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Afrika
Aug 23rd, 2017 by Gao

Kartik Jayaram, Omid Kassiri, Irene Yuan Sun: The closest look yet at Chinese economic engagement in Africa (McKinsey)

Field interviews with more than 1,000 Chinese companies provide new insights into Africa–China business relationships.

Streik | Atomkraft | Monsanto | 1989
Mai 30th, 2015 by Gao

Elaine Hui: Chinese Bike Light Strikers Occupy Factory, Face Firings and Arrests (Labor Notes)

Workers who make bike lights at a factory in Shenzhen, China, have been on strike since April 30, demanding that the company pay up what it legally owes them.
The strikers stayed overnight in the factory, stopping production and delivery for two weeks, until police came to evict them and arrest worker leaders on May 13.
New An Lun Lamp, a Taiwanese-owned factory, produces bicycle lights for brands including the German Messingschlager and Buchel and the Dutch AXA.
There are about 100 workers in the factory, mostly middle-aged women, with some nearing retirement.
Though their actions have been peaceful, thus far 13 workers have been fired and nine arrested by police for “disrupting public order.”
Seven out of the nine detained workers were released within 24 hours. The other two—including one of the workers’ elected representatives—were held by police for seven days. During the police raid on May 13 these two clutched the legs of the general manager and his son, crying and begging them not to remove the finish goods.

Migrant worker in Nanjing cheated out of compensation and left to die (China Labour Bulletin)

Listed in Shanghai, Hong Kong, London and New York, China Petroleum and Chemical Corp (Sinopec) is one of China’s largest and best-known companies. It has a vast network of subsidiaries including Yangzi Petrochemical based in Nanjing. This company reportedly owns or has an interest in Nanjing Yangzi Maintenance and Installation (南京扬子检修安装), which employed Chen Dejun, a young migrant worker from the neighbouring province of Anhui.
Chen started work at Yangzi Maintenance and Installation in July 2010. Within 18 months, he started to experience dizziness, irregular heartbeat, headaches and tremors – all the symptoms of benzene poisoning, and almost certainly the result of his work doing spray-painting, acid washing, chemical cleaning and toxic waste disposal at the plant.
Today, Chen is seriously ill and bedridden but he has still not received any compensation because his employer did everything it could to prevent his illness from being classified by the authorities as an occupational disease.

Robert Foyle Hunwick: Desperate Chinese are turning to mass suicide to get their government’s attention (Global Post)

The location was chosen for maximum impact: a downtown boulevard, famous for Beijing’s swankiest shops and its plushest hotels. Studded with these symbols of Western capitalist chic, Wangfujing Shopping Street could hardly be further from the more desperate concerns of rural China.
It was here that a group of about 30 men gathered on a warm spring morning and, in front of hundreds of shoppers, swallowed a quantity of pesticide. They fell to the ground en masse and, according to several eyewitnesses, foamed at the mouth.
As the men were rushed to hospital, startled crowds spread the news on social media, while the scene quickly returned to normal. Police issued a statement later that day that none had died; local reports explained they were taxi drivers from the northeast, who’d traveled to the capital to stage the protest…
In August 2013, a group of 21, also from Heilongjiang, attempted mass suicide near the Beijing West rail station, after a railway company failed to provide their children with the public-service jobs they were promised. Four months later, 13 homeowners attempted the same over a failure to be compensated for demolitions. In two incidents in July last year, five petitioners drank poison in a police station, and five men and two women from Jiangsu, did the same outside the offices of the China Youth Daily newspaper. They were dissatisfied with the terms of their eviction.

孟山都滚出中国! (monsanto-out-of-china.org)

Emma Graham-Harrison: China warned over ‚insane‘ plans for new nuclear power plants (Guardian)

China’s plans for a rapid expansion of nuclear power plants are “insane” because the country is not investing enough in safety controls, a leading Chinese scientist has warned.
Proposals to build plants inland, as China ends a moratorium on new generators imposed after the Fukushima disaster in March 2011, are particularly risky, the physicist He Zuoxiu said, because if there was an accident it could contaminate rivers that hundreds of millions of people rely on for water and taint groundwater supplies to vast swathes of important farmlands.
China halted the approval of new reactors in 2011 in order to review its safety standards, but gave the go-ahead in March for two units, part of an attempt to surpass Japan’s nuclear-generating capacity by 2020 and become the world’s biggest user of nuclear power a decade later.
Barack Obama recently announced plans to renew a nuclear cooperation deal with Beijing that would allow it to buy more US-designed reactors, and potentially pursue the technology to reprocess plutonium from spent fuel…
He, who worked on China’s nuclear weapons programme, said the planned rollout was going too fast to ensure it had the safety and monitoring expertise needed to avert an accident.
“There are currently two voices on nuclear energy in China. One prioritises safety while the other prioritises development,” He told the Guardian in an interview at the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
He spoke of risks including “corruption, poor management abilities and decision-making capabilities”. He said: “They want to build 58 (gigawatts of nuclear generating capacity) by 2020 and eventually 120 to 200. This is insane.”

