Preventing the 88-meter-deep (290 feet) pit from flooding was among the chief challenges for engineers working on the swanky 336-room InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland, part of a $288 million development that also includes a theme park. The hotel, which is one of a growing number of bold architectural designs springing up in China, hugs one side of the pit wall, with a waterfall cascading down the opposite face. The subterranean 17-floor hotel is about an hour's drive from the centre of Shanghai, with room charges starting at 3,394 yuan ($490) a night. There is a floor of suites below the water level, but don't expect to gaze directly into the depths of Shenkeng Quarry -- the windows are instead buffered by large fish tanks. "Why do we say there is nothing in the world that compares to the quarry hotel project?" Chen Xiaoxiang, chief engineer with the real estate giant, Shimao Property, said to AFP. "It’s a project that's completely new, a project we have never encountered … [Read more...] about This place is the pits: China opens luxury hotel in quarry
China world hotel in beijing
U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis (R) is with Bui Anh Chung, Deputy Commander of Vietnam's Air and Air Defense Force at Bien Hoa Airport on Wednesday. Photo by Phuoc Tuan Mattis, accompanied by American military officials and the U.S. ambassador to Vietnam, Daniel Krienrink, arrived at the airport in the southern Dong Nai Province at 8:30 a.m. In what has been called a “rare” and “unusual” visit by international media including AP and Nikkei, Mattis spent around 10 minutes talking with Vietnamese military officials, led by Major General Bui Anh Chung, Deputy Commander of Vietnam’s Air and Air Defense Force. With reporters kept at a distance, the military delegations talked and surveyed the airport map in a tent, steps away from a “Danger” sign along the ditch that runs around the airport. The visit will hopefully earn Vietnam more support from the U.S. for dioxin clearance, officials said. A Vietnam's Defense Ministry statement cited Mattis … [Read more...] about US defense secretary visits dioxin hotspot in ‘unusual’ Vietnam trip
Dr Le Hong Hiep, Fellow at the ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute. Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Vuong Dinh Hue has recently instructed the State Bank of Vietnam, the Ministry of Finance and relevant government agencies to crack down on the use of Chinese electronic wallet services, such as WeChat Pay and AliPay, as well as illegal points of sale devices at travel hotspots frequented by Chinese tourists. The government is concerned that the use of such payment methods, through which the transactions, conducted between Chinese bank accounts of Chinese tourists and business owners, can circumvent Vietnam’s banking system and national regulations, leading to loss of tax revenues and other potential problems. This is one of the many challenges that Vietnamese authorities have to handle to reap the benefits of the greater inflow of Chinese tourists while minimizing any unwanted impacts that they may generate for the country in general and the economy in particular. In the first … [Read more...] about Spike in Chinese tourists presents new challenges for Vietnam
Donald Trump dangled the carrot of foreign investment in front of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un at their nuclear summit, but analysts say few will want to put money into one of the highest-risk business environments in the world. The U.S. president showed Kim a movie of bright lights, high-speed trains and soaring tower blocks - pitching a future that could be possible if Pyongyang gives up its weapons. Optimists say that with mineral wealth, cheap labour, and a helpful geographical location, the North has huge potential. But the history of overseas firms who have tried to set up operations in the isolated, impoverished country is a long and sorry one. Rules that can change on a whim, bills that are never paid, and the threat of expropriation hang over foreigners who step into the wildest of wild east investment destinations. For now, dozens of restrictions apply under the various sanctions regimes imposed on the North over its nuclear ambitions. Joint ventures are banned by the U.N. … [Read more...] about Invest in North Korea: money pit or golden opportunity?
U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday praised his relationship with Chinese President Xi Jinping as officials from the world’s two largest economies began trade talks in Beijing, while state media said China would stand up to U.S. bullying. A breakthrough deal to fundamentally change China’s economic policies is viewed as highly unlikely during the two days of talks, though a package of short-term Chinese measures could delay Washington’s decision to impose tariffs on about $50 billion worth of Chinese exports. The discussions, led by U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and Chinese Vice Premier Liu He, are expected to cover a wide range of U.S. complaints about China’s trade practices, from accusations of forced technology transfers to state subsidies for technology development. “Thrilled to be here. Thank you,” Mnuchin told Reuters at his hotel when asked if he expected progress. He made no other comments. As Mnuchin arrived, Trump tweeted: … [Read more...] about Trump praises China’s Xi as trade talks begin in Beijing