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The Daily Brief for Thursday, 11 May 2017

China-Ireland match-fixing scandal: A small Irish town sits caught in a sprawling web of match-fixing allegations, irregular player trades and unusual club buyouts across Asia, Africa and Europe. Richard Cook and Liu Hsiu Wen report how a leading sports integrity expert says at the heart of this corrupt web is Fifa agent Mao Xiaodong, whose tracks can be found across the globe and even traced to Dalian Shide, the team of jailed tycoon Xu Ming.

CPC’s golden rules: In the Name of the People, that charts a prosecutor’s efforts to unearth corruption in the fictional province of Handong, is currently the hottest drama on Chinese television. Lin Wanxia explains how the show’s success is down to an intriguing narrative explanation of the five written rules that guide success and failure at the highest tiers of the Communist Party.

Thailand’s restive regions: The bombing of a superstore majority owned by one of Thailand’s largest conglomerates, signals an escalation of a conflict the ruling junta has failed to resolve. Jason Johnson writes that the bombing in the southern Thai town of Pattani shows, despite years of counter-insurgency operations and ramped up security measures, the grinding conflict will not be solved through military means alone.

Australia’s punitive budget: Foreign buyers of property in Australia will be punished with a so-called ghost tax if they fail to occupy or lease their homes for at least six months. Daniel Hurst writes that the measures were announced in a budget that also includes a levy on the country’s biggest banks and are seen as part of a populist pitch to restore the fortunes of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s center-right government.

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Posted inChinaEuropean UnionHong KongShanghaiWorld

China Digest for Thursday, 11 May 2017

Control on state-owned shareholders’ activities eased: Sasac

Sasac will stop directly regulating the activities of listed companies’ state-owned shareholders, the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission said in a document redefining its supervisory role on the State Council website.

State Council to support information services business

Reducing the cost of internet services, and supporting research and development into digital household products and virtual reality equipment will help upgrade the information services business, China Finance Information said, citing a State Council meeting.

Country to develop border provinces: Li Keqiang

Premier Li Keqiang approved a 13th Five-Year Plan to promote prosperity and stability of the border provinces and ethnic groups in a State Council meeting on Wednesday, the Securities Daily reported. Improvements in infrastructure, education, healthcare and employment are among the goals.

Obor nations see 10% trade growth with China

A research report shows that Mideast and European countries have seen around 10% growth in bilateral trade with China last year from the One Belt, One Road (Obor) initiative. Total imports and exports reached 6.25 trillion yuan in 2016, increasing 0.5% year on year. China’s direct investment in the Obor countries stood at US$14.5 billion.

2016 enterprise annuity replacement rate reached 67%

Officials revealed that the replacement rate of enterprise annuities reached 67% last year and experts suggest the development of a voluntary pension scheme would ease the burden on companies and the government, the National Business Daily said.

PBOC continues to drain liquidity from the interbank market

The People’s Bank of China issued 157.6 billion yuan worth of pledged supplementary lending and reverse repos on May 10, Sina Finance reported. Net withdrawals from the interbank market stood at 32.4 billion yuan.

Three state-owned banks’ units to invest in debt-for-equity

Subsidiaries of the Construction Bank, Agricultural Bank, and Industrial and Commercial Bank to invest 12 billion yuan, 10 billion yuan and 12 billion yuan into debt-for-equity business, respectively, Caixin reported.

‘Bond Connect’ may be announced soon: Li Xiaojia

After the launch of the Stock Connect schemes with the Shanghai and Shenzhen bourses, Hong Kong Stock Exchange Chief Executive Li Xiaojia says a Bond Connect plan will be announced soon, allowing foreign funds to buy mainland domestic bonds, and vice versa, Sina Finance reported.

Nanjing eases restrictions on highly educated homebuyers

Homebuyers in Nanjing who are under the age of 40, have a masters degree, or is a senior technician only need to provide a signed labor contract instead of tax and social security certificates, Caixin reported. It is the first time since September 25 the province eased its rules.

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