2008年2月29日 星期五

the countries of South-East Asia lagged

Business in South-East Asia

The tigers that lost their roar

From The Economist print edition

Other emerging economies are producing world-class companies by the dozen. Why aren't the countries of South-East Asia?

Illustration by James Fryer

IT IS easy to forget, now that China and India are all the rage, that until ten years ago South-East Asia was the world's fastest-developing region, winning the sort of investor attention and breathless column inches that the two new giants now enjoy. The region has, slowly, recovered from the blight of 1997-98. It has recently had several years of strong growth (see chart 1) and its governments' finances have been greatly improved. Even so, after all this time the region's five main economies—Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand—are still notable for the near-absence of companies that could truly be called world-class.

The region has 570m people and had a head start in economic development over much of the rest of Asia. So why does it still have no global consumer brands of the stature of South Korea's Samsung and LG? Where are its rising technology leaders, like Taiwan's AU Optronics and Taiwan Semiconductor? Where are its equivalents of India's world-conquering Tata Steel, Ranbaxy and Wipro? Or China's market-devouring Huawei and Lenovo? Ask an investor in London or New York to name globally respected South-East Asian firms and the answer is unlikely to consist of much more than Singapore Airlines.

In a recent book, “Asian Godfathers”, Joe Studwell, a journalist, examines this failure in stark terms. The region's business scene, he says, remains dominated by old-fashioned, mediocre, sprawling conglomerates, run at the whims of ageing patriarchal owners. These firms' core competence, such as it is, is exploiting their cosy connections with governing elites. Their profits come from rent-seeking: being handed generous state contracts and concessions, or using their sway with officialdom to keep potential competitors out. If they need technology, they buy it from abroad. As a result, Mr Studwell says, the region has “no indigenous, large-scale companies producing world-class products and services.”

Similar things were once said of much of the rest of Asia—and sometimes still are. But somehow other countries' top businesses, even in India, the home of the licence Raj, have escaped this mediocrity trap. Whereas the export-led growth of South Korea and Taiwan comes mainly from indigenous firms making globally competitive goods with their own technology, much of South-East Asia's high-value exports are made by foreign companies. Thailand has built a successful motor industry by attracting multinationals. But it will constantly suffer the risk that these will move to somewhere like China, with lower costs and a bigger home market.

Look under the bonnet of what seems to be a well managed, local industrial firm in South-East Asia, such as Astra, an Indonesian carmaker, and you find that it is assembling Japanese cars under licence and is controlled by a Hong Kong group. Not many have got far beyond serving the home market. A recent study by the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) of the 100 largest multinationals from emerging economies (a category that excludes Singapore) contained only five from the whole region. By contrast there were 13 just from Brazil, which has only a third of South-East Asia's population and which until about a decade ago had no genuinely global firms to speak of (see chart 2).

Class distinctions

To be counted as world-class, a firm needs to be more than just well run and large. It should have a globally valued brand, or its own leading-edge technology, or a genuinely innovative and admired business method. These are demanding standards: even some of those in BCG's top 100 are really just plain big. In South-East Asia few companies meet them. Some come close, especially in Singapore, the region's most advanced country. Singapore Airlines is the world's fourth-largest international carrier and is perhaps the region's best-known brand around the world. Keppel and SembCorp, the world's two largest makers of offshore oil drilling-rigs, dominate their industry.

However, some of Singapore's tech stars are showing signs of fading, worries Garry Evans, an equity strategist at HSBC. Chartered Semiconductor and Creative, for example, are slipping behind rivals in places like Taiwan, which now has “a critical mass in technology and a very entrepreneurial culture,” he says.

In banking, the region has some impressive contenders, like Singapore's OCBC and Malaysia's Public Bank, which are expanding beyond their borders. But now these must contend with China's huge and increasingly muscle-flexing banks as well as Western ones with deep roots in the region, such as HSBC and Standard Chartered. As in other types of business, the region's local champions lack scale in a world where critical mass seems to matter ever more.

