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Ji Siqi

Articles by Ji Siqi

7-Eleven Beijing fined US$23,500 for ‘incomplete maps of China’ that ‘wrongly presented Taiwan’

10 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The Beijing branch of global convenience store giant 7-Eleven has been fined 150,000 yuan (US$23,500) for displaying “incomplete maps of China”, according to an official notice.The map used on the official website of 7-Eleven Beijing “wrongly presented Taiwan province as an independent country”, according to the official Credit China website.Both the maps used on the official website and at the entrance of the company also did not include marks for islands in the South China Sea – over which…

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China’s zero-Covid policy under renewed scrutiny as economic challenges mount

10 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s zero-tolerance approach to the coronavirus pandemic has become the subject of renewed debate by economists, who say the cost to the economy is becoming increasingly unbearable.While the strict disease prevention strategy proved a success early in the pandemic, a more transmissible variant in Omicron, the rising costs of lockdowns, soft domestic consumption, a deteriorating fiscal situation and increasing dissatisfaction among its population are causing diminishing benefits for China,…

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China’s smallest firms failing at historic pace as 4.37 million close up shop and registrations plummet

18 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]About 4.37 million of China’s smallest businesses permanently shut their doors in the first 11 months of the year – more than three times the number of new ones that opened during the same time, according to data obtained by the Post.Figures from public registry tracking firm Tianyancha also show that, for the first time in two decades, the rate of deregistration among micro and small businesses surpassed the number of those newly registered in China.The data is particularly relevant given that…

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China-Australia relations: Beijing’s new wool import quota no ‘real improvement’ in trade ties with Canberra

18 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Beijing’s decision to raise the import quota for Australian wool next year does not signify a thaw in relations between the two countries, only that China relies on the fibre too much to let it become the “victim of trade tension”.Beijing set its 2022 import quota for Australian wool at 40,203 tonnes, up from 38,288 tonnes a year earlier, according to a statement from the Ministry of Commerce on Wednesday.It is the second time China has boosted the import allowance for Australian wool since…

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China’s population crisis prompts county to play Cupid to pair up unwed singles

20 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A county in northern China is collecting information from singles to build an official database for matchmaking purposes, a local official said as the nation faces dire demographic prospects.In response to a citizen’s question on the official “Message Board for Leaders” website operated by, the party boss of Luanzhou in the northern province of Hebei said the county had been distributing application forms for matchmaking activities since November 18.“Single youths fill in personal…

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China’s coronavirus quarantine threatens supply chains as ‘vulnerable’ seamen forced to endure weeks of isolation

22 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Spending months at sea is part of the job for Chinese crewmen like Geng, but as the coronavirus pandemic drastically alters the way people move around the world, the stretches away from home are getting longer and longer.After finishing a seven-month contract in late October and disembarking at the Egyptian seaport of Suez, Geng, who only gave his surname, is still in quarantine one and a half months later.“Two more weeks to go,” he said recently from his third and final hotel room stay in his…

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China’s economic downturn ramps up urgency for Beijing to keep market expectations in check

26 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has pledged to keep market expectations anchored and manageable in the coming year, according to a senior economic official, despite strong headwinds and growing pessimism about the nation’s economic outlook.“There have been fluctuations in terms of market expectations and corporate confidence,” Ning Jizhe, deputy head of China’s National Development and Reform Commission, the country’s top economic planner, said in an interview with Xinhua published on Tuesday. “The importance of keeping…

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China’s hidden debt: ‘corruption problem’ at local levels threatens political, economic stability

26 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The line between China’s anti-corruption and deleveraging campaigns is becoming increasingly blurred as Beijing looks to tackle both political and economic problems that are interwoven at various levels of local government.Since the beginning of the year, various provinces across the country have declared their commitment to “dig deep into the corruption problem hidden in the risks of local government debt”.In a work report published earlier this month by the Commission for Discipline…

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China’s capital concerns prompt calls to prevent ‘disorderly expansion and barbaric growth’

28 days ago

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has doubled down on its de-risking campaign as the country’s economy faces strong headwinds, with “stability” being repeatedly stressed as the top priority in the nation’s economic policies.In a commentary piece published on the People’s Daily website on Sunday, “preventing and dissolving major risks” was described as “an essential requirement and bottom-line mission to ensure the stable and healthy development of the country’s economy”.“From a macroeconomic perspective, we should prevent…

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With US-China trade deal set to expire, insiders reveal what’s really happening behind the scenes

December 18, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]With the phase-one trade deal between the world’s two largest economies due to expire at year’s end, Chinese scholars say supply-side issues are an impediment to China’s ability to meet purchasing targets.Multiple sources in China also told the Post that the two countries have engaged in phase-one discussions at various levels and with more frequency than has been publicly disclosed. And before the Xi-Biden summit in November, they say, the China side vowed to “buy whatever the US can ship over…

