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Militärstützpunkt in Pakistan?
Jun 12th, 2017 by Gao

Reuters: Pentagon report singles out Pakistan as home of future Chinese military base (Dawn)

A Pentagon report released on Tuesday singled out Pakistan as a possible location for a future Chinese military base, as it forecast that Beijing would likely build more bases overseas after establishing a facility in the African nation of Djibouti.
The prediction came in a 97-page annual report to Congress that saw advances throughout the Chinese military in 2016, funded by robust defence spending that the Pentagon estimated exceeded $180 billion. That is higher than China’s official defence budget figure of $140.4 billion…
Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Hua Chunying declined to comment on possible overseas bases but said that China and Pakistan were close friends that conduct „mutually beneficial cooperation“ in a variety of fields.
While talking about the country’s operating overseas defence projects, Hua said the bases were there to improve navigation safety and assistance for fishermen as well as „to safeguard China’s independent sovereignty and territorial integrity. It is a legitimate right of a sovereign state.”

Neil Connor: China likely to set up military base in Pakistan – Pentagon (Telegraph)

China could build a new base in Pakistan as part of a global expansion of its military facilities, a US report says.
The report from the Pentagon predicts China will expand its military prowess after the construction of its first overseas naval base in Djibouti, a strategic location at the southern entrance to the Red Sea on the route to the Suez Canal.

Benjamin Haas: China to set up military bases in Pakistan – Pentagon report (Guardian)

China is set to expand its military capabilities across the globe, with new overseas bases in countries like Pakistan as the world’s largest army seeks an increased role in defending China’s interest abroad, a report by the Pentagon has said…
“China most likely will seek to establish additional military bases in countries with which it has a longstanding friendly relationship and similar strategic interests, such as Pakistan,” the report said.
“This initiative, along with regular naval vessel visits to foreign ports, both reflects and amplifies China’s growing influence, extending the reach of its armed forces.”
Last year China began building its first overseas base in the African nation of Djibouti, already home to Camp Lemonnier, a large US instillation responsible for counter terrorism operations in the Persian Gulf and east and north Africa.

Franz-Stefan Gady: Chinese Warships visit Pakistan (Diplomat)
Никита Коваленко: Сближение Китая и Пакистана добавит проблем России (Взгляд)

Китай и Пакистан вывели свое партнерство на новый уровень, явно дав понять это яркими символическими шагами, одним из которых стал первый совместный военный парад. Это событие в столь далеком, казалось бы, регионе может стать серьезным вызовом и для России. Дело в том, что сближение Пекина и Исламабада крайне нервирует одну из самых дружественных Москве стран – Индию.

F. M. Shakil: US alarm at possible Chinese base in Pakistan ignores context (Asia Times)

The Pentagon’s assessment this week that Pakistan may be set to host a Chinese military base is likely to have caused more of a commotion in New Delhi than in Islamabad. The fact is that Pakistan has provided strategic defense facilities to China for some time; indeed, such provision is key to the US$57 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC).

Vinay Kaura: Understanding India’s response to China’s Belt and Road (Asia Times)

New Delhi decided to skip the much-publicized Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, framing the One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative as a bad deal that undermines India’s core interests. Is this position in conflict with India’s simultaneous aspirations for economic cooperation and peaceful co-existence with China?

Doug Tsuruoka: China’s Obor could keep African economies moving (Asia Times)

China’s bold One Belt One Road (Obor) initiative to forge an integrated economic zone that stretches from Central Asia to Europe has an African component that could energize nations such as Nigeria and Tanzania at a time when they need a lift. Growth in sub-Saharan Africa hit its lowest level in two decades last year due to unstable oil prices, inflation and political volatility…
Obor has a firm beachhead in Africa. China surpassed the US as Africa’s largest trading partner in 2009…

Taiwan
Aug 29th, 2016 by Gao

丘琦欣:華文世界中的「左獨」與「左統」(破土) Brian Hioe: The pro-independence left versus the pro-unification left in the Sinophone world (New Bloom)

目前,隨著社會民主黨、時代力量黨、自由台灣黨等第三勢力左傾政黨先後成立,似乎已經開啓了一個台灣左翼復興的時代,或許也是台灣歷史上政治左翼第一次成為可能。畢竟,經過威權時期國民黨長期動用國家力量強制推行,將共產中國呈現為1949年至今台灣主權存續最大威脅的反共教育,台灣社會對於任何自我標榜為政治左翼的團體都是很有敵意的。

With the rise of new, Left-leaning third parties as the Social Democratic Party, the New Power Party, and the Free Taiwan Party, the present seems like an era of a resurgent Taiwanese Left. Or perhaps the present represents an era in which a political Left seems possible for the first time in Taiwanese history. After all, after so many years of state-enforced anti-communism at the hands of the KMT during the authoritarian period, and that has Communist China presented the most pressing threat to Taiwan’s continued sovereignty since 1949, Taiwanese society was rather hostile towards any self-proclaimed political Left.

