February 09, 2007

Chinese Resisting Starbucks

A web blog post by Rui Chenggang, an English news anchor with China’s CCTV-9, titled “Why Starbucks Needs to Get Out of the Forbidden City?”, has stirred heated debates among Chinese netizens and been picked up by China’s local and national media. According to the Beijing News , Rui believes that having a Starbucks within the Forbidden City makes a mockery of Chinese traditional culture because an icon of a foreign mass-consumption fast food culture is discordant with a sacred symbol of Chinese civilization. Covering over 7 million square feet and housing 1.5 million relics, treasures and artifacts spanning five thousand years of Chinese history, the nearly 600-year-old former Chinese imperial palace (now known as the Palace Museum) is China’s most comprehensive historical museum. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. The Starbucks outlet is located close to the Hall of Military Eminence, where imperial military officials gathered as the Emperor held court. Perhaps that’s what makes it the company’s only store that is un-mappable. The same newspaper article quotes Rui publicly confronting Jim Donald, Starbucks Chairman and CEO, at the 2006 Yale CEO Leadership Summit. “I wonder if you have plans to open stores in Taj Mahal, Versailles or Buckingham Palace,” Rui said. “But, first, please remove your outlet from the Forbidden City.”

Donald responded to Rui’s letters of protest, writing that Starbucks has shown “great sensitivity to, and respect for the heritage of the Forbidden City since it was invited to open a store there by museum officials six years ago.” Eden Woon, Starbuck’s Vice President for Greater China, tells the Beijing News, “As our contract with the museum has not expired, we have no plan to move out. Rui Chenggang’s proposal is only his personal opinion.”

Museum officials, though defensive, have taken note of the controversy. They tell the Beijing Morning Post that negotiations are underway between the museum and Starbucks, and expect the dispute to be resolved within the first half of this year. Amid the strong support of Rui’s stand on preserving national cultural integrity in the age of global integration, increasing questions are being raised about the management of China’s increasingly market-driven cultural institutions.

An article from China Daily reports that pressed by local dignitaries in 2003, a KFC outlet bid farewell to Beihai Park, an imperial garden in Beijing, after the expiration of a ten-year contract. Rui told the Beijing News that he hopes Starbucks will do the same. If Starbucks voluntarily moves out of the Forbidden City, he wrote in his blog, it will gain the heart-felt respect of the Chinese people who deeply love their traditional culture. He also notes that his personal protest is not a one-off occurrence. He believes that at present the West frequently misreads China, mostly due to the silence of the Chinese people. He says that he voices his opinion this time in order to help eliminate those misunderstandings, and will continue to do so in the future.

See related photo slideshow for this story.

Posted 04:40 PM | Comments (0)

April 05, 2006

People Daily: we should be aware of Americans' victim-like psychology

The way Chinese people view Americans has been continuously changing and reached a stage that they feel Americans are lagging behind in a game with rules set by the Americans, People Daily run a comment today, before Chinese President Hu's visit to U.S. later this month.

People Daily is the mouthpiece of Chinese Communist Party and regarded as one of the most authorized media in China expressing the government's policy and point of view.

The piece is written by an economic researcher in the U.S. Research branch of Chinese Academy of Social Science. Wang, the writer, raised three reasons for Americans' victim-like psychology to explain the current tight Sino-US relationship and suggested a "new" thinking for China to deal with U.S. in trade issues as preparing for a long time friendly relationship.

"Americans always try to express a strong feeling that they are the miserable victim in the trade between U.S. and China." Wang said.

Most people in China don't know much about the American polictics and debate in Senate and political lobbying, just as Americans are not familiar with Chinese ways of doing things. Chinese will feel surprised seeing leaders being challenged in U.S. political debate being broadcasted, just as Americans will be amazed by China's efficiency with those idle listeners in a meeting when leaders are speaking in boring official tones.

Wang said if one went to sit in a debate of U.S. congress, he/she will sure feel the consent of how U.S. has suffered, after hearinga the emotional speech by senators. "These senators and representatives who are demanding votes to continue their career, just cannot accept that U.S. has fell behind China in a trade game in which the rules were set by the America." So they require to use the rules to curb China.

"Americans think China are just lucky enough to grow in an age of globalisation." Wang concluded, cited this as the first reason for American's victim-like psychology.

Secondly, Americans felt that China and Chinese goods and Chinese workers will squeeze away the position U.S. and her citizens have taken and end their living. "Although many experts and academics have repeated saying China's producing advantage mostly rely on her cheap labour and China just functions as assembly for global brands led by U.S. and western countries, Americans still feared China's growth in technology." Wang said.

Globalization is also a key issue. Wall Street Journal recently published an article talking about the new merger and acquisition trend in business that related to cross-border buyout of companies, citing Dubai's port deal and China's CNOOC's attempt to buy Unicol as typical examples, supported by recent resistence to cross-border merger in European Union.

The debut of Ben Bernanke as chairman of Federal Reserve also has relate to the inverted curve phenomenon, as U.S. short-term notes' yield are higher than those of long-terms, to globalisation, as China and Japan are buying a huge amount of US treasuries, which is not as significant in earlier days. Bernakee thus ruled out an economic recession.

Globalisation is kicking Amricans' nurve when it's not Americanization. Wang said the third reason for American's victim-like psychology is American has put all their anxiety about globalisation on China. "U.S. used to be the promoter of globalisation." Wang said, "globalisation means adjusting to new culture and new ways of life. In the early days, American adjust happily as they are benefited from globalisation with their income increased and other things bettered. However, when the harms come near to them in their turn, Americans felt the pain felt by people in other places around the world in the early days and are eager to find someone to blame. China fell into the slot."

"US is the biggest trade parter of our country," Wang concluded at the end of the article, "We should do our best to keep the relationship, and keep it stable."

"Americans' viticm-like feeling is strong and we should be aware of that when dealing with them in the future." Wang said, "We should prepare for it as it will take the U.S. a long time for them to adjust and changing the victim-like feelings."

Posted 09:50 PM | Comments (1)

February 24, 2006

China: awareness of IPR for competition with India

In a recent interview by a Chinese newspaper Economic Oberver, James Gradoville, the vice chairman of The American Chamber of Commerce in PRC, talked about the Intellectual Property Right in China, which he said has brought damages to many memebers of the Chamber. James said Chinese government should play an active role to resolve this problem.

Not long after that, on Feb. 23, China Vice Premier Wu Yi "vowed to intensify her fight against illegally copied goods -- not to fend off complaints from Washington but to spur her own country's ambitions to become a technological power," according to a report by Reuters.

Reuters also said a report issued this month by the United States Trade Representative Rob Portman that promised concerted action."IPR protection is one of China's greatest shortcomings," said the report. "The volume of counterfeit goods from China seized at the U.S. border continues to rise."

