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May072011

7th of May 2011

 

The Lion Awakes 

Daily News, Culture & Current Affairs about China

 

 

 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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People's Daily

 

Rise of China top news of the century

Media coverage related to the rise of China tops the biggest world news story list of the 21st century, according to a study released on Thursday.

The survey by the Global Language Monitor said the biggest news story around the world since January 2000 remains the rise of China as an economic and political power.

The China story has about 300 million citations to date, followed by the election of Obama to the US presidency with 123 million.

See Kaixin's - ECONOMIC CHINA

 

ASEAN+3 countries deepen financial cooperation

Wei Benhua, former deputy head of China's currency regulator, was appointed to serve a three-year term as the first director of the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) at a meeting of deputy finance ministers from the 10 ASEAN member countries, China, Japan and South Korea (ASEAN+3) in Vietnam's capital city of Hanoi on May 3. He said in an interview after the appointment that the establishment of the AMRO marks significant progress in the deepening of financial cooperation among the ASEAN+3 countries.

Historical evolution ...

 

China says not seeking substantial trade surplus with U.S.

China reaffirmed on Friday that it is not looking at pursuing a substantial trade surplus with the United States.

"China's policy is clear-cut: we are not seeking a large trade surplus," Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said during a press briefing on Friday, days ahead of the China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue, which will take place in Washington next week.

Zhu said that the Chinese market is open to the United States, with U.S. shares increasingly soaring. "We have a mutually beneficial, win-win economic relationship," Zhu said.

 

China, U.S. to launch strategic security dialogue

China and the United States will launch their first strategic security dialogue in Washington this month, Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai said in Beijing on Friday.

The strategic security dialogue is scheduled to be kicked off during the third China-U.S. Strategic and Economic Dialogue, which will also be held in Washington, said Cui.

 

Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway to launch 10-day trial run

According to railway department, the whole line of the Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway, which started construction three years ago, is going to perform trials for 10 days from June 9 to June 19 of this year, and 24 pair of trains might be initiated by the time, Oriental Morning Post reported on May 6.

 

China unveils plan for Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Zone

The central government recently unveiled the regional planning for the Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Zone. This is an important strategic deployment for promoting China's scientific development and accelerating the transformation of the economic development mode as well as a major step to further implement western development and promote the balanced development between regions, according to the website of the National Development and Reform Commission.

The Chengdu-Chongqing Economic Zone is located in the upper reaches of the Yangtze River and lies in the Sichuan Basin. It covers an area of 206,000 square kilometers and is an important population, urban and industrial agglomeration area in China.

 

China signs currency swap deal with Mongolia

The People's Bank of China (PBOC), the country's central bank, said Friday that it has signed a 5-billion-yuan (about 769 million U.S. dollars) currency swap agreement with the Central Bank of the People's Republic of Mongolia.

The swap is aimed at promoting bilateral trade and offering short-term liquidity to the two countries' financial systems, it said.

 

One in three Beijingers a migrant worker

The capital's population rose to 19.6 million in 2010, and a huge influx of migrants contributed to the growth, the city's statistics bureau said on Thursday.

Migrants who have come from other provinces to the city are the main contributors to Beijing's population growth. But the municipal government is seemingly reluctant to encourage a further influx of migrants.

"After 10 years of high-speed growth, Beijing's economy should slow down and improve. In the meantime, the population should be controlled accordingly," said Gu Yanzhou, deputy director of the Beijing municipal bureau of statistics.

"We'll surely strengthen the local population management but the exact policies and measures remain to be decided," Gu added.

 

Canton Fair ends with trade volume growth

The 109th Canton Fair, held in south China's Guangdong Province and a barometer of China's trade, closed Thursday with a growth in trade volume despite some setbacks.

Contrary to predictions that the number of businessmen to the fair could drop by 5 percent, a record high of 207,000 foreign traders came and struck deals worth more than 36.86 billion U.S. dollars, up 5.8 percent year on year, said Liu Jianjun, the fair's spokesman.

"The growth was better than expected. It indicates a good start for China's trade, which is likely to perform well throughout the year," Liu said.

 

Highlights of China's sixth national census results

China has put its excessive population growth under effective control, and has greatly improved the population quality, entering a stage of low birth and death rates, according to the results of the country's sixth national census published on April 28.

Excessive population growth under control

Ma Jiantang, director of the National Bureau of Statistics, said that according to the census data, China's population increased by 73.9 million or nearly 6 percent from 2000 to 2010, representing an average growth rate of nearly 0.6 percent per year. However, its population increased by 130 million or nearly 11 percent from 1990 to 2000, representing an average growth rate of more than 1 percent per year.

The net population growth over the 2000-2010 decade stood at 56 million people less that of the previous decade.

This shows that China's family planning policy has been effectively implemented, and the excessive population growth has been brought under control. The slower growth rate has reduced the population pressure on the environment, and laid a solid foundation for the rapid yet steady economic and social development.


Steady decline in illiteracy rate

China's urbanization increasing

Eastern China's population proportion increase reflects China's growing economic vitality

 

China calls for top-notched peace research institutes

By Li Hongmei

If war and peace is a duel eternal theme throughout the human history, the recent years has witnessed war-dominant international scenario. Hence, it is highly advisable for China to build up the globally notable "peace research institutes" or "peace and development research institutes," which will act as the most authoritative think tank assisting the government in its domestic and foreign policies decision by offering information, documents and wisdom.

As a matter of fact, U.S. and European countries have moved far ahead of China in this regard. The independent "peace institutes" have actually turned out to be the indispensable think tank for Heads of States when they hammer out foreign policies. Just to name a few.

  

Controlling inflation is top priority

By Li Hong

The State Council's hopes of staving off elevating prices and controlling annual inflation within 4 percent at the end of this year seem increasingly elusive, as the policy-makers' reluctance to step up tightening in the first five months would cause bigger credit and asset bubbles in the coming months.

 

Caution on changing family policy

By Li Hong


The mounting calls by some scholars and demographers to relax China's iconic family planning policy is good-willed, fearing a depletion of labor pool would shortcut the economic boom and intensify the country's aging. But, any revision of a highly successful basic state policy warrants caution.

It is particularly intriguing that more and more foreign demographers join some Chinese research fellows in insisting Beijing abandon the one-child policy in all Chinese cities, and allow every couple to have two children. These experts contend China's low birthrate, once an economic advantage, is now destined to clip the country's rise.

We cannot fathom how many newborns will arrive if the policy sluice is lifted. However, considering China now has an urban population of 630 million, twice the total population of the United States, we are really unsure of our cities' ability to accommodate an ever larger populace.

The one-child policy, planned and promulgated in late 1970s, is an integral part of Mr. Deng Xiaoping's reform package.

 

 

 

 

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Sun Yat-sen portrait displayed in Beijing

A huge Sun Yat-sen portrait is displayed on Tian'anmen Square ahead of the three-day May Day holiday in Beijing.

See Kaixin's - Chinese Republic under Dr Sun Yat-Sen - Video Documentary

Kaixin OpEd – The Portrait of Dr Sun Yat-Sen is significant because it heralds a change in attitude within the Communist Party.

Dr Sun Yat-Sen is known as the founder of Modern China. It was his baton that Mao picked up and successfully forged the New China in 1949.

The Parade which celebrated the 60th Anniversary of the founding of Modern China (1959 – 2009) had a Portrait of Sun Yat-Sen at the head. Mao was relegated to marching one step behind.

Things like this do not happen for no reason in China.

However, Kaixin is still scratching its head at the removal of the statue of Confucius from Tiananmen Square last week. There has not been a peep out of the Chinese media since it was reported in the Global Times.

