SCHWEIZER BOTSCHAFT IN BEIJING
EMBASSY OF SWITZERLAND IN BEIJING
AMBASSADE DE SUISSE EN CHINE

Der wöchentliche Presserückblick der Schweizer Botschaft in der VR China
The Weekly Press Review of the Swiss Embassy in the People's Republic of China
La revue de presse hebdomadaire de l'Ambassade de Suisse en RP de Chine
  16-22.11.13, No. 502  
Startseite / Homepage   Archiv / Archives
Table of contents

DPRK and South Korea

Mongolia

^ top ^

 

Foreign Policy

Palestinians hope to enhance economic ties with China (Global Times)
2013.11.18
China's vice commerce minister Li Jinzao welcomed Sunday a Palestinian request to let Palestinian goods and products into Chinese markets. The vice minister said that Beijing is ready to present support and facilities for Palestinian companies to promote for their products in Chinese markets, when he met with Palestinian minister of economy Jawad Naji in the West Bank city of Ramallah. Such facilities would see the participation of Palestinian firms in expositions held in China while giving these companies featured corners so more visitors would get to know the Palestinian products, according to Li. The visiting Chinese delegation has also discussed with the Palestinian officials the ways to improve the economic cooperation agreement signed in 2005 between China and the Palestinian National Authority (PNA). Meanwhile, Li said that China was ready to export more high- quality products to Palestine, noting that commercial exchange between the two countries reached 50 million US dollars in the first nine months this year. He added that a Chinese delegation will arrive in the West Bank soon to study a project of a solar plates factory. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas proposed the project when he visited Beijing in May. In return, the Palestinian minister voiced his appreciation of the Chinese support, urging the Chinese government to start its major projects in Palestine in the near future. Commenting on the proposed solar plates' factory, Naji said that the Palestinians "hope that this great project will start soon and we are ready to offer all the facilities needed to make this project a reality." He also urged China to press Israel to ease restrictions on the Palestinian economy and allow the Palestinians to take advantage of their natural resources. On the margin of the meeting, the Chinese delegation agreed to study the possibility of assisting the Palestinian Ministry of Economy to construct its new building and provide the ministry with the equipment needed. ^ top ^

Sri Lankan president thanks China for help (Global Times)
2013.11.17
Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapaksa on Sunday expressed appreciation for China's help in post-war reconstruction. Sri Lanka welcomes investment from China and other parts of the world, Rajapaksa said at the concluding press conference of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (GHOGM). China has provided loans to Sri Lanka in building ports, highways, railways, and power plants. The Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall, the main venue of the GHOGM, was donated by the Chinese government in the 1970s and was refurbished for GHOGM, the most important meeting of the 53-member bloc. The island's second highway, which was funded by Chinese loan of 292 million US dollars, opened in October, reducing the time for travel between the country's main international airport and the capital city to just 30 minutes from one and a half hour. Since Sri Lanka ended a 30-year civil war in 2009, China has emerged as the island's largest loan provider with 1.2 billion US dollars delivered in 2009 and 821 million dollars in 2010. ^ top ^

China, Netherlands can learn much from each other: Dutch PM (Xinhua)
2013.11.17
Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said China and the Netherlands can learn from each other. The Prime Minister said the two nations can learn a lot from each other in dealing with such social challenges as aging society, healthcare reform and others. “These are the challenges that both our countries are facing, and we have discussed some of them with the (Chinese) president,” Rutte said in an exclusive interview with Xinhuanet Saturday. He said that the Netherlands has a lot to learn from what the Chinese leadership is doing right now, especially in the area of health reform. “There are one area, heath, where I think we can learn from what you are doing here to implement reforms. We can learn, in our insight, in terms of what is working and what is not working,” he explained. Rutte added, “there are also some positive experiences” in the Netherlands for China to go by. He explained in detail how “the neighborhood doctor-general practitioner” can save patients a lot of money, and how the “E-house” can improve the healthcare quality. He stressed there are other areas including flooding control, water management, agriculture production and others where experience can also be exchanged. Rutte arrived in Beijing Friday for a two-day visit. ^ top ^

Former United States president Bill Clinton calls for openness on spying (SCMP)
2013.11.19
Washington and Beijing should be more open to each other on what and who they are spying on, former US president Bill Clinton said yesterday in a forum after a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping. "China and America should commit to tell the whole truth of the listening we are doing to each other," Clinton said at a forum organised by the financial magazine Caijing, adding the debate surrounding whistle-blower Edward Snowden at least had prompted everyone to start thinking about the balance between privacy and security. "I don't think you can do it in a closet any more," he said. The Snowden case, he said, "made me think that we are on the verge of having the worst of all worlds: we'll have no security and no privacy." Clinton, who was president from 1993 to 2001, made the remarks after meeting Xi earlier in the day. He applauded the reform resolutions formulated at the Communist Party's third plenum last week. During their meeting, Xi said Sino-US relations had generally moved in the right direction. "With the joint efforts of generations of Chinese and US leaders, our relationship has become a skyscraper. We need to work together to keep building it," Xinhua quoted Xi as saying. Xi also said as long as the two major powers respected each other and achieved win-win co-operation, bilateral ties would have broader prospects. In the question-and-answer session in a Beijing hotel during the Caijing forum, Clinton also appeared to voice support for his wife to run for US president. "I hope we have a woman president in my lifetime, and I think it would be a good thing for the world as well as for America," Clinton said. His wife, Hillary Clinton, has not declared whether she will seek nomination to become a candidate for the Democratic Party. She stepped down earlier this year as US secretary of state. Clinton said he had no idea if his wife would make a White House run as "there is no such thing as a sure thing in politics", but she was "the ablest public servant I have ever worked with". "If that's what she wants to do, I will support her. But if she decides for whatever reason she doesn't, I will support that," said Clinton. He also defended the US policy to focus on Asia, which his wife helped implement in the first Obama administration. "It's not a move against China, it's a move to build a shared future...That's what we call a shared prosperity," said Clinton. ^ top ^

