- CCP as the new (old) shaper of society
- Smart becomes city SUV under China’s influence
- Beijing: “Too many EV companies on the market”
- Is Alipay facing break up?
- Investors protest Evergrande
- Bachelet denounces lack of access to Xinjiang
- Tools: 996 declared illegal – China’s labor law is changing
Beijing’s regulatory frenzy is hitting more and more sectors and areas of life. At first, it looked as if Beijing was merely expanding its control over the economy. But now regulators are also exerting more and more control over the lives of citizens. The CCP is now even restricting private tutoring and online gaming. Ning Wang analyzes: The authorities’ crackdown is meant to strengthen cohesion in society, to make people subordinate to the CCP. Re-education and thought control are back on the agenda.
For many years, the Smart was a rather unusual part of the cityscape: Hardly any other car could be parked crosswise on parking spots. A model for the future in times when ever-larger cars are clogging up cities and parking spaces are becoming scarce? Unfortunately no. The car flopped, its design often mocked as “elephant shoe” or “shopping cart”. Now the brand’s owners – Daimler and Geely – are planning its relaunch. And they’re doing so with a four-meter-long compact SUV, according to Frank Sieren. From a technical aspect, the concept unveiled at the IAA seems convincing. However, instead of taking an example from the success of the world’s best-selling mini e-car, the Wuling Hong Guang Mini EV, Smart is pushing into the highly contested city SUV segment with a new model. The production of affordable electric cars for the masses, on the other hand, is left to the Chinese competitors.
China’s economic rise is based on cheap labor. An army of hundreds of millions of migrant workers has catapulted the People’s Republic into the ranks of the richest countries at a rapid pace in recent decades. In the IT industry, overtime has been the order of the day in recent years, to the point where deaths have been caused by exhaustion. But the state is now cracking down harder on the 996 culture. And wage laborers are also to be better protected from exploitation. Both the judiciary and the government are pushing ahead with the advancement of labor laws. This is what Dezan Shira’s experts talk about in our Tools section today.
Do bans improve morale?
China’s authorities have targeted one economic sector after another with tough regulations in recent months (China.Table reported). But this is only taking place on the surface. The party is also expanding its influence over personal life – the way people live, how they behave, how they spend their free time. This is by no means new. In the first communist era under Mao Zedong, the leadership also wanted to re-educate its citizens and turn them into different people. Since Deng Xiaoping’s reforms, this has since come to an end, and private life has become a private matter once more. Under Xi Jinping, re-education and thought control are back on the political agenda.
At first glance, the regulatory frenzy hardly seems cohesive: Beijing’s authorities are seemingly arbitrarily banning IPOs like Ant’s; elsewhere, delivery drivers are to be given better working conditions (China.Table reported) and heavy fines are being imposed on companies of its tech service industry. And for the past weeks, the tutoring sector has also been heavily affected by regulations.
Regulations, bans and rules are an indication of the path the People’s Republic wants to take under state and party leader Xi. With regulations, he aims to correct the market order, promote fair competition, and protect both consumer rights and the socialist market economy system. This is how the state-run People’s Daily called the government’s approach.