The Sinocism China Newsletter For 05.09.13

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

In the first official response to the uproar about the Zhu Ling poisoning case, the Beijing Public Security Bureau on Wednesday afternoon released a statement on its @平安北京 Sina Weibo account. The statement says the authorities are not hiding anything, were only called in several months after the poisoning, by which point all the evidence had been destroyed, and while trying their best they could not find the culprit.

Today’s People’s Daily has a piece on the Zhu Ling case in its page 5 commentary section saying that transparency is the best antidote–人民日报-朱令案,公开是一剂解毒良药.

ChinaFile has a very informative, ongoing conversation about this tragic case. The groundswell of public opinion has forced some movement by the authorities, but might there be a backlash once things settle down? Managing social media is so important now that there is a rumor going around that each of the top leaders has his own “social media” secretary.

Those salacious online exposes (New Yorker) of official corruption look to be a thing of the past as the tips are now being channeled into official outlets and at least one activist pushing for asset disclosure is in big trouble (Reuters). Xinhua reports that informant webpages help China gather corruption tip-offs:

Informant webpages opened on China’s major online media outlets last month have been effective in encouraging netizens to provide anti-corruption tips in an orderly manner, authorities said Wednesday. The State Internet Information Office (SIIO) made the remarks in a statement hailing a simultaneous move by websites run by the Xinhua News Agency, the People’s Daily, as well as firms Sina, Sohu and Netease, to open special informant webpages on April 19.

Wednesday’s CCTV Evening News also covered the officially sanctioned tip sites–国内主要网站网络监督专区广受关注.

Citizens want more transparency, the government says it will provide more transparency, but could more transparency be more destabilizing than opacity? No one can accuse Xi Jinping of having an easy job.

Today’s Links:


China Refuses to Confirm Okinawa Island Belongs to Japanese – Bloomberg “The fact that this view is carried by the People’s Daily signals that Beijing may be upping the ante,” Willy Wo-Lap Lam, an adjunct professor of history at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, wrote in an e-mail. “This is psychological warfare and a classic Chinese negotiation tactic — trying to intimidate the opponent by raising the stakes.”  Okinawa, the largest island in the Ryukyu chain, hosts U.S. military installations including Marine Corps Air Station Futenma. The scholars’ comments came in an article about China’s claim to the Diaoyu Islands.

Related: Chinese nationalists eye Okinawa – – July 2012 “Challenging Japan’s sovereignty over the Ryukyus would indeed be a break from the past,” says Taylor Fravel, a Chinese security expert at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, who argues that Beijing has tended to limit its territorial claims for the sake of clearly defined borders. Chinese questioning of Japanese sovereignty over Okinawa is based on the prefecture’s roots in an independent state known as the Ryukyu Kingdom that won control of the archipelago in the 15th century.

China reiterates sovereignty over Diaoyu Islands – Xinhua | Diaoyu Island and its affiliated islets are part of China’s inherent territory and have never been part of Liuqiu or Okinawa, a Foreign Ministry spokeswoman said at a Wednesday press briefing.

Beijing Puzzles Over Urban Growth –  While China has some of the world’s largest cities, it also has about 160 cities in the 200,000 to 1,000,000 population range. The fear of urban planners is that the government will try to develop them all, leading to a mishmash of highways, industries and pollution. China’s government hasn’t bought into the bigger-is-better argument so far, but it is listening to new ideas. The country’s new premier, Li Keqiang, who has made urbanization a focus of China’s economic reform plans, said the government had received 500 proposals on the subject at a March meeting of the largely ceremonial parliament. China’s planning agency, the National Development and Reform Commission, says it will release a blueprint to guide urban-growth policies later this year.

