Also in this week’s issue

News roundup

  • Zhao Changpeng, founder and CEO of Binance, the world’s largest virtual currency exchange, is the richest ethnic Chinese with a net worth of more than $90 billion, claims Caijing. The magazine based its calculation on his 30% stake in Binance, but excluded Zhao’s personal holding in Bitcoin and Binance Coin.
  • The European Commission has launched its Global Gateway project, hoping to mobilise €300 billion ($339 billion) for infrastructure investment around the world by 2027. The plan is seen as a response to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which some Western countries see as a means for China to influence developing nations.
  • Poly Development has announced plans to raise up to Rmb24.3 billion ($3.7 billion), Securities Daily reported. The state-backed real estate developer will generate Rmb19.8 billion of the funds by selling asset-backed securities, as well as issuing new corporate debt. It recently sold Rmb4.5 billion worth of medium-term notes. “Regulatory polices over fundraising appear to be loosening,” the newspaper noted.
  • Electric appliance maker Midea said that it will buy the 5% stake in the industrial robotics firm Kuka that it doesn’t already own. If the purchase goes through, Midea will take the Augsburg-based firm off the Frankfurt stock exchange. Kuka’s market value was about $3.4 billion as of this week. According to 36Kr.com, Kuka may then go public again on a Chinese bourse.
  • Douglas Hsu, chairman of the Taiwanese conglomerate Far Eastern Group, offered his support for the “One China” principle and opposed the idea of Taiwan independence. Hsu’s company was fined up to Rmb475 million ($75 million) late last month for business violations in mainland China. “Like most Taiwanese, I hope that cross-Strait relations maintain the status quo,” the tycoon wrote in an op-ed in Taiwan’s United Daily News.
  • Smartphone maker Xiaomi said it will build its first electric car plant in Beijing. The factory, capable of producing 300,000 cars a year, will be constructed in two phases in the Beijing Economic and Technological Development Zone in the Daxing district. Xiaomi said in March it was going to invest Rmb10 billion in a new EV division over the next decade.
  • 72 The number of Chinese billionaires who have died in the last eight years, according to China Daily. Of these 15 were murdered, 17 committed suicide, 14 were executed and seven died in accidents. A fortunate 19 of the group died from natural causes.
  • 15% The one-day decline in e-commerce giant Pinduoduo’s share price after it reported its latest results last week. Third-quarter sales of Rmb21.5 billion disappointed investors, coming in lower than earlier quarters in the year. Around 876 million shoppers were reported to have used the platform this year.
  • Rmb180,000 Per capita GDP of Karamay in Xinjiang, which ranks it as China’s highest (surpassing Beijing at Rmb164,900 per person). Residents also enjoy by far the highest per capita disposable income in China at Rmb47,000 ($7,380). Karamay was founded in 1958 as an oil town and has a population of 490,398. In 2020 its oil output was 13.2 million tonnes and it produced 3.63 billion cubic metres of natural gas. The petrochemical industry makes up 90% of the local economy, although city planners are trying to boost other areas of activity to diversify Karamay’s sources of growth, including a major promotion of the tourism sector, according to Phoenix News.
  • 1 billion kilowatts China’s accumulated installed capacity of renewable energy power production. That is a doubling of the figure in 2015, according to the National Energy Administration.

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