Friday, November 9, 2012

Leadership Change Chinese Style

The upcoming 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC), scheduled to open Thursday, will be attended by 2,270 delegates. The following are changes in the makeup of delegates, compared with that at the 17th Party congress in 2007. How does the work done in Congress affect the people?

Delegates election shows CPC's vitality On Monday, the Communist Party of China (CPC) published a list of newly elected delegates to attend its upcoming National Congress, which convenes once every five years.

After a subsequent qualification check, those 2,270 representatives are expected to deliberate and decide vital issues on the party and the country on behalf of some 82 million party members and the entire Chinese population.

The selection and election process served as a vivid application of the CPC's principle of democratic centralism and demonstrated its vigorous vitality.

A political task of vital importance Last October, the 17th Central Committee of the CPC decided at its sixth plenary session that the Party's 18th National Congress would be held in Beijing in the second half of 2012.

It was widely believed that the 18th National Congress, held at a critical period of the country's reform and development, would have profound influence on the party's role in leading the country, by having a clear understanding of the situation, and reaching a consensus.

It would seem that China's stepping stone approach is working better that taking a great leap into the vast unknown of hot to hold elections that would fairly represent the 56 Nationalities as well as the various vocations and professions. Thus, the selection and election of delegates served as groundwork for a successful session. The CPC Central Committee attached great importance to the process, with general secretary Hu Jintao giving instructions on several occasions.

Actually, the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and its Standing Committee had discussed the selection last August and clarified the guidelines and policies to be used.

Measures also taken by central authorities to enhance democracy, and the transparency and supervision of the process, while optimizing the structures of the politically reliable delegates, included drawing experiences from the previous selection and election five years ago and making institutional innovations.

Before the selection, the CPC Central Committee decided that a total of 2,270 delegates should be elected by 40 electoral units across the country.

A standard for candidates was also highlighted, clarifying that they should be elite party members with a firm political stand, virtue, fine working style, excellent achievements and comparatively strong capability in fulfilling the duties of a party delegate.

The CPC Central Committee also decided that the number of candidates should be at least 15 percent more than that of the delegates, while the ratio of delegates from the grass-roots level, especially workers, should be increased.

To carry out the plan, the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee offered dedicated training for the election work, distributed flow charts of the selection and supervision procedures.

Intra-Party democracy

To ensure the election of more outstanding delegates and each Party member having access to election information, the CPC has taken various measures to give full play to intra-party democracy through the 10-month-long process of the election.

For a poll held at Woniu village, Xuzhou city of east China's Jiangsu Province in January, 70-year-old Feng Changxi came in his wheelchair to choose a delegate to the CPC's 18th National Congress. "The election is a very important issue," Feng said. "Today, I am bound to come here to vote for the best delegate for the Party."

Liu Xiaonan, a teacher with Peking University, received an E-mail from the university's Party committee which asked her to nominate a delegate candidate when she was studying abroad. "Although overseas, I felt I was always together with the organization as a Party member," Liu replied.

According to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee, up to 98 percent of Party members participated in the election of delegates to the congress.

The CPC, for the first time, carried out a multi-candidate survey on the preliminary candidates of the delegates to the upcoming Party congress.

The loss margins in electing delegates to the congress were raised to 15 percent or above nationwide, according to the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee.

Many local Party committees, for the first time, publicized the list of delegates' names via media channels, in a bid to mobilize the participation of, and solicit feedback from, Party members in the election.

Hubei Daily published a list of 72 preliminary candidates of the delegates and their basic information on February 20, an effort by the province's Party committee to win more public supervision for the election. Diversity, more grass-roots delegates

With a wide span both of ages and occupation, the makeup of delegates to the 18th National Congress of the CPC is appropriate and all ratios set by the CPC Central Committee to realize full representativeness have been fulfilled.

Among the 2,270 delegates, the youngest is Jiao Liuyang, a 21-year-old swimming gold medalist at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Delegates also come from business, technology, education circles and the country's armed forces.