Bethany Allen-Ebrahimian: These Chinese People Want High-Speed Rail So Badly They Are Fighting Police to Get It (Foreign Policy)

On May 16, thousands of people carrying banners marched through the streets of Linshui, a county in the southwest Chinese province of Sichuan. Some shouted slogans while others hurled rocks at lines of police in riot gear, who pushed back against the crowds and beat some with batons. Photographs show several people with bloody head injuries being cared for by paramedics and onlookers. Linshui residents turned out in droves, burned vehicles, and braved riot police for more than eight hours — not to protest inequality, corruption, or environmental degradation, but to demand that a high-speed rail line be built through their county.

Wolfgang Pomrehn: Chinas Investitions-Offensive (Telepolis)

Die Volksrepublik verstärkt ihren Kapitalexport und steckt viel Geld in den Aufbau von Eisenbahnen und anderer Infrastruktur in befreundeten Ländern.

Gu Yi etc.: On the 26th Anniversary of Tian’anmen Massacre (Sri Lanka Guardian)

We are a group of Chinese students born in the 1980s and 1990s and now studying abroad. Twenty-six years ago on June 4th, young students, in life’s prime with innocent love for their country just as we are today, died under the gun of the People’s Liberation Army in Beijing’s streets.

境外势力试图煽动八零后九零后(《环球时报》 im Google-Speicher. Das Original wurde mittlerweile gelöscht.)

十几名自称是“八零后和九零后”的在美“中国留学生”日前联署了一封致国内青年学生的公开信,就八九政治风波发表充满“民运味”、像是被手把手教着写出来的极端观点。它以十分凶悍的语言攻击中国现政权,照抄海外一些势力的话语歪曲讲述26年前发生的事情。通常来说,中国大陆赴美留学生即使思想发生一些变化,也写不出如此赤裸裸攻击祖国的文稿。

Hostile forces target younger generation (Global Times)

Eleven Chinese students born in the 1980s or 1990s and studying in the US recently signed an open letter to their counterparts in the mainland. The letter carries their extreme views on the 1989 Tiananmen incident in the tone that used to be adopted by much older pro-democracy activists. It harshly attacked the current Chinese regime, twisting the facts of 26 years ago with narratives of some overseas hostile forces. Generally, even if changes in thought do take place, it’s unlikely for mainland students who study in the US to lash out at their homeland in such an insulting way.

Emma Graham-Harrison: Chinese students in the west call for transparency over Tiananmen Square (Guardian)
范凌志:香港左翼爱国团体立场坚定反对泛民(《环球时报》)

Writing China: Rian Thum, ‘The Sacred Routes of Uyghur History’ (Wall Street Journal)

Julian Ryall: China plans for North Korean regime collapse leaked (Washington Post)

China has drawn up detailed contingency plans for the collapse of the North Korean government, suggesting that Beijing has little faith in the longevity of Kim Jong-un’s regime.
Documents drawn up by planners from China’s People’s Liberation Army that were leaked to Japanese media include proposals for detaining key North Korean leaders and the creation of refugee camps on the Chinese side of the frontier in the event of an outbreak of civil unrest in the secretive state.

Paul Mason: How to turn a liberal hipster into a capitalist tyrant in one evening (Guardian)

A new play, World Factory, asks the audience to run a clothing factory in China – and even the creators have been surprised at how people have behaved.

