Archive for July 29th, 2009

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

“Reluctant to Face a Stronger China”

Mr Opfermann estimated that German companies were losing about €50 billion ($87 billion) and 30,000 jobs to industrial espionage every year. […]

“Old-fashioned” methods were also rife, such as phone-tapping, stealing laptops during business trips or Chinese companies that regularly sent spies to infiltrate companies.

“We’ve dealt with several cases of Chinese citizens on work experience in German companies who stole highly sensitive information from them,” Mr Opfermann said.

Sydney Morning Herald, July 25, quoting Walter Opfermann, office for counter-intelligence for the state of Baden-Wuerttemberg, commenting on alleged industrial espionage, notably from Russia and China

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“Those numbers he brought up were ridiculous […] Maybe there are some cases of stealing carried out by individuals or certain Chinese companies, but to say China depends on stealing from others is to discredit China’s 30 years of development. […] Opfermann is either feeling the threat from Chinese manufacturers or is reluctant to face a stronger China.”

Ding Chun, director of the Germany Study Institute of China, quoted by the China Global Times

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Related: German-Chinese Diplomacy: No Business as Usual, July 17

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Rebiya Kadeer in Japan: The Usual Procedures

World Uighur Congress chairwoman Rebiya Kadeer arrived in Japan for a three-day (BBC News) or five-day (Radio Australia News, July 28, 18:00 GMT) visit on Tuesday. Japan’s Foreign Ministry Press Secretary, Kazuo Kodama, said Mrs Kadeer had been granted a visa “based on the usual procedure”, so the visit should not cause any diplomatic problems. Meantime, Beijing has kicked off its own usual procedure.

Mrs Kadeer is likely to attend the Melbourne International Film Festival next week and she will give a televised speech there, reports the BBC. Beijing made repeated representations concerning her visit to Australia, too.

While the Chinese government wasn’t successful in blocking Mrs Kadeer’s visits to Japan and Australia, Beijing did initially succeed in persuading South Africa’s government not to allow the Dalai Lama to visit the country earlier this year. More or less informal Chinese organizations such as the United Chinese Association in New Zealand also lobbied against a visit by the Dalai Lama, but were less successful. Less than two months after the Tibetan spiritual leader’s visit to South Africa had been blocked, the country’s new government under president Jacob Zuma reversed the decision and said that the Dalai Lama could visit South Africa anytime. The Dalai Lama also visited France, Iceland, and the Netherlands in June this year.

India has apparently heeded advice from China’s government and denied a visa to Mrs Kadeer, while  Turkey intends to grant her one.

So long as Beijing’s representations stand a chance of being successful, even if only in some cases, they will probably remain a regular feature of international diplomatic routine.

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