November 15 – 23
https://supchina.com/2018/11/14/even-propagandist-eric-x-li-falls-victim-to-a-new-censorship-campaign/ Another sweeping crackdown on social media.
https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2018/11/23/the-uighurs-and-chinas-long-history-of-trouble-with-islam/ Great essay by Ian Johnson on Islam’s place in China, past and present. Winds up discussing the “education camps” in Xinjiang to which, according to reliable reports, more than a million Xinjiang Uighurs have been sent to wean them from “terrorist” inclinations.
https://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/united-states/article/2173519/catch-wealthy-east-coast-chinas-rising-western Chongqing and Chengdu growing well, but barriers inhibit more rapid investment by foreign firms. Good piece on two terrific cities.
https://tinyurl.com/y7bj2bnz Interesting and informative Sinica podcast with Lucy Hornby, the clear-eyed veteran journalist now with the Financial Times in Beijing, mainly on “shadow banking” and the whole phenomenon of alternative financing in China’s economy – and in the economy of some of China’s neighbors.
https://www.ft.com/content/8620933a-e0c5-11e8-a6e5-792428919cee Signs of cooling of hyperactive energy in China’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) world. (Paywall)
https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/2173975/beijing-must-show-courage-fulfil-its-market-promises-says At a Caixin conference, 88 year-old economist and architect of “Reform and Opening” Wu Jinglian calls for vigorous implementation of economic “reform,” against a background of slower reform, reassertion of state power in the economy, and endless resistance by “vested interests,” the same anti-reform crowd that led to Xi Jinping’s reformist accession in 2012.
https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-22/trump-pressure-on-made-in-china-2025-is-doing-beijing-a-favor A sensible commentary arguing that the kind of massive government protections and subsidies exemplified by the now-infamous “Made in China 2025” program may ultimately do China more harm than good, and that China would be better off making some modifications of its statist-market economic framework now than later.
https://www.nybooks.com/daily/2018/11/23/the-uighurs-and-chinas-long-history-of-trouble-with-islam/ Ian Johnson’s useful essay on the long historical interplay, usually unpleasant, between China and Islam.
https://supchina.com/2018/11/15/african-swine-fever-epidemic-is-now-serious/ Spread of the swine fever epidemic in China. See also https://www.caixinglobal.com/2018-11-15/china-blames-spread-of-deadly-pig-disease-on-lawless-elements-and-dirty-vehicles-101347579.html for deeper detail and analysis of potential global impacts.
https://tinyurl.com/y82ygpw7 Daniel Blumenthal, no friend of the PRC, writing for the American Enterprise Institute, also no friend of the PRC but a good friend of Israel, expresses dismay at Israel’s increasingly close relationship with China, and warns Israel to mend its ways (and align with the Trump Administration on China) while there is still time.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/josh-rogin/wp/2018/11/20/inside-chinas-tantrum-diplomacy-at-apec/?utm_term=.8ad4a09c38b2 Washington Post’s Josh Rogin, whose gloomy, sometimes fiery, appraisals of the PRC and its leadership have accompanied his rise to prominence in the Washington commentariat, scorches the PRC in this report from the scene at the APEC Summit in Papua New Guinea. Hard to tell where the line lies between news rapportage and opinion writing.
https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2018-11-18/china-s-rules-on-genome-research-are-too-restrictive A critique of Chinese regulatory treatment of genomic data, i.e., as a national property, to be segregated from the global sharing processes going on elsewhere. An Opinion article.
https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/2173462/china-sends-written-response-us-trade-war-demands-washington Beginning of serious haggling or just more media fizz before expected Trump-Xi meeting at G-20?
https://www.politico.com/story/2018/11/20/lighthizer-china-trump-trade-tariffs-986829 Pre-Summit fizz? Lighthizer claims PRC has not done what it must do on US objections itemized in last spring’s Section 301 report. When you think about it, ten days before an increasingly “buzzed” meeting between Xi and Trump, one could hardly expect any US figure to claim that the PRC was doing a great job. The 53-page USTR “Update” of the 301 Report is at https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/enforcement/301Investigations/301%20Report%20Update.pdf .
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/19/world/asia/apec-us-china-trade.html US-China ugliness at APEC in Papua New Guinea. Pence as US Designated Hitter in intensifying war of words with China.
https://nationalinterest.org/feature/chinese-century-early-appraisal-36082?page=0%2C2 At an unlikely outlet (The National Interest), the first of two articles arguing that, as the US under Trump walks away from the stable international systems whose creation it had fostered, those who are perceiving the PRC waltzing into the resulting vacuum are mistaken.
https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/11/19/2018-25221/review-of-controls-for-certain-emerging-technologies The United States Department of Commerce announces a thirty-day period for receiving public comments as it prepares to write new export control regulations covering “certain emerging technologies” deemed relevant to U.S. national security. While China is not mentioned in this announcement, concern over defense- and security-related transfers and exports of U.S. technology to the PRC is unquestionably the major driver of this move to write new export control rules.
https://www.scmp.com/news/world/united-states-canada/article/2174229/us-restrict-foreign-investments-ai-biotech-curbing South China Morning Post take, and further commentary, on the impending issuance of new US export control regs, covering transfers of knowledge and technology in areas deemed to be national security-sensitive. A useful work-through.
https://www.ft.com/content/46f85f8a-e33b-11e8-a6e5-792428919cee Related (unfortunately, paywalled) story: PRC manufacturers of ultra-sophisticated facial recognition equipment used in pervasive government surveillance (e.g. against Uighurs in Xinjiang) heavily reliant on U.S.-made microchips. U.S. may take measures against their export.
https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2018/11/18/world/asia/china-social-mobility.html Important, and portentous. Chinese more optimistic than Americans about bettering their station in the future, thanks to decades of rapid growth in PRC. Good graphics.
https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/2173779/chinas-former-chief-trade-negotiator-criticises-beijings Almost unheard of. The courageous Long Yongtu, chief Chinese negotiator of China’s WTO accession, allows himself to be publicly quoted criticizing PRC moves against agricultural imports from the U.S.
https://amp.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/2173858/end-trade-war-china-must-deliver-its-promises-reform-open Relevant to the preceding item; another veteran Chinese Commerce Ministry official with U.S. relations pedigree comments unexpectedly on the current trade imbroglio.
https://thehill.com/opinion/cybersecurity/417357-trump-ups-the-ante-in-fight-against-chinas-flagrant-ip-theft AEI’s Claude Barfield sums up the enhanced – and sure to be further enhanced – US effort to combat PRC theft of high-end intellectual property, through a concerted Justice Department China Initiative. The Initiative, announced November 1, may be read at https://www.justice.gov/opa/speech/file/1107256/download .
https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/2174566/united-states-voids-10-year-multiple-entry-visas-some-chinese Early signs of cancellation of extant 10-yr. US visas for certain Chinese travelers (e.g., research scholars in Sino-American relations), on top of tougher visa treatment for Chinese in advanced technology sectors.