Category Archives: News

09/12 Briefs

Macau explains AmCham ban: Macau’s security chief, Wong Sio-chak, said the city did not bar two leaders of the American Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong from entering Macau on Saturday for any other reason than “safety risks and threats”. Read more on SCMP.

Evergrande reports: Property developer China Evergrande Group, which plans to become the world’s largest electric car maker, has declared a record dividend of 1.42 yuan per share totalling 18.7 billion yuan for fiscal year 2018. Read more on Bloomberg.

Huawei opens source: Huawei’s homegrown system HarmonyOS, or Hongmeng, unveiled in August after losing access to Google apps and services under US restrictions, would open its source code for outside developers by next August, said Wang Chenglu, president of Huawei’s consumer business software on Sunday. Read more in Chinese.

Zhongshan 5G construction: China Mobile’s Zhongshan branch has signed agreements to cooperate with the country’s three leading smartphone makers, Huawei, Vivo and Oppo, in an effort to construct a comprehensive 5G network by the year end, covering major business districts and industrial parks in the city. Read more in Chinese.

GBA Briefs: 6/12/2019

HK-Thai digital currency: The Hong Kong Monetary Authority and Bank of Thailand are working to launch a two-tier digital currency, in a bid to facilitate the cross-border wholesale payment between banks and companies of the two sides through blockchain technology. The first tier involves issuing tokens to Hong Kong banks and the second involves distribution of tokens to companies. Read more on SCMP.

HKIA ambitious: Ambitious targets have been set for Hong Kong International Airport under the GBA plan – passenger growth from 75m to 120m, and tonnes of cargo doubling to 10 million by 2035, plus a third runway and commercial space of 4.1 million sq ft. This is despite the ongoing social unrest. Read more on SCMP.

Hengqin hospital: A new hospital opened yesterday on Hengqin island featuring 300 beds and experts deployed from the city’s public hospital. It is aimed at Macau residents in the special economic zone. Read more in Chinese.

GBA info: A new information platform has been launched to provide data on the economy and other issues, managed jointly by Hong Kong, Macau and Guangdong. Read more in Chinese. 

Guangdong rural economy: Guangdong plans to invest 9.6 billion yuan to boost its underdeveloped rural areas, with 8,526 enterprises in the province already partnered with 6,390 villages. Read more in Chinese.

GBA Briefs: 5/12/2019

Zhuhai CPI: Zhuhai’s CPI rose 1.1% in October and 3.7% YoY. The price of food, tobacco and wine surged by 14.3% YoY, leading to an impact of 4.54 percentage points on the overall CPI increase. Pork prices rose 17% from September. Read more in Chinese.

GBA focus for Macau: Macau should keep its eyes on the 56,000 sq km of land of the GBA rather than its own 33 sq km of land, says Macau’s newly appointed Finance and Economy Secretary Lei Wai Nong, while also highlighting the need for risk assessment. Read more in Chinese. 

Hengqin app: Alibaba has launched an app together with the Hengqin government, providing cross-border services for Macau residents going across to the special economic zone. It includes details on immigration procedures, as well as being a guide to the area. Read more in Chinese.

Huawei hits back: Huawei Technologies has filed a legal challenge against the decision of the US Federal Communications Commission to ban US wireless carriers from using government funds to buy Huawei products. Read more on Caixin.

Hengqin Port on track: The new Hengqin Port featuring joint checkpoints of mainland and Macau Customs and Immigration will open as scheduled on December 20, initially only for passengers, while cars and trucks will be able to pass through before the end of next year. Photos of the station’s interiors have been released by local media. Read more in Chinese.

GBA Briefs: 4/12/2019

Macau tourism: Macau is expected to be the third-most visited city in the world in 2019, welcoming some 20.6 million overnight visitors, according to the report released by global market research company Euromonitor International. Read more on Macau Daily Times.

Nansha open for cruises: The Nansha Cruise Terminal started operations on November 17. It is expected to bring a surge of tourism to the district, and the region, as super-sized cruise vessels are now able to dock there. Read more in Chinese and read our previous briefing.

Jiangmen welcomes foreign talents: Jiangmen established the first “overseas talent station” in Guangdong on Tuesday. Its aim is to allow foreign talent to “deeply experience the cultural landscape and local customs of Jiangmen”. Read more in Chinese.

Zhuhai airport expansion: Construction of a second terminal at the Zhuhai International Airport started on Sunday. With a budget of nearly five billion yuan, the expansion project, due to be completed in 2023, is a major component of the western GBA’s development plans. Read more in Chinese and read our previous briefing.

Guangdong water diversion: Construction of the largest water-diversion project in Guangdong has seen 2.12 billion yuan of investment completed out of the planned 35.4 billion yuan since it began in May. The project will transfer water from Xijiang, or West River, to Guangzhou, Dongguan and Shenzhen, to address chronic water shortages. Read more in Chinese and read our previous briefing.

03/12 GBA Briefs

GBA talents see cross-border hurdles: Higher education institutions are generally satisfied with the cross-border flow of talents in the region, but hurdles are still there, including the incomplete qualification system of teachers and course credits, and fragmented cooperation between scientific research institutions. Read more in Chinese.

Tourists to Macau slump: The number of package tour visitors to Macau recorded a decline of 35.3% year-on-year in October, with those from Hong Kong falling by 42.5%, according to the latest official data. Read more on Macau Daily Times.

