China Press Review – November 25, 2019

Press review

China says will strive to reach a “Phase One” trade deal with the US
In a bid to reignite hopes of an almost castrated Sino-US trade deal following Beijing’s stringent pushes on a warding off of the US tariffs alongside US Senate’s latest bill to press China further to ice a blazing Hong Kong over a free democracy, Chinese Commerce Ministry had said in a statement on Thursday (November 21st) that Beijing would push through to the bottom to reach an interim trade accord with Washington, as negotiators from both sides had been keeping their communication channel open
US official says China trade deal possible but Trump won’t ignore Hong Kong
Robert O’Brien’s comments add to growing worries Chinese crackdown on protests could complicate efforts to end trade war

A ‘phase two’ US-China deal looks less likely as Washington and Beijing struggle on ‘phase one’
The second phase would focus on a key U.S. complaint that China effectively steals U.S. intellectual property by forcing U.S. companies to transfer their technology to Chinese rivals, Trump said in October.     But the November 2020 U.S. presidential election, the difficulties in getting the first-stage done, combined with the White House’s reluctance to work with other countries to pressure Beijing are dimming hopes for anything more ambitious in the near future, the sources said.   “It’s Trump who wants to sign these deals, not us. We can wait,” one Chinese official told Reuters.

Global capital seeks to ‘act locally’ in 2020 as US-China trade conflict raises investment uncertainties: survey
Investors look for businesses relying on domestic revenues next year in a shift to avoid international headwinds   ‘Companies focused on consumer spending are less impacted by geopolitical uncertainty,’ analyst says
Trade war threatens tech sectors in China, Silicon Valley
While the U.S-China trade war rages on, the tensions are exposing growing rifts between China and Silicon Valley.    Leading venture capitalists and startup founders expressed concern over their governments’ fierce differences and the potential fallout. Among the dangers are a decline in cross-border investment, disruption in the supply chain and decreased collaboration in fields like artificial intelligence, wireless technology and cancer research.
China isn’t gaming global trade through its industrial polices or ‘unique’ economic model – the problem is out-of-date WTO rules
There’s a myth that says China got a pass into the WTO, and has used state-owned enterprises to break the rules ever since. But those rules were written before the digital age, and perhaps the state role in the market needs to be reconsidered

China to raise penalties on IP theft in trade war compromise
Beijing will also look into lowering the thresholds for criminal punishments for those who steal IP

IMF chief: China’s economic health important to world
China has been a major growth engine for the world economy, and its economic health bears global significance, International Monetary Fund (IMF) Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva told Xinhua in a recent interview.     The world economy is on track to register the lowest growth over the last decade, and China’s growth rate, though slowing, is still within the target range, said Georgieva, who paid her first visit to China as IMF chief this week.

How To Fight Back Against Fake Goods In China Trade Shows
For all the talk about improvements in China’s intellectual property protection, many importers are still facing very unethical behavior from their supplier base. And nowhere is it more apparent than in trade shows. The temptation for suppliers to show a customer’s innovative product is often too strong.     So, how to fight back against fake goods in China trade shows?

Trump’s trade war is hurting China’s economy, but it’s giving Beijing an opportunity it never dreamed of
President Donald Trump says China is desperate to end its trade war with the US, but while China’s economy is slowing, policymakers aren’t acting desperate.   There’s evidence to suggest that China would rather go toe to toe with the US on trade than deal with it on more pressing domestic issues — such as Xinjiang and Hong Kong.   “The Chinese are not trying to win,” Leland Miller, the founder of Chinese business and economic survey “China Beige Book,” told Business Insider. “They’re trying to stall so they get the best scenario they can across the board.”    Trump’s laser focus on getting a deal — instead of scaring the Chinese — is giving them an opportunity to accomplish other goals without US interference

China’s rising prices, driven by pork crisis, leaving a bad taste in the mouths of Chinese consumers, businesses
China’s consumer price index jumped to 3.8 per cent in October, the highest since January 2012, driven by the price of pork doubling from a year earlier   Businesses are on the verge of closing, while the make-up of the Chinese dinner table is changing, after African swine fever destroyed the pig population
China revises up 2018 GDP after new census, making it easier to double size of economy in 2020
The National Bureau of Statistics has revised up its 2018 GDP by 2.1 per cent to 91.93 trillion yuan (US$13.1 trillion)   Upwards revision makes it easier for China to reach goal of doubling the size of its economy between 2010 and 2020 with a lower growth rate next year

China plans record sale of dollar bonds worth US$6 billion
Ministry of Finance is considering tenors of three years, five years, 10 years and 20 years, said sources   Chinese borrowers have issued US$195 billion of dollar bonds so far this year, just shy of the US$211 billion record set in 2017

China can go carbon neutral by 2050 while still growing its economy: report
China won’t have to sacrifice economic growth or prosperity to go carbon neutral in the next few decades, according to a new report.   The country could triple its economic output per person by 2050 while still reducing its carbon footprint, the Energy Transitions Commission said in the report, published on Friday in partnership with the Rocky Mountain Institute.
Hong Kong, mainland Chinese companies more willing to disclose climate change risks, non-profit says
Increase in reporting down to growing awareness about the need to measure and manage environmental footprint, CDP says    But there is not enough disclosure of climate risk exposure, mitigation and adaptation plans, CLSA says

Taobao villages driving ‘inclusive growth’ in rural China
Out of the fast-growing e-commerce market in China, one area is showing even more potential: rural China. These parts of the country, where about 40% of the total population live, generated RMB1.37 trillion ($195 billion) worth of e-commerce sales in 2018, up 30.4% year-over-year and far outpacing the 24% growth seen in China’s overall e-commerce market.