 

China says stronger yuan does not hurt forex reserves

BEIJING - A rising yuan will not cause heavy losses to China's $3 trillion foreign exchange reserves, the nation's forex regulator said on Friday, refuting some media reports that a stronger yuan against the US dollar had led to heavy losses of the huge forex reserves.

 

ODI set to overtake FDI 'within three years'

BEIJING - With an annual growth rate of "20 to 30 percent", outbound direct investment (ODI) will overtake foreign direct investment (FDI) "within three years", a senior Ministry of Commerce official said.

The United States, the European Union and Latin America are set to see "a rapid" increase in ODI from China, Zheng Chao, commercial counselor at the Department of Outward Investment and Economic Cooperation at the ministry, told China Daily.

 

Sino-US militaries to join economic talks

Strategic and Economic Dialogue to highlight reform of financial system

WASHINGTON / BEIJING - Military representatives will be welcome at the table during the annual China-US Strategic and Economic Dialogue next week in Washington, said US diplomat Kurt Campbell.

It will be the first time the military has joined the high-level economic talks, Campbell said.

 

More govt disclosure to combat corruption

BEIJING - China has moved to combat squandering taxpayers' money on government officials' overseas trips, vehicle purchases and receptions, by disclosing how much has been spent in the past on such expenditures.

 

Shipping in crisis as water levels plunge

WUHAN - Authorities are rushing to clear snarled shipping traffic and prevent accidents along the drought-stricken Yangtze River, a key route to fast-growing markets in inland China.

Several sections of the drought-stricken Yangtze River, China's longest waterway, may pose dangers for shipping traffic, the Changjiang (Yangtze River) Maritime Safety Administration said on Friday.

Scores of cargo ships are grounded in Dongtiaoxi River in Huzhou city, East China's Zhejiang province, on Wednesday. Low water levels due to the drought caused the transport logjam.

See Kaixin's - GREEN CHINA

 

 

Cashing in on cashmere

China is the world's largest producer of cashmere, churning out 75 to 80 percent of the global supply - worth an estimated 5 to 6 billion yuan ($770 million to $920 million) each year.

This "soft gold" or "diamond fiber", as highly prized cashmere is known in the industry, has traditionally been exported to affluent overseas markets.

But the country's growing taste for luxury products is changing that.

High-altitude North and West China are ideal for producing the cloudlike wool. Their cold, dry winters cause the long-haired goats scattered across the region to grow rich coats to keep warm.

Business talks at the 2010 International Trade Fair for Cashmere in Beijing. China's cashmere clothing and accessories are finding a growing market at home.

 

FEATURE - Wenzhou manufacturers seek new ways to produce wealth

Higher returns from property, stocks and commodities lure factory owners, reports Yu Ran in Shanghai.

Wenzhou seems to be undergoing a midlife crisis.

A secondary city in East China's Zhejiang province, it built a vibrant manufacturing base for a wide range of consumer goods - from shoes to ties, cigarette lighters to spectacles - over the past three decades, helping make China the world's workshop.

But labor is not as cheap as it was and inflation is squeezing profit margins. Many factory owners are chasing higher financial returns by investing their capital in property, stocks and commodities.

The birthplace of China's private economy, a producer of tangible goods, has become a hotbed of enterprising business people whose collective investments have moved the price of land and commodities in cities and towns around the country. And now some of those people are moving their operations out of the city.

China's 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015) looks to transform its labor-intensive manufacturing economy into one based on technology and innovation.

What does that mean for Wenzhou? What does that mean for China?

Workers at Dongyi Shoes Co Ltd were busy with their work in this 2010 photo. Like other shoe manufacturers in Wenzhou, Zhejiang province, Dongyi has used some of its earnings for property investment and the equity market.

See Kaixin's - ECONOMIC CHINA

 

 

Xi'an to welcome crowd for huge plant exposition

XI'AN - More than 12 million tourists are expected to go this year to the International Horticultural Exposition, which began in Xi'an, capital of Northwest China's Shaanxi province, on Thursday.

Dancers perform during the opening ceremony of the International Horticultural Exposition in Xi'an, capital of Northwest China's Shaanxi province, on Thursday, April 28, 2011

 

Dancers from Burundi perform at the opening ceremony of the International Horticultural Exposition in Xi'an

 

 

Witness of Tibet Photography Contest and Exhibit

2011 marks the 60th anniversary of the peaceful liberation of Tibet, and the magazine China's Tibet and Federation of Literary and Art Circles of Tibet Autonomous Region are jointly holding a "Witness of Tibet, 1950-2010" photography contest. In addition to prizes, all winning works will be exhibited in Beijing and Lhasa in May 2011.

See Kaixin's - CHINA & TIBET & Jambhala (Photographer)

 

 

 

 

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XinHua News

 

 

China says stronger yuan does not hurt forex reserves

BEIJING, May 6 (Xinhua) -- A rising yuan will not cause heavy losses to China's 3-trillion-U.S. dollar foreign exchange reserves, the nation's forex regulator said on Friday, refuting some media reports that a stronger yuan against the U.S. dollar had led to heavy losses of the huge forex reserves.

Investment returns of China's forex reserves have maintained steady for years, the State Administration of Foreign Exchange (SAFE) said in a statement on its website, in response to some experts' view that a stronger yuan against the U.S. dollar had caused a loss of 271.1 billion U.S. dollars since 2003.

"The ratio of our returns is much higher than the inflation rates in the United States, European Union and Japan where the reserves are invested, which boosted the real purchasing power of the reserves," SAFE said.


China, Russia to promote strategic partnership over next decade

MOSCOW, May 6 (Xinhua) -- China and Russia agreed Friday to promote the steady growth of their bilateral strategic partnership over the next decade.

 

Senior CPC official urges steady development of cross-Strait ties

CHENGDU, May 6 (Xinhua) -- China's top political advisor, Jia Qinglin, on Friday urged for efforts from both the mainland and Taiwan to further the continuous and steady development of the cross-Strait relations.

See Kaixin's - CHINA & TAIWAN

 

China launches large grassland protection subsidy program

BEIJING, May 6 (Xinhua) -- The Chinese government has announced to implement a subsidy and reward program for the country's herdsmen over the coming years in order to reverse and prevent damage that has been done to China's grasslands because of climate change and overgrazing

 

Two Chinese sites among 40 to be considered into World Heritage List in June

PARIS, May 5 (Xinhua) -- UNESCO's World Heritage Committee plans to consider in June the inscription of 40 more natural and cultural properties into the World Heritage List, including two from China, the Paris-based UN Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization announced on Thursday.

Two sites in China will be weighed respectively to enter the list of natural property and cultural property -- Wudalianchi National Park in Heilongjiang province, north China and West Lake Cultural Landscape of Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province in eastern China.

 

"Green traffic" initiative cuts carbon emissions by 830,000 tonnes during Shanghai Expo

SHANGHAI, May 5 (Xinhua) - A report released Thursday detailed how the green traffic initiative promoted during the Shanghai Expo helped cut carbon emissions by 830,000 tonnes.

The cut equals the reduction of the consumption of 350 million liters of gasoline, said the report titled Shanghai World Expo 2010 Green Travel Report.

See Kaixin's - GREEN CHINA

 

Prolonged dry season threatens navigation on Yangtze River, warns officials

WUHAN, May 4 (Xinhua) -- Chinese officials on Wednesday warned that an extended low-flow period, caused by the lingering spring drought in central China, might pose a threat to navigation in parts of the Yangtze River, the longest waterway in China.

The persistent drought has reduced water levels in the middle of the river to a "worrying level", driving up the danger of ships grounding, said Wang Xiandeng, head of the Changjiang (Yangtze River) Wuhan Waterway Bureau.

