Why Beijing is trying to tame China’s runaway stock markets


China’s stock markets marked their first decline in eight days on Friday, ending a more than weeklong run that saw some stocks reach multiyear highs and featured record-breaking initial public offerings.

Bullish encouragement from Chinese state media kicked off the mainland’s stock market rally. State media outlets then tempered their tone late this week in an attempt to rein in speculation, telling investors to think about the long term, days after predicting a “healthy” bull market.

China’s securities regulator also issued a note of caution on Wednesday when it warned investors of risks in margin financing, a practice where brokers lend money to investors to buy stocks.

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The regulator listed 258 margin lending groups that it said were illegal and told investors not to use such financing. Margin financing is rising at the fastest rate since 2015, according to Bloomberg data, and illegal margin lending is seen as a primary reason for China’s 2015 stock market crash.

Some analysts said the initial bullishness from state news outlets was to help boost consumer spending and China’s economic recovery from the coronavirus slowdown, the Financial Times reported.

But the frenzy of trading this week raised fears of a repeat of the stock market bubble that formed in late 2014 and burst in June 2015.

State media had also encouraged bullish investors in the run that preceded the 2015 crash, when the Shanghai and Shenzhen stock exchanges fell more than 40% in the following months. Altogether, the collapse wiped $5 trillion in market cap off China’s exchanges. Beijing ousted the head of the securities regulatory commission, on whose watch the crash occurred, in February 2016.

Stock markets in China are dominated by millions of individual investors. They account for 70% of stock transactions across China’s exchanges and are known for sometimes contributing to market volatility by trading on rumor and a “get rich quick” mentality. Since June 30, China’s stock market has added more than $1 trillion in value.

The Shanghai Composite rose 16.5% for eight days straight on Thursday. Even with Friday’s dip, it’s still up 17.8% since its June low. (The Nasdaq is up 8.4% for the same time period). Friday’s trading was likely also dampened by the U.S. government’s decision to sanction Chinese officials over alleged human rights abuses against the Uyghur ethnic minority group, a move that will ratchet up U.S.-China tensions. China has already said it would retaliate.

The week’s market frenzy led to some remarkable listings. One Chinese tech firm, QuantumCTek, surged 924% on its trading debut in Shanghai on Thursday, setting a record for the largest first-day jump of any Chinese IPO. The Star board, which QuantumCTek debuted on, has no trading limits on the first five days of a company’s IPO.

Hopeful economic recovery data coming out of China also buoyed investor confidence this week. China’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) rose for a fourth straight month in June, according to official data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics.

Manufacturing PMI, which represents factory activity, is taken as an important indicator of economic performance. The figure plunged 14.3 percentage points in February during nationwide coronavirus shutdowns.

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Five ways Hong Kong has changed under China’s security law


Beijing’s new nationwide stability law for Hong Kong is the most radical change in how the semi-autonomous metropolis is run because it was handed back to China by Britain in 1997.

China’s authoritarian leaders say the powers will restore security soon after a 12 months of professional-democracy protests and will not stifle freedoms.

Demonstrators protest in opposition to China’s safety law.

AAP

But it has by now despatched worry coursing as a result of a town made use of to staying equipped to speak overtly and fundamentally altered the city’s relationship to the two Beijing and the outside the house world.

Authorized firewall toppled

A vital pillar of Hong Kong’s achievement has been an impartial judiciary, insulated from mainland China’s social gathering-managed courts and their conviction fees of around 99 percent.

That lawful firewall has now appear down.

The regulation grants China jurisdiction in some national security situations and lets mainland safety brokers to set up shop brazenly in the city for the first time. Those people staff are not sure by local regulations.

Local law enforcement have been granted broad surveillance powers that do not involve judicial oversight even though trials involving condition insider secrets can be held at the rear of closed doorways with out juries.

China also statements universal jurisdiction. That could make it dangerous for Beijing critics, such as foreigners, to travel to Hong Kong or by way of its airport.

Central govt command tightened

Hong Kong ordinarily passes its possess legislation through a legislature.

But the countrywide stability regulation was published in Beijing and imposed on the metropolis — its contents kept solution right up until it was enacted on Tuesday evening.

