"Sinocism is the Presidential Daily Brief for China hands"- Evan Osnos, New Yorker Correspondent and National Book Award Winner
THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT
1. Chinese President leaves for visit to Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus – Xinhua wonder what big silk road announcement there will be in Kazakhstan // Chinese President Xi Jinping left Beijing on Thursday afternoon for a visit to Kazakhstan, Russia and Belarus. Xi’s visit to Kazakhstan is at the invitation of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev. At the invitation of Russian President Vladimir Putin, Xi will visit Russia from May 8 to 10 and attend the ceremony to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the victory of the Great Patriotic War in Moscow. Xi will pay a state visit to Belarus from May 10 to 12 at the invitation of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. Xi’s entourage includes his wife Peng Liyuan; Wang Huning, member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and director of the Policy Research Office of the CPC Central Committee; Fan Changlong, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Vice Chairman of China’s Central Military Commission; Li Zhanshu, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee and director of the General Office of the CPC Central Committee; and State Councilor Yang Jiechi.
Related: Xi Seeks to Advance Trade Route to Europe During Eurasia Tour – Bloomberg Business Xi’s strategy of expanding Chinese interests through the former Soviet states of central Asia could potentially clash with President Putin’s plans for a Eurasian Economic Union, and undermine a recent renaissance in Sino-Russian relations, according to Bobo Lo, author of “Russia and the New World Disorder” to be published in June. “The Silk Road, though its an infrastructure idea, is about the promotion and expansion of Chinese interests, which leaves a clear conflict of interests with Putin’s own Eurasian Economic Union,” Lo, an associate at Chatham House in London, said in a March interview in Hong Kong. “They haven’t directly clashed because they are both nascent ideas, but give it time.”
Related: 解放军三军仪仗队高唱《喀秋莎》通过红场(图)_凤凰资讯 video of PLA honor guard practicing singing “Katyusha” for upcoming Moscow parade
2. 收评：沪指重挫近3%逼近4100点 两市逾50股跌停财经腾讯网 Shanghai Composite drops again (as I predicted it would in Monday’s newsletter), closes at 4112.21…the recent propaganda about a “slow” and “rational” bull market along with continued steps to rein in margin financing and rumors of even harsher measures have punters clearly taking a bit of a break. But we are near a 10% correction from the top, bet that if it drops much closer to 4000 there will be a sharp snapback as people don’t want to miss out on the next leg up in the Xi Jinping bull market…the propaganda is still very much weighted towards the market is going to go up, just not so crazily…stock market with Chinese characteristics…
Related: A股受暴跌洗礼 新华社连发四文论慢牛 | 每经网 节前的4月28日，面对A股疯牛行情，证监会罕见地在盘中为股市紧急降温——年内第八次提醒股市风险。节后，新华社、人民日报、央视新闻同时警示A股风险。再加上市场传闻有券商自昨日（5月5日）起，对近期涨幅过大的创业板股票和“中”字头股票的融资进行控制。再加上新股申购等诸多利空因素的叠加，导致了昨日的暴跌，而市场未来调整的概率也已然加大。// On the four recent official media pieces about a “slow” bull market
Related: 两融传闻遭澄清 广发：逢低买入6券商股_证券时报网 “两融余额不得超净资本4倍”系误读 证金公司建议“精细化”管理
Related: 银行开始收伞操作 个贷资金违规入市将严查-银行频道-和讯网 “现在有监管部门已经开始调查股份制银行是否存在资金违规入市的情况，不少分行网点已经收到检查通知。”据银行业内人士透露，目前银行入市渠道多元化，资金规模也较庞大，监管层已经开始注意到这方面的动向，要求对银行资金尤其是贷款去向进行严格监管。“对一些有结构化特点的产品融资进行限制，有些同业拆借的资金也需要进行资金流向的管控，此前伞形信托产品或夹层基金产品的资金提供方正是银行方面的资金。”深圳某私募人士表示。
