#Shanghai may build new airport for business flights

Shanghai is considering building a new business aviation airport to meet the rising demand for business jets in the city, an official from the Shanghai Airport Authority said on Tuesday.

“In addition to the existing business aviation bases, Shanghai is also planning a new business aviation base elsewhere in the city,” said Jing Yiming, president of the Shanghai Airport Authority, at the opening of the three-day Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition.

“The market potential of Shanghai’s business aviation is huge, where we’ve seen more than 20 percent year-on-year growth in the sector during the past few years. So far, a total of 67 general aviation enterprises and 371 general aviation aircraft have been registered with the Civil Aviation Administration of China’s East China Regional Administration,” Jiang Huaiyu, an official from the administration was quoted as saying by the Shanghai Observer.

“So it is necessary for Shanghai to have an independent airport handling business and general aviation,” Jiang added.

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Currently, the second business aviation base at Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport is under construction, and is expected to become operational in 2018.

There were 900 turbine helicopters and 450 business jets in China as of 2016, with compound annualized growth rates of around 6 percent and 9 percent, respectively, over the past decade, said Charles Park, director of marketing analysis and planning of Honeywell Aerospace.

Read also: Top 10 world’s busiest airports

Wang Qi, vice-president of China sales and chief representative of ATR, said the development of general aviation will create opportunities for less populated airports.

“About 92 percent of passengers are concentrated in the top 50 of the nation’s 219 airports, while the bottom 100 airports only handle 1.6 percent of the total passenger flow, where general aviation can play their role,” said Wang.

The concept of general aviation is not limited to business needs, said Liao Xuefeng, chairman and CEO of China Business Aviation Group. “A variety of non-commercial actives including agricultural aviation and rescue can benefit from it.”

According to Bill Schultz, senior vice-president of business development in China for Textron Aviation, China’s general aviation market offers diversified jet demand.

The 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-20) has a similar supportive trend in areas including tourism, air mapping and emergency rescue, he said.

According to the guiding rules of the State Council on promoting the development of the general aviation industry, issued in 2016, China plans to build around 200 new general aviation airports between 2016 and 2020, bringing the nation’s total to about 500.

This article appeared on The China Post newspaper website, which is a member of Asia News Network and a media partner of The Jakarta Post

Max Verstappen on stage in China

Lewis Hamilton dominates Chinese Grand Prix ahead of recovering Sebastian Vettel and charging Max Verstappen

Lewis Hamilton scored his fifth Formula 1 career Chinese Grand Prix victory with a commanding performance in Shanghai to come home ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.

The British driver moved level with Vettel at the head of the drivers’ championship as a result, while Verstappen scored Red Bull’s first podium finish of the season.

After much of Friday’s practice running was lost when low cloud prevented the medical helicopter from operating as required, there was much speculation that the race could be disrupted as it took place in similar conditions.

That situation was avoided as the FIA arranged for the necessary neurosurgery staff to be transferred to a hospital closer to the circuit, but rain had fallen in the build up to the start and all the drivers – except Carlos Sainz – set off on intermediates.

Hamilton held his lead from pole position on the run to Turn 1 as Vettel, who had lined up strangely to the side of his grid box, defended hard from Valtteri Bottas through the long right-hander, while Daniel Ricciardo passed Kimi Raikkonen for fourth place.

Verstappen, who had started down in 17th after he suffered an engine problem in qualifying, had made it well into the top ten by the end of the first lap, which was disrupted by a collision between Lance Stroll and Sergio Perez at Turn 10 that ended the Canadian driver’s race.

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Cambodia – Microlender in monster deal

Hong Kong financial giant The Bank of East Asia and Sri Lanka’s LOLC announced on Friday that they have jointly acquired a majority stake in Prasac Microfinance, Cambodia’s largest microfinance institution (MFI) by assets, in what could be the largest acquisition of a Cambodian lender to date.

According to a joint company release, The Bank of East Asia (BEA) and LOLC acquired a controlling share of Prasac by purchasing minority stakes held by Dragon Capital Group Ltd, Belgian Investment Company for Developing Countries SA (BIO) and the Netherlands Development Finance Company (FMO).

The acquisition raises LOLC’s existing holding from 22 percent to 70 percent, with BEA holding 21 percent. Prasac retains the remaining 9 percent stake.

The deal was valued at $186 million by Sri Lankan media. Prasac and its shareholders could not be reached yesterday for confirmation, nor was the National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) available to confirm whether it had approved the acquisition.

Prasac is Cambodia’s largest deposit-taking MFI with an asset portfolio of $1.3 billion and over $660 million in deposits, according to the joint statement, which added that the deal would help pave the MFI’s path toward becoming a licensed commercial bank.

