The Sinocism China Newsletter 12.15.15

"Sinocism is the Presidential Daily Brief for China hands"- Evan Osnos, New Yorker Correspondent and National Book Award Winner

Readers in the Washington DC area may be interested in a Kissinger Institute panel on which I am participating Wednesday afternoon:

Points (tipping), Lines (9-dash), Planes (military), and Spheres (of influence) – The Geometry of a Changing Relationship

If you attend please say hello.

Today’s Links:

AnchorTHE ESSENTIAL EIGHT

1. [视频]中共中央政治局召开会议 分析研究2016年经济工作 研究部署城市工作 审议《关于建立健全党和国家功勋荣誉表彰制度的意见》《中国共产党地方委员会工作条例》《关于实施全面两孩政策改革完善计划生育服务管理的决定》 中共中央总书记习近平主持会议 CCTV Evening News on 12.14 politburo meeting. Some claims the Central Economic Work Conference was held over the weekend, nothing in media, more likely not yet held

Related: 中央经济会议最迟下周一召开 重提房地产成定局-新闻频道-和讯网 和讯网消息 日前,中共中央政治局召开会议分析研究2016年经济工作。民生证券研究院执行院长管清友、民生证券宏观研究员朱振鑫发表文章提出,中央经济工作会议时间延后,但预计最迟下周一召开,房地产重回中央经济工作会议已成定局。 //  Hexun reports that Minsheng Securities researchers say Central Economic Work Conference not held yet, will be next week at the latest

2. U.S. Navy Commander Implies China Has Eroded Safety of South China Sea – The New York Times A senior American naval commander has implicitly accused China of creating “so-called military zones” close to artificial islands it has built in the South China Sea, declaring that such actions are eroding the security of one of the world’s busiest waterways. In a speech in Honolulu on Monday, the commander, Adm. Scott H. Swift of the United States Pacific Fleet, said commercial ships that had previously sailed freely through international shipping lanes were being diverted from areas deemed to be too close to the artificial islands built by the Chinese in the Spratly archipelago.

Related: Another U.S. patrol in South China Sea unlikely this year – officials | Reuters Naval commanders had hoped to carry out another “freedom of navigation” exercise in the region as early as December as part of a plan to regularly send vessels into the area and exercise what the United States views as its rights under international law, officials have said. But the Obama administration, which is weighing the risks of raising tensions with Beijing at a time when the United States is focused on the fight against Islamic State, has not approved the next such patrol, said the officials, who asked not to be named.  // the Chinese like Obama in the White House, think he is easier to roll than a Peking Duck pancake? And are Pacom and the White House on the same page? Doesn’t really look like it

Related: People’s Daily: China’s sovereignty over South China Sea islands brooks no denial – Xinhua | English.news.cn The People’s Daily on Tuesday carried the second of a series of commentaries on the Philippines’ South China Sea arbitration farce. Following is a translated version of the full text: // by Zhong Sheng 钟声:中国对南海诸岛的主权不容否定 

3. Flying close to Beijing’s new South China Sea islands – BBC News BBC conducts its own FONOP  //  this does not seem like a good idea for either side. 

Related: South China Sea: Audio reveals RAAF plane issuing warning to Chinese Navy during ‘freedom of navigation’ flight – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) A radio recording of a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) surveillance plane conducting a freedom-of-navigation flight over the South China Sea has emerged for the first time. The audio has been published by the BBC following a reporting assignment in the disputed Spratly archipelago.

Related: BBC记者飞经南海遭中国海军驱离 外交部回应_网易新闻中心 答:中方已多次就此表明严正立场。我要重申,南海航行飞越自由没有问题。我们希望其他国家,特别是一些域外国家谨言慎行,不要横生枝节,给南海平添复杂因素。

4. The U.S. Navy Wants to Show China Who’s Boss | Foreign Policy In a growing military rivalry with Beijing, U.S. commanders are looking for new anti-ship missiles and rewriting their war-fighting doctrine in the Pacific…As part of the new approach, defense officials are focused on securing access to air bases scattered across remote Pacific islands to reduce the vulnerability of large bases within China’s missile range.