Related: 证监会再议两融 控杠杆意图明显金融频道财新网 证监会主席助理张育军在上海就规范券商两融业务出席座谈，会议内容流出后立刻引起市场各方关注。透明度高的两融风险尚且可控，但是市场的全部杠杆风险并未揭示出来
Related: China Stock Alarms Get Louder as Morgan Stanley Ends Bullish Bet – Bloomberg Business Jonathan Garner, the chief Asia and emerging market strategist at Morgan Stanley, downgraded Chinese stocks for the first time in more than seven years on Thursday, citing the weakest corporate profits since 2009. BNP Paribas has sold some Chinese shares listed in Hong Kong on concern about ballooning mainland margin debt and the growing mismatch between equity prices and a deteriorating economy. // So Morgan Stanley has been bullish on Chinese stocks since 2008? Talk about being in the wilderness…
3. 总理考察 “中关村”大涨4.25%新闻腾讯网 Li Keqiang takes to the streets of Zhongguancun, Beijing to visit high-tech startups and preach the benefits of innovation and entrepreneurship. The Premier’s propaganda profile seems to have risen significantly since the NPC meeting in March, I am open to guidance (but not so much guesses, I have plenty of those) on exactly why…video
4. Premier ridicules “prove your mother is your mother” government regulations – Xinhua Chinese Premier Li Keqiang harshly criticized the country’s excessive regulation and red tape on Wednesday, ridiculing that a citizen was even asked to prove “your mother is your mother” when obtaining a government permit. “How ridiculous! The citizen only intended to go travelling abroad and take a vacation,” Li was quoted as saying Wednesday at a State Council executive meeting on the cabinet’s website. “I wonder whether these government departments are caring for the public or intentionally obstructing them.” Further demonstrating his point, Li cited another story in which a model worker from southernmost province of Hainan had to acquire eight stamps from the government before attending a high-level event in Beijing. Only after a senior official from the provincial government stepped in was he successful.
Related: 李克强痛斥某些办事机构：办个事儿咋就这么难？-新华网 “我看到有家媒体报道，一个公民要出国旅游，需要填写‘紧急联系人’，他写了他母亲的名字，结果有关部门要求他提供材料，证明‘你妈是你妈’！”总理的话音刚落，会场顿时笑声一片。“这怎么证明呢？简直是天大的笑话！人家本来是想出去旅游，放松放松，结果呢？”李克强说，“这些办事机构到底是出于对老百姓负责的态度，还是在故意给老百姓设置障碍？”
Related: 经济参考网 – 改革推进落实遭遇“软抵抗” 改革事项凑数上报 审批下放玩数字游戏 自中央部署全面深化改革以来，改革正在各个层面渐次铺开，多个领域取得突破和进展。但与此同时，改革在实践操作中也表现出不少困难和障碍。《经济参考报》记者在多地调研时，不少基层干部和专家学者认为，当前在改革推进过程中，一些地方和部门存在“形式化”和“任务化”倾向，局部利益和部门体制分割对改革推进形成了障碍。未来五年，不仅应规划发展，更要规划改革，对目前改革中存在的问题进行系统梳理，将有助于改革的总体考量和具体设计。
5. Are Those Green Shoots We’re Seeing in China? – Bloomberg Business green shoots in China? Yes and no seems to be the best answer. “We expect April’s economic data to show signs of a tentative stabilization,” UBS Group economists led by Wang Tao wrote in a note this week. “Although the sharp slide in March’s real activity has likely been arrested, further policy support would be needed if growth were to get close to this year’s target of 7%.”
Related: Early Look: China Economy Likely Recuperated A Bit in April – China Real Time Report – WSJ Growth in China’s industrial production likely rebounded slightly in April from a more than six-year-low in March, a survey of 12 economists by The Wall Street Journal showed. In the meantime, growths in fixed-asset investment and retail sales likely held steady, they said. The economy is “still weak, but green shoots are emerging,” Larry Hu, an economist at Macquarie Group MQG.AU -0.49%, said in a research note. “The initial recovery is likely to be pretty sluggish.”
If you value Sinocism, feel free to donate some money, with Bitcoin or a credit card. Thanks.
