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Lehrer | Zhou Yongkang | Australien | China Airlines
Jun 20th, 2016 by Gao

China’s teachers: The unsung heroes of the workers’ movement (China Labour Bulletin)

Images of worker activism in China tend to be dominated by factory workers and, more recently, coal miners and steel workers. However, some of the largest, best organized and most determined worker protests of the last few years have been staged by teachers.
Teachers make up less than two percent of China’s overall workforce but they account for about four percent of the strikes and protests recorded on China Labour Bulletin’s Strike Map. Moreover, unlike workers in privately-owned factories, most teachers are employed by the state and their protests often pose a direct challenge to local government officials and administrators.

Xinhua: Son of Zhou Yongkang sentenced to 18 years in prison (China Daily)

A court in central China’s Hubei Province on Wednesday sentenced Zhou Bin, son of Zhou Yongkang, to 18 years in prison for taking bribes and illegal business operations.
Zhou Bin was also fined 350.2 million yuan (53 million U.S. dollars) and all of his illegally obtained assets will be confiscated, according to the verdict of Yichang City Intermediate People’s Court.

Liam Ward: Radical Chinese labour in Australian history (Marxist Left Review)

Flick through any mainstream book on Australian history and chances are you’ll find some version of the phrase “cheap Chinese labour”. Historians usually employ it to explain the alleged centrality of the organised working class in establishing racist anti-Chinese immigration laws, particularly the cluster of federal government legislation broadly known as the White Australia policy. This competition from pliant non-union labour was interpreted through the racial supremacist ideas of the time and, so the argument goes, prompted unionists to respond with vociferous calls for the total exclusion of non-white immigrants.
But a subtle shadow tracing through the history books suggests a problem with the argument. Time and again, often without any significant conclusions being drawn, we see passing reference to Chinese workers in Australia organising, striking and generally giving hell to their employers. These are fleeting glimpses of a neglected history of class struggle waged by Chinese workers whose memory continues to be dismissed as both separate from and somehow a threat to the workers’ movement.

Nele Husmann: China Airlines darf nicht nach Athen fliegen (AeroTelegraph)

Die griechische Regierung hat China Airlines eine Absage erteilt: Ihre Flugzeuge dürfen nicht in Athen landen. Das angespannte Verhältnis zwischen Taiwan und der Volksrepublik China ist wohl der Grund.

Panama-Papiere
Apr 6th, 2016 by Gao

Matthias Müller: Sprachlos in Peking (Neue Zürcher Zeitung)

Staatschef Xi Jinping ist Korruption ein Dorn im Auge. Die Enthüllungen der «Panama Papers» wird er deshalb mit Argusaugen verfolgen. Auch Mitglieder seiner Familie nutzen jedoch «Briefkastenfirmen». …
Welche Chinesen Briefkastenfirmen gründeten, bleibt im Dunkeln. Deren Namen dürften für eine breite chinesische Öffentlichkeit jedoch keine grosse Überraschung darstellen. Im Fokus steht Deng Jiagui , der seit 1996 mit der älteren Schwester von Staats- und Parteichef Xi Jinping, Qi Qiaoqiao, verheiratet ist. Das Ehepaar war bereits 2012 in Visier westlicher Medien geraten, als die Nachrichtenagentur «Bloomberg» enthüllte, dass es über Vermögenswerte in Höhe von mehreren Hundert Millionen Dollar verfüge.

Huang Zheping: China’s elite—including Xi Jinping—are linked to offshore deals that hid millions of dollars (Quartz)

At least eight top Chinese officials are linked to offshore deals through associates, an investigation into 11 million leaked documents from one of the world’s largest offshore law firms shows. They include the brother-in-law of Chinese president Xi Jinping, whose offshore firms went dormant before Xi came into power, and the granddaughter of a former top leader who bought an offshore company for just $1.