Related: Work Outlines Key Steps in Third Offset Tech Development-DefenseNews The Pentagon hopes to use the next year as a testing ground for the theories behind the Third Offset strategy to lay the groundwork for the next 25 years of American dominance, Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work said Monday. Work, speaking at the Center for a New American Security, also opined that despite Russia’s aggressive actions in Europe and Syria, China “embodies a more enduring strategic challenge” in the long term for the United States.

5. The CCP’s “positive energy” obsession – China Media Project Tomorrow, China will host its second World Internet Conference (WIC), actively promoting its vision of cyber-sovereignty as it dangles the fat carrot of its domestic Internet market before global tech firms. Lu Wei and Xi Jinping will no doubt speak again about the imperative of order and freedom, of the restraints needed to save us from ourselves. “Freedom is our goal; order is our means,” Lu Wei said at his pre-WIC press conference last week. Behind the feel-good vibe, of course, this is all about control. And “positive energy” is core to the strategy of control. The following passage from a recent article in Guangming Daily, published by the Central Propaganda Department, allows us to see just how ideological this concept actually is, marking the intensity of Xi Jinping’s struggle against all dissident voices on the Internet: // World Internet Conference should really be called the “One World, Two Internets Conference”

Related: Nonprofits want boycott of Chinese Internet summit | TheHill Reporters Without Borders (RSF), a free press advocate, and GreatFire, a digital rights group that monitors Chinese online censorship, are both supporting the boycott push. They said Lu’s comments show Beijing officials are unwilling to discuss Internet freedom at the upcoming summit, scheduled for Dec. 16 to 18. “Coming ahead of the World Internet Conference, the sole aim of this manipulation attempt is to preempt any discussion of media freedom and freedom of information,” said Benjamin Ismaïl, the head of RSF’s Asia-Pacific desk.  // US executives attending this conference are affirmatively endorsing China’s Internet censorship & repression, at a time when internally the CCP sees itself in an ideological war with the West with the Internet as the primary battleground. And the kowtowing will do little to nothing for their shareholders, and may even damage their interests.

Related: [视频]【直通乌镇】中国向网络强国迈进新闻频道央视网(cctv.com) Part of the massive propaganda push for the Wuzhen Internet conference, Monday CCTV Evening News report on the progress of China towards becoming an “Internet superpower”, begins with praise for Ctrip raising billions from foreign investors, later shows room of ZTE routers, interviews ZTE exec about core routers now provided by domestic firms, says can be proud that the “brain” of China’s Internet is now in the hands of Chinese…a lesson for all the US executives still dreaming of China Internet riches…

Related: World better off with China’s embrace of Internet – Xinhua ust as freedom is not totally free, the Internet is a tool that can either do good or bad. While China may seem to be too prudent in preventing the Internet’s bad effect, its attitude to let it do good is obvious. With President Xi Jinping expected to attend this year’s WIC, which makes the industry conference somewhat special. It shows the determination of the government to support the society in benefiting from Internet. As Internet is essentially pluralistic and open, China is actually on its way to a more open society. Though the government’s “Internet Plus” strategy, which encourages applying Internet to any other industry, seems ambitious, the truth is that China has to rely more on Internet.

Related: 第二届世界互联网大会_中央网信办 CAC site for the World Internet. Will there be another attempt to have participants sign a pledge?

Related: Not shared by all? China blocks New York Times from World Internet Conference | Hong Kong Free Press A New York Times technology reporter has said that the American newspaper has been excluded from this year’s China’s World Internet Conference, set to open on Wednesday in Wuzhen, Zhejiang. “China’s World Internet Conference calls for an ‘interconnected world shared+governed by all.’ Yet NYTimes excluded for 2nd straight year,” reporter Paul Mozur said on Twitter.

