The Sinocism newsletter is compiled by Bill Bishop, and republished here with permission. Be Informed About China. The Sinocism China Newsletter. Free.Smog, Fraud and Diplomacy, my newest China Insider column, looks at the recent air pollution surge, Caterpillar’s China hairball and the latest in the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands dispute:
When faced with a true crisis, the Chinese Communist Party usually acts resolutely, but there is no quick fix for the environmental problems that have been building for decades…
Last week’s column discussed Caterpillar‘s huge write-down of its acquisition of 2012 ERA Mining Machinery after discovering “multiyear, coordinated accounting misconduct.” Emory Williams, the former chairman of ERA, issued a statement on Monday in which he declared he was “shocked” that there was fraud at his former company…
Caterpillar appears to have bought itself a large Chinese hairball, one that will keep many lawyers busy for a long time…
There is now some talk of a possible summit but that may be too hopeful as neither side has given any indication it thinks the other even has any grounds for a dispute.
he had tried to warn off those who believed the trial was imminent, but he also said that he understood why so many got caught up in the wild-goose chase to distant Guiyang.
“It does show the understandably huge mistrust of the Chinese legal system by experienced reporters and their willingness to believe that, in the biggest political case since the trial of the Gang of Four, the government would openly violate its declared legal procedures before the world,” Professor Cohen said.
THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT
Xi strikes strident tone on foreign policy – FT.com – China will never compromise on what it considers its “core interests” and “legitimate rights”, its new leader Xi Jinping has said in his first published speech on foreign policy since taking over as leader of the ruling Communist party in November. Addressing the party’s elite 25-member Politburo, he struck a noticeably more strident tone than his predecessor Hu Jintao, insisting that China would “stick to the road of peaceful development but never give up our legitimate rights and never sacrifice our national core interests”.
人民日报-习近平在中共中央政治局第三次集体学习时强调 更好统筹国内国际两个大局 夯实走和平发展道路的基础 – Xi on foreign affairs at Politburo study session, page 1 of today’s People’s Daily (Xi vows peaceful development while not waiving legitimate rights – Xinhua |)// 习近平强调，我们要坚持走和平发展道路，但决不能放弃我们的正当权益，决不能牺牲国家核心利益。任何外国不要指望我们会拿自己的核心利益做交易，不要指望我们会吞下损害我国主权、安全、发展利益的苦果。中国走和平发展道路，其他国家也都要走和平发展道路，只有各国都走和平发展道路，各国才能共同发展，国与国才能和平相处。我们要广泛深入宣传我国坚持走和平发展道路的战略思想，引导国际社会正确认识和对待我国的发展，中国发展绝不以牺牲别国利益为代价，我们绝不做损人利己、以邻为壑的事情，将坚定不移做和平发展的实践者、共同发展的推动者、多边贸易体制的维护者、全球经济治理的参与者。
人民日报-走和平发展道路是战略抉择 – Zhong Sheng follows on XI Jinping’s foreign policy comments// 中国坚持走和平发展道路，决不能放弃自己的正当权益，决不能牺牲国家核心利益。在国际舞台上，迅速崛起的中国已经扮演，并将在相当长的一段时间内继续扮演越来越重要的角色。坚定走和平发展道路的同时，中国也需要提醒一些人：国际格局的调整，适应时代潮流的国际秩序的形成，从来都是国际关系行为主体，特别是大国互动的结果。打破对抗冲突的陈旧历史逻辑，责任不只在中国。
人民日报-反腐倡廉关系党和国家生死存亡 钟纪岩 – page 2 people’s daily by zhong jiyan on how the party and state’s survival is at stake in the corruption crackdown…remember the PD’s audience..not average Chinese but Party Members. if they have not gotten the message to clean up their acts, at least while this campaign is still in full swing, then they are not very bright, and/or just incorrigible…as of this writing this piece is the most read on the PD’s web site//腐败是社会毒瘤，是影响经济社会发展、国家长治久安的致命风险。腐败的实质是以权谋私。腐败严重破坏公平竞争的市场秩序，影响市场配置资源基础性作用的有效发挥，干扰社会主义市场经济的正常运行；严重违背社会主义民主政治原则，阻碍依法治国进程，损害党和政府的威信和形象，降低国家政权机关的公信力；严重背离社会主义核心价值，损害社会主义道德，滋长腐朽落后思想，助长不良社会风气；严重损害社会公平正义，干扰社会管理，侵害人民权益，引发甚至激化社会矛盾，影响社会和谐稳定。如果不坚决防范和惩治腐败，任凭腐败现象滋生蔓延，最终将导致经济衰退、政治动荡、文化颓废、社会混乱，全面建成小康社会的奋斗目标将无法实现，中华民族伟大复兴的”中国梦”也会落空。
Facebook looks more like WeChat every day – spouse now with us on vacation, been using wechat to run her cake business back in Beijing..just an amazing service, but for the data protection concerns...// If you weren’t paying close attention you might not have noticed, but this is definitely happening: Facebook is getting more like China’s WeChat with every passing day. Yesterday, Facebook quietly updated its iOS and Android apps to let users send audio messages of up to 60 seconds in length from smartphones.
In China, Politically Connected Firms Have Higher Worker Death Rates – Businessweek – The robustness of the link they found was striking: Connected Chinese companies averaged five times as many fatalities as similar unconnected companies. What’s more, the arrival or departure of a highly connected executive was marked by, on average, the death rate per 10,000 workers rising by 10 or falling by 6.4, respectively, in the following year. In a research summary published in the January/February 2013 issue of Harvard Business Review, they dubbed it “the unsafe side of Chinese crony capitalism.” “A fivefold difference I personally find to be stunning,” says Fisman. “I would have expected maybe a 10 per cent bump, not 500 per cent—this is a case where the fact of a connection is not as surprising as the magnitude of it.”
China averts local government defaults – FT.com – Chinese banks have rolled over at least three-quarters of all loans to local governments that were due to mature by the end of 2012, an indication of the immense challenge facing China in working down its debt load.Local governments borrowed heavily from banks to fuel China’s stimulus programme during the global financial crisis and are now struggling to generate the revenue to pay them back, a shortfall that could cast a shadow over Chinese economic growth.
Issue 605 28-01-2011 – Economic Observer Online – summarized translation of EEO story on the ERA deal, Caterpillar’s China hairball// One person who took part in the initial negotiations to acquire Siwei told the EO that he believed that someone working for Caterpillar’s acquisition team accepted bribes from Siwei, noting that “it happened inside a high-end entertainment centre in Zhengzhou”.
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