Seven questions interview

In my Beijing office

On 13 September 2020 I had a “Seven questions interview” in my office by a crew of Shenzhou Magazine.

 

The 7 questions submitted: 200913 interview_questions

I had to show and explain my “picture wall” in the office and show some of my photo picture albums. Some of the pics in the video show scenes shot in December 1980 in Changchun, and pictures of my office in the Beijing Hotel in the early eighties.
The video of the interview came out a bit later, very professional but of course with the usual clever editing removing any comments that could sound “negative”. Still well done. See further.

Entities involved:

中国产学研合作促进会
China Industry-University-Research Institute Collaboration Association
website: http://www.ciur.org.cn/
Weixin ID: ciur-china

《神州》杂志是由中国文学艺术界联合会主管、中国通俗文学研究会主办的国内外公开发行的中央大型文化新闻类旬刊。
“Shenzhou” magazine is a large-scale central cultural news magazine issued at home and abroad, hosted by the China Federation of Literary and Art Circles and sponsored by the China Popular Literature Research Association.
Weixin ID: szmag09

Interview posted

The video is on the “新创视点”public account (“New Point of View”), link:
https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/9zbqv7TC3jd4EHwEoD9gXw

See here the Chinese text and an approximate translation: 200913 interview_posted

You can watch the complete video here: https://youtu.be/H4Ghb2w3JK4
(need VPN in China)

CIFTIS and expat confidence

Loss of confidence

In an earlier post I mentioned CIFTIS and expat confidence. We have a problem.

There is a need to restore confidence in the foreign business community so there can be an efficient cooperation in the service sector. In my little group of the “Old China Hands” I get feedback from expats about discrimination, even xenophobia, against foreigners who are wrongly considered to be the “dangerous virus carriers” importing COVID-19. This is totally baseless as the vast majority of foreigners cannot return to China since March. The very few who can re-enter are subject to stringent health checks. All dangerous “imported” virus cases are from returning Chinese nationals. The government has failed to clarify this, leading to many misunderstandings. As such the “opening up” and other talk is just hot air.
In our expat community I see with sadness many abandoning China, disappointed.

How we feel in China

Also Green Card holders complain about the discrimination, being refused access to hotels, most major hospitals and even restaurants, among others. Because we are “dangerous” people. Imagine Western countries would act the same way against Chinese people. That would unleash a storm of protest.

Another issue, in Beijing, is the lack of service staff, increasing salary costs and affecting quality of service. It is an issue that does not receive any attention from authorities and neither from foreign chambers of commerce. All while many Chinese are desperately looking for a job.

See:
How coronavirus has made travel in China a whole lot harder for foreigners: Travel restrictions in China have gradually eased as the country has brought the coronavirus pandemic under control. But that has not made finding a hotel any easier for foreign residents, one South China Morning Post reporter found.
https://www.scmp.com/economy/article/3101181/how-coronavirus-has-made-travel-china-whole-lot-harder-foreigners

Nobody offers help

Embassies and foreign chambers of commerce offer no help to rectify the discrimination. We are simply ignored. Many foreigners struggle to come back but attention is paid to mostly the big companies only. Furthermore most chambers have more and more Chinese members who don’t care about foreigners and do not dare to criticize their government.

In Beijing we can actually complain about discrimination through the hotline 12345. They have English service. Most foreigners do not dare to complain however. Chinese colleagues do not help at all.

Many expats giving up on China face the trauma to recover their belongings. The Japanese again are the most creative:
10 September 2020 – Expats retrieve possessions in China through ‘remote transfer’
By ATSUSHI OKUDERA –  Correspondent Asahi Shimbun
http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/13669804

A service that allows strangers to rifle through one’s belongings is proving popular among Japanese expatriates trying to retrieve their possessions from China during the pandemic.

More INDUS interviews

Skype video or audio

Recently I had more INDUS interviews. Indus news is first international news channel of Pakistan.
Depending on their technical situation we use Skype video or audio with the mobile.

Program on 15 April 2020

“As the coronavirus disrupts businesses all over the world, it also offers an opportunity for online businesses and e-commerce. We take a look at how the world of online shopping is being impacted by the  pandemic. We also discuss the necessary pre-cautions that sellers and consumers need to take in order to observe SOPs (Standard Operating Procedure)  and avoid any form of transmission.”
Its a recorded program by Meshal Malik.
Link of the program: https://youtu.be/2JxpmiMg9GA

Climate change & income inequality

Meshal Malik was again the host on Indus News on 4 August 2020. My focus was Climate change & income inequality, themes in my book Toxic Capitalism (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0792X896M/)

See the link: https://youtu.be/jdYt43JuMnU
Indus Special | Parents’ role in education | Climate change & income inequality | Ep 411| Indus News

CIFTIS online meeting

Using Womeeting

I was invited by Dongcheng District as one of the few foreigners in Beijing to be part of the CIFTIS online meeting on 4 September 2020, 8 pm. The 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) was co-hosted by the Ministry of Commerce and the Beijing Municipal Government and was held in Beijing from 4 to 9 September.

200901 invitation1

The online meeting was to join the “Global Trade in Services Summit”.
My official name posted was 北京大策略商业顾问有限公司范克高夫.
We were ordered to test the day before. The online meeting also offered English translation (and other languages). We were a total of over 300 online participants.

 

(You can see me in the upper left corner)

Official speeches

The keynote speech was of President Xi Jinping, I noted in particular his insistence on an “open and inclusive environment”.
That was later repeated by Premier Li Keqiang who pledged to develop a better and more open business environment to bolster confidence among foreign investors.
The Summit was featured in many media such as China Daily and South China Morning Post.
See:

4 September 2020 – China pitches services trade fair as proof of ‘unwavering confidence in opening up’ to foreign firms
https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3100142/china-pitches-services-trade-fair-proof-unwavering-confidence
If you can’t use the link: 200904 tradefair

and

4 September 2020 – CIFTIS to drive global economic recovery
CHINA DAILY
http://global.chinadaily.com.cn/a/202009/04/WS5f51786ea310675eafc576a9.html
If you can’t use the link: 200904 CD_CIFTIS

The challenges for the so-called “opening up”

We could not provide feedback or comments during the CIFTIS online meeting, nobody could neither in the Summit.
I wish I could have given my 50 cents of comments to the President.
More about it in a new post. Stay tuned!

INDUS News special on COVID-19

Gilbert on INDUS News, again. A Skype interview for the INDUS News special on COVID-19.

For a “change” talking about the virus. Indus News is the first international news channel of Pakistan.

Watch here: https://youtu.be/9XG9-8CYcsU