Oct 26, 2019 07:33 AM

CX Daily: China, Belgium, U.K. Work to Identify 39 Found Dead in Truck

Police and forensic officers investigate a truck in which 39 bodies were discovered, Oct. 23, 2019 in Thurrock, England. Photo: VCG
Police and forensic officers investigate a truck in which 39 bodies were discovered, Oct. 23, 2019 in Thurrock, England. Photo: VCG

Trafficking /

China working with Belgium, U.K. to confirm identities of 39 found dead in truck

Chinese officials in the U.K. and Belgium are working closely with their local counterparts to confirm whether the 39 dead discovered in a refrigeration container in southeast England are Chinese nationals, the Foreign Ministry said Friday.

The 39 bodies were discovered in the early hours of Wednesday local time, when paramedics were called to an industrial complex in the town of Grays. The container had arrived on a ferry from Belgium at the nearby port of Purfleet the same night and transported to the location by a truck, whose 25-year-old Northern Irish driver has been arrested on suspicion of murder. Two others have since been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and conspiracy to traffick.

On Thursday, Essex police said that the deceased were “believed to be Chinese nationals.” The Chinese Embassy in the U.K. said in a statement, however, that the identities of the deceased “still cannot be confirmed,” but that the minister-counselor in charge of consular affairs had gone to Essex and met with local police.



A worker monitors corn as it is loaded into an outdoor storage bunker in Sheffield, Illinois, U.S., Oct. 2, 2018. Photo: Bloomberg

Trade war /

U.S. farm sales to China may hit pre-trade war level by election

The bonanza of $40 billion to $50 billion in annual agricultural sales to China that Trump promoted when he announced a tentative partial trade deal on Oct. 11 will almost certainly have to wait until after the presidential vote, if it ever comes. And China’s added purchases also come with strings attached.

China aims to buy at least $20 billion of agricultural products in a year if it signs a partial trade deal with the U.S., and would consider boosting purchases further in future rounds of talks, sources said. That would take China’s imports of U.S. farm goods back to around 2017 levels, before Trump began a tit-for-tat tariff feud with Beijing. In the second year of a potential final deal, purchases could rise to $40 billion to $50 billion. But that would depend on Trump removing remaining punitive tariffs, the sources said.

Personnel /

China Development Bank gets new chief

Ouyang Weimin, a veteran central bank official, was named the president of state policy lender China Development Bank, succeeding the retiring 61-year-old Zheng Zhijie.

The CDB announced Thursday the appointment of Ouyang, a vice governor of Guangdong province in southern China. Ouyang worked 20 years at the PBOC before he was transferred to local government positions in Guangdong in 2011.

Stocks /

Postal Bank wins nod for what could be year’s biggest China IPO

Postal Savings Bank of China Ltd., one of the nation’s largest state-owned lenders, won regulatory approval for an IPO that could raise more than $3.3 billion in the mainland.

The China Securities Regulatory Commission approved the sale Thursday, according to a statement. Beijing-based Postal Bank, which is already listed in Hong Kong, plans to sell as many as 5.17 billion shares on the Shanghai stock exchange, according to its listing prospectus.

Quick hits /

Financial giant Ping An appoints first new president in eight years

China bond investor who predicted sell-off now sees recovery

Conglomerate’s missed bond payment sparks renewed debt worries

Charts of the day: Leveraged funds flood into China stocks

Most Chinese studying in U.S. get full five-year student visas, embassy says

The ripple effect of U.S.-China trade war on soybeans supply chain



Photo: Bloomberg

Apps /

Has TikTok’s robust growth plateaued?

User downloads of the viral short video app TikTok run by Chinese upstart ByteDance Inc. fell in the third quarter for the first time since its inception two years ago, according to data from Sensor Tower. The 177 million first-time users the app generated in the quarter through September represented a 4% decline from a year earlier.

This comes amid calls for an investigation into the app by U.S. senators, who say it may be a national security threat to the country. "TikTok is a potential counterintelligence threat we cannot ignore,” Republican Senator Tom Cotton and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said in a letter Thursday to Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire.

E-commerce /

Pinduoduo is now worth more than JD.Com

It’s known as the brand that sells sometimes-defective products, in bulk, to less well-off Chinese consumers. But Pinduoduo’s unfashionable reputation hasn’t stopped it from becoming more valuable than its slicker-looking competitor

On Thursday, Nasdaq-listed Pinduoduo's share price rosemore than 12%, reaching a record high of $39.96. That boosted its market cap to $46 billion, surpassing’s $45 billion.’s share price closed at $30.72 on Thursday. Pinduoduo is now the fourth-largest overseas-listed Chinese internet company, behind Alibaba, Tencent, and lifestyle platform Meituan Dianping.

Sports /

China to host first edition of expanded FIFA Club World Cup in 2021

FIFA, world soccer’s governing body, on Thursday awarded China the right to host the first edition of an expanded Club World Cup in 2021, in a move that experts say could pave the way for the country to host world soccer’s showpiece international tournament in the coming years.

The tournament, which currently features seven club teams drawn from six continental confederations in a straight knockout format, will be revamped to include 24 teams in a yet-to-be-decided participation model. The decision has been construed in sports circles as a trial run for a potential China-hosted FIFA World Cup — the soccer world’s showpiece international event — sometime in the 2030s.

Transportation /

IPO nears for one of state rail operator’s few profitable lines

China Railway Group Ltd. submitted an IPO for its lucrative Beijing-Shanghai high-speed railway unit, as the debt-ridden national rail operator looks to raise money to fund one of its few profitable lines.

Beijing-Shanghai High-Speed Railway Co. Ltd., of which CR holds a controlling stake, submitted its plan to China’s securities regulator Oct. 22, according to information on the commission’s website. Details of the plan have not been disclosed. China Railway has been preparing for what could become one of the year’s biggest listings since at least early 2019.

Quick hits /

‘New first-tier cities’ challenge traditional megacities for tech talent

Online payment services, games and livestreamers can be criminally liable for data breaches: Supreme Court

Retired head of state power giant Huadian under probe

Bankrupt Chinese fuel trader claims $5.66 billion from Mercuria

Gallery: The Shenzhen factories that make the world’s e-cigs

Tokopedia president says ‘obsession’ with Indonesia helped beat e-commerce rivals

China Unicom invests in fund for AI, emerging tech

China’s cloud services market grew 27.5% in first half, IDC reports

E-commerce power couple untying the knot?

Huawei sets sights on self-driving car radar

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