Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Democracy would see poor people dominate vote, CY Leung saysas he initiates his own seppuku

Wow... I thought Malaysia had a stranglehold on politicians making the silliest comments. Now we have some competition. Hong Kong's Beijing-backed leader Leung Chun Ying told media that if the government met pro-democracy protesters' demands it would result in the city's poorer people dominating elections.Hence, you cannot run a HK democracy and that free elections were impossible.



Conclusion and side-admissions:
a) the poor people know nothing in HK/China
b) the other 50% deserve less than a vote per person as citizens
c) the poor do not know what's best for the country
d) HK only serves the rich and powerful, otherwise how did we get here
e) you, the other 50% are basically screwed and I am telling you in your face
f) poor people, you are Fucked and Fuck You

This is almost like the political crisis in Thailand, in that the poorer rural folks side with the ousted Thaksin and his cronies, while the city folks think that Thaksin is the devil incarnate and that the rural folks are stopping genuine demands for liberation and freedom from cronyism and excessive corruption.

Anyway, back to CY Leung:

"If it's entirely a numbers game and numeric representation, then obviously you'd be talking to the half of the people in Hong Kong who earn less than US$1,800 (S$2,250) a month," Mr Leung said in comments published by the WSJ and INYT.

Mr Leung's latest comments are likely to further fuel the anger of protesters who see him as hapless, out of touch and pandering to the whims of a small number of tycoons who dominate the financial hub.

("Gee... I am royally fucked by what I said" ... "must go to Chinese medicinal shop and ask for cure for foot-in-my-fucking-mouth disease")

His quotes also echo that of Mr Wang Zhenmin, a well-connected scholar and regular advisor to Beijing. Mr Wang said recently that greater democratic freedom in the semi-autonomous city must be balanced against the city's powerful business elite who would have to share their "slice of the pie" with voters.

"The business community is in reality a very small group of elites in Hong Kong who control the destiny of the economy in Hong Kong. If we ignore their interests, Hong Kong capitalism will stop (working)," he said in August.

If it’s entirely a numbers game – numeric representation – then obviously you’d be talking to half the people in Hong Kong [that] earn less than US$1,800 a month,” he said in reference to the median per capita wage. “You would end up with that kind of politics and policies.”

Equity Strategy


 A decent piece of research overview from KAF.

Following lacklustre trading for most of the year, the FBM KLCI has broken down in the past month. The sell-off was sparked by concerns over weaker global growth and collapsing oil prices. Although the oil price decline is a concern, we think the risk on the current account, in particular, is manageable. We expect GDP to be buoyed by resilient domestic demand, which should get a boost from the large scale infrastructure projects expected to begin next year. We view the correction as an excellent buying opportunity and introduce an end-2015 index target of 2,070, offering 17% potential upside.
 


Why bother?
Issues To Consider 
 ·         Another global sell-off - Although global growth expectations may have been too high a few months ago, we do not think the situation is as bad as during the European sovereign debt crisis in 2011. In fact, it is probably more comparable to the QE tapering jitters seen in July/August 2013. The FBM KLCI fell by as much as 16% during the 2011 sell-off while the correction last summer was under 7%. More importantly, the index recouped its losses in four months following the 2011 sell-off and in about a month last year, trending even higher over time

·         A big picture perspective - We believe the US is on a strong footing while China should deliver healthy growth albeit slower than in the past few years. The main external concern is Europe. Locally, private consumption has slowed along with fiscal consolidation, but we believe GDP growth of 5.8% this year and 5.4% next year is achievable. The 2015 Budget, while providing good follow through of last year’s reforms, also shows greater flexibility on the part of the Government now that desired results from reforms are coming through. Along with public-private initiatives, infrastructure projects worth as much as RM75bn should take off in 2015. We believe that investment activity should pick up further next year while the budgetary measures coupled with the significant infrastructure multiplier should shore up sentiment. 

·         Two key risks to key an eye on - We discuss the exuberance in property prices over the past 2-3 years and the present collapse in commodity prices, mainly Brent crude. Interestingly, we find that the country’s large surplus from energy is mainly from LNG exports, as Malaysia became a net importer of petroleum early last year. Property prices have slowed in the past three quarters but there needs to be further easing in order to prevent an unwanted accident. 

