The Sinocism China Newsletter 11.13.14

Today’s Links:

THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT *

1. China, U.S. agree limits on emissions, but experts see little new | Reuters In Oslo, Rajendra Pachauri, the head of the U.N. panel of climate scientists, said the deal was “heartening” even though it fell far short of cuts needed to avert the worst of global warming, from heatwaves to rising sea levels. For China, the targets add little to its existing commitments to wean itself off carbon, environmental experts said. “The statement is an upbeat signal to motivate other countries but the timeline China has committed to is not a binding target,” said Li Junfeng, an influential Chinese climate policy adviser linked to China’s state planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission

Related: Republicans vow EPA fight as Obama touts China climate deal | Reuters But even with China vowing to curb its carbon, Republicans were quick to question the validity of China’s headline-grabbing pledge and used the announcement to rally the party as it prepares to lead Congress by promising to do what it can to rein in the Environmental Protection Agency, whose rules will achieve the bulk of promised emissions cuts. “As we enter a new Congress, I will do everything in my power to rein in and shed light on the EPA’s unchecked regulations,” said Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe, a climate change skeptic and critic of U.N. climate talks who will become the chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in January.

Related: In Climate Deal With China, Obama May Set 2016 Theme – NYTimes.com A variety of polls show that a majority of American voters now believe that climate change is occurring, are worried about it, and support candidates who back policies to stop it. In particular, polls show that majorities of Hispanics, young people and unmarried women — the voters who were central to Mr. Obama’s victories in 2008 and 2012 — support candidates who back climate change policy. But Republicans are betting that despite the polls, they can make the case that regulations to cut greenhouse pollution will result in the loss of jobs and hurt the economy…Mr. Podesta, a political veteran who was also President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff, devised the 2025 targets to ensure that they could be reached without new action from a future Congress. Abandoning them would require the next president to overturn them  //  Podesta was at the same table at the banquet as Obama and Xi, along with Kerry and Rice. DC political rags claim he is leaving the Obama administration soon to take a top role in Hilary Clinton’s presidential campaign. 

Related: China’s pledge to cut greenhouse gases eliminates excuse for other nations – The Washington Post But it’s a start, say many climate experts. “The peak could be Himalayan, but the fact that they’re even talking about it is amazing,” Turner said. “Five years ago, you couldn’t imagine someone would talk about peak emission levels.” Moreover, Xi’s pledge to ratchet up the share of non-fossil fuels from the current 8 percent to 20 percent of the country’s energy consumption could turn out to be more important than the 2030 pledge. To reach that carbon-free energy goal will require immediate and massive action.

Related: China’s Climate Change Plan Raises Questions – NYTimes.com “This is a very serious international commitment between the two heavy hitters,” said Li Shuo, who researches climate and coal policy for Greenpeace East Asia. Still, many questions surround China’s plans, which President Xi Jinping announced in Beijing alongside President Obama after months of negotiations. In essence, experts asked, do the pledges go far enough, and how will China achieve them?

Related: Climate Pact by U.S. and China Relies on Policies Now in Place – NYTimes Experts said that the emissions reductions in the agreement would not be enough to enable the world to keep global warming below the target of a 2-degree Celsius, or 3.6-degree Fahrenheit, rise in global temperatures that was adopted at a climate meeting in Copenhagen in 2009. Beyond the reductions, they said the deal was important for what it showed the rest of the world, particularly other large carbon emitters like India and Russia, in advance of a meeting in Paris next year to negotiate a new climate treaty.

Related: End of China’s coal boom signals cleaner and healthier future | South China Morning Post Teng Fei, an associate professor at Tsinghua University, the lead researcher on an extensive study on the impact of a 2030-carbon peak on China’s economy, said the timeframe was “rather aggressive” and would require smart policies to limit damage to the economy. “Our study shows China’s carbon emissions would peak after 2040 under existing measures on pollution reduction and energy conservation, so it’s a rather bold move to make the peak occur at least 10 years earlier,” he said.

Related: Why Is Beijing Downplaying the Supposedly Huge Climate Change Deal?–Foreign Policy So why isn’t Beijing celebrating and advertising its new willingness to do something for the greater good? Deborah Seligsohn, an expert on the Chinese environment at the University of California San Diego, told FP that Chinese leaders “tend not to enthuse,” so that may in part explain Xi’s reserve. But she also said that Beijing is under fire domestically for its unsuccessful efforts to curb local air pollution, noting that people were furious that authorities managed to clear the air for the visiting APEC dignitaries but can’t do it on a daily basis for their own citizens. “There may be worries that focusing on climate change rather than air pollution doesn’t meet the public’s main concerns,” Seligsohn said via email..

