SCMP: “Migrant parents expressed disappointment yesterday after three of the largest magnets of migrant labour – Beijing, Shanghai and Guangdong – announced only a modest relaxation of residency restrictions for college entrance exams.
“Officials in the three regions each submitted plans in advance of the State Council’s year-end deadline for policies to overhaul the much criticised residency regime for the national entrance exams, or gaokao.
“Regions have long restricted the exams largely to pupils who can prove residency under the restrictive hukou registration system – limiting options for prospective students and forcing thousands of migrants to choose between leaving their jobs and separating from their children.”
“The Beijing municipal government released a “transitional document” yesterday that allows migrant pupils to sit for gaokao in Beijing from 2014, provided their parents have contributed to the social security fund for six consecutive years. Even then, exam takers would have access only to tertiary vocational colleges.
“Beijing authorities promised to draft a more detailed policy by the end of next year. Until then migrant pupils would be able to sit for the exams with a major caveat: they would have to take their scores back to their registered hometowns to be recruited.
“A tearful Fan Yuqing, an office worker with a 14-year-old son who moved to Beijing from Henan seven years ago, said she felt insulted.
“‘The policy amounts to telling us we’re second-class citizens no matter how long we’ve been living and working here,’ she said. ‘We must either take whatever the handouts are if we stay or we can simply leave.’”
For the full report, please visit SCMP website at:
SCMP reports: “At first glance, Xi Jinping’s weekend sweep through a pair of impoverished villages looks much like the usual year-end trips of his predecessor, Hu Jintao.
“But unlike Hu’s official tours, which had seldom stirred much public discussion, online or otherwise, Xi’s visit to the villages in Hebei province earned him rave reviews – even from some of the most critical pundits.
“The trick behind Xi’s public relations success seems simple enough: the new leader actually allowed his remarks and activities during the trip to be updated in almost real-time on microblogging sites.
“While such transparency has long been common practice elsewhere, political analysts described the access as ‘extraordinary and unprecedented’ in China. Previously, the travels of top leaders have been treated as state secrets and state media were barred from disclosing details until everyone was safely back in Beijing.
“But the decades-old taboo was seemingly laid aside yesterday, said Professor Zhang Lifan, a Beijing-based historian and analyst. He noted that both Xinhua and China Central Television ran almost live reports on Xi’s trip.
“Photos showing Xi walking on a snowy path chatting and holding hands with poor and elderly villagers were released by Xinhua and CCTV on their official weibo.
“Wow! Our top leader is visiting one of the poorest villages in the coldest season!” one microblogger named Yijinyudao wrote. “And the real-time updates have made it look even better.”
For the full report, please visit SCMP website at:
SCMP reports: “Party chief Xi Jinping said lifting tens of millions of people out of poverty remains the biggest challenge for the new leadership in its bid to build a moderately prosperous society by 2020, state media reported.
“Xi made the remarks during a visit to Luotuowan village and Gujiatai village in Baoding, Hebei province yesterday.
“CCTV showed footage of Xi checking out local groceries and chatting with villagers on their brick-beds, hands on laps and shoes off, in an apparent effort to display his personal touch.
“In his first trip to destitute rural areas since he took power last month, Xi also blasted widespread corruption, especially the embezzlement and misuse of funds aimed at reducing poverty.
“‘I am deeply unhappy and sometimes indignant over the cases that funds earmarked for poverty alleviation are intercepted, embezzled or diverted for other purposes,’ he was quoted as saying by Xinhua in its official Sina Weibo account.”
For details, please visit SCMP website at:
Chinese aircraft research workers are obviously overworked. As a result, another top engineer died of heart attack at the age of 46 after Luo Yang’s death on November 25.
SCMP reports: Guo Changchun – a top engineer who was in charge of the PLA’s most advanced fighter jet project, J-31 – died after a heart attack at his home on December 22, news portal sina.com reported, quoting unnamed sources at the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC). He was 46. Guo is the second top engineer at the AVIC-affiliated Shenyang Aircraft Corporation to have suffered a fatal heart attack recently. Luo Yang died on November 25 at 51.
According to Russian media, at the question of whether J-20 stealth fighter would use China-made engine, air force Major General Zhu Heping replied, “Yes.” Zhu did not go into details in his reply, but obviously his reply indicated China’s desire to use its own engine to avoid reliance on foreign source.
According to Russian media, J-20 has to be powered by engines with 18,000 kg thrust. China has been developing its WS-15 engine since 2006. According to US media, China will not be able to commission its J-20 in 2017 or 2019 if it failed to satisfactorily develop the engine by 2010.
According to Russian Military Industrial News Website, China is very much interested in Russian 117S engine, the engine used in Russian T-50 stealth fighter. Obviously, China has not imported 117S engine yet and is now using WS-15. However, the Russian Website says WS-15 is still at the stage of research and development.
According to speculation by British magazine “New Scientist” and Russian magazine “Newsland”, China has begun the research project of using laser propulsion for its space plane. With laser propulsion, a space plane will have very strong power to carry substantial load and fulfill various tasks. As a result, China will bring pressure on the US and Russia in the competition in the development of space flight equipment.
China’s official media reports that China’s state key laboratory for laser propulsion has been officially established, which marks a sound step forward in China’s exploration for the highly efficient aeronautical propulsion technology.
British “New Scientists” says that in laser propulsion high-energy laser is used to heat something and turn it into gas to propel the flight vehicle. It has the advantages of great propulsion force and low cost and can be used for lots of purposes such as launch of small satellite, removal of debris along the orbit of the flight vehicle and control of the status and orbit of a satellite. Using that technology the launching cost will be reduced to a few hundred dollars per kg from the nearly $10,000 per kg when rocket is used as launch vehicle now.
According to speculation by “Newsland”, obviously China set up the laboratory to seek application of the technology for the above-mentioned purpose. Very probably, China will begin to develop a flight vehicle driven by laser.
Sources: New Scientist, Newsland, blog.huanqiu.com
Five photos of 052D destroyer are posted at bbs.huanqiu.com
052D destroyer is China’s most advanced new destroyer with Next generation shipborne AESA radar comparable to US Arleigh Burke class destroyer.
Four of them are being built in Shanghai while two of the four were respectively launched in August and December, 2012.
Tonnage: 7,500-8,000 tons fully loaded.
Length: 160 m
Beam: 18 m
Draught: 6.5 m
Propulsion: CODOG. Two QC-280 gas turbine engine, each generate 28MW of power, and two diesel engine each generate 6 MW of power.
Speed: 30 knots.
Sensors and processing systems: Next generation shipborne AESA radar
Type 517M L band long range radar 
1 x PJ-38 130mm gun
64 VLS for FL-3000N and Haihonqi-9 surface to air missiles, cruise missiles, anti submarine missiles, anti ship missiles, some of which can be quad packed
30 mm remote controlled gun
Type 730 CIWS
6 324mm torpedo tubes
4 x 18-tube decoy rocket launcher
Helicopter landing platform
According to various Chinese internet sources Type 052D is equipped with a newest Chinese data link which has just completed national certification in Jun 2012 and publicized by the end of year. The data link is designated as JSIDLS (Joint Service Integrated Data Link System) and regarded as the Chinese equivalent of Link 16. It won a national award after completion.
Chinese military, diplomatic, and media circles claim that the Type 052D is Chinese Aegis. In the West, the Aegis system is a distinct, ‘brand-name’ phased-array system which allows multiple Aegis-capable warships to share tracking and targeting data. So far, there is no information whether “Chinese Aegis” has such functions.
Sources: bbs.huanqiu.com, chinatimes.com, china.com