This IPR issue, among many others related to China's crippled legal system, has become a critical issue for American companies doing business in China, esp. at a time when India boasts its more completed and westernized legal framework to attract FDI (Foreign Direct Investment).

According to a Financial Times report on Feb. 22, India could achieve sustained economic growth rates of up to 10 per cent – at which it would keep step with China – if the government quickened the pace of reform, as predicted by the International Monetary Fund in Feb.21 released a report.

Posted 08:03 PM | Comments (0)

November 05, 2005

US-Japan Alliance: Cold War again?

In response to the report entitled "US-Japan alliance: For future reforms and regrouping" published at the end of last month, People's Daily, the most influential and authoritative Chinese newspaper, Saturday put the review "US-Japan military alliance reflects Cold War mentality" written by Jiang Xinfeng who is a research fellow with the Chinese Academy of Military Sciences and World Military Research Institute.

Jiang elevated sense of vigilance against accelerating Japan-US military integration and called it "full of Cold War mentality".

On October 29, Japan-US "2+2" Security Consultation Committee held a meeting in Washington, which reached an agreement on the adjustment of US troops stationed in Japan and the share of duties between Japan's Self-Defense Forces and US troops, and published the report entitled "US-Japan alliance: For future reforms and regrouping". Intensified Japan-US military alliance is manifested mainly in the following aspects:
First, accelerating Japan-US military integration, enhancing joint combat capability. The report points out that the headquarters of US troops stationed in Japan will set up a Japan-US joint combat command post at the Yokota Airport, move the US ground force first headquarters on the land of America to the Camp Zama and set up there a central quick reaction group headquarters of Japan's land Self-Defense Forces, move the aviation Self-Defense Forces headquarters located in Foochow to the Yokota Airport where the Fifth Air Force headquarters of the US army is located. This is aimed to establish a Japan-US emergency mechanism, strengthen coordinated command between Japanese and US headquarters, realize share of information and enhance ballistic missile defense capability, thereby speeding up the process of Japan-US military integration and improving Japan-US commanding and combating abilities. Military integration is also manifested in the shared use of US troops' facilities in Japan by the two countries. US troops in Japan and Japanese Self-Defense Forces can use civil airports and docks and harbors under emergency situations.

Second, ensuring the containing power of US troops in Japan when they tend to become more capable and flexible. The agreement focuses on adjusting US troops stationed in Okinawa. The Futenma Airport of US forces in Japan will be moved to Camp Schwab, at the same time, US 7,000-member marine corps in Okinawa will be reduced, the majority of which will be shifted to Guam. On the one hand, this can help lighten the burden on the Okinawa Base; on the other hand, it can make US Marine Corps cope with various situations more flexibly. In addition, although US Land Force First Headquarters to be shifted to Camp Zama does not have subordinated army units, once warfare breaks out in the area from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean under its jurisdiction, the headquarters can instantly dispatch crack troops from the US proper and other places to plunge into battles. Despite reduction in the number of US troops in Japan, due to strengthened commanding and controlling functions of US forces in Japan, the containing power of US troops has become stronger.

Third, the substantial upgrading of Japanese military role has made Japan the frontline of US Asian strategy. The report points out that Japan and the United States will strengthen cooperation in a dozen or so fields such as antiaircraft, ballistic missile defense, anti-proliferation and counter-terrorism, the two sides confirm the need to formulate a joint combat plan for dealing with contingencies and stress that Japan will give US troops "unceasing support". The United States regards Japan as a strong point for realizing its Asian strategy, and Japan, on its part, takes advantage of the opportunity to upgrade its military position and role, so as to take more and deeper participation in regional and global security affairs and raise its status in the international community, and thus accumulate capital for realizing its goal of becoming a political power.

Fourth, its intention to contain China and some other countries has become conspicuous. Japan and the United States have clearly regarded the Taiwan Straits and the Korean Peninsula as their common strategic goals in the Asian region. The present adjustment to US troops in Japan and various military cooperation measures of the two countries mainly aim to cope with armed conflicts possibly occur in the Taiwan Straits and the Korean Peninsula in the future, their intention to contain China is obvious.

Amidst the theme of the UN initiation for the establishment of a harmonious world, the act of the United States and Japan in presenting the new military cooperation agreement which is full of Cold War mentality entirely goes against the trend of the times featuring peace and development. It has not only met with severe criticisms from farsighted personages of Japan, but also has aroused the high vigilance of the surrounding countries. That Japan ties itself to the war chariot of the United States will not make itself more secure, but instead will harm its long-term national interests.

The author Jiang Xinfeng is research fellow with the Chinese Academy of Military Sciences and World Military Research Institute; Translated by People's Daily Online

Posted 12:32 PM | Comments (0)

Tokyo Governor Ishihara Bashes US

Some of Japanese media reported at a Washington press conference on Thursday, Tokyo's right-wing governor, Shintaro Ishihara said that if the US and China get into a war, then "there is no chance of the United States defeating China in a war. Washington should take measures to contain China economically."

"A war is an attrition of lives," the anti-US novelist-turned politician said, "the US is making a fuss over 2,000 victims of the Iraq war. But since the Chinese do not value life, they would not care if they lose millions of soldiers, unlike the US."

He said that China has successfully tested ICBM missiles and brought nuclear submarines into Japanese territorial waters, therefore "the world situation is more dangerous than it ever was during the U.S.-Soviet Cold War".

Posted 10:16 AM | Comments (0)

October 25, 2005

New Kid on the Rig

The immediate after effects of Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and (now) Wilma have been under consideration in the past few months, but their collective effect on the developing world has received considerably less coverage.

One such residual issue has been the price of petroleum in Latin America, which, in the case of Nicaragua, has undergone one of the most precipitous hikes in national history.

In a story in 7 Días, the author notes that hurricane season initialed a phase of "irrational consumption" of strategic reserves on the part of the U.S. This, in turn, has forced reductions in petroleum exportation in the western hemisphere as a whole.

The article notes that the impact of refineries should be minimized in due time, and that the $65 oil barrels and a 20% increase in domestic energy prices should also go the way of the dinosaur (lest Nicaragua truly suffer). The most interesting facet of this article, however, is the notion that China's staggering growth rate and increasing petroleum consumption has had one of the most adverse effects on the energy needs of the developing world.

Will China soon bear the label of an imperial power with its rapacious appetite for resources and markets? And what will be the role of American interests in this new model?

Posted 01:38 AM | Comments (0)

October 19, 2005

Yasukuni's impact on the US

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visit to Yasukuni Shrine became an explosive issue at home and abroad.

Tuesday'd New York Times editorial "Pointless Provocation in Tokyo" sharply criticized Koizumi's visit to Yasukuni.

No one realistically worries about today's Japan re-embarking on the road of imperial conquest. But Japan, Asia's richest, most economically powerful and technologically advanced nation, is shedding some of the military and foreign policy restraints it has observed for the past 60 years.

