Chinese New Year

A crowded street during the Spring Festival in Xunpu village, Fujian province, on 21 February 2024.

[Big read] Red-hot Spring Festival spending brings boom to China's economy?

Red-hot spending data over the recent Spring Festival in China caused the stock market in Hong Kong to rise three days in a row after it resumed trading first, with the country’s A-shares following suit a few days later. How long will this recovery in spending and such positive market sentiments last? Will this allow the Chinese economy to shake off fears of deflation and get over its confidence crisis? What other stabilising measures will the authorities introduce?
This photo taken on 21 February 2024 shows an employee working on a new energy vehicle assembly line at a BYD factory in Huai'an, Jiangsu province, China. (AFP)

More Chinese EV brands to falter as market realigns

China’s electric vehicle (EV) market has seen a slew of bad news this year, with issues coming from car owners and manufacturers. While the sector is going through a necessary rite of passage for emerging industries, this is also a crucial test of whether the EV industry can uplift itself and adapt with the changing times. Lianhe Zaobao correspondent Chen Jing tells us more.
A God of Fortune distributes hongbaos to visitors at Liandao Scenic Area in Lianyungang city, Jiangsu province, on 14 February 2024. (Xinhua)

Rising hongbao rates are putting pressure on Chinese youths

As China’s tradition of giving red packets or hongbaos during festive occasions puts young people under pressure, they are pushing back by giving fewer hongbaos or none at all, hoping that their refusal to conform will help to bring the focus back to the sentiment behind the giving.
Villagers sell agricultural products on train, Guizhou province, China, on 25-27 January 2024. (Screen grab from CCTV)

[Video] Farmers’ markets on China's 'slow trains': Going places

In today’s fast-paced world, China's “slow trains” remain essential. They stop at many otherwise inaccessible areas, providing transport for rural residents and a means for them to bring their agricultural products to nearby towns. Designated cabins on the train turn into makeshift farmers' markets, especially in the run-up to Chinese New Year.
Dragon dancers perform at a park on the first day of the Lunar New Year of the Dragon in Beijing on 10 February 2024. (Greg Baker/AFP)

‘Loong’ or dragon?

There has been a recently renewed debate over whether the Chinese 龙 should be translated into English as "dragon" as it is currently known now, or whether there should be a new translation: “loong”. While there is some historical evidence that “loong” was actually one early translation, perhaps today it might be difficult for it to catch on.
Customers wait outside a restaurant at a shopping mall in Shenzhen, China, on 19 January 2024. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

Hong Kongers flock to Shenzhen for value-for-money CNY reunion dinners

As the Chinese New Year approaches, many Hong Kongers have the tradition of travelling to Shenzhen to enjoy reunion dinners at lower cost with better service compared with back home. Lianhe Zaobao journalist Daryl Lim speaks with diners and restaurant managers to find out more about this trend during the festive season.
Long table banquet held in Habo Village, Yunnan, China, on 3 January 2024. (CCTV)

[Video] Long Table Banquet: A thousand-people feast

China’s Long Table Banquet, a time-honoured tradition of the Miao, Dong, Hani, and Yi peoples, is a grand spectacle where thousands gather to indulge in a feast of delicacies and performances. Apart from ringing in the new year, the event is one of thanksgiving at the close of harvest season.
Shirtless performers strike molten iron at Xingyi, Qianxinan Buyi and Miao Autonomous Prefecture, Guizhou province, China, on 27 January 2024. (NurPhoto via Reuters Connect)

[Video] Striking iron flowers: An art for the brave

In the 1000-year-old folk art of "Striking Iron Flowers" (打铁花), molten iron is struck with wooden rods to create sparks cascading through the sky like blossoming flowers. With temperatures of molten iron soaring to 1600°C, artisans bear countless scars across their bodies.
The dragon in Singapore's Chinatown has four claws. (SPH Media)

Year of the Dragon: How to tell a 'real' dragon from a 'fake' one

Commentator Zhang Tiankan notes that the mythical Chinese dragon has gone through numerous iterations over a long history, and there is not one definitive version of it, much less one “correct” number of claws that it should have. As long as the general image is in line with its majestic and fantastical heritage, the number of claws is secondary.