6. China to Get Tougher on Eco-unfriendly Officials – China Digital Times (CDT) A document released by the cabinet on Tuesday said the consumption of resources, environmental damage and ecological competitiveness would all be carefully assessed by officials and their weight would be “significantly increased” so that the pursuit of economic growth would no longer be the only target of cadres. Local governments at all levels now faced a “red line”, the document said, which meant they would need to ensure that there was no further deterioration in the quality of air, water and soil in their respective regions. Any official that was found to have caused severe damage to the environment and natural resources would be held accountable – even after they had left the posts – and would no longer gain promotion
Related: 干部任期内若严重破坏环境 终身追责经济频道财新网 作为落实生态文明建设的顶层设计和总体部署，近日中共中央、国务院印发了《关于加快推进生态文明建设的意见》（以下简称《意见》），明确了生态文明建设任务与2020年要完成的主要目标。落实层面上，《意见》 提出健全政绩考核制度，建立干部任期生态文明建设责任制，作为全国性文件首次提出对造成资源环境生态严重破坏的干部实行终身追责。
Related: 人民网评：再漠视“三毒”排放就要掉乌纱了！–观点–人民网 事关民族前途命运，政府责任重于泰山，绝不能向任何人、任何企业网开一面。有谁胆敢碰触底线，就要付出丢掉乌纱甚至触犯法网的代价。 这份《关于加快推进生态文明建设的意见》的出台，有望成为行之有效、具备可操作性的逼退环境污染的制度杀手锏，或将成为还我“美丽中国”的重大转折和关键节点。 清风朗月，碧水蓝天，或将不再是国人的奢望……
7. China Focus: Water pollution treatment open for trillions yuan of private investment – Xinhua China is expected to roll out a string of supportive policies to encourage private investment for developing projects worth of millions of dollars, according to sources from the state environment watchdog. China’s Ministry of Finance (MOF) and the Ministry of Environmental Protection (MOEP) are considering polices to promote public-private-partnership (PPP) in addressing water pollution, the sources told Xinhua after they jointly released the implementation opinions regulating the PPP mode for water pollution prevention and control on Wednesday.
Related: 经济参考网 – 水污染治理迎民资或启万亿市场 财政、税收、信贷等具体政策将出，将推新的金融产品和服务 记者6日从环保部获悉，作为《水污染防治行动计划》实施细则的重要组成部分，财政部、环保部正在酝酿一系列鼓励政策，促进和规范水污染防治领域政府和社会资本合作，并逐步将水污染防治领域全面向社会资本开放。 多位专家在接受《经济参考报》记者采访时预测，随着国家水污染治理领域对社会资本逐步开放，国家环保投入资金将会以倍数效应放大，有望撬动万亿市场。
8. Courts in China Face Balancing Act on Domestic Abuse – NYTimes Three days after suspending a previous death sentence on Li Yan, a battered woman who killed her husband in 2010 in a case that attracted attention around the world, Judge Feng Wei’s work was not yet done. He still had to ensure social stability. So on Monday, April 27, the first working day after a court in Anyue County, in the southwestern province of Sichuan, announced the revised sentence, Judge Feng, the presiding judge in the case, telephoned Ms. Li’s brother, Li Dehuai, according to Wan Miaoyan, Ms. Li’s lawyer.
BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE
不止42万亿 京津冀或撬动百万亿投资要闻一财网 estimates of 42 trillion in investment for the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei integration may be low, could top 100 Trillion-CBN // 42万亿元投资主要是针对基础设施建设，未来，加上能源、产业流动等带来的投资效应，京津冀可能撬动的资本将达百万亿元。
PBOC Raises Yuan Fixing to 14-Month High as Asia Currencies Drop – Bloomberg Business China’s central bank raised the yuan’s daily reference rate to the strongest level in 14 months, bolstering support for the currency as signs the global economy is losing momentum sap demand for emerging-market assets. The People’s Bank of China boosted the fixing by 0.07 percent to 6.1113 per dollar, surpassing a previous high of 6.1137 that was set in December. The yuan fell 0.06 percent in Shanghai, less than the 0.24 percent decline in the Bloomberg-JPMorgan Asia Dollar Index.