It establishes supremacy more than the Essential Regulation, the mini-structure that grants the city particular freedoms as nicely as judicial and legislative autonomy.

Passersby walk past bricks that have been dug up and laid out on the street as a way to slow down police during demonstrations.

Passersby stroll past bricks that have been dug up and laid out on the avenue as a way to sluggish down law enforcement during demonstrations.

AAP

The law states that if there is a discrepancy concerning the two methods, China’s law normally takes precedence.

It also embeds mainland officials in Hong Kong’s federal government.

A new nationwide safety commission is headed by the head of Beijing’s Liaison Office environment and staffed by both equally mainland and local officials.

Short article 22 of the Standard Legislation states the central federal government are unable to interfere in the running of Hong Kong.

But Beijing has designed distinct national protection trumps that and is the central government’s purview.

Slogans outlawed

Beijing and Hong Kong’s government mentioned the new powers would only concentrate on a “extremely compact minority”.

But it has quickly turn into distinct specified political views, even if expressed peacefully, are now illegal — specially phone calls for independence or autonomy.

Riot police officers arrest a protester.

Riot police officers arrest a protester.

AAP

The initial arrests less than the new law arrived on Wednesday, just about all of them men and women who had been in possession of flags or leaflets advertising independence.

On Thursday the authorities verified that a person of the city’s most popular protest chants — “Liberate Hong Kong, revolution of our moments” was now banned.

For some the phrase signifies legitimate aspirations to break up Hong Kong from China.

But for lots of other individuals it is a much more basic cry for democracy and an expression of soaring disappointment with Beijing’s rule.

Protest partitions scrubbed

The affect of the regulation on people’s speech has been noticeable each digitally and physically.

Some places to eat and organizations have taken out political shows following warnings from law enforcement. Officials have been filmed scraping specified phrases and phrases from a protest wall at a university campus.

Across town, posters and phrases are currently being eliminated from “Lennon Walls” that first sprung up during past year’s professional-democracy protests.

Welcoming a prepare for risk-free haven for Hong Kong inhabitants

Some Hong Kongers are acquiring resourceful, changing outlawed slogans with altered variations or puns that only trace at politics in a bid to stay forward of the new legal guidelines.

On the net, folks have scrubbed chat groups and anonymised their social media accounts — or deleted them entirely.

Politicians flee, shut down events

For decades Hong Kong was a area to which men and women fled when they feared persecution on the authoritarian mainland.

Now it is a location men and women flee from.

Distinguished democracy activist Nathan Law announced on Thursday night that he had gone abroad to an undisclosed place mainly because of the law.

Anti-riot police disperse a crowd of protesters.

Anti-riot law enforcement disperse a group of protesters.

AAP

He and a group of fellow young activists disbanded their pro-democracy social gathering Demosisto two days earlier, fearing prosecution, even however it does not advocate Hong Kong independence.

“As I search down at the magnificence of Hong Kong from the airplane, this image has turn into just one unforgettable scene in my thoughts,” he wrote.

“I hope the day will appear when I can return to Hong Kong all over again and I can even now be that young person who hasn’t neglected about his initial aspirations.”

Other groups who additional brazenly advocate autonomy for the city also introduced they were being shutting down.



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China’s thirst for beer proving a win for Canada in barley feud


China’s thirsty beer markets are fuelling a surge in Canadian barley shipments amid the Asian nation’s feud with Australia.

Canadian shipments of barley to China rose in May as the Asian nation slapped anti-dumping duties on the grain from Australia, its top supplier. Canada exported 175,500 tons of barley to China in May, up 38 per cent from a year earlier, according to the Canadian Grain Commission.

The number of acres allocated to barley in Canada is set to rise to the highest in more than a decade in 2020 and any additional output could be absorbed by demand from China’s beer and livestock industries, said Errol Anderson, president of ProMarket Communications in Calgary. Canada is one of the world’s major barley producers and among the top exporters.

“Unfortunately, what’s happening to Australia will benefit Canada,” Anderson said by phone. “If China comes into the market, really those additional acres will be absorbed easily.”