·         Good value emerges despite index target being pushed back - Despite earnings disappointments, we believe expectations built into share prices are quite modest. The market’s 1-year forward PER has fallen from 16.6x last December to 14.4x currently while ex-defensives, it is trading at only 12.9x 2015F. Following the latest sell-off amidst rising risk premiums, we are lowering our YE index target to 1,905 from 2,000. Under the assumption that Malaysian risk premia should still ease over time, we introduce an end-2015 index target of 2,070, offering 17% potential upside. 

·         Compelling entry points - Besides compelling opportunities in Banks, Oil & Gas and Technology, we highlight the resilience and growth upside of sectors linked to domestic themes such as Construction and Property. We also cover several companies trading at attractive valuations and offering strong cash generation and healthy yields that are largely insulated from external issues.

Actionable Ideas
·         We maintain a bullish stance on Banks along with Oil & Gas, Construction, Technology and Property.
·          Big-cap stocks we like are: TNB, CIMB, HLFG/HLBK, BAB, RHBC, MISC, and IJM.
·         Key mid-caps are: MSGB, UNI, PETR, MPR, WCT and SWB.
·         Five key stocks to sell are Public Bank, PPB, Petronas Gas, Top Glove and Astro.

Key Catalysts
·         Implementation of key budgetary proposals, we believe, should act as a re-rating catalyst for the market especially if there is good follow through in rolling out the slew of large projects. Also, better earnings delivery, good investment growth, some recovery in commodity prices, and resilient consumption.

Key Risks
·         The main risks are poor earnings delivery, sustained weakness in CPO/Brent prices and sharp slowdown in domestic demand. A key component of earnings delivery is the timely implementation of ETP projects and fiscal policy, in general. Sharp US dollar appreciation is also a potential risk.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Paper Sculptor

AWHPortraitSmlAnna-Wili's sculptures are stitched together from archival cotton rag. Her works explore the organic qualities and resistance of paper, generating a tension between the complex realism of form and the limitations and economy of the materials used. They represent animal life in an immediate way that conveys the energy, movement and physical character of different creatures. Her aim is to engineer a moment of contact with nature in a way that emphasises both the startling differences and similarities of human and animal forms and consciousness.


Born in Sydney 1980, the daughter of a Puppeteer, Anna-Wili studied Fine Art at the National Art School, Sydney. In 2008, after working as a Scenic Artist for Opera Australia, she began making sculptures independently by commission. Her works are held in private collections around the world and have featured in numerous publications.


PT 20140307 AWH0046edited

ROOS 0027

Jaguar 100

PT 20131030 AWH RoosandOwls 0044

HermesRavens 015

Wolf print4homeedited

Sparrow 2013

White-Bellied-Sea-Eagle

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

S&M Show Podcast

CORRECTION, CRASH & REALIGNMENT IN MARKETS


Discussed the present market conditions and the changing investing factors, plus a look at the dynamics behind oil prices.

http://www.bfm.my/2014-10-15-podcast-snm-show.html


Song Pick:  Dan Fogelberg died at the young age of 56 following a late discovery of late stage prostate cancer. In his most loved song, Same Old Lang Syne, he wrote about bumping into his ex gf ... in the music video has the details of his old flame, Jill Anderson, a very poignant and touching story. Strangely, the great sax player, Michael Brecker who played a stunning sax solo at the end of the song, also passed away not too soon after Dan, he battled with leukemia.


The true story here: http://www.pjstar.com/x1101623574/Luciano-Its-a-memory-that-I-cherish


Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Why Oil Price Is Sagging

The respected site oilprice.com did a summary of why oil prices are sagging, but MISSED out one big factor. 

The strengthening USD over the past few weeks. Three or four months back, the turmoil in Iraq was causing some disruption anticipation to oil supply, which have been eased following the "drones strategy with partners". 

The USD has rallied over the past few weeks in anticipation of a uptrend in interest rates there, coupled with better recovery in the US compared to other developed counterparts. However, to me the strength in USD is not that permanent but rather a rebalancing and will not rise by much from hereon.