About 30.5 percent of the elected delegates are from the grass-roots level, up 2.1 percentage points from the previous congress in 2007, while 69.5 percent are officials at all levels, down 2.1 percentage points from the previous congress.

Among all the delegates, the number of workers saw the sharpest increase, from 51 in the 17th congress to the current 169, including 26 migrant workers.

"After being elected as a delegate, I will lead other workmates to work harder so as to build a better image of worker Party members," said Pi Jinjun, a migrant worker who serves as a stevedore at Qingdao Port in east China's Shandong Province.

A total of 1,640 delegates joined the CPC after November 1976, accounting for 72.2 percent of the total, 20.5 percentage points higher than that of the congress in 2007, according to Wang Jingqing, deputy head of the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee. "The CPC's cause has been passed from the older generation to the younger generation and maintained its dynamics," Wang said. [source:china daily]

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Across the Border, Laos

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Saturday, October 20, 2012

China Bashing by US Presidential Candidates Milking Latent Racism

BEIJING — Richer and more assertive since the last American presidential campaign, China is looking at the harsh anti-Chinese sentiment being expressed by both candidates with a mixture of aloofness and unease.

The Chinese say they are accustomed to China-bashing during the American election season, but there is growing concern among government officials, business executives and academics here that this time the attitude toward China among the American public and politicians is so hot it may not cool after Election Day.

From accusations of unfair trade practices to a discussion of whether it is proper for the candidates to have investments in Chinese companies, the word “China” came up 22 times, and always negatively, in the debate between President Obama and Mitt Romney last week. In the final presidential debate Monday night, when foreign policy will be the main subject, China is likely to be a center of attention again

This year we see a few changes in the China Bashing that usually accompianies US presedential elections. First, the growing Chinse middle class are watching, and secondly,US news media, like the New Yourk Times, quoted above, have taken notice, and are covering the China Bashing, rather than allowing themselves to be a vector, repeating what the candidates allege.

Even my neighbour asked me what I thought of all the China comments in the second debate. Mind you, it was a forum, and there were no questions from the forum about China Policy. Instead, the Candidates want to be sure all Americans know they are against being soft on China. A third new development, I have not heard either Obama nor Romney state that China was a Communist country.

 Folks, it looks like we have turned a corner.

Friday, March 16, 2012

More Hypocricy From Obama Who Accuses China Over Rare Earths And Solar Energy
According to the US Geological Survey ( deposits of REE-bearing ore exist in California, Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, New York, Wyoming, and Alaska. Substantial reserves also exist in Australia, Canada, South Africa, Greenland, Brazil, and Vietnam. In spite of having 36% of the world’s identified reserves, China accounts for 95 % of global REE production.
Read more:

Even as the U.S. mounts a legal challenge to China's stranglehold on the global market for a class of key minerals, the U.S. Defense Department is playing down the impact on the U.S. military of the Chinese export limits.

The minerals, known as rare earths, are critical to military applications—including smart bombs, laser guidance systems and night-vision equipment—but in a new report, the Defense Department said such uses represent only a "small fraction" of U.S. demand and that military needs can largely be met domestically.

"The growing U.S. supply of these materials is increasingly capable of meeting the consumption of the defense industrial base," says the report, which has been circulated to selected members of Congress in recent days and has been reviewed by The Wall Street Journal.

Whatever the eventual implications for world supplies of rare earths, in some ways a recent Western victory on a somewhat related trade case may have strengthened China’s hand.

The World Trade Organization ordered China last July to dismantle export duties and quotas on nine other industrial raw materials, including bauxite. An appeals tribunal upheld the ruling and added details in late January.

China has been able to study those orders as it has redesigned its export restrictions on rare earths. The new quotas are as stringent as the old ones, making it harder for Western manufacturers to obtain rare earths in the quantities and with the timeliness their factories require. But the revamped quota rules could be easier for China to defend in front of a W.T.O. tribunal, than its earlier policies would have been.

