The Caixin-Sinica Business Brief, episode 44


Welcome to the 44th installment of the Caixin-Sinica Business Brief, a weekly podcast that brings you the most important business stories of the week from China’s top source for business and financial news. Produced by Kaiser Kuo of our Sinica Podcast, it features a business news roundup, plus conversations with Caixin reporters and editors.

This week:

  • We analyze China’s trade deficit number in March, which reached nearly $5 billion, marking the first monthly deficit since January 2017.
  • We discuss Xi Jinping’s reiterated promises to open up the country’s economy to foreign investors at the opening ceremony of the Boao Forum for Asia Annual Conference 2018, saying change would come “as soon as possible.”
  • We learn that a second allegation of sexual misconduct has been leveled against Shen Yang 沈阳, a former professor at Beijing’s prestigious Peking University, who was previously accused of raping a student before she committed suicide 20 years ago.
  • We acknowledge long-awaited guidelines by Beijing to allow out-of-towners to apply for full access to the capital’s public services.
  • We hear that four popular Chinese news apps, including top news aggregator Jinri Toutiao, have been removed from major mobile app stores — the latest regulatory blow amid the country’s tightening scrutiny over online content.
  • We note that a slew of major Chinese social media platforms have swiftly removed content deemed to “violate core socialist values” as authorities tighten their grip on online content.
  • We explore shared-workspace provider WeWork’s acquisition of Naked Hub, one of its China-based rivals.
  • We delve into Chinese social media giant Tencent’s ambition in the burgeoning Wi-Fi business on China’s fast-running bullet trains in hopes of extending its access to the massive data of urban travelers.

In addition, we talk with Joshua Drummer, editor at Caixin Global, about AI-powered robots and banking. We also chat with Doug Young, managing editor of Caixin Global, about Didi Chuxing, one of China’s big internet companies, and its expansion outside of China.

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