钢铁等产能过剩化解方案拟定 严控新增项目-新闻频道-和讯网 Shanghai Securities News says plan nearly done to address overcapacity in steel, concrete, other industries// 记者8日从权威渠道获悉,为化解钢铁、水泥、平板玻璃等多个行业的产能过剩问题,相关部门已拟定方案并将上报中央决策层。总的来看,今后将严控产能过剩行业新增项目,而违规建设项目将被严厉整治。

Related: “刺激政策”等不来 钢铁水泥业绩“闪腰”_财经频道_一财网 有钢铁企业人士称,本预计“再来一个四万亿”但判断落空,部分重工业企业再拉亏损警报。//pain for firms in steel, concrete, other industries who were hoping for a new stimulus package

China’s Subdued Inflation Gives Li Room to Revamp Prices – Bloomberg China’s consumer price index rose 2.4 percent in April, the National Bureau of Statistics said today in Beijing, compared with a median forecast of 2.3 percent in a Bloomberg News survey. The producer price index fell 2.6 percent, after March’s 1.9 percent drop.// producers can’t raise prices, too much overcapacity?

No-one is impressed by China’s amazing April trade figures | FT Alphaville The good news is China’s April trade figures are super high! The bad news is no-one believes them, which is fair enough because just a few days ago the Chinese foreign exchange authority virtually said that the export numbers are not reliable — it plans to crackdown on companies that appeared to be over-invoicing for exports as a way of skirting capital inflow restrictions. The promise of a crackdown was taken seriously, but it’s believed to be much too late for the April data.

Chinese Director Zhang Yimou Embroiled in Controversy Over Country’s One-Child Policy – The Hollywood Reporter While Chinese law still limits families to a single child, various reports in the Chinese press allege the renowned director may have as many as seven children with four women.// may have been ratted out by former business partner, no word on how many of the kids have foreign passports–揭张艺谋张伟平决裂内幕 16年”情路”全记录[图]–文化–人民网 张艺谋和张伟平之间戏剧性的关系变化,确实就像恋人一样,从初相识,历经了蜜月期和打拼期,甚至在合作16年,诞生11部作品后迎来了“中年危机”,最后上演无言的结局。//no reports so far that they all lived in a copy of the Raise the Red Lantern set

Seeking Asian Female | Quirky Documentary about a Love Match Made Online | Independent Lens | PBS Two strangers — a white American man and a young Chinese woman — pursue a marriage brokered through the Internet. They get more than they bargained for when she moves to America to be his bride in this quirky documentary

China Dips a Toe Into Mideast Diplomacy – Despite the spotlight on the visits by Mr. Abbas and Mr. Netanyahu, China is likely to remain a muted political actor in the Middle East, analysts of the region said. Beijing sees little to gain from being entangled in distant and often seemingly intractable disputes, said Yin Gang, a professor of Middle Eastern studies at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing. “China is a long way from the Middle East, and it can’t even reach a good solution to its own regional problems: North Korea, the Diaoyu Islands, the Philippines, Vietnam,” Mr. Yin said. “Even if China becomes a superpower with an economy on par with the United States’, it still won’t play a major role in the Middle East.”

Related: China, Israel boost cooperation|China Daily Premier Li Keqiang told visiting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that “the new Chinese government attaches great importance to developing relations with Israel”, according to a news release issued by the Foreign Ministry. This is the first visit by an Israeli prime minister to China since then-prime minister Ehud Olmert’s trip in 2007.

人民日报-李克强同以色列总理内塔尼亚胡会谈时强调 拓展双边务实合作 推动中东和平进程 Li meeting with Israel’s Netanyahu gets page 1 treatment in People’s Daily, 3rd item on Wednesday CCTV Evening News. So far no reports of a meeting with Xi Jinping. Palestinian Authority’s Abbas got the full Xi treatment, including welcoming ceremony hosted by Xi, not Li.

Commentary: China plays greater role in Mideast – Xinhua | The leaders did not hold direct talks in Beijing but China’s hosting of the two emphasized its active involvement in Mideast affairs and highlighted its role as a responsible power. The turbulent situation in the Middle East and the Palestinian-Israel conflict in particular, over the years have been knotty problems that defy any immediate solutions. Western powers have often attempted to settle the impasse but their efforts seem to be of no avail. The volatile Mideast situation calls for China’s extra leverage and other increased international efforts…China could adopt a low profile by hiding its capacities and biding its time, and it is also able to make due contributions to the stalled peace process in the Middle East and world peace at large.

