Chinese officials have pledged to alleviate food shortages in Xi’an for residents locked in their homes as the country battles its worst Covid-19 outbreak since the pandemic started in Wuhan two years ago.

Residents of the central Chinese city of 13m have complained on social media that their food stores were running low and of difficulty buying more supplies as shops have been shuttered and movement sharply curtailed.

In many parts of the city, residents are only allowed to leave their homes for mandatory Covid-19 testing and have to rely on patchy delivery services to restock.

“The stores here aren’t

Read More

Not long into the new year, I will turn 40. On my way to what actuaries tell us is the rough midpoint of a western male’s likely span in this vale of tears, I have had occasion to notice a few things. I have also acquired a platform on which to share them. Here, then, in scattered form, are one man’s life lessons: some practical, some grander in scope, many no doubt wrong, but all sincere.

Go for checked luggage over carry-on. The goal is to make a multi-hour flight stress-free, not to avoid a brief wait at the other

Read More

Shares in China’s tech companies surged on the year’s final day of trading following big gains on Wall Street for US-listed Chinese businesses, though the rally was not enough to shake off the gloom after a woeful 2021 for the sector marked by a regulatory crackdown.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index rose 1.2 per cent on Friday, while the exchange’s tech index climbed almost 4 per cent. China’s CSI 300 of Shanghai- and Shenzhen-listed stocks was up 0.4 per cent.

The rally followed a boost for the Nasdaq Golden Dragon index of large- and mid-cap Chinese companies, which jumped 9.4

Read More

Shares in SenseTime jumped more than 20 per cent on its first day of trading almost three weeks after it postponed its initial public offering when the US blacklisted China’s biggest artificial intelligence company.

SenseTime raised $740m in Hong Kong on Thursday after its original listing plans were derailed when Washington barred Americans from investing in the company.

Joe Biden’s administration has accused SenseTime, which specialises in facial recognition software, of enabling human rights abuses against Muslim Uyghurs in China’s north-western Xinjiang region. The company has denied the charges.

The listing was swiftly revived after Chinese state-backed entities stepped

Read More

Stand News, Hong Kong’s leading pro-democracy news outlet, said it would close after national security police officers raided its headquarters, marking the latest step in a government crackdown on independent media and opposition activists.

More than 200 officers descended on Wednesday morning on Stand News, a news site known for its critical coverage of government policies. Police arrested six people, including current and former senior executives, for alleged “conspiracy to publish seditious publication” under British colonial-era laws.

Police said they used a search warrant to seize journalistic materials and that the government had frozen about HK$61m (US$8m) of Stand News’s

Read More

Tokyo and Beijing have agreed to set up a military hotline, according to Japanese officials, creating an emergency communication mechanism to defuse potential crises over disputed islands and the Taiwan Strait.

The Japanese defence ministry said the governments agreed to set up the link by the end of 2022 during a two-hour phone call on Monday between Nobuo Kishi, defence minister, and his Chinese counterpart Wei Fenghe.

The ministers agreed on the “timely establishment” of a hotline between the two militaries, the Japanese defence ministry said, in order to improve the effectiveness of the maritime and aerial communication mechanism, a

Read More