Related: 开启中国互联网文化的“黄金时代”–文化–人民网 建设健康网络空间,推出更多网络文化精品,网民亦责无旁贷,应积极参与到网络文艺的监督工作中,选择优秀向上的文艺作品去阅读、观看、点赞、转发,形成自觉传递真善美,抵制低俗网络文艺作品的良好社会风气,共同推动网络文化走向“黄金时代”。

Related: 鲁炜:中国正在从网络大国向网络强国迈进–时政–人民网 12月15日,中宣部副部长、中央网信办主任、国家网信办主任鲁炜在第二届世界互联网大会“互联网之光”博览会开幕式上致辞。 第二届世界互联网大会“互联网之光”博览会开幕式12月15日上午在浙江乌镇举行。中宣部副部长、中央网信办主任、国家网信办主任鲁炜在开幕式上发表了题为“中国正在从网络大国向网络强国迈进”的致辞,全文如下:

Related: “乌镇时间”开启“美美与共”的网络新时代–IT–人民网 一个和平、安全、稳定、繁荣的网络空间,对一个国家乃至整个世界的和平发展都具有非常重要意义。全球共享,自然必须要全球共治,有什么样的问题和挑战都需要大家来共同面对、共同解决。这不仅需要各国集思广益、凝聚共识,更需要共同推动、建设一个“网络空间命运共同体”,让全世界数十亿网民共同分享互联网带来便利和快乐,让那些还未上网的人尽早实现网络梦。 “一镇一盛会,一网一世界”。“乌镇时间”再次开启,人们期待着中国平台服务世界,中国智慧启迪世界,在合作共赢中开启世界互联网“美美与共”的大同时代。

Related: 世界互联网大会会刊丨构建网络空间命运共同体国内新京报网 The Beijing News has put together a publication for the World Internet Conference, several articles by foreign participants

Related: 习近平乌镇会见梅德韦杰夫,强调中俄关系三个“不会变”澎湃国际澎湃新闻-The Paper Xi meets with Medvedev in Wuzhen

Related: Another Kind of Climate Change: China Warms to Superpower Role – WSJ The broader picture, however, shows a China that’s often more ready to upset the status quo than to strengthen it. At times, it’s bent on wholesale revisionism. This week, we’ll see a prime example of that as executives from the world’s leading technology companies stream into China for a World Internet Conference under the theme “An Interconnected World Shared and Governed by All.” In fact, the gathering will be a platform for China to promote its concept of Internet management that would have precisely the opposite effect—to fragment the digital world.

6. China, U.S. relationship key in climate agreement – LA Times What explains China’s shift? It’s not necessarily pangs of guilt nor a newfound sense of global munificence. Instead, after years of downplaying its environmental crisis, Chinese leaders appear to have recognized that cleaning up China’s toxic skies and pushing the country toward renewable energy are crucial to maintaining the Communist Party’s grip on power amid rising public discontent.  // The US gives China’s climate cooperation too much leverage in the overall relationship

Related: Where Wai (outer) meets Nei (inner): How China’s international and domestic policy positions reinforce each other | ChinaFAQs China in particular stands out for its evolution over this period as it has taken on increasingly stringent international commitments in tandem with massive climate and energy programs at home. Looking at its domestic constituencies—including extremely powerful fossil fuel and local government interests that are net losers under a carbon control program without compensation—this transition over the span of less than a decade is striking.

Related: Readout of the President’s Call with President Xi Jinping of China | whitehouse.gov President Obama spoke by phone last night with President Xi Jinping of China to express appreciation for the important role China played in securing an historic climate agreement in Paris on December 12.  // did he mention Pu Zhiqiang?