2. In China, Blunt Talk to Reporters on Access – NYTimes.com “Everyone has been aware that this was the policy,” said Joel Simon, the executive director of the advocacy group Committee to Protect Journalists, “and now it has been confirmed that there is an official state policy to discriminate against journalists who cover China critically.” Mr. Xi’s comments formalize a shift in the Chinese government’s approach, said Orville Schell, the director of the Center on U.S.-China Relations at the Asia Society, and a longtime scholar on China. “There is a fundamental contrast between Western notions of the role of the press as a watchdog institution and Chinese, Maoist notions of the press as essentially a megaphone of the party and state,” Mr. Schell said.

Related: A response to President Xi Jinping – NYTimes Editorial The Chinese government has regularly declined to process visas for any new resident Times journalist and has sought to block access to the newspaper’s English-language and Chinese-language websites for people inside China over the past two years after news reports were published by The Times on the wealth of China’s political elite. The Times has no intention of altering its coverage to meet the demands of any government — be it that of China, the United States or any other nation…A confident regime that considers itself a world leader should be able to handle truthful examination and criticism. // Marxist-Leninist governments have a different view of the utility of journalism and, as Beijing calls them, “news workers” (I appended this comment before seeing Orville Schell’s similar one). But hasn’t the New York Times admitted that it altered its coverage, at least through omission, at the request of the US government? It’s probably not smart to claim something that can be so easily countered by Beijing.

Related: New York Times editor on China visa problem: ‘We’re a little bit hostages’ – The Washington Post A breakthrough on China access was absent from a new visa deal announced this week by the United States and China; it’ll extend to short-term business travelers, tourists and students. Fox News anchor Greta Van Susteren criticized the administration for failing to score a victory for U.S. media outlets. “What we have [is] a lopsided deal that favors the Chinese,” argued Van Susteren.  //  disappointing that the White House cut a landmark visa deal without pushing hard on this issue; now the US government looks to have lost what little viable leverage it may have had. At this point I think the NYT’s China issues will linger for years. Bloomberg, which has shown it is willing to self-censor to please Beijing, might have a better shot at resolution but until it jettisons editor-in-chief Matt Winkler (the report about his alleged “China as Nazis” comment was very damaging) and Bloomberg himself makes a high-profile China apology and “new initiative” tour, don’t bet on any progress for it either.

Related: Remarks by President Obama and President Xi Jinping in Joint Press Conference | The White House official transcript

3. U.S.-China Accord Was Months in Making – WSJ After a Chinese fighter jet flew within 100 feet of a U.S. surveillance plane in August, Mr. Obama’s national-security adviser, Susan Rice, received a personal assurance from Gen. Fan Changlong, the vice chairman of China’s powerful Central Military Commission, during a meeting in Beijing that it wouldn’t happen again, U.S. officials said. “He provided her a personal commitment that there would be no more close intercepts,” a senior U.S. official said, and pledged to resolve the issue over the long term…Chinese and American military officials entered eight weeks of intense negotiations, and defense officials said there were five weeklong meetings to work on the content of the deals. One agreement commits both sides to notifying the other of exercises, major reports and military shifts; a second covers rules of behavior for ship operators. However, the military negotiations weren’t concluded.

Related: A Step Forward in US-China Military Ties: Two CBM Agreements | Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative – Bonnie Glaser In 1998 the United States and China established the Military Maritime Consultative Agreement (MMCA) to avoid accidents when their respective maritime and air forces operate in close proximity. Sixteen years of negotiations yielded little progress, until now. Two agreements on military confidence building measures were inked at the US-China summit in Beijing: notification of major military activities and a code of conduct for safe conduct of naval and air military encounters. Together, they hold out promise that despite persisting mistrust and ongoing preparations to deter and defeat the other side if conflict breaks out, the US and Chinese militaries can work together to reduce misperception, increase predictability, and lower the risk of accident that could result in inadvertent escalation in a crisis. Both initiatives were proposed by President Xi Jinping in June 2013 when he met with President Obama in Sunnylands. The accords are works in progress; the areas agreed to so far are limited, but there are expectations that these will be expanded through ongoing negotiations

4. Japan Has Not Recognized Senkaku Island Dispute | The Diplomat In four point statements released concurrently between Japan and China on Friday, Tokyo appeared to cave on Beijing’s key demand that Japan recognize there is a territorial dispute over the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands. Not so, a Japanese official tells The Diplomat. “We did not give in to the Chinese demand of acknowledging the existence of a territorial dispute over the Senkakus,” the Japanese official tells The Diplomat by email.