社评：不应对楼继伟清华发言过度引申评论环球网 财政部长楼继伟4月24日参加清华经管学院的一个论坛时讲了一番话，在互联网上激起轩然大波，直到现在未能平息。我们认为有必要就此谈一些看法。 楼继伟发言的基本内容是，如果中国下大力气进行结构改革和调整，中期增长有可能达到6.5%-7%。同时中国面临着另一种前景，即“今后的五年十年，滑入中等收入陷阱的可能性非常大，我甚至觉得是五五开”。他总结道，“三中全会、四中全会确定下来的决定性任务，如果到2020年我们按时完成了，我认为是可以跨越中等收入陷阱的。” 楼继伟似乎表达了一些可被一些人理解成“悲观的”看法，但他的核心意思更像是想强调改革的重要性，让听他发言的人支持三中、四中全会确定的改革目标。// Global Times tells people to not overreact to Lou Jiwei’s comments about possibility of middle income trap
经纬张颖：经纬用美元投资的公司，有四成正在拆VIE结构准备回国-看点-虎嗅网 Matrix VC tells Huxiu that 40% of the Chinese firms they have invested in with USD and a VIE structure are now undoing the VIE structure…the lure of a local listing is strong now, especially after Baofeng Tech, which was originally a VIE, restructured and listed in Shenzhen, and was limit up for the first 29-30 trading days after its IPO, giving it an insane valuation
Regulatory reforms stalled | China Accounting Blog | Paul Gillis In a related matter, VIE reforms are now working their way through China’s legislative process. The proposed new foreign investment law makes it clear that foreign controlled VIEs are banned, but opens the door to VIEs (and perhaps alternative structures) so long as the foreign company remains under Chinese control. Many of China’s larger internet companies have structures in place to keep control in Chinese hands. Others may need to restructure to continue to operate, or else seek special permission. Multinational corporations that use the VIE structure may have greater difficulties. The US Chamber of Commerce, the American Chamber of Commerce in China and the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai jointly asked China to provide grandfathering for existing VIEs or a 25-year grace period
Chinese authorities visit Uber’s Chengdu office | Reuters The visit is the second made by authorities to Uber’s China offices in the last week. The official Xinhua news agency said on Friday Guangzhou authorities raided Uber’s office there on suspicion of an “unlicensed operation”. “A few of our departments visited Uber’s offices to conduct interviews or an investigation,” the spokeswoman, who gave only her surname, said on Thursday. Ren said she did not know the details of the investigation. A spokeswoman for Uber in China said the visit was routine, citing a statement from the Transport Committee of Chengdu quoted by Chinese media. She did not provide more details.
China lets more government firms trade commodities derivatives overseas – sources | Reuters China has more than tripled the number of central government owned firms allowed to trade commodities derivatives overseas without regulator approval, sources told Reuters, in a move that will give China more clout in global markets for metals, energy and agricultural products. Roughly 100 more large government-backed Chinese companies will be permitted to trade in international futures, swaps and options markets, according to three sources with direct knowledge of the changes. It marks the biggest expansion of the list in nearly 10 years.
Buffett’s Chinese fans make Omaha pilgrimage to see the sage – FT.com Among the tens of thousands of wannabe Warren Buffetts who converged on Omaha last weekend to listen to his utterances on his 50th anniversary at Berkshire Hathaway were a crowd of Chinese investors, eager to learn the secrets of growing rich in the heartland of capitalism. The delegation — double last year’s size at 2,000-strong, according to Chinese media — ranged from Zhang Lei, founder of Beijing-based Hillhouse Capital, a $20bn fund established with help from the Yale endowment a decade ago, to a group of less prominent investors put together by Youhe Invest, an investment advisor.
Shanghai Exchange Money Rate Triples as IPOs Fuel Cash Demand – Bloomberg Business Initial public offerings by 25 companies between May 5 and May 11 could freeze 2.34 trillion yuan ($377 billion) of funds, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Newly-listed shares in China this year have surged an average 44 percent on the first day of trading, the data show, making them an attractive bet for investors. The People’s Bank of China refrained from conducting open-market operations this week.