Frank Langfitt: How China’s Censors Influence Hollywood (NPR)

Urbanisierung | Wachstum | Lateinamerika
Jan 30th, 2015 by Gao

Eli Friedman: The Urbanization of the Chinese Working Class (Jacobin)

China has problems. Not despite thirty-five years of record-breaking growth, but because of it. The country’s dependence on exports and investment-led development has resulted in stark inequality, underconsumption, over-investment, disappearing arable land, exorbitant housing prices, and a looming environmental catastrophe. This leaves China increasingly vulnerable to a number of potential crises: external economic shocks, housing market collapse, mass defaults on public debt, and fits of social unrest.
What, then, might ensure the stability of Chinese capitalism for another generation?
For the state, a big part of the answer is urbanization. In the recently released National New Urbanization Plan (2014–2020), the central government calls for more than 100 million people to move to cities by 2020, pushing China’s urban population to 60 percent. The plan sets out admirable goals such as an expansion of public housing, education, and health services, a reduction in carbon emissions and other environmentally destructive activities, and preservation of agricultural land through limits on sprawl.

Jonathan Kaiman, Heather Stewart: Hard times return as China bids to bring its economic miracle to an end (Guardian)

Beijing insists slow growth is part of a plan to bring years of explosive expansion under control. But the global slowdown may make it hard to soft-land an economy still hooked on exports…
Official figures published last week showed that China’s GDP expanded by 7.4% in 2014. That was a significant drop from the 7.7% seen in 2013, and the weakest rate of growth since 1990…

Ralf Streck: China mischt den „Hinterhof“ der USA auf (Telepolis)

Nicht nur der Brics-Staat Russland treibt im Zuge der Sanktionspolitik der USA und Europas verstärkt Projekte in Lateinamerika voran (…). Den großen Wurf will nun das große Brics-Land China in der Region machen, die in den USA so gerne als „Hinterhof“ bezeichnet wird. In Washington ist man nicht sehr erfreut darüber, dass allein China im kommenden Jahrzehnt rund 250 Milliarden US-Dollar in Mittel- und Südamerika und der Karibik investieren will, womit sich das Handelsvolumen auf eine halbe Billion verdoppeln soll. Wichtigster Handelspartner Brasiliens (ebenfalls ein Brics-Staat) ist schon jetzt nicht mehr die USA, sondern China. Und das gilt auch schon für Chile und Peru. Über diese Entwicklung ist das Imperium im Norden besorgt. Das Tauwetter zwischen den USA und Kuba muss in diesem Zusammenhang gesehen werden.

Nebenbei:
Geoffrey Crothall: People’s Daily tries and fails to understand problem of wage arrears in China (China Labour Bulletin)
Ian Johnson: The Rat Tribe of Beijing (AlJazeera)
APA: Bürgermeister: Peking „wirklich nicht lebenswert“ (Standard)
Reuters: China stellt Milizen an der Grenze zu Nordkorea auf (Standard)
Catherine Phillips: $242 Billion High-Speed Beijing-Moscow Rail Link Approved (Newsweek)
APA: Chinesen bauen Bostoner U-Bahn (Standard)

Piräus | Kunming | Dalai Lama
Mrz 14th, 2014 by Gao

Λεωνίδα Βατικιώτη: Φόβος και δουλεμπόριο στο Νταχάου της Κόσκο (Πριν)

Στην περίπτωση της Κόσκο στον Πειραιά η κινεζοποίηση των εργασιακών σχέσεων δεν είναι σχήμα λόγου. Είναι καθημερινή πραγματικότητα για εκατοντάδες εργαζόμενους που προσλαμβάνονται μέσω εργολάβων – δουλέμπορων κι απολύονται με τη μεγαλύτερη ευκολία, αν διαμαρτυρηθούν για τις μεσαιωνικές σχέσεις εργασίας. Μάρτυρας, ο Δημήτρης Μπατσούλης, που απολύθηκε επειδή διεκδίκησε τα δικαιώματά του: να δουλεύει σε ένα ασφαλές εργασιακό περιβάλλον. Έκτοτε έχει προσφύγει δικαστικά εναντίον της εργοδοσίας.

In der englischen Übersetzung ist der Titel weniger drastisch als im griechischen Original:
In Piraeus, Chinese investment brings Chinese labour standards (Leonídas Vatikiótis)

Chinese labour standards in Europe. A daily reality for hundreds of employees, hired by subcontractors/slave traders, forced to work at abysmal security conditions and fired at a moment’s notice, in case they complain about medieval work relations. Dimitris Batsoulis, kicked out for requesting implementation of workplace safety regulations, has now gone to court against his former employer.

The Kunming Train Station Attack: A Hypothesis (East by Southeast)

David Rose: Why Was the Dalai Lama Hanging Out with the Right-Wing American Enterprise Institute? (Vanity Fair)
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