This is exactly the wrong time to be stirring up nightmare memories among the neighbors. Such provocations seem particularly gratuitous in an era that has seen an economically booming China become Japan's most critical economic partner and its biggest geopolitical challenge.

Japanese leading newspaper Asahi Shimbun analyzed that NY Times editorial represented the US national interests in the East Asia.

No approval was shown by Bush administration or even by pro-Japanese group in the US.
Asahi said deterioration of Japan-China and Japan-Korea relations will destabilize the current six-nation framework including North Korea and the US, and will spoil the regional security in East Asia and US national interests there.

Posted 10:35 AM | Comments (0)

October 18, 2005

The Red Scare, Yellow Peril Style

China's meteoric economic growth figures, combined with it's similarly metereoic ascent into space and sky-high defense budget, has provoked considerable anxiety in the United States. Donald Rumsfeld has called China a threat to Asain peace and stability, citing it's increased military expenditures and claims over Taiwan and assorted island chains. The sabre-rattling has begun to infiltrate the elite media as well - in what must count as one of the most provocative instances of alarmisms since the end of the Cold War, the Atlantic ran the following cover to an article on China's rise by Robert Kaplan:


The article itself, "The Next Cold War - How We Would Fight China," was no less inflamatory. Taking conflict almost as a given, Kaplan discusses Chinese tactics in loaded terms:

China has committed itself to significant military spending, but its navy and air force will not be able to match ours for some decades. The Chinese are therefore not going to do us the favor of engaging in conventional air and naval battles, like those fought in the Pacific during World War II. The Battle of the Philippine Sea, in late June of 1944, and the Battle of Leyte Gulf and the Surigao Strait, in October of 1944, were the last great sea battles in American history, and are very likely to remain so. Instead the Chinese will approach us asymmetrically, as terrorists do. In Iraq the insurgents have shown us the low end of asymmetry, with car bombs. But the Chinese are poised to show us the high end of the art. That is the threat.

His suggestions? Rebuild the NATO alliance to counter China, and build a similar coalition in Asia to encirlce and contain the rising power. And it has found some willing partners - both Japan and India have recently deepened security cooperation with the US.

The response from Chinese sources has been predictable - official media outlets argue the harmlessness of China's growth and try to counter American claims. What is more suprising is that this has been picked up by other media, including in Canada, traditionally one of America's closest allies. In an extensive piece in the Walrus (Canada's most seriously intellecual newsmagazine), Gwynne Dyer argues that is the American strategy of containment, and not China's rise, that threatens regional peace and stability. In his piece, there is no ambiguity about what is at stake, and who is to blame:

If there's anyone left to write the history of how the Third World War happened, they might well focus on June 28, 2005, as the date when the slide into global disaster became irreversible. That was the day when India's defense minister, Pranab Mukherjee, and US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld signed a ten-year agreement in Washington on military co-operation, joint weapons production, and missile defense - not quite a formal US-Indian alliance, but close enough to one that China finally realized it was the target of a deliberate American strategy to encircle and 'contain' it.'

It's not clear yet what China plans to do about it, but since June the rhetoric out of Beijing has been unprecedentedly harsh. In mid-July, for example, Major General Zhu Chenghu warned in an official briefing that China is under pressure to drop its policy of 'no first strike' of nuclear weapons in the event of a military conflict with the US over Taiwan. 'We have no capability to fight a conventional war against the United States,' he said. 'We can't win this kind of war.' And so China would deliberately escalate to nuclear weapons: 'We Chinese will prepare ourselves for the destruction of all the cities east of Xian. Of course the Americans will have to be prepared that hundreds of [their] cities will be destroyed by the Chinese.

Posted 12:08 AM | Comments (0)

October 17, 2005

Tai Shi, a small village, big trial for democracy

Tai Shi, a small village not far from my home in Guangzhou, is the capitial city of Guangdong Province, one of the most developed provinces in southern China. What happened there in recent months is a struggle, by the Chinese people and the Central government leaders, also of the corrupted officials dominating that village.

Things became drastic since last week when a Chinese Legistator Lu Bang LIe and an reporter of the Guardian Benjamin Joffe-Walt who were trying to enter the village, was beaten, and then Joffe-Watt wrote an article just before the deadline on Sunday. This is the link to the original report of his.

Later, the Guardian reporter found out Lu Bang LIe, the legislator, also a pro-democracy activist was not dead, so the editor of the Guardian made an annoucement and correct a few flaws in the original report. This is the link.

If you want to know more about the whole Tai Shi incident, in which villagers were following suggestions of lawyers and legislators (deputies of People's Congress, which is a legilative institution of China according to the Constitution of People's Republic of China), trying to get a corrupted chief of the village out ot office, you can go to this webpage http://www.zonaeuropa.com/20050919_1.htm, where you will find what was going on before a western journalist was beaten up.

This article comment on the Joffe-Walt beaten incident, based on the author's own experience as a western journalist covering mainland China.

Posted 08:24 PM | Comments (1)

October 14, 2005

Freedom of Press in China

By Nie Zheng (Nevin)

Press freedom in China is undergoing gradual improvements instead of an overnight change, said two mainland visiting scholars in their lecture to journalism students in the University of Hong Kong.

Jin Li-ping, a seasoned reporter and now editor-in-chief of China Newsweek, said she did not believe China could have freed of press overnight. “Freedom of press should happen together with political, economical and legal reforms.” Jin said. Press freedom is one element of total reform of the country. “China doesn’t need a free press for one day only, it needs to last forever.”

Sun Xu-pei, another speaker, said he favored moving toward freedom of press in a “step by step” way, instead of following former Soviet Union’s model. Sun is a professor at Huazhong University of Science and Technology and a researcher at the News and Broadcast Research Center of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Last year, Sun published two books about media reform in China. Before the publishing of one book, top officials criticized it. After published, the book was banned for a few months. Sun said he had told officials not to be afraid of reform and they just need the guts to go ahead.

“Provincial-level officials, in their official capacity, can’t speak about what they really think,” he said, “Unofficially many support what I promote.” Sun admitted it was more difficult for him to find a way to speak out the truth than to find out the truth.

If she had more reporting freedom, Jin Li-ping admitted, her magazine would report almost the same topics as what she had already been covering, only in a more professional way. “Our magazine is a new media in China,” she said. “When we choose topics, we don’t consult the government beforehand but we will not pick the topics that have been specifically banned by the government.” Officials would use administrative power rather than the law to press journalists.

In such a gradual improving press environment in China, she said, Chinese reporters need to be persistent and persevering. They need interpersonal skills and tools to be able to find the best possible truth. “Sometimes the truth can’t be found because of the difficulties that can’t be overcome and sometimes it’s because the truth just cannot get out.” She said.

Once head of Institute of Journalism of Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, Sun said, he found out it was difficult to be a researcher in Journalism and media law too. He has written many things promoting press freedom under different names. Later when a collection of his works was printed under his true name, he was demoted.

