Another DPRK Missile; Fiscal Stimulus; Innovation; The United Front Down Under- Sinocism 08.30.17

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

Happy Wednesday…The North Koreans launched another missile, this one over Japan, on the 107th anniversary of the “Japan-Korea Annexation Treaty”. I am getting sick of putting the DPRK in the essential eight every issue.

For some distraction in an otherwise darkening time check out this smiling pig saved from a flood in Sichuan, and the memes it inspired:

AnchorThe Essential Eight

1. North Korea Shoots A Missile Over Japan, No One Has An Effective Response

Comment: When is the next significant anniversary in the DPRK? And is it possible that the North Koreans have outplayed yet another US president?

North Korea’s missile launch over Japan designed to cause maximum mayhem, minimal blowback – The Washington Post:

Tillerson had stressed Sunday that the offer of talks remained open, and he encouraged Kim to choose “a different path.” For weeks, U.S. officials have sought to assure Kim that Washington does not want to topple him or invade his country, a message also meant to appeal to North Korea’s protector, China.

Trump said last week that North Korea was finally “starting to respect us,” although he added that his threat to answer the country’s provocations with “fire and fury” might not have been strong enough.

Tillerson also had publicly praised North Korea last week for showing “restraint” since the U.N. Security Council vote and in the face of the annual military drills. Although North Korea had not test-launched any missiles for nearly a month at that point, it has done so twice since Tillerson spoke.

Kim Jong Un Guides Strategic Ballistic Rocket Launching Drill of KPA Strategic Force | KCNA Watch:

Officers and men of the KPA Strategic Force extended the warmest thanks to Kim Jong Un, peerless patriot and hero of the nation, who gave vent to the long-pent grudge of the Korean people by mapping out a bold plan to make the cruel Japanese islanders insensible on bloody Aug. 29 when the disgraceful “Korea-Japan Annexation Treaty” was proclaimed 107 years ago and approving ballistic rocket launching in the capital region, and pledged that once the Party Central Committee issues an order, they will fulfill their sacred mission and duty as the reliable nuclear force of the WPK in the van of the final sacred war which will win victory in the standoff with imperialism and the U.S.

U.N. Condemns North Korea’s Latest Missile Tests, but Takes No Action – The New York Times:

While attending the launching of the missile, a Hwasong-12, on Tuesday, Mr. Kim said North Korea needed to conduct “more ballistic rocket launching drills with the Pacific as a target in the future,” according to the North’s official Korean Central News Agency. Mr. Kim called the test on Tuesday “a meaningful prelude to containing Guam” and “a curtain-raiser” of the North’s “resolute countermeasures against” the joint military exercises that the United States and South Korea began last week.

China asks for restraint on Korean Peninsula nuclear issue – Xinhua:

“I suggest all parties calmly and meticulously study the relevant resolutions by the UN Security Council,” she said, explaining that the resolutions consist of at least two parts: to curb the nuclear and missile development by the DPRK, and to resume the Six-Party Talks.

“Therefore, to those who simply cannot stop talking about sanctions, I would like to ask them whether they have been comprehensively and earnestly implementing the Security Council resolutions in a balanced way. Or rather did they put undue amount of emphasis on sanctions while making no efforts to create the necessary conditions and environment for the resumption of the Six-Party Talks?” said Hua.

Russia rebuffs U.S. on North Korea, says Moscow, Beijing not to blame – Reuters:

“We view as groundless attempts undertaken by the U.S. and a number of other countries to shift responsibility to Russia and China, almost blaming Moscow and Beijing for indulging the missile and nuclear ambitions of the DPRK (North Korea),” the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement.

North Korea: China’s Xi Jinping ‘does not like Kim Jong-un at all’ but will tolerate him, says former US ambassador | The Independent:

‘The most derogatory expression I’ve ever heard President Xi Jinping use was his description of Kim Jong-un,’ says former US ambassador to China, Max Baucus

N. Korea exported $270 million in coal, iron since December: PoE | NK News – North Korea News:

North Korea continued to export sanctioned or restricted metals and minerals worth over $270 million to numerous countries despite the passage of multiple UN Security Council resolutions, a leaked mid-year UN Panel of Experts (PoE) report reveals.

