Caixin Media

06.18.13

Will Bond Market Tidying Trigger Clean Sweep?

China’s financial regulators are rewriting rules for the interbank bond market after criminal investigations early this year led to the arrests of several well-known bond traders and exposed serious flaws in the market’s supervision system.The...

Online Furor as Prosecutors Recommend ‘Leniency’ for Chinese Rail Boss

Liz Carter
Over the past 24 hours, the most viral post on Sina Weibo, has been a revelation that prosecutors advised that Liu Zhijun be given a “lenient sentence,” despite his admitted accumulation of 374 houses and over US$100...

Liu Zhijun Admits to Taking 64.6 Mln Yuan in Bribes

Wang Chen
The bribery charges involved securing favors for 11 people over the course of 25 years in project bidding, promotions and allocation of rail transport quotas. The court session ended in three and half hours without specifying a sentencing...

China Officials Seek Career Shortcut With Feng Shui

Dan Levin
New York Times
As Marxist ideology has faded in China, ancient mystical beliefs once banned by the Communist Party are gaining ground. This mystical revival is attracting devoted followers in that most forbidden of realms: the marbled, atheistic halls of...

China Detains Activist for Subversion After Pressuring Leaders On Wealth

Sui-Lee Wee
Reuters
President Xi Jinping’s administration has detained at least 10 activists who have led a campaign for officials to publicly disclose their wealth - the first coordinated crackdown by the new government on activists. 

More Citizens Detained in China for Demanding Public Disclosure of Officials’ Personal Wealth

Yaxue Cao
Seeing Red in China
Dissident intellectuals pointed out that the regime is not afraid of what you say, no matter how strong; however, it is fearful of any form of organization and collective activities, and it has been cracking down harshly on these street...

A Long Ride Toward a New China (Video)

Stephen Maing
New York Times
Every summer, the 59-year-old Chinese blogger Zhang Shihe rides his bicycle thousands of miles to the plateaus, deserts and hinterlands of North Central China. In this Op-Doc video, we meet Mr. Zhang, known to his many followers online as “...

Zhu Ling Attempted Murder Case On Weibo

Emily Parker
New Republic
The 19-year-old case has again become so blazing hot on Chinese social media that as of Saturday, the name of the victim, Zhu Ling, was censored on Weibo. But it's too late: The case has been brought to the attention of tens of millions of...

Being A Chinese Government Official Is One Of The Worst Jobs In The World

Lily Kuo
Quartz
Chinese officials, like political dissidents or regular citizens, also suffer under a party that is accountable chiefly to itself and a government that arbitrarily enforces laws.

Son Of Chinese Official Jailed After Attempted Bribe And Threat

James Griffiths
Shanghaiist
At a meeting he had requested to discuss a 37 percent mark he had recently received on his dissertation (3 percentage points short of a pass) Li Yang offered £5,000 (47,000 yuan). He also came armed with an air pistol.  

Watch Imprint On Quake Official’s Wrist Goes Viral

Laura Zhou
South China Morning Post
A picture showing an official's wrist, with what appears to be the imprint of a watch, has gone viral with many Netizens wondering whether the timepiece was removed in light of scandals involving corrupt officials caught wearing expensive...

China Expands Crackdown On Anticorruption Activists

Andrew Jacobs
New York Times
The arrests of four activists have both infuriated and disappointed reformers and human rights advocates, who say the crackdown bodes ill for Mr. Xi’s widely trumpeted war on graft. 

As Cancer Rates Rise In China, Trust Remains Low

Didi Kristen Tatlow
New York Times
At the top of the list of reasons China may be facing a cancer crisis is the crucial issue of mistrust between patient and doctor. The lack of trust, reflected in regular accounts in the Chinese news media, is rooted in a perception that...

China Dismisses N.Y.T.'s Pulitzer-Winning Report On Wen

Agence France-Presse
The article provoked anger from authorities in China, who said it was part of a “smear” by “voices” opposed to the country’s development. The Times’ Chinese and English websites were subsequently blocked in China and remain inaccessible as...

Challenges Mount For China’s President

Bill Bishop
Deal Book
Whatever honeymoon President Xi Jinping of China may have been having appears to be over. Now the president must grapple with the H7N9 virus, tensions over North Korea, an economic slowdown, corruption, and a host of other issues. 

