Corruption

People work in a rice field of Runguo Agriculture Development Company during a media tour organised by the local government in Zhenjiang, in China's eastern Jiangsu province on 13 October 2020. (Hector Retamal/AFP)

Pandemic, floods, locusts and shrinking farming population: Will China suffer a food crisis?

China feeds about 20% of the global population, but its overall self-sufficiency in food seems to be dropping. Even though it is self-sufficient in some staples such as wheat, rice and corn, it is less so in others. In fact, it is the largest importer of food in the world. Recent calls by President Xi Jinping to cut food wastage has people thinking that political reasons aside, China’s food supply is at risk. This risk could yet be amplified by changes in land policies, rural-urban migration and more.
The great Chinese playwright, Tang Xianzu. (Internet)

In pursuit of ideals and love: The William Shakespeare of Chinese drama, Tang Xianzu

All his life, Ming dynasty playwright Tang Xianzu only wanted to stay true to himself, to do good and to make a mark. In his life as a government official, he sat on the sidelines and saw his ambitions erode with time. But he kept intact his passion for literary writing, gifting the world he left behind with classics such as The Peony Pavilion. Amid brokenness and deceit, he saw only beautiful things that were good and pure. Whether the world he created is a reality to be attained or a mirage...the dream lives on.
Steve Bannon and Guo Wengui (also known as Miles Kwok) appear at a news conference in New York, New York, 20 November 2018. (Carlo Allegri/REUTERS)

The ‘business’ between Steve Bannon and Guo Wengui

What exactly is the relationship between former Trump right-hand man Steve Bannon, and fugitive China businessman Guo Wengui? What do their dealings show about the scaremongering tactics and half-truths that can be used in any society? Zaobao associate editor Han Yong Hong examines Bannon’s recent arrest and how Guo fits in.
Medical disputes are on the rise in China. (iStock)

No end to China’s medical disputes

A cycle of distrust has meant that medical disputes in China are getting rowdier and more ridiculous by the day. With unrealistic expectations of medical care and disadvantageous policies deeply entrenched, medical practitioner and researcher Hayson Wang laments that the solution is nowhere in sight.
Crime boss Sun Xiaoguo in court. Sun was sentenced to death for multiple crimes, from rape to organised crime. (Xinhua)

Crime boss's death sentence and lessons for China’s economic development

The retrial and reinstatement of a death sentence meted out to crime boss Sun Xiaoguo is not only a win for those championing legal reform, but also those looking to strengthen China’s business environment. This landmark case exposes corruption ills and eradicates bad hats in one fell swoop.
Medical corruption in the form of hongbaos from patients is common in China. (iStock)

Medical corruption: A tough ailment to treat

Despite China’s anti-corruption efforts, one grey area that has been very difficult to clean up is the common practice of patients giving doctors hongbaos (monetary gifts in red packets), to ensure better care and treatment. Yu Zeyuan comments on the phenomenon.
In academia, covert corruption is more pronounced than overt acts of corruption that are explicitly prohibited by law. (iStock)

Eradicating academic warlords and bandits in Chinese academia

Deng Xize asserts that the oligopolistic system in Chinese academia facilitates a covert form of corruption. Specifically, academics double hat as government officials, thereby gaining advantages such as greater access to academic resources. For him, a clear separation between academics and politics is the most urgent reform needed in Chinese academia.