2. PACOM Commander Adm. Harry Harris To Canberra, Other Vacant Asian Posts In The US Government Soon To Have Appointees?

Comment: The Washington Post’s Josh Rogin reports that Adm. Harris, hated by Beijing for his hawkishness and his Japanese descent, may head to Canberra as US ambassador to Australia. Rogin also reports that the Asia leads at the Pentagon and State may soon have appointees.

Top admiral in Pacific under consideration for Australia envoy – The Washington Post:

Adm. Harry Harris, the commander of U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM), is in the last year of his three-year tour. He is set to retire early next year, but he could move from Hawaii to Canberra if the Trump administration appoints him as U.S. ambassador there. Three administration officials told me that Harris is being discussed for that role, although no decision has been made….

The Australia ambassador post is only one of many senior positions related to Asia that remain unfilled. Trump has yet to name an ambassador to South Korea, assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific Affairs, assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, among others.

Former George W. Bush administration White House official Victor Cha is the leading candidate for U.S. envoy to Seoul, administration officials said. Former State Department official Randall Schriver is the leading candidate for the Pentagon job, officials said.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wanted to appoint Susan Thornton, the acting top Asia official at State, to fill that role permanently, but she was opposed for months by Bannon, according to administration officials. Now that Bannon has left the administration, her prospects have improved. The White House had also been considering Hong Kong lawyer Michael DeSombre for the job, but DeSombre, a top overseas Republican fundraiser, lost his main advocate when Priebus left.

The Global Times on the Rogin report, as usual mentions that Harris is of Japanese descent-美军或有大动作!最反华的日裔太平洋司令要走人了

Trump’s expected pick for ambassador to South Korea, Victor Cha, signals more pressure on China — Quartz:

Reuters reported on Wednesday (Aug. 30), on the heels of North Korea firing a missile that passed over Japan, that the administration of US president Donald Trump is about to announce a former White House official, Georgetown University professor Victor Cha, as its nominee for ambassador to South Korea. The report drew cheers online from many Korean peninsula watchers.

3. More Fiscal Stimulus On The Way While Local Governments Keep Hiding Debt?

China hints at more government spending to shore up economic growth | South China Morning Post:

“China’s fiscal policies must be more proactive and effective … while monetary policy must stay prudent and neutral,” He told the National People’s Congress Standing Committee.

Xiao Jie, China’s finance minister, told the lawmakers his ministry would urge local governments to accelerate spending on approved projects to “release effects of fiscal funding support and policy support”. Xiao also said fiscal authorities would try to woo more investment into public-private partnerships and raise funds for “new infrastructure and utilities”.

Race to defuse Chinese debt time bomb hampered by local officials’ reluctance to reveal extent of borrowing | South China Morning Post:

About 201 of China’s 295 cities released outstanding debt figures, including special bonds and general liabilities, but only 37 cities published breakdowns, according to research released by the Public Policy and Management School at Tsinghua University on Tuesday.

The average transparency rating in the appraisal, which checked local disclosure of a series of indicators, was only 20 out of 100. Some governments earned no credit in this aspect, according to the research.

“Local governments might be very sensitive to disclosure of any inappropriate debt raising given central authorities’ threat… of holding officials accountable,” Yu Qiao, who leads the annual study, was quoted by China Economic Weekly as saying.