Canada, the second-largest malt-barley exporter to China, had already been trying to gain a bigger share of China’s beer market from Australia. The northern nation’s barley has higher protein than crops from Australia and that quality helps in fermentation to give beer more body and foam retention.

Canadian efforts to ship more barley overseas have been successful, even before China’s tiff with Australia, said Tom Steve, the general manager of Alberta Barley. Production cuts in Australia due to drought in past years have helped Canadians boost shipments to China to about 1.5 million tons a year, he said.

“The challenge for us is to try and secure those markets longer-term,” Steve said.

It’s not just Canada that’s eyeing China’s need for barley. Exports from France are poised to benefit from the Australian tariffs, and consultant Strategie Grains boosted its outlook for this season’s European Union barley shipments by 6 per cent in a June report, citing higher projected sales to China. There have been multiple shipments of feed and malting barley loaded from France and destined for China in the past few weeks.

Prices in Europe and Canada are firm as a result. Feed barley in Saskatchewan has risen more than 8 per cent since May and is currently at the highest price since July 2019, according to data from Farmco.

The potential for increased barley shipments comes at the same time as simmering tensions between Canada and China shrink demand for another major Canadian crop. Last year, China suspended the licences of two major Canadian canola shippers, citing pest and quarantine concerns — though the move was widely interpreted as retaliation over the arrest of a Huawei Technologies Co. executive in Vancouver. Canada is the world’s top grower and exporter of canola, an oilseed used in everything from salad dressings to deep-frying.

“They haven’t picked on barley for politics, whereas canola is on the hit list,” Anderson said.

Bloomberg.com



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How China’s Virgin Australia sold out the national interest


A story involving an aviation project backed by Chinese companies was shut down after media interference by the NSW Government, writes Anthony Klan.

VIRGIN AUSTRALIA, under current CEO Paul Scurrah, ran an elaborate scheme on behalf of its owners to mislead the Australian public and the nation’s politicians in a secret operation – which included aggressively muzzling the media – to set up a massive infrastructure project one hour’s flight time north of Sydney.

The 90%-plus foreign-owned Virgin Australia, on behalf of its two Chinese owners, the notorious HNA Group and Nanshan, who own and control at least 46% of the company, actively masked their activities from both the NSW and federal governments in a move which also hid the operation from the public.

Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and other major corporates have refused to do business with HNA Group because of its opaque structure — they simply don’t know who they are dealing with, while Nanshan has allegedly:

‘…been at the centre of illegal land seizures, the forced demolition of homes and has used violence and intimidation against those who dared to stand in its way.’

When the secret activities of Virgin Australia were exposed, the airline, under CEO Scurrah, successfully shut down any further media coverage and lied about their activities.

Virgin Australia, in formal written responses, labelled any scrutiny of what they were up to as “xenophobic” — a notorious fall back of the Chinese Communist Party.

Major Virgin owners HNA Group – which is now 100% controlled by the Chinese Government – and Nanshan, which bought into the airline at the same time and whose owner is a long time Communist Party apparatchik, had arranged to create the nation’s biggest flight training school in Tamworth NSW.

The project was massive – far bigger than any other flight school in the nation – and the mega-project had been launched at a secretive Chinese-language only media event in Sydney.

A press statement, first published in Mandarin, announced that the project was a done deal and that the massive flight school was the first in Australia to be approved by the Chinese Communist Party.

After a contact alerted me to the story – months after the press conference – I was dumbfounded and approached Virgin Australia.

The airline denied having anything to do with the project.

This was blatantly untruthful.

One of the presenters on stage at the Sydney launch event was Virgin Australia senior executive Peter Cai.

At the time, I was working for The Australian newspaper as a long-time investigative journalist.

I was gobsmacked and knew this was a page one story.

My immediate editor agreed and everything swung into motion.

The story was placed high up on the story list to run on page one.

During the afternoon of Thursday 21 March last year, something changed dramatically.

I later learned this, at the very least, involved direct interference from the office of NSW Liberal Premier Gladys Berejiklian.

The newspaper now wanted nothing to do with the article.

Late in the evening of Thursday 21 March, deputy editor James Madden told me it was a case of there being too much news around and it was “squeezed out” of the paper.

