部依法行使经济权力,切实把权力关进制度的笼子里,推动军队作风纪律建设和反腐倡廉建设,将发挥重要作用。

Leaders of China and Japan Are Likely to Meet, Briefly, for First Time – NYTimes.com The officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the negotiations, said the hoped-for meeting between Japan’s prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and his Chinese counterpart, President Xi Jinping, had been months in the making and involved behind-the-scenes diplomatic efforts by both nations. While they have not received final word from the Chinese side, they said they were now optimistic that the two leaders would meet briefly — perhaps for about 15 minutes — during the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting, or APEC, a summit of regional leaders that Mr. Xi will host.//The latest Yasukuni BS not going to help make this happen

Related: Japan PM sends offering to war dead shrine, angering China | Reuters There was no sign of cabinet ministers, although NHK public television said Health Minister Yasuhisa Shiozaki sent an offering. A ruling party lawmaker tweeted that three ministers planned to visit on Saturday. “China reiterates that only by Japan earnestly and squarely facing, deeply reflecting upon its history of invasion and clearly distancing itself from militarism, can China-Japan relations realize healthy and stable development,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said in a statement expressing “serious concern” after Abe’s offering.

Related: Abe Meets Li Despite China Criticism of Shrine Offering – Bloomberg The exchange of greetings at the Asia-Europe Meeting in Milan today — confirmed by Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga — comes as Abe seeks a summit with President Xi Jinping at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in Beijing next month. Abe and Li shook hands at a dinner event, the Nikkei newspaper reported, citing Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroshige Seko.

依法治国首先是依宪治国_国内_新京报网 Friday Beijing News on ““rule of the nation by law means, first and foremost, ruling the nation in accord with the constitution”” // 中共中央总书记习近平指出,宪法的生命和权威在于实施,依法治国首先是依宪治国。如何让宪法有效实施?中央已给出方向:要进一步健全宪法实施监督机制和程序。专家认为,四中全会应该制定宪法监督机制和程序的具体方…习近平:一切违宪行为必须追究: 2012年12月4日,当选中共中央总书记仅20天,习近平就在纪念现行宪法公布施行30周年大会上发表讲话,重申宪法高于一切。习近平说,一切违反宪法和法律的行为,都必须予以追究,要“深刻吸取十年‘文化大革命’的沉痛教训”。在中央党校政法部主任张恒山看来,刚刚接任中共中央总书记的习近平,通过宪法纪念大会上的讲话阐述了他的执政思想。

Related: Xi’s missing terms emerge again – China Media Project Qian Gang in September  //  As I wrote in my last post, the 18th Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party will meet for its 4th Plenum next month. Party media have already reported that the meeting will “research the thorough promotion of rule of the nation by law.” I posed the question: would the Xi Jinping statements that “rule of the nation by law means, first and foremost, ruling the nation in accord with the constitution” or “the crux in governing by laws is to govern in accord with the constitution” appear at the 4th Plenum? Now, one month ahead of the Plenum, Xi Jinping’s September 5 speech seems to have raised the probability that we will see these watchwords next month. I urge observers of Chinese politics to watch these words closely. Though of course, things are never quite so simple. I noticed, for example, that while the full text of Xi Jinping’s September 5 speech as released by Xinhua News Agency does have both of these terms, Xinhua’s official news release on the meeting did not mention them at all. Nor did the news about the meeting on the front page of the People’s Daily make any mention of them.

Related: Xi ‘Rule of Law’ Meeting Will Strengthen Communist Party – Bloomberg President Xi said at the parliament’s 60th anniversary last month that its powers are constitutionally enshrined and the key to perfecting the system is “unswerving adherence to the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party”. “The fourth plenum discussion will focus on how to accentuate the authority of the constitution, which enshrines the party’s leadership,” said Zhan from Peking University.

Related: Constitution Debate Holds Broader Reform Implications -Caijing July 2013  //  Three schools of thought have arisen as a result of the ongoing debate: “anti-constitutionalists” who oppose any form of constitutional government in China, those who support the establishment of socialist constitutional government, and those who believe socialism and constitutionalism are incompatible, as represented by Peking University Law School Professor He Weifang and East China University of Political Science and Law Professor Zhang Xuezhong. The latter faction argues in favor of drawing up a new constitution. The core differences between the three viewpoints reflect diverging opinions about China’s future political reform path.

