China Desk, Lianhe Zaobao

China Desk, Lianhe Zaobao

China Desk, Lianhe Zaobao

Lianhe Zaobao is a Chinese-language broadsheet published by Singapore Press Holdings. It was established in 1983, following the merger of Nanyang Siang Pau and Sin Chew Jit Poh, which were started in 1923 and 1929 respectively. It offers timely, credible news reports and a wealth of features, commentaries and opinion pieces. With a Singapore perspective, it also provides news and valuable insights on developments in East Asia, particularly China. In 1995, Lianhe Zaobao became the first Chinese-language newspaper in the world to go online with its portal zaobao.sg. The website has now grown into two sites — zaobao.com to cater to its readers in the greater China region, and zaobao.sg for readers in Singapore and elsewhere.

The paper has correspondents in Beijing, Chongqing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Taipei, Seoul and Tokyo, and experienced stringers in the Philippines, Japan, Europe and the US. It is one of the few foreign-owned Chinese-language media that is accessible online in China. Zaobao.com has an average of 5 million unique visitors per month, and a monthly pageview count of 100 million in China. The print edition of Lianhe Zaobao is also circulated in Indonesia, Brunei, Hong Kong, Vietnam and major cities of China like Beijing and Shanghai.

Visitors look at festive installations for Chinese New Year in Shanghai, China, on 2 February 2022. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

In China, no break on Chinese New Year’s Eve next year

Employees in China have little annual leave to begin with — what happens when the Chinese authorities announce that Chinese New Year’s Eve will not be a holiday in 2024?
This handout photograph taken on 11 October 2023 and released by Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade shows Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong (left) and Australian journalist Cheng Lei upon her arrival at the airport in Melbourne, Australia. (Sarah Hodges/Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)/AFP)

China-Australia relations warm up again, but will it last?

The recent release of Chinese Australian news anchor Cheng Lei and the lifting of tariffs on key Australian exports into China are signalling a detente in China-Australia relations. But given the impact of external geopolitical issues and China-US relations on China-Australia bilateral relations, will the warming relations and resumption of exchanges and trade stay the course? Lianhe Zaobao’s China Desk looks into the issue.
Russian President Vladimir Putin shakes hands with Chinese President Xi Jinping during a meeting at the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, China, on 18 October 2023. (Sputnik/Sergei Guneev/Pool via Reuters)

Russia’s reliance on China is growing, but will China benefit?

The outside world predicts that China and Russia are set to demonstrate a “no limits” relationship and join hands to counteract the US and its Western alliance. However, China seems to be gaining dominance in China-Russia relations as Moscow is trying to strengthen its already deep economic, military and energy cooperation with Beijing. Lianhe Zaobao’s China Desk and journalist Miao Zong-Han tell us more.
In March this year, a girl with the handle Arctic Catfish posted on Weibo boasting of her family’s wealth and her grandfather, a former director of a government agency. (Internet)

Descendants of China’s officials unlikely anti-corruption allies?

In China's anti-corruption efforts, one group of unlikely "allies" has emerged — the descendants of Chinese officials. These young people flaunt their family's wealth on social media, often prompting investigations that usually uncover confirmed corruption. But while this self-sabotage does work, systemic efforts are what is needed.
Customers queue outside an Apple store during the first day of sale of the iPhone 15 smartphone in Beijing, China on 22 September 2023. (Andrea Verdelli/Bloomberg)

Behind Apple’s ‘insult’ of China

A photo on Apple’s customer service webpage sparked controversy in China by featuring a person with “stereotypical” Chinese looks, with slit eyes and a long braid, coming under fire for “uglifying” Chinese people. While aesthetic preferences do differ, is there something deeper under the criticism of a stranger’s looks?
Escape from the British Museum follows the story of a jade teapot, played by Xiatian Meimei, that "escaped" and encountered Chinese reporter Zhang Yong-an, played by Jianbing Guozai, in the UK.

When a Chinese teapot wants to 'escape from the British Museum'

A short video series featuring Chinese artefacts in the British Museum has gone viral on social media in China, with viewers being moved by the story of a teapot trying to go home to China. But even as critics highlight the heavy sentiment and patriotism in the series, it has prompted calls by China and other countries for the British Museum to return artefacts to their rightful owners.
A shot of the 7.15 million RMB (US$0.98 million) Cowherd and Weaving Maid sculpture in Pingdingshan city, Lushan County, in China's Henan province. (Internet)

Why did China's Cowherd and Weaving Maid statue draw flak?

Vanity projects in China often do not pan out as planned, and the latest project to make the headlines is a sculpture of the Cowherd and Weaving Maid in Lushan county in Henan province, which has been criticised for being expensive and ugly, and possibly a copy of another sculpture. Another factor is possible corruption and personal benefit, which is also difficult to root out.
A couple prepare to pose for photos near the Forbidden City in Beijing, China, on 24 June 2023. (Greg Baker/AFP)

Regular phone calls and cash incentives: China goes the extra mile to encourage childbirth

Local governments in Chinese cities are taking extra measures to encourage couples to marry early and have children. However, given the youth’s shifting values and society’s tolerance for singlehood, these measures are falling short. Meanwhile, netizens are lamenting that government policies should not be coercive or objectify women.
An exterior view of the proposed site for the new China embassy, near Tower Bridge in London, Britain, on 23 June 2023. (Hannah McKay/Reuters)

It's complicated: Relocating the Chinese embassy in UK

The Chinese embassy in the UK seems to have missed the appeal deadline against a local council’s decision to block the embassy’s planned relocation to a historic site near the Tower of London. Will this affair mushroom into a larger diplomatic issue warranting reciprocal measures, with the UK government’s silence on the matter further grating on Beijing?