Wandering China

An East/West pulse of China's fourth rise from down under.

Australian ‘spy’ jailed by China [The Age]

Australian ‘spy’ jailed by China
Anne Davies
Source – The Age, published February 1, 2011

AN AUSTRALIAN citizen, James Sun, has spent the past five years in prison in China, with two years on death row, after being convicted of being a spy for Taiwan. He is now serving a life sentence in Beijing Prison No.2, living in harsh conditions.

Yet Mr Sun’s case has never come to light, even though the Australian government has known about it since 2006.

Now his partner, who was four months pregnant at the time of his arrest, has become so desperate that she is prepared to go public. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Back to China, Beijing Consensus, Chinese overseas, Crime, Culture, Human Rights, Influence, International Relations, Mapping Feelings, Politics, The Age

China’s Li Na hailed as ‘pioneer’ for first Slam bid [The Age/AFP]

Should have made my way down to the Australian Open to catch a glimpse of China’s newer flagship models – Li Na, now considered a national hero in the vein of Yao Ming and Liu Xiang.

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China’s Li Na hailed as ‘pioneer’ for first Slam bid
Susan Stumme
Source – The Age, published January 28, 2011

China’s tennis chief has hailed Li Na, the first Asian woman to reach a Grand Slam final, as a “pioneer” and national sports hero on a par with NBA great Yao Ming and star hurdler Liu Xiang.

Li, 28, upset world number one Caroline Wozniacki in the Australian Open semi-finals on Thursday in three tough sets, setting up a historic final clash with three-time US Open champion Kim Clijsters on Saturday.

“Li’s Grand Chance,” blared the China Daily on its front page, underneath a picture of the smiling player from Wuhan, pumping her fist as she celebrated her victory, while the Titan sports newspaper declared “Li Makes History”.

Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: AFP, Culture, Domestic Growth, Influence, Mapping Feelings, Nationalism, People, Soft Power, Sport, The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

Rich Chinese Women Open Throttle on `Man’s World’ With $400,000 Maseratis [Bloomberg]

Contemporary China – where women have the desire and ability to seek equal standing with male counterparts.

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Rich Chinese Women Open Throttle on `Man’s World’ With $400,000 Maseratis
Liza Lin
Source – Bloomberg, published January 14, 2011

Beijing resident Lily Liu has always liked driving fast, and she doesn’t mind spending to indulge that passion.

Liu, 44, bought a gray Porsche AG 911 Carrera S two years ago for 1.2 million yuan ($182,000) and is shopping for an Aston Martin, the sports car made famous by James Bond movies. The construction company president said she is “quite proud” of being the center of attention when she motors around the city.

“Fast cars have always been a man’s world,” Liu said. “Women buying such cars are just seeking an equal standing with our male counterparts.” Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Automotive, Bloomberg, Chinese Model, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Influence, Lifestyle, Media, Nationalism, Public Diplomacy, Social, Trade

In China, Hu’s Successor Is Being Quietly Groomed [New York Times]

There is little in his record to suggest that he intends to steer China in a sharply different direction. But some political observers also say that he may have broader support within the party than Mr. Hu, which could give him more leeway to experiment with new ideas.

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In China, Hu’s Successor Is Being Quietly Groomed
By EDWARD WONG and JONATHAN ANSFIELD
Source – New York Times, published January 23, 2011

BEIJING — President Hu Jintao of China returned home this weekend after a trip intended to repair relations with the United States. But the next time the White House marches out the honor guard and polishes the crystal for a Chinese leader, it is unlikely to be for Mr. Hu.

Following a secretive succession plan sketched out years ago, Mr. Hu has already begun preparing for his departure from power, passing the baton to his presumed successor, a former provincial leader named Xi Jinping, now China’s vice president. While Mr. Xi is expected next year to formally take the reins in China, the world’s second-largest economy and fastest-modernizing military power, he remains a cipher to most people, even within China.

But an extended look at Mr. Xi’s past shows that his rise has been built on a combination of political acumen, family connections and ideological dexterity. Like the country he will run, he has nimbly maintained the primacy of the Communist Party, while making economic growth the party’s main business. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Chinese Model, Communications, Domestic Growth, Economics, International Relations, Internet, National Medium- and Long- term Talent Development Plan, Nationalism, New Leadership, New York Times, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Strategy

China growth signals looming rate rise [The Age/Reuters]

China growth signals looming rate rise
Reuters
Source – The Age, published January 20, 2011 – 1:06PM

China finished 2010 with a bang, its growth soaring past expectations while inflation slowed less than expected, numbers that could prod the government to ratchet up its easy-does-it approach to policy tightening.

Food costs, the main driver of Chinese inflation, have picked up in recent weeks, showing that Beijing has its work cut out to keep a lid on price pressures.