Related: 习近平论依法治国–时政–人民网 坚持和完善人民代表大会制度,必须全面推进依法治国。发展人民民主必须坚持依法治国、维护宪法法律权威,使民主制度化、法律化,使这种制度和法律不因领导人的改变而改变,不因领导人的看法和注意力的改变而改变。 ——在庆祝全国人民代表大会成立60周年大会上的讲话(2014年9月5日)

China’s Xi to Artists: Follow the Party Line – Businessweek In a revealing moment, Xi asked Zhou Xiaoping, a well-known Internet blogger in his early 30s, and a second blogger, Hua Qianfang, also in his 30s, to stand up and be recognized by the largely older attendees. Xi praised Zhou’s and Hua’s essays—known for their patriotism and anti-Western fulminations—for having “positive energy.” Zhou has recently gained notoriety for a particularly virulent essay entitled “Nine Knockout Blows in America’s Cold War Against China.” In that essay, Zhou savages the tendency of young Chinese to worship the West and accuses the U.S. of using the Internet and its cultural exports, such as Hollywood movies, to try to undermine China’s social and political system. Zhou also attacks America as being viciously anti-China and defaming Chinese, he says, to a degree seen previously only in Hitler’s vilification of the Jews.

Related: Undermining China, One Knockout at a Time – NYTimes.com July 2014 Titled “Nine Knockout Blows in America’s Cold War Against China,” the essay takes on topics including Superman and the American education system. At one point, it even compares the “indiscriminate smearing” of China in many “fabricated or exaggerated” American news reports to Hitler’s treatment of the Jews. The man behind the essay is Zhou Xiaoping, an independent commentator and, in his words, “everyday Internet user.” Last year, Mr. Zhou wrote another widely distributed essay, in which he lashed out against Kai-Fu Lee, the former head of Google China, accusing Mr. Lee of faking a cancer diagnosis and favoring the sexual harassment of women. Mr. Zhou was also reportedly involved in a website called Fenbei.com, but he says he left before that website became involved in a pornography scandal. //very disturbing, a rabid xenophobe. Is Xi aware of his past as an alleged pornographer? More important, does he just hate foreigners, especially Americans? Not uncommon in his generation, as much as we may wish it were not so…

Related: Minitrue: Hush Story on Xi’s Praise for Patriotic Bloggers – China Digital Times (CDT) Minitrue: All websites find and delete the article “Xinhua: What Kind of People are the Internet Writers Xi Jinping Questioned?” and related content. (October 16, 2014) 全网查删《新华社客户端:习近平问起的网络作家是何许人?》一文及相关内容

Related: 新华社酸文:习近平问起的网络作家是何许人?诨号“周带鱼”是也-墙外楼 在昨日由习近平总书记主持召开的文艺工作座谈会与会人员中,除了文学界、影视界、曲艺界的权威人士,还有两位年轻的网络作家。 习近平总书记在讲到互联网文学时,停下来问:“听说今天来了两位网络作家,是哪两位啊?” 周小平、花千芳迅速站起来并向总书记举手示意。 “你们好!”总书记说。 两位年轻的网络作家略显紧张地回答:“您好,总书记!” 座谈会结束时,习近平还走到他们面前,亲切地说:“希望你们创作更多具有正能量的作品。”

Related: 社评:围攻周小平不是网络大V的光荣_评论_环球网 网络作家周小平、花千芳15日应邀参加文艺工作座谈会,并有幸与国家领导人握手,受到亲切鼓励,成了互联网上最热的话题之一。周小平以“请不要辜负这个时代”等网络文章知名,一直被自由派大V们看成“自干五”的代表,后者又一次对周小平发动了集体猛攻。   妒忌、不服气大概是不少网络大V这次围攻周小平的原因之一。客观而言,如果有自由派网络大V受邀去参加那个文化名人云集的座谈会,并有机会与国家领导人交流的话,他们估计会为此很骄傲,少不了在网络上晒一晒。   文人相轻就不多说了。然而周小平获得了参会的荣誉之后,再次面对网上语言暴力的洗礼,这大概是互联网舆论真实面貌的最新缩影。

