No. 05 | 20.06.2020

Volunteers from the Beijing Blue Sky Rescue Team spray disinfectant in Yuegezhuang wholesale market in Fengtai district, Beijing. [Photo:]

National Politics

After COVID-19 outbreak in Xinfadi, a market that supplies 80% of fresh food in Beijing, the city is massively mobilizing to contain the virus

Using big data, artificial intelligence and 100,000 community volunteers knocking on doors, the municipal government mapped and tested 700,000 people in 6 days

Federal government will invest USD $24 billion in subsidies for basic education this year, 8.3% more than last year

Amount is part of the total education budget, and includes free books for 154 million students and living allowances for another 25 million low income students

High profile rape case against adoptive teenage daughter raises questions about inadequate sexual education in schools and at home

From January 2018 to October 2019, there were 32,500 child molestation court cases and a survey shows 68% parents omit sexual education with children


Official Canadian intelligence report (CSIS) admits that arrest of Meng Wangzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer and daughter of the company’s founder, was “highly political in nature” and was commissioned by the FBI

CSIS reveals it acted to camouflage White House involvement in December 2018 arrest

Political tensions may reconfigure China’s future trade partnerships, which consume 30% of major global commodities

The country dominates the iron ore, copper and soybean market (60% of transactions), in addition to 30% of fertilizers, 20% of oil and 17% of natural gas. USA and Australia may lose space

The biggest military conflict in over four decades on the China-India border causes casualties in both armies

Beijing said the situation is under control and that the two sides have agreed to dialogue about the territory in dispute


Despite crisis between the US and China, American Express becomes the first foreign electronic payments company to have access to the Chinese market of USD $27 trillion

The license was granted to a joint venture with Express Technology Services (Hangzhou) and should bring relief to AmEx, whose shares have already plunged 18% this year

By annual comparison, industrial production grew 4.4% in May and internal consumption fell 2.8%, but with improvement in relation to April (-7.5%)

Manufacturing investment fell by 14.8% (January-May), but investment in construction machinery skyrocketed (more than 60% annually). Low consumption still creating concerns

Retail sales fell 16.2% (January-April) in the annual comparison and represented 4.36% in the 6.8% decrease in GDP in the first quarter. Government already implements measures to encourage consumption

Domestic consumption is the basis of the economy (60% of GDP growth), but has already decelerated since 2019

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Agriculture and Environment

Online sales of food produced by local farmers has skyrocketed in the last 3 years, thanks to the expansion of  internet in the countryside (98% of villages connected), reaching USD $56 billion in 2019

Delivery logistics still face issues, but internet has been crucial in reducing poverty and has enabled improvements in education and health

In the arid region of Xihaigu (Ningxia province), ethnic Hui, smart system monitors the supply and quality of drinking water for 1 million people and irrigation for agriculture and livestock

Between 2006 and 2019, access to potable water increased from 26% to 90% and changed life in the region

People’s Life and Culture

Traditional Chinese arts (music, crafts, literature, customs, etc.) attract huge interest from youth on social media, through documentaries and live streams that teach techniques and sell products

On the TikTok platform, 48 million videos on “intangible cultural heritage” have been posted since 2016, with 200 billion views

Wang Dinggou, a Red Army veteran who participated in the Long March (1934-36), died in Beijing at the age of 107

A member of the theatrical troupe, she did agitprop and makeup, as well as taking up arms during battles. Sold to her husband at age 15, she ran away at age 20 and joined the Communist Party

Wang Dinggou, a Red Army veteran who participated in the Long March (1934-36), died in Beijing at the age of 107