March 2009 Entries
It's nearly impossible to separate China's economic interests from those of the U.S. these days. China currently owns about $2 trillion in foreign currency, mainly U.S. dollars, and in 2008 the U.S. and China had $409.2 billion in trade volume. But just because the two countries have many mutual economic interests, doesn't mean they don't have areas of disagreement.
A new survey conducted by the China Youth and Children Research Foundation polled about 4,000 high school and vocational school students in China, Japan, the United States and South Korea. While some of the high school frustrations, like finding the balance between work and personal life were pretty universal, there were also some interesting contrasts between the students. Here are a few:
Yuan Jiguang is probably one of Liu Xiang's biggest fans. He even bought a car just because the famous Olympic hurdler endorsed it. But after getting into a car accident, he plans to sue Liu for about $150 in damages.
Many economists and financial experts have proposals for economic recovery and preventing another global financial crisis, but few proposals are quite as ambitious as one from China's Zhou Xiaochuan, the head of China's central bank. In an essay posted yesterday on the bank's website, he proposed the creation of a universal currency.
Generally speaking, Nobel Peace Prize winners don't have too much trouble entering a country in order to attend a peace conference. But that's not the case for the Dalai Lama.
China Mobile, which has a staggering 464 million out of China's 641 million cell phone subscribers, just released its annual report, giving some interesting insights into China's mobile phone industry. Although the year didn't exactly meet expectations, profits, users, and text message use continue to increase.
Coke's attempt to buy China Huiyuan Juice Company was rejected today, on the grounds that it violated China's antitrust laws. If it had succeeded, the $2.4 billion dollar deal would have been the largest takeover by a foreign company in China. Instead, Huiyuan remains Chinese.
March isn't always the favorite month of Chinese leadership when it comes to the topic of Tibet. Last year thousands of Buddhist monks rioted in the streets of Lhasa, causing Chinese officials to crack down against the protests. Naturally, this wasn't exactly the PR strategy Beijing had in mind with just months to go before the Beijing Olympics.
While most of the stem cell attention in the U.S. centers around the president's executive order to restore federal funding to embryonic stem cell research today, one Chinese hospital has been using stem cells for a unique purpose: plastic surgery.
Just days before her 50th birthday, Barbie's flagship store in Shanghai opened and is ready for business. I wrote about the Barbie store about a month ago, which has everything Barbie from $15,000 Barbie-inspired Vera Wang wedding dresses to more affordable Barbie chocolates and drinks, like the pink Barbietini.
It's been six months since the scare over melamine milk shocked China, and Chinese leaders have announced a new set of food safety laws. While proponents of the laws are hopeful that the regulations will restore confidence in the system, many remain skeptical.
The sale of two bronze heads from the Qing Dynasty has overshadowed an art auction that would otherwise have been known for its astounding sales. The art collection of Yves Saint Laurent grossed an astonishing $477 million dollars, far surpassing previous expectations.
This year a record 6.1 million students will graduate from Chinese universities. In most years, this number would represent a sign of China's educational progress over the past few decades. In the 1980s, only about 3% of Chinese students attended college, versus about 20% today.