洪凌:秩序之虐:太陽花/大腸花的排遺與孽瘴(苦勞網)

約莫在3月20日,佔領立法院行動第三天,我的情人(香港公民,堪稱良善自由主義者與中產階級,對於香港近年來的反中驅蝗動員極度不安且不贊成)詢問我,是否支持這場異議與激化的佔領。從反服貿的起初動員到近期的佔領立院,只要稍微有注意到相關脈絡與背後的意識型態操作,很難不得知是在反中恐共、型塑強烈異族恐懼的基礎上,進行政治正確的排拒強權大國(super power)之名。不過,「攻堅佔領」國家機器代議廳堂的動作,畢竟讓人驚訝且精神一振,甚至連我也不例外;再者,當時攻入的成員包括我認識的許多性/別異議者與激進社運成員。於是,距今三個星期以前,我告訴情人的答案是:「或許在主導意識形態戰場上,這是和我並不契合的戰役,但樂見騷亂體制的渾沌能量捲起更多的辯論與異質行動。」

Klassenkampf | KDVR
Apr 25th, 2015 by Gao

Ashley Smith, Ellen David Friedman: Contours of the class struggle in China (Socialist Worker)

Since the 2008 and the spread of the global economic crisis, China has experienced a sharp rise in class struggle, both in Hong Kong and on the mainland. Ellen David Friedman, a long-time organizer of the National Education Association in Vermont, founding member of the state’s Progressive Party and member of the Labor Notes Policy Committee, has been working for the last decade with labor and union activists in Hong Kong and the mainland. She spoke with Ashley Smith about the dynamics and nature of these struggles.

‚No way North Korea‘ — DPRK refused entry to China-led AIIB (Emerging Markets)

North Korea approached China to join the new Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) only to be summarily rebuffed by its chief economic and financial ally, Emerging Markets can reveal.
A senior envoy from the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) approached the presumptive inaugural president of the AIIB, Jin Liqun, probably in Beijing in February, only to be spurned, senior Chinese diplomatic sources said.
China’s message to North Korea was a straight-and-simple “no way”, the diplomat said, adding that China had asked for, and had failed to secure, a far more detailed breakdown of North Korea’s financial and economic picture, seen by the new China-led development bank as a basic first step in admitting the hermit state to its fold.

Sneha Shankar: China Clueless About Rejecting North Korea’s AIIB Application (International Business Times)

China said Tuesday it was not aware of rejecting North Korea’s offer to join the Beijing-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). A report last week had alleged that China let down Pyongyang’s intention to join the bank, citing the country’s fragile economy.

Andray Abrahamian: How North Korea’s hushed-up economy is hindering its development (Guardian)
Eric Talmadge: North Korea’s creeping economic reforms show signs of paying off (Guardian)

North Korea is trying to invigorate its hidebound economy by offering more control and possibly more personal rewards to key sectors of its workforce in the country’s biggest domestic policy experiment since leader Kim Jong-un assumed power.
The measures give managers the power to set salaries and hire and fire employees, and give farmers more of a stake in out-producing quotas. Some outside observers say they’re a far cry from the kind of change the North really needs, but they agree with North Korean economists who say it is starting to pay off in higher wages and increased yields.

Streik bei Cuiheng | Mindestreservesatz | Dokument Nr. 9
Apr 20th, 2015 by Gao

At the sharp end of the workers’ movement in China: The Zhongshan Cuiheng strike (China Labour Bulletin)

A month-long strike at a Japanese-owned bag manufacturer in the Pearl River Delta town of Zhongshan has been characterized by police violence, arrests and intimidation, and the absolute refusal of the boss to negotiate. Welcome to the sharp end of the workers’ movement in China.
The strike broke out in mid-March. The roughly 200 workers at Cuiheng Co. were unhappy at low-pay and the refusal of the company to pay social security and housing fund contributions, year-end bonuses and other benefits.

Tom Barnes, Kevin Lin: China’s growing labour movement offers hope for workers globally (Conversation)

Reuters: China’s central bank cuts reserve ratio (Guardian)

China’s central bank has cut the amount of cash that banks must hold as reserves on Sunday, the second industry-wide cut in two months, adding more liquidity to the world’s second-biggest economy to help spur bank lending and combat slowing growth.
The People’s Bank of China lowered the reserve requirement ratio (RRR) for all banks by 100 basis points to 18.5%, effective from Monday, the central bank said in a statement on its website.

