::: TSR Weekly Report
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2017-05-16 | NO.21(19) epaper |
Note to Readers
TSR is pleased to announce newly published books about Taiwan and East Asia on its website and in its weekly newsletter. If you're a scholar or your book is coming out from an academic press, please send the title of your book and a link to the publisher's web site to TSR's Senior Editor, James Lee (JL18@princeton.edu).
Cross-Strait Relations
Dealing With Chinese Sanctions: South Korea and Taiwan (2017-05-12)
(The Diplomat, By Kristian McGuire) A look at Taiwan’s similar experience as a victim of China’s coercive tactics indicates that the sanctions might be lifted soon after the new South Korean president settles into office, but could also linger in one form or another for years, depending on the new South Korean administration’s strategic orientation.

General in Spy Case Removed From Post: MND
 (2017-05-12)
(China Post, By Joseph Yeh) An Army general who is now under investigation has been removed from his post following being accused of spying for China. The Ministry of National Defense said that they had found some "irregularities" in Hsieh Chia-kang's behavior over the last few months. He was also suspected of making several trips to China in 2009 and 2010 to meet with Chinese citizens.

Former Bodyguard of Ex-Vice President Indicted for Spying for China (2017-05-12)
(China Post/CNA) Wang Hong-ju, a retired police officer who served as a bodyguard for Vice President Annette Lu, was indicted on charges of espionage for China. Through a business career in China, Wang had been found to be providing confidential information to Chinese officials. He was caught after people denied to provide him information.

Group Seeks US Support to Release Lee Ming-che (2017-05-15)
(Taipei Times, By Lin Liang-sheng and William Hetherington) A group advocating for human rights activist Lee Ming-che's release after his arbitrary detention in China flew to Washington, DC to ask for help from the United States government and various NGOs. China has yet to provide any concrete information on the whereabouts and condition of Lee. The group hopes international assistance will lead to China giving more information on the case.
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Two US Lawmakers Urge WHA Support for Taiwan (2017-05-10)
(Taipei Times/CNA) US Representatives Ed Royce and Eliot Engel called for US Health Secretary Tom Price to continue support of Taiwan as Taiwan did not receive an invitation to the WHA conference in Geneva. They wished for Price to meet with the Taiwanese delegation that will be going to Geneva despite the lack of an invitation, as well as asked Taiwan to visit Taiwan later this year to promote better bilateral relations.

No WHA Invite, But Taiwan's Going Anyway (2017-05-10)
(China Post, By the news staff) The Health Ministry confirmed that Taiwan did not receive an invite to the WHA conference in Geneva this year. However, Taiwan still plans to send a delegation to the conference in order to conduct bilateral meeting with its partners. The Health Ministry denounced the political charges behind not offering Taiwan an invitation and said healthcare and policy should transverse boundaries.

Tsai Congratulates Moon, Hopes for Stronger Cooperation (2017-05-10)
(China Post/CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen offered her congratulations to Moon Jae-in, the new President of South Korea. She expressed her desire for stronger communication and better cooperation between the two countries, which already share a strong relationship based on the shared values of democracy.

Japan, US Support Taiwan's WHA Bid (2017-05-10)
(China Post, By Joseph Yeh) In light of Taiwan's lack of an invitation to the WHA, both Japan and the United States have expressed their support for Taiwan and its place at the conference. Japan continued to defend its stance that the issue of Taiwan should be solved with direct and peaceful communication with China and not violence. The United States also stated through the American Institute in Taiwan that it will always be Washington's stance that Taiwan should participate as an observer.

US Strongly Backs Taiwan's WHA Bid (2017-05-11)
(Taipei Times/CNA) The US Department of State on Tuesday voiced its strong support for Taiwan’s participation in the annual World Health Assembly meeting as an observer, after the nation failed to receive an invitation to attend this year. The exclusion of Taiwan from this year’s meeting is widely seen as the latest move by China to clamp down on Taiwan’s international participation, a strategy that has become more aggressive since Tsai took power in May last year. 


Ministry to Communicate with US Over Espionage (2017-05-12)
(Taipei Times, By Chen Wei-han) Following up on the espionage issues Taiwan faced over the past decade, the Ministry of National Defense stated that it would improve its counterintelligence efforts through starting communication with the United States. This stems from the investigation of Hsieh Chia-kang, who had been accused of leaking classified information to China. The Ministry of National Defense is concerned with the possible compromise of several missile systems.

