China Press Review – January 17, 2019

Press review

Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He to hold trade talks in Washington on January 30-31
Confirmation of top-level talks comes after positive negotiations in Beijing last week

Huawei is target of US criminal probe into alleged theft of trade secrets from American firms including T-Mobile
The probe was said to have been prompted by civil suits against Huawei, including a 2017 ruling that it was liable for the theft of T-Mobile robotic technology

US lawmakers seek to ban chip sales to China’s Huawei and ZTE for ‘violating American sanctions’
The bipartisan bills target firms supposedly in breach of US sanctions, and specifically cite Huawei and ZTE Republican Senator Tom Cotton branded Huawei ‘an intelligence-gathering arm of the Chinese Communist Party’

China says US claims it uses forced technology transfer to boost military are ‘absurd’
Beijing dismisses ‘unprofessional’ Pentagon report that said it was forcing foreign firms to hand over technology that was used to improve military capacity Chinese analysts insist country is still lagging behind US in many areas

Germany’s China Problem
Berlin is walking a thin line between its strongest ally and its biggest trading partner.

Beijing redoubles efforts to quell fears about state of the Chinese economy as bad news piles up
China’s economic ministries line up to send message of confidence to the public Efforts come at a time when slowdown is deepening in the world’s No 2 economy

China quietly cuts borrowing costs while keeping rates on hold
The PBOC has been quietly guiding interbank borrowing costs down without actually cutting official interest rates The latest move is a record one-day injection of 560 billion yuan in cash into the market

In China, Prudence Is a Virtue (for Now)
The bit-by-bit approach to burnishing growth gives fiscal policy a shot. In a welcome move, the central bank opts for more discretion than valor.

China Premier Li Keqiang invites harsh words on economy from private sector top brass
Premier Li listens to liberal economists and private business delegates for feedback on his government work report
Li’s hearing came as China economy faces big challenges in 2019 Why the euro zone is a bigger worry than China’s economic slowdown

China’s economic outlook for 2019
This is a four-part series focusing on the outlook for major economies in 2019. In our third installment, NHK World’s business reporter Marie Yanaka spoke with an economist about what to expect from China.

China Is Turning Into Its Own Worst Economic Enemy
Beijing has hamstrung future growth with misguided policies.

Why the euro zone is a bigger worry than China’s economic slowdown
Nicholas Spiro says anxiety about a global slowdown is building in Germany and across Europe. Yet, when Beijing is taking measures to support the Chinese economy, the European Central Bank is unwisely tightening policy

podcast : China ‘Gradually Stimulating’ Economy, Says HSBC’s Laidler
Ben Laidler, HSBC global equity strategist, and Christopher Wolfe, First Republic private wealth management chief investment officer, discuss Huawei, growth in China, and U.S.-China trade tensions on “Bloomberg Daybreak: America

Beijing finally shows the market some respect
Even a partial retreat from constant interference is good news for investors

China pushes for bonds to be included in global indices even as some foreign investors seek delay
China deputy central bank governor says mechanism ready for investors to put money into China bonds But some foreign investors say their back room systems not ready, want to delay inclusion China bonds in major global indices

China to help plug UK nuclear power gap as Japanese plans falter
China’s General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN) will bring forward plans to build a nuclear plant in Britain, it said on Thursday, helping plug a gap left by the failure of two Japanese projects.

Hong Kong’s construction rush: critical infrastructure or white elephants with political agenda?
Two mega projects, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge and Guangzhou-Shenzhen-Hong Kong Express Rail Link, opened last year, and six more are on the way. But how much does the city need them?

Shenzhen’s new bankruptcy court could track assets transferred to Hong Kong
New bankruptcy court created in Shenzhen will handle ‘cross-border’ cases The court is the latest in a series of moves to create judicial ties between the mainland and Hong Kong

Microsoft to launch its biggest AI, IoT lab in Shanghai
Microsoft plans to open its biggest artificial intelligence and internet of things lab in Shanghai, aiming to launch a smart platform for Chinese businesses in sectors varying from manufacturing to healthcare.

Nike, Apple, Amazon among top firms named by China for ‘misidentifying’ Taiwan
Dozens of transnational companies accused of violating Chinese law Taipei condemns Beijing report as latest effort to pressure self-ruled island into unification talks

Smartphones overtake shopping centres as a popular way to shop
Smartphones have for the first time overtaken shopping centres as a popular way to shop, figures show. Shoppers are planning to spend £25 billion using their smartphones this year in what will be a £10 billion rise on 2018, switching firm Uswitch found.

Is China’s Hottest Video App, Douyin, the New WeChat for Luxury?
Douyin, a hip short video app that is popular among China’s young social media users, has hit the radar of luxury marketers.

China Slowdown a Bigger Concern Than Trade War for Luxury Markets: BCG
Global consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG) said on Tuesday that the potential slowdown in Chinese demand for luxury goods would be vital in determining the trajectory of the global luxury goods market in the medium term.

