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Global Lens on China


Lippi begins tenure as China coach, target still World Cup

Lippi begins tenure as China coach, target still World Cup


MARCELLO Lippi starts mission almost-impossible on Tuesday as he bids to take China to the 2018 World Cup.

Lippi, who guided Italy to the 2006 World Cup title, was appointed in October to try and resuscitate China's floundering qualification campaign. He kicks off against Qatar in the south-western city Kunming.

China, which has qualified only once for a World Cup, has just one point from the first four games in Group A of third-round Asian qualifying, making victory against Qatar vital.

"We will focus on first dealing with the Qataris and then Korea Republic," Lippi was quoted as saying on the Asian Football Confederation's website. "Our chief aim is World Cup qualification. I hope we can achieve a miracle."

Full Story

USA Today | November 14, 2016, Monday

Will American Football Be The Next Big Video Game Trend In China?

Will American Football Be The Next Big Video Game Trend In China?


IN 2014, the Chinese government set an ambitious goal to raise sports revenue from 0.6% of GDP, at the time, to at least 1.3% of GDP by 2025 or $750 billion. In comparison, sports comprise roughly 3% of the GDP of the United States. One of the largest sports moneymakers in the U.S. is American football. In 2015 the National Football League (NFL) generated a record-breaking $13 billion, which was an increase of $1 billion over 2014. The NFL also has an ambitious goal: to generate $25 billion by 2027, and one of the mechanisms will be via international expansion.

It seems that in this case the aim of the Chinese government and the NFL are in alignment, and they can work together to achieve both goals. In the words of Mark Waller, the NFL’s executive VP of International, “We don’t need a selling point. I don’t think anybody doesn’t understand the opportunity in China. It’s the world’s largest market, the world’s most developing sports market. There’s no real local sport that currently dominates. There’s huge interest in sports and athletes, which is growing, and a huge land of opportunity.”

Full Story

Forbes | October 31, 2016, Monday

Shopping in Australia, while in China

Shopping in Australia, while in China


IN Sydney, a multi-million dollar export industry starts with a simple trip to the shops.

Laden with plastic bags that are almost too heavy to carry, we meet Rika Wenjing, a 24-year-old accountancy graduate from Wuhan, the capital of Hubei province.
She labours with tins of infant food, supplements and skin lotions from a discount chemist to sell to customers back home in China.

Rika has worked part-time for the past two years as a daigou, a freelance retail consultant.

She is glued to her phone and tablet, using the messaging app WeChat to build a network of 300 clients who aren't afraid to pay premium prices for trustworthy Australian goods.

Full Story

BBC | October 24, 2016, Monday

From Rihanna's Dress to Paris Couture: This Is How Guo Pei Is Changing the Fashion Landscape in China

From Rihanna's Dress to Paris Couture: This Is How Guo Pei Is Changing the Fashion Landscape in China


RIHANNA likes to make a grand entrance. But possibly the most dramatic in recent memory would have to be her arrival at last year's Met Gala, when she made her red carpet stroll in a remarkable 55-pound couture creation by Chinese designer Guo Pei. To this day, it's hard to not think of that moment when you mention Guo Pei or her work.

Of course, RiRi's star power helped, but in a single year, the Beijing-based couturier has built up an international presence, garnering worldwide recognition for her exquisite designs and her unwavering commitment to creating beauty, regardless of how long it takes (a shining example: Rihanna's dress took her 30 months to create). She also famously turned down a $700,000 offer to buy her masterpiece of a gown that was on display in the "China: Through the Looking Glass" exhibit at the Met, citing that it was invaluable, that the 50,000 hours she invested couldn't be quantified ("It's as if the piece has a life of its own that can't be bought," she explains).

Full Story

Yahoo | October 9, 2016, Sunday

China football boom offers golden goal for UK firms

China football boom offers golden goal for UK firms


FOOTBALL in China is enjoying a boom as investors not only snap up overseas clubs but also lure big name players and coaches to the nation's Super League.

Its government wants to see China become a footballing superpower, and that means that as well as big stars, the nation is also hungry to acquire knowledge and expertise from overseas.

That provides numerous potential business opportunities, from the grass roots to top tiers of Chinese football, for British firms and clubs to get a foot in the commercial door.

A team of 11 Chinese sports firms is currently in the UK until 2 October, on a visit organised by the UK government's Department for International Trade (DIT).

They have been attending the Soccerex football business convention in Manchester to make contacts and learn more about the game in the UK. All have different reasons for visiting this country.

Full Story

BBC | September 28, 2016, Wednesday

Is This The Most Expensive Apartment In China?

Is This The Most Expensive Apartment In China?


FOR years the southern city of Shenzhen has been famous for being China’s technology hub where you can find the headquarters of web giant Tencent and the country’s biggest smartphone maker Huawei. Lately, however Shenzhen is attracting attention for an entirely different reason: tiny apartments measuring six square meters priced at nearly 1 million yuan.