Spain orders arrest of China's ex-president Jiang Zemin (SCMP)
2013-11-20
A Spanish court on Tuesday issued an international arrest warrant for China's ex-president Jiang Zemin in a case brought by activists alleging that Chinese forces committed genocide in Tibet. Tibetan rights groups brought the case against Jiang, former prime minister Li Peng and three other Chinese officials, alleging they were responsible for “genocide, crimes against humanity, torture and terrorism” against Tibetans in the 1980s and 1990s. Spain's National Court issued the arrest warrant under the doctrine of universal jurisdiction, which allows its courts to try certain cases of human rights abuses committed in other countries. It accepted the case because one of the plaintiffs, Tibetan exile Thubten Wangchen, has Spanish nationality, and the Chinese courts have not investigated the allegations. The National Court wrote in a ruling released on Tuesday that there were “indications of participation” by the accused in the alleged crimes “given the political or military responsibility” they held at the time. On those grounds the court said it “considered it necessary to approve the issuing of international arrest warrants” against the five. The three other defendants are China's former state security chief Qiao Shi; the Communist Party's leader in Tibet at the time, Chen Kuiyan; and Peng Pelyun, minister for family planning in the 1980s. The Spanish court has also agreed to investigate a charge of repression in Tibet brought against China's most recent ex-president Hu Jintao, who left office last year. ^ top ^

Xi urges Iran to seek positive results in Geneva talks (Xinhua)
2013-11-20
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Tuesday urged Iran to seek positive results in the upcoming talks over its nuclear program in Geneva. The previous round of talks in Geneva earlier this month helped defuse tension and kept talks going, Xi told Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in a telephone conversation. The talks, Xi said, were in line with the direction of a political settlement of the issue. Xi asked the Iranian side to seize the opportunity of the new round of talks to be kicked off Wednesday and to seek broadest consensus with the P5+1 -- Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States plus Germany. China, as a party to the Geneva talks, is willing to work positively to create conditions for a comprehensive settlement of this issue, Xi said. He said China stands for a peaceful solution through negotiations on the basis of mutual respect, incremental approach and reciprocity. China appreciates Tehran's efforts to improve relations with the international community, he said. The Chinese president said his country attaches great importance to its relations with Iran, and looks at them in a long-term perspective. China is willing to work with Iran to enhance mutual trust and carry out practical cooperation, Xi said. Rouhani stated Iran's position that the nuclear issue should be settled in accordance with international law and norms of international relations. He appreciated China's impartial stand and its efforts to encourage talks, and expressed hope that China can continue to play a constructive role in the upcoming talks and push for win-win results. Rouhani said he was impressed with the meeting with Xi in Bishkek in September at a Shanghai Cooperation Organization summit. Tehran takes Iran-China relations as a priority in its foreign policy and is willing to enhance cooperation with China so as to carry forward bilateral relations.During their conversation, Xi also extended condolences to Rouhani over the terrorist attack on the Iranian Embassy in Beirut and said that China is against all forms of terrorism. Rouhani thanked Xi for his condolences. ^ top ^

Chinese president pledges closer EU cooperation (Xinhua)
2013.11.20
Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called on China and the European Union (EU) to properly position their comprehensive strategic partnership amid the process of globalization so as to forge ahead with bilateral cooperation. In a meeting with European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso, here for the 16th China-EU Summit, Xi said China and the EU are two major forces in maintaining world peace, two important markets to promote common development and two civilizations to advance the cause of human progress. He said the recent Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee mapped out an overall plan for comprehensively deepening reform. China is moving forward to the realization of the Chinese dream of national rejuvenation, while Europeans have sought the dream of integration for centuries, Xi told his guests. Stressing that both sides are walking on roads that have never been tried by previous generations, Xi called on the two sides to show mutual respect, support and tolerance, and to treat each other equally. China will continue to firmly support European integration, he said. China and the EU need to bear the trends of historic reforms in mind, grasp opportunities, accurately position the comprehensive strategic partnership amid a multipolar world and economic globalization, and realize the innovative development of China-EU cooperation so as to benefit the peoples of both sides and the world, the Chinese president said. Xi said both China and the EU need to make full use of the high-level meetings and several other mechanisms of dialogue in order to enhance mutual trust and communication on major global and regional issues. The two sides also need to expand cooperation on trade and investment, promote the negotiation on investment agreements and oppose protectionism in all forms, he said. Xi expressed the hope that the European side could create a sound environment for Chinese enterprises to conduct economic and trade cooperation in Europe. He called on the two sides to make a strategic plan for cooperation in 2020, boost cooperation on urbanization, science, aeronautics and astronautics and green economy. For their part, the two European leaders said the EU and China have become major partners for each other since the two established comprehensive strategic partnership ten years ago. The EU speaks highly of China's remarkable achievements and supports China's comprehensively deepening reform, they said, adding that China's momentum of rapid development is vital to Europe. The EU appreciates China's support and would like to maintain dialogue with China, deepen mutual trust, finish the negotiation of investment agreements at an early date and intensify communication and coordination on international and regional issues, the two leaders said. The 16th China-EU summit will be held on Thursday in Beijing to outline cooperation for the next five to ten years and upgrade their relationship. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang will launch the summit with Van Rompuy and Barroso. ^ top ^

Chinese medical rescuers depart for Philippines (Xinhua)
2013.11.21
A batch of Chinese emergency medical rescuers departed for the Philippines on Thursday from east China's Zhejiang Province to help with typhoon relief, local authorities said. The 50-strong team, with a good medical rescue capacity and plenty rescue experience, departed from the provincial capital of Hangzhou on Thursday night, to carry out humanitarian aid in the Philippines, said Ye Zhen, chief of the team and deputy director of the provincial health department. Four members are directly appointed by the National Health and Family Planning Commission, and other 46 are from Zhejiang. The members include practitioners in pediatrics, respirology, orthopaedics and infection; experts in disease control and prevention; and emergency managers. Many of them participated in rescue work for the Wenchuan earthquake in 2008 in southwestern Sichuan Province, which claimed more than 69,000 lives. The team also takes with them medicine and medical equipment such as B-ultrasound scanners. Upon arrival, the team will establish a field hospital to offer medical services for survivors of Typhoon Haiyan and work on disease prevention and control. A team member said he will follow the spirit of healing the wounded and rescuing the dying and do his best to carry out humanitarian medical assistance. The rescue work is estimated to last for two weeks. The death toll from Typhoon Haiyan had increased to 3,982 as of Tuesday, and the number of the injured ballooned to 18,267, according to figures from the Philippine government. ^ top ^