Related: 习近平点名翌日 官媒整版刊发周小平文章_中国-多维新闻网 北京时间10月15日召开的文艺工作座谈会中,习近平提到了中国网络作家周小平的名字,座谈会结束时,习近平叮嘱周小平“创作更多具有正能量的作品”。而在习近平点名周小平翌日,官媒《参考消息》在16日刊发的报纸中连刊三篇周小平的文章。

Related: Xi Jinping’s Talks at the Beijing Forum on Literature and Art | China Copyright and Media The original text of the speech has not been published. This summary was published by Xinhua on 15 October.

Xinhua Insight: China renews war on poverty – Xinhua From 1978 to 2010, China lifted around 660 million people out of poverty, amounting for over 90 percent of the world’s total relieved poverty population, according to the country’s leading group office of poverty alleviation and development. Along with overall GDP growth targets, the government is focusing on raising the income of the country’s population with a current goal to double per capita income from those recorded in 2010 by 2020. In an effort to expand the safety net for those in poverty, the national poverty line was increased from 206 yuan in 1986 to 2,300 yuan in 2011, However, the war on poverty still has a long way to go, with over 80 million people still mired in poverty by the national standard. // an amazing achievement

Traffic returns to Mong Kok after police tear down barriers in dawn operation | South China Morning Post Lines of police officers advanced towards some 30 protesters early this morning at the intersection of Nathan Road and Argyle Street – the centre of Occupy Mong Kok – and surrounded them within minutes. Other officers dismantled the barricades behind the police cordon. Police then proceeded to remove tents at the intersection. Police adopted a new tactic this morning, with Police Senior Superintendent Catherine Kwan Chui-ching announcing at a 5am press conference that the force would take imminent action to remove road blocks, but would allow protesters to stay at the site. However, as she spoke, hundreds of police officers, many in riot gear, began to dismantle barricades at the intersection of Nathan Road and Portland Street.

Chinese villagers vow to ‘fight to death’ after deadly land clashes – Telegraph “They are like the Japanese and we are the Chinese,” she said. “We will risk our lives to defend our rights. If things do not improve then we will march out of the village – all of us, men, women, children and the elderly – and we will fight to the death. “We are not afraid,” Ms Zhou added. “We fear nothing.”

Related: 云南晋宁征地冲突:村民称遭喷瓦斯_新闻_腾讯网 [摘要]造成8人死亡的云南晋城镇群体性事件有了初步调查结果,村民称开发商雇来上千黑社会,60岁的村民舒唤章被一男子用大刀砍死。村民称从未签过协议,最初承诺的12万元一亩的补偿变成了每人4.3万元。

Related: Victims in Kunming Clash Included Construction Workers – NYTimes.com The government of a southern Chinese city where eight people were killed in a clash over land reclamation on Tuesday said that some of the dead were construction workers who were bound and burned to death by villagers. That grim allegation adds to the widespread shock over the death toll in the confrontation between developers and local residents in a rural area of Kunming, the capital of Yunnan Province

Related: 河南城管进村强拆持砖石群殴村民_高清图集_新浪网 10月13日,河南省驻马店市驿城区开源办事处刁庄村,大量城管进村强拆,与村民持砖块、石头群殴,致使多名村民受伤,甚至头破血流。

Arkansas governor debate: Hopefuls clash over Communist spy – James Hohmann – POLITICO.com With the Arkansas governor’s race slipping away from him, Democrat Mike Ross attacked his Republican opponent Asa Hutchinson for representing a Pentagon employee convicted of “spying for communist China.” Ross, a former congressman, said during a debate Thursday that he doesn’t know any other lawyers “who would represent a spy for communist China” except Hutchinson…The case Ross was referring to involved James Fondren Jr., a Defense Department official who thought he was leaking classified information to a Taiwanese spy who turned out to be secretly working for the Chinese government. Fondren was sentenced in 2010 to three years in prison for espionage.//deny Americans a basic right to legal representation in the name of fighting Chinese Communism…”destroy the village to save it” thinking always constructive…

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

Business leaders call for completion of China investment treaty | TheHill More than 50 business leaders on Wednesday called on President Obama to make the completion of a bilateral investment treaty the focus of meetings next month in China.  The 51 U.S. chief executives sent a letter to the White House supporting a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) and asking the president to make such discussions a high priority with China’s President Xi Jinping in November.

