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Speed Boat Carrying Illegal Border Crossers to Guangdong Sinks [UPDATED]

Posted: 09/10/2014 7:27 am

speed boatA speed boat illegally entering into Mainland China has sunk off the coast of Zhuhai. One person has been rescued but nine remain missing, reports CCTV.

The ship sank sometime around four o’clock yesterday morning (September 9) about a nautical mile off Zhuhai’s shore in Guangdong Province. Nine people on board were passengers, while one was the ship’s captain.

The sole survivor said everyone aboard the ship were mainland Chinese, and they were trying to get themselves from Macau back to the Mainland. Only six out of the ten people aboard were wearing a life preserver at the time of the ship’s sinking.

The boat is registered in Hong Kong, and is a seven meter-long watercraft.

An ongoing search for the missing people includes the border police, the fisheries department, the marine police, and the No. 1 contingent of the South China Sea Aviation support unit.

UPDATE 10:46am September 9: As of 10am this morning, there has been no new developments to this story, Xinhuanet reports.

Photo: taopic


Labor Strife in Macau as City Faces Growing Political Unrest

Posted: 08/27/2014 11:05 am

macau casino protestThe latest of a series of protests by casino workers in Macau not only appears to display a greater willingness to demand better working conditions, but also a growing political awareness as the former colony looks for answers on how to improve governance.

On Monday, more than 1,000 casino workers marched through Macau streets stopping at some of the territory’s biggest casinos such as Sands China, Galaxy Entertainment Group and SJM Holdings. They are demanding a 10 percent pay increase for all workers below the manager’s level, a restriction on hiring foreign workers, and an extension of the smoking ban to cover the entire casino.

The demonstration is said to be the largest of the seven protests held by casino workers this year. The largest on record took place last October with some 3,000 angry workers.

The protests are happening against a backdrop of some political unrest in the city. Over the weekend, an unofficial referendum was scheduled to be held on democracy, one similar to the referendum held by Hong Kong earlier this year. However, local police partially shut down the polls, even though participants could still vote online.

The unofficial referendum poses two questions: whether there should be universal suffrage for the 2019 election for chief executive, and if voters have confidence in Fernando Chui, the current chief executive and only candidate on the ballot for this Sunday’s vote.

For their part, the casino workers union says it is strongly behind the unofficial referendum, which has so far received 6,000 votes. In comparison, Hong Kong, which has a much larger population, received 800,000 in its referendum earlier this summer.

Photo: BBC


Travel From Guangzhou to Macau By Helicopter In Only 45 Minutes

Posted: 08/11/2014 4:48 pm

helicopters baiyun airport There are already a number of ways for people to navigate between cities in the Pearl River Delta. But soon, there will be one more choice for those wanting to hit the baccarat tables in Macau: a Guangzhou-Macau helicopter service.

The new service is expected to begin at the end of September, reports iFeng, connecting Guangzhou Baiyun Airport with the Macau International Airport. The whole journey is only 45 minutes.

As the helicopter will fly at a height of only 300 meters or lower, sight-seeing will be spectacular (provided there isn’t much pollution). Passengers will see great views of Baiyun Mountain, the Pearl River, the the coast down to Zhuhai.

The chartered flights are to be operated by Nanfang Airlines Corporation using helicopters from the Pearl River Helicopter Company. Future planned routes include flights to Hong Kong, Shunde, Dongguan, and Yangjiang.

The cost of ticket has yet to be determined.

Photo: cnr


Shenzhen Sex Trafficking Ring Was Sending Girls to Work in Indonesia

Posted: 07/10/2014 9:34 am

A Shenzhen court has begun hearing the case of a sophisticated sex trafficking ring that saw women recruited in China before being sent to Indonesia to work as prostitutes, Shenzhen Business Daily reported.

The six-member ring is accused of sending the girls to work at  Malioboro Hotel and Sumo bar in Jarkata. Lin Zipin from Guangdong is accused of being responsible for picking up the women at the local airport, arranging their accommodation, visa applications, financing, doctor visits and shopping. Each month, Lin earned a profit of 8 million Indonesian Rupiah (RMB 4,253).