Sim Senacheert, CEO of Prasac, was quoted in the release as saying that BEA was a strategic investor that would “further contribute to sustainable economic development and financial inclusion in Cambodia”.

David Li, chairman and chief executive of BEA, said the deal marked the financial group’s first foothold in Cambodia and would help it expand its reach to the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC).

“Through Prasac, our bank will further strengthen its presence in Southeast Asia. This strategic investment will enable us to better capitalise on the opportunities arising from China’s ‘Belt and Road Initiatives’,” he was quoted as saying.

This is not the first time Prasac has worked toward securing a strategic investor, a move widely seen as the central bank’s requirements for commercial bank licence eligibility.

In August 2016, the NBC scuttled a deal between Prasac and South Korean financial giant Woori Bank for a 50 percent stake, claiming that the Korean lender was not one of the preferred bidder’s acknowledged by the independent regulatory body.

Cambodian MFIs have attracted the interest of international investors, with several large mergers and acquisitions announced in recent years. In January 2016, Thailand-based Bank of Ayudhya reached an agreement to acquire the local MFI Hattha Kaksekar – a deal that was valued at upwards of $140 million.

BEA’s stake in Prasac would mark the entry of Hong Kong’s third-largest bank into the Cambodian market. The financial group reported $98.7 billion in consolidated assets as of the end of last year.

Source – PhnomPenhPost

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Wayne Rooney has no appetite for China’s millions

Wayne Rooney waives an interim departure to China. The captain of Manchester United late in a statement to remain faithful to his club.

Rooney: I’m staying at United

Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney has addressed speculation about his future by releasing the following statement.

“Despite the interest which has been shown from other clubs, for which I’m grateful, I want to end recent speculation and say that I am staying at Manchester United,” declared the Reds’ record goalscorer.

“I hope I will play a full part in helping the team in its fight for success on four fronts.

“It’s an exciting time at the club and I want to remain a part of it.”

Rooney is still until mid-2018 under contract at Old Trafford. The chance that he leaves next summer still remains high.

Cambodia – JC Airlines is almost ready to fly

With its operating licence almost in the bag, JC International Airlines is gearing up to launch passenger service next month with two aircraft and an ambitious expansion plan.

The Cambodian-registered airline, managed by China’s Yunnan Jingcheng Group, the parent firm of China’s Ruili Airlines, expects to launch its first flight on March 17.

Initial service will cover domestic routes, flying between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, and Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, according to Cheav Kirirom, the airline’s production manager.

“This is a new brand of airline offering a full range of products and services to passengers, and providing excellent service and comfort, [as well as . . .] reasonable fares and good connections,” he said yesterday.

JC International Airlines has already received two Airbus A320s from Ireland-based air leasing company Avolon. The aircraft, one new and one briefly thrown into service by Air Berlin, will be configured as all-economy class with 180 seats.

According to Kirirom, two additional A320 aircrafts are on order and expected to arrive in June and November, respectively.

“As to plan, we are scheduled to add four aircrafts every year to operate on more prospective routes,” he said.

The additional planes will allow the airline to add international service starting with flights to Ho Chi Minh City, then adding routes to China and ASEAN countries.

Kao Sivorn, general director of the State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA), confirmed that JC International Airlines had acquired two A320s for its upcoming operations, and could expect to receive its air operator’s certificate (AOC) by early next month.

“We are now in the process of checking [the licence application,] which is now in the third phase in accordance with international regulation requirements,” he said.

“We expect it will be done and ready to receive its AOC in March.”

According to an operations plan submitted by the airline to the SSCA, and which differs slightly from details provided yesterday by the airline, JC International Airlines has applied to operate weekly service between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, three flights a week between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville, and three flights weekly from Siem Reap to Sihanoukville.

The airline has also applied to fly three times a week between Phnom Penh and Kuala Lumpur, three times a week to Singapore, four times a week to Hong Kong and once weekly to Bangkok.

“The main target of JC is Chinese passengers,” said Sivorn, adding that the airline’s management has laid out plans to operate a fleet of 20 Airbus aircraft by 2020.

JC International Airlines registered at the Ministry of Commerce in June 2014 with $1 million in registered capital. Its total investment is $100 million, according to Sivorn.

“Investment in airlines provides a lot of benefits to all sectors and promotes economic growth,” he said.

Source: PhnomPenhPost

Asia’s first vertical forest to be built in China

One of Stefano Boeri’s vertical forest projects in Milan, Italy.

