Beijing earlier conducted an extensive security risk investigation, forcing a large number of its low-end population to move out of the city. The activity caused an uproar in Chinese society and around the world because of the government-led violation of human rights. While the initial reaction is cooling down, the government is continuing to drive the so called low end population out of the capital city.
At the end of last month, in Yanjiao Town, Sanhe City of Hebei Province, which a just a river apart from Tongzhou, the satellite capital of Beijing, the Hebei authorities repeated the closing down of a large number of grassroots businesses and rental properties following the expulsion of a large number of low-end migrant workers. Vendors up to several kilometers along the main avenues and streets have been impacted. A joint law enforcement team composed of seven departments including public security, fire control, and urban management closed down and put a seal on those vendors and rental properties.
The staff of the government office in Sanhe City said it was unclear when the action would end and when the sealed houses would reopen. The local authorities hope that when the locals are ready to go to their homes for the Spring Festival, they will completely remove their work and living fundamentals in the area so they are prevented from coming back after the Spring Festival.
Source: wenxuecity (originally from hk.on.cc), January 13, 2018
People’s Daily published a commentary on its front page calling upon China to take full advantage of the promising historic opportunity it has to realize the “Chinese Dream.” The article is a follow-up to the speech that Xi Jinping gave on January 5 at the seminar on studying and implementing the main ideas of the 19th CPC National Congress, where he stated that China is at a period of promising historic opportunity.
The commentary stated, “(This historic opportunity) is the inevitable change in the world over the centuries. In today’s world, ‘democratic deficits,’ ‘governance deficits,’ and ‘development pitfalls’ have come one after the other. Such issues as polarization between the rich and poor, terrorism, and climate change have been emerging constantly. The international political and economic system dominated by capitalism is displaying multiple disadvantages. The global governance system is undergoing profound changes. A new international order is being built. What’s wrong with the world? Where do humans go? These problems are distressing and confusing to politicians, scholars, and the general public all over the world. However, history has not ended. The practices in China have provided a completely new choice for solving the common problems of mankind. Today, as mankind is becoming a common community of destiny, the world has never been so concerned about China and so much in need of China. This has opened up a vast strategic space for us to adhere to peaceful development and gain advantages.”
“This historic period of opportunity encompasses all dimensions, not only in economic development but also in acceleration of the revolution in science and technology and industry, increasing the influence of Chinese culture. There are also more applause given to China’s wisdom and China’s programs. … From an internal point of view, China’s development has entered the stage of qualitative improvement after the accumulation of quantities and has progressed from a phase of rapid growth to a period of high-quality development. The Chinese wheels are now being driven out of the historical gorges and into the vast waters of the vast sea. From the perspective of the world, ‘a world of chaos’ is in stark contrast to ‘the orderly rule of China.’ The world’s eyes are moving eastward and the scenery of China has become the vision of more and more countries.”
Source: People’s Daily, January 185, 2018
Global Times recently published a commentary right after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Taiwan Travel Act. The Act encourages exchange visits between the United States and Taiwan on “all levels.” If this Act were to be signed into law, it would signal a fundamental change in U.S. Taiwan policies. It would allow high ranking Taiwanese government officials, such as the President, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and the Minister of Defense to visit the United States. The current law in effect, the Taiwan Relations Act, has governed the flexible relationship between the States and Taiwan for decades. It does ban the high-level exchange visits of government officials. Although the Senate has not yet passed the Taiwan Travel Act, the fact that it was even discussed in the House used to be flat out unimaginable. A lot of “power players” in the U.S. wish they could reactivate the Taiwan issue to gamble with China. However, the time for the U.S. to dominate Taiwan Strait affairs has long ended. The new law could lead to a broken balance that would force China to take actions big enough to cause the same level of damage to the U.S. In fact, a potential military move could destroy Taiwan.
Source: Global Times, January 10, 2018
Major Taiwanese news network Liberty Times Network (LTN) recently reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin visited a train cabin manufacturer on January 10. Putin revealed during the visit that he had ordered the Russian Ministry of Transportation to ban the import of China-made train cabins. He also asked the Russian government to budget for purchasing Russian made cabins in order to protect domestic manufacturing and to facilitate the process of exporting Russian train cabins. The Russian federal authorities sponsored a study on train accidents that occurred in the past several years and found a critical part made in China caused most of the accidents. Since last May, the federal government banned the import of some Chinese parts that easily broke due to violation of required manufacturing procedures. In the latest move, Russia has banned the import of all train cabins made in China.
Source: LTN, January 11, 2018
Xinhua recently published a report focusing on China’s observation of how the North Korean media reported the globally watched Inter-Korean Talks on the Winter Olympics. Starting January 3, almost the entire world media, especially in South Korea, began covering the Inter-Korean Talks. Although the talks started on January 9, there was no mention of the event across the North Korean media, even after hours into the talks. Typically, major North Korean media such as the central television has 5:00 p.m., 8:00 p.m., and 10:00 p.m. time slots for critical news. For major events such as nuclear tests, there would be a 3:00 p.m. breaking news report. However, there was no report or any direct mention of the talks. Instead, since the beginning of the new year, the North Korean media circulated blanket-coverage of Kim Jong-un’s New Year’s Greetings Speech. Xinhua published the photos of the January 9 front pages of all major North Korean newspapers and none showed any report of the Inter-Korean Talks.
Source: Xinhua, January 9, 2018
According to an article that Xinhua published, in 2002, only 11 Chinese companies made the Fortune Global 500 list, but, in 2017, 115 Chinese companies made the list compared to 132 U.S. companies. Most of the Chinese companies are from the bank, insurance, telecommunication, and electric grid industries while 60 percent of the companies were SOEs (state owned enterprises) and accounted for over 80 percent of the net capital and total income. However the article called these SOEs “big but not strong.” They lacked the ability to be competitive, especially in value creation ability. The article stated that the Chinese companies lagged behind in Internet, information technology, pharmaceutical, automotive, military, semiconductor, and chip industries when compared to the Western companies. Among those 109 Chinese companies on the Global Fortune 500 list, the Return of Asset rate was only 1.65 percent compared to 4.79 percent for the U.S. companies. Chinese SOEs are behind in the high end core technology and the spare parts industry and there are no companies that are even comparable with the Western companies in the pharmaceutical and semi-conductor industries. The article reported that the Chinese SOEs need to make breakthroughs in renovation and resource dependency and to rely less on core product imports while improving on brand position and quality.
Source: Xinhua, January 15, 2018