Angus Grigg: China frees up $200b to stoke economy (Financial Review)

The RRR cut is expected to release around 1 trillion yuan ($208 billion) of capital into the economy.

China Steps Up Economy Help With Reduced Bank Reserve Ratios (Bloomberg)

The reserve-requirement ratio was lowered 1 percentage point Monday, the People’s Bank of China said. While that was the second reduction this year, the new level of 18.5 percent is still high by global standards. The cut will allow banks to boost lending by about 1.2 trillion yuan ($194 billion)…
The reserve ratio will be reduced by another percentage point for rural financial institutions, two additional percentage points for Agricultural Development Bank and a further 0.5 percentage point for banks with a certain level of loans to agriculture and small enterprises.
Those extra reductions give the move a “reformist flavor,” wrote Bloomberg economists Tom Orlik and Fielding Chen. Still, with growth weak and small companies most at risk, it’s understandable banks see state-owned firms as safer bets.
“As ever, the price of stronger growth is slower progress on structural reform,” they wrote.

Document 9: A ChinaFile Translation (ChinaFile)

This weekend, China’s leaders gather in Beijing for meetings widely expected to determine the shape of China’s economy, as well as the nation’s progress, over the next decade. What exactly the outcome of this Third Plenum of the Eighteenth Party Congress of the Chinese Communist Party will be remains shrouded in no small measure of secrecy, like most matters of high politics in China. President Xi Jinping has signaled that a significant new wave of economic liberalization may be in the works. But in the realm of political reform, Xi also has signaled a deep reluctance. In fact, many of the actions taken and techniques used under his year of leadership suggest a return to ideas and tactics that hark back to the days of Mao Zedong.
One such signal came during this past spring, when reports began to appear that the Party leadership was being urged to guard against seven political “perils,” including constitutionalism, civil society, “nihilistic” views of history, “universal values,” and the promotion of “the West’s view of media.” It also called on Party members to strengthen their resistance to “infiltration” by outside ideas, renew their commitment to work “in the ideological sphere,” and to handle with renewed vigilance all ideas, institutions, and people deemed threatening to unilateral Party rule. These warnings were enumerated in a communiqué circulated within the Party by its General Office in April, and, because they constituted the ninth such paper issued this year, have come to be known as “Document 9.”

Daniel A. Bell: Teaching ‘Western Values’ in China (New York Times)

Nobody is surprised that the Chinese government curbs “Western-style” civil and political liberties. But it may be news to some people that the government has recently called for the strengthening of Marxist ideology in universities and a ban on “teaching materials that disseminate Western values in our classrooms.” On the face of it, such regulations are absurd. It would mean banning not just the ideas of John Stuart Mill and John Rawls, but also those of such thinkers as Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels.

Reporters Without Borders reveals state secrets in reaction to Gao Yu’s sentence (Reporters Without Borders)

Brian Eyler: China’s new silk roads tie together 3 continents (China Dialogue)

China recently unveiled an action plan for its controversial One Belt, One Road initiative to link its economy with the rest of Asia, Africa, the Middle East and Europe. Known as the ‘new silk roads’, it combines new infrastructure networks of roads, railway lines, ports to strengthen trade, investment, and people-to-people cooperation.

Korruption | Tibet | AIIB | Wirtschaft | Umwelt | Personenkult
Apr 6th, 2015 by Gao

Andrew Jacobs: Taking Feminist Battle to China’s Streets, and Landing in Jail (New York Times)

The young Chinese feminists shaved their heads to protest inequality in higher education and stormed men’s restrooms to highlight the indignities women face in their prolonged waits at public toilets.
To publicize domestic violence, two prominent activists, Li Tingting and Wei Tingting, put on white wedding gowns, splashed them with red paint and marched through one of the capital’s most popular tourist districts chanting, “Yes to love, no to violence.”
Media-savvy, fearless and well-connected to feminists outside China, the young activists over the last three years have taken their righteous indignation to the streets, pioneering a brand of guerrilla theater familiar in the West but largely unheard-of in this authoritarian nation.

Ben Blanchard, Clarence Fernandez: Tibet party boss says temples must be propaganda centers (Reuters)

Buddhist temples and monasteries in Tibet must become propaganda centers for the ruling Communist Party, where monks and nuns learn to „revere“ science and appreciate the party’s love, the troubled region’s top Chinese appointed official said…
Writing in the influential fortnightly party magazine Qiushi, Tibet’s Communist Party boss Chen Quanguo said the more than 1,700 temples and monasteries and 46,000 monks and nuns had to be seen by the government as „friends“.
„Let the monks and nuns in the temples and monasteries have a personal feeling of the party and government’s care and warmth; let them feel the party’s benevolence, listen to the party’s words and follow the party’s path,“ Chen wrote in Qiushi, which means „seeking truth“.
He called for temples and monasteries in the region to be outfitted with radios and televisions, as well as newspapers and reading rooms.