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China shipping to Southeast Asia sees prices surge tenfold as reopening demand picks up

December 9, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Shipping rates from China to surrounding Asian countries have soared amid the peak season ahead of the Lunar New Year, adding fuel to an already overheated global shipping market disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic.The Southeast Asian routes of the Ningbo Containerised Freight Index, which reflects the spot rate of container ships departing from the Ningbo-Zhoushan port – the world’s largest port by cargo tonnage – recorded a price surge in the past month and reached an all-time high, with…

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China pledges ‘better business environment’ for foreign firms in latest bid to woo investment

December 3, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has pledged to address overseas companies’ concerns by fast tracking entry of staff into the country and stabilising supply chains in Beijing’s latest effort to lure foreign capital.At a meeting on Thursday with business executives of more than 20 foreign companies, including from the United States, European Union, Britain and Japan, Vice-Premier Hu Chunhua said China will improve services for multinational firms to solve their difficulties and support investment in the country.“We must…

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China alert to global economic risks from Omicron, but ‘financial turmoil’ of early pandemic unlikely

December 2, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The new Omicron variant adds more uncertainty to the global economic recovery and China will closely follow its potential impact on trade and international supply chains, the Ministry of Commerce said on Thursday.“In terms of the issues and difficulties facing foreign trade companies, we will review policies in a timely manner and deal with them in a scientific and proper way,” said ministry spokeswoman Shu Jueting.How the new variant will affect China’s manufacturing sector is not yet clear,…

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China’s Covid-19 port quarantine for shipping crew stokes delays ahead of Lunar New Year

November 30, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Feeder operators at ports in southern China are extending service suspensions by at least six weeks over the Lunar New Year holiday due to strict quarantine measures for shipping crew, in a move that may further disrupt snarled supply chains, industry insiders say.Feeder operators own medium-sized ships that transport containers between small ports and major container terminals where they are loaded onto larger vessels.Global shipping giants such as Ocean Network Express, Hapag-Lloyd and…

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China coal: Beijing blasts coal index providers as it moves to keep price within ‘reasonable range’

November 26, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Beijing is taking steps to tighten its regulations over China’s coal market amid ongoing concerns over a power shortage and rising factory-gate inflation.The nation’s top economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), recently held meetings with coal-fired power companies and economic and legal experts, soliciting suggestions for a long-term pricing mechanism.The commission first mentioned the mechanism last month, saying it was intended to keep coal-price fluctuations…

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US-China phase-one trade deal gets a reality check after nearly two years

November 21, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]As the two-year deadline for the phase-one trade deal between the world’s two largest economies is approaching, all eyes are on the next step.Signed in January 2020, the deal was considered a ceasefire agreement between China and the United States following a two-year trade war that originated from a Section 301 investigation by the US in 2018, when Washington said Beijing had engaged in unfair trade practices such as intellectual property (IP) theft and granted excessive government subsidies…

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China trade: surging export prices mask falling volumes, but turning point looms as Christmas orders dry up

November 10, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China’s exports have continued to defy expectations and warnings of a slowdown amid coronavirus outbreaks, power shortages and rising shipping costs, but data has shown that while export values have increased, volumes of many goods have not.Murmurings of slower export growth started in June due to evaporating positive comparison-base effects from previous months and the reopening of alternative overseas manufacturing bases, but after a month of softer shipments in July, growth has since gone…

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China shipping: from its monopoly on containers, to its critical role in the global supply chain

November 9, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]How important is shipping to China’s economy?As the world’s largest exporter and producer of industrial goods, China’s exports contributed to 39.18 per cent of the country’s GDP in 2020. Meanwhile, the country is also the world’s second-largest importer, after the United States.Foreign trade inevitably has to rely on transport. Among the various transportation methods, maritime transport, or shipping, is the most important for China. Shipping is also closely related to the global economy, as…

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China must ease small firms’ tax burden amid ‘downward pressure’ on the economy, says Premier Li Keqiang

November 3, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Premier Li Keqiang has said China needs to lower fees and taxes for businesses, particularly struggling small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), to alleviate fresh challenges facing the economy.“The current economy is facing new downward pressure, and more than 100 million market players are the source of confidence and resilience to stabilise economic fundamentals,” Li said during a meeting on Tuesday with China’s top market regulator, the State Administration for Market Regulation.“It is…

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How China’s property crackdown is being felt in a remote city steeped in Communist Party lore