“The freedom to report on Central level officials could lead to real chaos in China,” Sun said. But there should be more freedom at provincial levels. He said he believed that a one party system is not compatible with freedom of press. If China has freedom of press, it needs a multi-party system to work with it, which would take a long time to develop.

Posted 07:54 PM | Comments (0)

October 12, 2005

His life as a "KILLER", immigrant worker Chen Hao from China

Chinese Business News
by Tian Yi, Ji Tan

Chen Hao was staring at the 14-inches PC screen. In this game called "World of Warcraft", he scavenged with a long sword in his hand, moving swiftly among brown and desert hills, hunting at those giant monsters. He was only 17 years old.

Suddenly, a monster appeared right behind a small hill, brandishing a pair of big hammers in its hands, fiercely moving toward Chen Hao to attack him. Chen Hao took the advantage of the monster when it brandished the hammers up, and hit its waist before four continuous strikes. The monster was killed, fell down to the ground shaken by its weight.

It's 11 o'clock at night, Aug 17, 2005. Chen Hao had been facing the screen killing the monsters and getting golden coins for almost 6 hours. There were two immigrant workers from rural areas per computer. Everyone take turns to work 12 hours a day in two teams with more than 100 people in each team. It's a workshop for golden coins, in the world of warcraft.

When Chen Hao was busy killing monsters, his collegues in the other team were sleeping on the ground scattered everywhere. Their homes were some rurual areas outside here. But they worked, ate, and lived here, in this virtual world.

This is a small town one hour car drive from Li Shui downtown area in Ze Jiang Province. The pc game workshop locates in the former house of supply and selling commune, which is as large as 200 square meters. The golden coins Chen Hao and his colleagus got in the online game were sold to the Americans on the other side of the pacific, who pay dollars and are eager to use those golden coins to upgrade the player's level.

"World of Warcraft" is an online virtual world for 4 million game players all over the world. However, Chen Hao, these immigrant workers did not play it for fun. It's just their job.

The weather of August here was terribly hot. 24 hours online computers were giving out heat in the room, where on air conditioning was not available. Scores of big electronic fans were stirring the air with terribly big sounds, mixing the smell of sweat and instant noodles. Rythm of "tow butterflies" was floating up through the air. Ashtrys, bowls, cell phones, bottles, scraps of paper and clothes were scattered on the table. People here chose the casual way, either sitting or crouching, with red eyes and yawns. Most of them already fell asleep.

The American players call them "farming gold".

Chen Hao's father sincerely hoped his son can come with him back to the rural hometown to be a peasant, after Chen failed highschool. However, Chen refused to continue after a few months at home. His father asked what he wanted to do. Play PC games, he said, and got a slap on his face by his father. Chen is a handsome young man, doesn't feel like talking. Now he goes home once every week All the time left is for killing monsters or sleeping on the ground.

"I can kill monsters and get at least 250 golden coins per day," he said, "This happened when I was lucky. Most of the time, I was killed by the monster. Once you killed a monster, you can trade its belongings into golden or silver coins. 100 silver coins equals one single golden coin." Chen Hao declared to the reporter. "As long as you are online, you can earn coins without stop."

However, inside the heart of Chen Hao, he really envy those players in the United States, who play the games simply for fun. "When we were really tired and fed up with killing monsters and getting coins, we would also play for fun for a short while, adventuring to some funny place in the game" Chen Hao said. "But after you worked 12 hours, you really simply want to sleep."

Posted 05:51 PM | Comments (1)

October 05, 2005

Japanese poll shows anti-Chinese feeling running strong among Japanese

One of Japanese leading newspapers, Mainichi Shimbun's poll published on Thursday shows only 31 percent of 2,418 Japanese feel an affinity for China while 65 percent of those have favorable impression of the US.
It reveals the cooling public sentiment among Japanese against China and the tension between these two countries that is often called politically cold but economically hot.
The article concluded "when it came to China, the impact of anti-Japanese riots on the Asian mainland in April seems to have had an adverse effect on the way Japanese view Chinese."

People who answered that they feel intimacy with China fairy well 4%
partly 27%
not very much50%
not at all18%
People who answered that they feel intimacy with the US fairy well 14%
not very much28%
not at all5%

Posted 11:08 PM | Comments (0)

September 26, 2005

Sino-US ties to progress well if handled with care

By Elena Favilli

From People's daily online (official newspaper of the Communist party of China):

"China's attitude towards the United States is an important part of its foreign policy. The basic tenets of this policy are: On the basis of the three joint communiques, China will strengthen co-operation, reduce differences, avoid confrontation, develop a constructive co-operative partnership between the two countries, and ensure long-term stability and development in bilateral relations.

This policy is founded on a very deep understanding of the Sino-US relationship.

First, the United States is the only superpower with the greatest national strength in the world. This state of affairs is not going to change for a long time. China, in its effort to strive for an environment that is conducive to its peaceful development, regards the cultivation of a positive co-operative relationship with the United States as most important.

Second, there are a vast number of common interests and a high level of effective co-operation in the areas of commerce, trade and security - including regional security, and non-traditional security areas such as prevention of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and counter-terrorism.

However, the two countries have different social systems and ideologies, and both must handle the relationship with each other well if they want to develop their mutual interests and resolve such matters as human rights.

Third, in recent years, the Sino-American relationship has evolved to one between a superpower and a major rising power. Improvement or deterioration of this relationship is increasingly influencing regional and international arenas. China is worried that the United States, in order to sustain its dominant position, is bent on obstructing China's development. This has helped heighten the importance, complexity and sensitivity of the relationship between the two countries. "

Continue reading the article.

Posted 09:35 PM | Comments (0)

September 23, 2005

China moves to improve the society

"Stability"is always the major concern of Chinese government when facing all kinds of diffucult situations and decisions must be made promptly and effectively. It is indeed very important for the society to keep stable in order to continue its development and improvent of people's living standard . However, after the open and reform policies first advocated by Deng Xiaoping more 20 years ago and being treated as the general direction of the policies since first advocated, the society is moving into a new status that require some altered method to continue, otherwise the situation may turn severe.

What the governments in China feel extremly hard to deal with is that Chinese society has been cut to several pieces with huge differences between each other in terms of consumption, production, education and living standard. In the same land that you call China, you can find very rich people who can afford the most luxury jewelry in the world, and a large amount of young men in or from rural areas who can't even have enough money to live on or support their family, and lot of people like me form the city who owns a laptop and have fairly good education and can speak fluent English.

The situation is CHANGING, in a way to a better status, while in another way into a worse situation. Corruption is the biggest problem that are shaking the ground of the Party, the legal system, the widening wealth gap. BUT through studying history, I know many developed countries, European countries or US all have a period of time when corruption was terribly damaging the country and the society, and then suddenly all the problems were solved after another period of time due to the overall development of the country.