Admittedly, the region has some natural handicaps. The ten members of the Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) have a huge variety of languages, religions, political systems and histories. Even the most populous member, Indonesia, with 230m people, is itself enormously diverse, being made up of 17,000 islands and a rainbow assortment of cultural and religious traditions. By comparison, Brazilians may dance the forró in the north and the samba in the south, but theirs is a pretty homogeneous and monolingual country of 190m, all on one land mass.

That said, ASEAN's leaders could do much more to keep their lofty promises of European-style economic integration, to give local companies a sizeable home market from which to build world-beating businesses. Their failure to construct a genuine single market is shown up by the fact that ASEAN's members still do three times as much trade with non-members as they do among themselves. Internal tariffs have been cut, but as McKinsey, a management consultancy, noted in a report in 2004, product standards and other non-tariff barriers often differ among ASEAN countries, forcing manufacturers to make small production runs for each country.

All this lowers the competitiveness of local firms, as well as multinational companies operating in the region. Corruption is another great burden on business. That is true elsewhere in Asia too, but several South-East Asian countries—notably Indonesia—are afflicted by corrupt and unreliable judicial systems, making it difficult to enforce contracts.

Dicing with relegation

Although it is hard to generalise across Asia, another obstacle to developing world-class businesses is that the five main South-East Asian economies do worse than might be expected—that is, relative to their national incomes—in promoting technology and higher education. Tony Fernandes, the boss of AirAsia, a fast-expanding Malaysian airline and a contender for the “world-class” label, laments how South Korea, where the government has pumped money into research and training, has left his country trailing in so many ways. “We used to beat them at football—not now,” he groans.

Malaysia has also spent heavily on universities and the promotion of technology but its efforts have been stymied by the country's messy racial politics (including preferential university places for the Malay majority) and by the handing of state contracts and concessions to undeserving government cronies. Both the lack of fair competition between businesses and the failure to widen access to education may have a common underlying cause: that South-East Asian countries remain in the grip of narrow elites.

The problem betrays itself not just in the region's relative lack of memorable business names but in its basic economic statistics—in particular, labour productivity, the key to long-term growth. Productivity in China and India is growing much faster than South-East Asia's is. East Asia overtook the region in output per worker by 2000 and has continued to power ahead. Now South Asia is closing the gap (see chart 3). Not even hosting the factories of so many sophisticated multinationals seems to have made much difference to South-East Asia. With all those Indian and Chinese pairs of hands joining the global workforce, the region has no option but to seek to move beyond simply offering low wage costs and produce better-educated workers and more innovation.

It is not all the fault of governments. The region's unwieldy conglomerates could do more to help themselves achieve global scale by concentrating on fewer businesses. Some are doing so, but others still seem unable to resist poking their fingers into another pie. The food-and-drink arm of Charoen Pokphand, a Thai conglomerate, is in BCG's top 100; but the group is an unspectacular contender in industries from telecoms to convenience stores and is now moving into carmaking. San Miguel of the Philippines, a big beer-to-food conglomerate, recently talked of trying its hand at generating electricity. Synergy Drive, the absurdly named merger of three underperforming plantation firms controlled by the Malaysian government, is taking a stake in the giant Bakun hydro-dam in Borneo.

This dilettantism was once summed up damningly by Michael Porter, of Harvard Business School: “These companies don't have strategies, they do deals.” Gerry Ambrose in the Kuala Lumpur office of Aberdeen Asset Management laments that it is indeed hard to find Malaysian companies with “a business plan that will last ten years”. Many firms have improved their profitability since the 1997-98 crisis but that may not guarantee their long-term survival. Because even the best-run firms often have boards and shareholder lists dominated by the founding family and their friends, it is hard to believe that their thinking will change.

Of the “godfatherish” firms profiled in Mr Studwell's book, one that analysts say is among the best performers is YTL, a Malaysian conglomerate. Big in construction, the firm also owns a British water firm, Wessex Water, operates hotels and upmarket shopping malls, runs a high-speed rail link from central Kuala Lumpur to the city's airport and owns a chain of power stations. Its founder, Yeoh Tiong Lay, built a giant construction business with state contracts in the country's early post-independence period. In the 1990s, when his friend Mahathir Mohamad was prime minister, the firm got concessions to generate electricity using subsidised gas from the state oil firm, which the state electricity firm was obliged to buy.