Chinese popular sympathies swinging against Israel – OP-ED – Asian Review – For both Israel and Palestine, a faster reconciliation in the short term between the two is best for both, particularly Israel. The longer we wait for the final peace deal to be made, the more likely the Middle East will see a more pro-Palestine China wanting to voice its opinions. In the long run, China’s pro-Palestine inclination will work more and more against Israel, in contrast to the strong pro-Israel inclination of the US. With the weakening US influence in the region, and the growing clout of China, the odds are not favoring Israel. The author is director of the Institute of Hebrew and Jewish Studies at Peking University, editor-in-chief of the Journal of Sino-Western Communications, and also serves as Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Peace Studies at Shanghai Jiao Tong University.



Chinese Economist Proposes Limits on Overseas Investment for Individuals -Caijing Investments abroad by individual Chinese could be capped at $100,000 -150,000, or 50% of their portfolio, Li told a regular meeting of the State Council on Monday. Li is Director of the Center for China in the World Economy at the Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management, and the Mansfield Freeman Professor of Economics. Guidance and protection is needed for those individuals investing abroad at the early stage since overseas investment could be highly risky, said Li.

China Dowry Filled With Gold Signals Gains for Jewelers – Bloomberg Retail sales of gold across China tripled on April 15 and 16 as the metal fell, according to the China Gold Association. Consumers kept buying over last week’s national Labor Day holiday

China opens new front in war as yuan speculation distorts export data | Reuters China’s central bank signaled on Wednesday it was prepared to change its monetary strategy to fend off inflows of speculative capital, as Beijing struggles to control a tide of cash washing in from overseas markets. The move came as April exports blew past expectations, which appeared on the surface to indicate that both China’s economy and global demand were on the mend. But economists were quick to suspect the figures were artificially inflated by investors who were disguising speculative bets on the yuan currency as trade payments.

China brokers boost prop trading profits – Chinese securities brokers are boosting the profits they make from proprietary trading and other investment activities even as these are being outlawed among western banks following the financial crisis. The country’s securities regulators have handed a boost to this business by cutting the capital that brokers must hold against their prop trading activities and expanding the kinds of assets in which they can invest. // what could go wrong…

Seeking control and confidence, China diary buys KKR milk stake | Reuters China Mengniu Dairy Co Ltd’s (2319.HK) deal to buy a $410 million stake in China’s largest unpasteurized milk producer is a strategic move to rebuild trust after a series of scandals left local brands’ reputations in tatters.  Mengniu, twice hit by accusations it sold tainted milk, said on Wednesday it would buy 26.92 percent of China Modern Dairy Holdings Ltd (1117.HK) from private equity firms KKR & Co LP and CDH Investments. The deal will lift Mengniu’s stake in China Modern to about 28 percent.

Guest post: Chinese multinationals – non-state companies rise to the challenge | beyondbrics The rise in China’s outbound investment is a divisive subject. On the one hand, some worry that Chinese multinationals will emerge as powerful competitors by leveraging their economies of scale and cheap funding. On the other hand, many firms are excited about the opportunities to collaborate with Chinese partners in their home markets. For the most part, however, the hype is still greater than reality, and subsequent waves of investment will be very different to the one the world is currently witnessing.

China Stock Market Recap – 1Q2013 (CapitalVue) This report includes aggregates earnings growth and valuation for the overall A shares market, as well as detailed breakdown of performance for 84 industries.

EU agrees China solar panel duties in boldest move yet | Reuters The European Commission agreed on Wednesday to impose punitive import duties on solar panels from China in a move to guard against what it sees as Chinese dumping of cheap goods in Europe.

How Chinese Subsidies Changed the World – Usha C.V. Haley and George T. Haley – Harvard Business Review Because of massive Chinese subsidies to several industries, no free trade exists and markets have failed. To survive, U.S. and European companies must seek government support to open Chinese markets and to protect themselves from subsidized products domestically. And national governments and trade blocs must heed these calls. If they don’t significantly increase pressure on Chinese governments and businesses, the devastation that Chinese subsidies have wreaked on other countries’ economies will continue.