Italian architect Stefano Boeri has revolutionized green architecture through his design of two vegetation-filled towers, known as Bosco Verticale (Vertical Forest), in Milan, Italy.

Such a structure will be built in the Pukou district of Nanjing, China, and consist of “1100 trees from 23 local species, as well as 2500 cascading plants and shrubs that will cover a 6000-square-meter area” according to Lonely Planet

More than just an aesthetic marvel, the construction will serve as a means to curb air pollution, which is highly prevalent in the area, while reinjecting biodiversity into the environment. The greenery enveloping the towers will both absorb surrounding carbon dioxide and provide oxygen.

It has been predicted that the two buildings will convert 25 tons of CO2 annually and produce 60 kilograms of oxygen a day. 

The taller tower will carry a green lantern at its tip and shelter a museum, a rooftop bar, as well as an architecture school. The smaller tower will serve as accommodation for Hyatt hotel, housing around 247 rooms.

Unique to the Asian region, the towers will be inaugurated some time in 2018 and will even aim to open in other Chinese cities, such as Shijiazhuang, Liuzhou, Guizhou, Shanghai and Chongqing. (nik/kes)

Source: TheJakartaPost

For many, dogs help fend off loneliness

More empty nesters seeking canine companionship

Han Zijing, 60, has become a renowned dog lover in her neighborhood in Chongqing. Every evening, she walks a brown toy poodle, a golden retriever and a mixed breed in a nearby park.

“I don’t like dog owners who have to walk their dogs by leash. My dogs are quiet and listen to my orders. When I walk, they walk; when I stop, they stop. And they don’t bark,” she said. “From this perspective, they are more ‘filial’ than my daughter.”

Like many Chinese mothers, Han placed all her attention on her only child. Her daughter has been a source of pride by “completing many tasks”, including getting into one of China’s most prestigious universities and finding a good job in Beijing.

But in recent years, Han has felt distanced from her daughter, who seems in no hurry to get married and have a child. Luckily, she has a dog to fill the void.

More empty nesters now have pet dogs to cope with loneliness caused partly by the family planning policy and urbanization, boosting the pet industry’s development.

Han said having a dog brought her more friends. This made her realize that she is not the only one tackling the loneliness after children grow up and leave the nest.

“When I walk my dogs, I meet many other elderly residents with dogs,” she said.

“I feel a little sad. Our children have settled in big cities and only visit us during holidays. Some get married and don’t want to live with us.”

According to the China National Committee on Aging, the country will have 118 million empty nesters in 2020. The physical and mental health of this demographic has become an issue of concern.

Once banned as a bourgeois pastime, owning a pet dog in Beijing became legal only in 1993. In the past 20 years, China has turned into the third-largest country for dog ownership, with 27.4 million pet dogs, after the United States and Brazil, according to a report by Forbes.com, citing data from China’s National Bureau of Statistics.

Yu Lianhai, founder of 51buydog, a pet store in Beijing, said strong demand for companionship brought by the family planning policy and urbanization has been driving the boom.

“Those born to a one-child family were placed under great expectations by the whole family when they were young,” he said. “Many left their hometown to seek better careers in first-tier cities.

“Most parents of the one-child generation are from rural areas. They are used to living with family and have close relations with neighbors. Naturally, they’d feel lonely after their children leave them. One solution is to raise a dog.”

Yu has been in the pet business for more than two decades. He said the most frequent phrase he heard from buyers is “raising a dog is more rewarding than raising a child”.

Zheng Richang, a psychology professor at Beijing Normal University, has done research that shows empty nesters with a companion animal are less likely to have depression and anxiety.

He said companion animals offer a sense of security that can help to mitigate the negative impact brought by living alone.

Jiang Qiaoyun, a retired nurse in Taizhou, Jiangsu province, got a pet dog last year.

“When I was little and lived in a village, we had dogs. But we used them mostly to act as guard dogs,” she said. “Having a pet dog is like a typical behavior of people living in cities. My son was born in the city. He naturally thinks of a dog as a pet.”

Yu said he expected that the pet dog market will develop quickly in the next 10 years.

“Besides economic reasons, the change of social status is another reason why many Chinese want to have a pet dog. In addition to a middle class eager to have fancy dogs, many immigrants moving from rural areas to cities, or from small cities to big ones, would also want a dog to show they are modern citizens.”

Source: ChinaDaily

Jose Mourinho wouldn’t criticise Wayne Rooney for move to China

Jose Mourinho will not stand in Wayne Rooney’s way if the Manchester United captain decides to move to China.

Rooney became United’s record scorer on Saturday when his 250th club goal earned a 1-1 draw at Stoke in the Premier League and saw him surpass Sir Bobby Charlton’s mark.

