Interview with Michael Kahn-Ackermann + No trade subsidies for VW in Xinjiang + Corporations press for carbon reductions
Human rights should be given "greater weight in German economic policy," Robert Habeck declared in a recent interview. To prove how serious he is, the German Minister of Economics wants to make an example of VW. The German automaker is to be denied investment guarantees for its plant in Urumqi, citing human rights violations in Xinjiang. "We cannot guarantee projects in the Xinjiang region in view of forced labor and mistreatment of Uyghurs," Habeck said. This move would be a first and would also affect other German companies such as BASF, writes Finn Mayer-Kuckuk. The Chinese, however, will not leave the push uncommented: The involvement of foreign companies in Xinjiang holds great symbolic value for Beijing.
In an attempt to meet their climate goals, European companies in China are under pressure. According to a new study by the European Chamber of Commerce in China, 46 percent of companies surveyed reported that they had already begun decarbonizing their local operations in the People's Republic. But the environment for swift enforcement remains difficult and intransparent, writes Christiane Kuehl. The Chinese energy mix still includes not enough renewables. In addition, there is a lack of open markets, common standards, and awareness of the climate crisis at the provincial level.
Her diary from a sealed-off city made Fang Fang world-famous – and shunned in her home country. Yet even before the "Wuhan Diary," the writer had described true-to-life stories from everyday life in China. Her stories always focus on compassion and empathy for people who otherwise have no voice, Fang Fang's translator Michael Kahn-Ackermann tells Ning Wang in today's interview. Fang Fang's latest novel "Wuetendes Feuer" is another mirror of Chinese society. Set in the 1990s, it depicts the epochal changes that continue to shape the country and its leading Party to this day.