Juliette Garside, David Pegg: Panama Papers reveal offshore secrets of China’s red nobility (Guardian)

The eight members of China’s Communist party elite whose family members used offshore companies are revealed in the Panama Papers.
The documents show the granddaughter of a powerful Chinese leader became the sole shareholder in two British Virgin Islands companies while still a teenager. Jasmine Li had just begun studying at Stanford University in the US when the companies were registered in her name in December 2010. Her grandfather Jia Qinglin was at that time the fourth-ranked politician in China…
Also in the data are Hu Dehua, the businessman son of Hu Yaobang, the Communist party’s general secretary ousted in 1987…

Johnny Erling: Der Panama-Skandal erreicht Chinas Führung (Standard)
Panama Papers – The Power Players: Deng Jiagui | Li Xiaolin (International Consortium of Investigative Journalists)
Powerful force is behind Panama Papers (Global Times)

A huge leak of confidential documents from Mossack Fonseca, a Panama-based law firm alleged to have been a facilitator of money laundering for its clients has shocked international public opinion. Over 11 million documents were passed to German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung by an anonymous source. These documents have been reportedly investigated by some 300 global journalists for a year.
The Western media soon collected the most eye-catching information from the documents and leaders of non-Western countries have been scrutinized. Most media led with the allegations that a close friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin had laundered $1 billion. The Western media has opaquely described it as „Putin’s money laundering.“ …
The Western media has taken control of the interpretation each time there has been such a document dump, and Washington has demonstrated particular influence in it. Information that is negative to the US can always be minimized, while exposure of non-Western leaders, such as Putin, can get extra spin.
In the Internet era, disinformation poses no major risks to Western influential elites or the West. In the long-run, it will become a new means for the ideology-allied Western nations to strike a blow to non-Western political elites and key organizations.

In den Medienberichten weniger prominent platziert:
Tsai Ing-wens Bruder hatte Beziehungen zu Anwaltskanzlei Mossack Fonseca (Radio Taiwan International)

Tsai Ying-yang, der Bruder der kommenden Präsidentin Tsai Ing-wen, hatte Beziehungen zur Anwaltskanzlei Mossack Fonseca. Das wird aus den kürzlich veröffentlichten Dokumenten der im Rahmen der Steuerhinterziehung genutzen panamaischen Anwaltskanzlei deutlich. …
Die Kanzlei [Mossack Fonseca] wurde 1977 von Jürgen Mossack, dem Sohn des Waffen-SS Rottenführers Erhard Mossack gegründet. Der US-Auslandsgeheimdienst CIA führte seinen Vater nach dem zweiten Weltkrieg für Spionagezwecke in Panama. Dort gründete der Sohn Jürgen Mossack die in die Schlagzeilen geratene Kanzlei zusammen mit dem panamaischen Anwalt Ramón Fonseca Mora.

Mia Lamar, Ned Levin: Five Things to Know About Hong Kong and the ‘Panama Papers’ (Wall Street Journal)

Hong Kong features prominently in a massive trove of documents allegedly leaked from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca & Co., according to reports published by international media outlets…
Hong Kong Was Mossack Fonseca’s Busiest Office…
China Laws Help Drive Hong Kong Offshore Activity… Chinese technology giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., which went public in New York in 2014 in a record-beating $25 billion offering, is incorporated in the Cayman Islands, for instance.

Peter Wolter, Ernst Wolff: »Geldanlegern ist dort fast alles erlaubt« (junge Welt)

Vom Skandal um die Panama-Konten profitieren in erster Linie die US-amerikanischen Steueroasen…
Es ist ganz offensichtlich ein Manöver der USA, sich selbst als weltweit beste Steueroase zu präsentieren. Wenn man die bisher vorliegenden Informationen über diese Panama-Papiere heranzieht, fällt auf, dass dort vor allem Gegner der USA angeschwärzt werden – die USA selber bleiben aber außen vor. Banken dieses Landes werden überhaupt nicht erwähnt, ebenso wenig Konzerne. Soweit ich weiß, werden auch keine Privatpersonen aus den USA genannt.
Das Interessante dabei ist, was nicht veröffentlicht wurde. Durch die Publizierung von Teilen dieser Papiere wird nämlich Druck auf Steuerhinterzieher aller Länder ausgeübt, ihr Schwarzgeld anderswo in Sicherheit zu bringen – niemand von ihnen kann wissen, ob nicht auch er in der Liste steht. Diese Leute werden sich vorsichtshalber eine neue Steueroase suchen: die USA. …
[Die USA] haben sich in den vergangenen Jahren – weitgehend unbemerkt von der breiten Öffentlichkeit – als neues Steuerparadies etabliert. Seit der Jahrtausendwende haben Regierung und Finanzkreise in Washington einen Krieg zum Beispiel gegen die Schweiz geführt: Deren Banken wurden genötigt, das Bankgeheimnis aufzuweichen. …
Parallel dazu wurden aber die US-Bundesstaaten Nevada, Delaware, South-Dakota und Wyoming als Standorte für derartige Konten etabliert. Dort gilt das Bankgeheimnis ohne Einschränkungen, den Geldanlegern ist dort fast alles erlaubt. …
Natürlich ist es gut, dass einige dieser Schiebereien jetzt an die Öffentlichkeit kommen. Aber letzlich versucht doch nur ein Übeltäter, andere Bösewichte zu beschmutzen, um von sich selbst abzulenken. Die wahren Schuldigen am Finanzchaos, die ganz großen Firmen und die Finanzinstitute der Wallstreet, bleiben mit Sicherheit ungeschoren.

