SAA Launches Direct Service to Guangzhou – China’s ‘Manufacturing Hub’

South African Airways (SAA) announced on Sunday that it will launch direct flights between Johannesburg and Guangzhou, China, on September 18, 2019, giving customers access to the heart of China’s export led manufacturing industries.

According to a statement by SAA, this is yet another strategy implementation initiative aimed at enhancing its route network.

“The decision to launch this direct service between Johannesburg and Guangzhou means we remain on track in executing our strategy to transform SAA into a fit for the future airline that will operate both efficiently and competitively,” commented SAA CEO Vuyani Jarana.

The Guangzhou route will cater for a spectrum of travellers between Johannesburg and China including business and corporate travellers and will be of special interest to traders. Cargo operations will complement the viability of this route considering that high value cargo is sourced from Guangzhou.

SAA will be the only carrier operating a direct service between Johannesburg and Guangzhou, with flight time of approximately 13 hours and 40 minutes, providing the shortest travel time on a nonstop basis between the two points.

There will be three new flights per week to Guangzhou, in South China, and these will complement SAA’s current operations to Hong Kong. This means, SAA will fly four times a week to Hong Kong. Airbus A340-300 aircraft will operate both the Guangzhou and Hong Kong routes.

Guangzhou is the largest city in the Guangdong province in South China and the third largest Chinese city after Beijing and Shanghai. It is an important transportation hub and trading port, located on the Pearl River about 120km Northwest of Hong Kong.

“Adding a direct service to mainland China, combined with our current popular flights to Hong Kong provides SAA with immense growth opportunities to and from mainland China. It also gives our traders access to the centre of Chinese manufacturing,” said Jarana.

The province of Guangdong is the centre of China’s export led manufacturing industries and described as “the world’s manufacturing hub”. Formal and informal traders source the majority of goods purchased in Sub-Saharan Africa from the province, due to Africa’s poor manufacturing capacity.

For more travel options for SAA customers flying to and from Guangzhou, the airline has interline agreements with China Southern Airlines, China Eastern, Air China and Hainan Airlines.

SAA said it is also negotiating a code share agreement with Hong Kong Airlines, anticipated to be in place this financial year, for further travel options for customers travelling beyond Hong Kong. Hong Kong airlines will codeshare on SAA’s Hong Kong-Johannesburg sector and provide feeder traffic from Japan, Korea, Philippines and China.

 

For information as to how Relocation Africa can help you with your Mobility, Immigration, Research, Remuneration, and Expat Tax needs, email marketing@relocationafrica.com, or call us on +27 21 763 4240.

Sources: [1], [2]. Image sources: [1], [2].

Chimamanda Adichie is Leading the Rise of an African Literature Wave in China

Dear Ijeawele is a forthright and frank book, a 15-step letter about how to raise a feminist child. But when it’s published in China around April this year, it will garner its author, the celebrated Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, a new status: becoming one of few African writers whose body of work has mostly, if not all, been translated to Chinese.

“By far the hottest African writer among Chinese fans today is Nigeria’s Adichie,” says Bruce Humes, an American linguist and Chinese literary translator. For years now, Humes has compiled a bilingual list of contemporary African fiction published in Chinese since the 1980s, putting together a list of novels, poetry, drama, and short story collections available to readers in mainland China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Humes, who has lived and worked across China since the late 70s, has so far identified 146 translated works from 66 African authors.

The list of translations, including the 13 interpreted in 2018, features a great variety in terms of language (French, English, Arabic, Portuguese), nationalities (Egypt, Kenya, South Africa, Angola, Nigeria, and more) and also genres. Yet only a few authors have had more than one volume dubbed into Chinese, and even fewer with two or more books. These include the likes of Nigerian authors Wole Soyinka and Chinua Achebe, Egyptian Nobel Prize winner Naguib Mahfouz, Kenya’s Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, South Africa’s Nadine Gordimer and J. M. Coetzee, and the sole Lusophone writer with at least three novels now in Chinese, Mia Couto of Mozambique.

By having all her three novels (Purple Hibiscus, Half of a Yellow Sun, and Americanah), lone short story collection (The Thing Around Your Neck), and two essays (We Should All Be Feminists, and Dear Ijeawele) translated to Chinese, Adichie proves that she’s a literature icon in China, says Diane Pan, who has edited her work at Shanghai 99 since 2013. (Yilin Press published Half of a Yellow Sun in 2010.) By tackling current issues including gender inequality, the immigrants’ experience, and racism, Pan argues the 41-year-old novelist helps readers introspect about life’s major questions.

By tapping into questions about human mobility, aspirations, and personal fulfillment, Adichie she adds, also builds a kind of intimacy between her protagonists and young Chinese readers many of whom are living and studying overseas.

“Her books can help people understand and cope with many disorienting predicaments,” Pan says.

Cultural diplomacy

The rise of Adichie’s translated books dovetails with China’s deepening presence in Africa, and claims it is only interested in doing business and has less concern for the continent’s people or future. Chinese media outlets have also been criticized for their depictions of Africans, and black people have often protested about how they are viewed and spoken of in daily interactions.

In recent years, Beijing has also moved to strengthen its “cultural diplomacy,” sponsoring Mandarin lessons across Africa, increasing its media presence and influence, and backing movies centered in fictitious African states. China’s new Silk Road plan, the multi-billion One Belt One Road initiative, also has a cultural and social component designed to enhance understanding between nations—and hence improve its “soft power” globally.

“Most Chinese readers have the faintest idea about Africa and African literature,” says John Wang, assistant professor at the school of translation studies in Jinan University. Translations, he explains, help “find common ground” and showcase “African literature as an important part of the world of literature.”