Li: China-Europe 2020 plan 'unprecedented' (China Daily/Xinhua)
2013.11.22
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Thursday described as "unprecedented" a plan for bilateral cooperation between China and Europe. "The plan is unprecedented in its breadth of content, ranging from aerospace and counter-piracy to urbanization and energy," Li told reporters after a 90-minute summit with European leaders at the Great Hall of the People, attended by European Council President Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso. Li called the plan a "roadmap"for China-Europe cooperation until 2020, and said talks were planned on an investment protocol between the two sides. Barroso was delighted by the plan for 2020, calling it strategic and detailed. The two sides will also discuss the feasibility of a free-trade agreement and work towards the goal of increasing bilateral trade to one trillion U.S. dollars by 2020. "All these moves will significantly boost bilateral trade and economic cooperation," Li said. "Trade and investment issues remain high on our agenda and we have made a substantial step forward by launching negotiations on an investment agreement, covering both investment protection and market access," Rompuy said. "A level playing field, transparency and confidence in the rule of law are essential on both sides for business to thrive." Both sides agreed to keep their markets open, oppose protectionism and deal with trade disputes through dialogue and friendly consultation. They will take effective measures to expand bilateral trade on high-technology. They will work more closely on transportation and infrastructure, cooperate on science and technological innovation, while developing new energy sources and materials together. The two sides will give full play to their high-level cultural communication and dialogue mechanism to expand exchanges in areas including education, culture, youth and public policy. They also vowed to strengthen cooperation on international and regional issues, such as the climate change, internet security, arms control and nonproliferation. In China-Europe relations, common ground outweighs differences, Li said, attributing those differences to their histories, cultures and development stages. "Any problem in China-Europe relations can be resolved as long as we increase communication and enhance understanding," Li said. He said China and Europe strengthening cooperation is in both sides' interests, and will send positive signals of peace, development and cooperation to the world. China firmly supports Europe's integration, and is glad to see a strong, prosperous and united EU. The combinations of two cultures and two markets will lift China-Europe relations to a new high, Li added. Stressing that the two economies had become interdependent and trade volume had quadrupled, Barroso said Europe-China relations are not only represented by trade, but also by politics, security and culture. Barroso said Europe and China are now at a turning point, citing Europe's own market reform and China's situation after the recent Communist Party of China plenum. Barroso said Europe supports the Chinese economy to be more inclusive and sustainable. Following the summit, Li, Rompuy and Barroso witnessed the signing of three deals on energy, intellectual property rights and agri-technology. ^ top ^

 

Domestic Policy

10 points highlighted in communique released after key CPC meeting (Xinhua)
2013.11.16
The 18th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Tuesday approved a decision on "major issues concerning comprehensively deepening reforms" at the close of their four-day meeting. "Xinhua Insight" listed the following ten points of the communique :
1. General objective - The general objective of the reforms is to improve and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics and push on with modernization of the country's governing system and capabilities.
2. Set up central leading team for "comprehensively deepening reform" - The CPC will set up a central leading team for "comprehensively deepening reform." It will be in charge of designing reform, arranging and coordinating reform, pushing forward reform and supervising the implementation of plans.
3. Establish state security committee - China will establish a state security committee, improving systems and strategies to ensure national security, according to the communique which called for the innovation of systems to effectively prevent and end social disputes and improve public security.
4. Market to play "decisive" role in allocating resources - China will deepen its economic reform to ensure that the market will play a "decisive" role in allocating resources. Build an open and unified market with orderly competition. Economic reform is key, and the core solution is a proper relationship between government and market, leaving the market to play the decisive role in allocation of resources and the government to play a better service.
5. Establish modern financial system - Set up a modern fiscal system that supports the initiative of both central and local authorities. China needs to improve its budget management and taxation systems in a bid to make responsibilities of government agencies match properly with what they spend. It is essential that China improves related legislation, ascertains government bodies' responsibilities, reforms the taxation system and ensures budgeting is transparent. A proper fiscal system provides institutional guarantee for optimized allocation of resources, social equality and long-term stability.
6. Overhaul judicial system - China will deepen judicial system reform and step up building a socialist judicial system that features justice, high efficiency and authority to uphold the rights and interests of the people. China will stick to the dominant role of public ownership, playing the leading role of the state-owned economy, while encouraging, supporting and guiding the non-public sector, enhancing its vitality and creativity.
7. New urban-rural relations to take shape - Allow people living outside cities equal participation in modernization and better property rights. Improvements must be made to promote agriculture, and urban development must lead to rural. The new set-up will allow farmers to "equally participate in the modernization drive and share its fruits". New agribusiness systems will be formed and more property rights should be given to farmers. Equal exchanges of urban-rural elements and balanced allocation of public resources should be promoted. A healthy development mechanism for urbanization will be improved. "The urban-rural dual structure is a major barrier preventing the integration of development," reads the communique.
8. Innovation of systems to effectively prevent and end social disputes - China will establish a state security committee, improving systems and strategies to ensure national security. China will improve social governance and safeguard the interests of the people. The communique urged better social development, safeguarding state security and ensuring people's livelihood and social stability. It called for the innovation of systems to effectively prevent and end social disputes and improve public security.
9. Drawing a "red line" for ecological protection - Drawing a "red line" for ecological protection, implementing a system of paid use of resources and ecological compensation, and reforming the system for the protection and administration of ecological environment. Establish a sound system to protect the country's ecological environment. "In constructing eco-civilization, it is imperative to build a sound system and to protect the ecological environment through the system". The system concerning property rights of natural resources as assets and the administration of their use should be improved".
10. Building modern armed forces with Chinese characteristics - Modern armed forces with Chinese characteristics will be built, the communique said. ^ top ^