4. Will The “Fat Tech Tech Dragon” Become An Innovation Powerhouse?

Comment: An interesting report from CSIS scholar Scott Kennedy, China’s ability to innovate will be a determining factor in its future success and is a huge focus of the Communist Party under Xi. There is a lot of innovation in China, there are also large innovation taxes from censorship and ideological rigidity. Be wary of anyone who tells you there is no innovation in China and there can not be so long as the Communist Party is in charge. That is reductionist, wishful thinking. I was a guest on CNN’s “On China” show in 2015 talking about this topic, some of the discussion is viewable here

The Fat Tech Dragon | Center for Strategic and International Studies:

The purpose of this report is to develop a baseline analysis of innovation in China by systematically examining national trends in China while placing the country in comparative perspective. The report presents data on innovation inputs, such as finance, as well as several types of innovation outputs, such as intellectual property and commercial performance. This study relies primarily on broad quantitative measures because they facilitate measuring trends over time and engaging in cross-national comparison. The numerical data are supplemented by interviews with business executives, industry analysts, investors, and government officials in the United States and in China…

China’s high-tech drive may be characterized as “good-enough innovation.” From a negative perspective, China is investing a great deal of human capital and funding, but is still far from a leader in high tech. From a more positive perspective, China is achieving incremental progress by benefiting from its strong capacity in manufacturing, the accumulation and diffusion of tacit knowledge, and the opportunities provided by such a large market.

5. Ideological Work Intensifying In Chinese Universities 

Universities establish depts to strengthen teachers’ ideology – Global Times:

According to recent reports by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) of the CPC,several universities including Zhejiang University, the Central University of Finance and Economics, and China Agricultural University have established “Party committee teacher departments.”

The commission didn’t mention whether the prestigious Tsinghua University has set up such department but it said the school “will build a teacher development center, guide new teachers as well as scale up workshops for young teachers on both Marxist theory and university culture.”

Chongqing University vows to wipe out influence of Bo Xilai, Wang Lijun – Global Times:

The university urged to step up political and ideological education for all CPC members by using Bo and Wang as negative examples, and asked its CPC members to firmly establish the four consciousnesses of the ideology, the whole, the core and the line, it said.

The university also vowed to strongly support the CPC Central Committee’s decision on Sun Zhengcai, former Party chief of Chongqing, who was put under investigation for “serious discipline violation” in July.

There are links to all the rectification reports from last round of CCDI inspections, including from the universities here-十八届中央第十二轮巡视整改情况全部公布————焦点图片——中央纪委监察部网站

Question: How will the Western educational partners of these institutions deal with the ideological work at these schools? 

6. The Communist Party Knows Younger Chinese Pose An Ideological Challenge

Chinese Textbooks Get a Few Shades Redder – Sixth Tone:

In a press conference Monday, the assistant minister of education, Zheng Fuzhi, said that the new textbooks will help reinforce the will of the nation and the “Core Socialist Values” — a set of 12 ideological tenets promoted in the country since 2012. Zheng is also the director of the ministry’s textbook bureau. “The core values will be embodied in the flesh and blood of the Chinese language [subject],” Wen Rumin, the editor-in-chief of the Chinese textbooks, said at the press conference according to a report by financial news outlet Caixin. It added that the new Chinese language textbooks include dozens of articles about revolutionary heroism, such as Mao Zedong’s well-known piece “Serve the People.” Students will also learn more classic Chinese literature compared with the widely used previous book from People’s Education Press.

Comment: This podcast with Alec Ash, author of the book “Wish Lanterns: Young Lives in New China“, is worth a listen:

Are young Chinese liberalizing as China’s political leaders crack down? | Public Radio International:

“For many people in the cities, in this burgeoning middle class, and for many young people who already have a lot of the opportunities which those young people 20 years ago would not have had, the question is not now, ‘how can I get rich?’ The question is, ‘what now?,'” he says. “And that’s the big question for China as well. What now? What do we do now that we are becoming a rich country and a powerful country?”

Comment: I would not assume the Communist Party is not up to the task. 

7. John Garnaut On The United Front Down Under

Comment: John Garnaut, once one of the best connected journalists in Beijing, then an advisor to Australian Prime Minister Turnbull, is now out of government and talking openly about some of his work to document Chinese Communist Party influence in Australia. I had lunch with John earlier this summer and let’s just say that every Western government should invite him in for a chat…

Our universities are a frontline in China’s ideological wars | John Garnaut:

The liberal values of freedom, equality and individual dignity are under greater strain in China than they have been for decades.