Boats are seen stranding on crackled bed of the Xieshan water area of the Poyang Lake in east China's Jiangxi Province

See Kaixin's - GREEN CHINA

 

 

Ancient Chinese capital opens modern gardening expo with a taste for history

BEIJING, April 28 (Xinhua) - Xi'an, the provincial capital of northwest China's Shaanxi Province, opened a major international horticultural expo on Thursday as it seeks to promote its history as one of China's ancient capitals.

This marks the third time for a Chinese mainland city to host a horticultural event of this scale. Over the past 12 years, two similar expos have been held in the cities of Kunming and Shenyang.

Xi'an International Horticultural Exposition

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

China's Top 10 Leisure Spots

 

 

 

 

 

CCTV

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Studio discussion: How to enforce new rules on fixing home prices

Good regulation, but not so good enforcement? To help answer that, we're joined by our current affairs commentator, Li Yong. Good evening.

Q1:Well, five days since the regulation came in, fixed property prices are still not on show in many real estate offices. As the authorities can't conduct constant checks, what else can be done to enforce the rules?

Q2:Developers who violate the regulation could be fined up to one million yuan, or over 150 thousand US dollars. But the fine is nothing to wealthy developers. Some say the authorities should impose harsher punishments. What do you think?

Q3: There is something in the regulation that's not so easy to carry out, such as how to set fixed prices for second-hand properties. As home owners may ask more than one agencies to sell their properties, how can this area of the market be regulated?

 

Studio discussion: Is Beijing overdeveloped?

Background: Population growth also suggests higher density. There are, on average, nearly 12-hundred people per square kilometer in Beijing. In the downtown zone alone, more than 23-thousand residents occupy an area of one square kilometer. Chaoyang District, in the eastern part of the city, has the most inhabitants, followed by Haidian and Fengtai. Full story >>

Now let's turn to Professor Du Peng once again ...

Q1: People continue to pour into Beijing, due to the possibility of carving out better lives. But the population density has also become very high. Is the city overdeveloped? And how can all these migrants settle down, and pursue prosperous futures in the capital, under such conditions?

 

Studio interview: Reasons and measures to alleviate power shortages in China

For more on the power shortage, we are joined by Li Yong, our current affairs commentator. Hello.

Q1, The unusual timing of this power shortage is a big concern for both enterprises and the government. Traditionally, the summer peak is when a power shortage is likely to take place. What has caused this early power shortage?

Q2, Excessive demand of electricity is thought to be one of the reasons behind this power shortage. But on the other hand, short supply of fuel is making the situation worse. What measures need to be taken to alleviate the situation?

 

Unmarketable vegetables a headache for farmers

Unmarketable vegetables have become a headache for farmers all over China. Two weeks ago, a farmer committed suicide due to the slump in vegetable prices in Shandong Province. During the following investigation, CCTV reporter Zhang Shuo finds out that the vegetable problem is not unique.

Tons of cucumbers piled up... waiting for wholesalers to buy... but no one comes.

Waiting in vain has become a daily routine here for Laokou villagers in south China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region.

 

China: Bin Laden's death positive to anti-terrorism efforts

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said that the death of Osama bin Laden was a milestone, and a positive development for international anti-terrorism efforts.

She added that China has always opposed terrorism in every form and has been actively participating in global anti-terrorism efforts.

 

Millions begin May Day getaway

China's three day Mayday weekend has begun with millions of people heading to the country's scenic and historic spots and festivals.

Eighty thousand people have come to Xi'an in north-west China's Shaanxi province to admire the flowers.

It's the first peak of visitors since the opening of the International Horticultural Expo.

The nearby, Huashan Mountains have also seen a five percent increase in visitors compared with last year.

Tourist Guide said, "My customers reacted positively to the expo yesterday, and they insisted on visiting Huashan Mountain because it's so famous."

Along the ancient silk road, Mogao Grottoes in Dunhuang city have seen a doubling in the number of tourists from around the world over last year, with a range of activities to take part in. (pics of camel riding and sand-skiing)

From the sandy areas and to high up on the snowy mountains, people are grasping the last remnants of winter.

In the northeast of China, and due to its high altitude, Changbai Mountain is still white although most of China is blossoming with spring.

"In my hometown, it's more than 20 degrees Celsius, It's pretty warm. And it's surprising we can see snow up here." Tourist said.

More than three thousand visited Changbai Mountains on a single day, another 30 per cent increase.

 

Xi'an World Horticultural Expo opens

Things are blooming in Xi'an, capital of northwest China's Shaanxi Province. It's playing host to the 2011 World Horticultural Expo.

A ceremony has been held to mark the start of the six-month event.

The theme is the co-existence between nature and mankind. The Expo boasts more than a hundred exhibition sectors.

 

"Meet in Beijing" arts festival kicks off

"Meet in Beijing", the largest and most reputable spring time art festival in China, was kicked off in Beijing on Wednesday. An exceptional show featuring both Peking and western opera opened the 11th year of the event at the Poly Theater.

What kind of chemistry do you get when a 200-year-old Chinese stage art meets western opera, which was born in the early 16th century? The opening ceremony of "Meet in Beijing" provides a very harmonious answer.

 

 

Studio discussion: Significance of Premier Wen's Asia visit

For more analysis of Premier Wen Jiabao's visit to Malaysia and Indonesia, we are joined by our current affairs commentator, Professor Tao Wenzhao. Thank you very much for being with us, professor.

Q1,What's the significance of Premier Wen's visit to the two countries?

Q2,How do you think the premier's visit will affect the situation in the entire region of East Asia?


Expert's analysis on the result of 6th national census

Background: China's State Information Office has release the results of the country's sixth national census. Ma Jiantang, Director of the Bureau of Statistics, who is also the deputy director of the census team, fielded questions from reporters. Full story >>

Topic 1: Will aging population affect China's economy?

Q: Mr. Wang, do you think that with the rapidly aging population, China may soon be unable to sustain the fast economic growth it has experienced over the past three decades?

 

Studio discussion: Will family planning policy end?

Now, we are joined by Mr. Wang Feng, an expert on China's demographic and social change, from the Brookings-Tsinghua Center in Beijing.

Q1: Do you think the significantly slower rate of population growth will lead policymakers to consider putting an end to the family planning policy?

 

 

Studio discussion: Reason behind urban population increase

Background: China's urban population had risen to 665.57 million, accounting for 49.68 percent of the country's total population by Nov. 1 2010, official figures released Thursday indicated. Full story >>

Q:Mr. Wang, what's the reason behind the dramatic increase in the urban population over the past decade?

 

 

CCTV DOCUMENTARY SERIES - Journeys in Time, The Untold stories from the Summer Palace (A series of 10 Documentaries)

 

This is Tibet - TV Series

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The UK taught the world how to produce in the 19th century, the US showed the world how to consume in the 20th century, and China needs to demonstrate how to develop in a sustainable way in the 21st century.

 

 

Beijing refutes claims of unfair business practice

China defended its business environment on Thursday after US Commerce Secretary Gary Locke lodged complaints in that regard, less than a week ahead of the two sides' annual Strategic and Economic Dialogue.

 

Population growth can solve aging issue

The latest population census indicates that the numbers of both Chinese senior citizens above 60 and of the floating population rank top in the world.

In the past decade, Guangdong Province became the most populated place in China, and Henan dropped from being top to the third most-populated province. No country except China has seen such significant changes in population distribution.

China's population balance system has partially failed. The western development strategy cannot reverse the trend of increasing population in the eastern regions. As to the expansion of large cities, there is no sign of this trend changing. Society seems to accept it, and life in large cities is organized around the process. Our society also seems to be giving up on avoiding resource limits in large cities.

In the past, public opinion paid most attention to the aging problem in China as it is also being faced in Europe and Japan. Their examples could be used by China to handle the issue.  Because China has a large population base and the aging problem is more serious in the eastern region, such problem has a good chance of being diluted.

