China Readings for December 8th

"Sinocism is the Presidential Daily Brief for China hands"- Evan Osnos, New Yorker Correspondent and National Book Award Winner

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  • Drone that crashed in Iran may give away U.S. secrets – – Peter W. Singer, author of "Wired for War," a book about robotic warfare, said it's not new to have drones downed in enemy territory, but the RQ-170 represents the next generation of drone aircraft.

    "It carries a variety of systems that wouldn't be much of a benefit to Iran, but to its allies such as China and Russia, it's a potential gold mine," Singer said….

    "It's bad — they'll have everything" in terms of the secret technology in the aircraft, the official said. "And the Chinese or the Russians will have it too."

  • Desert mega-mines in the Gobi are likely to transform Mongolia’s economy, nomads’ lives and a great wilderness | chinadialogue – In the southern Gobi, extraction of coking coal, copper and other resources is likely to transform the economy, nomads’ lives and one of the world’s great wilderness areas. Jonathan Watts reports.
  • Foreigners in China squeezed by pensions, taxes – Yahoo! News – Foreign companies that are looking to China to shore up wilting global sales have been hit by higher payroll taxes, surcharges to subsidize unions and other changes that are making conditions tougher just as economic growth slows.
    The biggest worry for many is an abrupt order for foreign workers and their employers to start paying up to 40 percent of their wages for pensions and other welfare. Automakers face a possible tax hike, while tax authorities are testing a system to collect dues for China's umbrella labor group from companies without union workers.
  • China Economic Watch | What Do Increasing Loan Impairment Losses Mean for Chinese Banks? – An increase in the provision coverage ratio (provisions/NPLs) can therefore be a leading indicator of a potentially deteriorating loan portfolio. The current increase in the provision coverage ratio is consistent with expectations that there will be an uptick in the number of NPLs next year.

    It’s possible that many of the current loan impairment losses may be reversed as the financial situation of the borrowers improves. However, if the slowdown in the Chinese economy continues many of these loans might further deteriorate, forcing additional loan impairment losses and hurting bank profitability. It’s safe to say that in the environment of credit tightening and slowing economic growth this possibility weighs heavily on the minds of Chinese bank managers.

  • Beijing Officials Mum on Air Quality Readings – Caixin Online – A Chinese citizen filed a request asking the government to release its PM 2.5 air quality readings, but Beijing officials said they are not obligated to disclose figures on this class of particles
  • 北影学生打死清洁工被拘 校方拒绝空开监控录像 – 今日视点 – 合肥房地产门户网站 – 合房网 HFHOUSE.COM – 据京华时报12月7日报道 前天下午,北京电影学院一名学生与校园清洁工发生冲突,导致该清洁工死亡。事件发生后,一些北京电影学院的学生自发祭奠死者。昨天下午,记者从海淀警方获悉,嫌疑人因涉嫌故意伤害罪已被刑事拘留,警方仍在对此事进行调查。
  • In a certain state of undress – – Ai Weiwei, the Chinese dissident artist, has found a new way to get under the skin of the country’s humourless autocrats.
    After detaining Mr Ai in an undisclosed location for 81 days without charge this year and then handing him an enormous tax bill, state security agents have now accused him of pornography for having his photo taken with four female supporters.
  • India’s dreams of web censorship | beyondbrics | News and views on emerging markets from the Financial Times – – The Way of The China Internet//

    If you are offended by this post, please contact Kapil Sibal, India’s telecoms and IT minister, and he will make sure it is promptly taken down.

    Actually, if Sibal has his way and you are offended by this post, the armies of people to be employed by internet companies operating in India to monitor their sites for potentially offensive material – whether it originates in India or abroad – will ensure that it is removed before it can even be published. And good luck to all of them with that.

  • Chinese, US defense officials meet in Beijing – Yahoo! News
  • Tencent makes less-than-stellar bond debut – Debt – News – – The network for financial decision makers – The Chinese internet firm's bonds widen in secondary markets despite strong US participation, with investors concerned over the "variable interest entity" structure.