Guan Haiquan from Macau had the same responsibilities as Lin and was allegedly reaping HK$10,000 (RMB 7,998) each month.

The prosecutors said Lin, Guan and Huang acted in disregard of the law and engaged in organising and running a prostitution ring abroad. They said the three should be held accountable. Three other suspects were accomplices in the case, responsible for helping to recruit young girls and their cross-country transportation.

Lin confessed his crimes at the court, but said he did not know women were being sent to work as prostitutes.

Photo: AFP


Six Year-old Panda Xinxin Dies in Macau

Posted: 06/23/2014 4:36 pm

xinxin panda death macau chinaXinxin the great panda has died in Macau, China. She was six years-old.

A gift of the central Chinese government, Xinxin arrived in Macau on December 18, 2010 in a well-publicized campaign that brought her over in a custom-designed Air China passenger jet. There, Xinxin was a regular fixture at the Great Panda Hall in the Shipaiwan Wilderness Park where she delighted many visitors wanting to catch a glimpse of China’s national/endangered animal.

Xinxin is survived by her partner that was also gifted to Macau, Kaikai. With their names spoken together as “Kaikai Xinxin”, the couple’s name becomes the Chinese word for “happiness”.

It was during a routine checkup in May that staff at the panda center discovered Xinxin was suffering from a kidney problem. Then, as if to exacerbate the situation, Xinxin entered the all-important “breeding season” two weeks ago. At this time, Xinxin became tempermental and lost her appetite.

At a press conference held late last night by the the general office of the Special Administration Region of Macau, it was announced that Xinxin had passed away at 8:18pm on June 22 from a kidney failure.

Estimates to the remaining number of pandas in the world range from 3,000 to 1,600.



Mainland Prostitutes Rounded Up in Macau

Posted: 06/20/2014 2:09 pm

macau prostitution bustA late night raid by the Macau vice squad on June 19 has resulted in the capture of 29 mainland women suspected of engaging in prostitution on Jinguang Boulevard in Liudang District, reports Y Net.

Two mainland men were also detained in the raid, and are suspected of profiting from prostitution.

Ever since a crackdown on prostitution in Dongguan began last February resulting in over 3,000 people arrested, there has been an exodus of sex workers traveling to Shenzhen and beyond.

macau prostitution bustmacau prostitution bustmacau prostitution bustmacau prostitution bustmacau prostitution bust


[h/t @missxq]

Photos: Y Net


Macau Tightens Visa Rules For Mainland Visitors

Posted: 06/19/2014 5:01 pm

macau customsIf you’re a Chinese mainlander and want to go gamble in Macau, one surefire way to circumvent existing entry requirements is by entering as a transit visitor on your way to a third country—but actually have no intention of going anywhere else but the craps table.

Sorry, Danny Ocean with Chinese characteristics: the gig is up.

Macau has just announced changes to its entry requirements to deter mainland high-rollers from coming to the territory. Starting on July 1, mainland visitors holding a Chinese passport in transit will only be allowed to stay a maximum of five days, down from an original seven, according to Bloomberg.

READ: Guangdong Residents Can Now Visit
Hong Kong and Macau with Their Fingerprints

However, some critics of the plan point out that the change won’t actually succeed at what it’s supposed to accomplish. Jose Pereira Coutinho, a directly elected legislator in the 33-member Legislative Assembly, said, ”It won’t help resolve the existing problem for some mainland visitors to travel to Macau without traveling to another destination.” In other words, they can still get a lot of gambling done in the new five-day period.

The last time Macau made changes to its entry requirements was in 2008 when it shortened the maximum stay from 14 days to seven. As well, mainland tourists that re-enter Macau within 30 days of their previous stay will only be allowed to stay one day, down from two days.

Additionally, China UnionPay has promised to clamp down on illegal payments made with handheld devices in Macau gambling establishments, an amount analysts say was worth billions last year.