-----------------------------------------------

By Chris Pedersen for Oilprice.com

1. The U.S. Oil Boom
America’s oil boom is well documented. Shale oil production has grown by roughly 4 million barrels per day (mbpd) since 2008. Imports from OPEC have been cut in half and for the first time in 30 years, the U.S. has stopped importing crude from Nigeria.  

2. Libya is Back
Because of internal strife, analysts have until recently assumed that Libya’s output would hover around 150,000-250,000 thousand barrels per day. It turns out that Libya has sorted out their disruptions much quicker than anticipated, producing 810,000 barrels per day in September. Libyan officials told the Wall Street Journal last week that they expect to produce a million barrels per day by the end of the month and 1.2 million barrels a day by early next year.

3. OPEC Infighting 
There have been numerous reports about the discord between OPEC members, leading many to believe that OPEC will not be able to reign in production like it has done so in the past. The Saudis and Kuwaitis have reportedly been in an oil price war, repeatedly lowering their prices in order to maintain their market share in Asia. John Kingston, the news director at Platts, believes that the Saudis will not be willing to give up market share like they have done during previous price drops.

4. Negative European Economic Outlook
European Central Bank president Mario Draghi has left investors concerned about the continent’s slow growth. Germany’s exports were down 5.8 percent in August, stoking the fears of anxious investors that the EU’s largest economy had double dipped into recession last quarter. Across the Eurozone, the IMF again lowered its growth forecast to 0.8 percent in 2014 and 1.3 percent in 2015.

5. Tepid Asian Demand 
Beyond slow economic growth and currency depreciation, a number of Asian countries have begun cutting energy subsidies, resulting in higher fuel costs despite a drop in global oil prices. In 2012, Asia’s top spenders on energy subsidies, as a percentage of GDP included: Indonesia 3 percent; Thailand 2.6 percent; Vietnam 2.5 percent, Malaysia 2.3 percent, and India 2.3 percent. India is a primary example. Between 2008-2012, India’s diesel demand grew between 6 percent and 11 percent annually. In January 2013, the country started cutting the subsidies of diesel. Since then, diesel consumption has plateaued.

Could Malaysia Be The Next "Houston" (oil & gas hub)

Interesting article from oilprice.com:

Helped along by a stable, transparent, pro-business government, Malaysia has been quietly building itself into an oil and gas hub, and the world’s oil and gas companies -- who increasingly see this country as a natural base for their broader Asian operations -- have noticed.

With Singapore now the world’s most expensive city, Jakarta in constant gridlock and Bangkok the center of recurring coup activity, Kuala Lumpur is fast becoming the preferred central location for businesses looking to take advantage of the expected growth in South East Asia.

The South East Asian market holds great importance for oil and gas firms due to its location in the center of the Asian-Pacific; some estimates are that it will account for 70 percent of global oil demand from 2015 to 2020.

The region will also be boosted by the development of both onshore and offshore gas markets driven by growing regional demand and high gas prices in Japan and South Korea, which could see shallow water drilling grow 29 percent between now and 2020.  

In addition, next year there will be an increase in development wells drilled offshore in the region: Thailand will drill some 370, followed by China and India, each of which will drill around 200. The regional total by 2020 will be 1,600 wells -- a growth of more than 30 percent over 2014.

To manage these opportunities effectively, a robust Asian Pacific central hub is considered crucial, and with Malaysia’s strong pedigree in training, the full range of oil and gas skills, operators, engineering firms, oil field service companies, and consultancies are rushing to expand in Kuala Lumpur.

Malaysia Petroleum Resource Corporation (MPRC) is also driving this growth by recommending appropriate policies relating to the oil and gas sector as it reviews existing business regulations and tax incentives. With 4,446 international and domestic companies registered with the state oil and gas company PETRONAS  (Petroliam Nasional Berhad) that already contribute 20 percent to Malaysia’s GDP, this has the potential to be huge.

EarthStream predicts Malaysia could be the hottest oil and gas job market in 2015, and over time, it could well become the “Houston of Asia,” with career opportunities for expats and locals alike.

The real winners in all of this will be the returning Malaysians, whose skills are in extreme demand. Already, companies are putting employment packages together to attract local workers back from their tax-free assignments in the Middle East.

By Kevin Gibson of Earthstream

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Changing Fortunes @ NiHsin Resources?

