More wet markets, toilets planned
The city will build hundreds of new wet markets and public toilets by 2020 to ensure a market or bathroom is located within a five minute walk of any downtown location, the Shanghai Urban Planning Administrative Bureau announced yesterday.
Many of the new facilities will be constructed in Pudong and between the Inner and Outer Ring Roads, areas that lack enough markets and public toilets at present.--(8/31)
More international brands on Huaihai Road
A total of 1,159 international brands are now available at shopping malls and specialty stores along Huaihai Road, accounting for 63 percent of all the brands there, up 18.2 percentage points from 2003.
The Economic and Trade Commission of Luwan District established a special database to offer twice-yearly brand surveys to managers of shopping malls and specialty stores on Huaihai Road free of charge, in a bid to help them restructure their brands.
Several years ago, up to 20 percent of brands along Huaihai Road over-lapped and, after the database was set up, the rate has dropped to 14.4 percent to date.
Sixteen shopping malls and 106 specialty stores are accelerating their brand updates, with the Parkson Department Store updating 20 percent of its brands every year.
The eastern section of Huaihai Road, comprising Shanghai Times Square, Shanghai Plaza, Xintiandi, Qiyetiandi and the Taiping Lake area, is expected to become the city's third cluster for luxury international brands, together with Nanjing Road West and the Bund area.--(8/30)
Relocations due to railway station face-lift starts
Thirty-four families in Zhabei District moved their homes yesterday to make way for the northern square reconstruction project at Shanghai Railway Station.
They are the first of a total of 1,150 families and 51 corporations to be relocated for the project, part of Zhabei's master-plan for the greater railway station area.
As planned, the project, one of the city's five key renovation projects for this year, will relocate a total of 8,300-odd families and 300 corporations from six parcels of land covering a total area of 25.9 hectares.
Shanghai has introduced a new relocation methodology in this project to help house those on low-incomes, according to Zhabei District Director Yin Hong.
Other than buying a new home with the government-provided relocation compensation, poor families can apply for low-rent homes from the housing authority. They can draw 70 percent of their compensation fund to pay rentals and deposits on a 15-year lease. When the lease ends, the families, if they want to continue their stay, may use the deposits to pay for renewed rental.
Director Yin said the government is working out ways to improve local people's living conditions as well as urban infrastructure with the mass relocations in mind.
The government will create a multi-level transport hub in the railway station area, featuring bus, metro, train, long-haul transport and elevated expressway. --(8/29)
New morphine research
Shanghai scientists announced what they called a breakthrough, identifying the mechanism of morphine tolerance and opening the way to develop a new generation of pain killers that don't cause tolerance.
Their finding was published in the Thursday version of Cell Journal - an authoritative US biological monthly magazine.
They called it one of the most important scientific achievements concerning morphine, which is used by many cancer patients. --(8/28)
Nanjing Road spiffing it up
Name-brand shops on Shanghai's Nanjing Road are undergoing renovations and discount outlets are being closed down as Jing'an District planners work to increase the street's attraction for luxury-brand shoppers. --(8/27)
Cooperative changes into bank in reform
Shanghai Rural Credit Cooperatives Union was transformed into a commercial bank yesterday as part of a nationwide reform of rural credit cooperatives. The transformation also paves the way for Australia & New Zealand Banking Group Ltd to take a stake in the new bank.
The cooperative, which provided loans to Shanghai's farmers and businesses in rural areas, was re-launched as Shanghai Country Commercial Bank with a registered capital of 3 billion yuan (US$370 million).
The bank, with 331 outlets across the city, is positioned to be a retail lender serving rural businesses, especially medium and small enterprises, agricultural firms as well as individuals.
The cooperative was founded in 2001 to act as the headquarters of the 234 rural credit unions in the city.
The outstanding value of deposits kept in the cooperative stood at 93.8 billion yuan by the end of June while the value of loans was 52.6 billion yuan as of June 30. Assets totalled 115.5 billion yuan.
Australia & New Zealand Banking Group plans to buy 19.9 percent of the Shanghai-based lender, the maximum allowed for an overseas investor to buy into a Chinese bank. But ANZ did not reveal the timetable for the stake sale.
ANZ, employing 28,755 people in Australia and globally, agreed in October last year to offer technical assistance to the Shanghai cooperative.
China has urged its sprawling rural cooperatives to restructure into banks to raise efficiency and to get them in shape to meet foreign competition.
The cooperatives account for 10 percent of the country's deposits and their nonperforming loans accounted for 17.5 percent of their total loans, compared with an average 10 percent in the banking industry.--(8/26)
3M hub aims to tap creative vim
3M Co, a US-based maker of diversified products, will invest US$40 million to set up a research and development center in Shanghai to tap the creative spirit of Chinese researchers.
The five-story, 16,000 square-meter center, located in Caohejing High-Tech Development Zone in southwestern Shanghai, is due to start operation in May 2006 as the Minnesota-based firm's fifth global R&D facility. The others are in the United States, Japan, Germany and France.
The firm now has 180 technical people in China and the figure is expected to grow to 270 in 2007.