Books

04.17.13

A Death in the Lucky Holiday Hotel

Pin Ho, Wenguang Huang
The downfall of Bo Xilai in China was more than a darkly thrilling mystery. It revealed a cataclysmic internal power struggle between Communist Party factions, one that reached all the way to China’s new president Xi Jinping.The scandalous story of the corruption of the Bo Xilai family—the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood; Bo’s secret lovers; the secret maneuverings of Bo’s supporters; the hasty trial and sentencing of Gu Kailai, Bo’s wife—was just the first rumble of a seismic power struggle that continues to rock the very foundation of China’s all-powerful Communist Party. By the time it is over, the machinations in Beijing and throughout the country that began with Bo’s fall could affect China’s economic development and disrupt the world’s political and economic order.—PublicAffairs

Elite In China Face Austerity Under Xi’s Rule

Andrew Jacobs
New York Times
Warning that graft and gluttony threaten to bring down the ruling Communists, Mr. Xi has ordered an end to boozy, taxpayer-financed banquets and the bribery that often takes the form of Louis Vuitton bags. 

Conversation

03.19.13

China’s New Leaders Say They Want to Fight Corruption. Can They? Will They?

Andrew J. Nathan & Ouyang Bin
In his first press conference after taking office as China's new premier, Li Keqiang declared that one of his top priorities would be to fight corruption, because “Corruption and the reputation of our government are as incompatible as fire and...

China Acknowledges Emerging Role Of Non-Profit Sector

Associated Press
China pledged on Wednesday to allow non-profit-making groups to play a greater role in society in an acknowledgement of the growing importance of independent organisations the government traditionally has treated with suspicion. 

Two Cabinet Agencies Are Cut In Restructuring By China

Edward Wong
New York Times
The Health Ministry will merge with the National Population and Family Planning Commission, while other ministries and agencies, like the Chinese F.D.A., are being restructured or given more power. 

Caixin Media

03.10.13

Finding IPO Alley

China’s IPO action has been locked in ice since October by China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) officials intent on boosting investor confidence and improving scrutiny of stock market hopefuls.Yet the heat is on for aspiring executives at...

Communist Party Mouthpiece Rebukes Feckless Children Of Officials

Tom Phillips
Telegraph
The People’s Daily editorial was published following reports that the son of General Li Shuangjiang - a revered PLA crooner - had been detained in connection with a serious sexual assault in a Beijing hotel. 

China Austerity Drive Becomes A Joke

William Kazer and Olivia Geng
Wall Street Journal
Beijing recently decided to take a more populist approach to its austerity campaign by making it a theme of the entertainment on CCTV’s widely watched Lunar New Year’s Eve gala. 

Conversation

02.22.13

Will Investment in China Grow or Shrink?

Donald Clarke & David Schlesinger
Donald Clarke:I don’t have the answer as to whether investment in China will grow or shrink, but I do have a few suggestions for how to think about the question. First, we have to clarify why we want to know the answer to this question: what do we...

Sinica Podcast

02.21.13

Death, Fraud, and Corporate Skullduggery

Kaiser Kuo & Bill Bishop from Sinica Podcast
This week on Sinica, we talk shop about Caterpillar’s discovery of massive accounting fraud and subsequent $580 million write-down from a Chinese company the American equipment manufacturer acquired. We also look at the mysterious death of an...

China to Make State Firms Turn Over More Profits

Liyan Qi
Wall Street Journal
China unveiled guidelines on its long-awaited income redistribution plan by saying it would boost income for the poor, tighten its grip on illegal income and ask state companies to contribute more profits to the government.

A Survey of China's 24 Most Corrupt Officials in 2012

Barry van Wyk
Danwei
The Renmin University Crisis Management Research Center surveyed 24 cases of corruption that became public knowledge on the Chinese Internet in 2012.

Dead-end Trail to Bo’s Trial in China’s South

John Ruwitch
Reuters
China scotched reports that disgraced politician Bo Xilai’s much anticipated trial would open on Monday, amid chaotic scenes at a courthouse packed with expectant journalists in the south of the country.

Crime With Chinese Characteristics

Ilaria Maria Sala
Wall Street Journal
A review of “The Civil Servant’s Notebook,” the first book by popular novelist Wang Xiaofang to be translated into English. 

Tell-All on the Internet Fells Chinese Official

Andrew Jacobs
New York Times
China's top guardian of Communist literature is said to have provided a woman with a fellowship at his research institute in exchange for $1,600. The sex and jewelry came later...

Chemical Spill Pollutes Shanxi Politics

James T. Areddy
Wall Street Journal
After a chemical spill polluted north China waterways–and delays in reporting it raised the specter of an earlier cover-up–the problem is seeping into the political system.