Related: China slams Japan’s Diaoyu claim – Global Times “We are seriously concerned [about the Kishida’s statement] and strongly dissatisfied with it,” said the spokesperson for the Chinese Embassy in Tokyo on Wednesday. The spokesperson said that the Diaoyu Islands is China’s territory and the four-point agreement reached between China and Japan on November 7 is clear. Asked if the Japanese government’s position remains unchanged that a territorial row does not exist over the Diaoyu Islands, Kishida said at a press conference on Tuesday, “Certainly.”

5. In China, small potatoes corrupt big | Offbeat China Most of these flies are from Guangdong, Zhejiang, Jiangsu and Beijing, which also happen to be the most developed areas in China. The country’s fast urbanization is at the root of most cases. It’s no news that land sales have been a big part of local GDP in China. Cadres can get fat pretty easily by feeding on land sale kickbacks or demolition compensations. This is also why these cases of “small potatoes corrupt big” are more often than not coupled with violent land grab. For China, flies could pose bigger risk than tigers in years to come. As one netizen commented: “Flies are many and too small to receive major attention from the top.” // The vast majority of people will never come across a tiger, but they have to deal with flies almost every day

Related: Official illegally taps 120 million yuan of cash from tap water supply – Xinhua A former official in charge of water supply in Beidaihe District, a sea resort close to Beijing, was suspected of bribe taking, corruption and embezzlement after 120 million yuan of cash and 37 kilograms of gold were found in his residence. Ma Chaoqun, former general manager of a water supply company of Beidaihe in Qinhuangdao City, was also found to have 68 real estate certificates in his home, according to the latest briefing by the discipline inspection body of Hebei Province neighboring Beijing. The provincial discipline watchdog has announced in August that Ma was under investigation without giving details.

6. Yu Keping-Governing the Country in Accordance with Law, Fairness and JusticeCHINA US Focus | CHINA US Focus The fourth plenum of the 18th Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party set a general goal for “building a socialist system of rule of law with Chinese characteristics, building a socialist state of rule of law.” It is a trail-blazing accomplishment from the perspective of China’s history of political development, as well as for the CPC leadership. In the long term, the plenum will prove to be of far-reaching strategic significance for building a socialist political civilization, developing democratic politics with Chinese characteristics, and realizing the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. At present, it may more directly guarantee people’s rights and interests, achieve fairness and justice, preserve long-term order and stability, and promote national governance modernization. The third and fourth plenums were sister chapters that will prove instrumental for China’s modernization and rejuvenation. The third plenum’s decision to deepen reforms in a comprehensive manner and the fourth plenum’s promotion of governing the country in accordance with law are intrinsically connected.  //  Yu is deputy director of the Compilation and Translation Bureau of the Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party. “National governance modernization” is a concept that deserves more attention

Related: 莫纪宏:我国依宪执政不同于西方 要把权力关进制度笼子–理论-人民网 deputy head of CASS Institute of Legal Studies Mo Jihong has long piece on  p7 (Theory section) of Thursday’s People’s Daily on why China’s governing according to the Constitution is different from “Western Capitalist Constitutional Government” //  实际上,鉴于传统宪政民主存在的先天价值缺陷,西方资本主义国家近年来也在探索以“协商民主”“对话民主”等新的民主形式来修正传统意义上的多党轮流执政的宪政民主。对这一点,我们一定要清醒坚定,保持应有的道路自信、理论自信和制度自信。 总而言之,我国的依宪执政绝不是西方资本主义的宪政民主,两者存在着泾渭分明、不容混淆的根本区别。简单地将我国依宪执政类比于西方资本主义国家的宪政民主在法理上是站不住脚的,在民主政治的实践中也没有任何现实意义。

7. China Slowdown Deepens With Weakening in Production, Investment – Bloomberg Factory production rose 7.7 percent from a year earlier, the National Bureau of Statistics said in Beijing, compared with the 8 percent median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey and the second smallest rise since 2009. Retail sales gained 11.5 percent and fixed-asset investment in January through October increased 15.9 percent, the slowest pace since 2001.

