China Press Review – January 11, 2019

Press review

China to set lower GDP growth target of 6-6.5 percent in 2019 – sources
China plans to set a lower economic growth target of 6-6.5 percent in 2019 compared with last year’s target of “around” 6.5 percent, policy sources told Reuters, as Beijing gears up to cope with higher U.S. tariffs and weakening domestic demand.

China to cut company tax and fees further to spur growth: minister
China will cut company taxes and fees further this year to support economic growth, Finance Minister Liu Kun told state television in an interview aired on Friday.

China’s vice-premier Liu He ‘likely’ to visit Washington at end of January to continue trade war talks
US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin expects China’s top trade negotiator to visit the United States following this week’s talks with mid-level officials in Beijing American President Donald Trump said the United States was having ‘tremendous success in its trade negotiations with China

The trade war and China’s slowing growth are crimping American companies’ sales, from Jaguar to Macy’s
The main industries being hammered by the gloom are airlines, cars, banking, retail, technology and industrials

Trump is winning the trade battle with China, but China could still win the war
China’s economy has taken a beating in recent weeks amid the US-China trade war. And it may get worse. “So far, the trade war has had a much bigger impact on Chinese growth than US growth,” Bank of America Merrill Lynch says. But Beijing has been throwing all available stimulus options at its economy, and it’s just getting started. US corporates are feeling the pinch. And longer term, the US is losing its economic dominance.

Donald Trump won’t be at Davos, but trade talks expected to go on without him
US president has cancelled his trip to the World Economic Forum, where he had been tipped to hold a meeting with Wang Qishan Analysts say negotiations are on track and there could be more exchanges between the two sides in Switzerland

A trust not trade deficit lies at the core of US-China tech tensions
It’s been 189 days and we’ve still seen no substantive progress in the so-called trade-war between the US and China. However, even if a deal is reached, and no matter how satisfying it may be for both sides, it will still not be able to solve a fundamental problem between the two superpowers—or indeed between China and the West. The two countries have assumptions about the world that are fundamentally different, including varying ideas about the role of the state.

Forbes CommunityVoice Connecting expert communities to the Forbes audience.What is This?
Even with all the trade-related concerns, businesses are still attracted to China for its 1.3 billion consumers, cost of manufacturing and burgeoning middle class. With all that is attractive about doing business in China, over the past 10 years I have also found a wide range of idiosyncrasies, cultural differences and political realities that I wish I knew how to navigate before I started.

Is the US right to cry foul about forced technology transfer to do business in China – and what is Beijing’s position?
Foreign companies’ concerns about having to share their tech secrets are among the matters being discussed in ongoing US-China trade talks Beijing’s draft foreign investment law could legislate against the practice, but businesses are sceptical about enforcement

Trade deal won’t get done without action on forced tech transfers, US Chamber of Commerce lobbyist Myron Brilliant says
Brilliant says China must enforce protections for US companies or ‘there isn’t going to be any final deal’ Spokesman for China’s commerce ministry acknowledges that ‘structural issues’ are ‘an important part of these talks’

Tracking Trump’s tangled trade war tweets
Understanding political narratives is not always easy. Events often develop with many twists and turns but situations can be further exacerbated when politicians are seen to change their minds as often as the wind changes direction. The following is a visual thread of comments made by US President Donald Trump about the trade war with China.

China’s joining could ease tensions with the US, accelerate growth, diversify markets and modernise the country. What’s not to like?

Chinese investors ‘facing severe situation in the US’
Rating of US as investment destination for Chinese firms falls 10 places to 14th out of 57 countries rated Chinese government think tank now sees US investment environment as on par with Russia and Poland

China’s economy shows more signs of running out of gas
Beijing pins its hopes on trade war solution amid optimistic signs from the US as economic slowdown continues

China is at a crossroads: Limits of its Party-led model are showing
Four decades ago the Chinese Communist Party, under its new paramount leader Deng Xiaoping, decided to subordinate ideology to wealth creation, spawning a new aphorism, “To get rich is glorious.” The party’s central committee, disavowing Mao Zedong’s thought as dogma, embraced a principle that became Deng’s oft-quoted dictum, “Seek truth from facts.”