Wait a minute, baby (China Daily)
2013.11.17
In the wake of the announcement by the Communist Party of China on Friday that the country's one-child policy will be relaxed, senior officials are asking eager parents to wait until local regulations are revised. Wang Pei'an, vice-minister of the National Population and Family Planning Commission, issued the caution in an online news release on Saturday. Chinese couples with one spouse being an only child would be permitted to have two children, if they choose, the CPC said on Friday, releasing policy changes that are part of deepening reforms suggested by the recently concluded Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee held from Nov 9 to 12. Currently, couples in which both parents are only children can have two. The latest adjustment to the nation's family planning laws comes after years of a strict one-child policy and is expected to affect between 15 and 20 million people on the mainland, experts estimated. The landmark initiative was a milestone decision that reflected consultation and public opinion, and would promote a harmonious and stable society into the 21st century, said a statement issued by the National Health and Family Planning Commission on Friday evening. It was also necessary in order to address demographic challenges, such as a rapidly aging population and a shrinking labor force, it said. But, as Wang noted, there is no uniform timetable for the implementation of the policy nationwide, and it would be up to local authorities to decide when to put the change into effect according to local population conditions, he said. "First we have to amend current laws on family planning before we can enforce it. People will not have to wait too long," he assured. In areas where there is a high concentration of couples who become eligible under the new regulations, those who are older and with a ticking biological clock will get permits first, he said. Measures are now being devised to avoid a "pile-up" of births over a short period of time, he said. Despite the relaxation of regulations, China will still adhere to family planning as a basic long-term policy, which will be fine-tuned gradually to maintain "a balanced development of the population in China over a long run". […] "The ultimate goal should be eliminating limits imposed by the government, leaving the decision to the families themselves." Mao Qun'an, a spokesman of the commission, said family planning is part of the comprehensive policy, and official estimates have ruled out the possibility of a population surge as a result of the revisions. Yuan Xin, a professor of population studies at Nankai University, predicted the national average fertility rate would be boosted to two at most. Currently, it stands at 1.5 to 1.6 nationwide, far below the global replacement level of 2.1, official statistics show. The fertility rate is the average number of children a woman has in her lifetime. Mao, the commission spokesman, expected China to maintain relatively low population growth over time. He credited China's successful family planning policy with containing a potential population explosion. The country's birth rate dwindled from 33.4 per thousand in 1970 to 12.1 per thousand in 2012. Without the policy, Mao estimated, China would have had to support a population of 1.7 to 1.8 billion, and per-capita ownership of resources, including arable land, grain, forests, drinking water and energy, would be 20 percent less than what it is today. At that rate, resources and environmental capacity would not have been able to support rapid economic development, he said. ^ top ^

Gov't allocates 4.8 bln yuan for culture (Xinhua)
2013.11.18
The Ministry of Finance on Monday said the government has recently allocated 4.8 billion yuan (783.03 million U.S. dollars) to boost the cultural sector. The amount of funding increased 41.18 percent from 2012, according to a statement on the ministry's website. So far, the central government has allocated a total of 14.2 billion yuan to boost the cultural sector, the statement said. The fund is expected to help carry out the central government's blueprint for cultural development, according to the statement. China vowed to deepen its cultural system reform and build the country into a socialist cultural power in a document publicized by the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Friday. To enhance its national soft power, China must adhere to the development path of a socialist culture with Chinese characteristics and consolidate the guiding role of Marxism in ideological areas, according to the document. ^ top ^

'Rumor' boy back to school after brief expulsion (Global Times)
2013-20-11
The high school student from Northwest China's Gansu Province who had been expelled by his school under alleged pressure from "authorities," in an episode assumed to be linked to his earlier arrest in a crackdown on online rumor-mongering, went back to class on Tuesday. The student, 16, who goes by the pseudonym Yang Hui, posted on his Sina Weibo account on Tuesday morning that he would resume studies at the Yusheng High School in Tianshui, Gansu Province, immediately. In a Weibo posting on Monday, Yang had accused the school of throwing him out owing to pressure from "authorities." "My absence from school on Monday had nothing to do with the school management. I thank the management committee and the teacher in charge of my class," Yang said on Tuesday. In his posting, Yang also thanked the Chinese media, the Netizens as well as the Gansu Education Department for their help and support. Yang was purportedly taken out of his classroom by a deputy principal of the school on Monday and told that immense pressure was brought to bear on the school because of the "things" he did, according to his earlier Weibo posting. Yang was detained on September 17 on a criminal charge of "provoking trouble" after he posted on Weibo questions over a police investigation into a man's death, while writing that "a protest seems unavoidable." The police later withdrew the criminal charge and made Yang serve a week-long administrative detention citing considerations of his age. Yang moved from a high school in Zhangjiachuan to Yusheng High School after being released on September 23. In another Weibo posting on November 10, Yang accused the police of beating him up during his detention in September. However, according to Tianshui-based news portal tsrb.com.cn, Yang's expulsion had nothing to do with the online rumor crackdown case. The news portal said that Yang's family had transferred the boy to Yusheng High School with help from a deputy principle's cousin, without providing necessary documents for his enrollment. As the Tianshui procuratorate started its probe into Yang's allegations of police beating, the deputy principal "grew nervous and decided to expel the boy to cover up for his professional negligence," the portal said. ^ top ^

Central government cyberspies step up surveillance of ethnic groups with new language-tracking technology (SCMP)
2013.11.20
Mainland authorities have boosted their cyberspying capability by developing technology that can track communications in the languages of ethnic groups. The sophisticated new system will allow the monitoring of voice calls, text sent via the internet and even communications embedded in images or graphics to alert them to possible social unrest. The system is aimed at local authorities in areas such as Xinjiang and Tibet, where security officials do not know the local language. But rights groups warn that the technology could lead to the further suppression of minorities. Ding Xiaoqing, a professor at Tsinghua University's Centre for Intelligent Image and Document Information Processing, and the leader of the team behind the new application, said most government officials in ethnic regions are Han Chinese who cannot read or speak the local language. "With the help of our technology, they can have first-hand, real time access to intelligence information. They can also deal with multiple languages with one system," she said. The technology can translate every major ethnic minority language in China, Ding explained. To broaden its use, the team had included overseas languages such as Arabic and Japanese. Ding said a more comprehensive surveillance approach could detect valuable information currently going unnoticed. She pointed to the recent suspected terrorist attack at Tiananmen Square on October 28, in which five people died and 38 were injured. Beijing blamed the violence on Xinjiang separatists. But a more robust system might have picked out warning signs, Ding said, especially those encoded in images. "An increasing number of messages are passed around on the internet in image format to dodge the government's surveillance. Most of the equipment in use these days cannot deal with such information," she said. The central government already maintains a vast cybersurveillance system and employs hundreds of thousands of staff to comb through online communications. It also has the ability to detect the level of "public emotion" contained in non-Putonghua posts or commentaries on the internet and alert authorities to possible outbreaks of unrest. But the system faces constraints. For instance, it can deal with only a single language, and requires operators who speak it. International rights groups expressed concerns over increased monitoring. Eleanor Byrne-Rosengren, director of Free Tibet in London, said technology was already being used to suppress free speech and the distribution of information about Tibetan issues over the internet. "A Tibetan teenager was arrested earlier this year for having Tibetan loyalty songs on his phone - apparently in a random, physical check. "We also know that Tibetans have been arrested and questioned regarding specific content [kept in a digital format], implying that electronic surveillance directly prompted the police action," Byrne-Rosengren said. "New forms of technological surveillance are certainly a matter of concern - sharing information by electronic means has already led to significant jail sentences - and we will be monitoring developments closely." ^ top ^