If we explore the reasons for the wealth gap, "Study Times", a publication backed by the Communist Party School, quoted a famous economist in China, Wu JInglian, who always tell the truth about current economic policies in China, criticising the bad effect and call for care to the poor, saying that many of the new rich had benefited from "money and power" deals between officials and entreprenurs.

"All of the core problems are caused by unequal opportuinty," he said. "Unequal opportunity does not only lead to unfair incomes, but also damages justice and economic effiency."

South China Morning Post, an English newspaper based on Hong Kong has run several articles in recent days discussing the unstabilities warned by Wu Jinliang (Also by many ohter scholars and officals in China) and the possibilities of solving the problems through a gradual process towards democracy, which may first and some are already experimented in lower local governments in China. The website of the South China Morning Post is www.scmp.com, it's very good newspaper with serious journalism. BUT it's not free to read articles on its website.

If you want to know more about the democracy thing in China, there is an article on Asia Times Online, http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/GI20Ad01.html. I don't quite agree with the author, but the article is quite worth reading.

Posted 09:04 AM | Comments (0)

June 24, 2005

Mixed reaction to CNOOC bid

From China Daily

BEIJING, June 24 -- The US$18.5 billion bid by China National Offshore Oil Company Limited (CNOOC Ltd), China's No 3 oil producer, for Unocal drew mixed reactions from investors and credit-rating firms yesterday.

Shares of CNOOC inched up by 1.2 per cent to HK$4.20 (53 US cents) in the Hong Kong stock market yesterday, as analysts said the long-awaited offer was better than expected.

But in London, credit-rating firm Moody's placed the company's A2 issuer rating on review yesterday for possible downgrade. Moody's officials said they were concerned about the huge debt CNOOC would incur to finance the merger.

"In addition, the review for downgrade reflects the considerable integration challenges that CNOOC Ltd is expected to face in bedding down such a large acquisition, given its lack of track record in this area," Moody's said in a report.

CNOOC's competitor for Unocal, the ninth-largest oil firm in the United States, is Chevron, the second-largest petroleum company in the United States.

The price of CNOOC shares in Hong Kong tumbled earlier this month when the company announced it would counter Chevron's bid, made in April. Investors had believed that CNOOC's offer price was too high and that Unocal, the same size as CNOOC, is too big to swallow.

Yesterday CNOOC offered US$67 in cash per Unocal share after a marathon board meeting on Wednesday night.

Analysts said the long-awaited offer was better than expected as the proposed cost is "surprisingly" cheap.

The company said it would finance the acquisition with its own cash resources of US$3 billion and with loans from its parent company, China National Offshore Oil Corporation, and investment banks, including Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, and the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).

The financing cost is cheap because the interest of US$7 billion in loans provided by the parent company could be low, said Liu Gu, an analyst with Guotai Jun'an Securities (Hong Kong) Corp.

The deal, if it goes ahead, would increase CNOOC's revenue by roughly 122 per cent compared with last year, according to the company's telephone press conference yesterday.

Predictions say the merger would more than double CNOOC's oil and gas production and increase its reserves by nearly 80 per cent to 4 billion barrels of oil equivalent.

"Both Unocal and CNOOC are already primary Asia business. Together we will be one of the regional leaders," CNOOC Chief Financial Officer Yang Hua said yesterday at the presentation.

The deal will also help CNOOC to overtake Sinopec as the second-largest oil company of any kind in China after PetroChina.

CNOOC's executives said the merger would help it achieve a more balanced oil and gas portfolio, enabling it to reduce the risk from the fluctuation of crude oil prices.

In return, China's fast-growing liquefied natural gas (LNG) market will allow Unocal to accelerate the exploration and development of gas resources and position it as a long-term supplier to the Bontang LNG plant in Indonesia, the executives said.

"This is a superior and friendly offer to Unocal's shareholders, and we believe they will seriously consider it," CNOOC Chairman Fu Chengyu said.

CNOOC decided not to bid for Unocal at the last minute in March, reportedly because board members were split on whether the proposed bid was in the company's best interests.

But Fu said the company scrapped the proposed bid in March as it needed more evaluation time.

"Now we all believe it is a good project, and we have won unanimous support from the board members," he said.

Meanwhile, Chevron may also raise the terms of its bid to forestall CNOOC's move.

"The US$18.5 billion may just be a start; there will be a second round of wrangling when CNOOC will probably lift its bid to US$20 billion," said a senior official with PetroOverseas who declined to be named.

Posted 06:08 PM | Comments (0)

CNOOC Ltd., fully prepared to participate in CFIUS review of Unocal

BEIJING, June 24 (Xinhuanet) -- Fu Chengyu, Chairman and CEO of China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) Ltd., said Friday that his corporation is braced to participate in a review of the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS) of its merging transaction of Unocal.

In a public statement, Fu said that CNOOC Ltd. is pleased that Unocal has indicated its readiness to engage in the talks concerning CNOOC Ltd.'s all cash offer and CNOOC Ltd. has been prepared to start immediately.

CNOOC Ltd., China's largest offshore oil and gas producer, announced early Thursday that it has proposed a merger with Unocal,a major U.S. oil company, offering 67 US dollars in cash per Unocal share.

The offer values Unocal at about 18.5 billion US dollars, representing a premium for Unocal's shareholders of about 1.5 billion US dollars over the value of Chevron Corporation's offer, based on its closing price on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) on Wednesday.

As having indicated upon announcing the bid, Fu reiterated thatCNOOC Ltd. believe this offer brings superior value to Unocal shareholders.

"It is important to know that 70 percent of Unocal's current reserves are located in Asia, and that is one of the reasons why this transaction makes sound business sense for our company," he said.

In the statement Fu reaffirmed that substantially all of the oil and gas produced by Unocal in the U.S. will continue to be sold in the U.S., and the development of properties in the Gulf ofMexico will provide further supplies of oil and gas for American markets.

Fu also restressed the commitment on behalf of CNOOC Ltd. to retain the jobs of substantially all of Unocal's employees, as opposed to Chevron's plan to lay off employees, especially in the Unite States.

According to him, in preparing the bid, CNOOC Ltd. always anticipated that its merger with Unocal would be reviewed by the CFIUS and they are fully prepared to participate in such a review with assurances to Unocal to address concerns relating to energy security and ownership of Unocal assets located in the U.S.

CNOOC Ltd. has said they are prepared to sell or take other actions with respect to Unocal's minority pipeline interests and storage assets as long as such a sale does not cause substantial economic harms to Unocal, and will reiterate this commitment to the CFIUS committee at proper time, said Fu.