Related: Paris Climate Agreement Explained: Next Steps for China | Barbara Finamore’s Blog | Switchboard, from NRDC Here are some of the major ones:

7. Look who’s talking — and who’s not. Western nations choose words carefully on China human rights. – The Washington Post While diplomats and journalists, including The Post’s Emily Rauhala, were cursed and shoved outside Pu’s trial, WorldViews sat back in the warmth and took a look at the websites of some of the major Western nations. Of the countries we surveyed, only three issued statements last Thursday containing criticism of China’s human rights record. They were the United States, Canada and Germany.  //  no wonder China knows it faces no international repercussions for its human rights violations, the number of countries willing to even spout empty words has dwindled to near zero

Related: China Is Leading Jailer of Journalists, Group Says – The New York Times China was the biggest jailer of journalists in 2015 for the second consecutive year, and the number imprisoned in Egypt and Turkey also rose sharply compared with 2014, a free-press advocacy group that monitors journalist incarcerations said in an annual report released on Tuesday. “A handful of countries continue to use systematic imprisonment to silence criticism,” said the group, the Committee to Protect Journalists, which is based in New York

Related: Associated Press-China’s Plainclothes Officers A Force Against Dissent The use of such agents dovetails with the party’s desire to pay lip service to the rule by law while quashing all opposition, controlling the public discourse and sentencing critics to lengthy prison terms for hazily defined national security crimes. The plainclothes agents did not specifically identify themselves as such, but foreign journalists in Beijing have interacted with them for two decades. They typically appear in civilian clothes in a wide variety of circumstances where foreign media might interact with government critics and authorities want to maintain control without uniformed officers intervening directly.

8. Brittle Might? Testing China’s Success | CSIS This report is based on the views expressed during, and short papers contributed by speakers at, a conference organised by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service as part of its academic outreach program. Offered as a means to support ongoing discussion, the report does not constitute an analytical document, nor does it represent any formal position of the organisations involved. The conference was conducted under the Chatham House rule; therefore no attributions are made and the identity of speakers and participants is not disclosed. // was scheduled to attend but got sick, sorry I missed it

AnchorBUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE

Northern Exposure: China Names and Shames Provinces for Fudging GDP – – WSJ China’s official numbers have long been viewed skeptically in and outside of China. As party secretary of northeastern Liaoning province in 2007, China’s current premier, Li Keqiang, was quoted in a leaked diplomatic cable telling U.S. officials that Chinese provincial statistics were “manmade” and therefore unreliable. So the disclosures in recent days by the official Xinhua News Agency and People’s Daily that gross domestic product figures in China’s northeastern rust-bowl region were doctored was less surprising. What was noteworthy was that official media made the episode so public, suggesting official tolerance for official fudging is on the wane.

Author Disavows Letter Backing Angry Investors, Citing Physical Attacks-Caixin The hotel episode is being widely discussed online in China, in part because Song is a controversial figure for his best-selling Currency Wars series. The books claim that China is at war with a shadowy coalition of elite bankers, who have manipulated Western countries’ central banks and rigged the global financial system to their benefit. The books are largely written off by Chinese economists as espousing little more than poorly researched conspiracy theories, but they sell well anyway. Some local governments have recommended their officials read the books.

China ready to moderate sharp offshore yuan falls: sources | Reuters China’s central bank is on guard against a sudden attack on the yuan in offshore markets, and is ready to intervene if the gap between offshore and onshore exchange rates becomes destabilizing, sources involved in policy discussions say.

China’s sovereign wealth fund to open first U.S. office – sources | Reuters With its major Canadian investments in the red as energy and mining companies reel from tumbling oil and metal prices, CIC is looking to cut its exposure, and could move to New York as early as March 1, one source said.

Why can’t China make a good ballpoint pen? | Marketplace.org “Think about it. How much money have the foreigners made from us because they have better technology?” asked Dong. “You don’t have this technology and they’re taking your profits! You know what I’m going to do? I’ll have my best people make you a machine like the Swiss have! I’ll make it in a year and sell it to you for half the price!” The studio audience applauded loudly. Her promise seemed ludicrous – It took years of R&D for the Swiss to make a machine like this, and now she, an air conditioner manufacturer, promised to do the same in months. The CEO beside her onstage who runs a machine tool company pointed this out, but the CCTV host quickly shot him down, calling him jealous.