A local developer named Shahe Shiye has built 11 such mini-homes making up a 15-storey residential property project which is supposed to have a total of 169 apartments in the city’s Nanshan district. The tiny flats, dubbed “pigeon cage apartments” because of their small size, are equipped with bathrooms, kitchens, wardrobes and fold-down beds. These flats each costs 880,000 yuan ($132,000), or $22,000 per square meter. Larger apartments are available, ranging from 36 to 60 square meters.

Full Story

Forbes | September 27, 2016, Tuesday

Chinese outrage over 'ugly' restoration of Great Wall

Chinese outrage over 'ugly' restoration of Great Wall


CHINESE social media users were in an uproar Friday over restoration of a 700-year-old section of the Great Wall that has been covered in concrete, turning it into a smooth, flat-topped path.

Known as one of the most beautiful portions of the "wild", unrestored wall, the eight-kilometre (five-mile) Xiaohekou stretch in northeast Liaoning province was built in 1381 during the Ming Dynasty.

Photos posted online showed that its uneven, crumbling steps and plant growth had been replaced as far as the eye could see with a white, concrete-like cap.

"This looks like the work of a group of people who didn't even graduate from elementary school," said one user of China's Twitter-like Weibo platform. "If this is the result, you might as well have just blown it up."

"Such brutal treatment of the monuments left behind by our ancestors! How is it that people with low levels of cultural awareness can take on leadership positions?" asked another. "Why don't we just raze the Forbidden City in Beijing, too?"

Even the deputy director of Liaoning's department of culture Ding Hui admitted: "The repairs really are quite ugly," according to state broadcaster CCTV.

The Great Wall is not a single unbroken structure but stretches for thousands of kilometres in sections from China's east coast to the edge of the Gobi desert.

In places it is so dilapidated that estimates of its total length vary from 9,000 to 21,000 kilometres, depending on whether missing sections are included. Despite its length it is not, as is sometimes claimed, visible from space.

Emergency maintenance was ordered for Xiaohekou in 2012 to "avoid further damage and dissolution" caused by "serious structural problems and issues due to flooding" and was completed in 2014, the State Administration of Cultural Heritage said in a statement on its website in response to public and media outcry.

The government body has begun an investigation into the approval, implementation and outcome of the maintenance work, stating that it would deal with work units and personnel found to be at fault severely, "without justifying their mistakes".

Around 30 percent of China's Ming-era Great Wall has disappeared over time as adverse natural conditions and reckless human activities -- including stealing the bricks to build houses -- erode the UNESCO World Heritage site, state media reports said last summer. 

Under Chinese regulations people who take bricks from the Great Wall can be fined up to 5,000 yuan ($750), but plant growth on the wall continues to accelerate decay, and tourism, especially to undeveloped sections, continues to severely damage the world's longest human construction. 

Full Story

AFP | September 23, 2016, Friday

IPooch: Son of China's richest man 'buys eight iPhone 7s for his DOG'

IPooch: Son of China's richest man 'buys eight iPhone 7s for his DOG'


COCO the Alaskan Malamute might be the most pampered pooch in the world.

The pet dog has apparently been given eight iPhone 7 handsets by his doted owner, the only son of China's richest man Wang Jianlin, worth £23 billion, according to Chinese media.
Pictures have emerged on China's social media showing the lucky canine posing next to a stack of eight boxes believed to contain a £800 phone in each.

Coco's eccentric owner Wang Sicong, 28, was educated at Winchester College and is already worth £430 million.

These pictures were believed to be uploaded by Wang Sicong to the dog's very own social media account on Weibo, which has nearly 1.9 million followers and is ironically named 'Wang Keke is a bitch'.

The images were posted in the afternoon of September 16, the first day the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 went on sale.

Along with the pictures, a post read: 'Not sure what people are showing off on Moments (a Chinese social media platform)! There is nothing to show off. I was forced to take action.'

Full Story

Daily Mail | September 20, 2016, Tuesday

iPhone 7 pricetags may hinder China sales

iPhone 7 pricetags may hinder China sales


DESPITE Apple's crystal clear endeavor to amplify its presence in China, the higher Chinese pricetags on the new iPhone 7 may further drag down sales, as Chinese smartphone brands are offering equally powerful gadgets at much lower prices.

Apple is not giving up on China even though iPhone sales in the world's most populous economy have lost steam over the past year: China remains in the first batch of countries to release two iPhone 7 flagships, and has been added to the "iPhone Upgrade Program" along with the US and UK, which aims to encourage consumers to change for a new iPhone handset every year.

But Apple is also lifting its retail prices in China, mainly due to the depreciation of the Chinese currency over the past year, in a bid to protect its profits denominated in the US dollar. According to the Apple's official website for China, retail prices of all sorts of iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus models have added 300 yuan ($45) in comparison with equivalent iPhone 6S models.

Full Story

zdnet | September 9, 2016, Friday

How did China save the giant panda?

How did China save the giant panda?


THEY'RE cute, they're cuddly and they've just been brought back from the brink of extinction. 

We're talking about the giant panda, a global icon that's just been taken off the endangered list, largely due to Chinese conservation efforts. But how exactly did they do it?

It's all about the bamboo. 

China has been trying for years to increase the population of the giant panda.

Full Story

BBC | September 5, 2016, Monday

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


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