"We are also open to discussing with CFIUS placing non-exploration and production assets under American management through arrangements that CFIUS has approved often in the past andare prepared to enter into talks with the CFIUS committee as soon as the committee is ready to do so," Fu said. Enditem

Posted 05:58 PM | Comments (0)


From CNOOC corporation news,
CNOOC Briefing Office

China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) is a state-owned Chinese company, which is developing into an international first-class energy company with big and quick strides and full of determined and dauntless gumption and youthful spirit...
(Quoted from CNOOC website)

(23 June 2005) – CNOOC Limited announces today that it has proposed a merger with Unocal Corporation (“Unocal”; NYSE: UCL) offering US$67 in cash per Unocal share. The offer values Unocal at apsal is a superior offer for Unocal shareholders. The deal is fully financed, subject to customary closing conditions, and priced in line with market values for comparable businesses. We hope to be able to enter into a diaproximately US$18.5 billion and represents a premium for Unocal's shareholders of approximately $1.5 billion over the value of Chevron Corporation's (“Chevron”) offer based Chevron's closing price on NYSE on 21 June 2005.

In a letter sent to the Chairman of Unocal, CNOOC Limited Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Fu Chengyu stressed that the approach is friendly and the company is seeking a consensual transaction with Unocal. This proposal is being submitted in accordance with the sale process initiated by Unocal.

CNOOC Limited believes that the combined company would have a leading position in the Asian energy market and an expanded role in the development of China's liquefied natural gas (LNG) market. The combination is expected to more than double CNOOC Limited's oil and gas production and increase its reserves by nearly 80% to approximately four billion barrels of oil equivalent. Approximately 70% of Unocal's current proved oil and gas reserves are in Asia and the Caspian region. It is expected that the merged company would also have an improved oil and gas balance, with total reserves of approximately 53% oil and 47% natural gas.

The transaction is expected to be EPS and cash flow per share accretive in the first full year after completion. CNOOC Limited anticipates that it will maintain a strong, investment-grade credit rating.

Mr. Fu Chengyu, CNOOC Limited Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said: “This friendly, all-cash propologue with Unocal soon and reach agreement on a consensual transaction.”

“For our shareholders, there is a strong business rationale for the combination, as CNOOC Limited and Unocal would form one of the leading international E&P companies and become one of the premier players in the Asian energy market. It would rebalance our portfolio to include more natural gas reserves and strengthen our regional presence by combining with Unocal's complementary Asian asset base. I am confident that the merger will increase shareholder value.”
Mr. Fu added, “We also expect this transaction to be accretive and that we will maintain a strong, investment-grade credit rating.”

Commitments concerning Unocal's U.S. assets

CNOOC Limited is committed to fully integrating Unocal's strong management team and workforce into the combined company. The transaction will not adversely affect the U.S. oil and gas market since Unocal's U.S. oil and gas production will continue to be sold in the U.S. Unocal's U.S. oil and gas production accounts for less than 1% of total U.S. oil and gas consumption.
In connection with this offer, CNOOC Limited has provided the following assurances:
·CNOOC Limited is willing to continue Unocal's practice of selling and marketing all or substantially all of the oil and gas produced from Unocal's U.S. properties in U.S. markets.
·CNOOC Limited will seek to retain substantially all Unocal employees, including those in the U.S. This is in contrast to the existing Chevron proposal where Chevron has already announced plans to extract hundreds of millions of dollars of cost savings from the merger annually, including from employee layoffs.
· CNOOC Limited hopes and will endeavor to persuade members of Unocal's executive and operational management to join the management team of the combined company.
·CNOOC Limited will accept and agree to the terms of Unocal's recent FTC settlement relating to its patent rights in reformulated gasoline.
·CNOOC Limited is confident that it will obtain Exon-Florio approval. To this end, CNOOC Limited is willing to divest or take other actions with respect to any of Unocal's non-E&P assets in North America to the extent such divestitures and actions would not give rise to a material adverse effect on Unocal, including considering special management arrangements for Unocal's U.S. non-controlling, minority pipeline interests and its storage assets.

Financing structure

The financing is structured to ensure that the company will retain a strong balance sheet and maintain future financial flexibility. The transaction will be financed from the following sources:
· CNOOC Limited's cash resources of more than US$3 billion;
· Bridge loans provided by Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan totaling US$3 billion, which are expected to be replaced by permanent debt financing in the form of bonds at or shortly after completion;
· Bridge loans provided by Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) in the amount of US$6 billion, which are expected to be replaced by permanent debt financing in the form of term loans at or shortly after completion;
· A long-term, subordinated loan provided by CNOOC Limited's majority shareholder, China National Offshore Oil Corporation, of US$4.5 billion, which is expected to receive equity treatment for credit ratings purposes; and
· A subordinated bridge loan provided by CNOOC Limited's majority shareholder of US$2.5 billion, which is expected to be refinanced with equity within two years.
CNOOC Limited has received commitment letters from each of Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, ICBC and CNOOC Limited's majority shareholder for the financing noted above.

Strengths and opportunities

CNOOC Limited believes that the merged group would benefit greatly from the companies' complementary strengths.

· Platform for growth: This combination is expected to more than double CNOOC Limited's production and increase reserves by nearly 80%. CNOOC Limited believes that Unocal has an attractive portfolio of development projects with a substantial growth profile.

· An Asia-focused energy company: Both companies are already primarily Asian businesses – together they will be a leader in one of the fastest growing regions in the world. It is estimated that 85% of the combined reserves of the companies are located in Asia and the Caspian region.

· A leading regional gas business: Sixty percent of Unocal's reserves are natural gas (mostly in Asia). CNOOC Limited currently has 35% of its reserves in gas; it is estimated that the combined company will have a more balanced portfolio with reserves of 53% oil and 47% natural gas. CNOOC Limited believes that an improved oil and gas balance will reduce its exposure to commodity price cyclicality.

CNOOC Limited believes that China's LNG market potential will allow it to accelerate the exploration and development of gas resources and position it as a long-term supplier to the Bontang LNG plant. This is an important part of the environmental drive to promote cleaner burning fuels.

· Optimizing investment programs: CNOOC Limited expects to generate considerable synergies from the optimization of the combined exploration and capital investment programs of the two companies.

· Proven management and world-class technical expertise: CNOOC Limited believes that Unocal has an excellent operational management team, and CNOOC Limited can also draw on Unocal's deepwater drilling and production expertise.


CNOOC Limited is advised by Goldman Sachs (Asia) L.L.C. and J.P. Morgan Securities (Asia Pacific) Ltd. N M Rothschild & Sons (Hong Kong) Limited also assisted the board's independent non-executive directors in their review of the transaction.

More information about the transaction can be found through CNOOC Limited's website (www.cnoocltd.com) and through CNOOC Limited's transaction microsite (www.transactioninfo.com/cnooc).

Posted 05:30 PM | Comments (0)

May 26, 2005

Why does US overestimate China's military power?

