Want to learn more about China first-hand, from reporters on the ground? In every episode, we take a deep-dive into a specific topic, mixing independent reporting and exclusive interviews to bring you unique insights into an emerging potential superpower. Now, we’re featuring regular updates on the coronavirus pandemic from across the country. Brought to you by the South China Morning Post.
Xi Jinping, Kunming COP15 and China’s escalating power crisis
SCMP reporter Echo Xie reports from Kunming and the COP15 Biodiversity conference, where China’s president Xi Jinping announced a $US232 million fund for developing nations to protect biodiversity, a massive expansion of solar and wind power projects and China’s first official national parks. Meanwhile, as floods in Shanxi province shut coal mines, reporter Siqi Ji discusses the ongoing power crisis in China’s northeastern ‘rust belt’ amid concerns and growing anger as the cold winter looms.
China’s coal crisis: how to balance supply, demand and a changing climate
Mass power outages, factories with restricted hours and the prospect of major disruptions in the production of Christmas retail goods. This is the reality of China's three-pronged power crisis, comprising supply, price and regulation of coal-powered electricity. SCMP China desk reporter Holly Chik speaks with political economy journalist Cissy Zhou about how long this power crisis is expected to last, how a ban on Australian coal complicates things and the prospects for the global economy.
Meng Wanzhou and the two Michaels: what’s next for Huawei, Canada and China?
SCMP tech journalist Xinmei Shen speaks with Vancouver-based correspondent Ian Young about his three years covering Meng Wanzhou, how her court saga irrevocably changed Canada’s relationship with China and what questions remain after Meng and two Canadians were freed; tech desk editor Zhou Xin discusses Huawei’s changing fortunes and how Beijing managed nationalist sentiment around the company exec’s homecoming.
Evergrande debt crisis: China’s ‘Lehman moment’ vs Xi’s ‘Common Prosperity’
Mimi Lau speaks with SCMP reporter Pearl Liu about the background to the US$300 billion debt crisis for China's property giant Evergrande, the warning signs from 2019 and escalating events this year that lead to protests across China. Desk editor Zhou Xin explores how Evergrande is part of China’s economic success story, Beijing’s changing “red lines” and how the capitalist excess of its "Belt Brother” CEO contrasts with Xi Jinping’s “Common Prosperity”.
China's online gaming ban: the players, the parents and an industry reset
SCMP tech journalists Xinmei Shen and Josh Ye analyse the the impact of Beijing's crackdown on online gaming for players under 18. Hear how the ban is driving players to Steam and other servers in the West, how it affects the multi-billion dollar games development industry, and what will come of China's huge esports ecosystem and the desire to become the world's dominant esports nation. Hear the gaming addiction podcast: spoti.fi/3nvMirb
Beyond the Wuhan lab leak theory, Beijing vs zero covid, new MRNA vaccines and a China/US partnership
SCMP reporter Mimi Lau speaks with fellow journalist Simone McCarthy about the call from WHO investigators for a second audit of lab facilities in and around Wuhan, just as US president Joe Biden's deadline for a report into the 'Wuhan lab leak theory' arrives; Cissy Zhou discusses the internal and global economic shockwaves from China's zero Covid strategy and the pushback from those who say China needs to live with the virus; Josephine Ma discusses new MRNA vaccine developments in mainland…
Re: The Huawei Episode
This episode took place in three acts:
Act 1: Repeat the name Huawei over and over again, slowly and carefully. Apparently they are really tired of hearing everyone mispronounce it. I get it, but it still felt like a bit much.
Act 2: Give a little bit of background, mostly by way of telling us that it’s complicated and we don’t know why Trump’s administration seems so butthurt about Huawei. People who should know say it could be used for spying, but won’t tell us how. Maybe it’s not true, or maybe it’s because the US likes to spy and doesn’t like it when the tables are turned.
Act 3: Reluctantly and briefly admit that some people say bad things about Huawei, but quickly move on and talk about how unfair this all is for for the poor, lovely, and admirable pack of wolves that is Huawei.
The whole thing was, like too much of most coverage related to Huawei, very one sided. Often SCMP still manages to do good work, but this is a time when Ma’s ownership (or, perhaps, the implications of the new national security law) seemed to be showing.
Risk of war episode
There is WAY more information available about what’s happening in the South China Sea than what this episode gives. There wasn’t one mention of what the Southeast Asia countries have to say about China’s increasingly aggressive moves in the area.