China, for example, has begun requiring its rare earth exporters to obtain a certificate of environmental compliance before they are allowed to make any overseas shipments. That could strengthen China’s claim that export quotas on rare earths are environmentally necessary. Without dispute, the mining and processing of rare earths have many toxic and even radioactive byproducts — which is one reason the West and Japan for decades were reluctant to produce them.

A Malaysian group representing villagers and civil groups will file a legal challenge to the government's decision to approve a massive rare earths plant by Lynas, the Australian mining company .

The Atomic Energy Licensing Board announced late on Wednesday it would grant Lynas a license to operate the first rare earths plant outside China in years, despite public protests over fears of radioactive pollution.

It said Lynas must submit plans for a permanent disposal facility within 10 months and make a $50mn financial guarantee.

Malaysia hopes the Lynas plant will spur growth. But the project has been the subject of heated protests over health and environmental risks posed by potential leaks of radioactive waste.

Florence Looi reports from the eastern Malaysian city of Kuantan.

Although it decreased in the past few years, the export quotas are still higher than the demand of the world market. Besides setting quotas for rare earth exports, China also takes measures to manage rare earth's exploitation, production and other activities. China complies with the rules of WTO environmental exceptions by treating domestic and foreign industries without discrimination, rather than "protects the domestic industries in a distorting way" as the western countries speculate.

In fact, it is not China that is selfish but the United States, the EU, and Japan that are aggressive. They know deeply the importance of protecting the rare earth resources and had already banned or restricted the exploitation of their own rare earth. China has done nothing more than reversing the long-standing, out-of-order mining conditions, focusing on domestic economic and environmental development, international trade balance as well as sustainable development

However, advertised as the "human rights" and "green" defenders, the United States, together with Europe and Japan, has several times pressed China "to comply with the rules of the WTO”, castigating the "unfair" trade. We cannot help but want to ask, whether the restrictions over high tech products export is a violation of free trade rules, and whether it should be punished.

It has existed for a long time that western countries deliberately abuse WTO rules for the benefit of themselves. They arm themselves with rules which are good for themselves, bypassing the rules what are bad.

Conflict, friction is not terrible. As long as we respond positively, make use of relevant rules of trade, and actively promote the perfect trade rules, China will be able to grasp more of the initiative in international trades and maintain good economic interests of the country.

Western hypocrisy in full bloom - Columnist - New Straits Times

This week, the US, European Union and Japan have brought the matter up to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and accused China of unfair trading practices.

That the Chinese are apprehensive about the move is hardly a surprise, for it marks a significant shift in the tone and tenor of its trade relations with other developed nations. That the Chinese may be somewhat annoyed by all this talk of unfair trading practices is also understandable if we were to look at how the concept of fair trade has been applied to China over the past two centuries.

In the 19th century, "free trade" meant that China was forced to open its markets to the import of opium, which led to widespread opium addiction among the population, debilitating its economy and people, and was the catalyst to the so-called "opium wars" of the 19th century.

Today, in the name of "free trade" China is being compelled to open up its economy again -- so that it may sell its rare earth to other more powerful trading nations. Which brings us to the question of politics or, specifically, the politics of free trade and the environment.


The same hypocricy is present in the attack on China over solar energy.,0,6619187.story

"If some politicians have their way, there won't be any more public investments in solar energy," Obama said of his Republican critics. "If these guys were around when Columbus set sail, they'd be charter members of the Flat Earth Society."

The WTO rules, a single set of comprehensive world-wide trade rules, require member countries commit to the fundamental obligations of non-discrimination, lowering trade barriers, non-quantitative restrictions and transparency in the administration of their trade related economic system. But the WTO rules also respect the sovereignty of member states in certain prescribed circumstances.

The WTO rules guarantee member countries a balance between their international obligations and national sovereignty by permitting the adoption or enforcement of measures in certain instances. In particular, Article XX of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade allows measures "necessary to protect human, animal or plant life or health" or "relating to the conservation of exhaustible natural resources".