Corporate Media Gatekeepers Protect Western 1% From Panama Leak (Craig Murray)

Whoever leaked the Mossack Fonseca papers appears motivated by a genuine desire to expose the system that enables the ultra wealthy to hide their massive stashes, often corruptly obtained and all involved in tax avoidance. These Panamanian lawyers hide the wealth of a significant proportion of the 1%, and the massive leak of their documents ought to be a wonderful thing.
Unfortunately the leaker has made the dreadful mistake of turning to the western corporate media to publicise the results. In consequence the first major story, published today by the Guardian, is all about Vladimir Putin and a cellist on the fiddle. As it happens I believe the story and have no doubt Putin is bent.
But why focus on Russia? Russian wealth is only a tiny minority of the money hidden away with the aid of Mossack Fonseca. In fact, it soon becomes obvious that the selective reporting is going to stink.
The Suddeutsche Zeitung, which received the leak, gives a detailed explanation of the methodology the corporate media used to search the files. The main search they have done is for names associated with breaking UN sanctions regimes. The Guardian reports this too and helpfully lists those countries as Zimbabwe, North Korea, Russia and Syria. The filtering of this Mossack Fonseca information by the corporate media follows a direct western governmental agenda. There is no mention at all of use of Mossack Fonseca by massive western corporations or western billionaires – the main customers. And the Guardian is quick to reassure that “much of the leaked material will remain private.”
What do you expect? The leak is being managed by the grandly but laughably named “International Consortium of Investigative Journalists”, which is funded and organised entirely by the USA’s Center for Public Integrity. Their funders include

  • Ford Foundation
  • Carnegie Endowment
  • Rockefeller Family Fund
  • W K Kellogg Foundation
  • Open Society Foundation (Soros)

among many others. Do not expect a genuine expose of western capitalism. The dirty secrets of western corporations will remain unpublished.

Clifford Coonan: Panama Papers: China describes revelations about its leaders as ‘groundless’ (Irish Times)

Und anderswo:
Self-censorship sensed as Japan’s TV stations replace outspoken anchors (Japan Times)

Hosts Ichiro Furutachi of TV Asahi’s influential “Hodo Station” and Shigetada Kishii of the TBS evening news program “News 23″ will both be replaced in April. NHK, too, is considering pulling longtime anchorwoman Hiroko Kuniya from its “Close-up Gendai” news and features program.
Furutachi has often been criticized by the government and its supporters for his commentaries…
Kuniya’s departure has long been whispered about as she is known for asking big-name politicians tough questions. However, she has survived until now.
Similarly, Kishii expressed opposition to contentious security bills before they cleared the Diet last September and called on fellow opponents to speak up.

Siegfried Knittel: Beschneidung der Pressefreiheit in Japan nimmt zu (Standard)

Journalisten beklagen ein zunehmend repressives Klima in Japan. Der Rücktritt dreier bekannter Fernsehmoderatoren sorgt für Unruhe…
Ins Blickfeld der ausländischen Presse geriet Furutachi, Macher der abendlichen Nachrichtensendung „Hodo Station“ des linksliberalen Asahi TV, im vergangenen Jahr, nachdem der Kommentator Shigeaki Koga in Furutachis Nachrichtensendung bekanntgemacht hatte, dass der Sender ihn auf Druck der Regierung zum Rücktritt gedrängt habe. Nun traf es Furutachi wegen seiner in „Hodo Station“ geäußerten Zweifel an der Verfassungskonformität der im vergangenen Jahr verabschiedeten Verteidigungsgesetze selbst.