Ho-Fung Hung: China Steps Back (New York Times)

Beijing’s plans for a new multilateral Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank have put Washington on edge. More than 40 countries, including major United States allies in Europe, have signed up to join it despite the Obama administration’s objections and warnings.
In fact, the United States government has nothing to fear from the A.I.I.B.; its opposition is misguided. The bank’s creation will not enhance China’s global power at the expense of the United States. If anything, Beijing’s attempt to go multilateral is a step backward: It’s a concession that China’s established practice of promoting bilateral initiatives in the developing world has backfired.

Minxin Pei: China’s economy: Caught in a vicious, stubborn cycle (Fortune)

Beijing must contend with an unhealthy combination of excessive debt, overcapacity, and a lack of new sources of growth…
Chinese industrial production grew only 6.8% in January and February, the slowest since 2008. Real estate sales plunged 15.8% in value. Fixed-asset investment, the principal driver of Chinese growth, recorded anemic growth at 1.05% and 1.03% in January and February, respectively (compared with 1.49% and 1.42% in the same period last year).
Acknowledging this unpleasant reality, Chinese premier Li Keqiang told the attendees of the NPC that China’s GDP growth will be “around 7%” this year.
But achieving growth of 7% may be a tall order.

John Garnaut, Philip Wen: Chinese President’s war on corruption finds its way to Brighton (Age)

President Xi Jinping’s „You Die, I Live“ war against corruption seems a long way from the beachside cul-de-sacs of Brighton. But it has come right to the doorstep of Zheng Jiefu, an Australian resident property developer, who has been trapped in a mafia-style shakedown involving China’s former deputy spy chief and the country’s most wanted man.

Tim Maughan: The dystopian lake filled by the world’s tech lust (BBC)

From where I’m standing, the city-sized Baogang Steel and Rare Earth complex dominates the horizon, its endless cooling towers and chimneys reaching up into grey, washed-out sky. Between it and me, stretching into the distance, lies an artificial lake filled with a black, barely-liquid, toxic sludge.
Dozens of pipes line the shore, churning out a torrent of thick, black, chemical waste from the refineries that surround the lake. The smell of sulphur and the roar of the pipes invades my senses. It feels like hell on Earth.

Austin Ramzy: Xi Jinping’s Sayings Now Available in ‘Little Red App’ (New York Times)

President Xi Jinping of China is the model of a modern multimedia leader. He has appeared in cartoons, been praised in song, had his travels tracked by a very dedicated Weibo account, and had his book on governance translated into at least nine languages.
So an app was obviously next.
Created by a website run by the Central Party School of the Communist Party, the new, free app offers intensive lessons on Mr. Xi. It has 12 features including texts of his speeches and books, news reports, analyses from experts and a map that traces his travels.

Tom Phillips: China’s Xi Jinping launches his ‘Little Red App’ (Telegraph)

During the 1960s and 1970s, Chairman Mao’s ‘Little Red Book’ is said to have been the most printed book in the world, with hundreds of millions of copies produced.
Xi Jinping’s 12.8MB app, which is the handiwork of software designers employed by Beijing’s secretive Communist Party School, has had a more modest start.
By Friday afternoon it had been downloaded just 1,200 times, according to XYO, an app search engine.

Übersetzungen:
Another Shoe Strike, the Silk Road, and a Smashed-up High School (Chuang)

Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank | Südchinesisches Meer | Arbeiterbewegung
Apr 2nd, 2015 by Gao

Norbert Hellmann: China setzt multilaterale Entwicklungsbank AIIB auf (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)

China hebt eine neue multilaterale Entwicklungsbank aus der Taufe. Die von 21 Mitgliedsländern unterstützte Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) soll mit 50 Mrd. $ Kapital Infrastrukturprojekte in asiatischen Schwellenländern anstossen.
Die am Freitag mit einer Zeremonie in Peking ins Leben gerufene Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) soll sich primär mit Finanzierungen für Infrastrukturvorhaben in strukturschwachen asiatischen Ländern hervortun. Chinas Finanzminister Lou Jiwei und Delegierte von 21 asiatischen Ländern, die als vorläufige Gründungsmitglieder das Unterfangen unterstützen, unterzeichneten eine Absichtserklärung, die am Entstehen einer neuen multilateralen Entwicklungsbank nun keinen Zweifel mehr lässt. Bis zur Hälfte des auf 50 Mrd. $ veranschlagten Kapitals der Bank soll von China eingebracht werden, das sich damit eine weitgehend uneingeschränkte Führungsrolle sichern würde. …
Laut Medienberichten in den USA und Australien soll der amerikanische Aussenminister John Kerry zuletzt heftigen Druck ausgeübt haben, um dafür zu sorgen, dass US-Bündnispartner der AIIB-Gründung fernbleiben.