Lawyer body establishes supervision committee (Global Times)
2013.11.21
The All China Lawyers Association on Wednesday established a committee to supervise lawyers' conduct and vowed to punish those who break laws and regulations. The committee aims to improve lawyers' work style, uphold integrity and urge lawyers to abide by the law, said Vice Minister of Justice Zhao Dacheng at the committee's inauguration meeting. It was also formed to implement the spirit of the recent Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee. The document adopted by the plenum says, "Lawyers will play an important role in protecting the legal rights and interests of citizens and corporations in line with the law," and that their rights to practice will be protected while they will be punished for malpractice under improved systems. The new committee will help draft policies and measures regarding improvement of lawyers' practice, advise the All China Lawyers Association on improving lawyers' work style, reflect the public's suggestions on lawyers' management, and supervise lawyers' practice, according to a statement released after Wednesday's meeting. ^ top ^

Supreme People's Court creates microblog, WeChat account (Global Times)
2013.11.21
The Supreme People's Court (SPC) of China on Thursday created official accounts on Sina Weibo and WeChat, two of the country's leading social media tools, marking its efforts to promote judicial transparency. Nearly 76,000 Weibo users had become fans of the SPC on Weibo, a popular Twitter-like service, by 3 p.m. after it published its first post around 10 a.m. to announce the opening of the account. In its second post, the SPC released a document on building an improved mechanism to eliminate false charges in legal cases. Measures in the document include ruling out confessions obtained from the accused through torture, which includes subjecting the suspect to cold, hunger, thirst, burns, fatigue and other illegal means. Death penalty cases should have adequate evidence, the SPC said in the document, and courts must not yield to pressure from the media or "unreasonable petitioning by litigants." Both Weibo and WeChat have hundreds of millions of users in China. A statement from the SPC website said the new media accounts signal the SPC's steps to boost openness, value public opinions and widen the channel for the masses to oversee judicial authorities, which are in line with the spirit of the recent Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee. Netizens hailed it as "a milestone for China's rule of law," and suggested the SPC lend ears to the grassroots voices in the comments posted on the court's microblog account. Some also pointed out that the Supreme People's Procuratorate should follow suit. The SPC's statement said the move is aimed at building an Internet platform for judicial transparency and public service in order to increase interactions between the courts and the masses. The Weibo and WeChat accounts will release important trial information from the SPC and local courts, judicial interpretations, and key documents, and will "take initiative to respond to social concerns," it said, adding that some information from the SPC website will also appear on its Weibo and WeChat accounts. The SPC also asked subordinate courts to explore and enhance the use of new media in order to strengthen communication with the public, promote transparency, justice, judicial image and credibility. In August, Chinese and foreign media hailed the openness and transparency showed by the real-time online broadcasts and updates from Bo Xilai's trial in the Jinan Intermediate People's Court. The 64-year-old former secretary of the CPC Chongqing Municipal Committee and a former member of the CPC Central Committee Political Bureau was sentenced to life imprisonment for bribery, embezzlement and abuse of power. The Jinan court tweeted hundreds of real-time posts on the trial proceedings, including transcripts, pictures and audio and video files of evidence, on its official Weibo account, which currently has more than 526,000 followers. Many of the posts and court pictures have been retweeted tens of thousands of times. Using new media for timely and accurate disclosure of important trial information greatly satisfies public concern, analysts said. "Through the real-time posts, we feel like we are present at the hearing," said Xie Youping, head of Fudan University's justice and litigation system research center, in August, adding that "such openness and transparency have never happened in similar cases in the past." ^ top ^

 

Shanghai

Shanghai courts get tough on food safety violations (China Daily)
2013.11.19
Shanghai courts are stepping up their efforts to tackle crimes that jeopardize food safety, with prison sentences for offenders rising from just over three years on average to five years and seven months. The longer sentences result from a judicial explanation covering such cases that the Supreme People's Court and the Supreme People's Procuratorate issued in May 2013. In six cases on Monday, courts found 10 people guilty of food safety violations. The average of the prison sentences handed down was 5.63 years, compared with an average of 3.13 years for 15 similar cases between 2011 and May 2013. The six cases on Monday included the use of illegal chemicals and the sale of expired foods such as pork, oil, mooncakes, and crawfish, affected many people, said Xiao Wanxiang, presiding judge of a criminal tribunal at Shanghai High People's Court. In one case, Ni Xiaogang, the manager of Shanghai Gurun Trade Co Ltd and Shanghai Ruijun Industrial Trade Co Ltd, was sentenced to 13 years in prison, four years more than the longest sentence previously given for such a case. Ni bought tallow oil from Australia and New Zealand fully knowing that it was suitable only for industrial use. He then sold it to an edible oil producer, Shanghai Shiming Oil, between February 2010 and January 2012, making more than 37 million yuan ($6.07 million) in profit. The previous record prison sentence of nine years was handed to Ye Weilu, general manger of a food company that produced and sold more than 270,000 packets of steamed buns containing prohibited dyes. He was found guilty and sentenced in September 2011.Fines for offenders have also been raised from 283,000 yuan to more than 3.74 million yuan on average. None of those convicted in the six cases judged on Monday received a suspended sentence, in contrast with six suspended sentences between 2011 and May 2013. "Since the judicial explanation was published, Shanghai courts have abided by the principle of applying heavy penalties, while limiting the use of non-custodial sentences," said Zou Bihua, vice-president of the Shanghai High People's Court. In one case, Zhou said, the defendant Zhang Ruguo received six years in prison for selling nearly seven tons of expired moonmakes, making a profit of more than 100,000 yuan. Under the law, Zhang would have received no more than five years in prison if the court had considered only the amount of money involved, Zou said. "But the court felt that the costs involved in reselling the expired mooncakes were low, and the number of mooncakes sold indicated that many people had been harmed by the unhealthy food. So we identified this as a serious crime and gave him the sentence," Zou said. When police previously raided small restaurants and found them selling food products containing prohibited ingredients, the fines were usually around 1,000 yuan, because the total amount of tainted food sold was hard to trace. But such fines have now been raised to between 40,000 and 50,000 yuan, Zou added. Some legal experts have applauded the tougher sentences. "Food safety is a basic element of daily life, and law enforcement agencies should have zero tolerance and work with other watchdogs to deter violators," said Qiu Baochang, head of the lawyers group of the China Consumers' Association. ^ top ^