Wirtschaft | Korruptionsbekämpfung
Sep 26th, 2015 by Gao

Ralf Ruckus: China Crash – Der Umbau der Wirtschaft stockt (gongchao)

In den Tagen der Panikverkäufe und platzenden Blasen wirkten die chinesischen Börsen wie Spielbanken, in denen beim Roulette auf mögliche Wirtschaftstrends gesetzt wurde. Hinter dem Auf und Ab der Kurse stehen wirtschaftspolitische Manöver der herrschenden Kommunistischen Partei Chinas (KPCh) und anderer Spieler sowie langfristige Entwicklungen des chinesischen Kapitalismus.

William H. Overholt: The politics of China’s anti-corruption campaign (East Asia Forum)

Chinese ‘corruption’ is overwhelmingly graft, whereas in, for instance, the Philippines under former president Ferdinand Marcos, and in India, corruption in the narrow sense predominates. Many important Marcos-era projects were designed to fail, leaving the government in debt. In China, good roads and ports get built consistently. In India they don’t. Likewise with primary education and international sporting events.
More costly still, Japan has what’s termed ‘structural corruption’. A few major interest groups dominate the legislature to the extent that they can pervert national policy to their benefit…
In China, the scale of graft has become potentially fatal for the regime. Some claim that China’s authoritarian system inevitably causes extreme corruption and a democratic China would be much cleaner. But poor democracies typically have much more crippling corruption than China. In these countries, there are few or no political contributions other than bribes or candidate self-funding and the complexity of democratic judicial systems makes it difficult to convict criminals, which empowers wealthy criminality.

Agrarpolitik | Tianjin
Aug 20th, 2015 by Gao

Qian Forrest Zhang, Carlos Oya, Jingzhong Ye: Bringing Agriculture Back In: The Central Place of Agrarian Change in Rural China Studies (Journal of Agrarian Change 15.3:299–313 [Juli 2015]; kein freier Zugang)
The capitalist transformation of rural China: Evidence from “Agrarian Change in Contemporary China” (Chuang)
Chinese peasant struggles from 1959 to 2013 (Chuang)

左楠:天津爆炸:你必须知道的几个事(破土)
The Tianjin Explosion: A Tragedy of Profit, Corruption, and China’s Complicated Transition (Chuang)
Wolfgang Pomrehn: Viele offene Fragen nach Explosion in Tianjin (Telepolis)
AFP: Migrant workers bear the brunt of blasts in Tianjin (Straits Times)
In China, there is no firefighters’ trade union and it shows (China Labour Bulletin)

Geostrategisches | Wanderarbeiter
Jun 21st, 2015 by Gao

Rückschlag für US-Dollar als Leitwährung: China zahlt Gazprom künftig in Yuan (RT)

China und die Russische Föderation machen Ernst mit ihrer Ankündigung, bei ihrer Geschäftsabwicklung den US-Dollar so weit wie möglich außen vor zu lassen. Sowohl die Exporte der Gazprom aus der Östlichen Sibirisch–Pazifischen Pipeline nach China als auch das Öl-Geschäft aus der Arktis werden in Zukunft in der Landeswährung Yuan getätigt.

Kenneth Shortgen jun.: There are now two reserve currencies as petro-yuan joins petro-dollar (Examiner)

Ever since Henry Kissinger forged the global petro-dollar agreement with Saudi Arabia and OPEC in 1973, the U.S. currency has remained the singular global reserve for over 40 years. However, on June 9 that sole monetary reign has come to an end as Russian gas giant Gazprom is now officially selling all oil in Chinese Yuan, making the petro-Yuan a joint global reserve, and ending America’s sole control over the world’s reserve currency.

Bart Gruzalski: An Economic Reason for the US vs. China Conflict (CounterPunch)

There are many reasons that the US is pushing on China in the South China Sea. Two articles have been published on Counterpunch in recent weeks exploring “why?” None mention an important economic reason that has, at least in part, motivated the US to go to war and is very much at stake in the growing dispute with China: the value of the dollar.

Steve LeVine: China is building the most extensive global commercial-military empire in history (Quartz)

Much has been made of Beijing’s “resource grab” in Africa and elsewhere, its construction of militarized artificial islands in the South China Sea and, most recently, its new strategy to project naval power broadly in the open seas.
Yet these profiles of an allegedly grasping and treacherous China tend to consider its ambitions in disconnected pieces. What these pieces add up to is a whole latticework of infrastructure materializing around the world. Combined with the ambitious activities of Chinese companies, they are quickly growing into history’s most extensive global commercial empire.

