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Shanghai Daily,上海日报

Global Lens on China


Next Step for China's Controversial Dancing Grannies? Endorsement Deals

Next Step for China's Controversial Dancing Grannies? Endorsement Deals


FOR the legions of dancing retirees in China whose late-night public gatherings have made them the target of noise complaints and worse, one popular Beijing group may have hit on the solution: corporate sponsorship.

China’s public dancers – often referred to as tiaowu dama, or “dancing grannies,” because they tend to skew older and female – have found themselves at the center of a passionate public debate in recent months. Numbering as many as 100 million nationwide, they argue the dancing is an enjoyable form of exercise that helps reduce health care costs. But neighbors point to their boom boxes, which blast everything from saccharine Mandopop to sanitized hip-hop, as a public nuisance, saying the noise disrupts sleep and study.

The grannies have even managed to court controversy abroad, recently inviting police intervention in places from New York to Moscow.

One group of Beijing dancers, the Nanguan Art Troupe, has managed to buck the trend, winning fame and fans (as well as extensive media coverage from foreign and domestic news outlets) despite playing their music at volumes that would be unfathomable for other groups.

Full Story

The Wall Street Journal | July 29, 2014, Tuesday

Huawei sees massive handset growth outside China

Huawei sees massive handset growth outside China


CHINESE telecommunications vendor Huawei announced today its growth in smartphone shipments for the first half of 2014 has increased 62 percent when comparted to same time last year.

The company said its consumer business group made 34.27 million smartphone shipments for 1H 2014, out of 64.21 million total consumer devices shipped.

Huawei pinned the increase on the launch of its Ascend P7 and Mate 2 4G handsets made during the half, claiming the P7 was approaching 2 million units moved.

For the second quarter of the year, Huawei said it had seen 550 percent growth in the Middle East and Africa, 275 percent in Latin America, 180 percent in Asia-Pacific, and 120 percent in Europe.

"Huawei shipped a total of 20.56 million smartphones to markets in Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Africa, an increase of 85% compared to last year," the company said. "Huawei also held majority smartphone market share in selected markets in Asia and Latin America."

Full Story

ZDNet | July 29, 2014, Tuesday

China brands beat global rivals with tea toothpaste and pickled plums

China brands beat global rivals with tea toothpaste and pickled plums


WITH green-tea flavored toothpaste and pickled plum juice, an army of Chinese retailers is tapping local tastes to whittle away market share from global rivals that are banking their future growth on the world's second-largest consumer market.

Senior executives at companies such as The Coca-Cola Co., Procter & Gamble Co. and Colgate-Palmolive Co. are being forced to adapt as the challenge posed by local firms intensifies in a slowing economy.

Last year, China's 1.15 trillion yuan ($185.31 billion) consumer goods market grew at 7.4 percent annually, half the rate of three years ago, according to a report this month from Bain & Company and Kantar World Panel.

In this tougher market, both local and foreign brands are targeting the same customers, and increasingly, the domestic firms are winning: nearly two-thirds of foreign brands surveyed lost market share in China last year, according to the report.

Full Story

GMA Network | July 29, 2014, Tuesday

China Aims To Copy 'Avatar' Success With 'Bainiaoyi'

China Aims To Copy 'Avatar' Success With 'Bainiaoyi'


"Avatar" the sequel? Not quite -- but a Chinese production company is banking on a box office performance of "Avatar" proportions from "Bainiaoyi" a homegrown rival to James Cameron's 3D sci-fi epic, which is the second highest-grossing film ever in China.

Beijing Chinese Century Media Co. will produce "Bainiaoyi," which the official Chinese news agency Xinhua described as "based on folklore from the Zhuang ethnic minority in which a young man named Guka tried to find the 'bainiaoyi,' a type of magical clothing, and defeats an evil dragon that bullies the Zhuang people."

Zhao Song, general manager of Beijing Chinese Century Media Co., told Xinhua the production team aims to make "Bainioyi" an epic oriental romantic fantasy movie that can rival "Avatar" That team includes special effects directors from "Avatar" along with crew from Hollywood hits like "Pirates of the Caribbean" and "Terminator 2."

Full Story

International Business Times | July 28, 2014, Monday

China Box Office: $47 million 'Continent' Wins Weekend Source: Variety

China Box Office: $47 million 'Continent' Wins Weekend Source: Variety


"THE Continent," the nostalgia trip movie by celebrity blogger and race driver Han Han, dominated the Chinese box office at the weekend and quickly ended the reign of "Tiny Times 3."

Released on Thursday (July 24), "The Continent" delivered a super strong first day gross of $12 million, before going on to amass $47.1 million in its four day weekend run, according to local data source Entgroup. Rentrak estimates on Sunday had put it at $45 million.

That was fractionally lower than "Tiny Times 3" had managed the previous weekend, but is still a huge number for a first time film-maker, and once again proves the power of social media in China at motivating youth audiences.

