Links for Tuesday, April 21, 2020 - SupChina
Free

We're a new type of news publication

China news you won't read elsewhere.

Weekly Newsletter

Get a roundup of the most important and interesting stories coming out of China.

Podcasts

Sinica, TechBuzz China, and our 6 other shows are the undisputed champs of China podcasts. Listen now.

Feature Articles

Interactive, web-based deep dives into the real China.

Premium

Join the thousands of executives, diplomats, and journalists that rely on SupChina for daily analysis of the full China story.

Daily Newsletter

All the news, every day. Premium analysis directly from our Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Goldkorn.

24/7 Slack Community

Have China-related questions and want answers? Our Slack community is a place to learn, network, and opine.

Free Live Events & More

Monthly live conference calls with leading experts, free entry to SupChina live events in cities around the world, and more.

"A jewel in the crown of China reporting. I go to it, look for it daily. Why? It adds so much insight into the real China. Essential news, culture, color. I find SupChina superior."
— Max Baucus, former U.S. Ambassador to China

Free

We're a new type of news publication

China news you won't read elsewhere.

Weekly Newsletter

Get a roundup of the most important and interesting stories coming out of China.

Podcasts

Sinica, TechBuzz China, and our 6 other shows are the undisputed champs of China podcasts. Listen now.

Feature Articles

Interactive, web-based deep dives into the real China.

OR… for more in-depth analysis and an online community of China-focused professionals:

Learn About Premium Access Now!
Learn More
Minimize
Learn More
Minimize

Links for Tuesday, April 21, 2020

BUSINESS AND TECHNOLOGY:

State-owned enterprises (SOEs) administered by China’s national government generated 58.8% less profit than they did in the first quarter of last year, making 130.4 billion yuan ($18.43 billion) in total with 26 of them suffering net losses, said Peng Huagang, spokesperson for the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC). Companies under SASAC in the oil drilling, refining, and airline sectors ran at an overall loss.

China’s ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing has raised $150 million from SoftBank and Legend Capital for its bike-sharing unit, Qingju. This is the first time it has raised money from outside investors for the business, according to people with direct knowledge of the deal.

Media reports in recent days have suggested that Didi raised $1 billion for the bike-sharing unit. But $850 million of that came from Didi itself, which was continuing its previous investment in the unit, the people said.

Chinese ride-hailing platform Didi Chuxing has reportedly secured a $1 billion round of fresh funding for its bike rental business Qingju, as the company seeks to diversify growth in the Chinese mobility market with a target of 100 million daily trips for the next three years. People familiar with the deal told LatePost (in Chinese) that Didi poached part of the investment away from Ant Financial’s Hellobike.

The president of Alibaba’s ecommerce site Tmall [Jiǎng Fán 蒋凡] has asked the company to launch investigations against himself following an affair accusation made by his wife on social media platform Weibo, local newspaper Beijing News [in Chinese] reported Saturday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Growth at Chinese telecom group Huawei came to an abrupt halt in the first three months of the year as the coronavirus outbreak brought its home country to a near standstill.

The Shenzhen-based firm reported first quarter revenue of 182 billion yuan ($25.7 billion), an increase of just 1.4% compared to the same period a year earlier. That is a huge drop from growth of 39% it reported for the January to March period in 2019.

It also warned of a delay to the rollout of 5G networks in Europe.

SCIENCE, HEALTH, AND THE ENVIRONMENT:

The University of Washington School of Medicine went to extraordinary lengths to airlift tens of thousands of COVID-19 testing kits from China during a nationwide shortage of sampling swabs and the liquid that preserves specimens for diagnostic testing…

UW Medicine has decided to halt, at least temporarily, the use of the testing kits from Lingen Precision Medical Products, after a small percentage of the kits showed signs of contamination.

POLITICS AND CURRENT AFFAIRS:

The Hong Kong Bar Association has said that Beijing’s agencies in Hong Kong have no power to “supervise” the city’s internal affairs, while pro-democracy lawmakers have demanded clarification from the government on the constitutional status of the liaison office.

In a statement released on Monday, the Bar Association said both the liaison office and the Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office (HKMAO) are bound by the Basic Law, including being subjected to the prohibition of interference in the city’s internal affairs as set out in Article 22.

The America, an amphibious assault ship, and the Bunker Hill, a guided missile cruiser, entered contested waters off Malaysia. At the same time, a Chinese government ship in the area has for days been tailing a Malaysian state oil company ship carrying out exploratory drilling. Chinese and Australian warships have also powered into nearby waters, according to the defense experts.

Lawmakers and former officials are making a last-ditch push to persuade the Trump administration to halt plans to invest billions of federal employee retirement dollars in Chinese companies that Washington suspects of human rights abuses or threatening U.S. security, according to sources and documents seen by Reuters.

South Korean and Chinese officials and sources familiar with U.S. intelligence on Tuesday cast doubt on reports that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is gravely ill after a cardiovascular procedure even as the White House closely monitored the matter.

Daily NK, a Seoul-based speciality website, reported late on Monday that Kim, who is believed to be about 36, was recovering after undergoing the procedure on April 12. It cited one unnamed source in North Korea.

A Chinese professor accused of espionage has won his case against a Belgian order which barred him from the European Union’s visa-free Schengen Area for eight years.

Sòng Xīnníng 宋新宁 had just completed his tenure as head of a Confucius Institute in Brussels when he was accused last year by Belgium’s state security service of conducting espionage activities and his visa was cancelled, effectively denying him entry to 26 European countries.

A judgment handed down by Belgium’s Council for Alien Law Litigation found in Song’s favour on a procedural technicality. It made no ruling on the validity of the espionage claims.

Twenty facilities that imagery analysis, press and professional journals suggest house Uyghur children have been identified in this first study of geolocating China’s detention infrastructure targeting Uyghurs and other Muslim minority groups.

A prominent Chinese human rights lawyer barred from returning home after his prison release two weeks ago has been prohibited from reuniting with his family after a 14-day quarantine period.

Wáng Quánzhāng’s 王全璋 wife and rights groups fear authorities are using the coronavirus pandemic as a pretext to hold him indefinitely under de facto house arrest.

SOCIETY AND CULTURE:

Victoria’s Secret has named actor Zhōu Dōngyǔ 周冬雨 as its newest brand ambassador, prompting discussion in China about whether the American lingerie retailer has lost touch with its image, or whether it is simply aiming to reshape outmoded notions of feminine beauty…

Most of the online chatter over the new partnership has been positive, with many saying they appreciate how Victoria’s Secret is attempting to expand the conventional understanding of “sexy.”

“We should see more diversity,” one Weibo user commented under a related post [in Chinese]. “It’s not just women such as supermodels who can represent underwear…”

Share

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.