POLITICS AND LAW
习近平首提“三个有利”标准：争当改革促进派新闻腾讯网 只要“三个有利”，都要服从改革大局 他强调，要教育引导各级领导干部自觉用“四个全面”战略布局统一思想，正确把握改革大局，从改革大局出发看待利益关系调整，只要对全局改革有利、对党和国家事业发展有利、对本系统本领域形成完善的体制机制有利，都要自觉服从改革大局、服务改革大局，勇于自我革命，敢于直面问题，共同把全面深化改革这篇大文章做好。
胡锦涛现身北川新县城高清图集新浪网 slideshow of Hu Jintao visiting Beichuan, Sichuan
安徽教育厅外事处长坠亡 基教处长又曝出被带走新闻腾讯网 五一前后，安徽省教育厅颇不平静，先是该厅外事处处长耿尊芳从办公楼坠亡，接着又曝出基础教育处处长缪富国落马。 澎湃新闻从安徽教育系统多位知情人士处获悉，安徽省教育厅基础教育处处长缪富国，已于4月30日被该省检察机关带走。// another official jumps to his death, this one in Anhui
北京电信一主任花上万元公款按摩嫖娼财经新京报网 王海生在今年1月组织三次公款吃喝及娱乐期间，每次召酒店内设的女性按摩人员为其按摩，其中一次属嫖娼，花费公款1.08万。王海生被开党籍，撤销职务，降为一般员工。// Beijing Telecom official caught partying, getting final fantasy massage, kicked out of party, demoted to “normal worker” status
全国十起人肉搜索案例仅两起追责特别报道新京报网 连日来，“成都别车女司机被当街殴打”一事成为舆论焦点。女司机卢某的大量个人信息遭网友披露，卢某父亲已针对网络上的隐私泄露报警。新京报记者梳理近年来十起人肉搜索案例发现，被人肉者采取法律手段追究责任的仅两例。// only 2 of the top 10 “human flesh search engine” events have led to legal action
人民日报人民论坛：祈福与“种福”–观点–人民网 祈福是一种古老的文化传统。对于普通百姓来说，以祈福来表达对美好生活的虔诚向往，无可厚非。然而，令人警惕的是，有些党员领导干部却痴迷于此，竟将福运寄托于“神灵”的恩赐上。 君不见，“公堂”摆放佛像者有之，家里供着“财神爷”者有之，卧榻内藏“转运石”者有之，请算命先生祈福者有之……把本应清朗的家风政风弄得乌烟瘴气。前些年落马的官员中，有沉溺此道者竟为抢烧名寺的“头炷香”而挥霍公款数十万元。此类官员边贪边求神、边腐边拜佛，终逃不过“其信也妄焉，其倒也必焉”的结局，令人深思和警醒。 与这种祈神赐福判然有别的，是为公“种福”。为他人、为人民、为社会谋福，功在行善举、利百姓、泽后人，德在“为天地立心，为生民立命”，是为官者的天职 // People’s Daily comment goes after officials who pray to Buddha for material benefits
New Zealander Stands Trial in China on Drug Charges – WSJ A 25-year-old New Zealander standing trial on charges of trying to smuggle methamphetamine testified Thursday that he came to China to buy a muscle-building supplement and didn’t check the package he purchased before trying to depart. Peter Gardner, who also has Australian citizenship, was detained in the southern city of Guangzhou on Nov. 8 when police said he was trying to smuggle more than 30 kilograms (66 pounds) of methamphetamine out of China. Gardner could face the death penalty if convicted.
Draft Law: Foreign NGOs Can Open Offices with Approval – China Digital Times (CDT) The Foreign NGO Management Law has undergone a second reading by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, and will now be reviewed and revised before the third reading. The new draft contains a significant change from the first draft, which said that foreign NGOs were not permitted to open local offices in China under any circumstances. In the new reading, foreign NGOs can open offices but only with explicit permission from the State Council
Chairman Mao’s propagandists protest over pensions saying they have been betrayed – Telegraph We worked all those years for the government, the Communist Party, and they haven’t paid us a cent in pension, nor have they given us any explanation,” a protester, named only as Mr Wu, told Radio Free Asia, a US-funded news outlet. Film projectionists played a key role in cementing Communist Party rule in the decades that followed its 1949 takeover. Thousands of mobile propaganda units were sent to rural villages and towns armed with positive messages printed onto reels of 35mm film.
