China Press Review – April 30, 2020

Press review

Until a vaccine is found, Covid-19 will continue to maul the economy – whatever markets believe
Investors are right to draw comfort from the massive stimulus injected to prevent a crash, but they should not dismiss the extent of the disease’s impact on the global economy

Coronavirus: China economy facing uneven recovery, three months after lockdown
The uneven nature of China’s economic recovery from the coronavirus lockdown was laid bare in separate surveys released on Thursday   Exporters warned the worst might be ahead, while Beijing looks set to pump money into construction projects to salvage the recovery effort

It’s complicated: China-Europe relations hit by diversity, distrust and dogmatism during pandemic
European nations are divided over how best to deal with Beijing, which looms larger in their policy and public debates    Think tanks came together and reported on China’s much-touted medical aid and ‘mask diplomacy’ during Covid-19 crisis

Sweden plans to ask European Union to investigate origin of Covid-19, likely further straining relations with China
Sweden’s health minister, Lena Hallengren, says an investigation is important to know ‘the origin and spread of the coronavirus’  Sweden’s ties with China are already tense; Stockholm has repeatedly asked for Beijing’s release of bookseller Gui Minhai

More American Firms in China Returning to Business as Usual: Survey
Some 42% of U.S. businesses in China had returned to normal operation by mid-April, up from 22% a month earlier, according to a new survey by the American Chamber of Commerce in China.

Equality key to rescuing US-China business ties: US business lobby
Recent strains in the relationship between the United States and China make it especially important to establish a policy of ‘competitive neutrality’ the American Chamber of Commerce in China said on Thursday.

What next for China’s Huawei with Trump upping the ante and the Covid-19 crisis gripping the world?
In the final instalment of an eight-part series on Huawei, we examine what 2020 may hold for the China telecoms giant as the global health crisis adds to US pressure     Founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei remains optimistic and says pandemic’s impact is driving new demand for digital services and connectivity

China’s smartphone sales decline 22 per cent in first quarter, only Huawei bucks the trend
Smartphone sales in China saw the largest year-on-year decline ever in the first quarter of the year, according to Hong Kong-based research firm Counterpoint     Huawei was the only major smartphone vendor to achieve positive year-on-year growth, with sales dragged down by the coronavirus pandemic

Huawei is the lone winner as China handset sales plunge in Q1
Smartphone sales in China fell 22% in the first quarter as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak, according to a report released Wednesday, with embattled Chinese smartphone maker Huawei the only manufacturer that saw a growth in the quarter. The coronavirus outbreak has accelerated a downward trend in the world’s largest smartphone market.

Alibaba tightens its grip on China’s logistics sector with 2% stake in Yunda
Chinese tech giant Alibaba has acquired a 2% stake in Shenzhen-listed logistics company Yunda Holdings, continuing its push into the logistics industry

As China unleashes big investments, small companies struggle
Alibaba and ExxonMobil speed expansion plans as government lends a hand

What Brands Need to Know Before Livestreaming in China
A virus remedy for luxury brands during recent fashion weeks, can livestreaming extend beyond runways to provide them with a new sales platform?  Five years ago, before Chinese consumers were used to seeing livestreaming hosts with arms full of lipstick colors and shouting “Buy it! Buy it!” and they could “See Now, Buy Now” with a few clicks during the last Shanghai Fashion Week, livestreaming was only a niche tool found deep within the gaming and entertainment industries. But when Chinese e-tailers found out about its ability to drive sales, the tool quickly went mainstream.

China’s largest airlines have biggest slump in earnings since 2008 crisis with industry predicting worse to come
Earnings at Air China, China Southern, China Eastern collapsed last quarter amid pandemic as travel demand evaporated     Hope on Labour Day recovery may be short-term respite as China Southern sees more negative impact in fist half results

COMAC Delivers First ARJ21 From Shanghai Production Line
China’s COMAC has delivered its first ARJ21 from its new production line in Shanghai, ramping up production on the model to meet local demand. The aircraft will fly for the local carrier Chengdu Airlines.

China to impose new cybersecurity rules for networks
China has released new rules requiring companies buying networking products and services to perform cybersecurity evaluations for vulnerabilities that could affect national security.

Coronavirus: South Korea reports zero new local cases for first time since February
The country recorded four new infections on Thursday, all imported cases, taking the national tally to 10,765   A panel also concluded that recovered patients who later test positive for the virus again were not ‘reactivated’, but were false positives

Coronavirus and South Korea: How lives changed to beat the virus
South Korea has recorded its first day with no locally transmitted cases of Covid-19 since the middle of February.