Nice work if you can get it. But the founder's son, Francis Yeoh, who now runs the firm, insists that it has not just rested on its laurels. It has delivered, he argues, “a 55% annual compound growth in profits” since the mid-1980s and it now earns 70% of its revenues outside Malaysia. On February 22nd it declared a profit for the six months to December 31st of 688m ringgit ($202m), 24% more than a year before. The firm does have a core competence, says Mr Yeoh, which is to build and maintain infrastructure assets of first-world quality at third-world prices. Even the group's hotels and shopping malls should be seen as “unregulated infrastructure”, he argues, stretching the point somewhat.

As Asia continues to grow vertiginously, it will need a lot more infrastructure, regulated or not, and YTL, says Mr Yeoh, has shown it can provide it. In particular, he foresees juicy contracts from applying Wessex Water's skills at cleaning up rivers to the continent's murky waterways. This indeed sounds like a promising growth business. But there will be others—not least some sizeable Chinese water-treatment firms—which will be after those same contracts. So far Wessex Water is making decent profits in western England, but its potential to become a global leader is untested.

Hitherto, Malaysian companies have had a remarkable record of picking duds when they buy foreign firms. Laura Ashley, a fashion designer; Costain, a builder; Lec, a fridgemaker; and Agusta, a motorbike-maker: all were bought by Malaysian firms with less than glorious outcomes. Even so, if they continue to improve, YTL and the region's other conglomerates may yet break the mould. Other Asian world-beaters also began as divisions of sprawling, family-run groups but eventually escaped their orbit sufficiently to thrive. An executive at India's globally expanding Tata Steel, for instance, says that Tata Sons, from which it sprang, maintains its minority stake in the firm but these days leaves it to be run by professional managers.

Another hopeful sign for South-East Asia's corporate future is that it seems to be getting easier for those outside the closed circle of the politically well-connected to set up new businesses and challenge the incumbents. Mr Fernandes's AirAsia is the prime example. Started only six years ago, the airline now criss-crosses the region with a huge network of low-cost flights. Mr Fernandes, a former music-industry man, is still frantically adding routes: he expects to be allowed to start domestic flights in the Philippines and Vietnam soon. He has started a separate, low-cost, long-haul airline, AirAsiaX, which is flying from Kuala Lumpur to Gold Coast airport in Australia and Hangzhou near Shanghai. Flights to Melbourne, Amritsar and eventually London are on the way.

Though ASEAN has been slow to lower its barriers in some areas, in aviation they are coming down. Singapore and Malaysian Airlines' duopoly on the Kuala Lumpur-Singapore route has just been scrapped and, says Mr Fernandes, incumbent firms across the region are finding that their home governments are no longer protecting them. It could be said that, by linking the region's cities with cheap and frequent flights, Mr Fernandes has done more to turn South-East Asia into an integrated economic block than any ASEAN ministerial summit. In other once-coddled industries, too, governments are starting to dismantle monopolies. YTL's Mr Yeoh says there will soon be “no hiding place” for firms trying to live from old-fashioned rent-seeking.

The rise of China and India, with their huge home markets, may mean that it is too late for South-East Asia to become big in manufacturing. But it does still have the prospect of producing world-leading firms in other areas where it has an edge. Tourism and hospitality are obvious examples, especially as the region's neighbours become richer. South-East Asia could become both “the Mediterranean and the Caribbean of Asia”, enthuses YTL's Mr Yeoh.

Playing to your strengths

Apart from YTL, well regarded companies that could use tourism growth as a springboard to global greatness include hotel groups such as Singapore's Banyan Tree, casino operators like Malaysia's Genting and even hospital firms like Thailand's Bumrungrad, a growing competitor in “medical tourism”. However, as HSBC's Mr Evans points out, such firms have yet to demonstrate that they can transfer their vaunted “service mentality” to other parts of the world that do not have an abundance of cheap labour.

