Shanghai reports no new Covid cases for first time since March

China has reported no new Covid-19 infections in Shanghai for the first time since March, as the country’s latest outbreak subsides after months of lockdowns and other restrictions. China is the last major economy committed to a zero-Covid strategy, stamping out all infections with a combination of targeted lockdowns, mass testing and long quarantine periods. The economic hub of Shanghai was forced into a months-long lockdown during a Covid surge this spring driven by the fast-spreading Omicron variant. Beijing also shuttered schools and offices for weeks over a separate outbreak.…

Xi Jinping to visit Hong Kong on 25th anniversary of British handover

The Chinese president, Xi Jinping, will visit Hong Kong for the 25th anniversary of the city’s handover to mainland China, the state news agency Xinhua reported on Saturday. The trip will be Xi’s first known visit outside mainland China since January 2020 after the Covid-19 outbreak. He will also attend the inaugural ceremony of the sixth-term government of Hong Kong, Xinhua said. John Lee will become the city’s new leader on 1 July, replacing Carrie Lam, who oversaw some of the territory’s most tumultuous times with anti-government protests and Covid.…

Our global food supply is at risk when high gas prices limit the creation of fertiliser | Andrew Whitelaw

If water is the source of life, fertiliser is the source of scaleable food production. The increasing cost of fertiliser is one of the largest contributors to a “cost-price” squeeze affecting the farmers of major agricultural products in Australia and globally. The cost of food is increasing in step with the cost of producing that food and, in the past quarter in Australia, we have seen food inflation increase by 2.8% – the fourth-highest quarter since the turn of the century. The price of wheat, the main staple for much…

Understanding China’s Military Operations Other Than War

understanding chinas military operations other than war

Advertisement The announcement from Beijing recently about signing an order with trial outlines on military operations other than war (MOOTW) has triggered foreboding in some quarters that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) may be taking a leaf out of the Russian military playbook, inspired by Moscow’s so-called “special military operations” in reference to its invasion of Ukraine. More ominously, some see the new order as a precursor to an impending Taiwan crisis. Coming so soon after the Chinese defense minister, General Wei Fenghe, had vowed at the Shangri-La Dialogue…

China’s ‘Fragmented Authoritarianism’ During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Advertisement In early June, when the local authorities of Shanghai lifted its three-month-long lockdown, the central government soon announced its own approach toward the zero COVID-19 goal: conducting mass PCR testing nationwide, alongside some economic stimulus. In practice, this policy requests every resident to take PCR tests regularly and frequently in exchange for relatively moderate measures in dealing with a local outbreak. However, the skeptics point out that based on China’s political system of fragmented authoritarianism, such a gigantic health project would be untenable. Local governments, facing economic strain, usually cope…

Falling out of Favor: How China Lost the Nordic Countries

falling out of favor how china lost the nordic countries

Advertisement Five years ago, the Nordic countries (this article will focus on Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden) were still eagerly pushing for closer ties with China. Each of the Nordic countries held frequent high-level meetings with Beijing, signed new Memorandums of Understanding to expand bilateral cooperation, competed with each other to attract Chinese investments, and welcomed Chinese-led multilateral initiatives such as the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) as well as China’s growing involvement in the Arctic. In the past few years, however, perceptions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC)…

Chinese premier calls for more coal production as electricity demand soars

China’s premier has called for increased production of coal to stave off mass blackouts, as early summer heatwaves have prompted record electricity usage. On Friday authorities again issued high temperature warnings for about a dozen provinces across the central and northern provinces, after consecutive days in the high 30s. As people sought to escape the heat this week, state media reported that electricity demand was up 8.8% in north-west China compared with last year, and 3.2% in northern China, citing the State Grid Corp of China. Records for maximum electricity…

Two killed after Chinese electric car falls from third floor of company’s offices

A leading Chinese electric car company has said two people were killed when one of its vehicles fell from the third floor of its Shanghai headquarters. Nio, a homegrown brand sometimes seen as a potential rival to Tesla, said the incident happened at about 5.20pm on Wednesday. One of the victims was its employee and the other from a partner company. They were both inside the vehicle when it fell. “After the incident we immediately began to work with the public security department to find the cause of the accident,”…

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