China’s Metals-Building Merger Echoes Old School Conglomerates – Bloomberg Business The merger will create a conglomerate similar to ThyssenKrupp AG and other groups that emerged in past decades in rival manufacturing powerhouses, said Uwe Parpart, chief strategist at brokerage Reorient Group Ltd. in Hong Kong. “In Germany in the 1970s and 1980s, you had these kinds of outfits that were making steel, they had engineering and logistics, they were integrated companies with an entire industrial chain,” Parpart said by phone. “When you look at the efficiencies that you gain if you have a company that designs a piece of infrastructure which at the same time creates demand for its steel, or its cement or its metals production, that’s very worthwhile. I think that’s the logic.”

Corruption behind accidents deserve harsher penalties: authority – Xinhua The judicial interpretation, released Tuesday by the Supreme People’s Court (SPC) and the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, specified criteria for conviction and scenarios where harsher or lighter punishments should apply. If state employees illegally invest in or hold stocks in enterprises which endanger production safety, or if corruption or bribe-taking are found directly linked with safety accidents, they should be given harsh penalties, it said.h They may also be subject to punishment for embezzlement or taking bribes, according to specific convictions..Moreover, the judicial interpretation “hidden stock holders,” often state employees or enterprise managers who hold stock in other people’s names, will also be held accountable.

需求透支致水泥企业近半亏损 _ 经济参考网 _ 新华社《经济参考报》官方网站 Xinhua’s Economic Information says about 50% of cement manufacturers are losing money

China Kicks ITA Expansion Negotiations to Nairobi After achieving significant progress this week to put the finishing touches on the three-year effort to expand the Information Technology Agreement (ITA), officials in Geneva were hoping the last big piece of the puzzle would fall into place today to get the negotiations completed before the WTO Ministerial Conference convenes in Nairobi next week. That last piece would have been China submitting to the WTO a revised national tariff schedule of the products covered by the agreement and lifting its reservations on the schedules of a number of other parties to the negotiation. That was not to be. China did not budge an inch.

央行:四大行11月新增人民币贷款1210亿_证券时报网 据央行网站15日消息,四大行11月新增人民币贷款1210亿元,11月底人民币贷款总额35.8万亿元。

武钢被曝将裁员上万:让人提前退休、居家休息|裁员|离职_凤凰资讯 report that Wuhan Iron & Steel to lay off 10,000 workers

AnchorPOLITICS AND LAW

Communist Party local committee regulation approved – Xinhua The regulation was passed during a meeting presided over by CPC Central Committee General Secretary Xi Jinping. Local CPC committees are the foundation of the CPC’s governance, according to the statement issued after the meeting. CPC committees at the provincial, municipal and county levels are the centers of leadership of their respective regions. They are crucial to the sound implementation of decisions and objectives outlined by the central leadership, the statement added.

人民日报评论员:解决突出问题才有说服力–观点–人民网 3rd in series of People’s Daily commentaries on the “three stricts three earnests”, that campaign heating up

中纪委网站刊文:入党就意味着放弃一部分自由|纪严于法_新浪新闻 ●修订党纪处分条例,必须突出政党特征、党纪特色,把纪律和规矩挺在法律的前面,永葆党的先进性和纯洁性。 ●国有国法,家有家规。古今中外,任何一个组织的内部章程和规则都比国家法律要严格。 ●坚持纪严于法、纪在法前,实现纪法分开,与全面从严治党、把纪律挺在前面的要求完全吻合,是思想认识的一次飞跃,是管党治党的理念创新。 ●党员不能把自己混同于一般群众,群众守法就行,党员光守法不行,还得守纪,对党员领导干部这个“关键少数”来说更是如此。 ●能不能把纪律挺在前面,反映的是党性强不强、有没有责任担当。只要有坚定的党性立场,办法就比困难多。 //  CCDI publishes article saying when you join the Party you give up some freedoms, reiterates that Party discipline is stricter than the law

