The Lion Awakes
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Daily News, Culture & Current Affairs about China
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Recently it seems that China and Japan have fallen into the strange circle that if this issue cannot be resolved the bilateral ties will not advance any more.
The government is expected to take measures to boost growth by further loosening monetary and fiscal policy as inflation eased to a 29-month low in June.
Due to the global financial crisis, foreign direct investment worldwide has been weak since 2008, but China's outbound investment has grown.
Officials face removal from their posts if they are found overspending on vehicles, receptions and overseas trips, according to a new rule.
A series of measures, including "significantly raising" the workforce at the United Nations, will be introduced over the next three years.
|Senior Chinese official, French FM vow to boost ties|
|State Councilor Dai Bingguo on Monday met with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, pledging to boost Sino-French ties.|
News and Current Affairs
The Wall Street Journal
Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Los Angeles, where the big China worry is protectionism, not currency.
China's trade surplus widened in June as export and import growth both weakened, reflecting faltering economic conditions in China and abroad.
China's third-largest property developer purchased land in three cities, making it the latest real-estate heavyweight to wade into the market as signs of a turnaround emerge.
Russell Leigh Moses is a Beijing-based analyst and professor who writes on Chinese politics. He is writing a book on the changing role of power in the Chinese political system.
It’s not easy being a local government official in China.
News this week of the violent suppression of protests over a planned metals plant in the Sichuan city of Shifang has once again shined a light on how challenged China’s leaders can be when it comes to handling public discontent. Reacting to the now viral images of tear gas and bloodied bystanders that came out of Sichuan on Monday, many critics have justifiably questioned the Communist Party’s ability to maintain credibility with an increasingly plugged-in and rights-conscious populace.
But if the Shifang protests illustrate growing anxiety among China’s masses, they also highlight the equally problematic, if less often discussed, frustrations of the party’s local cadres.
The below commentary by Wall Street Journal Senior Editor Bob Davis drew considerable discussion on social media sites when it was posted earlier Wednesday on the Journal’s Chinese-language website. Supporters of China’s space program argued that it is a necessary step as China advances on the world stage and could challenge the U.S.’s strong position in space. Detractors said the country could better spend money on its considerable social and environmental problems. The column is reprinted here:
It made a lovely photo: three Chinese space explorers sitting on lawn chairs in the Inner Mongolian desert with their scorched Shenzhou-9 space capsule behind them. All three held bouquets of flowers for a job well done.
China’s consumer inflation eased in June, slipping back to its lowest level in two-and-a-half years, and leaving plenty of room for Beijing to use more aggressive policies to support flagging economic growth. The June consumer price index rose 2.2% year-on-year against a 3% rise in May – well below the government’s target of 4% for the year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics. Analysts weigh in:
Underlying price pressures are weak and will be no constraint to further policy easing. Premier Wen Jiabao made clear over the weekend that the government intends to keep loosening policy…The fall (in headline consumer price inflation rate) was broadly as expected. The drop was due to a big decline in food price inflation (from 6.4% to 3.8%). Non-food inflation was unchanged at 1.4%. Producer price inflation has now been negative for four months, and with commodity prices at their current level, looks likely to remain negative in 2013. – Mark Williams, Capital Economics
China is so big and so complicated that most scholars have tended to view it in glorious isolation, as a literally incomparable place.
In “Beyond the Middle Kingdom,” a new collection of essays edited by Indiana University professor and China-hand Scott Kennedy, some of the world’s leading China scholars attempt to turn that around – exploring China in comparative perspective.
China Real Time recently caught up with Mr. Kennedy to get the lowdown on the new approach.
Most China experts look at the middle kingdom in isolation, why is that?
Because of China’s size, the complexity of Chinese culture, and the country’s long history, many experts begin with the untested assumption that China is unique, and that comparison would only yield contrasts.
The subject of money is once again drawing attention to Wenzhou, the east-coast city famous for entrepreneurship and creative finance. But this time, the focus is squarely on local officials’ restaurant bills.
Wenzhou officials have limited official reception spending to 60 yuan (about $9.40) per meal per person, according to an announcement published by the local government office and the city’s disciplinary commission. The new measure also requires all local government offices to eschew lunch-time drinking, luxurious banquets, overspending in meals and throwing each other lavish receptions.
The New York Times
The first American to join the Chinese Communist Party turns 91 next month, and a new documentary describes how a kid from Charleston, South Carolina, ended up in a mountain cave playing gin rummy with Mao Zedong.
Markets fell on Monday after reports of slowdowns in consumer and producer prices.
Premier Wen Jiabao of China on Sunday called for the government to become more aggressive in using fiscal and monetary tools to respond to a slowing economy.
Chinese officials gave a muted reponse to a U.S. protest to the World Trade Organization about high tariffs on some auto imports.
Asia Times Online
Russia loses hold on Central Asian pivot
Resurgent nationalism in Tajikistan is waking up Russia to a dramatic shift in its hold over a one-time "little brother", just as China stealthily pours in massive investment and military support to draw the Tajik leadership into its orbit. Moscow and the United States are fast losing leverage in a country that is on the way to becoming a "pivot state" in Central Asia's post-2014 Afghan backdrop. - M K Bhadrakumar
Beijing sets the bar
for Olympian effort
Four years ago in Beijing, China proved its status as a world power by staging a successful Olympiad. In 2012, the standards set by Beijing are a measure for London and Britain to beat. And even as the power emanating from that most international and diverse of Western capitals is no match for China's, Britain still has an important geopolitical role within its reach.
- Francesco Sisci
Bo's ghost haunts CCP congress
The Chinese Communist Party will find it easy to end disgraced former Chongqing party chief Bo Xilai's political and public life over corruption charges, but as the CCP prepares for its 18th National Congress, it cannot ignore the continuing popularity of his model to close China's wealth gap. The center will also face some tough questions over Bo's meteoric rise.
- Wu Zhong
China isn't helping itself
Revisions to China's regulations on compulsory licensing of drug patents are perfectly legal, but they are worrying international pharmaceutical companies since the reforms threaten the considerable protection big pharma has enjoyed over the past three decades. - Benjamin A Shobert
Chinese make case
for rare earth curbs
A Chinese "White Paper" on rare earths intends to defend China against an assault upon its export limitations and other alleged barriers to trade. Yet those curbs have led to new finds that may ease supply fears long before a World Trade Organization ruling is made. - Robert M Cutler
One country, two (failed) systems
The Hong Kongers who marched across the city to vent anger against new CEO Leung Chun-ying and mother China at the weekend are the simmering masses of a Hong Kong Spring that has been germinating for 15 years. For them, "One country, two systems" has failed because it's put power in the palms of billionaires dancing to the mainland's tune.
- Pepe Escobar
THE ROVING EYE
An extreme traveler, Pepe's nose for news has taken him to all parts of the Pepe Escobar globe. He was in Afghanistan and interviewed the military leader of the anti-Taliban Northern Alliance, Ahmad Shah Masoud, a couple of weeks before his assassination
- Country finishes below most other Asian nations in terms of employee satisfaction
- Low June figures even cause some analysts to voice concerns about deflation