US panel backs takeover ban for Chinese state-owned firms

With Washington heading in more hawkish direction, China must respond by opening up state companies to private investment, analysts say

A top US congressional panel has called on Washington to ban Chinese state-owned firms from taking over US companies, citing national security concerns.

The recommendation in a report on Wednesday from the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission comes amid intense speculation about US president-elect Donald Trump’s likely policy on China and fears of a trade rift between the two ­countries. Continue reading

Chinese military could soon disable sensors on enemy missiles using suitcase-sized device after ‘groundbreaking’ study on ultrafast lasers

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The Chinese destroyer Wuhan leads a fleet of naval ships ahead of a joint exercise with Russia in the Sea of Japan. At present, high-frequency lasers used to tackle missiles are the size of huge containers. Photo: AP

 

A breakthrough in laser technology may give the Chinese military the ability to blind the sensors on enemy missiles or even satellites using a portable device the size of a suitcase, rather than the large container-sized version typically found on warships.

A research team led by Professor Li Zhiyuan with the Chinese Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Physics reported that they had reduced the sophisticated mechanism that generates a high-frequency laser down to a single piece of crystal.

This means the huge ultrafast laser generator that is used to render heat-seeking missiles useless, and which can be found on warships today, could be shrunk to the size of hand baggage and mounted on aircraft, tanks or even soldiers. Continue reading

China Reacts to Obama’s State of the Union: America is in Decline

In his State of the Union address on Wednesday, President Obama mentioned China a total of three times.

One was to praise China’s commitment to cut carbon emissions. The second was to encourage American manufacturing executives to bring back jobs from China. The third was a call-to-arms to prevent China from writing the trade rules in the Asia Pacific.

China watchers inhaled sharply at this third point, given the sensitivity in China about who should be calling the shots in Asia. However, the media coverage in China of Obama’s remarks has been surprisingly restrained, suggesting that the leadership does not want to encourage anti-American nationalist fervour at the moment. Continue reading

China Is Mass-Producing Islands To Extend Its Strategic Borders

A dramatic change is taking place in the South China Sea where, since the beginning of this year, Beijing has created at least five new islands by dredging rock and sand and pumping it into reefs to form new land. By doing so, the Chinese are sending a blunt message to its neighbors and the U.S.: Keep out.

As a BBC News special report notes, China’s island building is aimed at addressing what it views as a serious strategic deficit:

In 2012 the Communist Party reclassified the South China Sea as a “core national interest”, placing it alongside such sensitive issues as Taiwan and Tibet. It means China is prepared to fight to defend it.

This is confirmed by Prof Yan Xuetong of Beijing’s Tsinghua University— a pro-government academic well known for presenting the Communist Party’s view to the outside world.

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Chinese scientists upbeat on development of invisibility cloak

Undoubtably this will have military application and future useage in the PLA. Reports of this technology first came from the US roughly 7 years ago, and Britain 6 years ago or so. The British were working on cloaking capability for their tanks.

One team has already made a cat ‘disappear’ with a device that has huge military potential

Mainland scientists are increasingly confident of developing the world’s first invisibility cloak, using technology to hide objects from view and make them “disappear”.

The central government has funded at least 40 research teams over the past three years to develop the idea, which until now has largely been the stuff of science fiction and fantasy novels like the Harry Potter series. Continue reading