In a sign of growing interest in African literature, Humes notes that Chinese publishers now directly translate from Portuguese and Arabic texts, instead of commissioning interpretations from English-language translations. And unlike the past, when state-run imprints focused on ideologically-driven works like those of Léopold Sédar Senghor or Ngũgĩ or favored high-profile and award-winning writers like Gordimer, the profit motive has come to the fore in recent years.

Chinese readers, he said, are also interested in literary writers with African roots who have made a success in the West, including Adichie herself and Congolese novelist Alain Mabanckou.

Pan says they will publish between 8,000 and 10,000 copies of Dear Ijeawele for the first print, with Shanghai 99 selling more than 100,000 copies of her previous works. Humes notes that if a scribe has three or more books translated, “we can assume his or her works are selling fairly well.” And in the wake of growing political, economic, and cultural Sino-African exchanges, Humes says more translation projects will come underway.

“As China seeks to project its soft power and make friends, it makes sense that further collaboration will involve other African countries in 2019 and beyond.”

 

For information as to how Relocation Africa can help you with your Mobility, Immigration, Research, Remuneration, and Expat Tax needs, email marketing@relocationafrica.com, or call us on +27 21 763 4240.

Sources: [1], [2]. Image sources: [1], [2].

North Korea and China’s Secret Meeting

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has made his first foreign trip since assuming power in 2011, meeting China’s President Xi Jinping in Beijing and discussing giving up the country’s nuclear weapons, according to Chinese state media.

Kim, who made the surprise trip to the Chinese capital at Beijing’s request, said he felt compelled to personally inform President Xi of the rapid diplomatic developments on the Korean Peninsula in recent weeks, Xinhua reported.

The visit represents stunning shift for Kim, who appears to be fashioning himself as a leader in search of a peaceful solution to the crisis on the Korean Peninsula. It’s in sharp contrast to 2017, when Kim oversaw a string of missile and nuclear tests that drew the ire of the international community.

Kim’s trip was the first of three potential meetings with some of the world’s most powerful leaders.

Kim is set to attend a summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in next month, and will later meet US President Donald Trump, in what would be an historic first encounter between a sitting US President and a North Korean leader.

Trump tweeted Wednesday that Xi told him his meeting with Kim went “very well.” The US President added he was optimistic Kim will “do what is right for his people and for humanity. Look forward to our meeting!”

Key points:

  • Kim said he was committed to denuclearization but with conditions, Xinhua reported
  • Xi hosted a grand banquet for Kim at the Great Hall of the People
  • Kim traveled to China by train on March 25 and spent two days in Beijing
  • North Korean state media said Xi accepted an invitation to visit Pyongyang
  • The White House said it was informed of the meeting Tuesday

North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong Un, left, and China’s President Xi Jinping, right, are seen at a banquet in this photo released by North Korean state media.

Analysts said the visit was a courtesy call aimed at shoring up Pyongyang’s ties with China, a traditional ally and major trading partner. Leaders from the two countries haven’t met since 2011, with ties souring after Kim purged some of Beijing’s allies in North Korea and the isolated nation relentlessly pursued its development of nuclear weapons.

Kim called for a “new era” in bilateral relations in a letter to Xi published by the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), which also reported that Xi had accepted an invitation to visit North Korea “at a convenient time.” The acceptance of the invitation was not reported by Chinese state media although Xinhua said that Xi would keep in frequent contact, which could include exchange of visits.

“In this spring full of happiness and hopes, I believe my first meeting with General Secretary Xi Jinping will yield abundant fruits of DPRK-China friendship, and facilitate peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula,” said Kim, referring to Xi by his title as leader of the Chinese Communist Party.

North Korean state media made no mention of nuclear weapons in its coverage of the meeting.

Xi said Beijing is willing to work with North Korea to “promote long-term healthy and stable development of China-DPRK relations, benefit the two countries and two peoples, and make new contribution to regional peace, stability and development.”

 

For information as to how Relocation Africa can help you with your Mobility, Immigration, Research, and Remuneration needs, email marketing@relocationafrica.com, or call us on +27 21 763 4240.

Source: CNN [1]. Image sources: [1].

China Starts Collecting Environment Tax

China has begun to collect an environment tax, aimed at better protecting the environment and cut pollutant discharge, as the country’s Environmental Protection Tax Law took effect on January 1, 2018.

The introduction of the tax called an end to the ‘pollutant discharge fee’ which China had been collecting for nearly 40 years.

This is China’s first tax clearly designed for environmental protection, which will help establish a “green” financial and taxation system and promote pollution control and treatment of pollutants, said Wang Jinnan, head of the Chinese Academy For Environmental Planning under the Ministry of Environmental Protection.

China had collected a ‘pollutant discharge fee’ since 1979, however, some local governments exploited loopholes and exempted enterprises that were otherwise big contributors to fiscal revenue. For years, regulators had suggested replacing the fee system with a law.

Under the Environmental Protection Tax Law, which targets enterprises and public institutions that discharge listed pollutants directly into the environment, companies will pay taxes for producing noise, air and water pollutants as well as solid waste.

Tackling pollution has been listed as one of the “three tough battles” that China aims to win in the next three years. The areas of focus were discussed at the recent Central Economic Work Conference, an annual meeting held in China, convened by the Central Committee of the Communist Party and the State Council, which sets the national agenda for the Economy of China and its financial and banking sectors.

China’s parliamentary elections are currently underway, having begun in October 2017, and will conclude in March 2018.

 

Sources: [1], [2], [3], [4], [5]. Image source: [1].