Related: “北上广深”宅地收入2755亿元刷新纪录-手机和讯网 value of tier 1 city 2014 residential land sales has already set an annual record, looks to be headed for annual total of >300B RMB. The per square meter floor price of these sales averages 11,190 RMB, up 47.8% from 2013. But there is still too much existing housing inventory in these cities. What exactly are the land buyers thinking?  //  据中原地产市场研究部统计数据显示,截至11月11日,“北上广深”四个一线城市今年的住宅土地成交额已高达2755亿元,超过2013年全年的2728.9亿元,创造了新的宅地收入纪录。对此,中原地产首席分析师张大伟预计,2014年全年一线城市住宅用地成交额将首次突破3000亿元。值得一提的是,从成交楼面价来看,截至11月11日,2014年年内成交的185宗住宅土地平均楼面价每平米为11190元,与2013年的每平米7571元相比,上涨幅度高达47.8%

Related: China’s Property Market Bottoming Out? Not So Fast – China Real Time Report – WSJ New construction starts in the January-to-October period measured by area fell 5.5% to 1.48 billion square meters, compared with a decline of 9.3% recorded in the first nine months. Some banks have started to offer discounts on mortgage rates following moves by the central bank and banking regulator in late September to allow more home buyers to qualify for cheaper mortgages. All that suggests to many analysts that housing data are likely to continue to improve in November and December. But a turning point? Don’t get too excited, they say.

8. Stoltenberg halted apology to China–Newsinenglish.no Former Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg came close last year to approving a secret document aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between Norway and China, reported newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) on Tuesday. He ended up dumping the apologetic document though, because it would have overstepped the bounds of government power and undermined Norwegian policy on human rights…DN also reported that the draft document contained “an understanding” that Norway would work towards making sure that no other Chinese dissidents would receive the Peace Prize in the future. The document also contained “an understanding” that if Liu Xiaobo is released from prison, he would not be welcome in Oslo to accept his Peace Prize.

 

BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE *

China’s Leaders Said to Discuss Lowering 2015 Growth Target – Bloomberg China’s leaders have discussed lowering the 2015 economic growth target and see the need for the goal to be below this year’s level of about 7.5 percent, said a person with knowledge of the talks. // Sinocism via China Business News had this Wednesday “传言称明年GDP将下调 CPI或保持不变?一财网  CBN reports that the upcoming Central Economic Work Conference likely to set 2015 GPD target at 7%”…too bad they will still have a target

PBOC Said to Invite Smaller Banks to Apply for Cash Injections – Bloomberg Financial institutions in some provinces, including Jiangsu and Zhejiang, are submitting applications for collateralized central bank loans, according to the person. The PBOC will later decide the total size of the injections, which could run into tens of billions of yuan, the official said. The lenders will have to pledge collateral, though the monetary authority hasn’t determined yet which facility will be used to distribute the money, the person said

UBS China trip: Iron ore going sub-$60 next year | | MacroBusiness Talking with iron ore traders, the expectation is for a modest rally in the iron ore price before year end on restocking post the APEC meeting and ahead of the Chinese winter and Australia’s wet season. But it is expected to be modest, perhaps a lift of 3-5 days at the most. Iron ore price seen lower again in 2015 than in 2014 with a print under US$60/dmt cfr likely as property again seen weak in 2015.

People’s Bank of China Experimenting with Rural Land Mortgages | Huxiu peaking to the on-line news site “Economic Information” in late October, Chen Xiwen, the Director of the Office for the Central Committee’s Rural Work Leading Group, and that group’s Deputy Group Leader, said that, as part of the China’s rural land system reforms, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) is currently experimenting with a pilot program to allow the contracted management rights to rural land to be used as collateral for mortgages on rural land. These contracted management rights are based on the 2002 Rural Land Contract Law that allows China’s farmers to work agricultural land for individual profit.

财政部改革报告首次提出:应允许地方政府破产_新闻_腾讯网 21CBH says draft report overseen by Ministry of Finance reportedly mentions allowing local governments to go bankrupt…sounds like very much in draft, would be surprised if this actually happens // 十八大对全面深化经济体制改革和转变经济发展方式进行战略部署,对财政改革提出了更明确的要求。据此,财政部组织了六个省的财政厅,对六个重点领域,结合各地实际情况,进行了探究。六个省的报告,均由财政厅厅长任课题组的负责人,具体成员包括厅内主要业务处室处长、地方高校相关专家等构成。...地方债报告作为六大财税改革报告之一,随着国家关于地方债管理工作的推进,部分建议已经变成现实,如修订《预算法》;将地方债纳入预算管理、建立信息披露机制等,已经确定为未来改革方向。 但仍有部分建议,如修订《担保法》,研究制定《地方公债法》和《地方政府破产法》;成立地方政府性债务管理决策机制,建立以项目解缴作为偿债准备金主要来源的偿债准备金制度等内容,仍然有参考价值。