Mel Gurtov: Rules and Rocks: The US-China Standoff Over the South China Sea Islands (Asia-Pacific Journal)

The long-running, multi-party dispute over control of islets in the South China Sea (SCS) is worsening both in rhetoric and provocative activity. Meeting in late May at the Shangri-La Dialogue on regional security, US and Chinese defense officials sparred over responsibility for the increased tension, though they stopped short of issuing threats. In fact, all sides to the dispute say they want to avoid violence, prefer a diplomatic resolution, and support freedom of navigation. Both the US and China insist that the dispute notwithstanding, their relationship overall is positive and enduring. But China, citing its indisputable sovereignty over the SCS, is backing its claim in ways that alarm the US and several Asian governments: construction of an air strip on the Spratly Islands, a land reclamation project that has artificially expanded its claimed territory, and most recently emplacement of two mobile artillery vehicles.
Accompanying these latest Chinese actions are acknowledgments by the foreign ministry of their military purposes. The original explanation of China’s expanding presence on the islands was that they were intended for search-and-rescue operations, environmental protection, and scientific work. Now the explanation is the need to protect Chinese territory. The Pentagon has responded by publicly discussing US options such as flyovers and navigation in Chinese-claimed air and sea space. A US navy surveillance aircraft has already challenged China’s sovereignty claim by overflying Fiery Cross Reef in the Spratlys, prompting a Chinese order (which the aircraft ignored) to leave the area. In the meantime, US military assistance to other claimants, including Vietnam and the Philippines, has enabled their coast guards to at least keep an eye on Chinese activities.

John Bellamy Foster: Marxism, Ecological Civilization, and China (Monthly Review)

China’s leadership has called in recent years for the creation of a new „ecological civilization.“ Some have viewed this as a departure from Marxism and a concession to Western-style „ecological modernization.“ However, embedded in classical Marxism, as represented by the work of Karl Marx and Frederick Engels, was a powerful ecological critique. Marx explicitly defined socialism in terms consistent with the development of an ecological society or civilization — or, in his words, the „rational“ regulation of „the human metabolism with nature.“
In recent decades there has been an enormous growth of interest in Marx’s ecological ideas, first in the West, and more recently in China. This has generated a tradition of thought known as „ecological Marxism.“
This raises three questions: (1) What was the nature of Marx’s ecological critique? (2) How is this related to the idea of ecological civilization now promoted in China? (3) Is China actually moving in the direction of ecological civilization, and what are the difficulties standing in its path in this respect?

Lynette H. Ong: Breaking Beijing? (Foreign Affairs)

Chinese President Xi Jinping is leading one of the most vigorous campaigns against corruption and dissent since the Mao era. In fact, it appears that his campaign has extended as far as Canada; Beijing is attempting to extradite the Vancouver-based businessman Mo Yeung (Michael) Ching for alleged corrupt business dealings in the mid-1990s. Ching is the son of Cheng Weigao, a senior Chinese Communist Party (CCP) official who was charged with corruption in 2003. Some view these campaigns as the key to restoring the CCP’s strength and legitimacy. Others predict that they will be destabilizing because of the scale, opaqueness, and intensity—by attacking both “tigers” and “flies” (that is, high- and low-level officials), Xi is striking at the core of the patronage networks that hold the political system together, weakening the party from within. And by tightening the reins on public discourse through an increasingly centralized censorship apparatus, Xi is further diminishing his party’s legitimacy.

Chasing Shadows: Policing Migrants in Guangzhou’s Urban Villages (Chuang)
Patti Waldmeir: China’s rural migrants: life as a trashpicker in a Shanghai hole (Financial Times)

AP: Chinese women’s rights group collapses under official pressure (Guardian)

Suzanne Sataline: ‘Hong Kong Is Quite Seriously Divided’ (Foreign Policy)

Democracy — even a half-cooked version with Chinese characteristics — will not be coming soon to Hong Kong. On June 18, the city’s legislature, the Legislative Council, vetoed a constitutional amendment that would have let Hong Kong voters cast ballots for their chief executive — albeit for a maximum of 3 candidates, restricted and vetted by Beijing — in 2017.