Larry Summers explains why the world is too optimistic about China’s economic future – Quartz But when it comes to predicting China’s medium- and long-term growth, economists are chucking that wisdom out the window, argue former US Treasury secretary Larry Summers and Harvard University professor Lant Pritchett in a new National Bureau of Economic Research paper (registration required). As a result, they say, even the more cautious economic forecasts for China are overestimating the country’s growth prospects. Summer and Pritchett’s calculations, using global historical trends, suggest China will grow an average of only 3.9% a year for the next two decades. And though it’s certainly possible China will defy historical trends, they argue that looming changes to its  authoritarian system increase the likelihood of an even sharper slowdown. // Asiaphoria Meets Regression to the Mean Lant Pritchett, Lawrence H. Summers NBER Working Paper No. 20573 

Chinese debt: The great hole of China | The Economist Even if a huge swathe of loans go bad, the consequence is unlikely to be a Lehman-style financial collapse. For that, thank the Chinese regime’s vice-like grip on its financial system. Most lending is by state-controlled banks, much of it to state-owned companies. If it faced an economy-wide credit crunch, the government would (as it has in the past) simply order banks to lend more. At the same time the country’s vast foreign-exchange reserves mean China need not worry about a sudden drying up of foreign capital, the main cause of many other emerging-economy crises. This combination of control and buffers gives China the time and headroom needed to tackle its debt problem. Unfortunately, it has also bred complacency.

Shrinking China’s Growth Target Gives Room to Tackle Debt – Bloomberg Thirteen of 22 economists said China will shoot for about 7 percent next year, down from this year’s 7.5 percent. Sixteen said the government should change its targeting policy, with nine indicating a range would be better and seven suggesting targets be scrapped altogether in favor of projections or assumptions of growth, as most other nations provide.

Yuan Climbs a Second Week After Exports Gain as Dollar Retreats – Bloomberg The yuan climbed 0.08 percent this week to 6.1258 per dollar as of 10:29 a.m. in Shanghai, China Foreign Exchange Trade System prices show. It fell 0.04 percent today after touching 6.1209 yesterday, the strongest since March 7. The central bank cut the reference rate 0.02 percent to 6.1407 today, compared with 6.1470 on Oct. 10. The yuan traded 0.24 percent stronger than the fixing, within the 2 percent limit.

Huge Vale Ship Arrived in Qingdao with 300,000 Tons of Iron Ore – Caixin Ship has more cargo than government allows, but speculation mounted that Brazilian miner could be allowed to unload directly for first time

China’s land price gains slow in Q3 – land ministry | Reuters The average price of land used for residential homes in 105 major cities rose 7 percent to 5,236 yuan ($854.8) per square metre in the July-September period compared with a year earlier, the China Land Surveying and Planning Institute, a research unit under the land ministry, said in a report on Thursday.

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

Police firearms: Weaponised | The Economist Some special police units in big cities are reportedly better trained than small-town officers. The recent expansion of such units has been rapid and striking. The city of Shanghai has deployed 125 mobile units of elite armed police around the city since May, each carrying at least two guns (following America, Chinese media often describe them as SWAT, or Special Weapons and Tactics, teams).

Former railways ministry official given suspended death sentence | South China Morning Post Zhang Shuguang, who was once the director of the ministry’s transport bureau and its deputy chief engineer, was accused of accepting bribes of more than 47 million yuan (HK$59.5 million) between 2000 and 2011, while he was in charge of procuring rolling stock and other equipment for China’s railway expansion projects, the report said.