中纪委如何回应“反腐是权斗”等6大质疑?国内新京报网 近日,中纪委文章提到,老外曾质疑八项规定,现在也想有个中纪委。“政事儿”(微信ID:gcxxjgzh)注意到,十八大以来,中纪委“高歌猛进”的同时,也面对着诸如“反腐是不是权力斗争”等质疑。

Gu Kailai, Wife of Fallen Chinese Official, Is Given Life Sentence – The New York Times A Beijing court has commuted to life in prison the suspended death sentence given to Gu Kailai, the wife of one of China’s most prominent politicians, for the murder of a British business associate, according to the Chinese state-run news media.  //  as expected, did same for Liu Zhijun

China’s plan to ‘liberate’ a cradle of Tibetan culture – The Washington Post the Chinese authorities’ new rules, reminiscent of restrictions in the Tibet Autonomous Region to the west, treat these everyday acts of faith as potential crimes against the state: You shall not pray for the Dalai Lama at a religious festival, the notice says. Nor shall you carry his picture in public.

城管改革破题财新周刊频道财新网 Caixin on reforming the “cheng’guan”

AnchorFOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS

Obama expected to move on Taiwan arms sales before year-end | Reuters “We’re expecting an announcement as early as this week,” a Republican congressional aide said. Another congressional aide said the notification from the administration was expected “any time now.” The sale would mark the first time in four years that the United States has shipped arms to Taiwan, the longest gap in such arm sales in nearly four decades.

China urges U.S. to stop arms sale to Taiwan – Xinhua “The United States should be fully aware that the arms sale to Taiwan is highly sensitive and dangerous. The U.S. should abide by its commitment and stop arms sale to Taiwan, and do something more conducive for China-U.S. relations and the peaceful development of the cross-Strait relations,” said Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei.

人事动作戛然而止?2015冬整军合流_中国-多维新闻网 11月前后延续前两次人事调整(2014年冬和2015年夏近百大军区级将领)的小范围补充在年末不但未深化,反而戛然而止。这是原地待命的信号?循此逻辑,军方人事动作可能即将在年末例行将领大调整的同时,同步推行新编制。如今海外媒体(博闻社)相继透露陆军总部司令员的人选,甚至包括军委新架构,虽然对其真实性有所怀疑,必不见得一蹴而就,但是据官方报道裁军令已下,至少说明军改已实质推动,相信人事调整即便先易而后难推行。

Property Struggles Shutter Tim’s Texas Bar-B-Q Shortly After The Den’s Demise | the Beijinger He went on to describe how government laws prohibit commercial businesses from operating on People’s Liberation Army (PLA/中国人民解放军) real estate. Apparently regulations of this kind have long been ignored, but are now being enforced on the properties where The Den and Tim’s are housed.

China Spy Fears Over Aussie Port Deal Are Absurd, Defense Says – Bloomberg Business Australia’s defense department dismissed concerns that the sale of a port in the northern city of Darwin to a Chinese company could undermine national security after the U.S. queried the deal. Defense Secretary Dennis Richardson rejected concerns the People’s Liberation Army could use the purchase by the privately-held Landbridge Group to secure access to port facilities as “alarmist nonsense.”

SCO prime ministers start talks in central China – Xinhua Prime Ministers of Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) member states started talks on Tuesday in Zhengzhou, capital of central China’s Henan Province. Welcoming foreign leaders to the meeting, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said that since it was established in 2001, the SCO had become an important force promoting regional stability, prosperity and development.

Iraq’s New Chinese Armed Drone Draws First Blood | Popular Science In the ongoing Battle for Ramadi, an Iraqi Security Force CH-4 drone attacked an Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) artillery position on December 6, 2015. This is the first documented use of a Chinese made armed drone in Iraq.  //  wonder when will be used in Xinjiang

China urges U.S. cooperation to battle terrorism financing | Reuters During two days of talks in New York last week, China and the United States discussed combating terrorist financing, national risk assessments for money laundering and a Sino-U.S. anti-money laundering pact, the People’s Bank of China said in a statement on its website.