Amazon marketplace resurfaces in China with store on Pinduoduo
Amazon will launch a storefront on Chinese social e-commerce platform Pinduoduo, people familiar with the matter told TechNode on Sunday.
Chemicals giant Shandong Yuhuang downgraded by S&P as it is ‘almost certain’ to default on two bonds, in latest sign of financial strain in China’s third-biggest province
Company is ‘highly unlikely’ to receive local government support for the two onshore bonds due in November and December, says ratings agency    Shandong Yuhuang’s troubles are indicative of widespread liquidity stress faced by the local private economy

China plans measures to boost revenues for renewable power companies
It follows decision to cut renewable power subsidies and plans to stop funding large solar power stations and onshore wind farms   Renewable firms still struggling to produce power as cheaply as coal plants

International Diploma-cy
On the other side of the equation, the world’s leading “consumers” of higher education are China and India, both of whom see enormous benefits in sending hundreds of thousands of their students abroad to take advantage of educational opportunities and to bring that knowledge home. Chinese students, for example, make up 33 percent of all international students in the United States, according to a 2019 report by the Institute of International Education (IIE), while the share of students from India has also grown dramatically. In 2018, China sent 369,548 students to America, while India sent 202,014. For both groups of students, the most popular fields of study are science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), followed by business and management.

EV maker Xpeng has 15,000 orders for its P7 sedan
Preorders for the premium P7 sedan from Chinese electric vehicle (EV) maker Xpeng Motors have climbed to more than 15,000, the company said, a sedan which it launched to compete directly with Tesla for upscale auto buyers in the world’s biggest auto market.Xpeng Motors has expanded product offerings targeting both entry-level buyers and higher-end niche customers in an effort to head off competition from Tesla amid a months-long slowdown in the EV market.

Can China outsmart the United States in the race to build smart cities in Southeast Asia?
Region is at the heart of the geopolitical rivalry between the two economic giants, experts say    Both have committed to regional partnerships but US is struggling to make its mark

China tops the world in 5G patent filings, but grant rates are modest
Chinese companies have filed one-third of essential patents related to 5G technology, according to a report by state-run media on Sunday, a signal that the country is pushing to the forefront in the race for dominance in next-generation wireless networks.  The news shows that China’s efforts to dominate in 5G technology are beginning to pay off despite an ongoing US crackdown on Chinese communications companies such as Huawei and ZTE.

Is globalisation doomed? Business, political leaders contemplate viability at New Economy Forum as US-China rivalry intensifies
China’s relations with the West have reached an ‘inflection point’, former trade representative says   China’s Vice-President Wang Qishan calls for end to ‘cold war mentality’
China attacks US at G20 as the world’s biggest source of instability
Meeting Dutch Foreign Minister Stef Blok on the sidelines of a G20 foreign ministers meeting in the Japanese city of Nagoya, Chinese State Councillor Wang Yi did not hold back in his criticism of the United States.   “The United States is broadly engaged in unilateralism and protectionism, and is damaging multilateralism and the multilateral trading system. It has already become the world’s biggest destabilizing factor,” China’s Foreign Ministry cited Wang as saying.
The China-Russia challenge to the US-led West has hit a BRICS wall
With economic woes hitting all members of the bloc bar India, some are questioning its relevance   Even among members, Beijing and Moscow’s attempts to switch focus to geopolitics is sowing division
China’s ageing population prompts plan to deal with looming silver shock
Five-point strategy unveiled in first policy paper aimed at the most daunting social and political challenge of coming decades   Estimates say over-60s will make up one third of the population by 2050

China’s move to raise rare earth production to weigh on global prices, deal blow to projects in US, Australia
As China raises its annual mining quota for rare earths to a record high, this could potentially push companies in other parts of the world into a tight corner

Shenzhen: Built on factories but not a factory town
I learned that Haidian really is China’s Silicon Valley—a tech hub that emerged from universities and concentrates basic research, the country’s biggest VCs, and most of its brand-name internet companies. Shenzhen is something the US doesn’t have—it’s built on factories the way Silicon Valley and Haidian are built on universities.

