Han Yong Hong

Associate Editor, Zaobao; Editor, Zaobao.com

Yong Hong is an associate editor of Zaobao and the editor of Zaobao.com. She joined Lianhe Zaobao as a journalist in 2000, covering theatre, music and visual arts. In 2005, she was assigned to the Beijing bureau as a correspondent, and became the chief correspondent in 2009. She received the Business China Young Achiever Award in 2011, making her the second recipient of this award, and the first journalist to receive this recognition.

Signage at the Alibaba office in Beijing, China, on 17 January 2023. (Bloomberg)

Will Beijing truly 'reconcile' with Chinese private enterprises in 2023?

Verbal sparring by Chinese internet opinion makers seem to suggest that the winds are blowing in favour of private firms at the moment. But will officials be able to walk the talk in their quest to use the private sector to drive China’s economic growth?
A South Korean soldier wearing personal protective equipment guides a group of Chinese tourists for Covid-19 tests upon their arrival at the Incheon International Airport in Incheon, South Korea, 4 January 2023. (Kim Hong-Ji/Reuters)

China-South Korea relations challenged amid tit-for-tat travel controls

Since last month, China and South Korea have been engaged in a tussle of tit for tat when it comes to Covid-19 travel controls. From visa suspensions to “yellow tags” on Chinese travellers entering South Korea, it remains to be seen whether the current back and forth will affect months of China’s diplomatic efforts with South Korea, especially since Yoon Suk-yeol took office.
Commuters at a subway station in Shanghai, China, on 3 January 2023. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

For better or worse: China's dash towards post-Covid normalcy

The ill-prepared nature of China’s opening up has led to a sudden rise in infections. While major cities such as Beijing and Shanghai have seemingly traversed this peak and are showing signs of economic recovery, China as a whole still has some ways to go, especially in addressing the people’s needs. Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong tells us more.
This photo taken on 10 December 2022 shows passengers arriving at Hankou Railway Station in Wuhan, Hubei province, China. (AFP)

Chinese economy in 2023: Worse before it gets better

As Chinese officials review the year’s economic work and set the tone for macroeconomic policies in the coming year, Han Yong Hong assesses that the new team formed after the 20th Party Congress will have its work cut out reviving the Chinese economy amid tough challenges.
This photo taken on 30 November 2022 shows people inside a subway train in Haizhu district, Guangzhou city, in China's Guangdong province, following the easing of Covid-19 restrictions in the city. (CNS/AFP)

China is finally easing Covid rules, but not all are happy

The Chinese central government has not mentioned the “dynamic zero-Covid” policy as of late, sparking hopes that it will further ease Covid-19 control measures. With public anger boiling over in the form of protests in several cities, more signs of easing are needed. The path to reopening will not be smooth, but Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong notes that any form of progress towards normalcy would be reassuring for the Chinese people.
Richard Liu Qiangdong, founder of JD.com. (JD.com website)

Salary cuts for senior managers: Is JD.com founder Richard Liu championing ‘common prosperity’?

JD.com founder Richard Liu has been in the news lately following an announcement that the company is set to improve social benefits for rank-and-file employees, while cutting salaries for senior management. While it seems to kill many birds with one stone, is this a long term solution for private firms?
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks with China's President Xi Jinping at the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia, 16 November 2022. (Adam Scotti/Prime Minister's Office/Handout via Reuters)

Why Xi thinks Canada's conduct was 'not appropriate'

After details of Chinese President Xi Jinping and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s informal discussion during the G20 meeting was reported in Western media, Xi followed up with Trudeau to express his displeasure. However, the interaction sent Western media into a frenzy, reporting that Xi “confronted” or “scolded” Trudeau. In light of the sensationalisation of the incident, China may need to be more familiar with how the media in Western democracies work.
ASEAN leaders at the opening ceremony of the 40th and 41st Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Summits in Phnom Penh on 11 November 2022. (Tang Chhin Sothy/AFP)

APEC, G20 and ASEAN summits: SEA nations play hosts in global diplomacy

ASEAN is set to play host to world leaders, with three major events coming up over the next two weeks in Cambodia, Indonesia and Thailand. The highlight is the G20 summit in Bali, where US President Joe Biden and Chinese President Xi Jinping are expected to meet face-to-face for the first time. Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong analyses what we can expect from these meetings.
A member of the security staff keeps watch in front of the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, on 16 October 2022, ahead of the opening session of the 20th Party Congress. (Noel Celis/AFP)

Beijing faces a huge deficit of trust after 20th Party Congress

As members of the 20th Politburo and its Standing Committee take the helm and usher in a new era of “China-style modernisation”, the market and public are showing clear signs of anxiety and dissatisfaction. Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong notes that the new leadership will have their work cut out for them to deliver the Chinese story well to its people and the outside world.