China Press Review – June 10, 2021

NewsCast Studio which is the biggest reference in broadcast publications, organizes every year ‘Broadcast Production Awards” in the frame of NAB Show. DreamWall is elected once again amongst best designs and productions in its flagship category: “Augmented Reality  & Virtual Reality Design” In the sub category “Sport“, it is the new concept Augmented Reality in Stadiums that won the first price! DreamWall is also rewarded in 3 other subcategories: NewsEntertainent and Virtual Event ( it is the design for Wallonia Exportation Ceremony made by AWEX)   that won the first price!added to another one in “Set design” – corporate“. Wich makes it to 5 Awards!

Joe Biden drops Donald Trump orders seeking to ban TikTok, WeChat
New executive order directs the US Commerce Department to assess the apps associated with foreign adversaries.      The agency is directed to evaluate transactions of software applications that may pose a risk for tech services to operate properly in the US.

China must pursue chip assembly, packaging breakthroughs to catch up with semiconductor leaders, experts say
The stakes are high for China to innovate in chip assembly and packaging amid US efforts to counter that development       The landmark US Innovation and Competition Act identifies China as a major rival to America’s technological dominance

Weak consumption is a ‘major problem’ for China’s recovery, says analytics firm
Data released Wednesday showed a record gap between the speed at which producer prices and consumer prices are rising.    “The major problem has been that the consumer’s not all the way back,” says Leland Miller, CEO of China Beige Book, a U.S.-based independent data and analytics firm.

Has Tesla Lost Its Luxury Social Status in China?
Tesla’s success has inspired local companies to expedite EV rollouts, thus encouraging consumers to adapt to the new EV trend, which is now seeing explosive growth in China.    Security concerns, negative press, and delays plus a host of other issues threaten the US company’s role as an innovator in the market.     Tesla faces stiff competition from domestic Chinese EV car brands like leader Nio, as well as Xiaopeng, Geely, and Wuling who are targeting a younger demographic.

China gets tough on financial sector risk management, extends contingency planning to more institutions
Contingency planning has been a requirement for China’s biggest financial institutions for a decade now   Recovery, contingency planning conducive to shoring up risk awareness and crisis management capacity, CBIRC says

China’s millennials bet on cryptocurrencies in hopes of reaching upper middle class
Speculation in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies is increasingly popular among young adults in China as way to get ahead, and maybe buy a home    Even with cryptocurrency trading illegal in China, people are using the internet to buy and sell cryptocurrencies with high risk, but potential for high rewards

China’s Qinghai Province Has Ordered All Crypto Miners to Shut Down
China’s Qinghai province has announced a ban on virtual currency mining operations, a government document said Wednesday.     Qinghai is the latest coal-based crypto mining hub that is set to completely eliminate the industry. The news came on the heels of another crackdown notice against some crypto miners in Xinjiang and follows Inner Mongolia, which had previously imposed restrictions on miners.   China’s dominant internet search engine Baidu and microblogging platform Weibo also censored searches for three major cryptocurrency exchanges

China weighs price caps on coal as supply shortage sends energy prices soaring
Chinese authorities are exploring ways to control surging energy costs, including by capping coal prices     An unusually hot start to summer and a ban on Australian coal are driving up coal prices and causing blackouts

G-7 must use chance to reboot its approach to China
No major global dilemma can be solved without Beijing’s involvement   Yes, I know. G-7 communiques are often worth less than the paper they are printed on. But the arrival of multilateralist U.S. President Joe Biden on the global scene makes Friday’s proceedings particularly uncomfortable for Xi’s government, which had been enjoying a free ride in recent years.   On the one hand, Biden is not countering China with bombastic tweets and Trumpian bluster. He is rebuilding economic muscle at home to increase competitiveness. The bill the Senate passed this week is but a down payment on Biden’s pledge both to up America’s innovative game and rebuild the economy “from the bottom up and the middle out.” Xi seems to realize China has quite the image problem. Its wolf warrior diplomacy is just Trumpism with Chinese characteristics. Now Xi’s team claims to be pivoting to a “let’s be lovable” crouch. Yet Xi would be mistaken to think the G-7 is in a loving mood. China likes to tell the world to stay out of its “internal affairs.” News out of Cornwall will be a rude reminder that when you are the No. 2 economy and produce more than your fair share of pan

