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About China Blog
Jonathan is a co-founder of Trusted Sources. He has a wealth of experience as a writer and commentator on Chinese political, economic and social affairs. He was formerly editor of The South China Morning Post, The Observer and Reuters World Service as well as a senior correspondent for The Economist.
Recent China research
|China Weekly: Car sales improve, but luxury brands face potholes, 21 May 2013|
|Xi fights graft to strengthen the regime, Jonathan Fenby, 21 May 2013|
See all our China research >>
Previous blog posts
China BlogWhat's going on in the world's second biggest economy
Watch the clouds
20 May 2013
For a regime that likes to say it was swept to power by a peasant revolt, China’s Communist leaders has generally given farming a lower priority than industry. The exception was during the early stage of the economic reforms launched by Deng Xiaoping at the end of the 1970s when the household responsibility system introduced the profit motive into the countryside. But against that were the decades of collectivisation and famine under Mao and, more recently, the stress on urbanisation as cities took precedence over the country’s rural expanses and their people.
But, as blue collar...
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China’s food safety – and the trust deficit
7 May 2013
In Guangzhou, a rat is a rat – at least at the restaurant that specializes in serving them, assuring customers that the rodents have all been caught out in the countryside and not trapped in sewers. Elsewhere in China, rat may masquerade as mutton, as shown by the latest food scandal in which, according to police, a 63-strong gang operating in Shanghai and the eastern city of Wuxi bought rats, foxes and minks, processed the meat with additives like gelatin and sold it, passed off as lamb, at country markets without any testing for quality or safety. This came to light as part of a...
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Rising confrontations and the China Dream
2 May 2013
China seems to have gone into overdrive in pressing its regional claims this spring. From the Himalayas to islands off Japan via the South China Sea, Beijing is involved in confrontations with its neighbours. These confrontations are not going away; they show every sign of escalating. Some commentators have portrayed this as adventurism on the part of local commanders of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). That seems unlikely. The new Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, may not approve of every action or reaction but he certainly keeps a general grip on policy through the relevant Politburo...
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China’s regional policy dilemma deepens
10 Apr 2013
As the senior voice in formulating China’s foreign policy, Xi Jinping has had two things to say publicly since becoming President of the People’s Republic last month.
Xi speaks. On his first foreign trip after being appointed to the presidency, the state post that complements his leadership of the Communist Party, he told an audience in Moscow on 23 March, “We must respect the right of each country in the world to independently choose its path of development and oppose interference in the internal affairs of other countries.” Two weeks later, speaking at the annual session of the...
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