Taiwan Touts Benefits To US Of Its Weapons Purchases (2017-05-12)
(South China Morning Post/Reuters) Taiwan will continue to buy arms from the United States with its purchases boosting employment in at least six US states and narrowing the bilateral trade gap, the government has told the United States, in rare public comment sure to anger China.

US Likely to Increase Pressure Over Beef Ban: Government (2017-05-13)
(China Post, By the news staff) Following China's decision to allow American beef and pork to be sold within its borders, the Taiwanese government is expecting to face more pressure from the United States to allow beef and pork sales within Taiwan. Wang Mei-hua, Taiwan's Vice Economics Minister, stated that the Chinese only lifted parts of the ban, but it was seen as a sign of progress between China and the US during their trade discussions.

Taiwan-Indonesian Immigration Meeting Ends with Fruitful Results (2017-05-14)
(China Post, By the news staff) During a five-day visit to Jakarta to discuss bilateral relations between Taiwan and Indonesia, the two countries worked out several of their issues regarding immigration. These new agreements include information sharing, visa-free stays for nationals of the two countries, and increased border security. Both countries agreed that these new policies could increase efforts in the fight against human trafficking.

Philippine Lawmakers Issue Statement Supporting Taiwan's WHA Attendance (2017-05-15)
(Taipei Times/CNA) Several Filipino lawmakers have released a statement supporting Taiwan's bid to attend the World Health Assembly conference. Taiwan did not receive an invitation to the conference this year. The Philippines demanded Taiwan's participation in line with the precedent it has set for participating for the last eight years.

WHO Bars Taiwanese Media from Covering Annual Meeting (2017-05-15)
(China Post, By the news staff) Taiwanese media was not allowed to cover the happenings of the World Health Assembly conference. The conference has already stirred controversy for not inviting Taiwan this year, allegedly under pressure from Beijing. The action of barring the Taiwanese press drew criticism from the Taiwanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Taiwan Wants to Join WHA: Foreign Ministry Asks Friends for Help (2017-05-15)
(China Post) The Foreign Ministry has sent out requests to all Taiwanese allies asking them to support Taiwan by submitting a proposal to invite Taiwan to participate in the World Health Assembly conference. This follows Taiwan's lack of an invitation this year, despite its eight years of attending as an observer. The Foreign Ministry did not list any specific allies asked.

Panama's Taiwanese Vow Support for WHA Bid (2017-05-15)
(China Post, By Kuan-lin Liu) The Taiwanese community in Panama has expressed its support for Taiwan's right to attend the WHA conference by making a statement in line with the Taiwanese government's own statements. They also mentioned that the Chinese government should not allow political tensions to affect the Taiwanese people's right to health. Taiwan has stated that they are still trying to obtain an invitation and will attend the conference even if they do not receive one.

DPP Plans Monthly Event to Feature Foreign Nations (2017-05-15)
(Taipei Times, By Su Fang-ho and Jake Chung) The DPP is to hold an event referred to as the "Global Corner" to feature a group of foreign nations. This event, held monthly, will be done in an effort to boost Taiwan's image internationally. This would enable the DPP to expose workers to the cultures and significant aspects of the foreign nations that are important to Taiwan.

Tsai Urged to Proclaim Independence (2017-05-16)
(Taipei Times, by Chen Wei-han) Pro-independence groups yesterday urged President Tsai Ing-wen to proclaim the nation’s independence and sovereignty, claiming that her administration has sidestepped the issue. Independence advocates argued that China cannot resort to military means to annex Taiwan in the current international environment, but that China has penetrated Taiwan with its espionage, media and business influence.

U.S.-China Relations
U.S. Strikes China Trade Deals but Leaves Major Issues Untouched (2017-05-11)
(New York Times, By Keith Bradsher) Agreements covering beef, poultry and financial services reverse stances held by the Obama administration and sidestep touchier issues such as steel.

China And US Can Cooperate – Not Compete – Over Afghanistan, Says Envoy (2017-05-13)
(South China Morning Post, By Laura Zhou and Jun Mai) Afghanistan is a unique platform for cooperation, rather than competition, between China and the US in the face of rising challenges and threats to regional peace and stability, the Afghan Ambassador to China said. In an exclusive interview with the Post, Janan Mosazai added that China, an immediate neighbour with a growing economic footprint in Afghanistan and in the wider region, could become a key player in the effort to revive the war-torn nation’s role as a regional hub.