This struck me as highly unusual.

The following morning, in the office at around 6.30 A.M., I filed the story to the online news desk.

The article had already passed the lawyers, been checked and approved by the subeditors and was ready to go.

The online editor came by my desk and asked if I was sure I wanted the article to run online — it was a very strong piece which would otherwise run very prominently in the print edition of the paper.

I responded that I was well aware of this but that the editors weren’t interested in it. I had endless other stories to work on and I wanted to move on.

The story was published online and, unsurprisingly, was a major hit.

It was shared widely and other media outlets, including Sydney radio station 2GB, jumped on the story, similarly amazed at how remarkable it was.

Prominent aviator and former chairman of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority Dick Smith called me in a rage.

He simply couldn’t believe the news. He is one of the most connected people in Australian aviation and he knew absolutely nothing about it.

Smith is not unknown for the odd bout of hyperbole, but this was something else.

There needed to be a thorough, high-level investigation and the story demanded maximum coverage.

I told him he was spot on.

I told him to call editor of The Australian, John Lehmann and to tell him exactly what he had just told me (but to keep it to himself that I had suggested doing this).

I did this because I, too, was completely dumbfounded by what was going on.

The same morning, I had put in a call to the office of Barnaby Joyce, the local federal member for New England where Tamworth sits and I had received a response back.

He was aware Virgin had planned to build a flight school at Tamworth — this was common knowledge and presented some good news for the local economy.

But despite it being in its final stages of approval, he, too, knew absolutely nothing about any involvement of major Chinese government-linked conglomerates.

This was a great new online “top” to the hugely popular and well-read story.

But not a word of it was published — and the paper hasn’t run a single word on any of it since.

The decision to not run the story had nothing to do with space.

On the morning of Friday 22 March, shortly after the piece was run online, Lehmann, on a day off, called the online desk – part of the “backbench” – and told them that not another word that I filed could be published without senior editors approving it first.

I was deeply concerned — not least because of the major concerns key security figures had repeatedly warned about regarding Chinese Communist Party interference, including in the media.

A message had been left on my desk phone. It was from Berejiklian’s office, a staffer called Miles Godfrey.

I called him back.

The conversation was circuitous and became heated. He was doing everything he could to say the information “wasn’t a story” and to play it down.

Then, at the end of the conversation, he let slip: “Well, just so you know, I’ve spoken to John Lehmann.”

I was outraged. Here was a PR guy for the NSW premier going behind my back and calling the editor directly to have my extremely important story killed. And it had worked 100%.

My immediate boss overheard our (loud) conversation. He came up to me shortly afterwards and said not to fight with Miles Godfrey as “he’s going to be your boss on Monday”.

A week later, Godfrey was deputy national chief of staff at The Australian. I spent the next two days filing and refiling, over and over, the new information and follow-up stories. I CCed every one of the paper’s editors in the exchanges, which were principally with Madden.

There was always some “problem” with the piece.

No other editor engaged. Nothing ran. I subsequently learned of even more distressing information about Chinese government links to the secret Virgin deal.

Lehmann’s The Australian refused to publish a word of it.

I continued pushing the matter for several weeks and was repeatedly attacked by my immediate editor for refusing to let the matter go.

It culminated in my resignation.

I’m raising this because ABC’s Four Corners ran a lengthy story on Virgin Australia on 29 June and didn’t once touch on any of these serious issues surrounding the company, which, right now, could not be more in the national spotlight. I found this deeply disappointing.

There is more, very serious information to come. You will find it here.

This article was originally published at AnthonyKlan.com.au and has been republished with permission.

Anthony Klan is an investigative journalist specialising in business malfeasance and government corruption. His work has sparked numerous inquiries and law reforms.

