No. 69 | 25.09.2021

Model of Evergrande real estate development in Shenyang [Sina]


Founded in 1996 with few employees and benefitting from the 2000s real estate boom, developer Evergrande earned US $78.4 billion last year

The company specializes in middle-class real estate with low production costs; founder Xu Jiayin was the richest Chinese person in 2017 (US $45 billion) and joined the country’s top advisory body (CCPPC)

Nikkei Asia, 22.09.2021

With over US $300 billion in debt, construction giant Evergrande risks bankruptcy, facing protests from creditors for months

Due to the new state policy to limit high indebtedness of construction companies since last year, about half of the company’s 800+ projects are on-hold; Chinese government is expected to intervene

Brasil de Fato, 21.09.2021

Caixin Global, 20.09.2021

Backed by government funding, China leads the US in many high-tech sectors – particularly hardware – but lags behind in software

Chinese companies dominate sales of smartphones (58% 2021, US 15%), solar panels (67% 2020, US 1%), commercial drones (80% of US market 2020 Q1, US 4%), and telecoms equipment (36% of 2021 revenue, US 9%) but still lag in semiconductors (4% of 2020 sales, US 47%)

Washington Post, 21.09.2021


Australia, US, and UK announce new military alliance (AUKUS) and agreement to supply nuclear submarines to Oceanian country

Although not explicitly mentioned, China is the target of the “security pact” that signals a regional “arms race”, causing Indonesian president Joko Widodo to cancel scheduled visit to Canberra; Australia cancels submarine contract with France in “backstabbing” move

People’s Dispatch, 22.09.2021

Global Times, 21.09.2021

Iran becomes a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) at the 20th anniversary summit in Dushanbe, Tajikistan

After 16 years of observer status, Iran joins China, Russia, Pakistan, India and other Central Asian members; stabilizing Afghanistan – an observer state – is SCO’s priority as the joint declaration calls for “a more representative, democratic, just, and multipolar world”

The Diplomat, 21.09.2021

Xinhua News, 18.09.2021

Read the full Dushanbe declaration

Beijing orders Chinese mining companies that broke laws in DR Congo to leave, as Kinshasa reviews infrastructure-for-minerals deals

Wu Peng, senior diplomat for the region, said companies will be punished by the Chinese government, while IMF gives DRC pressure to “clean up” foreign deals to get access its US $1.5 billion credit line

South China Morning Post, 16.09.2021

Category Icons

Agriculture and Environment

At the UN General Assembly, President Xi pledges China will stop building coal plants abroad and support developing countries in low-carbon energy projects

China is the world’s largest coal producer and public financier but funds only 13% of total coal power capacity (2013-19) overseas; 44 international coal plants (US $50 billion) could be impacted

South China Morning Post, 22.09.2021

Reuters, 22.09.2021

China’s leading coal producers join green energy trading pilot to boost renewables and achieve carbon emission goals

The program allows CO2 emitters to directly buy green energy, thereby offsetting emissions and financing high-cost renewables sector; this should see 20-30 billion kWh of green energy traded next year

Caixin Global, 16.09.2021

South China Morning Post, 09.09.2021

People’s Life and Culture

Chinese version of TikTok limits app use for children under 14 years-old to 40 minutes/day

Douyin announcement comes amid government measures to discourage minors from spending too much time online and recommends providers “implement time management tools, feature restrictions, and purchase restrictions for underage users”

Sixth Tone, 18.09.2021

China commemorates 90th anniversary of the September 18 Incident, that began the 14-year-long war against Japanese aggression (1931-45)

During the 1931 “Mukden Incident”, the train station explosion in northeastern Shenyang was used as pretext for full-scale Japanese invasion; activities were organized and sirens wailed in cities nation-wide to remember the 35 million Chinese casualties of that war

China Daily, 20.09.2021

China Daily, 18.09.2021

September 18 Incident [Li Min/China Daily]

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