Photo: deltabridges


Guangdong Residents Can Now Visit Hong Kong and Macau With Their Fingerprints

Posted: 05/20/2014 8:00 am

Guangdong is issuing a new generation of Hong Kong and Macau travel passes for its residents. From today onwards, residents can apply for an e-pass which is expected to reduce the time required to cross the border through the use of self-serve e-channels, Yangcheng Evening News reported.

Different from the traditional paper booklets, the new e-pass is the size of an ID card. Residents can cross the border in about 10 seconds by pressing one’s finger on a fingerprint scanner. About 30% of the self-serve e-channels have been installed and finished testing, the report said.

The new travel pass (left)

Policies regarding the HK and Macau travel pass still remain the same, and so do the fees. The old paper booklet is eligible for use as long as it it within the expiration date, the report said.

The e-pass for adults is valid for 10 years from the start of the issue day, and for children under age 16, the e-pass is valid for five years. When applying for the new e-pass, applicants have to submit finger print samples. Application for the new travel pass takes seven working days at a local public security immigration office and upgrading the old travel pass to the new version takes 10 working days.

Home page and content page photo credit: Yangcheng Evening News


First New Ferry Arrives in Shenzhen to Take Passengers Around the PRD

Posted: 05/13/2014 9:41 am

peng xing ferry shenzhen hong kong macau shipShenzhen is now home to a new ferry, the 200-passenger Peng Xing 15, as made by AFAI Southern Shipyard, reports MarineLog.

Designed by CoCo Yachts B.V. of Heukelum, Netherlands and attaining a contract speed of 31.5 knots, the Peng Xing will be joined by its sister ferry currently being shipped over. An order of another three CoCo ferries of a slightly different version has already been placed, making a total of five ships to join the passenger line.

peng xing ferry shenzhen hong kong macau shipThe Peng Xing line of ferries is run by Chu Kong Passenger Transport which operates ferries with ports in Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Macau, and various cities in Guangdong Province.

We imagine additional ferries may improve service and travel times, but details haven’t been released at this time regarding destinations and scheduling. Of note, however, are the two VIP cabins on the upper deck that can allow for five passengers each; maybe some of you will get to travel across the ocean in snazzy VIP style.

Photos: Marine Log, World Maritime News


HK-Macau-PRD Free Trade Zone One Step Closer to Reality

Posted: 05/4/2014 3:15 pm

Today in “bun in the oven” news: A proposal for a free trade zone that encompasses Hong Kong, Macau and parts of Guangdong Province via the Closer Economic Partnership Arrangement (CEPA) is now under revision by some 28 ministries and commissions after being approved by the central government, reports Want China Times.

First proposed back in February of this year, the Guangdong free trade zone will unify disparate parts of the Pearl River Delta in a total area that is much larger than the free trade zone in Shanghai. Planned for economic amalgamation are the Shenzhen Qianhai Special Economic Zone, the Guangzhou Nansha Special Economic Zone, the Zhuhai Hengqin Special Economic Zone, Hong Kong and Macau.

Another defining characteristic of this proposed free trade zone are the individual characteristics of each of the markets. Under this arrangement, Guangdong Province may seek gains from the much freer markets of Hong Kong and Macau. According to the Index of Economic Freedom, Hong Kong has been rated the world’s most free market economy for 19 consecutive years, while Macau lags behind at 26th position. In comparison, the market in mainland China ranks world-wide at 136.

Guangdong Governor Zhu Xiaodan said that the new free trade zone will focus on liberalizing trade and initialize a system of cooperation in the high-end service industry.

According to Lin Jiang, dean of the public finance and taxation department of Lingnan College at Sun Yat-sen University in Guangzhou, the focus on liberalizing services through trade will set Guangdong’s free trade zone apart from the China Pilot Free Trade Zone in Shanghai.

A shift to embrace more free trade zones will be an ongoing trend if Standard Charter’s appraisal of China as the first “true mega-trader” since 1800′s Britain is apt.

However, the proposal for this free trade zone are expected to take years to formalize. Meanwhile, anyone wanting to purchase the newly unbanned Xbox One will have to go to Shanghai’s free trade zone starting this September.

Photo: Xinhua

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