Publisher’s Pronouncements (Feb 2021)
January 30 2021
by Gregory J. Hugh, Publisher – CEO, China Insight, Inc.
Now that Joseph R. Biden has been inaugurated as the 46th president of the United States, the country needs to unite again after experiencing a tumultuous period under the previous administration leading to a tragic demonstration at the nation’s capital on Jan. 6.
Garden fundraising
30 January 2021
By William Zajicek, contributor.
The St. Paul-Changsha China Friendship Garden, located in Phalen Park, Saint Paul, is seeking additional funds ($160,000) to complete Phase I of the garden construction and begin Phase II.
CNY do’s and don’ts
30 January 2021
By Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
Feb. 12 will be start of the Year of the Ox, which, according to Chinese tradition, is a symbol for wealth. So … here are a few tips on how to ring the year in the Chinese way.
App deadline for CGM
30 January 2021
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
The Chinese American WWII Veterans Recognition Project enters its fifth year with great anticipation for the award ceremony of the Congressional Gold Medal to more than 3,000 veterans who have applied for, and confirmed for this honor.
local national speedskating champion
30 January 2021
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
Whether the 2022 Winter Olympics will take place as planned in Beijing or not (China Insight, January 2021) is anyone’s guess at this point, but to the many hopeful participants, their training and laser-sharp focus are on getting to one of the three medal-winning podiums in their event in whatever city it may take place.
January 3, 2021
By Greg Hugh.
It has been a long and uncertain journey, but Chinese American veterans who served their country in World War II were finally awarded the Congressional Gold Medal on Dec. 9, 2020.
Efforts to enact the Congressional Gold Medal Act for these Chinese American veterans first began in December 2016. An exploratory committee led by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance (CACA) set out to secure the support of members of Congress. The bill, first introduced to the Senate and the House of Representatives in May 2017, was ultimately passed on and signed by President Donald Trump Dec. 20, 2018.
NY Chinatown images
December 31, 2020
by China Insight.
While air travel is still risky health-wise and lockdowns are common, here is a chance for us to “travel” and see New York City’s Chinatown.
The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) and the Center for Jewish History (CJH) are co-hosting a new online exhibition, “An Unlikely Photojournalist: Emile Bocian in Chinatown,” at
Beijing 2020 Olympics
December 31, 2020
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
The 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing opened with great fanfare. It was China’s debut on the world stage, an opportunity to showcase its history, culture and its athletes to a global audience. Fast forward to the 2022 Winter Olympics. Once again, Beijing will be the venue. However, circumstances are quite different.
2021 Chinese Holidays
December 31, 2020
Compiled by China Insight.
China’s 2021 holiday schedule will, per tradition, include two week-long holidays: Chinese New Year, aka Spring Festival, which will take place Feb. 11-17; and the National Day Holiday, Oct. 1-7.
Society Fat Size
December 31, 2020
compiled by China Insight.
On Nov. 11, a netizen posted an image of an apparel size chart seen at a Taiwanese chain store in China, saying, “I was shocked when I saw this size chart at a RT-Mart today. Am I completely rotten?” That image and post went viral and it enraged the online community, causing the company’s China Division to issue a public apology the following day.
November 2020
by Bill Zajicek, president, Minnesota China Friendship Garden Society.

There were two large volunteer projects at the garden this summer/fall. As a result, the rock garden was completely weeded and mulched; the donor stanchion received a new coat of paint, the Hmong Heritage Wall was painted, and as a gift from the Minnesota Peony Society, nine peonies were planted: three each of herbaceous “Krinkled White,” herbaceous “America Red” and tree peonies (Fuji-Zome-Goromo, Renkaku, Tai Hai)!!!
November 2020
By Elaine Dunn

The Hong Kong University (HKU) appointed two mainland Chinese scholars to its governing council, one of whom is alleged to have direct ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Book Review 202011
November 2020
By China Insight

