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SPIC: Still Evaluating Westinghouse’s Bankruptcy

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that the Chairman of China’s State Power Investment Corporation (SPIC) visited Japan and had a discussion with its parent company Toshiba about the future of Westinghouse. He told the media that SPIC was still evaluating Westinghouse’s ownership structure. SPIC has not yet made a decision on whether to acquire it. China’s third generation nuclear power plants use Westinghouse’s AP1000 nuclear technology. Based on U.S. media reports, the Trump administration has been very much concerned about the potential possibility of Chinese capital acquiring Westinghouse. Westinghouse, with its 130 years’ history, is widely recognized in the world as the original inventor of nuclear power generation. SPIC paid a lot of attention to Westinghouse’s bankruptcy before it was even filed. SPIC said the restructure of Westinghouse should not concern the U.S. government, since it has already been sold several times previously. However, sources revealed that the U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry has taken actions to seek the elimination of any Chinese connection among the potential buyers. Westinghouse owns a large number of military technologies as well.

Source: Sina, April 8, 2017

Global Times: India Could Be the Winner in the Trade War between China and the U.S.

Global Times recently reported that the anticipated trade war between China and the United States has been discussed around the world as the source for warnings of global economic risks. However, India may have a different opinion. Some members of India’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) National Executive Committee recently expressed the belief that the U.S. threats to punish Chinese manufacturers may result in China’s need for India’s large domestic market. China’s need to maintain growth can actually provide India a new leverage to play in the regional strategic balance. China’s manufacturing advantage depends on large export markets. Since the United States may no long be there for China, the largest market in Asia for exports is India. In fact, in its relations with both China and the United States, India’s large domestic market can be an advantage. It seems a United States under protectionism can create more trouble for China than for India.

Source: Global Times, April 8, 2017

China’s Chief Aircraft Carrier Designer: Nuclear Powered Carrier Is a Must

Global Times recently reported that Zhu Yingfu, a member of China Engineering Academy and Chief Designer of the Liaoning Aircraft Carrier, delivered a speech not long ago on improving the Chinese Navy’s equipment. Zhu is also the Chief Designer of a number of other naval vessels, such as China’s 052C Chaser, better known as “China’s Aegis.” Zhu mentioned that China’s second aircraft carrier may appear to be the same as the first one, but its internal equipment has been drastically updated. Zhu estimated that China should have at least three carriers, but preferably four to five. However, he was very confident that China must develop nuclear powered aircraft carriers. He asked the audience to remain patient and assured them that China will catch up to the world’s leading-edge level on that front “very soon.”

Source: Global Times, April 7, 2017

China’s Genetically Engineered Opium Seeds Pumped up Afghan Drug Growth

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that the opium output in Afghanistan is growing. Since 2015 Chinese genetically engineered opium seeds have been showing up in Afghanistan. The new seeds not only offer early maturity; they also allow year-round growing. This resulted in a major annual growth rate of 43 percent in 2016 across Afghanistan. According to statistics that the Afghan government released, opium output is showing rapid growth, which is in line with the findings that the the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNOCD) report published in 2016. The UN report showed that the growth was mainly the result of the new Chinese seeds and the shortening of the harvesting cycle from three months to two. They also extended the six-month growing season to the full year. Some Afghanistan farmers said some people handed them the seeds and promised to come back and buy the opium. They also provided funding as well as fertilizers. The Afghan government revealed that a large amount of the opium was sold to Russia and Pakistan. Europe and the United States were also major markets. The UN estimated the Afghanistan opium export volume to be US$4 billion in 2007. Now it should be much higher.

Source: Sina, March 27, 2017

China News: Many Companies Faked Air Quality Monitoring Data

China News recently reported that the Chinese Ministry of Environmental Protection issued its report on inspection results from 18 critical cities that have air quality concerns. This was a joint effort among the Ministry and six provinces. The Ministry sent 18 inspection teams to the cities and counties. The teams inspected over 8500 organizations and companies and found 3119 had problems. The joint inspection effort made several key findings. First is that response plans for heavy air pollution events were unrealistic. Second is that committed air pollution remediation plans did not get implemented. Third is that companies continued to ignore air pollution laws. The fourth finding is that many companies faked air quality monitoring data. The fifth finding is that the lack of dust control remains a common practice. The inspection effort also found that various levels of government branches did not take much action on their environmental protection responsibilities.

Source: China News, March 31, 2017

China Has Become World’s Largest Purchaser of Companies in Chemical Industry

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that industrial consulting company A.T. Kearney recently released its report on global chemical industry mergers. The A.T. Kearney Report estimated the potential mergers in 2017 globally will be worth US$300 billion. Three quarters of this total will cover four major unfinished deals: Dow – DuPont, Bayer – Monsanto, ChemChina – Syngenta, and Praxair – Linde. Each of the four may reach US$40 billion to US$70 billion. Each is worth two to three times the total of any single deal in the past decade in that industry. China’s share of the global chemical industry mergers has been growing steadily and it has become the largest buyer of chemical companies in the world. China now accounts for a quarter of the world’s mergers in the chemical industry.

Source: Sina, March 27, 2017

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