党报谈国考热:企业收入再高也难解决北京户口_新闻_腾讯网 此次招录人员超过2.22万,比2014年招考人数增加2710人,创历年新高。据报道,某教育培训机构举办的报考指导会上,会场里座无虚席,连会场后面都挤满了准备报考的考生。看来,反腐并没有让国考热冷却。

贾庆林到清华大学视察调研 校长等陪同(图)_网易新闻中心 Jia Qinglin visits Qinghua

万庆良案后续:多名官员被查 两老板返岗_新闻_腾讯网 近日多个消息显示,已退休一年的广东省委组织部一位原副部长在9月底被纪检监察机关带走调查。在调查万庆良案的过程中,万庆良称曾为了在职务调整时获得好处,向该副部长进行了利益输送。该官员在省委组织部工作期间,曾分管地方干部,退休前还主持了2011年广东地级以上市集中换届。因此预计接下来将牵扯到更多地方官员。

Two Chinese journalists get prison time for false reporting|WantChinaTimes Chen Yongzhou, of daily newspaper the New Express, based in Guangzhou of neighboring Guangdong Province, was sentenced to one year and ten months in prison for inflicting damage on the commercial reputation of Zoomlion with a series of false reports between September 2012 and May 2013, said a verdict by the Yuelu district people’s court in Changsha, Hunan’s capital.

Tyger! Tyger! A Fearful Symmetry | The China Story–Geremie R Barmé He is not impressed with the corruption crackdown, says it is not touching Red princelings // In conclusion, I would observe that as statist Confucianism enjoys ever-new levels of official support (see, for example, our recent posting ‘The Confucian Return in an Age of Extremes‘) any serious student of high-Maoism would be reminded of the Ming-dynasty anti-Confucian firebrand, the philosopher Li Zhi 李贄 (1527-1602), whose key works were reprinted during the mid-1970s’ anti-Confucius campaign. Among his many bons mots, Li remarked of the morality-sprouting bureaucrats of his day (in particular in his Book to be Burnt 焚书) that: They speak of the Way and Morality yet in their hearts they crave lofty position; they are fixated on accumulating prodigious wealth. 口谈道德而心存高官,志在巨富。(《焚书·又与焦弱候》) On the surface they are Moralists, deep down they crave riches; they cloak themselves in the refined garb of the Confucian, but their behaviour is no better than that of dogs and pigs. 阳为道学,阴为富贵,被服儒雅,行若狗彘。(《续焚书·三教归儒说》)

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

USA TODAY latest to be subject to China review Late Wednesday, China’s government-controlled distributor for imported newspapers requested that an electronic version of USA TODAY’s international print product be submitted for review prior to its shipment from Hong Kong. About a quarter of USA TODAY’s print circulation in Asia goes into China. Failure to send a PDF to the state-run China National Publications Import & Export Corporation, or CNPIEC, will result in the paper being held, and reviewed, for a day prior to distribution. “We will comply with local law and supply a PDF, but under protest. The suppression of information in China will not change our editorial selection of news stories under any circumstances,” David Callaway, USA TODAY’s editor in chief, said in a statement.

U.S. seeks more from China, Asian Muslim nations, on Islamic State | Reuters China’s most senior diplomat, State Councilor Yang Jiechi, is expected in Kerry’s home city of Boston on Friday and Saturday, a Chinese diplomat said. Kerry is then due in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim country, for Monday’s inauguration of newly-elected president Joko Widodo.

China reiterates peaceful use of nuclear energy – Xinhua A senior official from China’s atomic energy agency on Thursday reiterated the country’s position on the peaceful use of nuclear energy, saying it will resolutely oppose any proliferation of nuclear weapons. Nuclear weapons proliferation should be solved properly, Wang Yiren, vice chairman of the China Atomic Energy Authority, told Xinhua at a symposium marking the 30th anniversary of China’s entry into the International Atomic Energy Agency. Thursday also marked the 50th anniversary of the detonation of China’s first atomic bomb.