Solar Subsidy Recipient Suing Treasury for More | National Review Online In its suit, SolarCity says two of the company’s subsidiaries received smaller-than-expected grants. The company doesn’t say exactly how much funding it applied for originally, but it says the final grants issued by the Treasury Department were $8 million less than was proper under the law. // when are subsidies OK?




China’s press censors in spotlight as Caixin Century Weekly suspends legal section | South China Morning Post Reports about legal affairs in the May 6 issue of Caixin Century Weekly were instead run under other sections. An insider from the magazine, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the legal section had been suspended due to “some pressure” that required the magazine to focus more on economic reports rather than legal affairs.

Sea cucumbers, abalone off the menu in China frugality drive | South China Morning Post High-end caterers in Beijing and other big cities have borne the brunt of Xi’s austerity drive, which he launched in November in an attempt to tackle pervasive corruption and allay criticism of the lifestyles led by some officials. As the number of lavish official banquets has dwindled, the sale of pricey delicacies such as sea cucumbers and abalone has plunged, suppliers said

Mao Zedong granddaughter’s addition to rich list prompts debate | South China Morning Post With family assets estimated at 5 billion yuan (HK$6.25 billion), Kong Dongmei , granddaughter of the late leader, and husband Chen Dongsheng are 242nd on the 2013 New Fortune 500 Rich List, media reports said yesterday. Chen is chairman of Beijing-based Taikang Life Insurance, and Kong is a major shareholder and executive. She is the daughter of Li Min , Mao’s only surviving child with second wife He Zizhen , and joined the start-up insurance company in 1992 after graduating from the Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics.

穗试水统一城乡户口引户改猜想 新华社——经济参考网 户口簿首页不再出现“非农业家庭户口”或“农业家庭户口”字样,而统一登记为“居民户口家庭户”——广州市公安户政部门近日关于换发户口簿热点问题看似简单的说明,引发了人们对于户籍制度改革加速推进的猜想。

国家发改委“割肉” 煤炭经营许可证酝酿取消 |煤炭|经营许可证|发改委_21世纪网 NDRC abolishing licences for coal production? big deal for coal market, sign of some reform momentum at NDRC?// :一位熟悉此次改革方案研究的人士评价称,“对于国家发改委而言,取消煤炭生产许可证等同于割肉,也是煤炭市场革命性的变化。现阶段,发改委对煤炭经营实行总量控制,向各省分配配额,权力很大。”

刘锋:“左派”从哪里来,到哪里去?-财经网 Caijing commentator Liu Feng on the “leftists”// 主张、口号越是动听,越要注意它可能存在的伪装,社会平等、公正有两种,一种有社会自由和个人自由,另一种没有社会自由和个人自由。中国曾经历过那没有社会自由和个人自由的所谓社会平等、公正的苦难时代,再也不希望中国重蹈覆辙…刘锋为法学博士,独立学者,微博名“锋语彩虹” //disturbing video (part 1part 2part 3 on Youku) from 5.4 Maoist gathering in changsha 

叶剑英曾孙叶仲豪当选为团中央十七大代表_资讯频道_凤凰网 在本次团代会上,团市委书记叶仲豪同志当选为共青团广东省第十三届委员会委员和团中央十七大代表

Siweiluozi’s Blog: Translation: SPC Directive on Handling Suits Related to Internet “Management” Several days ago, I came across this interesting document via a weibo post by Beijing lawyer Zhou Ze. Dating from 2009, it is an internal directive from the Supreme People’s Court instructing lower courts on how to handle lawsuits arising from Internet “management” (which, if it wasn’t already clear, is a euphemism for censorship).



Defaming China cannot cover US evil acts – People’s Daily Online This year the Pentagon annual report made harsh accusations against China instead of cautious comments in the past. The report also shifted its focus from economic areas to political and economic areas, which clearly showed the U.S.’ intention of reversing its negative image as an international cyber peace buster. By the report the U.S. also set up an imaginary enemy so as to get more financial support and legal basis for its cyber army expansion. It is well known that actually the U.S. is the “hackers’ empire”, which has had a lot of cyber espionage targeting not only hostile countries but also allies in political, military, scientific, commercial and other fields.