    On December 5, 2011, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged four Chinese citizens and a Chinese-based entity with insider trading and obtained an emergency court order to freeze their assets after they reaped more than $2.7 million in profits by trading in advance of a recent public announcement of a merger agreement between London-based Pearson plc and Beijing-based Global Education and Technology Group, Ltd.

  • Beijing Smog Lifts as Pollution Levels Drop – Bloomberg – cold winds blowing the smog to japan and korea
  • China Oumei Real Estate Inc.: NASDAQ:OMEI quotes & news – Google Finance – China Oumei Real Estate Inc., formerly Dragon Acquisition Corporation, is a real estate development company operating in the People’s Republic of China.
  • China Oumei Real Estate Inc. Reports Second Quarter 2011 Results — QINGDAO, China, Oct. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — – i'd be dumping shares too if I were an insider//

    QINGDAO, China, Oct. 5, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — China Oumei Real Estate Inc. ("China Oumei," or the "Company"), a leading housing and real estate development company headquartered in Qingdao, Shandong Province, China, today reported its financial results for the second quarter ended June 25, 2011.
    Second Quarter 2011 Highlights
    Total sales decreased 45.8% to $15.3 million in the second quarter of 2011 from $28.2 million in the second quarter of 2010.
    Gross profit decreased 31.2% to $6.4 million from $9.3 million in the second quarter of 2010.
    Gross margin increased to 41.8% from 33.0% in the second quarter of 2010.
    Operating income decreased 19.7% to $5.1 million from $6.3 million in the second quarter of 2010.
    Net income decreased 15.0% to $3.3 million from $3.9 million in the second quarter of 2010.
    Diluted net income per share decreased to $0.10 from $0.12 in the second quarter of 2010.

  • China Oumei real Estate Inc.: Form F-1 – Filed by – We are one of the leading real estate development companies located in Qingdao, Shandong province, China. We began operations in 2001, and in 2010 we were recognized in the official City of Qingdao Commission of Development & Construction’s evaluation as one of the ten most outstanding real estate developers in Qingdao, measured by a combination of revenue, customer satisfaction, as well as several other factors.

    We develop and sell residential and commercial properties, targeting middle and upper income customers in the coastal region of the Shandong peninsula (Greater Qingdao) located in northeastern China, including the cities of Qingdao, Weihai and Yantai, as well as other inland locations, such as Weifang.

  • Exclusive: Shell strikes shale gas in China – Yahoo! News
  • Insider: $56 Billion Later, Airport Security Is Junk | Danger Room | – The Department of Homeland Security has spent billions since 9/11 trying to keep dangerous people and dangerous explosives off airplanes, and treating us all air travelers like potential terrorists in the process. But according to a former security adviser to a leading airline, the terrorists have changed the game — and the government hasn’t yet caught on.
  • America’s Shadow State in Pakistan – The Daily Beast – U.S.-Pakistani relations may be on the rocks, but the CIA’s secret friends in the country fight on in units, prisons, and bases the United States has been building up since 9/11 to counter the pro-Taliban side of Pakistan’s military and intelligence services. Eli Lake reports exclusively.
  • U.S. Built Its Own Secret Pakistani Spy Service | Danger Room |
  • What Will China’s Carrier Be Used For? | Defense Tech – U.S. Naval War College professor Andrew Erickson has just come out with another interesting analysis of China’s new aircraft carrier, noting that the ship, equipped with advanced radars and defensive weapons doesn’t sound remotely like a true training carrier. Instead, it will likely serve as the blueprint for a fleet of ships designed to deploy Chinese fighter jets all over the resource-rich South China Sea and the Yellow Sea.
  • The Heart of the Matter: Leon Panetta is Full of Shit – According to Panetta, returning to 2007 military spending levels, and still spending about as much as the rest of the world combined — means doomsday for America. Shit, I'm laughing at him right now.