北京人大财经办公室副主任乔瑞被查金融频道财新网 deputy head of Beijing NPC finance and economics office under investigation…corruption crackdown has really not hit Beijing yet, expect that to change, esp with the appointment of the new municipal PSB head // 乔瑞曾任北京农商行董事长、华夏银行副行长等职，这两家银行近期都有其他高管被查
何家弘：聂树斌案的司法包袱如何放下观点频道财新网 Caixin interviews He Jiahong about the Nie Shubin case // 4月28日，山东省高院就聂树斌案是否再审举行听证会，引起全国法律人瞩目。中国人民大学教授、证据法学家何家弘也不例外。日前，他接受了财新记者的专访。他认为，聂树斌案虽然是个沉重的包袱，但处理好了，或许也是提升中国司法公信力、完善纠正冤错案件机制的一个契机。
Details emerge on graft case of singer Wanting Qu’s mother｜WantChinaTimes The mother of Vancouver-based Chinese singer-songwriter Wanting Qu has been painted as a ruthless official who abused her position to rake in millions of illicit funds from the sale of state-owned land, reports the website of the Chinese Economic Daily newspaper. Zhang Mingjie was arrested on April 24 on suspicion of selling state properties below market value for personal gain. An investigation into her activities began last year and she was ousted in November as director of the urban development infrastructure division of Harbin, capital of northeast China’s Heilongjiang province, where her celebrity daughter was born and raised.
FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS
The unforeseen effects of Chinese medicine – FT.com The fact that so many western countries are now in the AIIB could help to restrain Beijing from such excesses.Prof Nye says that the AIIB now will not be “a Chinese political slush fund”. If the UK and others help ensure its projects are more sustainable and sensitive to local needs, they will — whether involuntarily or not — be playing their part in making the bank a more effective tool of diplomacy. Call it Chinese medicine if you will. But from Beijing’s point of view, having western governments help burnish China’s image in Asia must sound pretty close to a definition of soft power.
Meet America’s China-Cozying, Rights-Abusing Ally in the Horn of Africa | Foreign Policy In a May 5 letter obtained by FP, Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Calif.) urged Kerry to call out Guelleh for years of abusing his own people. A 2013 State Department report chronicled 26 pages worth of abuses by Guelleh’s government, a man serving a third term in office after ignoring the Djiboutian constitutional provision that only allows two. The letter also called on Kerry to warn Guelleh to cool growing financial and defense ties between Djibouti and China, including a quiet security and defense agreement signed last year. Beijing has also invested hundreds of million of dollars into port facilities along the Djiboutian coast.
China’s military says some members not taking fight against corruption seriously | South China Morning Post The People’s Liberation Army Daily said cases of lawbreaking were being covered up, sat on or seriously downplayed. It cited an anonymous military prosecutor as saying that an officer from the logistics department, which has emerged as a hotbed of corruption, was involved in a large financial scandal, but was only demoted and then shuffled out the army. “Such cases as this in the forces are not the exception,” the newspaper said. // 军法如刀， 莫让法纪成为“ 稻草人”
High-profile Chinese military officer in graft probe loses job | South China Morning Post Major General Guo Zhenggang was publicly accused by the PLA of suspected graft in March and was the director of the political department in the Zhejiang military district in eastern China. He is the son of Guo Boxiong, the ex-vice chairman of China’s powerful Central Military Commission. Guo junior’s post has been taken Major General Shan Xiuhua
China warns Philippine military planes away from disputed sea area: Manila | Reuters China has warned Philippine air force and navy planes at least six times to leave areas around the disputed South China Sea, the Philippine military commander responsible for the region told a Senate hearing on Thursday. While Vice Admiral Alexander Lopez gave no timeframe, a senior Philippine air force official told Reuters the warnings had come in the past three months.
TECH AND MEDIA
Blip on the screen-China Daily Fans of high-profile Japanese animation series Detective Conan and One Piece were relieved to learn that recent online rumors about the two productions being pulled off major Chinese video streaming websites weren’t correct. But followers of other shows might not be as happy. As many as 62 animated series, according to Tencent News, have either been or are likely to be removed from online channels following an order issued by China’s Ministry of Culture in March. These productions contain scenes that the ministry believes “glamorize violence, salacity and terrorism activities” and “threaten social morals”. Some 19 video websites, including Tudou, Youku and iQiyi, have been asked to remove identified series.