China’s dam-building programme must take neighbours into account
Since China began damming the Mekong, droughts have become more frequent and intense in downriver countries    By diverting river water to its mega-dams, China has emerged as Asia’s upstream water controller, giving it great leverage

China dampens blockchain fever with cryptocurrency trading crackdown
October speech by Chinese President Xi Jinping triggered surge in speculation   China’s central bank warns of ‘severe disruption’ to economic and financial order

China’s regulators launch ‘all-around’ crackdown on cryptocurrency
A government group leading the internet financial risk rectification efforts in China has launched an “all-around” crackdown campaign against cryptocurrency and illicit blockchain activities, state-run media Beijing Youth Daily reported on Sunday, following shortly after the People’s Bank of China’s (PBOC) Shanghai headquarters sent out a similar message on Friday.

China’s cryptocurrency miners look to capitalise on policy shift and cheap power, despite trading ban
In a surprising policy shift in late October, China’s economic planning agency removed cryptocurrency mining from a list of activities set for elimination   China dominates 70 per cent of global mining operations, although trading cryptocurrency is banned

How live-streaming site Huya uses mobile to beat its larger competitor at its own game
Twitch might be synonymous with live-streaming games in the US, but in China, there are two giants dominating the field. Douyu is the larger of the two, but rival Huya is growing fast by focusing on a different target: Mobile games like Honor of Kings and PUBG Mobile.
Chinese scientists programme stem cells to ‘fight and destroy’ cancer
Team from Guangzhou Institutes of Biomedicine and Health says technique was successful in treatment of mice    Technique represents another step forward in field of immune therapy, researchers say

Hong Kong King Wai buys Portuguese digital bank BNI Europa, tapping opportunity as Hongkongers seek overseas residency amid political crisis
The conglomerate is also motivated by Beijing’s push to forge closer business ties with Portuguese-speaking economies   BNI will potentially be the only Portuguese bank to offer cross-border digital financial services in the Greater Bay Area and belt and road countries

Hong Kong elections: Carrie Lam promises ‘open mind’ after election rout
Hong Kong’s leader Carrie Lam has said the government will “seriously reflect” after local elections saw massive gains by pro-democracy candidates.

Hong Kong election results giving pro-democracy camp huge win boost Hang Seng, as hopes rise violent protests may subside
Property stocks – which have been hammered amid violent protests – shoot up   Tencent, Wharf REIC and AIA among gainers

Hong Kong protests continue to dampen investor confidence in city’s property market, but London to rebound quickly: Christie’s
‘If you bought in Hong Kong two years ago, and you had to be a seller today, yeah, you probably have a little bit of indigestion,’ says Dan Conn, chief executive of Christie’s International Real Estate   Prices in London will rebound quickly

Pro-Beijing camp’s landslide loss in district council elections ‘a chance for reflection’ on Hong Kong
Commentators in mainland China say the poll might kick-start some deeper thinking on public opinion and the central government’s approach to the city   High-profile tabloid accuses the West of helping opposition forces in the race

If Protests Are an ‘Infection,’ What Is China’s Cure?
Escalating rhetoric reveals how seriously Beijing views the unrest in Hong Kong. But Beijing is not trying to counter the protesters slogan for slogan. Its strategy is much broader. Earlier this year, China harnessed Twitter and Facebook to run state-backed disinformation campaigns, directed mainly at overseas Chinese and Hong Kongers, to frame the protests as a separatist plot aimed at undermining China’s territorial integrity. In October, having laid that groundwork for public support, Beijing said that it was planning a “national security” solution in Hong Kong, paired with ideological education. It’s unclear how severe those measures will be, butPresident Xi Jinping has warned that anyone attempting to split China will face “crushed bodies and shattered bones.” The violence of his language leaves little space for compromise or compassion.
Hong Kong democracy act and future of ‘one country, two systems’ worry investors as city reels from protests
The Hong Kong Human Rights and Democracy Act needs to be signed by US President Donald Trump to become law after it was passed by the US Senate   The ‘one country, two systems’ policy guarantees Hong Kong a high degree of autonomy under the city’s mini-constitution, the Basic Law
What to expect from the 2020 US elections: more disunity, no love for China
History shows that 68 per cent of incumbent presidents get re-elected. So Donald Trump is likely to stay and the division between the House and the Senate will probably continue, as will US-China tensions
China’s latest robots move so smoothly scientists dubbed them ‘zero gravity’
Robotic arm that makes heavy lifting easier can enhance and speed up bespoke projects such as building satellites, researchers say   Use of robots is speeding up construction of China’s BeiDou global positioning system, researchers say

4,200 Chinese Officials Punished for ‘Techan’ Corruption
Many cases involved public servants buying ‘special local products’ with public funds, often to give as ‘gifts’ to business and government connections.

Belgian Foreign Affairs office ‘knows about’ cyberattacks during China mission
 “We are aware of the problem,” the Foreign Affairs office said on Saturday, after it was revealed cyberattacks had targeted the recent Belgian economic mission to China.  Ingrid Van Daele, the spokesperson for State security, admitted “we briefed on the mission beforehand, we did so with others as well.” The delegation to China wasn’t the only one to be briefed by State security. Participating businesses were also briefed through regional trade agencies and business federations.

Alain Gillard
Information Officer
Service Asie Pacifique
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