Evergrande Health acquires majority stake in electric car maker NEVS
Evergrande Health has purchased a 51% stake in electric vehicle manufacturer National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS), marking its second foray into the electric car industry. The $930 million deal saw the company pay $430 million on Tuesday with the balance due by the end of the month. NEVS is Chinese consortium is owned by the municipal government of Tianjin—a city in northern China, among others.

British Lotus cars to be ‘Made in China’ at new Geely plant
The Chinese owner of Lotus plans to start producing the British sports car brand in China for the first time with the opening of a new 9 billion yuan (US$1.3 billion) factory in Wuhan city, company job advertisements and government documents showed. The previously unreported plans are Zhejiang Geely Holding Group’s first move to shake up the British brand since its purchase of a majority stake in 2017.

Why are the Chinese buying fewer cars?
China’s car industry is also a key driver of industrial output and a barometer of consumer demand. But growth in China’s economy is slowing, and the trade war with the US is starting to bite. Retail sales have slowed to a pace not seen for more than a decade.

China’s push for technology self-reliance faces reality check, says economist
Large number of key component suppliers to Chinese tech companies are foreign, says Shaun Roache, Asia-Pacific chief economist at S&P Global Ratings

Global cosmetics giants push deeper into personal care with niche brand acquisitions, eye e-commerce
Analysts say there is a trend among big beauty firms to consolidate numerous brands under their wings and move away from a single-brand model

China accounted for half of all mobile app downloads in 2018
In 2018, China accounted for nearly half of all app downloads for mobile devices and nearly 40% of worldwide consumer spending on apps, according to the latest State of Mobile report by research firm App Annie. Global app downloads reached a record 194 billion last year with consumers spending a total of $101 billion on them.

podcast : China Tech Talk 70: WeChat vs TikTok: China’s Stories
China Tech Talk is an almost weekly discussion of the most important issues in China’s tech. From IPOs to fake data, from the role of WeChat to Apple’s waning influence, hosts John Artman and Matthew Brennan interview experts and discuss the trends shaping China’s tech industry.

How Chinese sellers of fake Dior are evading a crackdown by going online
Skill of the counterfeiters and their growing ability to leverage global social networks has left Beijing playing whack-a-mole as it tries to stamp out fake luxury goods

Chinese firm completes US$1.4 billion land reclamation works for Sri Lanka’s Colombo Port City project
The project was agreed between China and Sri Lanka’s former president Mahinda Rajapaksa, one of several to raise fears that the strategically important island had become unduly influenced by Beijing

Pentagon warns of global power play behind Chinese projects such as Belt and Road Initiative
US Defence Department highlights range of military and non-military challenges to US strategic interests from Beijing’s favoured projects

Beijing, almost a million pigs killed in African swine fever outbreak
The epidemic spreads due to the hygienic conditions in which the animals are kept. The virus is not harmful to humans, but it is deadly to pigs. The Chinese are the world’s largest pork consumers. At present the country is forced to import pork from abroad. Fears also in Hong Kong, Macao, Taiwan.

Canada summons Chinese ambassador over interrogation of Michael Kovrig
Beijing must deport detained former diplomat or request a waiver of his diplomatic immunity, Ottawa tells Lu Shaye

U.S. Universities Shut Down Confucius Institutes
Amid rising concerns of curtailed academic freedoms, U.S. universities are increasingly closing down Confucius Institutes, which are Chinese government-funded centers offering Mandarin-language and cultural courses that at one point numbered over 100 in North America alone. S

China’s first lunar leaf dies after Chang’e scientists forced to cut power to stop battery running low
Cotton seed that became first plant to come to life on the surface of the moon dies after being exposed to far side’s extreme temperatures Lander did not carry any spare batteries, so power to biosphere had to be cut off

China’s Hukou System: What it is and How it Works
However, some criticize China’s hukou system, stating that it prevents the free flow of labor, creates idle capacity, and results in economic losses. In recent years, the Chinese government has pursued patchwork reforms of the hukou system to respond to these criticisms. In this article, we look at how the hukou system works in China, and why employers should seek to understand them.

DNA and the Globalization of Humanity
DNA analysis sheds light elsewhere on discussions on unsettled historical issues having to do with the ideas of “sameness” and “otherness.” In China, there is a vociferous group that insists on the “purity” of Chineseness. Yet, DNA-based genetic anthropology illustrates a close tie between Mainland Chinese and population groups in Southeast Asia as well as the Pacific islands. DNA data also confirm interactions between Han and non-Han groups by delineating the migration routes of Han people and their mixing with various regional natives, especially in south and southwest China. The genetic traits of northern and northwestern nomadic peoples have also been identified in the test results of many Han Chinese.

Repression in China at worst level since Tiananmen Square, HRW warns
In annual report, Human Rights Watch highlights situation under President Xi Jinping as one of biggest global setbacks to human rights in 2018

China’s leaders must learn from Soviet Union’s fatal mistakes, says heavyweight communist liberal Hu Deping
Hu Deping, son of late party General Secretary Hu Yaobang – whose 1989 death ultimately led to the Tiananmen Square crackdown – says China must stick to reform Speech to seminar on reform and opening up warns China to avoid Soviet errors such as centralising power and rigid planned economy

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