The official People's Daily of China quotes a recent Pentagon report released to the US Congress on Chinese military power as "playing the hackneyed theme of China threat theory again". "In order to strengthen its persuasion - writes the People's Daily - a large amount of fabricated contents (...) were filled to the report such as the huge Chinese military expenditure in recent years". Why does the US Department of defence "spare no effort to exaggerate China's military strenght?" wonders the official newspaper, only to find the following five answers. First, "the US military and right-wing forces (are) eager to 'make' a new strategic rival since the anti-terrorism war is drawing to an end, in order to maintain its position and force in the American political circles". Second, to "make a favorable atmosphere for the US global strategic readjustment" in East Asia. Third, to "bear away the huge profit orders for the American interest groups of military industries". Fourth, to "exaggerate China's military strength for the excuse of (US) military sales to Taiwan". Fifth, in order to deter European countries and Israel from "military technological cooperation with China".

Posted 07:42 PM | Comments (0)

May 20, 2005

Chinese textile producers worry about US protectionnism

Xinhua, the government-run Chinese newswire agency, provides in the following story a sample of reactions among Chinese textile businessmen, after the US reintroduced trade barriers against Chinese imports in the textile and garment sectors. Trade had been liberalized on January 1st, according to the rules of the WTO that the US and European governments had agreed upon ten years ago. But the sudden surge of Chinese imports seems to have taken the US and Europe by surprise. The textile and garment industries have lobbied successfully with the Bush administration to have the limits reintroduced. The Chinese now seem themselves taken by surprise in front of these protectionnist tensions abroad.

BEIJING, May 20 (Xinhuanet) -- Chinese textile producers are adjusting their development strategies after the United States said Wednesday it would impose new limits on imports of clothing from China. Wednesday's announcement was the second time in five days that Washington imposed such quotas, acting on complaints that a surge of Chinese apparel was hurting U.S. companies. The new batch of Chinese goods facing restrictions are men's and boy's cotton and man-made fiber shirts; man-made fiber trousers; man-made fiber knit shirts and blouses; and combed cotton yarn. Shipments of Chinese textiles and apparel to the U.S. have surged since the end of global quotas Jan.1.
On Friday, the United States said it was re-imposing quotas on three categories of clothing imports from China, including cotton trousers, cotton knit shirts and underwear. It was not clear how many Chinese textile companies would be affected, and many businessmen in Zhejiang, China's famous textile production province, were highly concerned. "We are discussing the latest situation," said Han Licheng, secretary of the Zhejiang Provincial Clothing Association, "Two textile magnates have rushed to my office for a closed-door discussion after the United States declared its decision." In Wenzhou, a booming business center in Zhejiang, about one third of local enterprises are engaged in textile exports, of which one third target European countries and the United States, said Ni Xueshan, director of the cotton textile branch of the Wenzhou Clothing Chamber. Ni believed the US quotas will have two direct results. Some Chinese enterprises will first export the textiles to a third country to evade the quotas, not only increasing Chinese companies' cost, but also making US investors, retailers and consumers pay more, he said. The new quotas might bring great pressure to the Chinese domestic textile industry and some small companies will face closedowns, triggering more unemployment, he said. The bad news had wings at Zhili, a township famous for the children apparel, in Huzhou, a city in Zhejiang Province, soon after it was declared. The township is home to 5,700-plus children apparel enterprises, about 21 percent of the domestic market. The township reported an annual production of 150 million pieces (suits) and an annual production value of 3.5 billion yuan (421,69 million US dollars). Since April this year, less foreign businessmen have come to the town for business talks and many local businessmen were nervous about phone calls, praying they were not bringing order cancellations, said Jiang Guoliang, a manager with the Wobao Children Apparel Company. "It's of no use blaming the quotas or praying, the situation has already changed and the only thing we can do is to adjust strategies to minimize the impacts the quotas will bring to us," said Jin Changyi, general manager of the Jinqiu (Golden Globe) Textile Company in Hangzhou, capital of Zhejiang Province. His company exported about 300,000 to 400,000 pieces of cotton and silk clothes each year, including 50,000 pieces to the United States, most of which were children's clothes. "From the beginning of the year, we have received fewer orders from Europe and the United States. The US quotas have brought us difficulties," Jin said. Some enterprises are planning to enlarge markets in the Middle East and the America and increase the share of silk products exports. Many companies are considering improving the quality instead of the quantity of their products. "When blaming the United States' unfair trade principles, we should learn to win both domestic and overseas markets. Our company will not abandon our exports, worth of 20 to 30 million of US dollars each year, and meanwhile the overseas business partners will not let us go easily for our reliable quality and prices," said Xu Zhongping, sales manager of the Qiuyinong Company Limited in Hangzhou. "China's enterprises should not only focus on quantity, but also work hard to improve quality," he said.

Posted 01:34 AM | Comments (0)

Chinese experts: US politicizes the currency issue

The US Treasury, in its twice-yearly report to Congress on exchange rates and trade, put Beijing on notice that it expected a revaluation of the Chinese currency (renminbi or yuan) within six months, in order to reduce the US trade deficit with China.
Financial experts in China accuse the US of trying to politicize the issue. "This is an old trick of the US to make currency politicized", said Li Yang, head of the Institute of Finance at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Yi Xianrong, of the same Institute, said that the labor cost gap between China and the US is so huge that even if the renminbi is revalued by 50% or 100% (which is not realistic) the competitiveness of "made in China" products would not decrease enough to have a significant impact on bilateral trade. Professor Zhou Shijian, a senior trade expert from the Beijing-based Chinese Association for American Studies, also said that a revaluation of the yuan will not affect the US trade deficit. Li Jiange, deputy director of the Development and research center of the State council (a governmental institution) said "it's unrealistic for the US to solve its own problems by way of forcing other currencies to revaluate". He added that China's savings rate is two to three times that of the US and even if its trade deficit with China is removed, it will be exhibited in trade with other countries.

Posted 12:54 AM | Comments (0)

May 16, 2005

Trade War Continued

Chinese people like America, and they hate her, too. Many people in the other parts of the world share the smae emotion: love and hate simultaneously. More than one year ago, there was an article on Newsweek titled China, Trade And Progress, by Robert J. Samuelson. It began with F. Scott Fitzgerald's words, "The test of a first-class mind is the ability to hold two opposing views...at the same time". This was used to describe the reality of people's life and economic development in China.

The reason of this article being written was the trade complaint by AFL-CIO against China."The AFL-CIO says that repressive labor practices have depressed China's factory wages by 47 percent to 86 percent, lowered the prices of Chinese exports and cumulatively cost avout 727,000 U.S. jobs."

Now, one year later, on May 13, 2005 the Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements (CITA) today announced affirmative decisions in three self-initiated textile safeguard cases:cotton knit shirts and blouses (Category 338/339), cotton trousers (Category 347/348), and cotton and man-made fiber underwear (Category 352/652).