Jonathan Mirsky: China’s Panchen fires a surprise ‚poisoned dart‘ at Beijing (Nikkei Asian Review)

China’s 11th Panchen Lama, Tibet’s second-highest religious leader, „discovered“ and installed by Beijing, recently expressed alarm that Buddhism in Tibet may soon exist in name only because of a shortage of monks — the implication being that the shortage was due to Chinese policy. Will this unexpected criticism be seen as a „poisoned arrow“ by the Chinese Communist Party, like the one for which his predecessor, the 10th Panchen Lama, was punished in the 1960s? And if so, will he, also, face punishment?

David Dawson: No, that trite folklore isn’t Chinese (World of Chinese)

Ignorance of other cultures can be a marvelous thing sometimes. It allows you to attribute whatever you want to that culture, and come off sounding wise.
Chinese wisdom is a popular target here. How many hokey bits of wisdom have been attributed to ancient Chinese philosophers? After all, sometimes it’s pretty easy to confuse them for pop culture pap.

Zhou Dongxu: China Prepares ‚Traditional Culture‘ Textbooks for Its Officials (Caixin)

TTP | Klimawandel | Hongkong
Mai 4th, 2015 by Gao

Patrick L. Smith: The real story behind Shinzo Abe’s visit: China, TPP and what the media won’t tell you about this state visit (Salon)

In agreements reached as soon as they met Monday, Abe and President Obama have taken defense ties to an intimacy unprecedented in history. As it stands now, this breaches Article 9 of the Japanese constitution, the “no-war” clause barring Japan from military activities other than those in direct defense of its shores.
On the White House steps Tuesday, Abe confirmed his conscription as a commissioned officer in Washington’s campaign to get its ambitious trade pact, the corporate-drafted Trans-Pacific Partnership, signed this year. “We will continue to cooperate to lead the TPP talks through their last phase,” Abe said in one of those side-by-side tableaux commonly staged for the press and the television cameras…
You will hear 55 times over the next little while that, no, the escalation of defense ties has nothing to do with containing the mainland. And no, the TPP may happen to exclude China but is not intended to exclude China.

Reuters: Climate change threatens major building projects, says Chinese expert (Guardian)

Zheng Guoguang, head of China’s meteorological administration, told Monday’s issue of state newspaper the Study Times that the increase in recent weather disasters such as floods, typhoons, droughts and heat waves had a “big connection” to climate change.
Such catastrophes were a threat to big schemes such as the Three Gorges Dam and a high-altitude railway to Tibet, he said.

Liu Qin: China govt cancels green festival as public consciousness on environment grows (China Dialogue)

Chinese authorities last week ordered the last-minute cancellation of an environmental festival in Beijing that was planned to mark Earth Day, a global event aimed at raising awareness of climate change and the Paris summit at the end of the year.
China’s best-known environmental group, Friends of Nature, asked people not to turn up to its Beijing Earth Day Environmental Protection Festival after Beijing police said the event was not permitted to go ahead and that the „online impact“ of the event be toned down.

Suzanne Sataline: What Happened to Hong Kong’s Pro-Democracy Movement? (Foreign Policy)

The activists from last year’s massive democracy occupation have splintered. Nowhere is this clearer than on college campuses represented by the Hong Kong Federation of Students, one of the architects of the fall 2014 pro-democracy protests that roiled the Chinese territory. Students at three local universities have voted to quit the league of university students; more vote drives are underway. Critics, some swayed by rising nativist anger, say student leaders’ insistence on passive resistance at the height of the protests doomed the push for open elections for the city’s chief executive, instead of a slate of candidates pre-vetted by Beijing. As the wounded student group tries to shore up its membership, its allies worry that the loss of a united student front will push the already anemic pro-democracy camp closer to irrelevance.

Conal Urquhart: Chinese workers in Israel sign no-sex contract (Guardian)

Chinese workers at a company in Israel have been forced to agree not to have sex with or marry Israelis as a condition of getting a job…
The labourers are also forbidden from engaging in any religious or political activity. The contract states that offenders will be sent back to China at their own expense.
About 260,000 foreigners work in Israel, having replaced Palestinian labourers during three years of fighting. When the government first allowed the entrance of the foreign workers in the late 1990s, ministers warned of a „social timebomb“ caused by their assimilation with Israelis.
More than half the workers are in the country illegally…
Advocates of foreign workers, who also come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania, say they are subject to almost slave conditions, and their employers often take away their passports and refuse to pay them.