Patrick Welter: Wettstreit zwischen China und den USA (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)

Mit Südkorea schliesst sich ein weiterer amerikanischer Verbündeter der von China initiierten neuen Entwicklungsbank in Asien an. Die Regierung in Seoul verspricht sich davon mehr Einfluss in der Region, aber auch mehr Aufträge für koreanische Unternehmen.

Nikolaus Jilch: USA isolieren sich: China mischt die Weltordnung auf (Presse)

Die Welt hat eine neue Abkürzung: AIIB. Die Asiatische Infrastruktur-Bank, vor zwei Jahren vom chinesischen Präsidenten, Xi Jinping, vorgeschlagen, hat sich für China zu einem erstaunlichen Erfolg entwickelt. Wenn Dienstag die Deadline für die Anmeldung zu dieser neuen Kreditinstitution ausläuft, werden mindestens 44 Nationen dabei sein – möglicherweise sogar mehr, wenn noch ein paar Spätentschlossene dazukommen.

Deutschland als Gründungsanwärter für die AIIB genehmigt (China.org.cn)
András Szigetvari: Lockruf aus China für Österreich unwiderstehlich (Standard)
Thomas Fuster: Die Schweiz will in die AIIB (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)
Thomas Fuster: Amerikas einsamer Kampf in China (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)

Den USA ist die AIIB ein Dorn im Auge. Vordergründig wird dies mit Bedenken gegenüber den Standards bei der Entwicklungsfinanzierung begründet, zumal eine von China orchestrierte Bank bezüglich Good Governance oder Umweltschutz kaum allzu penibel auftreten dürfte. Letztlich geht es aber vor allem um die Wahrung politischer Interessen: Weder eine schleichende Verdrängung der Weltbank und ADB noch die stete Ausdehnung von Chinas Einflusssphären liegen im Interesse Washingtons. Der Appell zu kritischer Distanz gegenüber dem neuen Prestigeprojekt von Pekings Machthabern stösst bei Amerikas Verbündeten aber auf taube Ohren. So will sich nicht nur Grossbritannien der AIIB anschliessen; laut Medienberichten planen auch Frankreich, Deutschland und Italien den Schritt.

Felix Lee: Angst vor Dominanz Chinas (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)

AP: US Navy: Beijing creating a ‚great wall of sand‘ in South China Sea (Guardian)

Admiral Harry Harris Jr told a naval conference in Australia that competing territorial claims by several nations in the South China Sea are “increasing regional tensions and the potential for miscalculation”.
“But what’s really drawing a lot of concern in the here and now is the unprecedented land reclamation currently being conducted by China,” he said.
“China is building artificial land by pumping sand on to live coral reefs – some of them submerged – and paving over them with concrete. China has now created over 4 square kilometers (1.5 square miles) of artificial landmass,” he said.

Echo Hui, Heather Timmons: Workers at China’s largest athletic shoe maker are poised for another historic strike (Quartz)
Manfred Elfstrom: Whither China’s New Worker Militancy? (China Policy Institute)
China’s ageing construction workers and the urgent need for an industry overhaul (China Labour Bulletin)

In the 1980s and 90s, millions of young labourers from the Chinese countryside flooded into the cities to work on construction sites; building roads, bridges, airports, residential and commercial properties, as well as ostentatious new government offices.
During the 2000s, as population growth slowed, fewer and fewer young workers followed and soon the average age of construction workers started to climb. Today, it is virtually impossible to find anyone younger than 30 working on the construction sites of major cities. On some work sites in Shenzhen, for example, more than 90 percent of the workers are reportedly over 50-years-old.

Ian Talley: China Is “One of the Most Unequal Countries in the World,” IMF Paper Says (Wall Street Journal)

Although per-capita income has grown and the number of people living on less than a $1.25 a day has plummeted, income inequality has skyrocketed, the economists said. The top quintile of earners now pull in nearly half of total income while the poorest quintile of earners account for under 5%.
“China’s widening income inequality is largely a reflection of faster income growth among the rich, rather than stagnant living standards among the poor.”

The devil, or Mr Wang [Qishan] (Economist)

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