Also in this week’s issue

News roundup

  • Commodity prices in China tumbled on Thursday after the National Development and Reform Commission vowed to clamp down on speculative trading in thermal coal. After a meeting with the country’s major coal producers, the economic planning agency said it would make “full use of all the necessary means” stipulated in the Price Law to keep coal prices stable.
  • Huawei has teamed up with state-owned giant Power Construction Corp to win what is believed to be the world’s largest energy storage project in Saudi Arabia. With 1,300 MWh in capacity, the facility is one of the new energy projects set to power Neom city, a smart city envisaged as the centrepiece of the Saudi Vision 2030 initiative, Shanghai Securities News said.
  • Ericsson is planning to scale back its operations in China after reporting a significant drop in revenue contribution from its biggest market to 3% from 11% in the third quarter. The decline was shaped by retaliatory action against Sweden’s block on Huawei selling 5G gear in the Scandinavian country, Reuters reported.
  • hina Evergrande’s debt woes are unlikely to trigger a systemic financial crisis in China, according to a report published by the central bank. The property firm has amassed liabilities of more than $300 billion but only a third of them are debts to the financial sector, so the spillover impact should be controllable, central bank governor Yi Gang also told an industry forum.
  • Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma has headed off to Spain for a vacation on his $200 million yacht Zen, Hong Kong magazine East Week reports. Ma flew to Europe on his private jet along with a few of his “billionaire friends”, following a brief stay in Hong Kong where he had a tight schedule of dinner gatherings, the magazine said. Other newspapers picked up on the same holiday, seeing significance in Ma’s first overseas trip since the proposed IPO of his fintech firm Ant Group created a crisis with Chinese regulators last November.
  • China tested a nuclear-capable hypersonic missile in August that flew through space and circled the Earth before cruising down to a target that it narrowly missed, the Financial Times has reported. A spokesman for the Chinese foreign ministry refuted the claims, saying this was just “a routine test of a space vehicle” aimed at reducing the costs of space travel.
  • 19.6% Year-on-year jump in foreign direct investment in mainland China in the first nine months of the year, reaching Rmb860 billion ($129 billion), said the Ministry of Commerce. In US dollar terms, the increase is 25.2%. Inflows into advanced technology recorded a 29% rise.
  • 27 Number of major Chinese cities (out of 70) reporting rising prices for new homes in September, the lowest since February last year. Average prices across the 70 cities fell 0.08% from a month ago, Bloomberg calculated, in the first drop in more than six years.
  • 73% Surge in worldwide deliveries by Tesla in the three months to September versus a year ago, hitting 241,300 units. More than 55% of the total was shipped from its Shanghai Gigafactory. Highlighting China as its main export hub, Tesla reported a record profit of $1.62 billion for the quarter, more than quadrupling last year’s figure.
  • 24 million Number of people using Zepp Health’s smart wearables globally. Formally Huami Corp, the Hefei-based firm is the fourth largest smartwatch vendor by shipments, dominating in markets such as Brazil, Russia and Spain. Second quarter sales rose 61% to Rmb1.8 billion ($279 million).

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