What next for China’s Huawei with Trump upping the ante and the Covid-19 crisis gripping the world?
In the final instalment of an eight-part series on Huawei, we examine what 2020 may hold for the China telecoms giant as the global health crisis adds to US pressure     Founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei remains optimistic and says pandemic’s impact is driving new demand for digital services and connectivity

China’s internet report shows who the winners and losers are during the pandemic
Eight key takeaways from China’s biannual internet roundup, including education and live streaming services getting a big boost while travel and food delivery apps suffer

Coronavirus: China cancels high-profile Boao Forum annual meeting
‘China’s Davos’ formally cancelled after postponement from March in response to international efforts to contain the disease    Other key events, including National People’s Congress and Canton Export Fair, will go ahead with many proceedings online

China’s strict lockdown and closed schools saved rush on hospitals during coronavirus outbreak, researchers say
Study into non-pharmaceutical interventions finds closing schools will not stop all transmission but will reduce admission peak 40-60 per cent    Shanghai and Wuhan households reduced contact with other people 7-8 times, curbing chance of transmission

Coronavirus may lurk deep in lungs after patients recover, study suggests
Postmortem of woman finds she had undetected traces in lungs after testing negative three times and being discharged from hospital   As WHO investigates why some recovered patients test positive again, the medical community works to assess any lasting effect on the body

Opinion: How to Develop a Covid-19 Vaccine That Will Benefit Everyone
Researchers at universities and companies around the world are racing to develop a vaccine. And current progress is encouraging: 73 vaccine candidates are actively being explored or are in preclinical development, while five already have entered clinical trials.

Coronavirus originated in China but was ‘not man-made or genetically modified’, US spy agencies conclude
Trump administration has sharpened his rhetoric on China, accusing it of failing to do act swiftly enough to stop the spread of the virus that causes Covid-19     Scientists say the virus arose naturally in bats. Even so, Pompeo and others have pointed fingers at an institute that is run by the Chinese Academy of Sciences

Don’t relax social distancing in United States before summer, researchers warn
US risks a resurgence in the coronavirus if it eases restrictions sooner, according to new computer modelling     Without a safe vaccine, controlling Covid-19 rests on limiting contact, tracing and testing, team says

Coronavirus: Trump says China wants him to lose re-election
US President Donald Trump has said China “will do anything they can” to make him lose his re-election bid, stepping up his criticism of Beijing amid the coronavirus pandemic

Elon Musk decries ‘fascist’ coronavirus stay-at-home orders putting Tesla’s hot streak at risk
Tesla is worried about being able to resume production in the San Francisco Bay area, where authorities have extended a stay-home order to the end of May    CEO Elon Musk, in an emotive Tesla earnings call, ranted against the orders and said they were ‘not democratic’

Coronavirus should drive businesses to unleash the full value of women’s talent
This means removing barriers for their full participation at work, including work from home that has become the norm amid the pandemic   Research shows that inclusiveness and attention to gender equality raise team performance and do not just contribute to companies’ bottom lines, but also create value for the whole of society

China: Gender Discrimination in Hiring Persists
11 Percent of Civil Service Ads Specify ‘Men Only’ – China’s government should mark International Worker’s Day, May 1, 2020, by ending gender discrimination in its civil service recruitment, Human Rights Watch said today. Chinese law prohibits gender discrimination in hiring, but job discrimination remains a widespread problem in the country.

Hong Kong Waffles on Foreign Correspondent Visas
Cloudy decision allowing China-based foreign correspondents into SAR    As an increasingly uneasy Hong Kong has watched mainland officials dramatically erode the territory’s independence over the past month, the government has issued a murky opinion that appears to eat into the autonomy of the international press working in the city.

Traffic Is Back in Chinese Cities, and Energy Demand Is Rebounding
Traffic is returning to the streets of China’s biggest cities as the nation emerges from a virus-led lockdown, prompting a boost in fuel consumption that’s supporting a recovery in refinery processing rates.

Has anyone seen your health code lately?
China’s ‘health code’ fades as cities return to normal life. As China reopened cities following the Covid-19 epidemic, it relied on “health code” digital systems that divide people into green, yellow, and red based on little understood risk algorithms. Now, as the country moves toward normalcy, local authorities continue to turn the surveillance system off and then on again.

Cooped-Up Beijing Residents Rush to Get Out of Town
Beijing residents can’t wait to get out of their homes during the Labor Day holiday starting May 1 after the Chinese capital reduced the public health emergency response level with the Covid-19 outbreak coming under control.

China’s Travel Firms Brace for Make-or-Break Holiday
Tourism businesses are trying everything to lure visitors ahead of the May Day holiday. But many consumers remain reluctant to travel far.

China’s beleaguered hotels use live-streaming, steep discounts to tempt Labour Day holiday travellers wary of coronavirus
The five-day break starting May 1 will be a key indicator of the extent of the recovery in consumer confidence after much of the country emerged from lockdown    But so-called revenge spending anticipated by many as consumers splash cash after months cooped up may not happen, analysts say

Review | Dying for an iPhone: investigating Apple, Foxconn and the brutal exploitation of Chinese workers
New book examines the human consequences an American smartphone through a Taiwanese company and made by mainland Chinese workers     With many working 29 days a month during which no talking or eating are allowed, some see suicide as the only way out

China on ‘high alert’ as ‘troublemaker’ US patrols South China Sea
Chinese military takes aim at operations by American warships near the Spratly and Paracel islandsUS    says sweeping maritime claims in the area pose a threat to freedom of the seas

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