“十三五”规划加速编制 地方“靠拢中央”抢占红利_财经频道_一财网 明 年将进入“十二五”的最后一年,临近年末,各部门和地方“十三五”规划的制订也进入加速期。《第一财经日报》梳理发现,近半月来,工信部、民航局相关领导先后在公开场合提及“十三五”规划的相关内容。 一名官方政策研究人士12日对本报称,相关部委年中已正式启动“十三五”规划的调研,近期,有关负责人和部门开始更为具体和联动地商讨,这项工作于上月底正式启动,预计持续一年左右,“十三五”相关规划的草案将在明年第三季度成形。// work on the 13th Fifth Year Plan in preparation. local governments gearing up their lobbying

Gold Demand in China Slumps 37% Amid Drive to Root Out Graft – Bloomberg Buying by Asia’s largest economy tumbled 37 percent to 182.7 metric tons in the three months to September from the same period in 2013 as last year’s price-driven surge in demand wasn’t repeated, the World Gold Council said in a report today. //  how many other corrupt officials have 37KG of gold stashed away?

Wison Stock Collapses After Halt Lifted And Chairman Charged – Bloomberg Hua has been charged with bribing a senior manager of a customer in 2009 and committing fraud over a tender in 2004, Wison said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange yesterday, without naming the customer. The company said in March that Hua had been arrested over bribery claims. Wison’s suspension coincided with corruption probes into senior executives at its largest customer, PetroChina Co. (857), which led to the detention in September of the company’s former head and high-ranking communist party member, Zhou Yongkang..

经济参考网 – 国企改革将设政策“红线” 国家正酝酿出台防止国有资产流失政策 Economic Information on policies in the works to better protect against asset stripping during SOE reform  //  正在大刀阔斧进行的国企改革将设政策“红线”。《经济参考报》记者日前从权威渠道获悉,作为推进深化国有企业改革重要部分,针对目前正在进行的国企改革,国家层面正在酝酿相关政策防止国有资产流失,对改革中可能出现的“灰色地带”加强监管,保证国企改革顺利进行。

上海迪士尼引入本地最大商业巨头:百联集团入股10%_10%公司_澎湃新闻-The Paper Thepaper reports that Shanghai’s Bailian Group has taken a 10% stake in the Shanghai Disney venture  //  11月13日,澎湃新闻从上海最大的商业零售巨头百联集团相关人士处获悉,在上海申迪集团的一轮增资扩股中,应上海市政府和市国资委的要求,百联集团参与其中,目前已经持有申迪集团10%的股份,百联集团副总裁浦静波业已出任申迪集团董事。

 

POLITICS AND LAW *

人民日报客户端:习近平成改革“新设计师”_新闻_腾讯网 article in the People’s Daily mobile app calls Xi Jinping reforms new “chief architect”, getting lots of play online…Deng Xiaoping of course known as the original “chief architect of reform”…interesting how People’s Daily app/online articles are presented, more make it into the app than the paper, and while they may not be as authoritative yet as those in the paper because of sharing they may end up being even more widely read…must be people doing PhDs on Chinese party media in the digital age…

Hu Deping talks political reform – China Media Project The Beijing News, one of China’s leading professional newspapers, published an interview today with Hu Deping (胡德平), the son of former senior leader Hu Yaobang (胡耀邦), whose death in 1989 prompted calls for a reassessment of his reform legacy that swelled into wider demonstrations. Hu Deping, a respected economist, is former deputy minister of the United Front Work Department of the Central Committee (中央统战部). The interview in The Beijing News, which deals with the Bo Xilai scandal and the need for political reform in China to balance the power of vested interests in the way of continued reform, appears in a section on page ten called “Dialogue China” (对话中国). // the original 特殊利益集团是改革最大阻力 法治保护经济改革成果 Hu says that he was terrified by Bo Xilai’s “Singing Red and Striking Black” campaign

多名房企老板受累官员落马 地产成高危行业_新闻_腾讯网 “China Times” on the increasing number of real estate bosses going down in corruption investigations…wonder when someone big in Beijing will fall //  北京时间传媒公司执行董事蔡照明公开表示,据他了解至少有十几个房企大佬在这一波反腐中受牵连。

This animated GIF is all the proof you need that Mrs Xi Jinping is the real boss at home: Shanghaiist China’s First Lady Peng Liyuan has set WeChat abuzz with her ability to set her husband to work cleaning the windows with nary a word needed. She’s clearly had lots of practice.

China launches anti-terror intelligence gathering mechanism – Xinhua Guo Shengkun, minister of public security, urged full use of the intelligence to smash violent terrorist activities before they are carried out, according to the statement. The statement did not specify what government departments will take part in the joint mechanism. While giving a full play of traditional methods of intelligence gathering, authorities should also use big data and information technologies to enhance coordination, sharing and research of anti-terrorism intelligence, he said while attending the launching ceremony of the mechanism.