China faces tidal wave of exits by ageing tycoons. Their succession plans will shape China’s future
Huge leadership change coming for private companies, but many hard-charging offspring are looking beyond the family business Chinese tycoons less likely to have handover plans in place than global peers

Emerging industries have transformed Nansha, the pearl of the Greater Bay Area
Besides outstanding development in artificial intelligence sector, taking abundant land resources and gorgeous supportive measures granted by its Free Trade Zone status, Nansha now is becoming a new powerhouse in the Greater Bay Area for emerging tech and innovation industries.

China’s securities firms suffer a miserable 2018 amid slumping stock market, but analysts expect a better year ahead
The 27 main listed brokerages see combined net profit plunge 43 per cent as stock market slump, sluggish trading, and shrinking IPO business take a toll

Everything’s a Buy in China as Bulls Snap Up Yuan, Stocks, Bonds
What’s certain is that all the reasons to be bearish on the yuan are still there: China’s economy is weakening and the central bank is in easing mode.

China promotes use of yuan among Southeast Asian nations
China published a five-year blueprint on Friday seeking economic and financial integration between southern Guangxi province and Southeast Asia, representing Beijing’s latest effort to promote international use of the yuan currency.

Chinese lander Chang’e 4 sends big picture of the moon’s far side as science payloads begin work
Mission gets real for lander’s Swedish, German, Dutch and Russian devices US and China scientists wait to see fruits of their joint labours arrive from moon

Starbucks will be next US brand to warn of China trouble after Apple, Goldman Sachs says
Goldman Sachs downgraded Starbucks to neutral from buy, citing China concerns. The firm also lowered its price target on Starbucks to $68 from $75. Goldman downgraded Yum to sell on Friday as well.

Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun silent on US expansion plan amid trade war, focuses on European markets
Shift in focus reflects how the US-China trade war has knocked the wind out of the Chinese hi-tech industry’s sails

China prepares to issue temporary 5G licenses to operators
Miao Wei, head of China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), said on Thursday the government body would this year grant a batch of temporary 5G licenses to mobile operators in numerous Chinese cities, highlighting the country’s intensified efforts to commercialize 5G technology.

Helen Feng, a Woman “Made in China”
61% Chinese companies have at least one woman among the board of directors, in the US only 34%. Helen Feng, Nova Heart’s frontwoman, is the symbol of powerful women “Made in China” who are striving to change the country and the whole world

Retailers are slashing iPhone prices across China as consumers say the phones aren’t worth the cost
Apple’s latest iPhone models are seeing huge discounts from retailers in China. The technology giant recently revised its first quarter sales forecast downward, putting a large part of the blame on a slowdown in the Chinese market. Experts said a mixture of a poor pricing strategy and a lack of exciting features compared to local rivals like Huawei has led to the newest iPhones’ weak performance in China.

Alibaba’s cloud computing arm this week launched its second data center in Indonesia in response to surging customer demand.

Alibaba on Friday unveiled the “A100 Strategic Partnership”, a program to help key brands accelerate their own digital transformation through a new service package that rolls all of the tools available on the Alibaba ecosystem into one.

Alibaba launches ‘A100’ initiative to drive its evolution into a global enterprise tech provider
The programme will initially involve companies, such as major brands and merchants, that are partners in Alibaba’s ecosystem

VW, China spearhead $300 billion global drive to electrify cars
Global automakers are planning a $300 billion surge in spending on electric vehicle technology over the next five to 10 years, with nearly half of the money targeted at China, accelerating the industry’s transition from fossil fuels and shifting power to Asian battery and electric vehicle technology suppliers.

Has Geely cut its holding in Daimler? The Chinese carmaker says ‘no’
Geely Auto Group, one of China’s most successful carmakers, said its holding in Daimler remained unchanged, refuting a Bloomberg report that said it had cut its 9.7 per cent stake in the German carmaker by more than half.

China’s Ctrip faces turbulence in journey to the top
Online travel giant forced to fend off rising tech rivals in uncertain economic times

Why China’s Young Doctors Want Out of the System
Low pay, long hours, and conflict with patients are pushing once-idealistic medics out of public hospitals.

‘Chinese, Polish nationals’ arrested in Poland for ‘spying’
Huawei has repeatedly been accused of being a proxy for the Chinese government, a claim it denies
Polish security services have arrested a Chinese national and Polish man for spying, according to local media.