 

Labor strikes do not herald revolution

Some truck drivers in Shanghai went on strike last week to express their discontent over rising costs. The Shanghai municipal government responded by cutting the fees over the weekend and quickly defused the tension. Trucks laden with cargo containers are operating as usual once again at China's busiest port.

This is a typical event with clear labor interests at play. It can be assumed that similar incidents will continue to occur.

Due to the broadening of China's market economy, interests will be further differentiated, and it will become tougher to avoid clashes among various interest groups. Such conflicts will essentially become a normal part of China's social make-up.

Some Western media outlets have paid close attention to the Shanghai strike, and linked it to the "Jasmine Revolution." Over the past months, more than a few Westerners have politicized any mass event in China, and interpreted it as a fuse to spark a "revolution." Nevertheless, such comparisons have consistently proved to be invalid.

Kaixin OpEd – Kaixin heartily agrees.

Kaixin has observed the ‘western’ media try to push, shove and prod the so-labelled ‘Jasmine’ revolution onto China.

It clearly demonstrates both the agenda of the ‘western’ media and the limited understanding of the journalists and editors.

'Wealth drain' reveals sense of insecurity

Attracted by the exciting opportunities, increasing numbers of foreigners are flooding into China annually. Yet at the same time, more and more Chinese millionaires have managed or are considering to emigrate overseas.

The so-called wealth drain is receiving mixed reactions among the public. Some regard it as good for the Chinese economy in the long run. Others are indifferent. Many Web users have expressed strong resentment.

...

Chinese people, either rich or poor, should have confidence in their coutry's future development: No social turmoil, let alone revolutions, will take place. All kinds of social problems will be solved within the framework of the rule of law, which plays a paramount role in punishing lawbreakers as well as protecting the assets that people have legally created.

 

Judge scandal dampens image of justice

The latest scandal about bent judges indicates that the country urgently needs to clean up its law enforcement departments.

Nine judges in the city of Zhanjiang, Guangdong Province could not withstand the lure of bribes offered by a "lawsuit broker” and gave in, said a Xinhua News Agency report that grabbed print and Web headlines Monday.

In collusion with the broker, these judges sought profits in the disguise of legal procedures from investigations and trials to executions, all while expertly covering their tracks. Though the broker took the lion’s share of the loot, the deeds of the corrupt judges have influenced their profession’s reputation as a whole.

 

Crisis looms as population growth slows

China's family-planning policy has been effective in curbing its population growth, but problems such as an aging population and gender ratio imbalance are reaching an alarming stage, threatening the development of the world's No. 2 economy.

According to census data released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) Thursday, the country's population reached 1.37 billion in 2010, including 1.3397 billion on the mainland.

 

Gaps remain in China-US human rights talks

Seemingly perennially opposed on human rights, China and the US met for a dialogue on the issue on Wednesday, in the first face-to-face exchange to occur since a round of finger-pointing earlier this month.
 
However, the long-standing chasm remained as Beijing opted to try and reduce misunderstandings while Washington stuck to its demands for immediate reform, analysts said, turning the debate into a mere posturing session, showing off different ideologies, values and national interests.

 

 

Authorities tight-lipped over Confucius statue removal

Speculation has been rife over the reasons for the overnight disappearance of a 9.5-meter-high bronze statue of Confucius located in front of the National Museum of China near Tiananmen Square Wednesday.

A Global Times reporter found only a deep pit surrounded by construction screens Thursday where the statue had stood.

"It was still there Thursday evening when I got off duty," a security guard at the museum told the Global Times Thursday on condition of anonymity. "But it was gone this morning." Another guard said the same thing, but neither was able to say why the 17-ton bronze sculpture had been removed or to where.

The statue was erected in front of the north gate of the National Museum of China on January 10.

"The statue was designed as a monument to display the characteristics of traditional Chinese culture," its designer Wu Weishan told the Beijing Daily in January.

Wu also claimed his work "blends in well with" the Russian style square, according to the newspaper.

The museum head Lü Zhangshen told the Yangcheng Evening News on March 9 that the statue had nothing to do with politics, but was intended to be a cultural icon.

"The great museums in Western countries usually have statues in front of their entrances," Lü said, adding that the Chinese museum should have one too.

Kaixin OpEd – Kaixin is vastly disappointed.

Kaixin believed that the statue represented a connection with all the philosophies that guided China, not just Confucianism.

Mao had tried to wipe Confucius from history.

So it seemed apt that the two would eye each other off over the square.

Kaixin also believed that China in general and the youth in particular needed a guiding philosophy, other than capitalism (greed is good), to guide them.

If the statue has been removed with the sanction of the government, then it tells clearly that in the governments opinion Confucius has nothing to contribute to modern China.

The reason Mao wanted to wipe Confucius from history was that it represented the old China.

Yet Kaixin believes that Confucius can be applied to modern China and used as the basis for a guiding philosophy that fosters respect for elders, respect for family (both small and large), respect for wisdom and respect for learning.

In Kaixin’s understanding, Confucianism had become rigid and constraining in old China and those elements had to be addressed, a little like the to and fro of great religions in the ‘west’.

Kaixin awaits with interest further developments.

 

 

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Dialogue

A 30 Minute Current Affairs Programme on CCTV - 9 (In English) where current issues are discussed by experts from China and Internationally:

 

 

 

 

US federal debt crisis

Legacy of May 4th Movement

 

SPECIAL DIALOGUE BOAO FORUM FOR ASIA I

SPECIAL DIALOGUE BOAO FORUM FOR ASIA II

 

Carter's ice-breaking trip to DPRK

 

Sino-Australian ties back on track

Consequences of Arab unrest

Government role in inflation control

 

Tsinghua's centennial anniversary

China closes urban-rural gap

BRICS' challenges in having bigger say

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

International News Sources

Learn Chinese Online

 

The Wall Street Journal

U.S., China Agree On 'Direction of Reform' for Yuan

BEIJING—A senior Chinese finance ministry official sounded a conciliatory note on the debate between China and the U.S. over the value of the yuan.

But Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao added that differences persist, as the U.S. is more focused on the extent of appreciation while China is focused on a long-term reform process.

Mr. Zhu's comments came at a press briefing on Friday ahead of the latest round of high-level meetings, dubbed the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, in Washington next week. Top U.S. officials, including Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, are expected to press China to allow the yuan to ...

Kaixin OpEd – There was never any doubt that China would allow the Yuan to become an international currency.

To fully achieve that, China knew that it would have to find a value that was accepted internationally.

Not by America, but internationally.

China is now a leading world economy. At some time in the 21st century it will be ‘the’ leading world economy.

Why would it continue to use the $US?

When you think about it. The $US as the international reserve currency was a trust given to America. America soon de-linked it from gold and since then has systematically debased its real value, using it ruthlessly at times for its own ends.

No wonder the international community wants an alternative.

The Euro was a good try, but soon lost its strength as the various European nations squabbled and then tanked in the GFC, when their own debasement of the Euro was exposed.

No wonder so many countries are happy to enter into bi-lateral currency deals with China.

No wonder SE Asia is considering using the Yuan as its ‘reserve currency’.

China has put in place the conditions for the Yuan to become and international currency, step, by step, by step.

This has tested the patience of the U.S. as it wanted to use the power of the $US to crush the Yuan. After all, that is what it did for the last half of the 20th century, used the strength of the $US for its own economic/hegemonic ends.

As Kaixin has noted before, the Yuan is like a baby panda bear in comparison to the ferocious American Eagle.

China has looked after the baby panda and is protecting it until it is strong enough to fend off the Eagle.

That will be when China is ready, not when America demands.

