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1.As the most important element to ensure food security, seeds are the “chips” of agriculture. Communist China’s technological advances of the seed industry are far behind those of developed countries. It is highly dependent on imported seeds especially the seeds of some vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, eggplants, carrots, peppers, and broccoli. Corn and potato seeds also rely on imports to a considerable extent. Recently, Russia announced that starting from January next year, it will substantially increase the export tariff rate of sunflower seeds and rapeseed from the current 6.5% to 30%.

2.On the evening of December 20, SMIC issued a statement that, after the company’s preliminary assessment, being added to the US export control blacklist will negatively affect the company’s R&D and production capacity construction of advanced technologies of 10 nanometers and below. But it states that the sanction has no significant adverse impact on its short-term operations and financial performance since it is not currently mass-producing chips using technologies below 10 nanometers and below.

3.Thousands of temporary workers gathered outside the Taiwanese-invested Pegatron facility in Shanghai to protest over a pay dispute with management on Dec. 19. The protest was caused by Pegatron’s decision to transfer thousands of workers from its Shanghai factory to another facility at Kunshan, Jiangsu. Temporary workers who refused the transfer would be fired and wouldn’t be eligible for their share of finders’ fee commission usually shared between recruitment agencies and workers. The CCP authorities dispatched a large number of police to block the entrance to the facility, sparking clashes. Workers were quickly suppressed and beaten to the ground.

4.Canadian government rejected Communist China’s Shandong Gold Mining Co.’s plan to acquire a gold miner operating in the Canadian Arctic. This rejection decision was made under the Investment Canada Act despite the earlier agreement in May that Shandong, a state-backed metal producer, agreed to buy the Canadian miner for about $150 million.

5.In a Tuesday night tweet, President Trump called the $900 billion Covid relief bill passed by Congress an unsuitable “disgrace” and urged lawmakers to make a number of changes to the bill, including increasing the direct payment to individuals from $600 to $2,000, or $4,000 for a couple.

【 G-Translators-Financial Team – Kate 】