China Business Briefs 19/11/13

New home prices in China’s four major cities rose the most since January 2011, raising concerns of a bubble as home buyers were emboldened by a lack of new nationwide property curbs.

New home prices in October jumped 21 percent from a year earlier in the southern city of Guangzhou and 20 percent in nearby Shenzhen, 18 percent in Shanghai and 16 percent in Beijing, the National Bureau of Statistics said in a statement today. Prices rose in 69 of the 70 cities tracked by the government.

China’s Communist party seeks dividends from reforms – FT.com

Even if many details are still lacking and implementation will be tricky, many now believe Mr Xi’s administration is ready to get its hands dirty on long-delayed economic policies, from enforcing a property tax to opening state-controlled sectors to private capital.

That has put analysts in an almost uniformly positive mood about China’s long-term growth prospects. Their sense of optimism has also spread to investors, with the Shanghai Composite,

Plenum Document Gives Experts in Energy Industry Reason for Hope

Among the 60 tasks the party said it wanted to accomplish by 2020 was establishing market-oriented pricing systems for water, crude oil, natural gas, electricity, transportation and telecoms. The government “will give the market the right to set prices” and only keep controls on prices for public utilities and services, the document said.

These statements are the cause for hope that long-stagnant price reforms in the power industry can be achieved. Experts see these steps on prices as key if progress is to be made on overall reform of energy industries. The country’s wholesale power prices and tariffs for residential and industrial usage are set by the National Development and Reform Commission, China’s top economic planner.

Real estate taxes to be developed – BUSINESS – Globaltimes.cn

China will speed up legislation for tax collection in the real estate sector, according to specific reform plans released Friday by the Communist Party of China (CPC) following the four-day plenum, an important step to let the property market run in a healthy way, rather than merely suppressing home prices, analysts said Sunday.Media reports over the weekend, following the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee, speculated that the legislation could include the long-expected property tax, which might help to cool down the over-heated real estate market.

Most developed countries have done it, and now so will China — boost GDP growth through an accounting change. The National Statistics Bureau says wants to use market values for assets such as land and property values when calculating gross domestic product. It also says it wants to bring its calculations more in line with international practice. That most likely means that research and development and other intangible assets will no longer be regarded as a mere expense, but will be transmogrified into an investment.

China Blueprint Sidesteps State-Sector Reform – China Real Time Report – WSJ

China’s ambitious plans to overhaul its economic model, unveiled in a 20-page document on Friday, won praise as a blueprint for building more sustainable foundations for the country’s growth model.

A question mark, though, hangs over what the government plans to do with the powerful state-owned sector, economists said Monday as they poured over the implications of the document.

Reality Check: Chinese Developers Unconvinced By Housing Curbs | MNI

BEIJING (MNI) – Signs that big city governments are finally ready to act to cool demand for housing in China haven’t fazed real estate developers, who still don’t believe the government has what it takes to bring order to the runaway property market.

Some hope lies in signs the new Chinese leadership may be willing to institute fundamental reform of the country’s land use system to put the housing market on a more solid, sustainable footing. But the statement released following a key Communist Party meeting here shed little light on how much reform the government is willing or able to implement.

Companies

One of Chinas biggest online retailers, Jingdong, will acquire internet Shanghai-based advertising technology and service provider MediaV for $700 million, according to Techweb. The report comes from “insiders” and has not been confirmed by the companies.

Techweb says, of China’s top 50 e-commerce sites, 80 percent are MediaV customers including Jingdong.

The four-year-old MediaV started out with an ad network, then evolved to create a demand side platform. It employs 500 people and has branches spread across seven major cities in China.

Credit-Driven China Glut Threatens Surge Into Bank Crisis – Bloomberg

China’s biggest banks are already affected, tripling the amount of bad loans they wrote off in the first half of this year and cleaning up their books ahead of what may be a fresh wave of defaults. Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd. and its four largest competitors expunged 22.1 billion yuan of debt that couldn’t be collected through June, up from 7.65 billion yuan a year earlier, regulatory filings show.

“In the next three to four years, industries with excess capacity will be the main source of credit loss for banks and their nonperforming loans as China cleans up the legacy,” said Liao Qiang, a Beijing-based director at Standard & Poor’s. “The speed of the process will depend on the government’s determination and whether they are willing to incur short-term pain for long-term gain.”

The latest scandal surrounding WeChat in China concerns one of the app’s defining features: ‘People Nearby’. Tapping this function returns a list of other users within vicinity. This flirty and oftentimes creepy feature is being used by prostitutes to find and turn tricks, according to CCTV, China’s state broadcaster.

Sexual solicitation on Chinese social networks isn’t anything new, but what really enraged audiences in this report was a survey among of school students that revealed they had come across the prostitutes’ accounts when encountering nearby people within WeChat. CCTV reporters in Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and Hangzhou all conducted surveys and confirmed the trend.

Further adding fuel to the fire is the fact that the journalists claimed to have reported six of the accounts in question to Tencent, but they were still active as of press time.

Xiaomi to Open 18 Flagship Retail Stores by Year End

Xiaomi’s new strategy for public relations is label it as an Amazon-style company instead of China’s Apple, — Lei Jun, co-founder and CEO of Xiaomi, said in an interview with Reuters that the difference lies in the fact his company mainly makes money from Internet services instead of hardware. However, the company is still on its way to finishing the mission of establishing an Apple business model in China: opening retail stores.

Xiaomi is to open 18 flagship retail stores by the end of this year, co-founder Li Wanqiang told Yicai on Nov. 18th at the opening ceremony of Xiaomi Shanghai store.

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – China Mobile International, a unit of China Mobile, has launched an application it hopes will win business from millions of overseas Chinese and others communicating with China.

The app, Jego, allows anyone outside China with an Android or iOS smartphone and a data connection to receive free incoming calls on a China Mobile number, if they have one, or via a rented number if they don’t. They can also make cheap international calls using the app.

China Reshapes Landscape for Firms From Alibaba to GM – Bloomberg

China’s planned economic reforms are poised to reshape the competitive landscape, allowing private companies such as Alibaba Group Holdings Inc. to compete with state-owned banks, and easing the one-child policy to bolster demand for products from Nestle SA (NESN) to General Motors Co. (GM)
Plans to change the nation’s financial sector include a new registration system for initial public offerings and allowing qualified private investors to set up small-to-medium sized banks. Tencent Holdings Ltd. (700)Asia’s biggest Internet company, is part of a group applying for a banking license in China.

Posted from Diigo.

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