China voices ‘grave concerns’ over Poland’s arrest of Huawei sales director on spying charges
Employee of Chinese tech company’s Polish operations could face up to a decade in jail if convicted, report says

More troubles for Huawei over spying allegations in Poland
The telecom giant has its European headquarters in Poland. The United Kingdom, Germany and France are putting on hold Huawei technologies over allegations of links with China’s secret services. Companies linked to Huawei are said to have violated the embargo against Iran and Syria.

ADB chief hails China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative
President of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) Takehiko Nakao on Friday welcomed the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), saying that it is nice to build connectivity between countries through the initiative. “Together with other development banks like the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, we have a memorandum of understanding for cooperation with the Belt and Road Initiative,”

Podcast China’s Digital Silk Road
Bloomberg’s Carol Massar and Lisa Abramowicz discuss digital inroads China is making globally and its possible cultural implications.

Don’t be distracted by China – Asia, on the whole, is the real powerhouse, says strategist
The West needs to view Asia as the economic powerhouse – not just China, writes strategist Parag Khanna in his new book The phrase ‘China-led Asia’ is no more acceptable to most Asians than the notion of a ‘US-led West’ is to Europeans

Last year saw the two countries repair their relations after the deep freeze caused by the 2017 Doklam stand-off But while they are growing closer, it is increasingly obvious they have different priorities – particularly where the US is concerned

China’s Sinosure: It’s Back and It Wants Your First Born
But what about Sinosure wanting your first born? Is that a real thing? Of course it’s not; that was just for effect. Well, sort of. I say “sort of” because we have been hearing of late that Sinosure is threatening to go after American business owners personally. Can Sinosure do that? Probably not, but maybe. That Sinosure has apparently now added this threat to its arsenal is troubling nonetheless. Sinosure is tough and relentless and a big problem and that problem is growing.

China’s 1MDB Bailout Offer Raises BRI Concerns
The Wall Street Journal has discovered that in 2016, China offered Malaysia bailouts and surveillance of Hong Kong journalists to alleviate the ongoing scandal surrounding its 1 Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) fund. The fund was created in 2009 by then-Prime Minister Najib Razak, involved an alleged $4.5 billion of misappropriated funds flowing across multiple countries, and prompted probes in at least 10 countries. Through reviewing meeting minutes and interviews, Tom Wright and Bradley Hope report on how Beijing’s assistance was contingent upon advancing its Belt and Road Initiative:

Even as Taiwan perfects its democracy, China is sabotaging it
Voters decide on everything except the thing that really matters

Will China Change Its Fundamental Business Practices? Probably Not.

Keeping China–US cyber conflict off the cards
Cyber relations between China and the United States have always been an integral part of the bilateral relationship. As debate on whether the two countries are entering a new Cold War intensifies, similar concerns about their cyber relations are arising: are the two destined for rivalry in the cybersphere? If so, how can cyber conflict be prevented or limited?

New report raises questions about World Bank lending to China
Most World Bank lending to China aligns with the bank’s existing policy on how it lends to wealthier countries — but some lending doesn’t, according to a new report from the Center for Global Development.“As we assessed the whole portfolio, big buckets made sense, but there were gaps — projects not supporting western China or to low-income provinces.”

China’s New Year’s Gala as old as the Qing dynasty? Forbidden City discovery lifts curtain on imperial celebrations
Staff at Palace Museum discover 260-year-old opera programmes during renovation Exhibits reveal casts and songs for event in 24th year of Qianlong’s reign

Five Most Typecast Chinese Actors
Besides unoriginal plots and characters, some Chinese shows even reuse actors

How Will China’s New Online Video Censorship Affect Luxury Brands?
China’s new censorship regulations may impact how luxury brands use short-video apps to market their products. I It’s difficult enough for foreign brands to produce successful marketing campaigns in China – there’s a long list of brands that have stumbled and/or caused offense in the country. Now, with the Chinese government’s new guidelines for censoring short videos on popular social apps like Douyin and Kuaishou, luxury brands may have to re-evaluate their marketing content.

China pledges easier access to Tibet for foreign tourists after US pressure
Visitor numbers to increase while waiting times for permits will be halved
Announcement comes weeks after new US law demanding easier access for American officials and journalists

Alain Gillard
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