Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Hong Kong news 20 October

Once again I don't have The Standard so I am getting my news fix from the South China Morning post again. So we're YAY GO BEIJING today.

Notoriously yo-yo relations between China and Japan are at a low once again after a Japanese foreign minister called China's reaction to having one of its boat crews in disputed waters arrested, "hysterical". Ma Zhaoxu, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry said "it is in the fundamental interests of both countries to improve ... Sino-Japanese relations, but Japanese leaders' remarks obviously run counter to that." To sum up just how some Japanese feel about China, former Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe compared China's assertiveness over disputed territories to Hitler and how he flitted around Europe pinching that parts which he reckoned belonged to Germany. There have also recently been nationalist protests in both countries, where they broke a whole lot of stuff made in the other country. It's like pre-school politics. This article does blame Japan for everything though as it is in the one-eyed SCMP.

Hopes of political reform in China have been dashed for the time being as the Communist Party plenum (what I assume is a conference) just finished without mention of reform. Oh, except for this statement in a communique saying it wold make "active but steady efforts to promote political restructuring" with no detail whatsoever. Wen Jiabao, China's Prime Minster who has long been a proponent of reform must be disappointed. Well, that's kinda what happens when you're in the government of a Communist Party, eh? Zwelenzima Vavi, take note. You can't always influence things from the inside.

Hainan and Guangdong province on the Chinese mainland are undergoing mass evacuations as Hurricane Megi, fresh from killing 13 people in the Philippines, is en route there. Hong Kong could feel some of the effects of the giant storm, but the worst seems like it will bypass. There's a great pic in the paper of all the fishing boats parked in the harbour on Hainan island, but it's not on the SCMP site for me to pinch.

A second executive from Octopus Holdings has quit following the privacy scandal I mentioned yesterday. The executive, Lincoln Leong Kwok-kuen, is pretending that he was going to stand down anyway, but we know he is talking out of his arse because in August he told everyone that he was so amped to stay on.

The quality of air in Hong Kong is pretty awful due to all the industry in the city and the southern mainland. Yet loads of people think it is the plethora of taxis in Hong Kong that are major contributors, due to them never switching their cars off while waiting because of the constant need for an air conditioner here. Well some chap, Eric Wong, has designed some gadget which involves putting a battery beneath the driver's seat to counteract this, and the greenies are all happy about it.

(I know this is not news) British Airways are advertsing a return business class ticket from Hong Kong to London from HK$36 720 which is about R33 000. I was pretty sure this is more expensive than a Johannesburg-London business class ticket, odd, considering I thought LHR-HKG would be a far more competitive route. So I checked. And I was right, but only by about R2000.

The Employers Federation, allegedly the voice of employers on Hong Kong, has advised businesses to "share the good times with workers" and give them a 2.5%-3.5% pay rise, the highest recommendation in 13 years. Fat chance. They have to give the board a 300% pay increase first in many cases. Pfffft.

"Cleanup ordered at dilapidated gatehouse" is a real headline today. I swear to god. I am still getting used to some of the banality of news in countries where there is no crime.

Chelsea Football Club have confirmed that they will enter the Asia Cup again next season as part of their pre-season fixture set. Other teams invited will be Aston Villa (the cunts who held us over the weekend. Sorry, if you're sensitve I meant c***s), Blackburn Rovers and the winners of the Hong Kong league.

Nothing else really happened in Hong Kong sport. Not much does. There is a football report but it doesn't say where the clubs are from.

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