Maritime law enforcement to double air patrols |Politics | China intends to double its offshore air patrols by 2015, according to a government report released on Wednesday. China’s Ocean Development Report (2013), which was released by the China Institute for Marine Affairs under the State Oceanic Administration, emphasizes the importance of offshore air patrols to the country’s maritime law enforcement. According to the report, by 2015 the country’s marine surveillance force will include fixed-wing aircraft with a range of more than 4,500 kilometers.

中国对黄岩岛测量标识实物照片首次公布(图) – 新华国际 – 新华网

China and India’s rivalry extends to the Arctic – Yahoo! News While the recent troop standoff in a remote Himalayan desert spotlights a long-running border dispute between China and India, the two emerging giants are engaged in a rivalry for global influence that spreads much farther afield. From Africa to the Arctic, the world’s two most populous countries are bumping up against each other in their search for resources and new markets. Their rivalry is spilling over into global diplomacy and international institutions where Beijing and Delhi have elbow-jabbed over development loans and a seat for India on the U.N. Security Council.

Indian FM kicks off 2-day China visit |Politics | Indian Minister of External Affairs Salman Khurshid will start a two-day visit to China on Thursday, which experts said demonstrates both sides’ maturity to deal with border disputes and emphasis on relationship development.

South Korea’s Park Sees U.S. Ties as Key in Facing North – Bloomberg Park’s speech at a joint meeting of Congress followed talks the previous day with President Barack Obama, in which the two leaders sought to demonstrate unity between the U.S. and South Korea in response to North Korean belligerence. Obama said May 7 the longtime allies are “as united as ever.”

Poll: Japanese choose South Korea over China, but South Koreans like China better – AJW by The Asahi Shimbun Japanese overwhelmingly prefer South Korea to China, but South Koreans favor China by an almost equally wide margin over Japan, according to a joint poll by private Japanese and South Korean organizations. The survey, released on May 7, also found that a large proportion of the respondents’ view of the other country turned negative over the past year, which was marked by South Korean President Lee Myung-bak’s visit to the Takeshima islets in August, a first by any South Korean president.

Premier Repeats Japan’s Admission Of War Aggression – Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Wednesday appeared to try to ease tension with neighboring countries by repeating Japan’s admission of and apology for the suffering it caused its former colonial subjects. Abe’s remarks came amid growing concern in China and South Korea over what could be considered historical revisionism among Japan’s top officials.

China-Japan trade shows sign of pickup in April- 毎日jp(毎日新聞) Two-way trade totaled $27.13 billion in April, down 2.4 percent from a year earlier, the General Administration of Customs said. The rate improved from a 14.7 percent decline in March. Chinese exports to Japan dropped 1.2 percent in the reporting month, and Chinese imports from Japan slid 3.3 percent, it said.

中国军网_中国营 和平梦 ——成都军区第14集团军某工兵团赴黎巴嫩维和纪事 coincidental timing for this page PLA Daily piece on Chinese peacekeeping troops in Lebanon?

The Ryukyus and Taiwan in the East Asian Seas: A Longue Duree Perspective :: JapanFocus The Ryukyu archipelago is composed primarily of coral reefs. The restored palace in Naha raises the question of how a large-scale political system emerged on these islands; on Taiwan, which is far larger and richer in natural resources, a political and economic order of comparable sophistication did not appear until later. Is there a connection between the decline of the Ryukyu kingdom and the rise of Taiwan? What can be learned from the Ryukyus’ transformation from a kingdom and a Chinese tributary state to a Japanese prefecture—and from Taiwan’s incorporation by China, then by Japan, and then by China again, as well as its subsequent rise as an economic force? In both the Ryukyus and Taiwan, the characteristics of kingdom and nationhood have been heavily conditioned by the location of these insular territories in relation to China and Japan. Drawing on the author’s research on related issues [1], this article will address these questions by examining the longue durée in East Asian maritime history, spanning the fourteenth to the twenty-first centuries.



Japan, Taiwan fail to set fishing rules – The Japan News TAIPEI (Jiji Press)–Japan and Taiwan failed to agree on fishing rules for waters around the Senkaku Islands, Okinawa Prefecture, at the first meeting of a joint fishery committee in Taipei on Tuesday.