EU and US to discuss China in multiple summits
Starting this Friday, European leaders will meet with President Joe Biden during a number of high level in-person summits. The following is a list of key meetings and their expected impact on China.
June 11-13 – G7 summit in Cornwall. Leaders from Australia, India, South Africa and South Korea are expected to join. The participants are expected to launch the Green Clean Initiative (GCI), an alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative. The EU leaders will be in a good position to discuss GCI. Just two days before the summit, the European Parliament is expected to vote on a near to EUR 80 billion Global Europe fund – a unified, main instrument of the EU’s external policy.  June 14 – NATO summit in Brussels. China will likely be high on the agenda with NATO exploring a role of a “political-military alliance” tackling “an authoritarian pushback against the rules-based international order.”  Yet members may find it hard to reach a general consensus on how to approach China. A likely outcome will be alignment in cyber and security. June 15 – EU-US summit in Brussels. The two sides are expected to launch the Trade and Technology Council, initially proposed by the European Commission in December 2020. The Council will act as a common front on reforming the economic system and tech standards that are being redefined by China.   Transatlantic cooperation on China is likely to develop gradually. The EU and the US could start with technical cooperation on concrete policies through the Trade and Technology Council or GCL. The more granular-level cooperation can help develop a wider consensus on China and at the same time resolve outstanding issues in their own bilateral relations. The technical, gradual approach could mitigate the fact that from a political angle, a level of divergence on China remains. While the American administration focuses on confronting China as a geopolitical and systemic rival, the EU acknowledges the challenges but seeks to respond to it with a low-key, technocratic approach that will limit disruptions in economic relations with China.

China hurried work on anti-sanctions law ‘after Joe Biden disappointed Beijing by continuing to take a tough stance’
Government advisers say the plans were accelerated after the US President dashed hopes he would take a softer approach than Donald Trump     Sources say discussions about the law started last year, but progress had initially been slow while Beijing waited to see what the new administration would do

US, China hold third trade talk in 2 weeks with ‘candid, pragmatic exchange of views’
China’s Commerce Minister Wang Wentao spoke with his American counterpart Gina Raimondo on Thursday    It follows similar discussions between Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He and both US Trade Representative Katherine Tai and as US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen

Avoiding pitfalls in the EU’s Indo-Pacific strategy
Implementing Europe’s strategy for a stronger ‘strategic focus, presence and action’ in the Indo-Pacific will be difficult. EU policymakers face the herculean task of identifying core areas where the bloc can make a difference in the region while avoiding those where EU engagement would do more harm than good.

EU-China economic relations are set to grow
EU-China economic relations recover following the uncertainty brought about by the pandemic, while European companies are planning to expand their operations within the Chinese market.   While the EU-China politics have grown colder over the last year, the economic ties show no sign of cooling. This runs counter to some of the political discussions about the need for offshoring or decoupling from China. The prevailing economic link that European companies seek to strengthen is likely to remain a strong consideration for the European capitals that want to limit political tensions and reduce the number of disruptions for European businesses in China.

China passes anti-sanctions law, providing means to counter foreign measures
Legislation passed at the closing session of the National People’s Congress Standing CommitteeThere have been concerns over the potential impact on businesses, with details of the law yet to be released

Breakthrough on the EU International Procurement Instrument
On June 2, the Council endorsed negotiations with the European Parliament on the creation of the International Procurement Instrument (IPI). Once implemented, the instrument could have a significant impact on China’s access to European public procurement bids.    As the EU progresses in the development of its defensive toolbox, China is also strengthening its legal defenses against external instruments. For example, Beijing is in the process of developing its first anti-foreign sanctions law, presently being discussed by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress. Although it is primarily being considered in the context of the United States’ activity, the instrument is indicative of wider a trend of China wanting to shield itself from external legal measures. When developed, the EU’s new instruments such as the anti-subsidy law, IPI or the due diligence mechanism could fall into the category of measures that Beijing will seek to contain through its legal instruments.