See Kaixin's - YUAN REVALUATION & INTERNATIONALISATION


Taiwan’s Diminishing Media Freedom

Given its location in a region marked by repressive regimes and tight media controls, it might seem to be splitting hairs to parse media freedoms in Taiwan.

Kaixin OpEd - A 'Free' Media sings the praises of America. A repressed media questions America. About half the population of Taiwan want a united China. So there is debate and questioning of Taiwan's alliance with America.

See Kaixin's - CHINA & TAIWAN

 

Is the Chinese Listing Bubble Going Bust?

CFO Journal’s Emily Chasan files this dispatch on China’s IPO frenzy:

Suddenly the boom in Chinese listings on U.S. exchanges is looking shaky, and two primary reasons were reinforced in separate developments today.

Kaixin OpEd - The 'west' would understand China better if they thought in terms of 100 years, not 3 months.

 

China Digital Times

“Either Democratize or Don’t”: Netizens Respond to Hu Xijin’s “Path to Democracy”

Hu Xijin is the Editor-in-Chief of Global Times, a sister publication of People’s Daily. He opened a microblog account on Sina as open calls for protests in China in support of the Middle East’s Jasmine Revolution were circulating online. Despite the fact that most of the comments on his posts are negative, Hu continues to update his microblog frequently and now has over a million followers. The following is typical of the exchanges seen on his microblog (translated by CDT).

Kaixin OpEd
- A healthy debate about democracy.

Kaixin never ceases to be amazed at the belief by pro-democracy supporters in China that they can run the country better than it is being run.

It is not the people's voice they respect, it is theirs.

Most readers from the 'west' will not like the following comment, but what the hell ...

Xiaosui (who has been living in Australia now for three years) manages a restaurant within a major western hotel. She has a Bach Fin and is a fully qualified and experienced teacher, but Australia does not recognise these qualifications. Perforce she mixes with the great unwashed. She listens to their conversations and their opinions. She comes home and notes simply "These people decide who governs Australia?"

She does not look down on them, just their level of education, their level of understanding. During the Cultural Revolution she bore the brunt of the great unwashed being given power.

Xiaosui is adamant that it is too soon for democracy in China. The vast majority of the people, who live in rural China, are simply not well enough educated. That leaves aside regional and ethnic issues.

'Western' Kaixin hears many references to democracy. He is not convinced that many people really understood what it means. For most it is the simple act of giving everyone the right to vote. Perhaps they should study what democracy was like in ancient Athens, and why they did not give the great unwashed the vote.

Indeed, Sir Winston Churchill, who voted to extend the franchise in England to all men and women, noted at the end of his life that the great unwashed had used this power for selfish ends and would eventually debase it.

That certainly is a topic for debate.

However, it highlights the complex nature of this concept, democracy.

 

The New York Times

The Outlook for China’s Currency
By LAURA D'ANDREA TYSON


Laura D’Andrea Tyson is a professor at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, and served as chairwoman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President Clinton.

The demand for tough action by American policy makers fails to recognize that the renminbi has already appreciated significantly relative to the dollar, exaggerates the benefits of a stronger renminbi for the United States and overlooks the benefits of a stronger renminbi for China itself.

See Kaixin's - YUAN REVALUATION & INTERNATIONALISATION


Letter from China
Mao's Legacy Still Divides China

By DIDI KIRSTEN TATLOW

BEIJING — “At the center of the center of China lies a corpse that nobody dares remove.”

So runs the memorable opening line of “Behind the Forbidden Door,” a book published in 1985 by the Italian journalist Tiziano Terzani.

 

Room For Debate

Will China Achieve Science Supremacy?


A recent Times article described how China is stepping up efforts to lure home the top Chinese scholars who live and work abroad. The nation is already second only to the United States in the volume of scientific papers published, and it has, as Thomas Friedman pointed out, more students in technical colleges and universities than any other country.

But China’s drive to succeed in the sciences is also subjecting its research establishment to intense pressure and sharper scrutiny. And as the standoff last week between Google and China demonstrated, the government controls the give and take of information.

How likely is it that China will become the world’s leader in science and technology, and what are the impediments to creating a research climate that would allow scientists to thrive?

    Gordon G. Chang, author and columnist
    Cong Cao, author of “China’s Scientific Elite”
    John Kao, founder of Institute for Large Scale Innovation
    Vivek Wadhwa, entrepreneur and columnist
    Jonathan Moreno, professor of history and sociology of science
    Gang Xiao, professor of physics and engineering

 

Caixin Online

Chimerica's Slippery Slope to Stagflation
By Andy Xie


Watch for more Fed quantitative easing, slower growth and policy traps in the coming quarters

The global economy is heading toward another double-dip scare, possibly in the third quarter, in what could be a repeat of summer 2010.

Financial markets may stumble in a few months, and that could prompt the U.S. Federal Reserve to introduce a third round of quantitative easing or an equivalent, which would be another step down the path toward stagflation. In this scenario, China's current monetary tightening policy would be difficult to sustain.


HSBC Says Yuan to be Among Top Three Int'l Currencies

The HSBC report also predicted that by 2015 over half of all China's trade settlements will be yuan-denominated, with the total amount reaching US$ 2 trillion


(Beijing) – China's currency, the yuan, is expected to outrank the British pound to become one of the three most favored international trade settlement currencies in the latter half of this year.

See Kaixin's - YUAN REVALUATION & INTERNATIONALISATION

 

These Bonds, Investors Say, Were Made in Hell

Bond holders cried foul, but no one listened, when the Sichuan government pulled an asset transfer trick

Angry institutional bond investors holding a Sichuan Province highway construction company's debt are stirring a hornet's nest over a financial practice that's apparently commonly used by local government financing platforms across China.

 

Mainland Developers Look to Overseas Financing

Over 20 domestic property firms have raised a combined 62 billion yuan from offshore financial markets so far this year, according to consultancy World Union

(Beijing) – Mainland developers have started to give overseas financing possibilities more than just a glance amid increasingly tighter credit controls at home.

 

CASS: Home Prices to Fall on Higher Housing Inventory

Government-subsidized low-cost housing has eased supply concerns in the housing market, says the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences

(Beijing) -- China's overall home prices may come down in 2011, partly due to a greater housing supply created by government-subsidized low-cost housing, the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) said in a report on May 5.

 

Asia Times Online

BOOK REVIEW
When Attlee met Mao
Passport to Peking, A very British mission to Mao's China by Patrick Wright

Contrary to popular belief, United States president Richard Nixon was not the first Westerner to visit China since the communist takeover in 1949. As far back as the early 1950s there was a steady flow of foreign delegations that came to observe, probe or pay homage to China's mysterious new rulers, but their visits achieved few breakthroughs and were soon forgotten.


SINOGRAPH
Power bubbles are Hu's big challenge
By Francesco Sisci


China side-stepped financial crisis by throwing the lion's share of rescue funds at state-owned enterprises, but this only helped fuel the excesses of these states within a state. Along with democratization to bring murky politics into the open, President Hu Jintao needs a very quick agenda for privatization. With so many having so much to lose, the fight will be tough.


SUN WUKONG
China sees bright side of elite exodus
By Wu Zhong, China Editor

A rising number of rich and talented Chinese are emigrating for investment, study and work opportunities, particularly to the West. This has raised concerns over capital loss and a "brain drain", but is better interpreted as a sign of China's increasing openness and prosperity.

 

Russia, China clash over oil price, supply
By John Helmer


Four months after the first Russian crude oil started pumping into the Chinese town of Daqing, Russian pipeline company Transneft has charged China National Petroleum Co with violating their supply contract and is threatening to open court proceedings in London.