The inventor of Post-it notes has also built three technology service centers in Beijing, Guangzhou and Suzhou and an innovation center in Shanghai.
The firm will double its investment in China soon to boost its expansion in the world's fastest-growing economy.
3M entered China in 1984 and has since then established 11 companies and 19 offices nationwide employing 2,800 employees.
3M's revenue in China is expected to top US$1.7 billion this year as the third biggest market for the firm after the United States and Japan.
3M, one of 30 companies in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, generated a revenue of US$20 billion in 2004 globally and its earnings last year hit US$2.99 billion.--(8/25)
Historic building facelift
Renovation work is conducted at 69 Shanyin Road in Hongkou District. The local government plans to renovate 30 historical buildings in eight districts, hoping to give those decades-old houses a face-lift.--(8/24)
Police assistants help railway patrol
Two police assistants and officers patrol at Shanghai Railway Station. Forty police assistants, aged 35-40, hired by the local railway authority began work yesterday.--(8/23)
Baosteel becomes supplier for world's No. 1 cable-stayed bridge
Shanghai Baosteel Ltd recently signed a contract with the construction headquarters of the Sutong Bridge, becoming the first and only domestic supplier of steel to be used for the cables on a cable-stayed bridge.
The Sutong Bridge will connect Nantong and Suzhou, two cities of east Jiangsu Province. It's also an important section of the national trunk route running between Jiayin in Heilongjiang Province and Nanping in Fujian Province.
The bridge is 32.4 kilometers in length and sees a total investment of 6,450 million yuan (US$ 797million). It's design represents three world records in terms of the height of the main tower, at 306 meters; the length of the main cable, at 580 meters; and the span of the main beam, at 1,088 meters.
Before winning the contract, Baosteel established a special project team on Sutong Bridge, the main research subject being the specifics for the steel demanded by the bridge.
The steel wire produced by the 'B87 Mn QL' machine subsequently developed by the project team has been judged to be not just suitable but of unprecedented quality by domestic experts in bridges, smelting and materials. --(8/22)
Xuhui to offer free bicycle parking
Cyclists will soon receive free parking at the Xujiahui Commercial Circle as the Xuhui District government plans to create dozens of parking spots in the area.
Xuhui plans to invest 1 million yuan (US$123,300) each year on hiring administration personnel and to pay for maintenance.
Parking at the Xujiahui Commercial Circle will be free for bikes, motorcycles and mopeds.--(8/21)
Police officials take time to meet people
High-ranking police officials started a three-week campaign yesterday to speak with residents about their concerns at the Shanghai Police Museum.
Representatives from police departments of nine districts were present.--(8/19)
Premarital health check is now free
Starting this month premarital health consultation and check will be provided free of charge to all local new couples, the city government said yesterday.
It also announced that the city's minimum sustenance allowance for each urban or town citizen will be raised from the monthly 290 yuan (US$36) to 300 yuan.
New couples, when they go to marriage registration centers, will at first be taken to a separate marriage and family health consultation room.
Qualified premarital health doctors will then inform the couples of the importance of the check, related marriage laws and family planning regulations, and advise them to accept the check.
The couples can choose to receive the check at the center or at qualified medical institutions.--(8/18)
Cooler weather forecast
A cold air mass is heading the city and will bring cooler weather starting tomorrow, the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau forecast yesterday. Temperatures should drop below 32 degrees Celsius for tomorrow and Friday, but today's temperatures will still range between 29 and 35 degrees. Showers are expected this afternoon or in the evening, which will last to Friday. --(8/17)
Summer gas supply ample
Though gasoline has been in short supply in southern China, Shanghai's motorists have been getting plenty of fuel - thanks to a boost in inventory.
The shanghai branch of China Petroleum and Chemicals Corp, better known as Sinopec, raised daily supply by 20 percent to quench the city's demand for fuel during the hot weather.--(8/16)
Lunch boxes check
The Shanghai Food and Drug Administration announced the result of a recent check on lunch boxes in local markets. Among the 192 samples checked from local schools and takeaway food companies, 6.7 percent of lunch boxes served in schools and 16.7 percent of the food sold to office buildings failed to meet the requirement on food quality and hygiene. --(8/15)
Transport fees push Thai trip prices up
Travelers to Thailand will pay at least 500 yuan (US$62) more from Monday due to an increase in transport and admission costs, travel agencies said.
The added expense is in response to the Thai government moving to regulate its tourism market. It forbids tour guides, against their wishes, from taking travelers to certain shops and markets.--(8/14)
Michael Bolton to make local debut
Two-time Grammy winner Michael Bolton will make his debut on the Chinese mainland in December, making him the most recent in a string of "outdated superstars" to visit the city, according to one local critic.
Bolton will perform shows in Shanghai and Beijing. The Shanghai concert will be staged at the Shanghai Grand Stage on December 12.
Ticket prices will range between 180 yuan (US$22) and 1,080 yuan.
The 52-year-old singer, songwriter had a series of hit in the 1980s and 1990s. He has sold more than 52 million albums and singles worldwide, and won the Grammy for Best Male Vocalist in 1990 and 1992.--(8/12)
Central bank opens city HQ
China's central bank unveiled a "Shanghai headquarters" yesterday whose tasks will include overseeing open-market operations, analyzing the impact of market tools on the monetary policies as well as maintaining financial stability.