Further decline in casino revenues: The gross gaming revenue of casinos in Macau has dropped 8.5% year-on-year in November, totalling 22.88 billion patacas, according to official data. Read more on Macau News.

Macau firms in Hengqin: Macau companies invested in Hengqin grew nearly 50% this year, and now total 2,030, according to official data. Read more (in Chinese).

Macau changes explained: Macau’s new Chief Executive, Ho Iat Seng, held a press conference yesterday to unveil his new Cabinet appointments, at which he explained it was not easy to choose new faces, especially for the important roles of finance and culture secretaries. Read more on Macau Daily Times.

Gree stake sale: Zhuhai-based home appliance giant Gree Electric is to sell 15% if its stake to Zhuhai Mingjun Investment Partnership, a private equity firm backed by Hillhouse Capital Group, leading to a change in ownership of China’s largest air conditioner maker, according to a notice issued on Monday. The sale price was not disclosed. Read more on Caixin.

Hong Kong sweeteners: Hong Kong will soon roll out a fourth round of relief measures targeting businesses and other battered sectors, and addressing unemployment, Chief Executive Carrie Lam said, in a bid to offset the 2% GDP loss due to ongoing social unrest. Read more on SCMP.

GBA Briefs: 28/11/2019

SenseTime leads facial recognition standards: The central government has set up a working group, led by Hong Kong-based AI unicorn Sensetime, to draw up national standards on facial recognition technology. The group also comprises Tencent, Xiaomi, Ant Financial, Ping An, Dahua and iFlytek. Read more on Caixin.

Lufax moves to consumer finance: Lufax Holding, the Shanghai-based online lending platform controlled by Ping An Insurance, has been approved to establish a consumer finance business, as the company cut down its P2P lending business amid regulatory crackdown since this July. Read more on Caixin.

Fintech in Hong Kong: Hong Kong’s government has “not been bold enough” in financial technology in the city, said Chan Ka-keung, chairman of WeLab and former Secretary for Financial Services. The city will have difficulty maintaining its position as a global financial center if it just relies on the talents from GBA, especially Shenzhen, he added. Read more on SCMP.

GBA Briefs: 27/11/2019

Macau youth in Hengqin: The Macau government says more than 250 of its young entrepreneurs have set up businesses in the Greater Bay Area so far this year, most of which were established in the Hengqin special economic zone. Read more (in Chinese)

Shenzhen-Shantou Highway: With some 30 billion yuan invested, the western part of the highway linking Shenzhen and Shantou will be expanded from four lanes to eight, allowing for the maximum speed to be raised from 100km/h to 120km/h. Read more (in Chinese).
Home-lending suspended: The Shenzhen branches of two state-owned commercial banks, China Construction Bank and Bank of China, have halted mortgage lending since November 18, citing shortage of household credit quotas granted by the central government. The move came a month after the Shenzhen-headquartered commercial bank Ping An stopped issuing mortgage loans in the city. Read more on Caixin.
Huawei new tablet: Huawei has launched a new tablet, the MatePad Pro, powered by the homegrown processor Kirin 990, in a bid to reduce its dependence on US technology, though last week the telecom giant was allowed to resume some component sales with US suppliers. Read more on Caixin.

GBA Briefs: 26/11/2019

Xi’s Macau break: President Xi Jinping is apparently going to have a relatively long stay in Macau for its 20th Anniversary celebrations. He is believed to be flying in on December 18 and presiding over the event on December 20. Read more on Macau Daily Times.

Alibaba surges: Alibaba Group saw a 6.6% leap in its share price on the first day of trading in Hong Kong today, closing at HK$187.6. It became the city’s largest IPO by raising HK$101.2 billion. Read more on SCMP.

Dongguan urban renewal: Dongguan is looking to step up its urban renewal process, encouraging developers to undertake more of such projects by reducing their costs, providing special subsidies and shortening approval time. Read more in Chinese.

Guangzhou tops for lifts: Guangzhou ranks first among Chinese cities in terms of the number of old buildings installed with elevators. The city alone accounts for 40% of the elevator-equipped old buildings in China. Read more in Chinese.

Top judge weighs in; justice minister is MIA

Geoffrey Ma, Hong Kong’s Chief Justice, waited awhile but eventually spoke up on the issue of judicial independence. Although he did not directly address the National People’s Congress Standing Committee’s remarks, made last week, he made clear that he was taking a stand against anyone who sought to challenge the judiciary’s independence. It took him five days to do so, but supporters of the rule of law will undoubtedly say it was better late than never.

Continue reading Top judge weighs in; justice minister is MIA

GBA Briefs: 25/11/2019

Megvii IPO: Chinese AI startup Megvii Technology, which was blacklisted by the US government, is “fielding additional queries” from HKEx before its upcoming IPO in Hong Kong. Read more on Bloomberg.

Portuguese tie-up in GBA: Hong Kong conglomerate King Wai Group has acquired BNI Europa, a Portuguese-based digital bank, with an eye on cross-border digital financial services in the GBA. It plans to open a branch in Macau, Zhuhai, Shenzhen or Guangzhou and another in Southeast Asia. Read more on SCMP.

Nanshan boosts subsidies: Shenzhen’s Nanshan district, home to a number of China’s tech giants, could provide financial support for projects located in the district of up to 10 million yuan. Read more in Chinese.

Guangzhou eases home-buying curbs: Non-hukou holders in Guangzhou can provide proof of payment of either social security or income tax in order to secure permission to buy homes, in a move to better meet the housing demands from non-residents in the city. Read more in Chinese.