Natural resources are another promising source of future world-beaters. Following Brazil and, closer to home, Australia, South-East Asia is beginning to build global businesses by making the most of what nature has provided. Palm oil, of which most of the world's supply comes from Malaysia and Indonesia, is one example. Some plantation firms are simply hitching a ride on the boom in prices but IOI, a Malaysian plantation owner, is about 50% more efficient in terms of yield per hectare than its local rivals. If the government could push Synergy Drive, its new behemoth, to the same level of productivity, it would boost the economy.

The region already dominates some types of agricultural produce: Thailand and Vietnam are the world's two largest rice exporters, for example. Since the region has so much coastline and so many rivers, there is much scope for expanding fish-farming and seafood production. Thai Union, a giant tuna-packer, is already in BCG's top 100. Vietnam, the region's rising star, has several big seafood firms which, if they can resist the regionwide scourge of diversification, may one day reach similar heights. But to make the most of its fertile land and waters, the region needs more sophisticated food-processing industries and stronger brands, instead of exporting bulk commodities.

The reasons why South-East Asia has been slower than other regions to produce world-class businesses are complex and open to debate. But they do seem to be linked to the perseverance of narrow elites and to the countries' sluggishness in overcoming old rivalries and building an integrated regional market. As a handful of promising companies are showing, not all is lost. Even in today's fierce jungle, South-East Asia can still breed tigers.

2008年2月27日 星期三

Losing patients (Health care in China)

Health care in China

Losing patients

Feb 21st 2008 | BEIJING
From The Economist print edition

An orthodox approach to fixing the unavailability of decent health care

STARTLING economic growth in China has not been matched by similar improvements in health care. The cost of treatment is becoming ever more prohibitive for the poor. Government spending is meagre. But nearly three years after declaring the system a failure, officials are at last getting ready to unveil a plan to fix it.

AFP It will cost them

Some Chinese press reports say the long-awaited and much-debated reform plan is likely to be revealed at the annual session of China's parliament, which opens on March 5th. The outline is already clear: a stronger role for government, including more money from the central budget, and a drive towards universal health insurance. Changes are already in train.

The reforms reverse the market-driven policies of much of the past two decades. The outbreak in 2003 of SARS, an often fatal respiratory disease, made the government realise what a mess the health-care system had become. Government hospitals and clinics, starved of funding, had turned to raising money (and boosting ill-paid doctors' salaries) by prescribing ever more expensive treatment and diagnostic procedures. With the collapse and privatisation of state-owned enterprises, the vast majority of citizens had been left with no insurance. Many began avoiding even desperately needed treatment.

In 2003 the government introduced a new medical-insurance scheme in the countryside. This involves contributions from rural residents as well as local governments and, for the first time, the central government. The number of people taking part rose from 80m that year to more than 730m now. This month Wu Yi, a deputy prime minister, said all rural residents (about 800m is the usual official figure) should be insured by the end of this year.

The scheme is only a slight relief, if at all, for the poor. It often does not cover routine outpatient treatment. The average reimbursement rate is only 30-40%, and bills have to be paid in full first. So hospital stays are beyond the means of many. There is also a big loophole: those insured can get benefits only in their own localities. Many younger people from the countryside are working in cities where they have to pay all of their treatment costs. A new labour-contract law introduced this year requires employers to pay medical insurance for such workers. But migrants are often hired informally, making it easy for employers to evade such requirements.

Even though urban health care receives a disproportionate share of total government spending on health, many urban residents fare just as badly. Li Ling of Peking University estimates that more than half of the urban population has no insurance. Those who do are mostly civil servants and the staff of state-owned enterprises. At least until the labour-contract law was enacted, many private enterprises provided nothing. Last year the government introduced an urban insurance scheme (similar to the rural one) aimed at non-working residents, including children and university students. The aim is to have every urban citizen covered by 2010.

Much detail, however, is still unclear. A big issue is how to wean hospitals off their dependence on revenue from user payments. Policymakers and academics have been furiously debating whether the emphasis should be on government subsidies for hospitals or on reimbursements for patients. No target has yet been set for the maximum share of health expenditure to come from patients' own pockets. Ms Li, who has been advising the government on health reform, suggests a goal of 20% compared with over 50% at present.

