Friday, July 15, 2016

Vancouver Resident Chinese Spy Su Bin Sentenced

The Chinese government has repeatedly denied any involvement in hacking, but Mr. Su’s cyber-espionage efforts have been lauded by state-controlled media in China.
“On the secret battlefield without gunpowder, China needs special agents to gather secrets from the U.S. As for Su, be he recruited by the Chinese government or driven by economic benefits, we should give him credit for what he is doing for the country,” said a March editorial in the Global Times, a publication with significant ties to the ruling Communist Party.
The editorial was headlined: “Su Bin deserves respect whether guilty or innocent.”

Friday, July 08, 2016

Canada Should Be Careful with Li Keqiang Visit in September

An editorial published in the Wall Street Journal July 5 ( is predicting the possible "removal of Premier Li Keqiang, the one Hu ally on the seven-member Politburo Standing Committee, the pinnacle of Chinese politics."  Mr. Li is scheduled to visit Canada in September.

This Li visit could therefore become a replay of the fiasco of Prime Minister Harper's going to Chongqing to "build relations" with Bo Xilai as Bo's purge was already in process.  The Canadian Prime Minister was the last foreign leader to be seen with Bo just prior to his arrest in 2012.

But a similar miscalculation on our part substituting a Premier of the State Council and more importantly a Standing Committee of the Politburo member as Mr. Li is could be a lot more damaging to Canada-China relations.

Chinese factional politics is a dangerous game.  Canada should take care not to become inadvertently drawn into it to our peril.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

China Refusing to Recognize Canadian Citizenship of Travellers

China expert Charles Burton, a professor at Brock University, said the move appears to be part of Beijing's attempt to tighten control globally to mute dissent against the ruling regime.

Burton pointed to a recent case of a Hong Kong bookseller with a Swedish passport who was arrested in Thailand and sent to China for "interrogation" as an example of Beijing's actions.

He said the reported policy would be in line with China's policy of considering anyone with Chinese heritage as subject to Beijing's authority.

"I think it does have a chilling effect on people of Chinese origin who felt that acquisition of foreign citizenship gave them a degree of protection," Burton said. "It goes against international law; it's part and parcel of China's refusal to acknowledge the authority of international regimes in general."

He said the policy could be considered discrimination because Beijing is issuing visas based solely on people's ethnicity.

Burton said Canada must raise the issue with China at the highest levels.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Conservative Commission and Chris Patten Urge Britain to Re-Think China Policy

"Fiona Bruce, chair of the commission, said: “Without exception, every submission to our inquiry detailed a severe deterioration in human rights in China since 2013 and revealed a situation which is the worst China has seen for many years, possibly since the Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989. Witnesses told us that many recent developments were ‘unprecedented.'”"

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Brexit will Negatively Impact China-EU Free Trade Negotiations

"Brexit could also mark a setback for China’s long-term goal of a free trade agreement with the EU. London had emerged as one of the most eager advocates for a China-EU FTA; with the U.K. now exiting the bloc, none of the other major EU states seem keen to ink a deal with Beijing. An FTA with the U.K. alone might be politically simpler to negotiate (assuming Cameron’s embrace of Beijing is also adopted by his replacement as prime minister), but won’t have nearly the same economic benefits for China."

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Getting Serious About China FTA

"In 1985, when Canada entered into free-trade negotiations with the United States – a country that it knows intimately – it set up a separate “Trade Negotiations Office” that brought together the best and the brightest from across government. It selected Simon Reisman, an experienced deal maker and former top civil servant, to lead the talks. Mr. Reisman reported directly to the Prime Minister. His team was given almost unlimited access to resources.

In the end, pooling smart people and substantial resources made a significant difference. Superb preparatory work and creative negotiating tactics allowed Canada, against all odds, to win concessions in key areas, including disciplines on U.S. trade remedy measures."