Qiku stirs up crowded smartphone market-China Daily Internet magnate Zhou Hongyi threw his hat into the smartphone ring on Wednesday and promised fans “exquisitely made” handsets that will surpass Xiaomi Corp both in quality and price. “I understand selling smartphones in China is a red ocean market, actually it is an ocean full of blood,” Zhou said. The red ocean is used to describe a market packed with players and one in which profit margins are wafer-thin.
三场手机秀背后 谁才是赢家?–百度百家 : 这场几个国内手机厂商玩家的PK，最终不过是一场虚张声势的营销秀，只是玩法和风格不同而已；小米Note顶配版属于二次发布，而“奇酷”手机出了这两个字，还看不到影。背后谁才是真正的赢家？// worthwhile read for journalists and bloggers who cover the mobile phone launches in China, could be helpful for increasing skepticism
Chinese real estate site Aiwujiwu closes $120M series D Aiwujiwu is a rental and second-hand home listing portal and transaction platform. The site allows for easy location-based visualization and searches, and many of its listings include video tours. It acts as a kind of virtual agent, allowing you to do things like book visits via your smartphone. Aiwujiwu charges a 1% commission for home sales, but its rental services are free. Aiwujiwu is a relatively new platform but funding has come thick and fast, with undisclosed series A, B, and C rounds all having been closed within the past year
Alibaba, Tencent Expand into Innovative Access – Caixin Two of China’s largest Internet companies, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Tencent Holdings Ltd., have responded to Chinese government calls for more online innovation by expanding into local government and business incubator services. In many areas of public service, from public transit information portals to online marriage license registration services, Tencent and Alibaba have been competing fiercely for local government contracts. Tencent now offers options for paying utility bills, making doctor appointments and accessing public security and tax information to the public through its WeChat messaging application in the cities of Guangzhou, Shanghai, Wuhan, Foshan and Shenzhen. The company recently signed agreements with local governments in 11 other cities for similar services that are expected to launch soon.
SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY
陕西洛川警方通报男童遭精神病人殴打详情-新华网 perhaps the most disturbing video I have ever seen, a guy in Yan’an walks up to a not quite three year old boy and kicks and stomps him. Kid is in the hospital, reports say injuries not threatening, guy in custody, reports say he has mental illness…the video hit my wechat this afternoon, all over weibo too. here is the video, not for the faint of heart
昆明奔驰司机插队被骂 追出数公里后撞死老人新闻腾讯网 近期道路上脾气火爆的真不少，四川变道女司机被暴打的新闻尚在热议中，云南又曝光了一起司机斗气，奔驰车撞死老人的案件。 五一小长假尾声，晚上9点多，在昆明昆石高速阳宗海往昆明方向，一位老人被一辆奔驰车撞倒，不幸身亡，而这起事故却不是一起普通的交通肇事。// another awful incident of road rage
Biggest Uyghur Wedding I’ve Ever Attended (Video) This last month I had the privilege to attend the Uyghur wedding of a friend here in Urumqi, capital of China’s Xinjiang region. This is my 4th Uyghur wedding (I wrote an entire series on Uyghur weddings a few years ago) but this one was by far the biggest I’ve ever seen! Weddings give incredible insight into cultures around the world and the Uyghur culture is no exception. From special dances to beautiful dresses, I hope this video and accompanying description will allow you to experience this part of Uyghur culture even if you never have the opportunity to attend one yourself.
China: Deng Biopic of “Superhero,” ‘Avengers’ to Open on Same Day – Hollywood Reporter A biopic about late Chinese statesman Deng Xiaoping, the leader credited with starting reforms that transformed the country, and a U.S. visit by him will hit Chinese theaters next week. With Chinese being always aware of the importance of symbolism, Mr. Deng Goes to Washington opens on May 15, the same day as Avengers: Age of Ultron, and producers say it’s because Deng, who kick-started economic reforms in China, is a superhero in China.