 

THE ROVING EYE

Obama/Osama rock the casbah

By Pepe Escobar

The more we look at it, the targeted assassination of Bin Laden shows facets of that famous children's toy, the jack-in-the-box.Major powers playing this game - the US and Saudi Arabia - have finally decided they no longer needed a bogeyman conveniently resurfaced on and off to justify anything, from lack of democracy to brutal crackdowns or even drone attacks gone wrong. But why right now?

Kaixin OpEd - Osama - KIA or Assination

Osama's wife rushing a fully armed marine does not sound much of a 'firefight'.

Osama was un-armed and protected by his ..... wife, who was shot in the leg. Sounds like the marines were in complete control of the situation.

Exit the bogeyman .... enter the ??????

Kaixin does not have a huge amount of sympathy for the guy, but the waters are murky, very murky indeed.

 

Total joins gamblers at Russian roulette
By Robert M Cutler


France's Total is joining Western rivals in raising its investment in Russia's vast energy reserves, despite the country's still challenging political environment. China alone seems to recognize Russia's less-than-meticulous respect for agreements.

 

CHINA AND THE STATUS QUO
Biding time for an orderly rise
By Francesco Sisci


This is the conclusion of a three-part report.
Part 1: China banks on giving peace a chance
Part 2: The China 'threat' as a blessing

Keeping the present geopolitical status quo going is an imperative for China since American-led globalization allows it to concentrate on building economic might with the thought that political clout will follow. But Beijing is in no hurry to take over America's costly military or political responsibilities, and, besides, history tells the leadership to play the long game.

 

 

Kaixin Search Engine

Research China

Kaixin has a wealth of archived news & articles on all aspects of China.

The powerful Google Kaixin Site search allows you to search Kaixin by topic, key word, name, specific date ...

Kaixin Site Search

 

 

 

See Over for the 6th of MAY 2011

 

 

 

 

CULTURAL CHINA

Articles of interest from the week's news

Insights into China's Society & Cutlure

 

 

CCTV9 - Rediscovering the Yangtze River

 

 

WSJ - A Director’s Message in ‘Buddha Mountain’ + VIDEO

Over the past decade, Li Yu has emerged as one of China’s most provocative art-house film directors. Her movies have often run afoul of mainland authorities because of the taboo and sensitive subjects they take on.

Her latest, “Buddha Mountain,” which opened this week in Hong Kong, also explores potentially delicate social topics but it has been less fraught with troubles over censorship.

Actors from left, Chen Po Lin, Fei Long, and actress Fan Bingbing star in ‘Buddha Mountain.’

 

Trailer: Buddha Mountain 观音山 - 最新预告片 (范冰冰东京封后!!!)

 

 

 

 

High notes of life

Young opera star combines her own passion with seven generations of family tradition

Unlike her peers who were born in the 1980s and are fascinated by modern Western pop music and soap operas, Tan Na focuses her mind on Peking opera, determined to learn and develop the traditional Chinese art.

Tan's success in resisting modern temptations may be due to the long tradition of opera in her family.

Born in 1981 in Beijing, Tan is a seventh-generation descendant of Tan Xinpei, a famous Peking opera artist who lived from 1847 to 1917 and was well-known for his roles of laosheng - a term that refers to elderly male roles.

Tan fell in love with Peking opera at a very young age. In 1992, Tan was enrolled at Beijing Opera School (which is now renamed Beijing Vocational Institute of Local Opera and Arts). Her focus was to play qingyi - a term that refers to roles of faithful wife, lover or maiden in distress.

After graduation in 1998, Tan became a professional performer in Beijing Peking Opera Theater. After that, with the stage name Tan Mingxin, she played different roles in classic operas such as Celestial Beauty Scattering Flowers, Farewell My Concubine and The Drunken Beauty.

Clockwise:Tan Na checks her make-up and puts on an elaborate hair ornament before her performance. The diva performs, sans face paint, singing highlights from the opera Mu Guiying. Elaborate fingerwork and footwork demand hours of rehearsals before a performance. Tan Na (middle) performs another classic, The Drunken Beauty. The actress grips a prop at rehearsal.

 

 

Sailing to Yangzhou

It's best to visit Yangzhou in spring, when the gardens and parks are blooming, even if the place is crowded, Zhang Yue discovers.

My trip to Yangzhou coincided with Qingming (Tomb Sweeping) Festival in April and I was worried about the crowds.

I've never been a big fan of scenic spots during holidays because in most cases you will find yourself surrounded by elbows, trying to find a way out.

Luckily, my two-day trip to Yangzhou, in Jiangsu province, was filled with pleasure.

My interest in Yangzhou was aroused by a Tang Dynasty poem written by Li Bai about 1,300 years ago - "Sailing to Yangzhou in March when blossoms curl like smoke on the river".

Five Pavilion Bridge, built 500 years ago on Slender West Lake, in Yangzhou.

 

 

 

 

Shangri-La - CCTV DOCUMENTARY

Literally meaning "sun and moon in heart" in Tibetan, Shangri-La, located in Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Yunnan province, covering 23,870 square kilometers, is a well-know tourist spot, an ideal home only found in heaven.

Not everybody has read the book - lost horizon (1933), but few would not recognize the name of Shangri-La, a heaven away from the turbulent mundane world.

 

Precious Jade Dew Tea faces risk of disappearing in Hubei

A tea maker screens fragmentary tealeaves with a sieve to make Enshi Yulu Tea or Jade Dew Tea in Enshi Tujia and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, central China's Hubei province, April 30, 2011. The Jade Dew Tea, originating from the Tang Dynasty (618-907) and popular during the Qing Dynasty (1616-1911), is one of the very few types of steamed green teas in China. The fresh tealeaves can only be processed from early April to early May with tealeaves steamed first and then rolled, dried and picked totally by hand. During the process of making the tea, the tea makers have to stand for a long time and have hands bear high temperature, so very few young people are now willing to learn the skill, making the craftsmanship on the verge of death. Li Zongmeng and Lei Yuangui, professional Jade Dew Tea makers, have been engaged in manually making the tea for 40 years here.

See Kaixin's:

The story of the Pu'er Tea 普洱茶 the famous red tea of China.

Chinese green tea -Tie Guan Yin’s story 铁观音

Magic Tibetan Tea - Po Cha 'Tibetan Butter Tea'

 

 

WSJ - Art’s Obsession With Mao Zedong

Would you hang a picture of Mao Zedong in your home?


Many people do, says Eric Chang, the international director of 20th-century Chinese art and Asian contemporary art for Christie’s in Hong Kong. In the auction house’s sale of Asian contemporary art — on May 28-29 — the face of Chairman Mao will be a recurring theme.

Wang Guangyi’s ‘Mao Zedong — No. 2 of Red Box’

 

Food safety concerns drive Chinese back to the farm

To say that Shen Huiqiang, a former real estate executive, is passionate about organic farming would be a gross understatement. Three years ago, the 32-year-old Zhejiang native quit a 200,000-yuan-a-year job in Beijing to return to his hometown, where he put his entire 400,000-yuan-in-savings into a new home for him and his wife and parents, and a 40,000-square-meter farm he leased from local farmers. Shen had decided to live off the land.

You are what you eat: Former-executive-turned-organic-farmer Shen Huiqiang proudly shows his naturally-grown corn from his own field.

 

Hangzhou cartoon festival kicks off

The seventh International Cartoon Festival has kicked off in Hangzhou, east China. The event will last for six days until Tuesday.

With the theme "cartoon my city and cartoon my life", the Hangzhou cartoon festival holds multiple events including exhibitions, competitions and forums.

More than 300 foreign cartoon companies are attending the event. Hangzhou-made cartoon movie "Dream back to Jinsha City" won the best Chinese Cartoon Award.

