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Gordan Chang: Chinese Pay More Attention to U.S. Election than Olympics

After a recent two month visit to four Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, China scholar and lawyer Gordan G. Chang gave a speech in New York on August 1. The author of The Coming Collapse of China noticed that the Chinese leaders appear to lack confidence about the upcoming Beijing Olympics.

Chang and his wife were also surprised by the lack of interest to the game among Chinese people. Many Chinese are more interested in the U.S. presidential election than the Games.

Per Chang’s observation, China’s post Olympic economic forecast is gloomy.

Source: Epoch Times, August 5, 2008

Foreign Owned Enterprises Approaching 300,000

As of the end of June 2008, China had 8.6 million domestic enterprises, 280,000 foreign-owned enterprises and 27.28 million small businesses (“individual industrial and commercial households”), according to a recent release by the China State Administration of Industry and Commerce.

Source: Xinhua, July 10, 2008

250 Million Unemployed in China

2008 was a record year for China’s unemployment rate. A total of 250 million people are currently out of a job. Many of the 6 million college graduates will find it harder to find work this year. Affected by a strong Chinese Renminbi and rist in the cost of materials, many export-oriented companies have gone bankrupt. Due to a central government policy of eliminating ‘backward’ businesses, state owned companies were being closed at a peak rate.

In a recent estimate by Tian Chengping, former minister of China Labor and Social Security Ministry, in 2008, China’s unemployed population will reach 50 million in urban areas and 200 million in rural areas.

Source: China New Digest, July 9, 2008

Olympics Negatively Affecting Chinese Coal Market

The Beijing Olympics will have negative impact on the Chinese coal market, said Market, a newspaper under the ownership of the People’s Daily on June 27. Supplies of coal will likely decrease due to pressure from the international community on human rights and air quality in China. The authorities are expected to shut down mines to reduce accidents. Coal trucks will either be turned away or re-directed at check points leading to Beijing. For example, the Hebei provincial government has banned cargo trucks from entering into Beijing between July 1 and September 20.

Source: Market, June 27, 2008

Yum! Brands Inc. Cracks Down on Corruption in its China Operations

With speedy expansion into the China market, Yum! Brands Inc. is facing a rise in the number of business frauds and has launched a crackdown on internal corruption. The latest dismissal took place in a Pizza Hut store in Shanghai in mid-June where an employee was dismissed as a result of forging a fake financial statement.

According to statistics disclosed by Yum! Brands Inc., by the end of 2007, there were 2,100 KFC stores, including 300 opened in 2007, while the total number of Pizza Hut stores reached 300 including, 100 new stores opened in 2007. The revenue of Yum! Brands Inc. in China reached 21.5 billion yuan and its profits grew by 30 percent, accounting for 1/3 of its profits worldwide.

Source: China Business, June 23, 2008

Thousands of Reservoirs Damaged During Sichuan Earthquake

According to the Sichuan Earthquake Relief authorities, the total of reservoirs damaged during the May 12 earthquake has reached 1,996, with an additional 193 reservoirs added June 26.  All of these reservoirs have now operated at much lower water levels. 68 of them have been completely drained out of concerns of imminent dam break and over 900 are under repairs.

Source: Xinhua, June 26, 2008

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