But other important December data, from factory output to investment, painted a picture of stable expansion, suggesting the world’s second-largest economy was free from overheating, despite the surprise jump in growth. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Chinese Model, Domestic Growth, Economics, Inflation, National Medium- and Long- term Talent Development Plan, People, Politics, Population, Social, The Age

China’s Hu lands in US for state visit [The Age/AFP]

China’s Hu lands in US for state visit
Stephen Collinson
Source – The Age, published January 19, 2011

China’s President Hu Jintao arrived in the United States Tuesday for a state visit promising frank talk over economics and currency disputes, but likely to expose a wide gulf over human rights.

Hu landed at Andrews Air Force base and was expected soon afterwards at the White House for a rare private dinner hosted by President Barack Obama in recognition of the key nature of a relationship under severe recent strain.

US military officers rolled out a red carpet and gave full military honors complete with a brass band to the Chinese leader, who arrived at the base, just outside Washington, aboard an Air China jet. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: AFP, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Culture, Economics, Influence, International Relations, Media, Nationalism, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Strategy, U.S.

Cashed-up Chinese climbing tourism ladder [The Age]

One wonders if these cashed-up Chinese would make good ambassadors for China.

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Cashed-up Chinese climbing tourism ladder
Doug Dingwall
Source – The Age, published January 16, 2011

CHINESE are on the way to becoming the new Japanese of Australian tourism.

Predicted to overtake Americans to become Australia’s fourth-largest group of inbound holidaymakers this year, Chinese tourists are well on the way to moving up a spot at the expense of the Japanese.

And while the Japanese like to snorkel, the Chinese like to gamble. In 2009, 34 per cent of Chinese tourists visited a casino, compared with 16 per cent of all other tourists. The total inbound economic value per Chinese visitor (which includes business travellers, those visiting family and friends and tourists) was $7287, compared with $3420 for the Japanese. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Influence, International Relations, People, Population, Public Diplomacy, Social

China will never seek hegemony: official [China Daily]

China repeats its official stance.

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China will never seek hegemony: official
Xinhua
Source – China Daily, published January 16, 2011

BEIJING – China will never seek hegemony, regardless of its growing power, Vice Foreign Minister Cui Tiankai reiterated the official stance Friday.

Cui made the remarks at the second Lanting (Blue Hall) Forum in response to a question on whether China will gradually ignore its former leader Deng Xiaoping’ teaching of “maintaining a low profile”.

Cui said that although China’s state power had greatly strengthened over the past 30 years after the reform and opening up, China would not change its foreign policy or its development goals, “as it’s not in accordance with China’s long term interests.”
Cui also said it was true that China has made notable progress over the past few years, but it was also true that China still lagged far behind the United States. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Beijing Consensus, Charm Offensive, China Daily, Chinese Model, Culture, Domestic Growth, Economics, Influence, International Relations, Nationalism, Politics, Public Diplomacy, Soft Power, Tao Guang Yang Hui (韬光养晦), The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

230 million expected to go home by train [China Daily]

230 million passengers, almost 2,300 trains daily to cope with the sheer numbers of migrant workers traveling home for the Chinese Spring Festival (New Year for the Chinese) – these numbers are always staggering to think about in this number-intensive report.

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230 million expected to go home by train
By Bao Daozu
Source – China Daily, published January 16, 2011

Passengers queue to buy tickets at a temporary ticket agency in Ningbo, East China's Zhejiang province, Jan 15, 2011. Photo/Xinhua

Wang Zhiguo, vice-minister of railways, said at a press conference that 293 more trains will be added on the country’s rail tracks every day to help take 25.54 million more travelers back home during the period, making the number of trains in service at the average of 2,265.5 per day.

This year, the Lunar New Year’s Day will come 11 days earlier than last year, causing an overlap of passenger flow made up of students, migrant workers and travelers going home that may create congestion for the country’s rail routes. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Automotive, China Daily, Chinese Model, Domestic Growth, Economics, High Speed Rail, Lifestyle, Migrant Workers, Migration (Internal), People, Population, Social, Transport

Chinese fighter ‘has changed power balance’ [The Age]

Chinese fighter ‘has changed power balance’
Dan Oakes
Source – The Age, published January 15, 2011

The world has been shocked by the unveiling of the J-20, a new Chinese stealth fighter aircraft. Photo: Reuters

THE shock unveiling of a new Chinese stealth fighter aircraft has changed Asia’s power balance and means Australia must dramatically rethink its regional strategy, according to an Australian analyst.

Peter Goon, a vehement critic of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Australia has committed to buying from the United States, says the Chinese J-20 is far superior to the American fighter and Australia must immediately adapt to the new status quo.

The Chinese tested the J-20 for the first time last week, on the day that US Secretary of Defence Robert Gates arrived in Beijing for talks. Although the Chinese claimed the timing was coincidental, Mr Gates expressed concerns about the military’s motives. Read the rest of this entry »

Filed under: Australia, Aviation, Beijing Consensus, Domestic Growth, Economics, Influence, International Relations, J-20, military, Nationalism, Public Diplomacy, The Age, The Chinese Identity, The construction of Chinese and Non-Chinese identities

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