Across China, AI ‘city brains’ are changing how the government runs
Authorities at all levels are now using them for everything from pandemic control to monitoring illegal public assemblies    While there are benefits, including anti-corruption features, there are also concerns over privacy and data security

Can China use artificial intelligence to perfect central planning?
Artificial intelligence tends to do a good job of filling in gaps in information. It’s much less skilled at, say, predicting the direction of an economy. Even if sufficient data were available, it’s difficult for a computer to spot unforeseen disruptions. “Someone might behave in a way that messes up your prediction,” said Prof. Goldfarb. “In which case, your predictions won’t come true.”  Although some financial institutions have begun to use machine learning for forecasts, “it’s not clear to me that there’s any real advantage to a machine-learning tool versus a classical statistics tool,” he said.   Artificial intelligence may be better used in other ways, he said, such as for tools that can largely automate the calculation of income taxes or better identify recipients for s state benefits. But “that’s going to be true in Canada as well as China.”

Pentagon makes China its top policy priority with several new classified programs
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday directed the Pentagon to place China and its military buildup at the center of American defense policy.    Austin’s directive comes as the Biden administration and lawmakers in both parties ramp up initiatives to counter China’s international ambitions, from economic and trade policy to security concerns.     Through this new directive, the Pentagon will assess U.S. alliances and partnerships, deterrence, operational concepts, emerging capabilities, future force posture, technology and civilian and military workforce.

How US belligerence is driving China and Russia closer together
Biden has been proclaiming that his trip to Europe is aimed at promoting an ‘alternative to China’ while confronting the ‘harmful activities’ of Beijing and Moscow     In response, China and Russia are strengthening ties and seeking to safeguard core interests  In the first five months of 2021, Russia-China trade grew 23.6 per cent year on year, after having fallen 2.9 per cent in 2020 to US$107.8 billion. China’s post-pandemic recovery is flowing smoothly, while Russia is lagging behind. For the 2024 trade milestone to be achieved, Moscow needs to revive its economy.

China’s Diplomacy Is Limiting Its Own Ambitions
Beijing’s self-imposed problems make it a less threatening challenger than it seems U.S. policymakers consider China’s resurgence to be the greatest test yet posed by a rival nation-state to the United States’ security and prosperity. The White House’s Interim National Security Strategic Guidance concludes Beijing “is the only competitor potentially capable of combining its economic, diplomatic, military, and technological power to mount a sustained challenge to a stable and open international system.” All four of those dimensions of power have grown in the last year. China is more central to the global economy than it was at the outset of the coronavirus pandemic in late 2019, and the International Monetary Fund projects it will grow 8.4 percent this year and 5.6 percent in 2022, compared to 6.4 percent and 3.5 percent respectively for the United States. By deepening its sway within core postwar institutions, such as the United Nations, and pursuing extra-system efforts, such as the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), it is increasingly shaping both the architecture and the norms of global governance.With many of China’s key bilateral relationships facing headwinds, democratic coalitions are mobilizing more actively. The Quadrilateral Security Dialogue arguably has more momentum than at any other point since its inception. NATO has grown more pointed in its criticisms of Beijing, with Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg calling it “a power that doesn’t share our values” in late March. G-7 foreign ministers issued a statement in early May expressing concern about China’s repression in Xinjiang and Tibet, its erosion of Hong Kong’s democracy, and its coercive economic practices. In an unprecedented step, Canada, the European Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States announced coordinated sanctions in March in response to China’s mass internment of Uyghur Muslims

EU leaders call for ‘complete access’ from China for full Covid-19 origins investigation
Bloc adds its weight to push for examination of theory that the virus escaped from a lab in Wuhan      The world has a right to know exactly what happened, EU Council chief says

Can China become a soccer superpower?
With Xi Jinping’s encouragement, China has poured billions into new fields and lavish player and coach salaries, but has little to show for it

Why it is no longer cool to be a crazy rich Asian in China
For years, China’s glamorous rich have been known to be ostentatious, showing off their luxury cars and handbags online – often to the envy of their followers.   But increasingly, any kind of wealth flaunting – intentional or otherwise – is being met with hostility and disdain.

Alain Gillard
Information Officer
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