 

Guangdong

Guangdong seeks greater global business ties (SCMP)
2013.11.22
Guangdong party chief Hu Chunhua said the era of relying on preferential governmental policies and cheap labour is over - the province must forge closer ties with the international economy to grow.Hu widely seen as a rising star in the Communist Party - has been stressing growth since he took office in December. "For the first 30 years, Guangdong has been relying on preferential policies from the central government, our low labour costs and at the cost of environmental degradation" Hu said during the opening of a meeting with the province's overseas advisers yesterday. But he said Guangdong could no longer rely on this model if it wanted to remain a leading province in the country. "Only with an internationalised business-friendly environment can we encourage more foreign companies to come to Guangdong and to encourage Guangdong companies to seek economic co-operation around the world,'' he said. "We should establish an internationally-friendly business environment in Guangdong.'' Hu announced in August a plan to allocate 672 billion yuan (HK$850 billion) over the next five years to build new infrastructure, industrial zones and cities in areas that missed out on the Pearl River Delta's boom. The province's gross domestic product stood at 5.7 trillion yuan in 2012, growth of 8.5 per cent on the previous year. Hu said that represented a large gap with developed economies, as the province's per capita GDP was only about US$8,000 and urban disposable income was about 30,000 yuan. The province's rural residents were still fairing relatively badly, with per capita income was only about US$2,000, Hu said at the meeting. In explaining tax reforms announced at the plenum of senior leaders last week, Finance Minister Lou Jiwei told Xinhua yesterday that the ministry would no longer approve preferential tax policies for one region or another. Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the Guangzhou government announced 55 projects at an investment fair for private investors. The projects included transport, infrastructure, urban development, industrial parks, environmental protection, energy and water and social infrastructure. The city hopes the projects will attract private investment of more than 140.5 billion yuan. Several high-profile infrastructure projects are under development in the Nansha experimental zone, Guangzhou's southernmost district. These include an airport and port railway, both of which have attracted private funds. Nansha is one of the three economic and services pilot zones in the Pearl River Delta, alongside Hengqin and Qianhai. ^ top ^

 

Xinjiang

Xinjiang police attack under investigation (Global Times)
2013.11.18
Police said 11 people were killed in an assault on a police station on Saturday afternoon in China's far western Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. Nine attackers, armed with knives and axes, were shot dead during the attack in Serikbuya, Bachu county in Kashi prefecture, some 1,200 kilometers southwest from the regional capital Urumqi. Two employees working with local police were killed and another two were injured, the Xinhua News Agency reported on Saturday, citing local police. Various regional government departments reached by the Global Times declined to comment on the attack, saying further investigation into the case is under way. Chen Li, director of the Publicity Office of Kashi, told the Global Times on Sunday that the regional government has not yet defined it as a terrorist attack. Dilxat Raxit, a spokesman for the Munich-based World Uyghur Congress, told Bloomberg that all the assailants were ethnic Uyghurs and they went to the police station to protest. Wang Ping, a professor of ethnic issues with Xinjiang Normal University, argued that the assailants aim to split the region from China and cause inter-ethnic misunderstanding. "From what they did and the consequences caused, their intentions are like terrorists," Wang said. "They are aiming to split the region from China and attract international attention." The assault came in the wake of last month's terrorist attack in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. On October 28, three suspects drove a car loaded with 400 liters of gasoline and rammed into crowds just below Mao Zedong's portrait, leaving five dead and injuring 40 others. It was the first time in recent years that Beijing has seen a terror attack carried out by Uyghur extremists. However, Xinjiang is no stranger to terrorist strikes. On April 23, also in Bachu, 21 police officers and community workers were killed by armed terrorists. Two men were sentenced to death and another three to prison sentences. Lu Fugui, deputy head of Xinhe county, Aqsu prefecture, told the Global Times that the key to Xinjiang's development is ethnic unity. "The key to promoting further development in Xinjiang is to maintain social stability and ethnic unity," Lu said. To prevent and end social disruptions and improve public security, China will establish a State Security Committee, according to a communique issued last week after the Third Plenary Session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee. Li Guoqiang, deputy director of the Center for Chinese Borderland History and Geography at Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times that the series of attacks have proved the necessity of establishing a State Security Committee. ^ top ^

 

Hongkong

Hong Kong, Philippines issue joint statement on Manila hostage crisis
2013-11-19
The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) government and the Philippine government issued a joint statement on the Manila hostage crisis on Tuesday. According to the statement, C Y Leung, the chief executive of the HKSAR, met with Philippine President Benigno S Aquino III on the sidelines of the APEC summit in Bali, Indonesia on Oct. 7, during which both leaders agreed to work towards a mutually satisfactory solution to the Manila hostage-taking incident. The two leaders designated Director of the Chief Executive's Office Edward Yau and Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras as their representatives respectively to address the four demands of the victims and their families, and interactions between the two sides commenced immediately thereafter, the statement said. It said following his visit to Hong Kong on Oct. 21, 2013, Almendras returned to Hong Kong on Nov. 19, 2013 for further discussions with Yau and the Secretary for Security, Lai Tung-kwok. In the meetings, there were in-depth and constructive exchanges, and Almendras updated the HKSAR government on progress made in finding a satisfactory response to the four demands. The statement said Aquino, having heard of the urgent need of Yik Siu-ling for surgeries, instructed Almendras to turn over to the HKSAR government an additional token of solidarity to defray the cost of imminent surgeries, citing it was made available through donations from Filipino businessmen as a manifestation of the Filipinos' humane consideration of the plight of the victims and their families, without prejudice to the ongoing ministerial level discussions to address the four demands. The statement also said both sides are confident that through continuous efforts, the discussions will achieve the objective set out by C Y Leung and Aquino, and both sides reaffirmed their agreement to report the outcome to their people when substantive progress has been achieved. Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung said on Nov. 5 that the city government would take necessary actions unless substantial progress is made within one month by the Philippine side in responding to the four demands of victims and bereaved families. Eight Hong Kong tourists died after a dismissed policeman took a busload of tourists hostage on Aug. 23, 2010 in Manila. A botched police rescue attempt prompted him to open fire on his hostages before he was himself gunned down. Following the hostage crisis, Hong Kong demanded an apology from the Philippine government, compensation for the victims and bereaved families, punishment of the officials responsible, and improvement for tourist safety. The Philippine president has consistently refused to make an open apology, saying it is against the Philippine culture to apologize for mistake of individuals.^ top ^