Unlike for education, Chinese officials have also yet to set any specific targets for government spending as a percentage of GDP. The government spends a mere 0.8% of GDP on health (it was more than 1% in the 1980s). Henk Bekedam of the World Health Organisation says it could easily afford around 2.5%. But the government is being cautious. Reform, said Ms Wu last month, would be complicated. “Patience is needed,” she said. Patients would say they have shown more than enough already.

2008年2月19日 星期二


时事风云 | 2008.02.19



今年3月台湾举行总统选举,8月中国举办奥运会,11月美国总统大选。在这样的多事之秋,台湾岛内的风吹草动更是引人注目。入联公投的结果北京将如何解 读,如果北京果真牺牲奥运会,武力促成统一,美国的“对台关系法”是否赋予华盛顿军事干预的义务。德国之声记者张丹红就中美台三角关系采访了德国对外关系 学会中国问题专家桑德施奈德。


桑德施奈德:小小的台湾岛最终抵御不住来自中华 人民共和国的压力,这是可以预见的。从美国的角度来看,这是一个在冷战大背景之下的纯策略性的决定。当然美国当时还有一个考虑,那就是在与苏联的较量中打 所谓的中国牌。不过当时改变对中国政策的最主要原因是,美国认识到必须与中国发展正常的关系。


这是一个非常艰难的外交举动。我们必须考虑到冷 战的大背景,抛弃一个关系密切的战略性伙伴,转向一个共产党国家,这在美国国内引发了很多争论,也需要做周密的准备。中美之间就“一个中国”的政策也进行 了很艰辛的谈判。这7年的时间说明两大完全不同的体系虽然开始合作,但彼此仍充满猜疑。


这一法律仍然有效。其中一个条款的内容给了美国 保护台湾的可能,但不是必须。也就是说,如果中国武力进攻台湾,美国不是会自动出兵。但我们也不能忘记,在过去几个月、甚至几年两岸关系的风风雨雨之后, 美国国会中为台湾游说的势力仍然非常强大。美国的安全政治家也认为,一旦台海发生战争,美国将出面干预。也就是说将导致美国和中国之间的军事冲突。


桑德施奈德教授近影Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 桑德施奈德教授近影出 台“反分裂国家法”的时间正与欧盟讨论是否解除对中国武器禁运的讨论重合。从北京的角度来说,这是个不幸的巧合。从内容上来说,正如您所说的,北京其实不 需要这样的一部法律来阻止台湾宣布独立。中国的总体外交政策已经非常明确。这一法律多多少少是个象征性的举动,是向台湾现任总统陈水扁的台独努力发出的警 告。对北京来说,“反分裂国家法”达到的效果远离中国政府的初衷,它将国际社会的注意力引向了台湾的安全,而不是中国的国家利益。


我担心是这样的。从北京的角度来看也是如此。因 为公投结果不可能改变台湾的地位。单是中国在安理会拥有的否决权就使公投结果不可能有任何付诸政治实践的可能。而且国际社会不愿在这一问题上惹恼中国。世 界上的绝大多数国家都坚持“一个中国”的原则。这又是一个玩弄象征的游戏。这样的游戏很容易出轨。北京至少在一月份台湾立法院选举之前非常担心台湾会利用 奥运会的机会,采取一些会引发严重危机的举动。目前局势有所缓和,因为国民党在立法院选举中大胜。但基本的问题仍然没有改变。




非常可悲的是,外界没办法给台湾出主意。如果无 所作为,那么鉴于中国大陆的经济、政治崛起,台湾的战略地位每年、甚至每个月都在恶化。如果试图改变现状,那么台湾又太容易在军事上和经济上陷入压力。从 台湾的角度看,实在是没有好的选项。台湾的外交官也说,我们能怎么办呢?我们的任务就是让我们的国家、我们的政府得到更多的国际承认。所以,尽管台湾的外 交努力很多时候注定要失败,他们也不会停止这种努力。