China, Vietnam agree to properly handle maritime differences – Xinhua Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and his Vietnamese counterpart, Nguyen Tan Dung, agreed here Thursday to properly deal with bilateral maritime differences and keep bilateral ties on the right track. Thanks to efforts from both sides, China-Vietnam relations have ridden out the recent rough patch and gradually recovered, Li said in the meeting, which took place on the sidelines of an Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) summit.

China: Sharpening Swords for War? | The National Interest Blog In Asia, China has not yet shed any blood in war.  But a read of Robert Haddick’s new book Fire on the Water: China, America, and the Future of the Pacific painstakingly shows through his level-headed, scholarly, and realist analysis that Beijing is sharpening its swords for war while Washington is distracted by chaos elsewhere.  Haddick rightly judges that the United States “acting as an outside balancer, has played the central role in East Asia’s security, a responsibility that has boosted the prosperity of all.  But just like Europe a century ago, it is doubtful that Asia, left on its own, could shape a stable balance of power in the face of China’s dramatic rise.”// any readers read this book? worth reading?

Robert Haddick | Small Wars Journal Robert Haddick is a contractor at U.S. Special Operations Command. From January 2009 to September 2012 he was Managing Editor of Small Wars Journal. During this time, he wrote the “This Week at War” column for Foreign Policy. Haddick was a U.S. Marine Corps officer, served in the 3rd and 23rd Marine Regiments, and deployed to Asia and Africa. He has advised the State Department, the National Intelligence Council, and U.S. Central Command. In the private sector, Haddick was Director of Research at the Fremont Group, a large private investment firm and an affiliate of the Bechtel Corporation. He established the firm’s global proprietary trading operation and was president of one of Fremont’s overseas investment subsidiaries.

海南文昌建中国首个滨海发射场 可发射重型火箭_新闻_腾讯网 [摘要]中国首个滨海发射基地文昌航天发射场基本竣工,其未来可用于发射重型“长征五号”以及其他系列运载火箭,主要承担地球同步轨道卫星、大质量极轨卫星、大吨位空间站等航天器的发射任务。

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

Q. and A.: Ruby Yang on Hong Kong Youth and Identity – NYTimes.com Ms. Yang’s latest documentary film, “My Voice, My Life,” is another granular look at Hong Kong youth, this time through the eyes of high school students working together to stage a musical. Ms. Yang made it on her return to Hong Kong, after nine years of living and working in Beijing. The film had its official premiere in Kowloon on Oct. 7

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Warner Bros., Brett Ratner cut deal to create Chinese investment fund – LA Times The studio’s Chinese partners in the pact are CMC Capital Partners, a state-backed private equity firm; and Shanghai Media Group, a media and entertainment conglomerate. The other partners in the deal with Warner Bros. — Hollywood’s biggest movie studio — are Ratner’s RatPac Entertainment and WPP, one of the world’s largest advertising firms.

Lenovo to challenge Xiaomi on smartphones with new company in China | PCWorld In China’s smartphone market, Lenovo wants to fight fire with fire against rival Xiaomi by setting up a new mobile devices company that will use a separate brand, and leverage the Internet to sell directly to consumers. The still unnamed company will help Lenovo “attack the fast-growing consumer mobile device market in China,” Lenovo said in a statement Wednesday. Competitor Xiaomi was not named. But the new Lenovo company will operate with what sounds like a similar business model, according to details provided in the announcement.

Xiaomi, Not Apple, Is Changing the Smartphone Industry – Juan Pablo Vazquez Sampere – Harvard Business Review Xiaomi, the four-year-old Chinese smartphone manufacturer, has found just such a sweet spot, and as a result is taking the smartphone industry by a storm. Pundits claim that Xiaomi is just a Chinese copycat of Apple, and not without some reason. Some point to Xiaomi’s product introductions, which are eerily just like Apple’s.  Others point out the strong similarities between Xiaomi’s operating system (named MIUI) and Apple’s iOS. What’s more, Xiaomi’s products rank among the best in the industry in terms of performance. All these cues might lead us to believe that it is competing head to head with the leading smartphone manufacturers. However, looking at the full extent of Xiaomi’s business model reveals just how different – and how disruptive — it is.//just got a Mi4 today. Full Disclosure, a gift from an exec at the company who is a longtime reader, but won’t impact what I say or don’t say about the company…so far quite happy, a nice phone

