No easy solution for Sanchi tanker leak off China's east coast as oil spill expands

Recovery teams continue to search for a way to stop an Iranian tanker from spewing oil off China’s east coast as the size of the slick continues to grow, a source in Shanghai’s port authority says. 
The spill from the Sanchi has more than trebled in size, just over a week after the ship sank in a ball of flames and threatened to unleash an environmental catas­trophe. Authorities have spotted three oil slicks with a total surface area of 332 sq km (128 square miles),…
Source: SCMP – China

US weighing ‘many billions’ of dollars in sanctions on Chinese items via accelerated probe

The administration of US President Donald Trump is considering releasing the results of its investigation into China’s alleged theft of intellectual property ahead of schedule, a move that could speed up the probe and set sanctions against Chinese products worth “many billions” of US dollars into motion, a trade analyst said.
Derek Scissors, a trade expert at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, told the South China Morning Post that an announcement of the initial…
Source: SCMP – China

Four cities played outsize role in Chinese economy

Nearly an eighth of China’s economic output was generated by just four cities last year, data from local authorities shows, adding fuel to the debate over the risks of relying on a handful of metropolises to drive national growth.
Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen and Guangzhou contributed a combined 10 trillion yuan (US$1.56 trillion) to output in 2017, according to the data. Yet that economic heft rests on a sliver of population, with the four accounting for just 5 per cent of China’s 1…
Source: SCMP – China

Hong Kong bookseller Gui Minhai ‘snatched’ by mainland Chinese authorities from train to Beijing

Hong Kong-based publisher Gui Minhai, one of the Causeway Bay booksellers whose disappearance two years ago caused an international storm, was snatched again by mainland Chinese authorities from a train heading for Beijing over the weekend, his daughter reported on Monday.

Angela Gui told the Post that her father, accompanied by two Swedish diplomats, was travelling from Ningbo city in Zhejiang province on Saturday when around 10 police officers in plain clothes boarded their train near the…
Source: SCMP – China

Trust crisis in US institutions as Chinese confidence rises, Edelman global poll finds

The Chinese public have the greatest confidence in their institutions while domestic trust in authorities in the United States crashed by a record margin during US President Donald Trump’s first year in office, according to a major survey released on the eve of the World Economic Forum in Davos.
The sharp contrast revealed by the annual Edelman Trust Barometer followed a Gallup poll last week showing more people around the world considered China, rather than the US, a global leader,…
Source: SCMP – China

Young girl with leukaemia’s letter to father moves Chinese

A letter written by a seven-year-old Chinese girl with leukaemia to her father has touched the hearts of many readers who have donated 600,000 yuan (US$93,700) to help with her treatment.
The letter was penned by Zhang Jiaye who comes from a village near Jiamusi in Heilongjiang province in northeast China, the news website K618.cn reported.
No details were given of when or how the letter was made public, but donations started pouring in last September.
“Dad, I saw you cry today. I’m…
Source: SCMP – China

China says US forcing it to strengthen presence in South China Sea

China’s Communist Party mouthpiece, decrying Washington as a troublemaker, said on Monday US moves in the South China Sea like last week’s freedom of navigation operation would only cause China to strengthen its deployments in the disputed waterway.
China’s foreign ministry said the USS Hopper destroyer came within 12 nautical miles of Huangyan Island, which is better known as the Scarborough Shoal and is subject to a rival claim by the Philippines, a historic ally of the…
Source: SCMP – China

Could online classrooms be the answer to teacher shortage in rural China?

One of the biggest barriers to educating China’s rural poor is finding enough teachers willing to take up jobs in remote and impoverished areas, but a group of tech-savvy teachers in the east of the country say they may have a solution.
Over the past 4½ years, Wang Fei and her colleagues have incorporated online lessons into their students’ timetables in various subjects including English, which was not previously offered at their middle school.
Students attend the lessons at…
Source: SCMP – China

Suez Canal and Hambantota: spot the difference

Last week China’s foreign minister Wang Yi was obliged to come out in defence of Beijing’s practice of making hefty loans to developing countries, increasing their debt burdens. Unlike debts to Western countries, the developing world’s debts to China are benign, he insisted. Wang was speaking in Luanda, the capital of Angola, days after the African oil-exporter was forced to devalue its currency, the kwanza. Faced with dwindling foreign reserves and a mounting balance of…
Source: SCMP – China

Chinese bank fined over multibillion-dollar bad-debt cover-up

China’s banking regulator has slapped a 462 million yuan (US$72 million) fine on a bank branch over a massive shell company fraud, as Beijing continues to crack down on financial risks.
The China Banking Regulatory Commission said Shanghai Pudong Development Bank’s Chengdu branch – which had long claimed to have “zero” non-performing loans – falsified loan applications and granted other unapproved funds to cover up its pile of bad debts.
In all, the branch…
Source: SCMP – China

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