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Posts Tagged ‘Zhou Yongkang’

China Arrests Former Security Czar in Major Political Purge

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 7, 2014

Zhou Yongkang faces serious corruption charges

Zhou’s suspected rapsheet is extensive, according to Xinhua, the Chinese state newswire:

“The [party’s] investigation found that Zhou seriously violated the Party’s political, organizational and confidentiality discipline. He took advantage of his posts to seek profits for others and accepted huge bribes personally and through his family, the statement said. He abused his power to help relatives, mistresses and friends make huge profits from operating businesses, resulting in serious losses of state-owned assets. Zhou leaked the Party’s and country’s secrets. He seriously violated self-disciplinary regulations and accepted a large amount of money and properties personally and through his family. Zhou committed adultery with a number of women and traded his power for sex and money.”

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Top Chinese Security Official Sounds Warning about Economic Imbalances

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on December 5, 2011

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Zhou Yongkang, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, casts his ballot at a voting booth in Beijing, capital of China, Nov. 8, 2011 (Photo: Lan Hongguang / Xinhua / Zuma)

As labor unrest continues to bubble in China’s export-oriented manufacturing regions, a top Chinese official has warned the country needs to improve its means of handling the harmful side-effects of its market economy. In comments published Saturday, politburo member and security boss Zhou Yongkang told provincial officials that the country’s economic development was causing imbalances and gaps in wealth between both regions and individuals. While China’s economy is a source of vitality and power, “it can also cause great harm to society’s ethics and trust,” he said, according to a report in the state-run Legal Daily. (Here’s the Legal Daily piece in Chinese, and a shorter English report from the state-run Xinhua news service.)

Zhou comments come as China faces increasing economic headwinds. Last week China’s official purchasing manager index, a measure of manufacturing demand, fell to its lowest point since February 2009. The PMI hit 49, which is significant as any number below 50 indicates a contraction. The latest official service sector PMI number, which was released Saturday, and a similar figure from HSBC issued Monday were both down as well. Last week the government loosened banks’ reserve ratio requirement, which should help stimulate the economy by freeing up some $55 billion in liquidity. That comes after months of tightening, and offers a strong signal that the government believes slowing growth is now a bigger concern than inflation.

At the same time, further reports of labor unrest emerged last week. In Shanghai workers at the Singapore-owned Hi-P International electronics factory went on strike last week over plans to lay off workers and move the factory, the Associated Press reported. That follows labor unrest in factory towns in Guangdong province late last month. It can be difficult to gauge the extent of strikes in China. The size of the country means that workers are invariably taking action somewhere, regardless of the overall economic picture. And not all strikes are reported, but sometimes, as during labor disputes at several foreign-owned factories in 2010, the high-profile nature of the companies, including Honda, ensured widespread attention. Read the rest of this entry »

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China’s Security Chief Goes on Tour—How Is Asia Reacting?

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on August 24, 2011

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Over the past week, as I’ve traveled across Asia, I’ve discovered an unlikely partner in my continental peregrinations:

China's Politburo Standing Committee Member Zhou Yongkang arrives for a meeting in Kathmandu, Nepal, August 17, 2011. (Photo: Navesh Chitrakar / Reuters)

China’s security chief Zhou Yongkang. The senior Chinese envoy’s travels have taken him to Nepal, Laos, Cambodia and Tajikistan. The final stop is Mongolia, where Zhou is expected to head on Tuesday.

In Zhou’s wake, the narrative has tended to follow the same plot-line: first, China’s state media proclaims “mutually beneficial cooperation” and “longstanding friendship” between Beijing and the local government. Then a raft of trade deals or bequeathing of military goodies is announced. Finally, an undercurrent of unease follows, with regional analysts wondering about China’s growing economic and security might.

Last Saturday, Zhou was in Cambodia, where he met with Prime Minister Hun Sen. In addition to various mining, road-construction and farming deals, China has agreed to supply nearly $200 million in helicopters to Cambodia. Beijing is already the Southeast Asian nation’s largest foreign investor, and Hun Sen, who has quietly evolved into one of Asia’s longest-serving strongmen, has been vociferous in his support of China. His enthusiasm for Chinese largesse stands in marked contrast to his feelings toward Western donors who tend to attach pesky strings like human-rights commitments to their aid. The Phnom Penh Post quoted a local researcher worrying that “Cambodia will become subservient to China.” Read the rest of this entry »

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