This judgment erodes China's sovereign right to protect the health of its people and conserve its natural resources. A right retained by all member states when they subject themselves to WTO trade rules. The dispute settlement body denied China the right to use Article XX of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade to justify its export duties on raw materials, simply because the export duty section of China's WTO accession protocol does not explicitly mention this article.

The ruling of the dispute settlement body needs further discussion. It's obvious that the core clauses in the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade for countries' obligations regarding non-discrimination and non-quantitative restrictions don't mention Article XX either, and yet member states don't lose the rights contained in this Article.

The treatment that China has received begs the question as to why the protective umbrella the WTO gives to all the member states in Article XX does not apply to China.


Friday, March 9, 2012

Wen Given Award For US Job Creation

When Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney attacked China's trade practices recently, he probably didn't expect that the Chinese premier he met in 2003 - when Romney praised trade between the two countries - would later be granted the "Best Friend of American Worker" award.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao was given the award on Friday in Boston by the International Longshoremen's Association in appreciation of China's strong support of job growth for US workers.

Romney, who was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007, accompanied Wen on a visit to the Port of Boston at the end of 2003, and said that trade with China brought practical interests to the state he served.

ILA Vice-President William McNamara said that his association was honored to give Wen the award and thanked China for its great contributions in creating more job opportunities for US workers.

The award ceremony coincided with the 10th anniversary of the first direct vessel call to the Port of Boston by the China Ocean Shipping (Group) Company in February 2002.

Chinese Ambassador to the US Zhang Yesui received the award on behalf of the Chinese premier, and said that it represents a unique recognition of Wen's support of the COSCO-Massport (the Massachusetts Port Authority of the US) partnership, which reflects the win-win nature of China-US business relations.

"I think today's event is a good example of how the US and China are cooperating in a full range of areas, and how Chinese business and trade can contribute to American jobs and communities in the six states of the New England region of the US, particularly in the city of Boston," he said.

Amid stubbornly high unemployment and a persistent economic recession, the GOP presidential candidates have often assailed China's intellectual property and currency policies as they seek to convince voters they can create jobs and turn the economy around.

Romney said China's currency manipulation has cost "millions of jobs" in the US, and if elected president, he would immediately label China as a currency manipulator.

However, US government statistics showed that it only added about 60,000 jobs in September, not enough to change the August unemployment rate of 9.1 percent, while rising Chinese labor costs could contribute 3 million jobs in the US by 2020, Financial Times quoted a study conducted by the Boston Consulting Group released in October.

More and more jobs are being generated by rising US exports to China, as the increasing cost of labor in China undermines the advantages of its exported goods, said Wang Zihong, director of the Economics Office of the Institute of American Studies with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

According to the US-China Business Council, US exports to China rose from $16.2 billion to $91.9 billion from 2000 to 2010, up 468 percent.

Exports to China are a vital part of the US economic growth recovery - and of sustained economic health. China is the third-largest US export market, and it continues to expand rapidly, said a statement released by the council in 2011.

There is still great potential for China's direct investment in the US, which brings more jobs, said Wang, adding that Chinese enterprises need to become more involved in the US market.

"None of the big economies are perfect, and neither are the Chinese and the US, but China is improving its market economy and intellectual rights to make the bilateral economic cooperation more mutually beneficial," he said.

Updated: 2012-03-06 07:06By Zhao Shengnan (China Daily)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Zhung Tse Tong and The Shanghai Communique

The Shanghai Communique, issued 40 years ago, was the official public announcement of US China relations. However, there were several events that paved the way for this historic change in US foreign policy. Ping Pong Diplomacy enthralls all.

In Beijing, after a careful study of the reports from Nagoya, the Foreign Ministry held that in inviting Americans to China, first consideration should be given to influential journalists and politicians. In a report written jointly by the Foreign Ministry and the State Commission for Physical Culture and Sports on April 4, it was suggested that the Chinese table tennis delegation in Nagoya tell the American team that the time was not yet ripe for it to visit China. The report was sent to Zhou and Mao.

