The Sinocism China Newsletter – November 30, 2015

Bill Bishop , December 1, 2015 11:08am


1. IMF Approves Reserve-Currency Status for China’s Yuan – Bloomberg Business The addition will take effect Oct. 1, 2016, with the yuan having a 10.92 percent weighting in the basket, the IMF said. Weightings will be 41.73 percent for the dollar, 30.93 percent for the euro, 8.33 percent for the yen and 8.09 percent for the British pound. The dollar currently accounts for 41.9 percent of the basket, while the euro accounts for 37.4 percent, the pound 11.3 percent and the yen 9.4 percent.  //  so not actually added until 10.1.2016, ten months from now. Will China dare devalue the RMB in any material way between now and the addition, as many bears are hoping/predicting/betting on?

Related IMF Lifts Chinese Yuan to Elite Lending-Reserve Currency Status – WSJ U.S. officials privately question the yuan’s ripeness for reserve-currency status but also see the step as aiding efforts by reformers within the People’s Bank of China to liberalize the country’s economy. The U.S. Treasury issued a short two-line statement saying it supported the IMF staff recommendation to include the yuan. After the IMF’s announcement, China’s central bank pledged to accelerate efforts to overhaul the country’s financial system and further open its markets.

Related 央行回应人民币入篮 详细解读SDR七大疑问 PBoC Statement  //  中国人民银行欢迎基金组织执董会将人民币纳入SDR货币篮子的决定,这是对中国经济发展和改革开放成果的肯定。中方对基金组织管理层和工作人员在SDR审查过程中的辛勤工作以及广大成员国的支持表示赞赏。人民币加入SDR有助于增强SDR的代表性和吸引力,完善现行国际货币体系,对中国和世界是双赢的结果。人民币加入SDR也意味着国际社会对中国在国际经济金融舞台上发挥积极作用有更多期许,中方将继续坚定不移地推进全面深化改革的战略部署,加快推动金融改革和对外开放,为促进全球经济增长、维护全球金融稳定和完善全球经济治理做出积极贡献。

RelatedWall Street Group Pushes Trading of China’s Yuan in U.S. – WSJ Mr. Bloomberg, founder of the financial-data and information company Bloomberg LP and former New York City mayor, will chair a new working group that hopes to build a framework for the trading and clearing of China’s yuan in the U.S. The group will also reunite two of the government’s most prominent officials during the financial crisis, former Treasury secretaries Henry Paulson and Timothy Geithner, who will be co-chairmen. Mary Schapiro, who led the Securities and Exchange Commission, will serve as vice chairman.

2. Improper Readings of “Improper Discussion” — Medium translation of this article 人民日报热点辨析:认清“妄议”的错误和危害 from People’s Daily last week (and #3 in yesterday’s Essential Eight ) on clearing up the meaning of Article 46 of the new Party Discipline regulations about “improper discussion of central party policies 妄议中央. Article 46 should not be underestimated // Second, [improper discussion] weakens the Party’s authority and its leadership position. Some people, as they implement the policies of the centre, do so at a discount, fashioning their own alternatives, so that what we have are “policies above and countermeasures below” (上有政策, 下有对策), and disconnects from top to bottom that thwart [policy] decrees. This damages the authority and governing ability of the central Party. In fact, all of these [trends] have a great deal to do with the improper discussion of the policies of the central Party.

3. Xi sends strong signals at Paris climate talks – Xinhua Chinese President Xi Jinping on Monday sent strong signals at the ongoing Paris climate change conference, warning against mentality of zero-sum game, expressing resolve in fulfilling Beijing’s commitments and showing willingness to advance international cooperation. Xi made the remarks in a speech at the opening ceremony of the two-week Paris gathering, officially called the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. // 习近平出席气候变化巴黎大会开幕式并发表重要讲话  wonder what kind of briefings he is getting on the current Beijing smog storm

4. Following U.S. indictments, Chinese military scaled back hacks on American industry – The Washington Post “The big picture is that from 2014 on, the administration pursued a much more direct and coercive approach with China, and it has produced results over time,” said Evan S. Medeiros, a former senior director for Asian affairs on the National Security Council…Prime among the other government hacking organizations is the Ministry of State Security. The MSS, which also employs elite contractors as hackers, is more skilled than the PLA and better able to hide telltale digital trails, analysts say. It is particularly suited to carry out economic espionage, some say, because it has direct channels to state-owned enterprises.  // nice timing for some self-serving leaks to the Washington Post, on eve of cyber crime talks in DC?

Related China, U.S. high-level cyber crime talks to begin Tuesday | Reuters China’s Public Security Minister Guo Shengkun is in Washington through Sunday and will meet U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson, Chinese state media reported. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch is also expected to take part in the discussions.

5. Xi’s African Tour Highlights China’s Expanding Security Role – Bloomberg Business Chinese President Xi Jinping begins a five-day African visit on Tuesday that he’ll use to showcase China’s expanding role as a protector of regional security, as well as a provider of infrastructure and consumer of resources. China has pledged $100 million of military aid for the African Union, sent an infantry battalion to support peacekeeping efforts in South Sudan and deployed frigates to fight piracy off the Somali coast, leading the country to consider building its first overseas naval resupply station in Djibouti.

Related The China Africa Relationship: Crossroads or Cliff? | A ChinaFile Conversation With Cobus van Staden, Eric Olander, Huang Hongxiang, Yu-Shan Wu, Lina Benabdallah, Kemo Bosielo so far

6. 成都律师出国需提前3日报司法局和律协,律师质疑无法律依据法治中国澎湃新闻-The Paper ThePaper reports that the Chengdu Judicial Bureau issues rule that Chengdu lawyers must notify it at least three days before leaving the country to participate in exchanges, forums, seminars…Lawyers claim rule has no basis in law// 律师出国、参加各类交流活动和论坛研讨会,应提前3日报司法行政机关和律协——日前,成都司法局出台新规,对律师活动作出上述要求。这瞬间在律师界引发反弹:多名律师在接受澎湃新闻(采访时表示,该规定并无法律依据,且有司法行政机关“扩权”之嫌。

7. 400,000 people to move to suburbs amid Beijing’s administrative shift – Xinhua Tongzhou housing prices been soaring, government imposed very strict purchase restrictions a few months ago // Beijing will move many of its city administration offices out of the city center to the eastern suburb of Tongzhou, with “substantial progress” by 2017, the Beijing Municipal Commission of Urban Planning announced on Monday. Building a new municipal subsidiary administrative center in Tongzhou, about 40 minutes drive from the city center, will draw approximately 400,000 urban residents from city center to the suburban district in the future, the commission said. // 北京行政副中心将吸引40万人转移

8. 重访“艾滋病第一村”:“年轻人还要活得更好”综合新京报网 20年前,因有偿献血引发感染疫情的上蔡县文楼村,一时成为“艾滋村”的代名词。今天是第28个世界艾滋病日,新京报记者通过重访文楼,对话防艾领域的专家,除了呈现文楼的变化,也试图梳理当下中国艾滋病防治出现的新问题。 // For World AIDS Day a reporter from The Beijing News returns to Wenlou Village, known as the “No 1 AIDS village” for the AIDS epidemic that ravaged it in wake of rampant blood selling.

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Bill Bishop

Author and curator of the daily Sinocism newsletter.