The room for rational debate and open, evidence-based critical inquiry is shrinking.

And the political rewards for blind patriotism – a racialised patriotism that conflates “the motherland” with “the party” – are high and rising.

The challenge for the democratic world is that Xi’s deepening struggle against liberal values does not end at China’s borders.

To the contrary, Xi has been rebuilding and reinvigorating the old revolutionary machinery – core institutions like the United Front Work Department and its myriad platforms – to export his ideological battle to the world.

Australian professors and universities are being shamed into apologizing for offending Chinese students — Quartz:

These incidents don’t quite compare in scale to Cambridge University Press’s initial decision to censor an academic journal in China, or the Chinese consulate’s attempts to quash a forum (paywall) at the University of Sydney discussing the Tiananmen Square massacre. But they suggest that even within the semi-private confines of their classrooms, professors will now increasingly fear the consequences of saying anything that might offend their Chinese students.

Comment: And heaven forbid offending the red hot patriotic cash cows whose money flows so abundantly in Australia

8. Great Wall Of Trees Meets Great Wall of Sand Equals Great Boondoggle?

China’s Crazy Plan to Keep Sand From Swallowing the World – Mother Jones:

The Communist Party has promoted tree planting as a righteous cause, even a civic duty, for decades, but the Green Great Wall is staggeringly ambitious: By 2050, the government intends to plant 88 million acres of forests in a belt nearly 3,000 miles long and up to 900 miles wide in places..

In any case, the Green Great Wall’s long-term ecological effects may take decades to reveal themselves. Local data on the environmental and socioeconomic changes the project has already wrought is “often not available or unreliable,” explains a 2014 study by American and Chinese scientists. Another study, from the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Beijing Normal University, notes “there is surprisingly little unassailable evidence” to support claims that “the afforestation has successfully combated desertification and controlled dust storms.”

AnchorBusiness, Economy And Trade

China’s Equity-Market Underdogs Could End The Year In Front – Bloomberg Perennially dogged by the higher valuations demanded onshore, mainland stocks came under further pressure in 2017 as Beijing’s deleveraging drive and anxiety over the yuan saw Chinese cash head overseas. But those Asia-leading gains have whittled away at the discount that made offshore stocks so enticing, and China’s currency is strengthening, a turnaround that’s fueling a phoenix-from-the-ashes revival in what is the world’s second-largest share market.

China Sets Yuan Midpoint Against Dollar at One-Year High – Caixin Global The People’s Bank of China (PBOC) set the yuan’s central parity rate at 6.6102 against the dollar, an appreciation from Tuesday’s 6.6293 and its strongest level since Aug. 17, 2016. The yuan, which depreciated about 6.6% against the dollar in 2016, has strengthened more than 4% so far this year as Beijing’s efforts to combat capital outflows and boost confidence in the Chinese currency have taken effect.

Ex-Senior Official at Economic Planning Agency Sentenced Over Bribes – Caixin Global Cao Changqing was found guilty of profiting from his job as the head of the National Development and Reform Commission’s (NRDC) price-setting bureau and of taking bribes between 2007 and 2014 from a state-owned construction company and several power firms, among others.

Some Huishan Dairy Creditors Escalate Opposition to Restructuring Plan – Caixin Global More than a dozen financial institutions in northeastern China have accepted the initial debt restructuring plan drafted by Shenzhen Fuhai Yintao Asset Management, an adviser appointed by the dairy firm to negotiate with creditors, sources told Caixin. However, a group of 189 individual investors organized by Gopher Asset Management, one of Huishan’s creditors, said they would reject any restructuring plan in which Yang continues to have control of Huishan.

China-backed fund to decide whether to take deal to Trump: sources – Reuters Buyout firm Canyon Bridge Capital Partners has spent close to eight months trying unsuccessfully to persuade the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), which scrutinizes deals for potential national security threats, to clear the deal.

China’s Central Bank Visits US on Blockchain Research Trip – CoinDesk The trip saw Yao Qian, director of the People’s Bank of China’s Digital Currency Research Institute, as well as delegates from fintech research bodies such as Shanghai New Financial Research Institute (SFI) and Peking University Digital Finance Research Center (IDF) meet with local startups from August 23 to 24.