台湾现在就是一个失败者。我们西方在对台湾的态 度是双重标准。我们不能忘记,台湾过去40年里达到的正是我们西方所一向倡导的。在中国政府的压力之下,国际社会对台湾的成绩不予承认。这对那些大肆宣扬 西方价值、并在世界其他地区要求这些价值得到实现的政治家来说,不仅是一个颜面问题,而且一个可信度的问题。


2008年2月14日 星期四



  日本國內各大汽車配件廠商紛紛在印度強化開發和生產體制。著名車用燈具廠商斯坦利電氣(Stanley Electric)計劃提高在當地合資公司中的出資比例,並在南部和東部建設兩個新工廠。著名變速箱廠商JATCO將設立開發中心。鈴木等各大汽車公司也 計劃將面向印度開發的低價位戰略小型車出口到其他新興市場國家,同時各大配件廠商也計劃在印度建立開發、生產一條龍體制。印度正逐漸發展成為汽車產業的一 大聚集地。  



  日產汽車旗下的JATCO將在年內設立開發中心。這是該公司在印度的第一家開發中心,預計將建在日產汽車設計中心所在的南部欽奈市近郊。在當地將聘用100名左右的技術人員。將從日本接手部分基於電腦的模擬試驗及繪圖業務。(2月13日 《日本經濟新聞》晨報)

2008年2月8日 星期五


二月八日 初二 下午午餐之後
過台中美術館 看些 越南多能摩托車的照片展
有高原 養yaks區之郵差的故事
紀錄片之一 百里郵蹤


  推廣教育  「食飽未?-2007亞洲藝術雙年展」中小學來館教學活動

2008年2月5日 星期二


Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 如果马英九当选会引发新的冲突?


童振源:中国方面一再误解台湾民主的发展,忽略台湾人民希望加入国际社会的这一期盼,我们感到非常遗憾。从1971年台湾被排除出联合国体系之外,到现在已经30几年了,台湾非常希望能重新加入联合国,成为国际社会的一分子。民进党和国民党都推出了所谓的“入联公投”和“返联公投”,希望能充分表达台湾人民加入国际社会这一意愿。这是集体的意志,我想这也是最和平最民主的一种方式。所以我希望中国政府能尊重我们的民主,能够尊重我们的人民要参与到国际社会中的意愿。Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 入联公投前景如何?




Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 台湾人民热情很高




第三个方面则是由于一些其他的议题影响程度比较大一些。这里面包括过去执政所留下的负面的信息,让老百姓可能有一些不同的认知,这个部分执政党必须比较深刻的去检讨。另外一个原因在于我们这是第一次选区改变。整个地方选举的范围缩小,而国民党的地方势力比较强大造成的结果。但是将之单一认为是两岸政策的失败或者两岸政策不得民心,我想从过去到现在看不出一个比较明显的证据。Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 国民党地方势力强大





中国政府希望利用这次谈判来影响台湾的大选,不给民进党政府任何的政绩。这种情况在总统大选之后理论上应该是消失了,两岸谈判恢复之后很快就能达成相关协议。Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 民进党能否力挽狂澜?




童振源:我想如果马英九先生当选的话,恐怕两岸关系的发展会有些停滞。如果谢长廷先生当选的话,那么中国政府将会面对一个真正的台湾本土的政权,真正的提出一个谈判的底线,此前两岸为了选举而中断的会谈就有望恢复。如果马英九先生当选的话,问题会比较大。马英九先生主张“终极统一”,中国政府会要求国民党政府接受统一的谈判;马英九先生过去也认为,两岸应该在“九二共识”的基础上恢复谈判。“九二共识”其实是指“一个中国,各自表述”。中国方面此前完全没有提到所谓的“一个中国,各自表述”,甚至批评说“各自表述”是谋求台湾独立的一种借口。所以中国政府也强调,过去没有接受,未来也不会接受“一个中国,各自表述”。Bildunterschrift: Großansicht des Bildes mit der Bildunterschrift: 马英九强势出击