The 31-year-old came off the bench to help his side rescue a point, meaning half of his 16 league appearances this season have come as a substitute.

Several high-profile players have moved from Europe to play in the Chinese Super League, with Rooney being linked with a switch when his United career comes to an end.

United boss Mourinho feels Rooney remains an important player for the club, but believes his skipper has earned the right to decide where he wants to play in the future.

“I think he still has more to give us, but you reach a certain level in his career when it is up to him,” Mourinho said.

“Could anyone be critical with Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] last summer if he decided to go to China or the U.S.? Could anyone be critical with one guy with such an amazing career? No, and I think with Wayne it is the same. He owns his life, he owns his career. It’s him, his family and his decision.”

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Chinese New Year – Public Holiday in China and several other countries

Chinese New Year begins on 28 January 2017 and will be a public holiday in several countries in East Asia. To see when different countries have public holidays for Chines New Year, use our comprehensive list of Lunar New Year holidays by day.

Each year in the Chinese calendar is represented by one of twelve animals in the Chinese Zodiac. 2017 will be the “year of the Rooster”.

The Chinese New Year has a great history. In other traditions, by this time in the year, most resolutions have been forgotten or put back to the following year. However, all hope is not lost, as there’s a second chance to get it right with the celebration of Chinese New Year.

The Chinese New Year is celebrated by almost a sixth of the world’s population and is very similar to the Western one, swathed in traditions and rituals.

The origin of the Chinese New Year is itself ancient and obscured by the amount of time. It is popularly recognized as the Spring Festival and celebrations last 15 days.

Preparations tend to begin a month from the date of the Chinese New Year (similar to a Western Christmas), when people start buying presents, decoration materials, food and clothing. A huge clean-up gets underway days before the New Year, when Chinese houses are cleaned from top to bottom, to sweep away any traces of bad luck, and doors and windowpanes are given a new coat of paint, usually red.

The eve of the New Year is perhaps the most exciting part of the event, as anticipation creeps in. Here, traditions and rituals are very carefully observed in everything from food to clothing.

Rituals include cleaning the house, putting up new posters of “door gods” on front doors, fireworks before the family union dinner, which should be at least 10 course meal with a whole fish entrée symbolizing the abundance of the coming year.

It’s usual to wear something red as this colour is meant to ward off evil spirits – but black and white are out, as these are associated with mourning. After dinner, the family sit up for the night playing cards, board games or watching TV programmes dedicated to the occasion. At midnight, the sky is lit up by fireworks.

In China, many people will travel back from the cities to their home towns. This results in the world’s largest annual human migration.

On the day itself, an ancient custom called Hong Bao, meaning Red Packet, takes place. This involves married couples giving children and unmarried adults money in red envelopes. Then the family begins to say greetings from door to door, first to their relatives and then their neighbours. Like the Western saying “let bygones be bygones,” at Chinese New Year, grudges are very easily cast aside.

Traditional foods eaten during the Spring festival are fish (the Chinese word for ‘fish’ sounds like the word for ‘surplus,’ so the eating of fish is supposed to bring a surplus of money and good luck); Chinese dumplings (as their shape is said to be like that of silver ingots, which were used as money in ancient Chinese); spring rolls; rice cakes and rice balls.

The end of the New Year is marked by the Festival of Lanterns, which is a celebration with singing, dancing and lantern shows.

China

In China, the rules governing what days are taken for Chinese New Year as public holidays changed in late 2013. From 2014, the festival will be a holiday on the first three days of the first lunar month of each year. Since 2008, the three-day holiday had started on the last day of the lunar year.

Indonesia

In 2001, President Abdurrahman Wahid made Chinese New Year an optional holiday. He also lifted a ban on the display of Chinese characters and the import of Chinese publications. In 2002, President Megawati Soekarnoputri declared Chinese New Year as a national holiday starting from 2003

In Indonesia, Chinese New Year is known as ‘Imlek’ and has become a popular holiday celebrated by all Indonesians, not just those of Chinese descent.

Carlos Tevez welcomed by thousands of singing Chinese

The Chinese adventure of Carlos Tevez has officially begun. The Argentine striker (32) goes receive tons of money at Shanghai Shenhua and already got a taste of what awaits him.

At Shanghai Pudong International Airport were thousands of Chinese people waiting on Tevez who was loudly sung.

Carlos Tevez is a former player of Manchester United, Manchester City, Juventus, and Boca Juniors
At Shenhua, last season the number 4 of the Chinese league, he’s teammate of Demba Ba and Obafemi Martins.