China’s $2 Trillion of Shadow Lending Throws Focus on Rust Belt – Bloomberg By analyzing 237 Chinese banks, many of them small and unlisted regional lenders, Bedford casts a new spotlight on underground financing and the risks it poses to the nation’s $35 trillion banking industry. Shadow loans grew almost 15 percent to 14.1 trillion yuan ($2.3 trillion) by December from a year earlier, equal to about 19 percent of economic output, he estimates.

In China, to snag a new home buyers may need to pay huge price for parking space “There’s a price cap on apartments, but not on parking spaces, so we’re bundle-selling them with apartments to compensate,” said a Shanghai-based developer who declined to be identified due to the sensitivity of the issue. “Recently we sold parking spaces in Xiamen for over 1 million yuan each. Last year one only cost less than 200,000,” he said, referring to spaces in the port city in Fujian province in southeastern China.

China to Delay Rollout of New-Energy Car Quota Program: Source – Caixin Global The plan was originally set to take effect next year. It involves a system that awards points to companies based on the percentage of their vehicles that meet certain emission standards. But now the rollout of the plan will be pushed back by a year to take effect in 2019, a source close to the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), which oversees the sector, told Caixin.

Alibaba-Backed Logistics Provider Raises IPO Target – Caixin Global Best, which also goes by the name of Best Logistics, said it now plans to raise up to $1 billion through its upcoming listing, according to an updated prospectus filed with the U.S. securities regulator on Tuesday. That represents a major increase from an original $750 million target disclosed in the company’s first public filing in June and several subsequent filings.

China turns rural land into rental housing for the first time to stabilise property prices | South China Morning Post “The scheme is introduced to mainly address the living problem of the massive populations of migrant workers in big cities, including the 200 million who now live in inner-city slums or suburban villages, and the six to seven million who live on construction sites,” said Tao Ran, a Renmin University professor of China’s rural land issue studies. . 稳房价再出大招 13个热点城市村集体可盖租赁房给新市民 

China’s Big Banks Beat Profit Estimates as Bad Loans Curbed – Bloomberg China’s economic recovery has bolstered the banks, which, along with China Construction Bank Corp., control about a third of the nation’s $36 trillion of banking assets. What’s more, as interbank lenders, their interest margins have benefited from the government’s campaign against financial leverage, which has driven up the rates that banks pay to borrow from each other.

No Big Apple for China’s Top Rail-Equipment Maker – Caixin Global CRRC was informed over the last few days that a bid it was making jointly with Canada’s Bombardier Inc. to supply 1,000 rail cars to New York’s subway operator had been eliminated from the competition, a source close to CRRC told Caixin on Wednesday, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

China Steps Up Supervision of Policy Lenders – Caixin Global As part of stepped-up regulation of the banking sector, the China Banking Regulatory Commission released draft guidelines late Monday for the Export-Import Bank of China (Exim Bank) and the Agricultural Development Bank of China (ADB). The commission will collect public comments on the two draft rules till Sept. 27. It is the first time for China to draft specific rules regarding the governance, management, risk control and business operations of its policy lenders. A source close to the CBRC said separate draft of guidelines for the China Development Bank (CDB), the largest policy lender, will be issued soon.

China launches anti-dumping probe into EU, US and Singapore rubber imports – CGTN China’s Ministry of Commerce on Wednesday announced the launch of anti-dumping investigations into imported hydrogenated butyl rubber from the United Sates, the European Union and Singapore.

雄安新区部分房租暴涨400% 推出租赁市场最严管控_网易新闻 Comment: Xiongan rents up 400% since the new zone announced…bigger question is who knew about the plans ahead of time and bought land there?

