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Thursday, June 6, 2019


Dear reader,

Five things:

  • Here is an excellent take on the U.S.-China trade war: a Q&A with businessman, China media veteran, and author James McGregor in New York magazine.

  • This is very China 2019: The People’s Daily has published a photo showing government workers using radio equipment to test for illegal transmissions near high school examination sites in Qinhuangdao, Hebei Province. They hope to “prevent and combat cheating by using radio equipment” during the gaokao (高考 gāokǎo), the college entrance exams that take place June 6–9.

  • In the Philippines, recent anger directed toward China has inflicted what experts call “collateral damage” upon the Tsinoys, i.e., Filipino Chinese, who historically have persisted through discrimination. See ‘We are Filipinos, and we hate China’: China’s influence in the Philippines, and backlash against Tsinoys, on SupChina.

  • This week on the Sinica Podcast, Kaiser sits down with Jude Blanchette to talk about his new book, China's New Red Guards: The Return of Radicalism and the Rebirth of Mao Zedong, which just came out on June 3. Click here to listen, or find the show wherever you listen to podcasts.

  • Below is an excerpt from our daily Access member’s newsletter. If you’d like to read more about the context behind China’s 5G plans and receive a complete daily summary of China news, please subscribe to SupChina Access.

—Jeremy Goldkorn, Editor-in-Chief


5G — the next national project?

Building a domestic 5G network is now an urgent national priority for China, one to be achieved by any means necessary, and possibly at great cost.

THE NEWS

Green light for 5G rollout

“China has given the go ahead for its major state-owned mobile carries to start rolling out next generation networks known as 5G, a move experts said was partly a response to the ongoing trade war with the U.S.,” reports CNBC (or see the Xinhua report in Chinese, with a flashy infographic).

Another sign of the vocal enthusiasm for 5G at the highest levels of the Chinese government: The word “5G” appears 14 times on state-owned news agency Xinhua’s homepage as I write this; Party newspaper People’s Daily uses it nine times (both links in Chinese).

Support for 5G part of new stimulus

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and the ministries of Commerce and of Ecology and Environment jointly released a two-year plan (in Chinese) to promote consumption, especially of electronics and vehicles that depend on 5G and new energy technologies.

Huawei working 24/7

Bloomberg News Network reports:

Huawei has assigned as many as 10,000 of its developers to work across three shifts a day in offices in Shanghai, Shenzhen, and Xi’an to try to eliminate the need for American software and circuitry, according to people familiar with the matter. From janitors to drivers, everyone has been drafted into the struggle and told to brace for escalating political and market pressure. Huawei has declined to comment beyond saying it’s had contingency plans in place for just such an occasion…

Engineers in some groups haven’t gone home for several days.

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