2008年2月4日 星期一

Great Firewall of China 中国互联网检查



“中国官方称视频网站国有化的目的,是 为了‘为社会主义服务’以及更好的‘遵从社会主义的道德标准’。中国政府实际上是想借此保证,只有通过官方审核的视频作品才能在网上播放。中共中宣部几乎 天天为私有的以及国家网站的网页内容做出明文规定,而只在极少情况下给出规定理由。不按照规定行事的网站要面临被处以高额罚款,甚至停业整顿的风险。类似 ‘中国将成立一个能源部’或是‘对证券市场,银行及保险业的监督机构将合并’这样涉及政府计划的内容要立即从网页上删除,因为这些都是‘莫须有的谣言’。

中国人大颁布的互联网新闻报道规定,其中几点现 在得到公开:第一,各网站只许刊登新华社报道的消息,只许转载‘人民日报’发表的评论文章。其他新闻渠道一概不得使用;第二,各网站必须对网页上所有新 闻,报道,文章,论坛,个人博客的内容进行监控。评论性文章,观点性作品必须经过审核批准后才得以发表。各网站不要主动在各类论坛中提出新话题,鼓励网友 展开讨论。对个人博客的管制力度要加大。特别是对驳斥人大下达的指令精神以及批评中国政治体系的文章,要马上删除,并封锁该博客。第三, 各网站要加强网 页上积极观点的主导性,要主动在网页上引导公众树立积极向上的观点。对于积极的声音要给予强调和肯定,在网络上创造一个支持人大决议的环境。



Great Firewall of China Faces Online Rebels

Published: February 4, 2008

WUHAN, China — As an 18-year-old student with an interest in the Internet, Zhu Nan had been itching to say something about the country’s pervasive online censorship system, widely known here as the Great Firewall.

When China’s censors began blocking access to the popular photo-sharing site Flickr, Mr. Zhu felt the moment had come. Writing on his blog last year, the student, who is now a freshman at a university in this city, questioned the rationale for Internet restrictions, and in subsequent posts, began passing along tips on how to evade them.

“Officials in our country claimed that Internet censorship is done according to the law,” Mr. Zhu wrote. “If so, why not let people know about this legal project, and why, instead, ban the Web sites that publicize and examine those legal policies? If you’re determined to do this, you shouldn’t be afraid of criticism.”

Mr. Zhu’s obscure blog post and his subsequent activism is a small part of what many here regard as a watershed moment. In recent months, China’s censors have tightened controls over the Internet, often blacking out sites that had no discernible political content. In the process, they have fostered a backlash, as many people who previously had little interest in politics have become active in resisting the controls.

And all of it comes at a time of increasing risk for those who choose to protest. Human rights advocates say the government has been broadening its crackdown on any signs of dissent as the Olympic Games in Beijing draw near.

For a vast majority of Internet users, censorship still does not appear to be much of a factor. The most popular Web applications here are games and messaging services, and the most visited Internet sites focus on everyday subjects like entertainment news and sports. Many, in fact, seem only vaguely aware that China’s Internet universe is carefully pruned, and even among those who know, a majority hardly seems to care.

But growing numbers of others are becoming increasingly resentful of restrictions on a wide range of Web sites, including Flickr, YouTube, Wikipedia, MySpace (sometimes), Blogspot and many other sites that the public sees as sources of harmless diversion or information. The mounting resentment has inspired a wave of increasingly determined social resistance of a kind that is uncommon in China.

This resistance is taking many forms, from lawsuits by Internet users against government-owned service providers, claiming that the blocking of sites is illegal, to a growing network of software writers who develop code aimed at overcoming the restrictions. An Internet-based word-of-mouth campaign has taken shape, in which bloggers and Web page owners post articles to spread awareness of the Great Firewall, or share links to programs that will help evade it.

In almost every instance, the resistance has been fired by the surprise and indignation when people bumped up against a system that they had only vaguely suspected existed. “I had had an impression that some kind of mechanism controls the Internet in China, but I had no idea about the Great Firewall,” said Pan Liang, a writer of children’s literature and a Web site operator who first learned the extent of the controls after a friend’s blog was blocked. “I was really annoyed at first,” Mr. Pan said. “Then the 17th Party Congress came, and I received an order that my Web site, which is about children’s literature, had to close its message board. It made me even angrier.”