November 2, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Though situated in China’s remote, mountainous and relatively underdeveloped southwestern Guizhou province, the city of Zunyi is not an obscure name for Chinese.The city is engraved in Communist Party history as the location where Mao Zedong was elected leader during the Long March in 1935. It is also the home of Mao-tai, China’s national liquor.But in recent months the city has gained prominence for another reason: it has borne the brunt of Beijing’s attempts to rein in the country’s red-hot…

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China ramps up electricity imports from North Korea, Russia, Myanmar in bid to ease power crisis

October 22, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China has ramped up its electricity imports from North Korea, Russia and Myanmar amid its worst power shortage in decades, customs data shows, although the increases do not offer an immediate solution to the nationwide crisis.Imports from North Korea increased by 62 per cent to 35,974 megawatt-hours (MWh) in September compared with the same period last year and by 37 per cent year on year to 291 gigawatt-hours (GWh) in the first three quarters of 2021.September’s imports were valued at US$1.5…

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Shipping container prices tumble for first time this year as China’s Christmas exporting season slows

October 20, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Shipping container prices have declined for the first time this year after skyrocketing to historic highs as China’s Christmas exporting season slows, creating a temporary respite for exporters.The average sale price of a 40-foot container in China has plunged by 22.5 per cent since the end of September, to US$6,598 this week, according to Container xChange, an online platform for the leasing and trading of shipping containers.For container leasing, Container xChange’s data shows that the…

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How China’s power crunch creates chaos, uncertainty in hardest-hit northeast rust belt

October 14, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]A decision by the regional grid operator to suddenly cut off his power late last month sent a Dandong fishmonger into a panic, mulling whether he would have to give away his seafood before it went bad.The outage was relatively brief for Mr Wang – a few hours – but for a business owner whose livelihood depends on freezers, power outages can have an immediate and dangerous impact.“I had to sell all my seafood at much lower prices on the next day,” Mr Wang lamented from his coastal hometown in the…

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China-US shipping rates begin to cool as power crisis forces production cuts, but freight costs still elevated

October 8, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]The cost of shipping between China and the United States has fallen after months of steep increases, as orders for year-end holidays slow and a power crunch in the world’s second biggest economy disrupts production of goods, new data shows.Though prices are still far higher than this time last year, costs for shipping containers have fallen by more than 51 per cent on some routes between September and October, according to freight forwarding platform Shifl.The spot rate for shipping a 40-foot…

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Xinjiang exports rattled by coronavirus outbreaks in Central Asia as risks from US sanctions loom

October 6, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]This is the third in a series of stories looking at China’s Xinjiang province and how the far-western region is coping economically under a series of US sanctions over alleged human rights violations and the widespread use of forced labour.As the manager of a cross-border logistics company at Horgos Port on the border of China’s far west Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region and Kazakhstan, Zhang Junke has been struggling with dwindling business for the past year and a half.One of his biggest…

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China’s energy curbs blunt demand for bauxite after Guinea coup stokes supply fears

September 24, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Business as usual at Guinea’s bauxite mines following a coup early this month and China’s campaign to reduce domestic energy consumption have mitigated concerns about supply shortages of the mineral – a key ingredient in aluminium, analysts say.The tonnage of ships calling at Guinean ports for bauxite exports remained stable in the first three weeks of September, dropping only two per cent compared to the same period in August, said a report published by Clarksons Research on Thursday.The…

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China’s busiest container-shipping ports in Shanghai, Ningbo begin to reopen after Typhoon Chanthu

September 14, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Terminals at two of the world’s busiest container ports began resuming operations on Tuesday after briefly shutting down due to Typhoon Chanthu, but analysts warn that delays and disruptions remain a broader concern in the global supply chain.Flights and rail services in Shanghai also gradually started returning to normal on Tuesday, local authorities said.Both Shanghai Port and Ningbo-Zhoushan Port are now handling laden containers at several terminals, according to official statements.Chanthu…

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China may turn to Australia for bauxite after Guinea coup stokes fears of global supply disruptions, say analysts

September 7, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]China, both a producer and major consumer of aluminium, could turn to Australia for more supplies of the key raw material bauxite after a coup in Guinea threatened to disrupt global supply, analysts said.Guinea and Australia are two of the world’s biggest bauxite producers, but the military takeover in the West African country has raised the risk of interruptions to production capacity and supply chains.Prices of aluminium on London Metal Exchange surged to US$2,745 a tonne on Monday, hitting a…

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China anti-corruption probe finds local governments are still ‘fabricating’ economic data

September 3, 2021

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Further cases of economic data fraud by local governments in China have been reported by the country’s top anti-corruption agency following a two-year investigation.The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) conducted two separate rounds of statistical inspections, covering 19 of mainland China’s 31 provincial jurisdictions, as well as nine departments within the State Council.A report published on Thursday by the official newspaper of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the…

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