As operations are moved to the new Shanghai office, the Beijing headquarters will focus on drafting policies and making decisions, said Xiang Junbo, who will head the new headquarters, in his speech at the opening.
The Shanghai office will implement open-market operations, conduct market research and collect financial data. It will coordinate other financial agencies like the foreign exchange center in the city.
The People's Bank of China didn't specify exactly which divisions have been moved to Shanghai.--(8/11)
City's economy grows 10.4%
The city's economy grew by 10.4 percent during the first seven months of this year compared with the same period last year, but it still faces some major problems, Mayor Han Zheng announced during a report to lawmakers yesterday.
He said the city has listed deep-water port construction, comprehensive reforms in Pudong, preparation for the World Expo 2010, environmental protection and public health construction as its major goals for the second half of this year. --(8/10)
No.9 People's Hospital rebuilt human jaw
Shanghai No. 9 People's Hospital said yesterday that it has rebuilt a patient's jaw, which was cut for cancer treatment. It is the first time a Chinese mainland hospital has successfully performed the procedure. --(8/9)
Thousands brave storms to visit book exhibition
More than 18,000 people braved a massive storm on Saturday to take in the opening day of the Shanghai Book Fair.
Book sales during opening day hit 948,400 yuan (US$117,033), according to organizers.
When the rain stopped yesterday, more book lovers flocked to the event at the Shanghai Exhibition Center on Nanjing Road W.
With the exception of imported books, all publications are being sold for 20 percent below retail price.
The 2005 Shanghai Book Fair has attracted 40 local publishing houses and 120 publishers from other parts of the country for the nine-day event. --(8/8)
Shanghai sends out black warning signal against Typhoon Matsa
The municipal central meteorological observatory of Shanghai sends out a black warning signal Saturday, warning the citizens of the imminent typhoon Matsa.
Matsa, number nine typhoon this year, landed at Ganjiang Township in Yuhuan County, east China's Zhejiang Province at 3:40 a.m. Saturday.
The typhoon center has been moving northwestward at a speed of 12 km per hour and was only 230 kilometers away from Shanghai as of 4:00 p.m.
Affected by Matsa, the major areas in Shanghai suffers strong rainstorms. The precipitation in Luojing reaches 120 mm.
Meanwhile, the typhoon also brings winds measuring eight or nine on Beaufort scale to the urban areas of the east China financial center.
Some citizens say that this was the strongest wind they had even seen during the past seven or eight years.
The observatory said the impacts of Matsa will not grow weakened until Sunday morning.
The municipal government has relocated 69,000 citizens living in the coastal areas and mobilized 100,000 people in disaster control and relief works. --(8/7)
Local firm joins Galileo project
A government-backed company has been set up to assist with research on the Galileo project, a European satellite navigation system similar to Global Positioning System, the Shanghai Science and Technology Commission announced yesterday.
The commission said the Galileo system will help drivers navigate the city during the World Expo 2010, greatly improving traffic.
As part of the national research force for Galileo, Shanghai Galileo Industry will focus its research on chips and integrated circuits for the satellite navigation system.--(8/5)
Typhoon Matsa arrived in city today
Though it's still well out to sea, Typhoon Matsa is expected to push clouds and showers into Shanghai today. The high is expected to fall to 34 to 35 degrees Celsius after a 36.2-degree reading yesterday. The typhoon, which was upgraded yesterday from a tropical storm, should pass north of Taiwan and enter the East China Sea today, approaching the coast of Zhejiang Province. --(8/4)
AmCham donation for special Olympics
The American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai donated US$110,993 to the 2007 (Shanghai) Special Olympics World Summer Games Executive Committee yesterday. The donation came from the proceeds of the 2005 AmCham Charity Ball, the chamber's third annual gala fundraiser. --(8/4)
City ensures food security
Thanks to enhanced supervision of food production and sales, Shanghai currently has a better-regulated and safer food market.
Production at the newly-planned 1.6 million mu (107,000 hectares) of grain and 1,000 hectares of vegetables will be standardized. Inspections will be stepped-up in relation to pesticide residues on vegetables and also on pork.
Local departments have issued rules to ban unlicensed food producers or processors and those providing the locations and facilities in which they work.
Special checks will also be conducted on public food outlets, such as school canteens for migrant children and canteens on construction sites. --(8/3)
Gas subsidies for taxi drivers
The city will offer taxi drivers subsidies starting this month to help them deal with rising gas prices, the local government announced yesterday. Officials didn't disclose how much the subsidies will be, but said most of the money will be paid by the city government with a small part assumed by taxi companies. China raised gas and diesel retail prices by more than 6 percent on July 23, increasing burdens on public transport companies and taxi drivers.--(8/2)
Exhibition displays photo on war
"Shanghai and The War Against Japanese Invasion" at the New Archive Museum of the Shanghai Archive bureau over the weekend. The exhibition will run for free through September 25.--(8/1)