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Germany, US block China’s anti-India move at UNSC | India News


File image used for representative purpose

NEW DELHI: China is livid after the US stepped in on Wednesday evening to delay a draft press statement condemning the terrorist attack at the Karachi Stock Exchange at the UN Security Council.
The US was the second country after Germany to delay the statement, both silent expressions of solidarity with New Delhi, after the Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and later PM Imran Khan blamed India for the attack.
The press statement, drafted by China, in addition to expressing condolence and solidarity with Pakistan government, said, “The members of the Security Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organisers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Government of Pakistan and all other relevant authorities in this regard.”
China introduced the statement on Tuesday, and under a UNSC procedure, put it under “silence” until 4 pm New York time. The statement is a routine condemnation of a terror attack that is issued often by the UNSC. Under the silence procedure, if there is no objection until the deadline, it is deemed to be passed.
But Germany stepped in at 4 pm to put a delay in issuing the statement. Diplomats said Pakistan foreign minister, S M Qureshi’s statement blaming India for the attack was deemed unacceptable. The Chinese UN delegation protested vehemently, saying the clock had actually moved past 4 pm when Germany intervened. The deadline was extended until 10 am July 1.
But as the new hour approached, the US intervened also at the last moment, to stymie the issuance, calling for yet another delay.
Diplomats said the statement may finally get issued, but pushing back against China and Pakistan in the UNSC is being seen as a larger signal of global displeasure.



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Pro-democracy activists say China’s new security laws are ‘the end of Hong Kong’ as we know it


China passed a sweeping national protection law for Hong Kong on Tuesday, a historic transfer that critics and numerous western governments panic will smother the finance hub’s freedoms and hollow out its autonomy.

The laws was unanimously accepted by China’s rubber-stamp parliament on Tuesday morning, minimal more than 6 months following it was 1st unveiled, sending shockwaves by means of semi-autonomous Hong Kong and further than.

“It marks the conclude of Hong Kong that the environment understood ahead of,” well known democracy campaigner Joshua Wong tweeted as his political party Demosisto declared it was disbanding. 

“With sweeping powers and ill-outlined law, the town will flip into a #secretpolicestate.”

The United States, Britain, the European Union and the United Nations rights watchdog have all voiced fears the law could be utilised to stifle criticism of Beijing, which wields related rules on the authoritarian mainland to crush dissent. 

In an unprecedented choice, the law bypassed Hong Kong’s fractious legislature and the wording was saved magic formula from the city’s 7.5 million inhabitants.

“The countrywide protection regulation for Hong Kong was formally passed by the Nationwide People’s Congress Standing Committee right now,” the DAB, Hong Kong’s most significant pro-Beijing celebration, explained in a assertion on Tuesday welcoming the law.

A protester gestures for the duration of a rally in Hong Kong.

Getty

There was no formal announcement from Beijing on the passage of the regulation. As an alternative the information filtered out by way of pro-Beijing politicians and nearby media retailers in Hong Kong.

“We haven’t viewed the particulars… but all Hong Kong delegates firmly assistance the legislation,” Henry Tang, leader of a group of pro-institution Hong Kong figures invited to a conference at Beijing’s Liaison Workplace Tuesday afternoon, explained to reporters.

But Beijing’s opacity has infuriated some others. 

“The actuality that Hong Kong persons will only appear to know what is actually really in this new legislation right after the point is a lot more than preposterous,” Claudia Mo, an opposition lawmaker, advised AFP.

Wen Wei Po and Ta Kung Pao – two Hong Kong newspapers that serve as conduits for Beijing’s official policy – also verified the passing of the legislation, as did several local Hong Kong media outlets citing nameless sources in Beijing. 

Even as phrase filtered out that the regulation had been accredited, Hong Kongers remained in the darkish about its contents and what might now represent a criminal offense. 

At her weekly press convention on Tuesday morning, Hong Kong chief Carrie Lam – a professional-Beijing appointee – declined to comment on no matter whether the law experienced been passed or what it contained. 

“I imagine at this instant, it is not proper for me to comment on any concerns linked to the countrywide protection regulation,” she told reporters.

‘End of Hong Kong’

As section of the 1997 handover from Britain, Hong Kong was guaranteed selected freedoms – as perfectly as judicial and legislative autonomy – for 50 yrs in a deal regarded as “A single Country, Two Systems”.

The system formed the bedrock of the city’s transformation into a planet class enterprise hub, bolstered by a dependable judiciary and political freedoms unseen on the mainland. 