    The rest of Panetta's Very Scary Letter is equally misleading. "You cannot buy three quarters of a ship or a building," he warns. Well, true, three quarters of a ship wouldn't be very useful. I mean, it would be like three quarters of a bullet, or something! But you could settle for, I don't know, say, nine out of the twelve new ships you wanted — three quarters overall. Either Panetta is too stupid to know this, or he's hoping the public is too stupid to notice it for him.

    The closest Panetta comes to anything specific about America's defense needs is to note that cuts would be bad for contractors. At which point, you start to get a feel for what really drives him and who he really represents.

  • After drone was lost, CIA tried a head fake – Checkpoint Washington – The Washington Post – Hours after Iranian news outlets reported that the country had recovered a sophisticated American surveillance plane, U.S. officials responded with an apparently deliberate media misdirect.
  • How Iran May Have Captured An RQ-170 Stealth Drone | Digital Dao
  • 中美证券市场联合监管缺少一纸协定 谈判陷僵持_科技频道_凤凰网
  • Chinese press report on PCAOB | China Accounting Blog | Paul Gillis – The sense I get from the article is that China wants to provide specific information to the PCAOB based on document requests that it can vet for state secrecy issues, while the PCAOB wants to come and do joint inspections. The Chinese approach is unworkable. It is not practical to do an inspection of an audit without access to the full audit working papers. The deficiencies in a audit will be discovered more because of what is not in the working papers, rather than through an examination of what is there. That is, deficiencies in audit quality often relate to the failure to do the steps necessary to verify a particular balance, not from doing the steps incorrectly.   

    It was reported in October that Chinese regulators called the Big Four in and asked them to do a self assessment of how much information had been shared with their overseas offices and overseas regulators. The article seems to indicate that the State Council put that investigation on hold. That probably signals that the State Council did not wish to further escalate the situation until a way forward could be agreed. 

  • More Time Watching Video on PC & Mobile Than TV in China | China Internet Watch – why SARFT likely planning moves on online video
  • Sinica Podcast-The Soul of Beijing – Filled with stories of pig excrement, SARS babies, and enough Chinese profanity to satiate even the Beijing Profanity Alliance, this show was a pleasure to put on and we were really glad to see everyone who came out. Joining Kaiser Kuo on stage were two Sinica stalwarts: Chinese media export Jeremy Goldkorn and David Moser, jazz pianist and head of the CET Beijing program. We were also thrilled to be joined by Zha Jianying, author of China Pop and Tide Players, and a now-expat Beijinger from New York who admits to being torn between her two homes.
  • Netizens Call Foul on Global Times’ Hu Xijin | China Digital Times (CDT) – Hundreds of protesters gathered Oct. 26-27 in the streets of Zhili, a township in Huzhou, northern Zhejiang Province, to demand an end to tax hikes and various local “fees.” One such tax includes a “machinery head tax” on factories. Many turned violent, smashing windows and setting fire to cars. Rioters attacked an Audi while it drove by, forcing the driver off the road and leading him to hit ten bystanders. Riot police were called in to quell the protests.

    Hu Xijin, Chief Editor of the party newspaper Global Times, posted on his Sina Weibo account about an editorial on Oct. 28 titled “Whatever the reason, perpetrators of violence must be harshly punished.” Readers left angry comments about Hu’s “double standard” for protesters and government officials.

  • ‘It’s really good stuff’: undercover at a Chinese tiger bone wine auction | Jonathan Watts | Environment | – Is China serious about ending the trade in tigers and other endangered animals?

    The question posed itself last Saturday as I sat at an auction in Beijing watching the hammer go down on cases of spirits and tonics fortified with tiger, rhino horn and pangolin.

    Sales of such products are forbidden by Chinese law and international convention, yet even though the event at the Kunlun hotel had been advertised the previous night on state television and flagged up by outraged conservation groups, uniformed police were initially conspicuous by their absence.

    The buyers, however, had turned up in droves, or more precisely in Audis and BMWs, for this was a sale aimed very much at the affluent middle class.