Alibaba Partners With Quixey, Aims for “Deep Mobile Search” in China – Venture Capital Dispatch – WSJ Alibaba’s search product, which it has been building in partnership with Silicon Valley startup Quixey Inc. for the past year, is an attempt to change that. Alibaba is incorporating the so-called deep-linking technology into YunOS, its mobile operating system, to enable users to find relevant information embedded deep within apps without having to launch the individual apps. The companies were set to announce the partnership at Alibaba’s developer conference in Hangzhou, China, on Friday.  //  is YunOS really a new OS, or just an Android fork?

Chinese Companies Make Late Push to Join Wearable Device Industry – Caixin Firms like Xiaomi and ZTE are joining foreign tech giants in making smart watches and other products, but see the data collected by the gadgets as the real gold mine

Apple’s iPhone 6 Finally Makes Its Debut in China – China Real Time Report – WSJ no more iRiots for Apple phones in China  //  About 100 customers waited in line Friday morning outside Apple’s store in Beijing’s upscale Sanlitun shopping district, which opened its doors at 8 a.m. for buyers who had pre-ordered their new wares—the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6+. That was in part because the phone also went on sale at midnight elsewhere, including offices of China’s biggest telecom carriers.

China’s Wanda Cinema Line Makes Fresh IPO Bid With Government Regulator According to the documents, the cinema line’s total revenue from January to June this year was $410 million, while total revenue last year was $660 million. The IPO prospectus earlier outlined how Wanda Cinema is 68 percent owned by Wanda Investment, in which Wang owns 98 percent. The other 2 percent are owned by his oldest son Wang Sicong.

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

Nets and Kings Continue N.B.A.’s Basketball Diplomacy in China – NYTimes.com “The N.B.A. is just too thrilling,” said Wang Lianying, 24, smoothing an “I ♥ NBA” sticker on her cheek while a Chinese M.C. directed the crowd at the 18,000-seat MasterCard Center to roar its approval for the Brooklynettes, the Nets’ cheer squad. “I was here last year and just had to come again.” The N.B.A. averages five million viewers per game in China for its TV broadcasts, three million more than for its cable broadcasts in the United States last year, and has 80 million followers on its Chinese social media accounts, making it the country’s most popular sports league, by that measure.

China lifts horse racing ban after 65 years China has reopened betting on horse racing in the mainland after a 65-year ban, according to People’s Daily. Betting will be allowed under a new type of lottery and proceeds will be distributed to the national treasury, charity organizations and the horse racing industry. Peter Phillips, the eldest grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II, has been hired as a global ambassador for the China Jockey Club, according to the Telegraph.

Xi Jinping Isn’t a Fan of Weird Architecture in China – China Real Time Report – WSJ Amid calls for patriotic art, Mr. Xi also said buildings such as the CCTV headquarters, which is one of Beijing’s most iconic towers and is nicknamed “Big Pants” for its design akin to trousers, should no longer pop up in the city. Completed in 2008, the CCTV tower, which was designed by renowned Dutch architect Rem Koolhaus, has been the brunt of jokes among Chinese netizens for years.

Ministry to probe swindling of state research funds – Xinhua China’s Ministry of Education will launch a special inspection campaign to investigate misappropriation of state research funds, the ministry said on Thursday. The initiative was announced via the ministry’s official WeChat account, just days after the arrest of four professors raised eyebrows over corruption in China’s scientific research system. The four were among seven professors from five Chinese universities who, according to the Communist Party of China Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, swindled over 25 million yuan (4 mln U.S. dollars) of state funds.

CPC tightens grip on universities – Xinhua The statement clarified the division of powers: Party committees are in charge of colleges’ reform, stability and ideology while presidents should focus on teaching, scientific research and daily operations of the school. Secretaries of Party committees and presidents are not allowed to head any scientific research projects to ensure their devotion to administration of universities, the CPC added.