Critics have long accused Beijing of chipping absent at that position, but they explain the stability regulation as the most brazen move but.

A summary of the regulation released by the formal state agency Xinhua this thirty day period reported the laws would include subversion, secession, terrorism and colluding with international forces. 

China’s stability companies will be able to set up shop publicly in the town for the to start with time.  

And Beijing will have jurisdiction over some conditions, toppling the authorized firewall that has existed in between Hong Kong and the mainland’s celebration-controlled courts. 

Analysts reported that even without information the protection legislation radically restructures the romance between Beijing and Hong Kong. 

“It’s a essential modify that dramatically undermines both of those the area and worldwide community’s self-confidence in the direction of Hong Kong’s “A person State, Two Programs” product and its position as a robust fiscal centre,” Hong Kong political analyst Dixon Sing instructed AFP.

On the mainland, nationwide security guidelines are routinely made use of to jail critics, especially for the vague offence of “subversion”.

Beijing and Hong Kong’s governing administration reject these allegations. 

They have reported the regulations will only concentrate on a minority of men and women, will not hurt political freedoms in the city and will restore enterprise confidence after a calendar year of historic pro-democracy protests. 

Tens of millions took to the streets final calendar year when a smaller sized tough main of protesters regularly battled law enforcement in frequently violent confrontations that noticed additional than 9,000 arrested.

Hong Kong banned protests in current months, citing past unrest and the coronavirus pandemic, whilst neighborhood transmissions have finished.

Some western nations warned of potential repercussions in advance of the security law’s passing. 

Nevertheless several are also cautious of incurring Beijing’s wrath and dropping lucrative entry to the mainland’s huge overall economy.

“We deplore this decision,” European Council head Charles Michel informed a press meeting Tuesday.

“This legislation threats very seriously undermining the substantial diploma of autonomy of Hong Kong,” Michel reported in comments recurring by European Commission head Ursula von der Leyen.

Chris Patten, the previous British governor of the territory, claimed in a statement that the choice marked “the end of just one-place, two-devices.” 

Washington – which has embarked on a trade war with China – has said the safety law suggests Hong Kong no more time enjoys ample autonomy from the mainland to justify unique status. 

In a largely symbolic go, the United States on Monday ended delicate defence exports to Hong Kong around the law.

China claimed it would acquire unspecified “countermeasures” in response.

Britain experienced reported it was willing to deliver a “pathway to citizenship” for millions of Hong Kongers if the safety regulation went in advance.



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China’s financial system is running out of room


Sichuan Trust’s investors poured billions into “trust of trust” products that are packages of corporate loans, stocks and bonds. Many of the underlying assets started to turn risky, and the firm needed new buyers to repay the old. Half of the products are supposed to mature this year, and another 12.3 billion yuan by 2022.

Angry mum and dad investors are up in arms because ultimately there is an implicit expectation that someone needs to return their money. Any social unrest when consumer credit is souring fast and disposable incomes aren’t rising could make a financial problem larger, and beyond the ability of regulators to contain. Households have poured money into savings deposits in recent months. Clamping down further on better-yielding alternatives and arbitrage risks hitting asset prices of stocks, bonds and other products that could force the vast network of non-bank financial institutions and small banks to recoil, leaving individuals in the red.

It’s unclear whether authorities can afford another rescue without acknowledging the rules aren’t working.

There’s no doubt that certain types of illicit shadow banking activities have been washed out by Beijing’s crackdown. As a whole, assets have contracted, but still stand at 59 trillion yuan. Banks’ off-balance-sheet assets funded by various investment management products have risen after an initial dip. That’s primarily because savers need somewhere to put their money; officials know that.

Beijing has been here before. In 2013, the failure of a high-yielding wealth management product set off protests in Shanghai. In 2016, crowds picketed government offices, demanding back their lost investments after similar debacles. Regulators moved to tighten rules around these gray products, often sold with little disclosure or oversight.

This time, tightening the noose isn’t an option. A closer look at the rules shows authorities know they can’t get their arms around the problems so easily. The various regulations have slack on the margins: The timeline for putting them in place is flexible and wealth management products can continue to invest in so-called non-standard credit assets, within limits. Meanwhile, several were recently reclassified into structural deposits that have become another target.