Media

01.07.13

“Help Me Pay This Bill”: A Short But Incisive Send-Up of Chinese Corruption

It is a social media classic, a send-up of the corruption and profligacy that so often enrage Web users in China. A very short story variously titled “I Did Not Eat For Free” and “Help Me Pay This Bill” has been making the rounds for months on Sina...

Nicholas Kristof: Looking for a Jumpstart in China

Nicholas Kristof
New York Times
The new paramount leader, Xi Jinping, will spearhead a resurgence of economic reform, and probably some political easing as well. Mao’s body will be hauled out of Tiananmen Square on his watch, and Liu Xiaobo, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning...

Books

01.04.13

The Rise and Fall of the House of Bo

John Garnaut
When news of the murder trial of prominent Communist Party leader Bo Xilai’s wife reached public attention, it was apparent that, as with many events in the secretive upper echelons of Chinese politics, there was more to the story. Now, during the biggest leadership transition in decades, as the Bo family’s long-time rival Xi Jinping assumes the presidency, China’s rulers are finding it increasingly difficult to keep their poisonous internal divisions behind closed doors.

 Bo Xilai’s breathtaking fall from grace is an extraordinary tale of excess, murder, defection, political purges and ideological clashes going back to Mao himself. China watcher John Garnaut examines how Bo’s stellar rise through the ranks troubled his more reformist peers, as he revived anti-“capitalist roader” sentiment, even while his family and associates enjoyed the more open economy’s opportunities.Amid fears his imminent elevation to the powerful Standing Committee was leading China towards another destructive Cultural Revolution, have his opponents seized their chance to destroy Bo and what he stood for? The trigger was his wife Gu Kailai’s apparently paranoid murder of an English family friend, which exposed the corruption and brutality of Bo’s outwardly successful administration of the massive city of Chongqing. It also led to the one of the highest-level attempted defections in Communist China’s history when Bo’s right-hand man, police chief Wang Lijun, tried to escape the ruins of his sponsor’s reputation.
 
Garnaut explains how this incredible glimpse into the very personal power struggles within the CCP exposes the myth of the unified one-party state. With China approaching super-power status, today’s leadership shuffle may set the tone for international relations for decades. Here, Garnaut reveals a particularly Chinese spin on the old adage that the personal is political.
 —Penguin

Media

01.03.13

How a Run-Down Government Building Became the Hottest Item on China’s Social Web

It is perhaps a sign of the times in China that an image of nothing more than a ramshackle county government building could echo so widely. Since its posting on Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter, hours before New Year’s Eve, the image (see below) has been...

For China’s ‘Great Renewal,’ 8 Trends to Keep an Eye On

Bill Bishop
Deal Book
The Bo Xilai scandal, an economic downturn and the leadership switch from Hu Jintao to Xi Jinping made 2012 one of China’s most eventful years. It is hard to imagine that next year will be as exciting, but there will be change.

Mapping China’s Red Nobility (Graphic)

Bloomberg
Bloomberg
Bloomberg News mapped the families of Communist China’s “Eight Immortals” to reveal the origins of princelings, an elite class that has been able to amass wealth and influence, and exploit opportunities unavailable to most Chinese. Bloomberg tracked...

The Wealth of China’s Princelings

Shai Oster, Mike Forsythe, Dune...
Bloomberg
To reveal the scale and origins of this red aristocracy, Bloomberg News traced the fortunes of 103 people, the Immortals’ direct descendants and their spouses. The result is a detailed look at one part of China’s elite and how its...

Buy, Sell, Adopt: Child Trafficking in China

Mark McDonald
New York Times
In the past two and a half years, according to government statistics, some 54,000 children have been rescued from traffickers.

China's Anti-Corruption Tool Kit: No Flowers, Expensive Booze or 'Empty Talk'

Hannah Beech
Time
China's new leadership has made combating the country’s endemic corruption one of its publicly stated missions...

Who Was Monica Liang?

Alex Campbell and John Russell
Indianapolis Star
A Chicago lawyer who has lured millions in Chinese investment said he was impressed by Liang's ability to build relationships...

Caixin Media

12.16.12

In Bo Xilai’s City, a Legacy of Backstabbing

A deathbed plea brought an unexpected guest to Li Zhuang’s home one day last March, setting in motion a legal process that soon may clear the Beijing lawyer’s name, throw out a number of convictions, and close a sordid chapter of the Bo Xilai story...

