Tag Archives: China

North Korea Looking for an Ear

Copy of dprkThe reclusive Communist state wants to talk – but only to the United States. After a year of silence, it’s willing to revisit the issue of nuclear disarmament, but it wants one-on-one time instead of the usual six-party format.

A DPRK official visited the United States last week, a rarity, in what has been called a “’charm’ offensive” by Reuters. The country is desperate for money and aid.

Reuters reports that a DPRK Foreign Ministry spokesman said to the Korea Central News Agency, “The conclusion we have reached is that the direct parties, which are the North and the United States, must first sit down and find a rational solution.”

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North Korea Pulled the Digital Trigger

dprk propagandaWhile we’ve been worried about missile launches and “satellite” attempts, North Korea’s real action has been closer to Earth. The DPRK regime is accused of initiating high-profile cyber-attacks, causing internet outages in the United States and South Korea. The IP address, better than a fingerprint in this case, points back to North Korea’s Ministry of Post and Telecommunications, according to the chief of South Korea’s top spy agency. China leases the IP address to the DPRK military, according to JoongAng Ilbo and Yonhap news agency, both media outlets in South Korea.

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GreenHunter Divests Chinese Wind, Picked up by Local VCs

wind turbine green

Caveman 92223, via Flickr

Clearly, the Chinese venture capital market is hot right now. In addition to sinking some hefty scratch into local ventures — along with the Chinese and provincial governments — the VC community is on the prowl for more. When U.S. renewable energy producer GreenHunter Energy was ready to sell off its minority stake in Guangdong MingYang Wind Power Technology, it found a buyer in Chinese growth venture firm DT Capital Partners, which agreed to play for $9.1 million.

GreenHunter Energy picked up its stake in the Chinese manufacturer of industrial-scale wind turbines back in late 2007. It seems pretty safe to infer that the company made the move back then because the U.S. equivalent wasn’t far enough along. Now, says CEO Gary Evans, the U.S. wind turbine biz is far enough along, making it preferable to owning a piece of a Chinese company.

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China launches $1.32 billion VC fund

chinese flagThe Chinese government is committing $1.32 billion to launch venture capital funds jointly with several of its provinces, according to a Reuters report. Private investors will also be involved in the effort, the purpose of which is to bolster the growth of the high-tech sector across China. Specific sectors that will benefit include information technology, energy, pharma and environmental.

China isn’t spending all its money in one place. Rather, it’s spreading the cash across 20 venture capital funds. One billion yuan (slightly more than 10% of the capital) will come from the Chinese government, with 1.2 billion yuan coming from the local governments. The rest is being kicked in by the private sector.

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The future of private equity

After having taken a break from recreational financial writing, I’m finally back in action on Digital Journal. Using the latest data from Private Equity Intelligence, Ltd, I have written about private equity inflow trends and the differences in how North Americans and Europeans invest in China.

Read “Private Equity Tides Are Changing” >>

Read “Americans and Europeans See China Differently” >>

“Step Up Time” Is Working

Civil liberties champion and Manhattan Neighborhood Network talking head Jeremy Taylor is making a difference. Founder of non-profit Step Up, Taylor has lobbied endlessly for U.S. involvement in Darfur. On his MNN television show, Taylor has called for the International Criminal Court to indict Sudanese dictator Omar Hassan al-Bashir. Bashir also holds the distinction of being one of Taylor’s “Pricks of Planet Earth.

Well, Jeremy’s efforts have paid off. Bashir has been indicted. I’ve been listening to Jeremy pull for this for a year. The clip below first aired a year ago on MNN.

Okay, so maybe you don’t believe that Jeremy was the driving force behind the International Criminal Court’s decision. I challenge you to prove otherwise!

Because you just can’t get enough Jeremy Taylor

I could be posting more pictures and stories from my trip to Montreal, but I’m tired and getting ready to go to bed. So, I leave you with the next best thing: Jeremy Taylor. He has a show on Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN), and his mission has been to gather support for a boycott of the Beijing Olympics. It’s been uphill, as one would expect.

My favorite clip of him is below. While I was in Las Vegas with Jeremy, Bam Bam and Dirty Dave, I launched into Jeremy’s “Call your Senators” speech. We had a good laugh, and then he said, “Oh, thanks for reminding me.” He pressed a number on his phone (speed dial, as he insists of his viewers) and left a message for President Bush.

Call your congressmen!