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One way for Beijing to manage this is to eventually bail out aggrieved savers. But the pressure on state coffers is only rising. It’s unclear whether authorities can afford another rescue without acknowledging the rules aren’t working. An alternative is to find different places for investors to put their money, as seen in attempted reform of capital markets.The most likely option – and a setback – would be to loosen the rules or delay implementation in the name of fighting COVID-19. It may buy social peace. But take that route, and the road to deleveraging will be a long one.

Anjani Trivedi is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering industrial companies in Asia. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal.

Bloomberg



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Hong Kong police ban protest against China’s controversial national security law

Hong Kong law enforcement on Saturday banned a key demonstration from China’s planned nationwide security legislation for the town which critics anxiety would smother the financial hub’s treasured freedoms, organisers claimed.

The Civil Human Legal rights Entrance (CHRF) reported the force experienced turned down its apps for rallies on 1 July, the 23rd anniversary of the former British colony’s handover to China.

Police cited a possibility of violence and stated the gatherings and march would “pose a significant danger to general public health and fitness” because of to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The pro-democracy group CHRF, which was accountable for some of previous year’s unparalleled million-people demonstrations, reported they would attractiveness the selection.

The semi-autonomous city has been convulsed by a 12 months of enormous and typically violent rallies that began with an ultimately aborted prison extradition invoice but morphed into a well-liked contact for democracy and police accountability.

In Could, Beijing introduced a draft countrywide safety law – which will bypass Hong Kong’s legislature – to tackle “terrorism” and “separatism” in a restless town it now regards as a direct countrywide security threat. 

The legislation would enforce punishment for subversion and other offences in Hong Kong, but critics see it as possible knock-out blow for freedoms and autonomy liked by the metropolis.

US President Donald Trump’s administration stated Friday it was proscribing visas for a variety of Chinese officials for infringing on the autonomy of Hong Kong, as Congress seeks tougher sanctions.

The Chinese embassy in Washington claimed “no a person has any authorized grounds or right to make irresponsible opinions on Hong Kong affairs”.

EU also warned China it would face “really destructive consequences” if it pressed forward with the new legislation.

The legislation is envisioned to be voted on throughout a Countrywide People’s Congress Standing Committee.



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John Bolton book says Trump asked Xi for China’s help to win 2020 election


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China’s second wave? Beijing faces new lockdown as cases spike in Chinese capital


Although the coronavirus pandemic started in Wuhan, the global epicentre of the virus, the rest of China has been spared the rapid infection rate seen in the city and its surrounding province, Hubei.

As of June 2020, China has reported 83,265 cases of coronavirus, and 68,135 have been in Hubei, the central Chinese province of which Wuhan, a city of 11 million, is the capital. Of China’s total 4,634 reported deaths, 4,512 were in Hubei. Beijing, China’s capital, by contrast, has seen just 8 deaths.

But on Wednesday, China cancelled hundreds of flights to and from its capital as fears rise of a new outbreak. A top Communist Party official, Cai Qi, said that the virus prevention and control situation in Beijing was “extremely grave” and that a new surge in cases “truly rang alarm bells”.

It comes after Beijing, which had for weeks recorded no new cases of the virus, saw 137 new infections in just a few days. Most of the new cases have been linked to a wholesale food market, Xinfandi, which provides more than 90% of the city’s fruit and vegetables but also sells seafood and meat.

New outbreak

Experts believe that the original outbreak began at another Chinese market, Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market, although the Chinese authorities have disputed this.

China locked down Hubei province on January 23, days before the country’s celebrated Chinese new year, when millions of Chinese traditionally travel from the cities to their home towns and cities to be with their families. The measure was then seen as draconian, although lockdowns later spread across the world, with a fifth of the population confined to their homes.

Despite the measure, both the U.S. and Australia criticised the Chinese government for the slowness of the response, pointing out that while Chinese recorded its first case in December 2019, it’s lockdown did not begin until three weeks later. The World Health Organization did not announce that the coronavirus was a global pandemic until January 30.



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