Chasing After the Kushners in China
 (2017-05-15)
(New York Times, By Javier C. Hernández) “As journalists in China, we are accustomed to dealing with harassment. But we don’t typically encounter bullying at events where American companies hold court."
South China Sea Disputes and Other Regional Issues
Territorial Disputes

Trump’s Mixed Signals on South China Sea Worry Asian Allies
 (2017-05-10)
(New York Times, By Javier C. Hernández) As the president seeks closer ties with China, experts say relations with Southeast Asian countries may suffer if he doesn’t contest Beijing’s claims in the disputed sea.

Is China Winning in the South China Sea? (2017-05-13)
(The Diplomat, By Sukmawani Bela Pertiwi) In the case of the South China Sea, the dispute is more complex as the world has a stake in the freedom of navigation in the disputed sea to preserve vital maritime trade. Having said that, it’s too soon to conclude that the recent developments mean China is winning in the South China Sea.

US Navy’s $13 Billion Supercarrier to Begin Acceptance Trials in May (2017-05-15)
(The Diplomat, By Franz-Stefan Gady) The U.S. Navy’s long-delayed nuclear-powered Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78), the lead of ship of the United States’ latest class of carriers, will begin acceptance trials this month, according to acting Navy Secretary Sean Stackley, USNI News reports.

US, Singapore, Thailand Launch First Trilateral Exercise in South China Sea (2017-05-15)
(The Diplomat, By Prashanth Parameswaran) Last week, the navies of the United States, Singapore, and Thailand conducted a military exercise in the South China Sea. The engagement was yet another manifestation of ongoing U.S. attempts to multilateralize existing drills with Asian states in the face of rising security challenges in the region.

Government Says Document Indicates Earliest Landing In Senkaku Islands Was By Ryukyu Royalty In 1819 (2017-05-15)
(Japan Times) The government has announced the discovery of a document indicating that royal family members of the Ryukyu Kingdom, which ruled an area in modern-day southwestern Japan, landed on the Senkaku Islands in 1819, the oldest recorded visit to the Japanese-administered islands. The documented visit precedes that of a Briton in 1845, previously considered the first person to set foot on the Senkakus.

China And Vietnam Agree To Keep South China Sea Tensions In Check (2017-05-15)
(Japan Times/Reuters) China and Vietnam will manage and properly control their maritime disputes, avoiding actions to complicate or widen them, so as to maintain peace in the South China Sea, the two nations said in a joint communique China released Monday.

The U.S., China, and the Korean Peninsula 

Trump on Collision Course With South Korean Leader on Dealing With North (2017-05-09)
(New York Times, By David E. Sanger) Moon Jae-in wants to maintain the status quo and avoid possible hostilities with North Korea, while President Trump wants to apply maximum pressure.

South Korea’s New President, Moon Jae-in, Promises New Approach to North
 (2017-05-10)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-hun) Mr. Moon said he was willing to meet with the North’s leader, Kim Jong-un, if the circumstances were right.

Moon Jae-in of South Korea and China Move to Soothe Tensions
 (2017-05-11)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-hun) President Moon Jae-in spoke with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, and said he would send a delegation to Beijing to discuss friction over a U.S. antimissile system.

North Korea Launches a Missile, Its First Test After an Election in the South (2017-05-13)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-hun) The South Korean military was analyzing data to determine the type of missile launched by the North and whether the test was a success.

North Korea Says Missile It Tested Can Carry Nuclear Warhead
 (2017-05-14)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-hun) The North warned that the missile, which landed in the sea between the North and Japan, could reach American military bases in the Pacific.

China ‘May Back’ New UN Sanctions Over North Korean Missile Test (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Liu Zhen) China might support a new round of UN sanctions against North Korea after Pyongyang launched another missile test just hours ­before Beijing held its biggest diplomatic event of the year, the belt and road forum, observers said.
PLA, Military Balance and Arms Sales
The CMC General Office: Recentralizing Power in the PLA (2017-05-11)
(Jamestown Foundation, By Joel Wuthnow) The thinking is that PLA modernization previously stalled (and corruption flourished) because too much authority had been ceded to the four general departments, seven military regions, and other power centers in the PLA that were more interested in protecting their own “vested interests” than in reform. Over the last few years, Xi has tried to restore power to the center in several ways: abolishing the general departments, increasing the autonomy of supervisory organs such as the Audit Office and the military legal system, and overseeing a major anti-corruption campaign in the PLA. Yet all these changes leave open a question: how does an 11-member CMC (not to mention Xi personally) exercise oversight over a 2.3 million-person organization?