Clearing the Men’s Room for Thatcher by Jonathan Mirsky | NYRblog | The New York Review of BooksThat night, Chris Patten, the last British governor of Hong Kong, a Tory MP, and one of those who, during her third term, deposed Prime Minister Thatcher, gave a dinner party for her to which my wife and I were invited. After the meal, Lady Thatcher sat on a couch; guests were led up to it, chatted for a few minutes, and then made way for another guest. Near midnight I was on the couch, telling Lady Thatcher that when she gave her speech the next day she must mention that many international business deals with China were concluded across the border in Hong Kong, where there was (and is) a rule of law. She said that was news to her but no, no, no, the speech was already written. After half an hour still on the couch she looked over at the heavy-eyed Patten and the few remaining guests and asked what he thought. He said, “It would be insane to get between Margaret Thatcher and Jonathan Mirsky.” Finally, she agreed to include what I suggested in her speech.



“Iron Man 3” sweeps Chinese box office – Xinhua | “Iron Man 3” took in 410 million yuan (66.02 million U.S. dollars) in its first five days after debuting on Wednesday, knocking off a domestic drama to be No.1 at the Chinese box office. “So Young,” a domestic film about love on a campus, finished second with 340 million yuan in the week ending on Sunday, China Film News said on Tuesday.

Rumor: Lenovo to Acquire Wandoujia | Marbridge Consulting – China Wireless News According to an industry source, Chinese consumer electronics manufacturer Lenovo (0992.HK) is currently in negotiations to acquire Android handset assistant application and Innovation Works-incubated startup Wandoujia to expand the Lenovo LeStore app store //skeptical. wandoujia has been raising another round, hear business is going well, cracked $1m USD monthly revenue in Q1

WeChat’s Monthly Active Users Reach 190 Mln | Marbridge Consulting – China Wireless News At the Global Mobile Internet Conference (GMIC) in Beijing today, Hou Xiaonan, deputy GM of Chinese internet and mobile services firm Tencent’s (0700.HK) open platform, stated that monthly active users of Tencent’s WeChat (Weixin) mobile messaging service have reached 190 mln, while monthly active users of its mobile QQ Browser have reached 500 mln

搜索引擎格局再生变:百度360腾讯竞购搜狗|搜狗|百度|腾讯_互联网_新浪科技_新浪网 rumors that Baidu competing with Qihoo to buy Sohu’s Sogou sesrch business…hard to see how a Baidu purchase would pass an anti-monopoly review// 新浪科技讯 5月8日晚间消息,投资界消息人士透露,搜狐旗下搜狗正寻求出售,目前百度、360、腾讯均在竞购,其中360竞购最为积极,但是百度出价更高,目前谈判正在进行中。

张朝阳:我们这代人实际是没价值观也没原则_行业动态_投资界 Sohu CEO Charles Zhang says his generation has no value system or principles // 我们这代人实际是没价值观的,也没原则。所以有丛林法则,各种各样的原因你可能就成功了。你开始利用而不是遵守原则,利用的尺度很大。最后你放弃了谦卑,开始自我膨胀。神经原可塑性原理就是说,你管理不好自己就到负面,思维很容易陷入。尤其当你获得很多、自我膨胀时,神经原可塑性原理就会从负面角度来攻击你。

360搜狗合并疑已谈定 互联网寡头之战将加剧_科技频道_凤凰网 Qihoo merging in Sohu’s sogou? would make a significant search player, on mobile and pc

Who Benefits If China Allows Investors to Buy Overseas? Baidu, That’s Who – Emerging Markets Daily – Should the new policy be established, we believe Chinese individual investors who invest in global stock markets will first invest in companies familiar to them. Consequently we believe it is likely that these investors will invest in Chinese Internet stocks such as Tencent, (0700.HK), Baidu (BIDU), Youku Tudou (YOKU), Qihoo (QIHU), and others. // and they popped wednesday…think this is overblown as a reason