中国甲骨文34个新字和新字形 34 new oracle bone characters discovered  //  新华网大连10月16日电(记者闫平)中国社会科学院学部委员、中国甲骨学及先秦史研究权威宋镇豪16日在《旅顺博物馆所藏甲骨》首发式上说,中国社会科学院等部门机构的专家从旅顺博物馆馆藏1800多片从未公布过的罕见甲骨中,发现了34个新字和新字形。 专家认为,这一成果是自中国甲骨文发现110多年来的一次重大突破,不仅为中国殷商史研究提供了重要史料,而且对甲骨文和甲骨学发展将起到重要推动作用。

社科院副院长:中国或2年内向所有夫妇放开二胎_网易新闻中心 人民网北京10月17日电 据中央人民广播电台经济之声《天下财经》栏目微博消息,中国社科院副院长蔡昉称,中国可能在两年左右时间内向所有夫妇放开二胎政策;放开二胎政策可能不会显著提高生育率;中国计划生育政策、金融政策、公共政策的调整将给经济增长带来巨大好处。

Ad Featuring Pandas Behaving Badly Quickly Goes Extinct – NYTimes.com The spot was produced by the advertising agency DDB China for state-run China Central Television to run during the October “Golden Week” holiday, “to make people aware of being civilized while traveling,” DDB China said. The pandas behaving badly had a brief run. A shortened version of the advertisement, minus a scene from the director’s cut of a panda peeing in public, was shown on several CCTV channels, but CCTV stopped carrying the spot at the end of the holiday.

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

China’s Nuclear Future (Part I)-Carnegie-Tsinghua Center In this podcast, Carnegie-Tsinghua’s Tong Zhao moderated a conversation between Xiamen University’ Professor Li Ning and Carnegie’s Mark Hibbs on the complexities of China’s energy plans. Li and Hibbs discussed the possibility of resuming nuclear plant approval and construction in China’s inland provinces, where water scarcity and distance from robust infrastructure make nuclear plants more vulnerable.

China pledges another 16 mln USD in aid for Ebola fight – Xinhua The latest assistance will include 60 ambulances, 100 motorcycles as well as tens of thousands of medical kits and protective devices, he said, adding that the Chinese government will also send dozens of Chinese medical experts to help train 10,000 African health care workers. “China, along with other Eurasian countries that have extended help for Africa, is willing to stand together with the governments and people in Ebola-hit areas to tackle the challenge,” Li said. Prior to the latest assistance, China has offered the embattled Africa a total of 234 million yuan (38 million U.S. dollars) in aid to battle the rampant disease since April.

China to punish carmakers who fail to meet fuel targets in 2015 | Reuters China’s fuel economy rules, as stringent as those to be enforced in the United States, Europe and Japan, involve a fleet-wide corporate average target of 6.9 liters per 100km in 2015 and 5.0 liters in 2020. They take effect on Nov. 1. China said on Thursday it would publicly name carmakers who fail to meet the 2015 target and would ban the production of new models that do not meet fuel economy targets, to be determined by a special weight-based formula.

 

AGRICULTURE *

农科院副院长:转基因食品不影响生育能力和后代_新闻_腾讯网 新京报快讯(记者魏铭言)农业部农业转基因生物安全管理办公室今日在武汉向媒体介绍关于转基因食品的”真相”。中国工程院院士、中国农科院副院长吴孔明在演讲中明确,食用转基因食品不会改变人的遗传物质,不会影响生育能力,也不会影响子孙后代。

 

BEIJING *

Chinese art colony’s free-speech illusion shatters–AP not really ever that “free”…annual film festival hassled for years, an artist who performed a risque performance art act (高干) on the roof of a museum in a compound in which we rent a house was detained a few years back…but clearly sounds worse now //  BEIJING (AP) — Just a few weeks ago, oil painters in eastern Beijing’s Songzhuang art district had welcomed foreign reporters into their studios and shown off works tackling such touchy subjects as China’s prisons and Communist Party politics. Over lunch, they candidly lamented the state of free speech in China while chewing on chicken and downing glasses of beer. In a tightly controlled society where dissent is quickly squashed, the artists of Songzhuang appeared to be enjoying a rarely seen degree of creative and political freedom. But then, on Oct. 1, that illusion was shattered.

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