Taiwan to Bolster US Jobs with Continued Arms Buys
 (2017-05-13)
(Taipei Times/Reuters) Taiwan plans to continue purchasing arms from the United States, which has led to a boost in employment numbers in various U.S. states. Taiwan says their efforts to build their own defenses has not affected their purchasing habits from the U.S. and that U.S. - Taiwan ties were a top priority.

F-35s For Taiwan? Expect to Wait a Long Time (2017-05-15)
(China Post, By Joseph Yeh) Taiwan has shown a renewed interest in purchasing F-35s from the United States over the last few weeks. The biggest road block for Taiwan obtaining these jets is Taiwan's low defense budget and the extremely high cost of each fighter jet. Chieh Chung offers his thoughts on the situation and why Taiwan needs the fighter jets.

KMT Academics Decry Military Spending (2017-05-16)
(Taipei Times, by Abraham Gerber) President Tsai Ing-wen’s administration has failed to realize its promise to meaningfully increase military spending, academics affiliated with the Chinese Nationalist Party’s National Policy Foundation think tank said yesterday, criticizing the feasibility of the government’s submarine program and continued recruitment difficulties.

China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China's Foreign Relations

Xi And Putin In Joint Push To Forge Stronger Sino-Russian Ties (2017-05-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) President Xi Jinping used talks with his Russian counterpart on Sunday to push for stronger ties “in all circumstances”, as Beijing and Moscow pursue a united front on key global issues. Xi pressed the cause as he met Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of a forum for the “Belt and Road Initiative” in the Chinese capital.

EU Wants Faster China Action On Investment Agreement and Steel Cuts
 (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Wendy Wu) The European Union is actively pushing China to speed up talks over an investment agreement, and to take concrete action to cut its huge overcapacity in steel, according to European Commission Vice President Jyrki Katainen. In an interview with the South China Morning Post on the sidelines of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing on Sunday, Katainen said he will be taking up the two issues directly when he meets China’s Vice Premier Ma Kai on Monday, ahead of the annual EU-China Summit due to be held in Brussels in early June.

China's Domestic Politics

A Robot Revolution, This Time in China
 (2017-05-12)
(New York Times, By Keith Bradsher) Car manufacturing in China, once labor-intensive, is now heavily automated.

Global Business Groups Urge Beijing to Delay Cybersecurity Law (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post/Associated Press) A coalition of 54 global business groups appealed to Beijing on Monday to postpone enforcing a cybersecurity law that they said violated Beijing’s free-trade pledges and might harm information security.

China, Addicted to Bootleg Software, Reels From Ransomware Attack
 (2017-05-15)
(New York Times, By Paul Mozur) As companies and officials scrambled to counter global hacking, the vulnerability caused by rampant piracy came into focus.

Tens of Thousands of Chinese Firms, Institutes Affected in WannaCry Global Cyberattack (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Zen Soo, Naomi Ng, and Stephen Chen) Tens of thousands of Chinese companies and institutions – including several major firms in Hong Kong – have been crippled by a global cyberattack as people returned to work on Monday. On mainland China, almost 30,000 organisations were affected, with universities bearing the brunt of the attack by ransomware WannaCry over the weekend, according to Chinese media reports

One Belt, One Road

Tightened Belt: China Skimps on Its Grand Trade Plan
 (2017-05-09)
(Wall Street Journal, By Andrew Browne) Four years after Mr. Xi launched the One Belt, One Road megaproject, domestic economic realities—slowing growth, mounting debt and fleeing capital—are catching up with the plan. 

Chinese Spending Lures Countries to Its Belt and Road Initiative
 (2017-05-10)
(Bloomberg) Hundreds of leaders and dignitaries from 110 participant countries will gather at a summit in Beijing this month to discuss the grand plan. Countries along the routes account for 16 percent of the global economy today and about a fifth of global trade. But with about 43 percent of the world’s population, China is betting that’s set to increase.

China’s Global Power Projection Hit With “Strategic Overdraft” (2017-05-11)
(Jamestown Foundation, By Willy Wo-Lap Lam) Despite the tough challenges facing the Chinese economy, President and “core leader” Xi Jinping is going ahead with ambitious plans to project Chinese power worldwide including the landmark One Belt One Road (OBOR) initiative. Xi is expected to announce a new series of projects linking China with Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa at an OBOR international forum scheduled for mid-May Beijing. Xi, who is personally supervising the scheme in via the Central Leading Group on OBOR Construction Work, apparently hopes to boost China’s agenda-setting capacity in global economic discourse.