Like others, Mr. Pan used his Web page to post solutions for overcoming the restrictions to some banned sites, and then he used a historical allusion to mock his country’s censorship system.

“Many people don’t know that 300 years after Emperor Kangxi ordered an end to construction of the Great Wall, our great republic has built an invisible great wall,” he wrote. “Can blocking really work? Kangxi knew the Great Wall was a huge lie: just think how many soldiers are needed to guard those thousands of miles.”

A 17-year-old blogger from Guangdong Province who posted instructions on how to get to YouTube, overcoming the firewall’s restrictions, was no less philosophical. “I don’t know if it’s better to speak out or keep silent, but if everyone keeps silent, the truth will be buried,” wrote the girl, who uses the online name Ruyue. “I don’t want to be silent, even if everyone else shuts up.”

The Chinese government seems particularly wary of video-sharing sites like YouTube, and has recently tightened regulations on domestic Internet providers in ways that are aimed at controlling such services.

Others, meanwhile, have gone beyond launching Internet-based responses like these and taken more direct action. One such person is Du Dongjing, 38, an information technology engineer in Shanghai who sued a branch of China Telecom for contract violation because of the service provider’s unacknowledged restrictions on Web content.

In this case what initially angered Mr. Du was the surprise blocking of his own business Web site last February. The site markets personal finance software, and had no editorial content of any kind. When the service provider failed to explain why the link went dead, Mr. Du took the phone company to court.

His lawsuit was rejected by a Shanghai court in October, but the case has been heard in appeal. “The Americans have an expression, ‘You can’t fight City Hall,’ ” Mr. Du said. “However, I believe that with the help of today’s Internet, the mood of the public, I can win this case. I can even make a contribution to improving Chinese democracy.”

Even as anticensorship activism spreads, views are divided about whether a grass-roots campaign can prevail. Some see strong continued popular resistance to the limits imposed by tens of thousands of well-financed government technicians operating powerful computers and predict a breakthrough.

Yuan Mingli, who created an anti-Great Firewall evasion group because of his love for Wikipedia, said the government was already at work on new generations of Internet technology aimed at insulating Chinese users even more from the rest of world. But he predicted its failure. “That’s impossible, fundamentally, because people’s hearts have changed,” he said, adding that the system would “eventually break down precisely because China cannot be completely disconnected to the outside world anymore.”

For some of the anticensorship activists, creating a broader awareness of censorship is itself a victory. “If you don’t know what’s on top of you, than you won’t fight back against it,” said Li Xieheng, a blogger who wrote a program he named Gladder, meaning Great Ladder, to help users of the Firefox browser overcome Great Firewall restrictions. “It’s just like many people not feeling that China isn’t free. They’re not aware of it and feel things are natural here, but that’s just the power of media control.”

Mr. Li said he expected the Great Firewall to continue adapting to the tactics of its opponents. The movement, though, has proved the power of public opinion as an important limitation of the censor’s power, he said. “Why don’t they just take Google down?” he asked. “It’s because they don’t want to have a scene and have everybody know. A lot of people came to know about the system because of Flickr, and that is something the system needs to weigh.”

Fan Wenxin contributed reporting from Shanghai.

2008年2月3日 星期日

台湾民主化へ干渉嫌う 日本毒餃

毒餃包裝有小洞 驗出達馬松








台湾民主化へ干渉嫌う 中台幻の船上首脳会談

2008年2月3日 20時08分



 【台北3日共同】1990年代半ばに計画された台湾海峡の船上での中台首脳会談について、当時、台湾総統だった李登輝氏(85)は3日までの共同 通信の取材に対し「会えば、民主化を進める際に江沢民(当時の中国国家主席)の話を聞かざるを得なくなっていた」と述べ、李氏の歴史的な功績となった台湾 民主化への中国の干渉などを嫌って江氏との会談を拒否したことを明らかにした。