 

Taiwan

Taiwan 'needs to rethink' foreign policy after Gambia exit (SCMP)
2013.11.18
Taiwan has a lot of soul searching to do over how far its "flexible diplomacy" policy can go after the Gambia became the first country in nearly six years to cut ties with the island, local analysts said yesterday.It took Taipei until yesterday to finally announce the end of bilateral ties after the tiny West African nation surprised the island by declaring on Friday a rupture of diplomatic relations. The first move of the government of mainland-friendly President Ma Ying-jeou was to check if the so-called "China factor" was behind the Gambia's action. It breathed a sigh of relief when Beijing later denied it had anything to do with it, and that it had no intention to establish diplomatic ties with the African nation. Taiwanese lawmakers were swift to ask the Ma government what had gone wrong. "If Ma's so-called flexible diplomacy policy bears fruit and allows Taiwan to celebrate diplomatic harvests, I don't know how you can explain such a humiliating act from the Gambia, which cut ties with us without even bothering to give us prior notice," said Chiu Yi-ying, a legislator for the opposition Democratic Progressive Party. She shot the question at Foreign Minister David Lin during a legislature meeting yesterday to discuss the issue. The Gambia only informed Taiwan about the rupture early on Friday morning, roughly one hour ahead of the first reports of the news in foreign media. Both Lin and Premier Jiang Yi-huah later admitted they had been left in the dark before the abrupt notice. No country had abrogated diplomatic ties with Taiwan since Ma took office in May 2008, a fact that has been attributed to his policy of engaging Beijing and causing a warming of cross-strait relations. Ma had called for a "diplomatic truce" with the mainland and finally won a tacit agreement with Beijing not to poach each other's allies. He described it as "flexible diplomacy", which would leave Taiwan some international room while helping the two sides save money. Local analysts said Ma's flexible diplomacy policy was based on the theory that Beijing would not try to win diplomatic recognition from Taiwan's allies. "But at the same time, it makes the Ma government pay less attention to its allies, as reflected by the cut of almost 50 per cent in its foreign-affairs related budget from NT$18 billion (HK$4.7 billion) in 2008," said Hsu Kuo-yung, a political-talk-show host. Lin Yu-fang, a legislator for the ruling Kuomintang, revealed yesterday that Gambian President Yahya Jammeh had previously demanded US$30 million from Taiwan, but was refused by Ma's government. Professor Tung Chen-yuan, director of the Graduate Institute of Development Studies at National Chengchi University in Taipei, said Ma should not base his foreign policy solely on retaining mainland goodwill. "His flexible diplomacy policy has a limit," Tung said. ^ top ^

 

Economy

S. Korea, China launch 8th round of FTA talks (Xinhua)
2013.11.18
South Korea and China on Monday launched the eighth round of talks for a bilateral free trade deal, Seoul's trade ministry said. The five-day talks, or the first for the second-stage negotiations, were held at the Songdo international business district in Incheon, 40 kilometers west of the country's capital Seoul, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy ( MOTIE). The two neighbors completed the first-stage negotiations in early September with a total of seven rounds of talks, agreeing on the modality, or basic guidelines for the Sino-Korea FTA. Based on the first-phase talks, the second-stage negotiations will discuss items that will be liberalized by lowering or removing tariff barriers. In the previous round of talks, Seoul and Beijing tentatively agreed to abolish tariffs on 90 percent of all products in terms of the number of items, and 85 percent of imports in terms of their monetary value. China is South Korea's No. 1 trading partner, with Seoul's exports to Beijing accounting for a quarter of the total in 2012. Since the two neighbors established diplomatic ties in 1992, their annual trade has grown almost 50 times and reached 256 billion U.S. dollars in 2012. ^ top ^

PBOC to let yuan float more freely (China Daily)
2013-11-20
China is poised to take yet another step in making the yuan a free-floating currency, according to central bank Governor Zhou Xiaochuan. The People's Bank of China, the country's central bank, intends to further widen the yuan's daily trading band as it boosts the currency's convertibility, Zhou was quoted as saying by Bloomberg in a newly published book explaining the reform guideline outlined last week following a meeting of the Party leaders. A central bank official confirmed the existence of the book to China Daily on Tuesday. China currently provides a daily reference rate for the yuan to the foreign exchange market as it seeks a stable exchange rate for China's fast-growing yet nascent market economy. Daily fluctuation is now at 1 percent north and south of the reference rate, after being widened last year from 0.5 percent, and 0.3 percent in 2007. "A freer yuan is compatible with the reality in the foreign exchange market," said Lian Ping, chief economist with Bank of Communications Ltd in Beijing. China's capital flow has evolved into two-way movement, he said, and a yuan able to move in a wider range will help smooth capital flows and lay a better foundation for real economy activities. Wang Jianhui, chief economist with Southwest Securities Co Ltd, said that unshackling the yuan will come in phases, and the currency won't float freely at the beginning. "Any reforms will proceed in baby steps. That's how they do things in the central bank," he said. The PBOC on Tuesday set the yuan's midpoint price 15 basis points higher to 6.1317 against the US dollar, according to the China Foreign Exchange Trading System. That's only two basis points lower than a record high of 6.1315. Twelve-month non-deliverable forwards gained 0.19 percent to 6.1495 per dollar in Hong Kong. The yuan slipped 0.01 percent to close at 6.0927 per dollar in Shanghai. The Bloomberg US Dollar Index, which monitors the greenback against 10 major counterparts, dropped 0.1 percent to 1,014.68 after touching 1,013.11, the lowest since Nov 6. In the book, Zhou also promised to cancel volume limits on trial programs that give foreign fund managers access to Chinese capital markets and Chinese managers to foreign markets, as it speeds up efforts to boost the yuan's convertibility. "China will speed up the process for the yuan to become fully convertible and strengthen supervision on hot money," Zhou wrote. Quotas under the qualified foreign institutional investor program and the qualified domestic institutional investor program will be expanded and then erased, Zhou wrote. The yuan is fully convertible under the current account, which registers trade-related fund flows. Under the capital account system, though, the country subjects a few types of payments to administrative approval, over fears that excess speculation in financial markets will unsettle stability. The central bank has talked about making the country's capital account more convertible for quite some time, but analysts believe that it's ready to take bigger steps now that the 60-point reform blueprint published last week promises to open up the financial industry. A ceiling on deposit rates offered by Chinese banks also will be phased out, PBOC Deputy Governor Yi Gang wrote in the book. ^ top ^