坚持严格规范公正文明执法(学习贯彻党的十八届四中全会精神)--时政–人民网 郭声琨

习式讲话再造官方话语体系善用短、实、新文风抒发情怀–时政--人民网 Thepaper on how Xi Jinping is changing “officialdom speech”

河南一镇民政所长侵吞公款52万 家中藏267本存折_新闻_腾讯网 local official in Henan found with 267 bankbooks…flies likely impossible to eradicate

从谣言看中国国情 – 评论 – FT中文网 Mao Yushi in FTChinese on the nasty rumor campaign against him

全军首批国防生维吾尔语培训在新疆大学开班,突出军事应用_澎湃防务_澎湃新闻-The Paper Xinjiang University now running Uighur language classes for PLA soldiers  //  11月1日上午,当笔者走进新疆大学1号教学楼时,楼道内传来了阵阵维吾尔语单词对话,这是新疆大学国防生和新疆军区政治部机关干部正在进行维吾尔语培训。  据了解,这是新疆大学建校以来首次为部队集中培训少数民族语言人才,也是全军国防生中首次开设的维吾尔语相关专业培训。

 

FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS *

China Woos Neighbors With Carrot-and-Stick Approach – WSJ Taken together, China’s neighbors with overlapping claims face difficult choices: recognize China’s ambition as Asia’s dominant power and embrace economic benefits that come with it or defend maritime claims and confront China, despite no guarantee of support from others in the region or the U.S.

A Tale of Two Asias–Foreign Policy good 2012 piece by Evan Feigenbaum and Robert Manning  //  There is “Economic Asia,” the Dr. Jekyll — a dynamic, integrated Asia with 53 percent of its trade now being conducted within the region itself, and a $19 trillion regional economy that has become an engine of global growth. And then there is “Security Asia,” the veritable Mr. Hyde — a dysfunctional region of mistrustful powers, prone to nationalism and irredentism, escalating their territorial disputes over tiny rocks and shoals, and arming for conflict. In today’s Asia, economics and security no longer run in parallel lines. In fact, they are almost completely in collision.

Chinese hack U.S. weather systems, satellite network – The Washington Post the agency confirmed to U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) that China was behind the attack, the congressman said. Wolf has a long-standing interest in cybersecurity and asked NOAA about the incident after an inquiry from The Washington Post. “NOAA told me it was a hack and it was China,” said Wolf, who also scolded the agency for not disclosing the attack “and deliberately misleading the American public in its replies.”

China’s Cyber-Theft Jet Fighter – WSJ Editorial The U.S. says it never lost the F-35’s most sensitive flight-control data because it was stored off-line. And there are limits to how much the Chinese might gain from thievery…Washington has stronger means to respond to Beijing’s behavior. It can help U.S. firms better protect themselves within the law, limit military-to-military exchanges that China so eagerly pursues, sanction Chinese officers and officials directing cyber espionage and deny market access to Chinese companies benefiting from stolen U.S. data. It can also expand counteroffensive capabilities to force greater costs on Beijing. But as long as arms-control talk and useless law-enforcement dominate U.S. policy, China will continue to steal U.S. secrets and close the remaining U.S. military advantage.

China’s Emergency Sat Launch Vehicle Raises Eyebrows | Defense News A road-mobile trailer truck would transport the 20-meter-long rocket to its launch location where it would be erected into a vertical position. The unanswered question by CASIC representatives is why anybody would need to make an emergency launch of a small satellite using a road-mobile trailer truck.

China’s Deceptively Weak Anti-Satellite Capabilities | The Diplomat Unlike ISR satellites, GPS and military communication satellites are completely invulnerable to China’s current missile arsenal. Even China’s most powerful missiles, its solid-fueled Inter-Continental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs) would not be able to reach an altitude of 20,000 km where GPS satellites operate, much less the 36,000 km where U.S. military communications satellites operate. In order to reach higher orbit satellites, China would have to build new and more powerful ICBMs. Even if China manages to develop such an ICBM, it certainly will not be able to easily proliferate a large number of them without imposing substantial financial strain on itself. Alternatively, China can use its liquid-fueled space launch vehicles.

U.S., China Agree on Longer Visa Validity (Updated) – U.S. & China Visa Law Blog | Chodorow Law Offices L tourist visas, M business visas, Q2 relative visit visas, and S2 private matters visit visas were previously issued for 1 entry within 3 months, 2 entries within 6 months, or multiple entries within 6 months or 1 year. Under the new agreement, they may be issued for a maximum of 10 years, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and PRC Embassy in Washington.