“Today CITA announced its decision to invoke textile safeguards based on market disruption and threat of market disruption due to the magnitude of increases in textile imports from China and China’s significant capacity to increase production and exports to the United States in these product categories,” said Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez.(http://www.commerce.gov/opa/press/Secretary_Gutierrez/2005_Releases/May/13_CITA.htm)

Beijing reacts angrily as it uesd to in the past years. China's Ministry of Commerce immediately voiced its strong opposition to this decision, which it said had "run counter to World Trade Organization's agreements" and "set a very bad precedent."

Also,Textile manufacturers and exporters in China said on Sunday that they were outraged by the "hasty and unwise" decision of the United States to re-impose quotas on imports of three types of Chinese clothing, warning that such a decision would hurt both sides badly.(http://english.mofcom.gov.cn/aarticle/newsrelease/commonnews/200505/20050500091422.html)

As a student major in Journalism in a business school in Shanghai, this conflicts between China and the U.S. is something common Chinese could not ignore but don't know how to do with it. Chinese know much more about the U.S. and the American life style than Americans do about China. This is inevitable as U.S. is the center of globalization. Most of the value and culture being spread in the wave of globalization are something about the American way of life.

The official media always say that Washington sitll thinks and acts when dealing with China as they did in the Cold War period, which means U.S. still feel very uncomfortable about China being a communist party.Wall Street Journal always say PRC(People's Republic of China) is governed in dictatorship.

However, a letter written by an Italian reader published on the April issue of Bloomberg Market said that China may become the biggest democratic power in the world. The author argued that China is nuturing its economy and democracy using dictatorship, just as Japan, Taiwan, Singapore did before.

People may laugh at that idea. Ridiculous? Not necessary. China is a country with thousands of years of history and culture. Chinese, however, are more influenced by other culture than its own due to historical reasons, such as Culture Revolution.

If one day, you try travel over China by train from one city to another city, every now and then, you will see bunch of people sitting together, discussing politics, both domestic and international. Deng Xiao Ping was a great man, who let Chinese people being able to see the whole world, through the media and pirate VCD, DVD. This is part of the plan. The government and the Party and the people are just players, Mr. Deng meant to let every player realize their own stakes and rights and gradually know how to fight for them. By implement the Reform and Open Policy and make the policy continue to be effective in the following years even after his death, Mr. Deng is changing the whole scenario of China. The key for Deng to implement was dictatorship.

No matter what, we are witnesses of the history, Chinese like America, the democracy and outstanding system of the society; Chinese hate America too sometimes, due to ideological problems. "We've got two opposing ideas on the brain, and- as Fitzgerald said- somehow we've still got to function."

Posted 12:48 AM | Comments (0)

April 08, 2005

Only 10% of Chinese consider Bush "friendly"

In a recent government-sponsored survey, more than half (56.7%) of the Chinese respondents said that the US government is trying to "contain China's development", while 66% said they liked American people. Asked "why you do not like the US government", 37.6% mentioned the American support to Taiwan. 41% of the responders said that Taiwan could trigger a war between China and the US. The survey was done by Beijing-based Global Times (a government-run newspaper focused on international news) and the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences that acts also as a governmental think-tank. China Daily, the government-run English language newspaper, published this story with more details on the survey.

BEIJING, Mar. 2 -- More than half of Chinese said the United States government is containing China, while 66.1 per cent said they liked American people, a recent survey showed.  
The survey, done by Beijing-based Global Times in cooperation with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, found that 49.2 per cent of the responders consider the United States a competitor, and 60.5 per cent said that how to resolve the Taiwan issue will definitely influence Sino-US bilateral relations.
By picking 1,175 persons in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chongqing and Wuhan, five of China’s biggest metropolises, the survey found only 10.4 per cent considering Washington a friendly government, and 56.7 per cent saying it is trying to contain China's development.
Asked why "you do not like the United State government", 37.6 per cent said that Washington supported Taiwan regime by selling it weapons, 31.7 per cent said Bush administration launched the Iraqi war under false claims, and 7.9 per cent based their dislike on increasing military ties between the United States and Japan, which till today refused to apologize to the Chinese people for the enormous hurt it inflicted on China during WWII.
And, 45.0 per cent anticipated status quo of bilateral ties during the 2nd Bush term, while 29.4 per cent said that the relations will improve. Those expecting worsening relations account for 11.7 per cent.
More than 46 per cent said that growing economic links in the past years has helped political exchange and promoted friendship between the two peoples. Those who admire or accept American culture make up 59.4 per cent.
Up to 41.2% of the responders said that China and the United State could possibly enter into hostility and conflict because of Taiwan in the future.
Yan Xuetong, a foreign policy expert with Beijing's Qinghua University, said in an interview that the survey results proved his long-time belief that although the majority of Chinese do not like Washington government, because of its unfriendly China policy, they like American people and appreciate American culture.
"It's a blend of love and hatred," Yan said.
Tao Wendao, another foreign policy expert with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, shared the same belief. He said that American people are also divided on China. A survey by CNN and the USA Today, in September 2003, showed that 9 per cent of Americans consider China an ally, while more than 40 per cent consider China a potential enemy.
That's why the joggling of engagement and containment (of China) is going on in Washington, Tao said.
Professor Yan Xuetong said that Chinese holds clear-cut different attitudes of American people, American society and American government. The major factor of Chinese people's discontent with the United States government is Washington's foreign policy, especially, its selling weapons to Taiwan.
(Source: China Daily)

Posted 03:11 AM | Comments (0)

March 24, 2005

Kyrgyzstan: Chinese, and Russian perceptions

Kyrkyzstan-AP-StarPHoenix.jpgKyrgyz President Askar Akayev, has been expelled by protesters who overtook the presidential palace in Bishkek early March 24. What happens next is anybody’s guess at this point, but perceptions of the US and its intentions will play a siginficant role.

These are some extracts taken from George Friedman’s Intelligence brief published today by Stratfor.com:

What makes all of this particularly interesting is that both Russia and China have a tendency to view any upheaval in regions where they take interest as part of a conspiracy orchestrated by the United States in order to challenge their hegemony.[...]

This might be paranoid thinking. It might be prudent "worst-case scenario" planning. Or it might be a rational appreciation of Washington's intentions. Whichever it is, the simple fact is that both regional powers regard any instability in any country in the area as being generated by the United States and intended to harm them.[...]

The Russians […] see the United States turning its attention from al Qaeda to other issues, and they don't buy the Bush administration's line that its political involvement in the region -- specifically in Ukraine, where Washington helped secure a win by pro-Western President Viktor Yushchenko late last year -- is simply about the American love for free elections. They believe the United States sought to install a pro-U.S. government in Kiev in order to bring Ukraine into NATO and undermine Russian national security.[...]

The Chinese don't believe the United States is obsessed with al Qaeda any longer. They believe the Americans are obsessed with China, and they see events in Kyrgyzstan as a security threat.

Posted 05:58 PM | Comments (0)