AnchorPolitics And Law

Urumqi Officials Confirm Security Checks For Uyghur, Kazakh Vehicle Registrants – RFA Authorities in the capital of northwestern China’s Xinjiang region are requiring all ethnic Uyghur and Kazakh individuals to undergo a stringent background check before registering a vehicle in the city, official sources have confirmed.// Comment: Next up, biometric ignition system to limit only approved drivers, and mandatory beidou system so vehicle location and speed can be monitored?

Xi stresses commitment to deepening reform – Xinhua Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, made the remarks at the 38th meeting of the Central Leading Group for Deepening Overall Reform, which he heads.

舆情专家王洪波谈危机应对:五大环节哪个最关键? Comment: Official from the People’s Daily Online Public Opinion Monitoring Center discusses the key links in crisis response work

Provisions on the Management of Internet Post Comments Services – ChinaLawTranslate Article 7: Post comment service providers and their staffs must not interfere with public opinion by employing methods such as selective deletion or recommendation of post comments so as to obtain improper benefit or on the basis of mistaken value orientations. Post comment service providers and users must not use software, employment agencies, personnel,or other methods to disseminate information, disrupting the normal order of post comments, and misguiding public opinion.

2010: The Art of Guiding Public Opinion — How Leading Cadres Handle the Media 舆论引导艺术 — 领导干部如何面对媒体 | 高大伟 David Cowhig’s Translation Blog Comment: Useful summary, book by Ren Xianliang, now deputy head of the Cyberspace Administration. 7 years on looks like a bit of a roadmap, another indicator that the Internet crackdown under Xi actually a continuation of efforts begun under Hu  //  The Internet threatens Chinese national security to a certain extent p. 99 “Western enemy forces use the Internet extensively to westernize and divide China. They are constantly using websites as bases of false information to slander China. “They slander the socialist system, slander the leadership of the Communist Party, and despise the people’s democratic dictatorship. They encourage China to adopt a political system with a tripartite separation of powers, and competitive multiple parties. They use websites and in cooperation with certain people within China attack Chinese legal arrangements for nationalities and religions and China’s legal system. They make accusations against Chinese news and publications system, apply pressure to China to eliminate the newspaper registration system (baojin) , and the restrictions against unapproved websites and political parties. Their ultimate goal is the overthrow of the leadership of the Communist Party and the shattering of the socialist system.”

AnchorForeign And Defense Affairs

President Xi to chair BRICS Xiamen summit on Sept. 3-5 – Xinhua The Chinese Foreign Ministry on Wednesday announced that Chinese President Xi Jinping is to chair BRICS Xiamen Summit in China’s southeastern coastal city of Xiamen in Fujian Province from Sept. 3 to 5. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lu Kang said that Xi will also chair the Dialogue of Emerging Markets and Developing Countries on mutually beneficial cooperation for common development.

Ahead of Modi’s visit, China sees huge potential for cooperation – Reuters Xi and Modi are expected to hold talks on the summit sidelines in the southeastern city of Xiamen, officials in New Delhi said. That has raised hopes they will try and repair a relationship that has deteriorated as the two countries find their interests diverge – and often clash – while competing for influence across Asia.

President Xi transforms China’s diplomacy – Global Times Major-Country Diplomacy, a six-episode documentary series, began broadcasting on Monday, displaying China’s achievements in diplomacy and its change in strategy since the 18th National Congress of Communist Party of China (CPC) in 2012. The series, jointly produced by the Publicity Department of the CPC Central Committee, Xinhua News Agency and China Central Television, is available on both TV and new media platforms.

新华社、解放军报推出长篇纪实:政治建军,固本开新永向前 – 中国军网 Comment: Xinhua and PLA Daily jointly publishes a second large article documenting Xi’s PLA reform efforts

Is the United States Still the Predominant Power in the Pacific? | ChinaFile Conversation Dennis J. Blasko, James Holmes, Joel Wuthnow

China Must Help the White House Save Trump From Himself – Carnegie Endowment for International Peace – Doug Paal President Xi Jinping and China would be well advised to work constructively with the reasonable people around the Trump administration to reinforce their ability to cocoon Trump from himself. The hardline trade trio of Lighthizer, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross and erstwhile trade advisor Peter Navarro are all still in place and planning to reverse America’s deficits. Their target remains China.

