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Reuters Chinese: China’s Imports from North Korea Dropped over 30 Percent in May

Reuters Chinese recently reported that, based on data that the China General Administration of Customs just released, China’s imports from North Korea in May were valued at US$123.8 million. This was a 31 percent decline, year-over-year. The lowest import level from North Korea was in April, reaching US$99.3 million. March was the second lowest. The custom’s data showed that China’s halt to the importation of North Korean coal in February significantly limited North Korea’s capability of obtaining enough hard currency. The same data also showed China’s exports to North Korean totaled at US$319.8 million in May, which was a two-digit percentage increase, year-over-year. Also, the May export level was higher than April’s.

Source: Reuters Chinese, June 23, 2017

Xinhua: The Chinese Pension Fund Saw a Deficit in Some Regions

Xinhua recently reported that the Chinese Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security revealed that, based on its January to May statistics, the national pension fund saw a deficit in some regions. In Northeastern China, where most of the old industrial bases are located, the pension fund income is lagging behind its expenditures. Northeastern China has a much bigger retirement population, with fewer people paying into the pension accounts. The Ministry’s statistics also showed a significant imbalance among regions. This is a reflection of uneven economic development trends. The data demonstrated a clear structural difference between Eastern China and Midwestern China. Eastern China contributed a much bigger surplus to the overall pension fund. In order to ensure a healthy balance in the fund, the Ministry is planning to extend participation to all citizens, increase the government’s contribution to the fund, expand the scope of the market in which the pension fund can invest, and include company contributions as an income source for the fund.

Source: Xinhua, June 23, 2017

China Commented on French President Macron’s Suggestion to Restrict Chinese Investments

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that Geng Shuang, spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, commented on the suggestion that French President Macron made to give the European Union more power. The additional power is intended to allow the EU to be able to restrict China’s investments in Europe, especially in some of the critical industries. Geng recognized that China did pay attention to Macron’s suggestion. He further said that many countries in the world, European countries included, are emphasizing fighting against all kinds of protectionism under the current atmosphere of the anti-globalization mindset. He confirmed that China did encourage its investors to develop opportunities in Europe while requiring them to obey local laws and rules. China also hopes that Europe can provide the Chinese investors with a fair, just, and favorable investment environment.

Source: Sina, June 23, 2017

Xinhua: Central Inspection Work Found Local Governments Faked Economic Data

Xinhua recently reported that the Communist Party Central Commission for Discipline Inspection recently released a report that showed “issues” it had found in the provinces of Inner Mongolia, Jilin, Yunnan and Shanxi. The Twelfth Inspection Round was a “random patrol” on provinces and central-government-owned companies that had been inspected before. There have been “random patrols” done in 12 provinces already, as part of the “look-back” initiative. The new round discovered that a wide range of issues that were discovered in the previous round had not been properly remedied. Most importantly, some local governments in Inner Mongolia and Jilin were found to be faking official economic data. This new round of inspection resulted in some additional government officials being put under further investigation.

Source: Xinhua, June 12, 2017

China Published 2017 Blue Book Report on College Graduates Employment

Web news media Zhejiang Province Online recently reported, based on information aggregated from various popular Chinese sources, on the newly published Blue Book Report on Chinese College Graduates Employment. An independent third-party publisher instead of the Chinese government compiled the Blue Book. The survey was based on a sample of 289,000 2016 college graduates. According to the Blue Book, 91.6 percent of the students were employed within six months of graduation. However, only 65 percent of them were satisfied with the work they found. The highest job satisfactory lies in the top-five categories: software development companies, colleges, the Communist Party or government branches, Airlines, and some other Communist Party or government related organizations. The average new college-graduate worker’s monthly salary was RMB 3,988 (around US$586). The Blue Book also shows that the most popular college majors welcomed by the employers were Software Engineering, Network Engineering, Communications Engineering, and Information Security. The least popular majors were Music Performance, Fine Arts, and Law School. The Blue Book also found that the attractiveness of the “First Tier” cities (Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen) had declined.

Source: Zhejiang Province Online, June 14, 2017

Chinese Students in the U.S. Have the Highest Overstay Rate

Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that, based on a recent study, in 2016 there were 25,486 Chinese visitors in the United States who overstayed without proper permission. Among these people, 7,545 were Chinese students on expired visas. Among students from all foreign countries, this number is the highest. The country that ranked number two is India (3,014); South Korea is number three (2,068). The statistics were based on an analysis of overstay visa data that the Department of Homeland Security released. The same study also showed that the type of visa that suffered the largest share of the overstaying population was the student visa, reaching 42,493 in 2016. That’s 2.74 percent of all student visa holders. The consequences of overstaying without proper permission can be quite severe. It may lead to a minimum three-year ban (typically it is a 10-year ban) from entering the U.S. One could also be banned from the right to status adjustments or to obtaining a different type of U.S. visa anywhere else except in the country of origin.

Source: Sina, Jun 17, 2017

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