When Baltimore Shook With Anger, Here’s What China Saw | Foreign Policy Online reaction revealed much about Chinese tension with an influx of African immigrants.
ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH
腾格里沙漠污染案一审宣判 涉事公司被罚500万新闻腾讯网 4月30日，宁夏中卫市沙坡头区人民法院对备受社会各界广泛关注的宁夏明盛染化有限公司(以下简称明盛染化公司)污染环境案作出一审判决。被告单位明盛染化公司犯污染环境罪，被处罚金500万元，被告人廉某某犯环境污染罪被判处有期徒刑一年六个月，缓刑二年，并处罚金5万元。此案是新环保法实施以来，中卫市首起污染环境刑事案件，也是腾格里沙漠被污染事件后首例宣判的案件。
Another Chinese firm punished for polluting desert – Xinhua A chemical factory and its legal representative in northwest China’s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region have been punished for dumping untreated waste in the Tengger Desert. According to a court statement, Mingsheng Dye Chemical Co. in Zhongwei City was fined 5 million yuan (about 817,580 U.S. dollars), and the company’s legal representative, Lian, was given an 18 month sentence with a two-year reprieve and fined 50,000 yuan.
China Said to Probe Ex-Official Who Oversaw Clinical Drug Trials – Bloomberg Business Wang Yu, the former director of the National Health and Family Planning Commission’s bureau of medical administration, is being probed for suspected violations of Communist Party discipline, according to the person, who asked not to be identified because the probe isn’t public. Before retiring last year, Wang was responsible for supervising trials of drugs and medical devices, as well as drafting policies for medical institutions.
China starts building Hualong One pilot nuclear power project – Xinhua The Hualong One technology indicates China’s ascent into the rank of countries with advanced nuclear technology, said Qian Zhimin, general manager of China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC). Xing Ji, chief designer of Hualong One, said China owns the complete intellectual property rights of Hualong One and the launch of the pilot will help pave the way for China’s nuclear power equipment to go global. The Hualong One reactor was jointly designed by two nuclear power giants, China General Nuclear Power Group and CNNC, and passed inspection by a national expert panel in August 2014.
FOOD AND TRAVEL
Annual China-U.S. air passenger trips top 6 mln – Xinhua Some 6.13 million passenger trips were made by air between China and the United States in 2014, the Civil Aviation Administration of China disclosed on Wednesday. The agency expects that number to expand by around 15 percent annually in the coming years on the back of increasing flights between the two countries.
Beijing extends barbecue ban to suburbs – Xinhua Beijing has banned restaurants from operating outdoor barbecues in selected suburban areas, extending a ban on the grills in the center of the city, municipal authorities announced on Wednesday. Restaurant barbecues, which authorities say are a major contributor to smog, are no longer allowed in Tongzhou District and the Yizhuang Economic and Technology Development area, nor in parts of the Mentougou, Fangshan, Shunyi, Daxing, Pinggu and Miyun districts, according to the Beijing Municipal Bureau of City Administration and Law Enforcement. And outdoor barbecues run by restaurants within Beijing’s fourth ring road will continue to be strictly banned, the bureau said, reiterating a restriction first set last May.
北京“垃圾账本”：垃圾管理社会成本99亿 占年财政支出2.1% – 经济观察网 － 专业财经新闻网站 由宋国君带队完成的《中国城市生活垃圾管理状况评估报告》５日在北京发布，该报告利用公开数据对中国主要城市生活垃圾管理状况进行评估。// on the annual costs of Beijing’s Municipal trash management
Chinese man starts bus blaze ‘as protest over home demolition compensation’ | South China Morning Post in Yanjiao, Hebei // A Chinese man suspected of setting fire to a crowded bus in a Beijing suburb on Tuesday reportedly told police he started the blaze to protest about the poor compensation he received after his home was demolished. All the passengers managed to escape from the bus before the flames spread and no one was injured, The Beijing News reported. // 燕郊进京公交纵火犯已被刑拘 因拆迁补偿不满新闻腾讯网
If you like Sinocism please spread the word using this link.
Follow me on Twitter @niubi for updates between newsletters
Send comments/tips/complaints to firstname.lastname@example.org