Nǐhǎo, Comrade Macron: Xi Jinping was among the first world leaders to congratulate French President-elect, Emmanuel Macron, and it could be the start of a beautiful relationship… if the Chinese media is to be believed. Lin Wanxia writes that Chinese commentators have eagerly introduced Macron as a keen student of modern Chinese history with a deep interest in Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping.
OBOR or bust: Beijing says 47 state-owned enterprises have participated in 1,676 projects in three years of One Belt, One Road initiatives, reports Asia Times. As growth in China’s economy slows, the success of the OBOR programs – and the role of state-owned industries within them – are increasingly important to Beijing.
Fake news, Asian-style: Governments across Southeast Asia are increasingly labeling critical reporting as fake news, opening the way for even more censorship and regulation of the news. David Hutt writes that regional governments have struggled to put censorship controls onto fast-growing online media outlets but the fake news claims are now providing the perfect crackdown excuse.
Bollywood to Beijing: Aamir Khan’s film Dangal, the story of a wrestler whose two daughters grow up to be wrestling champions, launched in early 2017 and quickly became the biggest ever Indian film. Russell Edwards reports that the film has just opened in China and, with an impressive weekend box office take of US$11.2 million, has made it to the No.2 spot in the country’s movie charts.
Facebook, Asia crash! The world’s largest social media site, Facebook, was down in large parts of Asia, Australia and North America on Tuesday morning and twitter was also down in Hong Kong, reports Johan Nylander. The Facebook crash reportedly locked users out of applications which are linked to it via automatic login, including Tinder, Netflix, Instagram and numerous e-commerce and fitness apps.