 

 

Thousands of Beijing residents got into the green spirit last Friday to celebrate the 42nd World Earth Day

During an event organized by Roots and Shoots, artists from China and the United States tried to convey the idea "no waste material is useless" by creating works made out of used paper and plastic.

A wedding gown made of paper, an old tablecloth and a plastic net used to protect packaged fruit was just one of the works on show outside the Capital Library.

"All waste can be turned into art if we make the best of their characteristics," said Cao Zuolan, who made the dress.

As the chief editor of a fashion magazine, Cao likes to design fashionable and environmentally friendly clothes in her spare time, but this was her first attempt at a wedding gown.

A wedding gown made of paper, an old tablecloth and plastic net on show at an Earth Day event on April 23 in front of the Capital Library.

See Kaixin's - GREEN CHINA

 

 

1st Beijing international film festival kicked off Saturday

The first Beijing International Film Festival kicked off on Saturday night, April 23, with a star-studded red carpet walk and a grand opening ceremony at the National Center for the Performing Arts.

Among the celebration were heavyweights from Chinese film industry like actor Jackie Chan, Zhang Ziyi, the festival's image ambassadors, and directors John Woo, Peter Chan as well as big names from key international film festivals like Marco Muller from Italy, Cameron Bailey from Toronto and Lee Yong Kwan from Busan.

Renowned director Darren Aronofsky from Oscar-winning film "Black Swan" and Rob Minkoff, helmer of "Lion King" and "The Forbidden Kingdom" also showed up for the spectacular gathering.

This event marks another world shaking event in Beijing after it successfully hosted the Olympic Games in 2008, and a big stride the modern metropolis has made to have the same influence in the world's cinema culture alongside sports.

As the culture center of China, the capital city produced the very first Chinese film "The Battle of Dingjunshan" in 1905 and takes up 50% in the country's film output, said Guo Jinlong, mayor of Beijing at the ceremony.

Jackie Chan and Zhang Ziyi, image ambassadors for the 1st Beijing International Film Festival walk the red carpet at the festival's opening ceremony in Beijing's the National Center for the Performing Arts Saturday night, April 23, 2011.

See Kaixin's - Chinese Movies

 

CCTV Beijing International Film Festival kicks off at NCPA - VIDEO

One of the most anticipated events in China's film industry this year and the first ever Film Festival in the capital, "Beijing International Film Festival" kicked off at the National Center for the Performing Arts on Saturday. Many renown directors, actors and actresses walked the red carpet.

Organized by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television and the Beijing Municipal Government, the festival saw Top Chinese film stars and renowned directors such as Fan Bingbing and Feng Xiaogang strut their stuff in front of the Beijing and international media.

Meanwhile, the opening ceremony also saw many international representatives of the movie industry attend including John Woo, Lion King Director Rob Mintoff, actors Edmond Wong and Director Bak-Ming. International movie stars Jackie Chan and Zhang Ziyi were featured as the "Image Ambassadors" of the event, who have contributed much of their efforts on promoting not only the film festival, but also the city of Beijing.

 

Ethnic Minority Languages Film Festival kicks off

As part of the ongoing Beijing International Film Festival, "China's Ethnic Minority Languages Film Festival" is an event that screens films produced by China's ethnic minority groups. This is the first time that a film festival has dedicated an independent event to ethnic films in the country.

Opened in Jackie Chan Cinema on Monday, the panorama features 30 films from 12 ethnic minority groups, all shot in their native languages with Chinese and English subtitles. All the familiar elements representing the minorities such as the Kazakh yurts, yaks on Tibetan Plateau and Mongolian's Horsehead Zither will show up in the panorama.

 

Jade necklace worth 200 mln Yuan

A staff member shows a jade necklace worth 200 million Yuan (some 30 million U.S. dollars) in a jewelry shop in Nanjing, capital of east China's Jiangsu Province, April 24, 2011. It took eight years to finish the 199.8 gramme jade necklace.

 

Serve the goddess who drinks - VIDEO

You spin a prayer wheel. You bring a pot of butter. You prepare a white Hada. And you buy a bottle of wine.

Bringing all the necessary offerings, China Daily's multimedia reporter Feng Xin takes you to Drashilhakang Monastery, in Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet autonomous region, to serve one goddess who drinks.

See Kaixin's -CHINA & TIBET


Chinese tea culture - VIDEO

Q1: Good evening, Zhang Shuo. Can you tell us more about Chinese tea culture?

A1: Yes, tea is the national beverage of China. Chinese are believed to have enjoyed tea drinking for more than four thousand years, the longest in the world. In Traditional Chinese culture, tea drinkers were always considered to be elite and are highly respected by society. Drinking tea also demonstrate personal morality, education, principle and social status. This is why serving tea gradually became an essential part of Chinese social life. In modern China, even the simplest dwelling has a tea set and a water heater for making a hot cup of tea. These implements are symbols of welcome to visitors and neighbors. Traditionally, a visitor to a Chinese home is expected to sit down and drink hot tea while talking.

In Chinese culture, it is also a sign of respect to serve someone tea. A younger person can show respect and thanks to an older person by offering them a cup of tea. This is especially common during big events, like birthdays and during spring festival.

And I want to show you another special occasion where tea is served. It is this, traditional Chinese weddings. In a traditional Chinese marriage ceremony, both the bride and groom kneel in front of their parents and serve them tea. This is a way of expressing gratitude to their elders for raising them up.

Also, in modern China, tea is an important social tool. People go to tea houses, not for the drink, but for a place to meet with people. So the next time, if someone ask you out for a cup of tea, it is actually an implicit way to invite you to a gathering.

Over the course of 4 thousand years, tea has also had a major influence on the development of Chinese culture. Tea is a mainstay in Chinese literature, arts, philosophy and also religion. Tea is connected closely with Taoism, Buddhism and Confucianism. Going back to the Tang Dynasty 15 hundred years ago, drinking tea is seen as an essential part of personal cultivation.

Also starting from the Tang Dynasty is the tea ceremony. From there, the art form spread to neighboring countries including Japan and Korea. Unlike the world-renowned Japanese tea ceremony, the Chinese one emphasizes the tea rather than the ceremony, like the taste of the tea and the difference between various cups.

Considering all those aspects, I believe China has done a very good job in the past 4 thousand years to preserve tea culture. However, during my investigation of the tea market, I found that China is not doing so well in translating this rich culture into a world leading business. Let's take a look.

See Kaixin's:

The story of the Pu'er Tea 普洱茶 the famous red tea of China

Chinese green tea -Tie Guan Yin’s story 铁观音

Magic Tibetan Tea - Po Cha 'Tibetan Butter Tea'

 

 

“Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival” - VIDEO

With drumbeats thundering and lions dancing, the Beijing Xicheng District Shichahai Maiden Voyage Ceremony was kicked off on the lakeside of Shichahai on April 20, 2011.

Sixteen sculling boats, built according to the renowned Chinese painting “Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival”, sailed on the lake. The captain of the ship sang traditional sailing songs, taking the guests to enjoy the beauty of Shichahai, an oasis in the heart of Beijing.

The event was designed to recreate the busy scene of the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal from ancient times, as well as to attract more tourists by showcasing the charm of Shichahai at the beginning and the end of the Beijing-Hangzhou Grand Canal.

The ceremony will become an annual event on the date of Grain Rain, the 6th solar term each year.

 

 

The joy of school for Tibetan pupils

Tibetan primary school students write sentences and words on a blackboard on April 18, 2011, in Kangding, Sichuan province. The school with a history of more than 60 years has evolved into a model school in local rural areas for its free and boarding education system.

 

CCTV Ancient Tibetan temples get makeover VIDEO

Let's head to southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, where ancient Buddhist temples dating back several centuries are receiving a facelift.