Xi expects better China-Russia relations in 2016 – Xinhua Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday said that he hoped China-Russia ties would make further progress in the coming year to bring more benefit to the two peoples. Xi made the remarks during a meeting with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in Wuzhen in east China’s Zhejiang Province.

军报年终特稿:《训战一体,从难从严瞄准新靶心》 – 中国军网 训战一体,从难从严瞄准新靶心 ——党的十八大以来全军部队贯彻落实习主席重要指示大抓实战化训练综述之二

Presidential Donor Lookup Results | OpenSecrets McCain, John LI, ERIC X MR BERKELEY,CA 94709 BERKELEY,CA 94709 CHENGWEI VENTURES 12/12/08$2,300: Paul, RonLI, ERIC XUN MR BERKELEY,CA 94709CHENGWEI VENTURES $1,500 // at least in 2008 venture capitalist and CCP booster Eric X Li was a US citizen. This 2008 student list from the Fudan University International Student Office also lists Li as a US citizen. Li would not be the first US citizen to so enthusiastically propagandize for the CCP, but he may be the richest and savviest

AnchorHONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN

ROC Minister of the Interior Chen Wei-zen presides over a ceremony marking the opening of a wharf and lighthouse on Taiping Island – Ministry of the Interior. Republic of China(Taiwan) ROC Minister of the Interior Chen Wei-zen presides over a ceremony marking the opening of a wharf and lighthouse on Taiping Island, demonstrating the ROC’s commitment to making Taiping Island a peaceful and low-carbon island, as well as an ecological reserve, in accordance with the spirit of the South China Sea Peace Initiative

AnchorTECH AND MEDIA

China Mobile expects to top 500m 4G users by end of 2016 China Mobile VP Li Huidi says the company expects to have broken 500 million users by the end of that year. China Mobile currently has about 1 million 4G base stations, according to Li, so in 2016 it plans a 30 percent increase in coverage

Rules of the Road, Part 1: Liquidation Preference in China & Asia – SOSV Singapore and Hong Kong can at times be worse than mainland China, since investors in these markets have little early stage investment experience. And because they are coming from a private equity background where capital preservation is almost as important as capital appreciation, they include many investor “protections” in their deal documents.

AnchorSOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY

Hairdressing, Shanghai style – BBC News Photographer Jonathan Browning has been based in China since 2007, and his latest work shows staff at High Street favourite Wenfeng being trained in the art of hairdressing and beauty treatments.

AnchorENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH

Bending the Rules? A Top Award for China’s ‘Second Lady’ Raises Questions –  WSJ A top award for China’s ‘Second Lady’ raises questions

State Council Aims to Cut Power Prices for Big Manufacturers-Caixin A set of directives issued by the State Council in late November aims to overhaul the country’s electricity market to reduce state control and promote competitive energy prices. Pilot schemes aimed at streamlining power transmission costs will be rolled out nationwide, the six documents issued on November 20 said, and the two state-owned grid operators, the State Grid Corp. and China Southern Power Grid Co., have been told to operate their networks for a fee set by the government.

油价这次不降了!发改委:有利于改善空气质量_凤凰资讯 NDRC not cutting oil prices this time, says to help with air pollution fight

张进做客《面对面》:抑郁症之战视频频道财新网 Caixin editor Zhang Jin talks about his battle with depression on CCTV’s “Face to Face” show. China has a depression epidemic, limited support for sufferers, still much stigma

AnchorBEIJING

Capital’s Plan for Hukou Revamp ‘Will Raise Cost of Living’ A proposed points system that the capital’s government is considering using when giving permanent resident status to migrants will push up living costs by attracting high earners while driving away less-skilled workers, an expert has said. Beijing’s government released a draft plan on December 10 that would introduce a scoring system similar to the merit-based points scheme for people who move to the United States so that migrants can get household registration documents known as hukou if they meet certain criteria.  //  the goal is to keep it very difficult for non-Beijingers to get a Beijing Hukou

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