China's Spending $500 Billion to Reshape the World in Its Image (2017-05-11)
(Bloomberg) China’s president will host almost 30 world leaders in Beijing on Sunday at the first Belt and Road Forum, the centerpiece of a soft-power push backed by hundreds of billions of dollars for infrastructure projects. More than 100 countries on five continents have signed up, showing the demand for global economic cooperation despite rising protectionism in the U.S. and Europe.

China Reaches Out To South Korea With Late Invite To Global Trade Meeting (2017-05-12)
(South China Morning Post, By Laura Zhou) A delegation led by a lawmaker of the South’s ruling Democratic Party, Park Byeong-seug, will attend the Belt and Road Summit in the Chinese capital on Sunday and Monday, according to a diplomatic source and a South Korean media report. South Korea was not initially invited to the gathering, at which China will showcase to world leaders its ambitious project to expand global trade with billions of dollars of infrastructure investment. Observers said recent tensions over Seoul’s deployment of a US missile defence system were behind that decision.

US To Send Top Adviser To China’s Belt And Road Summit As Part Of Sino-US Trade Deal (2017-05-12)
(South China Morning Post, By Wendy Wu, Zhuang Pinghui, and Stuart Lau) The United States will send a delegation led by a top White House adviser to the ‘Belt and Road’ summit in Beijing this weekend as part of a trade deal between China and Washington.The US’ attendance at the upcoming two-day forum that starts on Sunday was listed among the 10-point initial results of the 100-Day action Plan of the US-China Comprehensive Economic Dialogue, released by China on Friday.

Behind China’s $1 Trillion Plan to Shake Up the Economic Order (2017-05-13)
(New York Times, By Jane Perlez and Yufan Huang) In stark contrast to President Trump’s “America First” mantra, the “One Belt, One Road” plan aims to remake global commerce in China’s image.

US Warms Up To ‘Belt And Road’ Business Potential (2017-05-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Stuart Lau) US envoys at the “Belt and Road Initiative” summit in Beijing said on Sunday that their country aimed to make the most of the grand plan’s business opportunities, walking back from US ­President Donald Trump’s antiglobalisation rhetoric and Washington’s earlier wariness. Foreign policy analysts said the shift in the US’ position reflected fears in Washington of being left out in the cold as other countries climbed aboard the China-led project.

Xi’s US$113b Pledge ‘More Seed Fund Than Credit Pipeline’ (2017-05-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Wendy Wu and Frank Tang) Chinese President Xi Jinping’s pledge to invest at least 780 billion yuan (US$113 billion or HK$880 billion) via its state funds and banks to finance projects in the “Belt and Road ­Initiative” is more of a seed fund than a credit pipeline for the ­ambitious plan to expand China’s economic and potentially political influence in nearly 70 countries in Asia, Europe and Africa.

U.S. Firms Want In on China’s Global ‘One Belt, One Road’ Spending (2017-05-14)
(New York Times, By Keith Bradsher) General Electric, Citibank and Honeywell are among companies angling for potentially big business, but foreign firms must contend with Chinese rivals.

Xi Jinping Positions China at Center of New Economic Order (2017-05-14)
(New York Times, By Jane Perlez and Keith Bradsher) Mr. Xi pledged more than $100 billion for development banks in China that he said would spearhead vast spending on infrastructure across Asia, Europe and Africa.

Xi’s New Silk Road ‘Has No Political Agenda’ (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Sidney Leng) President Xi Jinping said Beijing would hold its second Belt and Road summit in 2019, as he spoke briefly at his press conference to close China’s biggest diplomatic event of the year on Monday evening.

Next Silk Road Summit Set For 2019 As Beijing Ramps Up Global Drive (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Jane Cai) China capped its ­diplomatic event of the year with a commitment on Monday to host another international summit in 2019 to promote its grand globalisation strategy. The two-day Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation closed in Beijing, with President Xi Jinping declaring the event a success and China signing deals with 68 countries to jointly develop infrastructure along the new Silk Road trade routes.

China’s Global Trade Plan Is Open To All And No Threat To Any, Xi Jinping Says (2017-05-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Frank Tang) China’s grand globalisation strategy will not exclude any party or target anyone, Chinese President Xi Jinping told world leaders said on the second day of a forum in Beijing to promote his idea of connecting the world’s economies and boosting growth.

What Did China Accomplish at the Belt and Road Forum? (2017-05-16)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) China put on an impressive diplomatic show, but had little new to say about its flagship project.

Contact: James Lee, Senior Editor 

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New Publication Taiwan and China: Fitful Embrace by Lowell Dittmer (ed.) (University of California Press) 
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