Engineer Szuhsiung “Allen” Ho, operative of China, faces sentencing – USA Today Ho, his firm Energy Technology International, and Chinese nuclear power plant China General Nuclear Power were indicted in April 2016 in an alleged plot to lure nuclear experts in the U.S. into providing information to allow China to develop and produce nuclear material based on American technology and below the radar of the U.S. government. It is the first such case in the nation brought under a provision of law that regulates the sharing of U.S. nuclear technology with certain countries deemed too untrustworthy to see it. Those countries include China.

奋力开拓中国特色大国外交新局面–时政–人民网 Comment: Wang Yi extols  Xi Jinping’s “Diplomatic Thought” in an interview with the People’s Daily. Promotion ahead?

[独家V观]7小时惊险营救 中国海军击溃索马里海盗_新闻_央视网( Comment: rousing CCTV video of PLAN rescue of ship taken over by Somali pirates

Chinese migrants lead US agents to San Diego border tunnel – AP: Dozens of migrants fleeing from Border Patrol agents led authorities to a surprising discovery over the weekend: A tunnel under the US-Mexico border in San Diego used to bring Chinese nationals illegally into the United States.

AnchorHong Kong, Macao And Taiwan

Hong Kong Investors May Have to Use Their Real Names When Trading Chinese Stocks – Caixin Global On the Chinese mainland, investors must register with their real names and identification numbers with brokerages before they can trade securities. The aim of this longtime policy is to prevent the capital market from becoming a hotbed of money laundering and other illegal and improper activities. However, in Hong Kong, investors are not required to register with real names or identities.

Stung by reputation, Taiwan looks to turn corner on money laundering – Reuters After Taiwan’s state-run Mega Financial Holding Co was fined $180 million by U.S. authorities for lax enforcement of anti-money-laundering rules at its New York branch, the bank started a rigorous training program for its staff.

AnchorTech And Media

LeEco’s Listed Arm Spills Red Ink for First Time – Caixin Global The company attributed the loss to bad publicity and a tarnished brand, which in recent months has led to a “fluctuation in user loyalty” as well as a substantial drop in advertising and subscription revenues. The average number of unique daily visitors to Leshi’s video-streaming site — which faces tough competitors such as iQiyi, Tencent Holdings Ltd., and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s Youku — fell to 57 million, down from 80 million a year earlier.

Donald Tang, former Bear Stearns money man in China, now wants to remake himself in Hollywood – LA Times His 2-year-old Los Angeles film and TV firm, Tang Media Partners, with investors including Tencent and Sequoia Capital’s Neil Shen, is trying to achieve an elusive goal long pursued by entertainment executives: create a film company that can both succeed in the U.S. and take advantage of the growing entertainment market in China.

3 Ways Didi’s Big Data Is Improving China’s Traffic | the Beijinger Didi uses a data-driven intelligent matching technology to find drivers for riders in a way that maximizes overall transportation for a given area. Red spots show that there is an excess of demand for taxis and private cars, and the green spots show that there is an oversupply of drivers. We visited Didi’s Beijing headquarters and talked to Paul Wang Zhanwei, a data analyst working on Didi’s urban transportation program. Here are three ways Didi is helping to solve China’s traffic problem:

China regulator said to be reviewing antitrust complaint against Apple | South China Morning Post Beijing-based law firm Daxiao said earlier this month it filed complaints on the developers’ behalf to the SAIC and the National Development and Reform Commission. The lawyers accused Apple of removing apps without a proper explanation and taking an excessive 30 per cent cut of in-app transactions, it said in an August 8 statement. The law firm represents close to 50 developers, producing games and a number of other apps, according to its managing partner Lin Wei.

Toutiao Reportedly Poaches Over 300 Content Creators From Online Q&A Community Zhihu | Yicai Global “Toutiao has signed over 300 big-Vs from Zhihu this year and offered them annual incomes higher than those of ordinary white-collar workers,” The Paper quoted a netizen as saying on WeChat yesterday. “Big-Vs who have signed the agreements are banned from publishing their content on Zhihu.”