By then the Chinese and American table tennis players had come into contact on more than one occasion and exchanged souvenirs, which had made a sensation in the world press. The American players had expressed their wish to visit China.

Mao was well informed of what had happened in Nagoya. He decided to invite the American players immediately. On April 7, the Chinese delegation received a directive from home: "considering that the American team has made the request many times with friendly enthusiasm, it has been approved to invite it, including its leaders, to visit our country."

Upon receiving the invitation, Steenhoven immediately reported to the American ambassador to Japan. After reading the cable from Tokyo, Nixon decided at once that the American team should go to China, taking the invitation for the beginning of a long-awaited major diplomatic action.

On April 14, Zhou received the guest teams from the United States, Canada, Colombia and Nigeria at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. When talking with the American players, he said, "The Chinese and American people used to have frequent exchanges. Then came a long period of severance. Your visit has opened the door to friendship between the peoples of the two countries."

Richard Nixon's visit to China in February 1972 changed the course of history — reshaping the global balance of power and opening the door to the establishment of relations between the People's Republic and the United States.
1972年2月理查德•尼克松对中国的访问改变了历史的轨迹 - 它重新调整了全球势力的均衡,为中华人民共和国和美国两国间关系的建立打开了大门。

It was also a milestone in the history of journalism. Since the Communist revolution of 1949, a suspicious regime in Beijing had barred virtually all U.S. reporters from China. For the Nixon trip, however, the Chinese agreed to accept nearly 100 journalists, and to allow the most dramatic events — Nixon's arrival in Beijing, Zhou Enlai'swelcoming banquet, visits to the Great Wall and the Forbidden City — to be televised live.
这次访问同时也是新闻史上的一个里程碑。自1949年共产革命以来,对外界充满怀疑的北京政府将所有美国新闻记者拒之门外。然而为了尼克松中国之行,中方同意并接纳了10­0名新闻记者,并且允许电视现场直播尼克松中国之行中发生的重大事件 - 例如尼克松抵京,周恩来总理欢迎晚宴,总统参观长城和故宫。

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The coverage was arguably as important as the details of the diplomacy. It profoundly transformed American and international perceptions of a long-isolated China, generated the public support Nixon needed to change U.S. policy, and laid the groundwork for Beijing's gradual move to open China to greater international media coverage.

While the outlines of the Nixon trip are familiar, the behind-the-scenes story of how that momentous event was covered is much less well-known. This segment of Assignment: China focuses on journalists who went with Nixon and includes interviews with those officials who sought to shape the coverage. The Week that Changed the World contains previously unreleased footage of the Nixon visit, as well as interviews with journalistic luminaries such as Dan Rather and Bernard Kalb of CBS, Ted Koppel and Tom Jarriel of ABC, Barbara Walters of NBC, Max Frankel of the New York Times, Stanley Karnow of the Washington Post, and many others.

Reported and narrated by U.S.-China Institute Senior Fellow Mike Chinoy, formerly CNN's Senior Asia Correspondent and Beijing Bureau Chief, and edited by USCI Multimedia Editor Craig Stubing, the film offers a fascinating and previously untold perspective on one of the most important historical moments of the 20th century. Clayton Dube conceived of the Assignment: China project and supervises it.

Friendship First, Competition Second


Sunday, February 12, 2012

Chinese VP Xi Jinping

VP Xi is believed to become China's next leader. He will visit the US Feb 13-16, visiting Washington DC, Iowa and LA, before he heads to Ireland and Turkey.

This is a sensitive time in the US, The Republican candidates are staging debates as they vie for the nomination to run for president against Obama. Already China has become a favorite scapegoat for US economic troubles. One US senator was forced to remove racist adverizing and rhetoric from both Republicans and Democrats could not be worse as they demonstrate how they will get tough with China.