Michael Forsythe: Who Owns Shares in Wang Jianlin’s Empire? Names Are Just a Start (New York Times)

James Palmer: Forced Disappearances, Brutality, and Communist China’s Politics of Fear (Vice)

Arbeitsmigration | Verschuldung
Apr 27th, 2015 by Gao

Bernice Chan: How modern-day Chinese migrants are making a new life in Italy (South China Morning Post)

Work Tensions Rise in China, Despite Calls for Harmony (Wall Street Journal)

Labor disputes continued to swell in China over the first three months of this year, government data showed Friday, as slowing growth in the world’s second-largest economy puts more pressure on workers.
Roughly 190,300 labor-arbitration cases were filed from January to March, up 16.8% from the same period a year earlier, said Li Zhong, a spokesman for the Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security, in a news briefing. Those cases involved some 275,600 people, up 24.8% from a year earlier, he added.
The first-quarter increase in arbitration cases outpaced the 12.6% on-year rise logged in the previous three months, according to ministry data. The rise in the number of affected workers was also faster than the 15.5% on-year increase seen in the fourth quarter.

Neil Gough: China’s Economy Puts New Pressure on Its Lopsided Job Market (New York Times)

趙平復:「萬隆會議精神」實際內涵和當代意義(苦勞網)

Geoffrey Crothall: Is Li Keqiang more at home in Davos than in Beijing? (China Labour Bulletin)

Mr Li was in his element at the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos this January where he gave a keynote address, and in the interview with the Financial Times on 31 March, in which he outlined his vision of China as an integral part of the global financial and economic system. The Davos crowd speak the same language as Mr Li; they are concerned with same issues, and basically want to see the same thing – stable and balanced global economic growth led by innovation and free markets.

„Youwei“: The End of Reform in China (Foreign Affairs)

Since the start of its post-Mao reforms in the late 1970s, the communist regime in China has repeatedly defied predictions of its impending demise. The key to its success lies in what one might call “authoritarian adaptation”—the use of policy reforms to substitute for fundamental institutional change. Under Deng Xiaoping, this meant reforming agriculture and unleashing entrepreneurship. Under Jiang Zemin, it meant officially enshrining a market economy, reforming state-owned enterprises, and joining the World Trade Organization. Under Hu Jintao and Wen Jiabao, it meant reforming social security. Many expect yet another round of sweeping reforms under Xi Jinping—but they may be disappointed.

Ian Johnson: Lawsuit Over Banned Memoir Asks China to Explain Censorship (New York Times)

Though China’s censorship of the Internet is widely known, its aggressive efforts to intercept publications being carried into the country have received less notice.

Mike Bird: China just let part of a state-owned company default for the first time ever (Business Insider)
Enda Curran, Lu Lianting: China Has a Massive Debt Problem (Bloomberg)

China has a $28 trillion problem. That’s the country’s total government, corporate and household debt load as of mid-2014, according to McKinsey & Co. It’s equal to 282 percent of the country’s total annual economic output.

Christopher Langner, Lu Lianting: We’re Just Learning the True Cost of China’s Debt (Bloomberg)
Mia Tahara-Stubbs: China bad debt spikes by more than a third (CNBC)
Laura He: China government firm’s default shocks market — Is more to come? (Markte Watch)

Russell Flannery: China Now Has A Record 400 Billionaires And Billionaire Families; Greater China 500+ (Forbes)

P S Ramya: China’s Myanmar Conundrum ()

Myanmar’s domestic politics are central to China’s strategic interests, and are testing Beijing’s core principles.