China issues first ten-year visas to U.S. citizens – Xinhua China issued the first-ever group of visas with ten-year validity to U.S. citizens here on Wednesday, implementing a new agreement that is expected to boost exchange between the two countries. At the visa office of Chinese Embassy in the U.S., 23-year-old researcher Edmund Downie became the first American to receive the ten-year visa with multiple entries. In what will be his fifth trip to China, he planned to travel to southern Chinese city Kunming and stay there for about a week. “I am glad that I’ve been granted the honor of being the first American to receive the ten-year visa,” Downie told Xinhua. “I am excited to be able to keep going to China for the next ten years and not have to worry about coming back to the visa office.”

Spotlight: Xi’s South Pacific trip to promote regional cooperation – Xinhua In Australia’s Brisbane, where the 9th Group of 20 (G20) Summit is to be held on Nov. 15-16, Xi will continue brainstorming with other leaders on ways to promote regional cooperation and achieve higher-level integrated development. After that, he will pay state visits to Australia, New Zealand and Fiji, where he is to meet with leaders from Pacific island countries that have established diplomatic ties with China.

蓝翔技校掌门荣兰祥被调查 新生招录锐减90% – 青岛新闻网 head of Lanxiang Vocational School, famous for foreign claims it is a nest of cyberspies, is under investigation…lots of issues, including having 6 kids and sending students to another province to fight inlaws …been brewing online for weeks, surprised gotten no pickup in foreign media

环球时报:万邦来朝的滑稽比喻是黑中国|万邦|峰会|APEC_新浪财经_新浪网 Global Times does not appreciate western media APEC coverage saying China’s foreign policy looks like a modern version of the tribute system  //  如今每逢在中国举行大型国际盛会,就会有西方媒体把它比喻成历史上朝贡者向中央王国的汇集。有些中文写手也拾人牙慧,于是“万邦来朝”这一夸张说法在北京APEC期间又出现了。必须指出,这是一顶害中国的帽子。这样说中国的外国人,恐怕没一个是出于对中国的景仰。跟着这样说的中国人,把它当怪话说的也要多于为此而陶醉的。在这个有很多人变着法编织“中国威胁论”的世界上,“万邦来朝”的描述是一个颇具杀伤力的噱头。

成都军区副司令杨金山被查 落马原因成谜_新闻_腾讯网 speculation but nothing confirmed in Chinese media about why General Yang Jinshan was detained…how close was he to Bo Xilai?

U.S. Policy Makers Could See Opportunity in China’s Rise – NYTimes.com interviews Ely Ratner–Personally I don’t think it’s right to say there’s been a downturn in relations or that we’re at a low point in a cycle. It would be a mistake to view increased frictions as the result of inattention or clumsy policy. Instead, the rise of China is at once intensifying areas of competition and opening new opportunities for cooperation. This puts a priority on sustained high-level diplomacy to manage the former and pursue the latter. It’s no accident that Obama has met with his Chinese counterpart more than any American president in history.  // how many China policy types in DC think the Obama administration has been too tough on China?

 

HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN *

13 HK people arrested for illegal car racing in Shenzhen Last Thursday and Friday, Shenzhen police arrested at least 13 Hong Kong people for overspeeding on the new highway. Video surveillance footages suggest that 12 race cars were racing on the 90-kilometer highway at 300 km per hour, well above the speed limit of 100 kph.  The race cars included a Lamborghini Gallardo Coupe and a Ferrari 450 Italia, both costing over HK$3 million (US$386,879) each, as well as a McClaren MP4-12C which costs around HK$4.15 million. The 12 cars are estimated to be worth a combined HK$30 million. Police said the suspects could face charges of reckless driving, which could result in a jail term of one to six months.

 

TECH AND MEDIA *

Sina Weibo is OUT-OF-DATE. Period. | Huxiu From how it operates content to the business model, Weibo is essentially much like Sina’s online news business. Since online news sites in China are expecting declines and shifting to other formats, it’s very likely Weibo will be just the Sina news portal in the micro-blogging era.

Chinese Drone Maker DJI Unveils More Powerful Model – WSJ Executives said the Inspire is aimed at addressing needs of those professionals that the Phantom can’t. “The Phantom’s been pushed to the absolute boundaries of what it can do,” said Eric Cheng, DJI’s director of aerial imaging. The new model carries a 4K camera—able to capture footage with about four times the picture quality of traditional high-definition cameras like the Phantoms’–that can turn 360 degrees while filming. DJI plans to sell it for around $3,000, compared with roughly $1,000 for the Phantom.  //  want

Xiaomi sold nearly 1.2M phones during China’s Singles Day–TechInAsia Today Xiaomi revealed that it saw a record high of 1.16 million phones sold during China’s Singles Day event. Along with Xiaomi’s other gadgets, such as its new MiBand fitness tracker, Xiaomi pulled in RMB 1.56 billion – that’s US$254 million – in sales volume in that 24-hour period. The figure is well up from Singles Day in 2013 when Xiaomi’s customers spent US$89 million.