China to improve evaluation system to cut GDP obsession (Xinhua)
2013.11.20
China will improve its evaluation system for measuring economic performance, putting greater emphasis on growth quality to cut local obsession with GDP data, according to the head of the country's top economic planner. China will increase the weight of factors such as resource consumption, environmental cost, work safety and local debt in assessing local economic growth, and put more emphasis on employment, resident income, social security and people's health, Xu Shaoshi, head of the National Development and Reform Commission, said during an interview Tuesday. "This is intended to guide local authorities to shift more attention to economic restructuring," he said, adding that the new mechanism will take regional differences into consideration. In past decades, the promotion of Chinese officials largely hinged on economic performance, which prompted local governments to boost growth by investing in capital- and energy-intensive industries despite environmental costs. As China tries to bring the economy onto a more sustainable track, the central authorities have been at pains to fix obsessions with GDP figures. Earlier this year, Chinese President Xi Jinping said China will not assess the performance of officials simply based on their records of boosting the economy, and promised to adopt more comprehensive criteria. ^ top ^

 

DPRK and South Korea

China confirms visit by U.S. envoy for DPRK (Xinhua)
2013.11.21
Chinese Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that U.S. envoy for the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) is now in Beijing for a three-day visit. Glyn Davies, the U.S. special representative for policy on the DPRK, started the visit on Tuesday, Spokesman Hong Lei said at a daily press briefing. When asked about the talks between Davies and his Chinese counterpart Wu Dawei, Hong said information about the talks "will be released at an appropriate time." This is the second meeting between Davies and Wu in less than a month following their meeting in Washington. Davies will travel on to Seoul and Tokyo later this week. Earlier this month, Wu paid a visit to the DPRK. China has maintained close contact and communication with all members of the six-party talks on the Korean Peninsular nuclear issue, Hong said. "Under current circumstances, we hope that relevant parties can show wisdom and come back to the track of dialogue and consultations as soon as possible to promote an early resumption of the six-party talks," Hong said. He reiterated that China would like to work with all parties concerned to push forward the six-party talks and implement the Sept. 19 Joint Statement in a comprehensive and balanced way. In the Sept. 19 Joint Statement, signed in 2005, the DPRK promised to abandon all its nuclear weapons and existing nuclear programs. The six-party talks, convening the DPRK, the Republic of Korea, China, the United States, Russia and Japan, have been stalled since late 2008. ^ top ^

 

Mongolia

European Commission President has conducted an official visit to Mongolia (Infomongolia)
2013.11.18
The European Commission President, Mr. Jose Manuel Barroso paid an official visit to Mongolia upon the invitation of the President of Mongolia Ts.Elbegdorj on November 17-18, 2013. During the visit, President Ts.Elbegdorj held official talks with the EC President J.M.Barroso. At the meetings, the parties reviews the present state of bilateral relations and discussed on furthering and developing bilateral cooperation in the trade, economic and investment sectors and in the fields of education, science, research and innovation. In particular, the sides focused on issues related to the opening of EU diplomatic mission in Ulaanbaatar, the final solution to the exclusion of Mongolia from the EU list of non-market economy countries, the cooperation for accession to Bologna Convention, and continuing the utilization of GSP+ scheme. As a part of his visit, Mr. Barroso gave a lecture on prospects of Mongolia-EU relationship for teachers and students of National University of Mongolia (NUM). At the meantime, Mr. Barroso was awarded with a title of “Honorary Doctorate” of the NUM. Furthermore, Mr. Barroso delivered remarks at the opening ceremony for EU Film Festival. The official visit paid by EU, the third neighbor of Mongolia, at the top level to Mongolia, had a great significance for consolidating bilateral political relations and trust for bringing bilateral cooperation up to the partnership level and strengthening Mongolia's prestige not only in EU, but in the world. ^ top ^

Mongolia wants to resolve mine dispute with Rio Tinto by early 2014 (News.mn)
2013.11.21
Mongolia hopes the $5 billion expansion of a giant copper and gold mine can start next year as it works to resolve a dispute with global mining giant Rio Tinto, its partner on the project, a government source said. But Rio Tinto may be reluctant to push on too quickly due to bleak market conditions, the source said, with copper prices down more than 10 percent in 2013 and expected to drop further on a flood of new supplies from South America and Africa. The company was not immediately available for comment. Copper shipments from the first phase of the Oyu Tolgoi project started in June, but Rio Tinto put plans to build an underground mine on hold in late July amid complaints by Mongolia that costs had spiraled out of control and that its interests had not been fully served. Mongolia, looking to find the revenues to fund ambitious social and infrastructure plans, is keen to press ahead with a project that is set to account for a third of its total economy by 2020 once the underground mine is built. Foreign investors also see the way the government develops Oyu Tolgoi as a key indicator of the country"s willingness to do business. "Our side is committed to starting the second phase as soon as possible and we can agree on certain issues in December or January and plan development," said the source, who is involved in Mongolia"s discussions with Rio Tinto but did not want to disclose his name. "Both sides are working on the updated feasibility study. After that, if both sides agree, there will be no challenges. I hope we can agree early next year." With Rio"s new chief executive Sam Walsh focused on slashing costs, cutting capital spending and paying down $22 billion in debt, there is some question on how soon the company would want to go ahead with the Oyu Tolgoi expansion. "That is fine - we can understand that, but what we cannot accept is that the Mongolian government is the only reason for the delay... I hope the market will understand that," the source said. […] ^ top ^

 

Ludivine Candiotti
Embassy of Switzerland
 

The Press review is a random selection of political and social related news gathered from various media and news services located in the PRC, edited or translated by the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing and distributed among Swiss Government Offices. The Embassy does not accept responsibility for accuracy of quotes or truthfulness of content. Additionally the contents of the selected news mustn't correspond to the opinion of the Embassy.
 
Page created and hosted by SinOptic Back to the top of the page To SinOptic - Services and Studies on the Chinese World's Homepage