On the other hand, China has navigated the world wide economic crisis quite well. China's focus is on trade, and several US states have benifited from trade with China.

Here is a brief view of China's next president from Aljeerza

The Washington Post, in advance of Xi's visit to the US, posed several questions to discover his views...

Unfortunately, the WP wants you to pay to read. However, the last question was on sports: Xi's response...


"I like sports, and swimming is my favorite. Doing physical exercises keeps one fit and healthy and helps one work more efficiently. I think we all need to strike a balance between work and relaxation. This can keep us energetic and help us do our job better.

NBA games are exciting to watch and have global appeal. They are very popular in China. I do watch NBA games on television when I have time."

I believe that Xi's visit comes at an auspicious time, with another American stereotype destroyed by Jeremy Lin, the undrafted sensation who has just set an NBA all time record. Folks are asking, where did he come from, but you see, he was hidden in plain sight by our latent racism, because he 'didn't look like a basketball player.'

There is nothing like exposing America's racism right before the Chinese VP's visit!

Nearly two weeks in, Linsanity is raging for anyone who takes even a passing interest in the game, or identifies as one of the billions of Asians around the globe, or who simply relishes an unlikely hero. And yes, Jeremy Lin's breakout success is a moment of cultural pride for Asian Americans similar to what we've felt in the past with luminaries from Michelle Kwan to Maxine Hong Kingston.

But it also feels very different.

Because what's most undeniable about Lin -- what screamed to anyone who saw his game-winning, buzzer-beating three-pointer Tuesday night -- is that the guy has balls.

Which obviously has always been true of other Asian males. But now Lin is demonstrating it in a way that even the most racist douchebag would be hard-pressed to refute.

And the effect is only magnified by his relatively low-key yet evident swagger, his self-aware nerdy cool, his substantial yet unfreakish build, the fact that on TV he pretty much looks and sounds like your brother or your cousin or a kid who rode the same bus in high school. Amid all the hoopla, he's utterly unafraid to be himself -- which, in the end, is the only form of masculinity a mother truly wants for her son.

So, folks, what does a basket ball player look like?

And here is a so called 'Good Read' from the Christian Science Monitor...

Americans expect exceptionalism – remember Tom Brokaw’s Greatest Generation – and they expect their leaders to take up where the Roosevelts, Eisenhowers, and Reagans left off.

But a slew of well-argued pieces this week show that these expectations are maybe misplaced.

In Foreign Policy, Daniel Blumenthal – an expert on China at the American Enterprise Institute – says that it’s naïve to think that either tough talk or sweet talk are going to win over Xi and set China on a different path. The truth is that the China that Xi would eventually govern is much more pluralistic and complex than the China that Henry Kissinger and Richard Nixon negotiated with during the cold war, or as politically weak as the Soviet Union that Mr. Gorbachev so helpfully dismantled.
Wonderful photos of Xi's never ending smile. How can he be so relaxed after hours of trans Pacific and trans America flight and hours of meetings with officials?

Xi Jinping is married to Peng Liyuan, famous folk singer.

I would like to share my observation that Xi Jinping and Jeremy Lin have a lot in common, they both seemingly came out of nowhere, when denied opportunity as a kid, they double down, and work their tails off, until they realize their dreams, then they dedicate their efforts to the 'team.'

Xi's visit continues with what VOA terms a major policy speech. While China and the rest of the world are reporting on his visit, there appears to be a news fail here in the US, with MSM brushing him off as saying nothing new.

Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping says China welcomes the U.S. playing a "positive role" in the Asia-Pacific region. But, he said, the world's two largest economies should respect each other's "core interests and major concerns."

In what has been billed as the major policy speech of his four-day visit, Xi addressed a luncheon in Washington co-hosted by the U.S.-China Business Council and the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

A number of China's most prominent corporate leaders are accompanying Xi on his trip.

This folks, is the way to win. Let's not underestimate Xi Jinping.