The “Just Sisters” Defense: China’s Sex-Scandal Surge

Evan Osnos
New Yorker
Faced with a sex scandal of breathtaking tackiness, a Chinese police district could be forgiven for feeling perhaps a flicker of relief last week when someone in the office stumbled on what must have felt like good news under the circumstances—a...

New CPC Leadership Rejects Extravagance, Bureaucracy

Unattributed
Xinhua
The newly-elected leadership of China's ruling party has pledged to reject extravagance and reduce bureaucratic visits and meetings, in a bid to win the trust and support from the people. In a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Communist...

How Crash Cover-Up Altered China’s Succession

Jonathan Ansfield
New York Times
The outlines of the affair surfaced months ago, but it is now becoming clearer that the crash and the botched cover-up had more momentous consequences, altering the course of the Chinese Communist Party’s once-in-a-decade...

S.E.C. Probe Puts China Listings in Doubt

Kathey Chu, Michael Rapoport and Ben...
Wall Street Journal
The watchdog's look at Chinese affiliates of five U.S. major accounting firms deals a blow to China firms eyeing U.S. captial. ...

The Mistress Industrial Complex

Christina Larson
Foreign Policy
Conjugal entanglements of power, politics, money, and men, usually involving multiple sex partners, are hardly new in China, but how this video came to light was novel: Zhu Ruifeng, a 31-year-old former investigative journalist at the respected...

Top 10 Myths About China in 2012

Evan Osnos
New Yorker
This year may prove to be a pivot point, when the myths that China and the world had adopted about the politics and economics of the People’s Republic began to erode. 

S.E.C. Charges the Chinese Affiliates of 5 Big Accounting Firms

Edward Wyatt
New York Times
The U.S. financial watchdog says the firms failed to produce work papers from their audits of several China-based companies that are under S.E.C. investigation.

How Ordinary Chinese Are Talking And Fighting Back

Frank Langfitt
NPR
Roughly 400 million Chinese use Weibo, China's Twitter, and often do so to expose corruption...

Caixin Media

11.23.12

Asset Transparency Urged to Fight Government Graft

Calls for government officials to disclose personal and family assets are growing louder in China, mainly in reaction to the rising number of corruption cases affecting officialdom.And some officials are listening. A local Communist Party official...

Corruption in China's Orphanages

Patti Waldmeir
Financial Times
One of my children is from an orphanage where the director, a government official, has created a nice little business in orphan homecomings, which include a lavish meal, hugs from the caregivers, and a shower of gifts for the returning child. The...

Two Rising China Leaders Say Open to Wealth Declarations

John Ruwitch
Reuters
After report on Wen Jiabao's "hidden riches," Guangdong and Shanghai party bosses said officials will eventually have to declare assets...

China's Communist Party Congress Opens with a Warning

Peter Ford
Christian Science Monitor
Outgoing President Hu Jintao warned that the Communist Party faces 'collapse' if it fails to clean up corruption...

China Condemns NYTimes Wen Jiabao Wealth Story as 'Smear'

John Sudworth
BBC
Beijing said the report that Wen's family has "controlled ... at least $2.7bn" had "ulterior motives."...

Sinica Podcast

10.26.12

Party Congress Preview

Kaiser Kuo, Jeremy Goldkorn & more from Sinica Podcast
With less than two weeks to go before the Eighteenth Party Congress, speculation on China’s upcoming leadership transition could not be more intense here in Beijing, where insiders are trading lists of potential Politburo Standing Committee (PBSC)...

How a High-Speed Rail Crash Exposed China’s Corruption

Evan Osnos
New Yorker
This was not a bus plunging off a road in a provincial outpost; it was dozens of men and women dying on one of the nation’s proudest achievements—in a newly wired age, when passengers had cell phones and witnesses and critics finally had the tools...

China in Hollywood, Hailed and Investigated

Michael Cieply
New York Times
Movie mogul Han Sanping soon will receive an Asia Society award even as U.S. investigators' continue to question Hollywood studios' dealings with Han's company...

Caixin Media

10.12.12

Bo Xilai as a Catalyst for Political Reform

No matter how you look at it, the disciplinary process surrounding the case of Bo Xilai will have historic implications.Details of the crimes committed by Bo, his wife, Bogu Kailai, and his former right-hand man, Wang Lijun, reflect a level of...

Censorship Reaching 1,000 Miles Exposed on China’s Twitter

Yueran Zhang
Netizens exposing public servants' taste for expensive timepieces has sparked an online and newspaper crackdown.  On October 9, Wang Keqin (@王克勤), an Economic Observer (@经济观察报) reporter posted on Sina Weibo, China’s Twitter, that...