A professional team is hard at work to ensure an authentic restoration at Sera Monastery near the regional capital Lhasa.

The Sera Monastery plays a major role in Tibetan Buddhism and culture.
But 600 years of exposure to the plateau's harsh weather has taken its toll on the temple just north of Lhasa.

See Kaixin's - CHINA & TIBET

 

Tsinghua in her students' eyes - VIDEO

If you love a place, you dread any moment of it slipping away. So you take pictures.

That's the way a group of Tsinghua students have chosen to record the most treasured years of their lives – the time they spent on the Tsinghua University campus.

After sharing these photos on the Internet for some years, they decided to make an album of their best works as a present for the university's centenary.

 

Chinese state councilor visits Harvard University

BOSTON, April 13 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor Liu Yandong says she expects Harvard University to continue playing an active role in promoting exchanges of education, science and technology, and culture between China and the United States.

Havard has shared a long-standing friendship with China and has established fruitful cooperation with several higher education institutions in China in recent years, Liu said at a welcome reception hosted by the world-renowned university on Wednesday.

 

China mulls legislation on domestic violence: women' s federation

CHANGCHUN, April 14 (Xinhua) - Drafting China's first independent law on domestic violence has already been put on the country's top legislature's agenda, an official with the All-China Women's Federation (ACWF) said.

This would be the country's first independent and comprehensive law on domestic violence, as currently only a few clauses in several other laws, such as the Marriage Law, have addressed some aspects of the offence.

 

 

 

Chinese Women's Research Network (WSIC)

 

All0China Women's Federation (ACWF)

 

 

Women in China

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ChinaLoveCupid/ChineseLoveLinks - Serious Chinese Dating Relationships

 

Books by the Editors

 

Set in Zanzibar

'A maharaja’s ruby cast on a Persian carpet by the blackest of hands'

 

 

Chapter One

London 1910

“Hello, who are you? I am Oliver, is Edward at home?”

The words were spoken by a tall, impeccably dressed young man rushing into Edward’s flat, shaking off surplus water and calling for whisky while shoving his umbrella into a stand; a shaggy grey Irish wolfhound, impeccably dressed by savile row.

Susan laughed, her hazel eyes dancing with the exhilaration of the new. “Yes, he is having a bath. I think he is trying to get warm. I’m Susan, Susan Carey, his sister.

...

They chatted, tentatively at first, getting to know one another. Edward had not seen Susan for two years and was unsure how his sister would take his new relationship. Oliver was intrigued by Susan. An attractive, self-assured young lady of high intelligence with a degree was a rare find. And, as fate would have it, she was also a trained and experienced teacher. He suggested a picnic at Oxford, which was met with ready acquiescence.

“I’ll see if the Rolls is available,” mused Oliver. “Must ring father, haven’t spoken to him in ages.”

Oliver, Sir Oliver Marchmaine, was an unaffected young man of intense intelligence who saw life as a great adventure to be lived to the full. He was also unyieldingly loyal to his country, England, which is why he had joined Military Intelligence on leaving Oxford.

It was 1910 and Europe was stirring. It was a time full of interest, intrigue and danger, the European chessboard becoming increasingly complex, the moves more subtle. A time when an unexpected move or feint could have profound consequences.

...

The woman smiled to acknowledge Asim’s greeting, his eyes looking directly at her from within the folds of an impossibly white kufiyya. A peregrine falcon: lean, intense, beautiful, with a hunter’s gaze.

“You were sent by Sir Edward Clark?” asked Asim.

The question was direct, intended merely to ascertain the relevant information. He did not respond to her femininity. Did not glance she remembered, allowed herself to remember. The counterpoint between the masculine and the feminine was missing. Something in him, that part of him, had withered to the point of extinction. She did not know that then. That was to be part of her journey.

“Yes, my name is Susan, Susan Carey. I am the teacher.”

 

$US4.99

 

 

Pick'n Season

Short stories on a theme set in Tasmania, Australia

Where style and story telling are explored.

$US2.99

 

 

The Cultural Revolution through my Eyes

By Zhou Xiaosui

$US2.99

I was born in 1966, the year China the Culture Revolution began. My mother told me when I was just born that a nurse held me in her arms and said, "come, look at this girl, she is so pretty, her eyes are so big". Another nurse who was in the room standing in front of the window, said, "come here and look at the people marching down the street wearing high caps!"

They were the people the Gong Chan Party (The Communist Party) had branded as counter-revolutionary. They were being marched down the street as an example.

This is the story of my life, and my family's life, in the time of the Cultural Revolution. I hope you will be interested in seeing China through my eyes.

 

Chapter One

I was Born in this Time

This was a time of unrest and uncertainty. A time that was to last for 10 long years and profoundly affected my family.

Just after I was born, the Government accused my father of being a counter-revolutionary because his family had moved from China and all lived overseas. So he lost his job as a teacher. He wasn’t allowed to work and had to stay at home reflecting on what he had done wrong. This was bad for my father, but it was good for me. My father could look after me at home, and over the early years of my growing up I became very close to my father who was also my first teacher.

I remember, he hung a blanket by the four corners to become a hammock, and he put me inside. He would rock me to and fro when I cried or became restless. He needed to write two pieces for the Government about his thinking and saying sorry that his family left China and lived overseas. He also had to embroider a Mao Zhengdong photo.

Just like this, my father looked after me and finished his thinking “reconstruct”.

My parents told me I was a lambkin, a fat lot cry. My father really loved me. At that time, no-one listened for him, so he talked to me everyday. He talked and talked and I laughed and laughed. My father said he looked at me and I made him so happy.

By the time I was one year old, I had worn out four blankets!

When I was one year old, my father who had lost his job as a teacher, had to go to a Government building company to become a general labourer. It was very hard work for a teacher. At night he had to go to re-education meetings. When I was older and started to understand something of what had happened in my family, my sister, who is six years older than me, told me, “in this time, many nights she saw my father come back from the meeting with bruises and wounds all over the body." These had been inflicted by the Hong Wei Bing. My mother, who was a Doctor, cried and helped my father clean the wounds. These beatings went on night after night, my father wanted to die. My mother told him, “I need you, your two children need you, they need to have a father, you must live!’

Hong Wei Bing: Hong = red; wei = to guard, to protect; bing = soldier

In Chinese culture, ‘hong’ is lucky and represents good.

The Hong Wei Bing was the Communists Party’s youth cadre. It was made up of students in high school aged between 12 and 18. They were given authority over any person branded as a counter-revolutionary. They were, of course, too young and callow to be given that much power, so they abused it. It would be like giving the students at your local High School authority, without boundaries, over anyone in your town who did not seem to conform, including their teachers.

The Government officials ran the re-education meeting with the Hong Wei Bing.

The Hong Wei Bing harassed anyone who was at the meeting. Asking questions like, ‘Did you do the bad thing for the Government, for Mao?’, ‘Do you love Mao?’, ‘Why does your family live overseas?’ ………… questions that had to be answered quickly and with enthusiasm. If the Hong Wei Bing were not satisfied with the answer, or even if they did not like your demeanor, of if they just wanted to hurt you, then they would beat you up. Many people died from these beatings.

My father did not, he lived.

 

$US2.99

 

 

My Father's Wisdom

By Zhou Xiaosui

I was born in 1966, the year China the Culture Revolution began. My mother told me when I was just born that a nurse held me in her arms and said, "come, look at this girl, she is so pretty, her eyes are so big". Another nurse who was in the room standing in front of the window, said, "come here and look at the people marching down the street wearing high caps!"

They were the people the Gong Chan Party (The Communist Party) had branded as counter-revolutionary. They were being marched down the street as an example.

These are some of the stories my father taught my in this time.

$US2.99