Apple App Store’s Chinese Customers Get New Way to Pay for Purchases – WSJ Tencent’s WeChat Pay is the latest major Chinese mobile-payment service to get the U.S. tech giant’s approval for the online store

China’s facial recognition tech gaining ground – Global Times The facial recognition market scale is expected to reach $6.84 billion by 2021, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.3 percent, according to a report released by the global market consultancy MarketsandMarkets in November 2016. The market is expected to be given further impetus from huge governmental investments in security and surveillance infrastructure, as well as increased public awareness, the report noted. In China, the market scale for facial recognition technology surpassed 1 billion yuan ($152 million) in 2016, and the CAGR will reach 25 percent, pushing the market to a scale of 5.1 billion yuan by 2021, according to a report published by Beijing-based market research firm Qianzhan. // Comment: The Surveillance-Industrial Complex is Big and Getting Much Bigger

China Tech IPOs Surge in First Half – Caixin Global Specifically, 19 IPOs were completed in China’s A-share main board market, with a fundraising of 10.8 billion yuan, 41% of the total funds raised. The Shenzhen Small & Medium Enterprise Board and the Shenzhen Growth Enterprise Board saw 12 and 27 IPOs respectively.

AnchorSociety, Art, Sports, Culture And History

Alibaba Billionaire Tsai Buys Indoor Lacrosse Team in San Diego – Bloomberg Tsai has a long history with lacrosse — he played at Yale in the 1980s — but the NLL may also be a precursor to other American sports investments. Those who consider buying a major U.S. sports franchise often start with a less expensive investment in a smaller league as a learning experience and proving ground, and Tsai has expressed an interest in buying a stake of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets.

David Tang: the colourful life of the man behind Hong Kong’s fashion brand with a Shanghai twist | South China Morning Post The success of the meeting sealed ties between Tang and Tsui, who together partnered the China Club at the Bank of China Building in 1991. The club featured Tsui’s large collections of Chinese art and Tang’s knack for retro Shanghainese design with a modern touch, later to inspire fashion chain Shanghai Tang in 1994. The club and the fashion label became Tang’s twin towers, earning him global fame and recognition, a momentum which he maintained even after Shanghai Tang changed hands in 1998.

Remains of 19th-Century Chinese Laborers Found at a Pyramid in Peru | Smithsonian Between 1849 and 1874, more than 100,000 workers traveled from China to Peru, where they faced discrimination and abuse

AnchorEnergy, Environment, Science And Health

Scarred landscapes, piles of rubble and polluted waters… how illegal mining left a trail of devastation across a Chinese nature reserve | South China Morning Post Parts of Sanjiangyuan National Nature Reserve in Qinghai, west China, have reportedly been devastated by illegal mining. 三江源“伤口”未愈 盗采矿点待修复 

Through Legal Gap, App Helps Women Buy Unapproved HPV Vaccine – Sixth Tone Gardasil 9, the most potent vaccine against the virus that causes cervical cancer, is not officially available in China.

China’s war on smog shakes up ports; Tianjin loses, rivals benefit – Reuters Tianjin Port Development Holdings Ltd said late on Tuesday it would move to expand its containerized volumes following a big drop in coal and steel cargoes after a ban earlier this year on using trucks at the port to transport coal, part of Beijing’s battle with pollution.

Quick Take: China Wants to Wring the Swing Out of Coal Prices – Caixin Global The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) has proposed a rule that seeks to control the maximum and minimum coal stockpiles of companies. This will be determined by the price of coal, a company’s location, transportation conditions, and the specific time of the year.

AnchorFood And Travel

Economic Watch: Booming tourism aids Tibet’s green growth – Xinhua With the backdrop of the Himalayas and the Yarlung Zangbo River at its front, the Hilton Nyingchi Resort in the city of Nyingchi in Tibet has added a modern touch to the region. The Hilton is the first international brand resort in Nyingchi and the Hilton Group’s first hotel in Tibet.

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