CSG news update -- 2007-08-06

From China Study Group <chinastudygroup@gmail.com>
Date Mon, 6 Aug 2007 02:00:31 -0700

China Study Group news update

Tonnes of hot metal on the way to China
Sydney Morning Herald | 2007-08-06
LONDON: Police have warned of a bizarre crime wave sweeping Britain as thieves strip millions of pounds' worth of metal off buildings to ship to China and other countries where demand is soaring.  Thousands of properties - including churches and other historic buildings with lead roofs - have ...

China in line for record tourists
Asian Age | 2007-08-06
Beijing: More than 12 million foreign tourists visited China in the first half of 2007 and the country is in line to set a new record if the trend continues, according to the national tourist body.  The total for the first six months of the year is 18 per cent up on the same period from 2006, sugg...

Crispy duck banned from Beijing toilets
Courier-Mail | 2007-08-05
Complaints over toilets with poor sanitation and toilet operators turning them into commercial operations led to the ban, which comes into force in October.  "It is not proper to sell soft drinks or snacks right at the toilets,” the Beijing News said, citing sources within the Beijing Municipal ...

Shipping costs rise on Chinese demand
FT | 2007-08-05
Javier Blas
The cost of shipping dry bulk commodities, such as coal, iron ore and cereals, has surged to a new high boosted by strong demand, port congestion and a significant lengthening of trade routes.  The Baltic Dry Index, the best gauge of the world's dry bulk shipping costs, last week rose above 7,...

Rescuers pull out three more trapped workers from flooded tunnel in central China
Xinhua | 2007-08-05
 ENSHI, Hubei Province, Aug. 5 (Xinhua) -- Rescuers have pulled out three more trapped workers alive from a flooded rail tunnel in central China's Hubei Province, and are still looking for the other nine still trapped workers, sources with the local rescue headquarters said on Sunday.      Res...

China blacklists 400 exporters
China Daily | 2007-08-05
BEIJING -- China has established a blacklist of companies that have violated rules on the quality of exports, the commerce ministry said Saturday amid growing global concern about the safety of China-made goods.  We have set up a blacklist system for companies in the exporting sector and punished ...

China Bans Crude Birth Control Slogans
Forbes | 2007-08-05
BEIJING -  China has banned crude and insensitive slogans promoting the country's 'one-child' family planning policy, such as "Raise fewer babies but more piggies," which have stoked anger in rural areas, state media said Sunday.  China's 28-year-old family planning policy limits...

Breathing an Olympian effort for our athletes in Beijing
Toronto Star | 2007-08-04
Matthew Chung
Standing on a soccer field before a match as the national anthem plays is always a breathtaking experience for Canadian goalkeeper Karina LeBlanc.  But when LeBlanc, 27, and her national teammates were training in Beijing in April and May, it was the city's polluted air that had them choked up...

Chinese universities forbidden to dispel pregnant students
Xinhua | 2007-08-04
BEIJING, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Chinese universities are not allowed to dispel pregnant students, but have to help settle residential registration for students' babies, according to a government circular.      The circular advised female students to "temporarily suspend schooling during childbeari...

Human Rights Watch: China Making No Progress
Christian Today | 2007-08-04
Hudson Tsuei
China is failing to make progress ahead of the Beijing Olympics as government security forces intensify crackdowns on independent media and individual activists, says a human rights advocacy group.  "The government seems afraid that its own citizens will embarrass it by speaking out about politica...

China closes tourist attraction
Channel News Asia | 2007-08-04
BEIJING - China has decided to close part of Huangshan mountain, one of its main tourist attractions, for three years to allow plant life to recover and air quality to improve, state media said Saturday.  Huangshan, which means "Yellow Mountain," is located in east China's Anhui province. It h...

China tells living Buddhas to obtain permission before they reincarnate
Times Online | 2007-08-04
Jane Macartney 
Tibet's living Buddhas have been banned from reincarnation without permission from China's atheist leaders. The ban is included in new rules intended to assert Beijing's authority over Tibet's restive and deeply Buddhist people.  "The so-called reincarnated living Buddha without go...

New crackdown in China targets foreign, Hong Kong satellite channel broadcasts
IHT | 2007-08-04
BEIJING: China is cracking down on cable television operators offering unauthorized foreign satellite broadcasts in a bid to maintain the communist government's monopoly on information, a report said Saturday.  China's TV regulator last month ordered local authorities to root out operators...

 Cash handouts to journalists skew Chinese media coverage
FT | 2007-08-03
Jamil Anderlini and Mure Dickie
HSBC and the China Charity Foundation celebrated a decade of working together last month, bringing in the global bank's chairman and renting a room in the Great Hall of the People.  Organisers of the event extended the charity to Chinese reporters: donating Rmb200 ($26.40, €19.33, £13) to e...

China arrest takes scandal into politburo
FT | 2007-08-03
Richard McGregor
The former political secretary to a member of China's politburo has been detained in a widening probe over misuse of Shanghai's pension funds, elevating the scandal for the first time into the inner-circle of the Chinese leadership.  The detention of Wang Weigong, reported by a Chinese fin...

Activist held in China pollution battle
FT | 2007-08-03
Geoff Dyer
A black sedan with dark windows follows Xu Jiehua when she rides her motorcycle through her village on the shores of Tai lake, China's third-largest. A policeman sits outside her back door all day; another waits by the front gate.  It has been this way since her husband, Wu Lihong, one of Chin...