Gray Tuttle: China’s Race Problem (Foreign Affairs)

Nick Davies: Vietnam 40 years on: how a communist victory gave way to capitalist corruption (Guardian)

After the military victory, Vietnam’s socialist model began to collapse. Cut off by US-led trade embargos and denied reconstruction aid, it plunged into poverty. Now its economy is booming – but so is inequality and corruption

Harmonie etc. p. p.
Apr 12th, 2015 by Gao

中共中央 国务院关于构建和谐劳动关系的意见(新华)

劳动关系是生产关系的重要组成部分,是最基本、最重要的社会关系之一。劳动关系是否和谐,事关广大职工和企业的切身利益,事关经济发展与社会和谐。党和国家历来高度重视构建和谐劳动关系,制定了一系列法律法规和政策措施并作出工作部署。各级党委和政府认真贯彻落实党中央和国务院的决策部署,取得了积极成效,总体保持了全国劳动关系和谐稳定。但是,我国正处于经济社会转型时期,劳动关系的主体及其利益诉求越来越多元化,劳动关系矛盾已进入凸显期和多发期,劳动争议案件居高不下,有的地方拖欠农民工工资等损害职工利益的现象仍较突出,集体停工和群体性事件时有发生,构建和谐劳动关系的任务艰巨繁重。

Chun Han Wong: China Aims to Soothe Labor Unrest (Wall Street Journal)

As slowing growth fuels labor unrest in the world’s second-largest economy, China’s top leadership is pushing for greater efforts to foster harmony across its increasingly agitated workforce.
In a recent directive, top Communist Party and government officials called on party cadres and bureaucrats across the country to “make the construction of harmonious labor relations an urgent task,” to ensure “healthy economic development” and to consolidate the party’s “governing status.”

女权主义者被拘第35天,公民寄出媒体报道呼吁检方不予批捕(Evernote)
Edward Wong: Chinese Police Seeking Charges Against Detained Women’s Activists, Lawyer Says (New York Times)

Tingting Shen: Inside the world of China’s trans sex workers (Gay Star News)

Reuters: 2000 police used to quell pollution protest in China which left one dead (Guardian)

One person died and 50 were arrested after some 2,000 police, using rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons, put down a protest by villagers against pollution from a chemical plant in China’s Inner Mongolia, an overseas human rights group said…
In the latest incident, villagers in Naiman Banner took to the streets to protest against a chemical processing zone they said was polluting farmland and grazing land, the New York-based Southern Mongolian Human Rights Information Centre said in a statement late on Monday.
The group quoted a witness as saying police used rubber bullets, tear gas and water cannons to disperse the demonstrators, leading to one death.

2015年春季人才流动分析报告(智联招聘~中商情报网)

智联招聘发布的《2015春节白领跳槽调研》报告中显示,在12228份调查问卷中,47.8%的白领已经在春节前后更新了简历在找工作中,而有13.7%的白领已经办理了离职或新工作的入职手续。超过半数的白领在春季选择了跳槽。
   当跳槽已成为职场常态。白领怎么跳?跳去哪里?在跳槽的过程中职业规划发生了哪些改变?为此,智联招聘根据2015年春节后白领投递简历行为的全站大数据,独家发布《2015春季人才流动分析报告》为广大白领解读跳槽的方向与选择。

Chun-Wei Yap: Amid Corruption Crackdown, 10,000 Chinese Officials Want New Jobs (Wall Street Journal)

David E. Sanger, Rick Gladstone: Piling Sand in a Disputed Sea, China Literally Gains Ground (New York Times)

The clusters of Chinese vessels busily dredge white sand and pump it onto partly submerged coral, aptly named Mischief Reef, transforming it into an island.
Over a matter of weeks, satellite photographs show the island growing bigger, its few shacks on stilts replaced by buildings. What appears to be an amphibious warship, capable of holding 500 to 800 troops, patrols the reef’s southern opening.

Patrick McGee, Jamil Anderlini: China inflation misses Beijing target (Financial Times)

Subdued demand and falling oil prices last month pulled Chinese inflation well below Beijing’s target of “around 3 per cent” for this year.
China’s consumer price index maintained a sluggish year-on-year pace of 1.4 per cent in March, the same rate as in February, according to the government’s official figures.
Forecasters had predicted the CPI would decelerate to 1.3 per cent.
However, the bigger problem was at factory gates. Producer prices deflated for a 37th consecutive month in March, falling 4.6 per cent, versus a 4.8 per cent fall in February.
That is the longest period of factory gate deflation in China on record.

Pengpeng: “This society is creating angry youth”: memoir of a punk in Wuhan (Chuǎng)

Kaiser Kuo, David Moser, Rogier Creemers: Cyber Leninism and the Political Culture of the Chinese Internet (China File)

Tania Branigan: Top Chinese TV presenter filmed insulting Mao at private dinner (Guardian)

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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