 

SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY *

Chinese Comedian Walks Into a Bar. ‘So, Why the Sooty Face?’ – Bloomberg U.S.-inspired stand-up comedy and improvisational skits have gained popularity as a release valve for ordinary Chinese to vent daily frustrations such as pollution and rising costs of living. “There’s an economic and cultural shift that has laid the groundwork for a growing comedic movement,” said Lisa Colletta, an English professor at the American University of Rome and whose research includes humor and social satire. “Wider access to education, growing incomes, all things necessary for satire to flourish as it depends on an audience who can appreciate wit.”

Made in China | the Anthill by Laszlo Montgomery of the excellent China History Podcast // China History Podcast listeners might remember the episodes I did on the life of Morris “Two Gun” Cohen, a Westerner who played a two-bit role in early Republican China as the bodyguard of Sun Yat-sen. Small and insignificant as he may have been, he still got to be there up close and watch it happen. I identify with Morris in that I got to be part of the Chinese manufacturing glory days of the eighties and nineties. In the last few years, I would go to trade shows and see row after row of booths for these once proud factories. They were kings once, all of them, punching out goods selling for less than $4.99 at retail, disparaged but bought all the same by the American consumer. Now so many of them were fighting for their lives, and I wondered if they would be at that same booth next year or not.

Chinese Enrollment in U.S. Graduate Schools Dips as India Surges – The Chronicle of Higher Education So what’s behind the multiyear trend? “China has been spending big to improve its own research universities, a move that could persuade promising doctoral students to stay at home,” wrote The Chronicle’s Karin Fischer in April, citing one possible factor. ”American universities, meanwhile, have had to absorb cuts in research funding.”

网传“985”“211”废除 多所高校未接通知_国内_新京报网 新京报讯 国家已低调废除高校“985工程”、“211工程”,中国大学格局面临重新洗牌?近日,这样的传闻在网上流传“发酵”。对此,多名业内人士向新京报记者透露,尚未收到有关国家废止“985工程”和“211工程”的正式文件。其中,有高校中层干部透露该校“985”工程新款项仍在进展中。 有教育部内部官员昨日向新京报记者介绍,目前,“国家既没有说不做,也没说下一步该怎么做。

 

ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH *

‘Phantom Workers’ Signing Environmental Reports, NGO Finds – Caixin A notice issued by the Ministry of Environmental Protection in September criticized 31 assessment companies for cheating. One firm had its rating downgraded, seven had their business scope reduced and the others were closed until they fixed the problem. The companies were accused of listing a total of 62 “phantom workers” as assessors – phantom inasmuch as they never did any work on the assessments as legally required, but still signed off on the appraisals. Most of the assessors, it turns out, are employees of environmental protection departments, an arrangement that would appear to break a law prohibiting civil servants from taking outside work with companies.

Dairy staff detained after selling dozens of cows infected with tuberculosis | South China Morning Post Staff from China’s largest dairy company have been detained after being caught selling dozens of cows that had tested positive for tuberculosis to a farm, the Beijing News reported. Some 42 of 94 dairy cows sold by a subsidiary of China Modern Diary in an auction in September tested positive for bovine tuberculosis or brucellosis according to local authorities, the report said.

“普京虎”哥俩先后离境进入黑龙江,当地称野猪多吸引其迁徙_绿政公署_澎湃新闻-The Paper another of Putin’s Siberian Tigers crosses over into China…probably for the wild pigs and other plentiful game says a local official

 

BEIJING *

陈希同别墅:虎头山上建会所 耗资3千余万_新闻_腾讯网 Beijing Gehua using Chen Xitong’s old villa complex? wonder why this is coming up now  //  虎峰山庄现在属于北京歌华创意培训中心。在歌华集团已删除的网页上,人们依然可以看到虎峰山庄当年的部分设施:7号楼西侧一层多功能厅,可容纳60人举办会议或娱乐表演活动;7号楼地下一层,数码放映厅…… 在北京市财政局网站上,歌华创意名列北京市2010-2011年党政机关会议定点服务供应商之中。在歌华集团的计划中,虎峰山庄“只作为国内文化创意产业高端交流的平台”。

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