You may notice the more-than-usual number of books included this issue. With Christmas giving around the corner and the snowy winter approaching, China Insight thought these titles may provide gift ideas or just material for a “good read” in front of the fireplace.
November 2020
– Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Commissioner Steve Grove announced the #GoodJobsNow campaign with Rick Trontvet from Marvin Windows in Warroad and Traci Tapani from Wyoming Machine in Stacy.
October 2020
Like other com- munities, our Chinese American commu- nity has been hit hard physically, mentally and economically.
Fall Colors
October 2020
In this year of coronavirus, we can find joy in the beauty of nature and celebrate festival traditions with tastes of mooncake on the trail.
Publisher Pronouncement
October 2020
With the 2020 U.S national election approximately a month away, will Asian American voters make a difference in the U.S. political fabric?
October 2020
The resolution “calls on all public of- ficials to condemn and denounce anti-Asian sentiment, racism, discrimination, and re- ligious intolerance related to COVID-19”
Canton Fair
October 2020
The 10-day virtual 128th session will go online from Oct. 15-24.

By Anthony James 

Although it is one of the world’s largest producers of food, China is in a pickle: the country is running out of farmland. That's pretty surprising for a country that feeds close to 20 percent of the world’s population and employs more than 300 million farmers. However, with rapid industrialization, mass migrations of farmers to the cities, and the growing demand for food by its middle class, how is China going to get more food?

One solution, similar to what’s been done in the United States and the European Union: provide incentives for domestic farmers to increase production. For the current Chinese administration, this was a bold step for a government that two decades ago provided practically zero farm subsidies. However, today, with farm aid, that is equivalent to 17 percent of the total value of farm production, Chinese farmers are almost as reliant on government help as EU farmers are. In fact, according to the 2013 Organization for Economic Cooperation Development (OECD) annual report on agricultural policies, China spent US$165 billion on farm support while the EU only spent US$106 billion. Farm protectionism is becoming big in China, and that doesn't exactly bode well for other countries.
At the moment, the country with the biggest magnifying glass on China's farm subsidies is Australia. Back in 2005, China and Australia started a joint feasibility study to look into creating a free-trade agreement to bridge commerce of goods, including agricultural goods, between the two countries. Though the Australians would have access to China's growing market, which would include agricultural goods, farm protectionism would definitely hurt their business. For Australian farmers, who only receive 3 percent of farm aid from the Australian government, opening their doors to China would mean fewer goods going out, and certainly more would be coming in, causing unfair competition. This challenge has already pushed Australia's politicians into coming down with some pretty harsh criticism on the current FTA. However, as of October, a final resolution had yet to made.
Though China is doing a lot to help its own farmers to produce more, it’s simply not just a matter of lack of farmers, but lack of farmland that is the leading obstacle to meeting its food demands. China has approximately 1.3 billion people, and it has only 9 percent of the world's farmland. This issue has caused the Chinese to look for purchasing land outside of China. In the most recent news, China made the largest land lease ever - three million hectares (11,500 square miles) of Ukraine, equivalent to 1/20th of the whole country  of Ukraine. China's land lease will prove to be a long-term trial for Ukrainians: on one hand it will bring billions of dollars into Ukraine, on the other hand, the food produced on the leased soil will only go toward feeding the Chinese and not Ukrainians.
China's growing agricultural demands are more far-reaching than just domestic troubles. Countries like Uganda are benefiting from joint Chinese-Ugandan agricultural projects that provide the sharing of farming practices, producing better crops. In order to satisfy the growing pork demand of China's middle class, many Chinese farmers are looking toward the U.S. pork producers. Where China once feared of being unwelcome to the table, this past May saw one of the largest American pork processers, Smithfield Foods Inc., being bought out by Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd. for US$4.7 billion.
China knows it has to do a lot quickly in order to keep its population from starving. A recent research publication by Standard Chartered PLC, a British multinational banking and financial services company, anticipated that China would be facing a scenario of importing 100 million tons of food every year into the country by 2033 in order to avoid a food shortage in the country.
While China may be protecting its own farmers and grabbing farmland from other countries, it also provides an example of China's potential economic power outside of what we normally see as basic stock market trading. Trade agreements or land purchases could provide powerful policy cards in which China could use to their advantage in international politics. Partnerships with poorer countries could provide win-win scenarios, but they could mean someone is going to lose. China’s rapid industrial expansion and rise of its middle class have taken away from one of its most powerful international assets, agricultural output. In order to meet its own needs, China might have to adopt more bullish tactics to increase domestic farming while buying away farms internationally.


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