Full Story

Variety | July 28, 2014, Monday

China will soon be the world's top business travel market

China will soon be the world's top business travel market


CHINA is the world's hottest market for business travelers, and spending in the country could surpass the U.S. as soon as 2015, according to a new report.

Business travel spending in China hit $225 billion last year -- or 23 percent of the $1.1 trillion global total. That's second only to the U.S., where spending reached $274 billion, a report from the Global Business Travel Association said.

The pace of business travel growth in China is remarkable. Since 2000, spending has expanded by about 16 percent each year on average, compared to 1 percent in the U.S.

"Despite stronger growth, the U.S. continues to lose with China, which is poised to take over as the #1 business travel market in the world by 2016," the report said.

For decades, the Chinese economy experienced double-digit growth -- an expansion that has been reflected in the country's business travel industry.

Full Story

CNN Money | July 28, 2014, Monday

Talking to China's

Talking to China's "Web Junkies"


WHEN Arthur Kleinman, the Harvard anthropologist and psychiatrist, studied Chinese patients in the nineteen-sixties, he found that people who had been raised to suppress and endure had trouble acknowledging individual distress. He told me, “It was unthinkable that they would use psychological terminology to refer to themselves, no matter how well you got to know them.” A half-century later, however, as China reckons with profound economic and social change, it has embraced the vocabulary of psychology with the passion of the convert.

Chinese newspapers devote special attention to the affliction known as wangyin, or Internet addiction. Last year, America’s Diagnostic Statistical Manual included “Internet Gaming Disorder” in an appendix, but called for more research “before it might be considered for inclusion in the main book as a formal disorder.” China has already classified Internet addiction as a clinical disorder, which it considers a leading threat to the health of its young people. One reason is political: wary of the organizing potential of the Internet, the government was early to adopt a medical imprimatur that could be invoked for efforts to control usage of the Web. In 2005, the Beijing judge Shan Xiuyun estimated that ninety per cent of the city’s juvenile crime was Internet-related—a remarkable notion at a time when less than ten per cent of the nation’s population was online.

Full Story

The New Yorker | July 28, 2014, Monday

Health Advocates Urge Better Education to Curb China's AIDS Infections

Health Advocates Urge Better Education to Curb China's AIDS Infections


CHINA has a relatively low prevalence of HIV positive citizens, with fewer than point-one (0.1) percent of adults infected. But the number of AIDS cases continues to rise, and health advocates blame a lack of education and prevention.

The number of people with HIV in China is fairly low given the size of the population.  According to official statistics, 800,000 Chinese are living with HIV, but health officials are concerned about a rise in HIV transmission, particularly among the young.

According to Chinese state media, more than 70,000 new cases of HIV were identified in 2013, and infection rates are rising among teenagers and young adults.

Full Story

VOA | July 24, 2014, Thursday

China warns against

China warns against "blind" rush to build coal-to-gas plants


CHINA has warned operators against "blindly" developing projects to turn coal into synthetic fuel, underlining the requirements needed for regulatory approval as companies rush into investments that are costly and might harm the environment.

The warning, published by the National Energy Administration (NEA) on its website (www.nea.gov.cn) on Tuesday, came days after plans to produce billions of cubic metres of gas from coal were described by a top government researcher as "irrational".

The government bans coal-to-gas plants that would produce less than 2 billion cubic metres a year and coal-to-oil projects smaller than one million tonnes a year, according to the NEA document.

Even projects meeting those guidelines must get approval from the State Council, China's cabinet, before construction can begin, it added.

"Some regions are highly enthusiastic about new projects. There are signs of blind development regardless of the environment, water resources, technology and financial capabilities," the statement said.

Full Story

Reuters | July 22, 2014, Tuesday

Chinese Pork Producer Rekindles Hopes For I.P.O.

Chinese Pork Producer Rekindles Hopes For I.P.O.


THIS little piggy is going to the market after all.

Three months after it scrapped plans for a $5.3 billion share sale in Hong Kong, China’s WH Group, the world’s biggest pork producer, is back with a leaner offering that will seek to raise about $2 billion.

WH Group was created last year after Shuanghui International of China paid $4.7 billion in cash for Smithfield Foods, the biggest pork producer in the United States. That deal remains the biggest-ever buyout of an American company by a Chinese one.

The enlarged group announced plans in April to raise as much as $5.3 billion in a Hong Kong initial public offering, a deal that was criticized as being bloated with an unprecedented 29 underwriters. The I.P.O. was later slashed to $1.9 billion before ultimately being canceled because of lackluster demand.

Investors were put off by WH’s hefty debt levels, the I.P.O.’s steep asking price and the company’s decision to award its top two executives a combined $600 million bonus for 2013. On top of this, an outbreak of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus in the United States led to sharp increases in hog prices this spring, complicating WH’s plans to export pork from the United States to China.

Full Story

The New York Times | July 22, 2014, Tuesday

As China continues to grab increasing media attention worldwide, our partner runs a regular column to reveal what overseas media are saying about China and how they view the country's fast economic, social and cultural development.


Check it out at http://www.guancha.cn/WaiMeiKanZhongGuo/


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