Call for attention to dyslexic children – Xinhua | Wu Xiping, an office worker from Beijing, had been concerned about her 11-year-old son’s bad writing until two years ago when she accidentally found out the boy has dyslexia. It is a terminology she has never heard before, neither have many other Chinese parents

A Battle to Become Art Capital of China – The decision to donate to an institution outside mainland China was not taken lightly. “My first impulse was to give these artworks to a museum in Beijing or Shanghai,” Mr. Sigg, a former Swiss ambassador to China, said in an interview. But he said he was concerned that works by artists who are blacklisted in China’s state-run museums might never be exhibited in public. Before making a gift to one of these state citadels of culture, he said, he “wanted China to reveal its standards of censorship — what could be shown and couldn’t be shown in the collection.” Because such details were not provided by the authorities, Mr. Sigg said, he opted for the M+ in Hong Kong

A Canvas That Stretches to China – Scene Asia – WSJ Charles Billich// The Wall Street Journal: You have a special relationship with China, starting with your involvement in the Olympic bid. Until recently you had a home in Beijing. What draws you to the country?



Ministry responds to public concerns about pollution |Society | On Wednesday, the Environmental Protection Ministry revealed how the government has handled 13 cases of pollution in the first three months of 2013.

Govt environmental transparency in doubt |Society | More than 60 percent of respondents to a recent survey said they are unsatisfied with, or unclear of, transparent government information regarding environmental protection. The survey, conducted by the Public Opinion Research Center under Shanghai Jiao Tong University, aims to find out residents’ attitudes toward the country’s environmental protection and how they evaluate government performance in this sector.



Starbucks, Nestle Square Off in Bid for Dominance of China’s Coffee Market — [contextChina] / 太平洋中国通 Much has been written about the proliferation of cafes on the Chinese mainland. Starbucks plans to have 1,500 stores in China by 2015. Costa Coffee has stated that they will have 2,500 cafes in China by 2018. Even McDonalds has gotten in on the act, opening small coffee outlets on street corners across the country. All of these developments have been driven by surging demand for coffee in China – the Chinese coffee market has grown at rates of 15 percent annually in recent years and is expected to expand from its current size of 70 billion renminbi ($11.27 billion) to 1 trillion renminbi ($160.94 billion) over the course of the next ten years. Significantly less attention has been paid to how the evolving strategies of Nestle and Starbucks stand to bring them into direct competition for dominance of China’s coffee market.



Death of girl at mall triggers large protest |Society | very unusual in Beijing, worrisome for authorities, especially given the anniversary 26 days away. expect a tenser than usual month ahead in Beijing? // Demonstrators and police were injured on Wednesday when a protest triggered by the death of a Beijing female sales clerk turned ugly. Yuan Liya, 22, died after plunging from the seventh floor of a mall last week, and police say initial findings point to suicide. However, by Wednesday morning, hundreds of people had gathered outside the Jingwen coat wholesale outlet in the capital’s Fengtai district to call for further investigations into the tragedy.

South Beijing Teeming With Police In Response To Protest After Death Of Allegedly Gang-Raped Girl [UPDATE] – Beijing Cream lots of pictures// A massive police and paramilitary presence has descended upon Fengtai District around Jingwen Clothing and Apparel Shopping Mall, the scene of either a suicide or murder last Friday.

媒体称北京出租车公司每月可收4亿份儿钱 – 延展阅读-新华网  北京出租车调价听证方案前日公布,其中未涉及对出租车公司份儿钱的调整。 对此,北京市发改委有关负责人表示,北京正抓紧研究相关问题,并将于近日出台相关政策。

北京市发改委:此轮出租车涨价收益全部归司机 – 地方联播 – 新华网 为了鼓励司机出车,北京将改变政府和企业现在的燃油补贴方式,提高燃油补贴效率,调动司机积极性,多劳多得。在补贴总额不变的情况下,把一部分补贴与驾驶员出车天数、工作时间、出车率等运营指标挂钩,按月直接发给司机;其余补贴拿出来建立保障奖励机制。据了解,现在北京市的燃油补贴政策是出租车每车每月1425元,并没有跟出租车司机的运营情况相挂钩。