Ni Hsin Resources Bhd saw some interesting changes in its board room on Friday, amid market talk of its possible venture into the oil and gas sector.
According to a Bursa filing, Rizvi Abdul Halim has been appointed as independent and non-executive director of Ni Hsin, while Datin Ida Suzaini Abdullah has been appointed as executive director.
Worth noting is that both Rizvi and Datin Ida have background and experience in the oil and gas industry. Rizvi is a director in Ideal Jacobs (M) Corp Bhd, which is in the midst of a proposed RTO by oil and gas companies Cekap Technical Services Sdn Bhd and MECIP Global Engineers Sdn Bhd.
Ida's appointment was more interesting as she comes in as an Executive Director. Ida was previously an advisor to Persada Nuri Sdn Bhd — an oil and gas services and consultancy firm, from 2006 to 2008. Back in 1984-1994 she worked with Sarawak Shell Berhad as a Seismic Interpreter, Exploration Geologist and Wellsite geologist.
 

Sometimes it pays to read more into the key players. Ida has a successful career and reputation in oil and gas, added to that, she is also married to Dato Stewart Seatter, the ex GM Murphy Oilin Sarawak.  He is now running his own consultancy Source Venture Consultants, advising O&G companies.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Great Find - Double Claypot Curry Fish Head (SS2)

I go to SS2 quite a bit so whenever there are new shops I would notice. I think this eatery just opened less than a week or two ago. Basic, clean spartan design with a visible open kitchen, which makes sense nowadays as we diners like to see how hygienic the food preparation process is.





 
 
 Gave it a try, and the verdict is very very good. They are so confident that they only have two main dishes, the fish head curry (Chinese style) and the ribs pot. Main thing here is the curry fish head, certainly one of the best ever (Chinese style). They have servings for 1, 2, 4, 6 pax .... so no worries there. Everything that needed to be in that claypot were there like old friends for mahjong... ladies fingers, eggplant, cabbage, taufoopok, fuchuk, long beans and long beans... and the fish head of course (as the heads are not cheap, there will never be enough fish head parts in the curry to satisfy us ... but I think the veggies go very well with the lemak curry anyways).

I think I tasted tomatoes too, it was a good move as the sourishness balances out the lemak. Its hard to call it the best ... its more like you go to a friend's house whose mum can cook very well, and she serves the most complete and sincere fish head curry (no shortcuts) ... thats the best home cooked feeling I got.  9.5/10



 Its on the same row as Watson's, Bee Chiang Hiang, Jojo's Kitchen and the pet shop. But, close on Mondays I think.

The braised ribs is actually soft bones, which I really liked. Its pretty good ... 8/10 ... just needed to add fatiu and partkok.... then would be a 9/10.


Remember to order the side of fuchuk, freshly fried and crispy... to dunk into the curry.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Seriously Side Splitting Signs












Internships & Fresh Graduates' Positions

Murasaki ts (a MSC status company) is looking for two interns and two full time positions for fresh graduates. If you are interested to get a footing into the world of finance, markets and immerse in the energy of a start up, we would like to hear from you.

Our office is located at Solaris Mont Kiara. Email CV to: joanne.tee@murasaki.co

More information about the company can be obtained by visiting www.murasaki.co

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Pickings From The Carnage

The sharp correction in small caps, weighed in by sagging oil prices, has now yielded some good pickup opportunities. In my view, there won't be a major correction, not with interest rates still at such low levels, even another hike up or two won't be sufficient to derail the liquidity, astute recovery in the US and pockets of EU. (Price charts courtesy of Murasaki ts).

NiHsin Resources - Substantial bulks of the shares have crossed over the last couple of weeks indicating new forces at the helm. Whispers of a good O&G outfit will be injected with new influential directors coming on board. Wheels in motion. Good opportunity now considering it was trying to break 56 sen a couple of weeks back.






Ideal Jacobs - Based on my previous postings, the deal has already be signed and submitted. Coupled with the 1 for 2 free, its a steal below 45 sen. Can buy to hold for exercise.


GBH - The Dynac RTO being called off is bad, at least there is over RM190m cash coming in. Coupled with existing cash balance of RM45m, we are looking at a company with NTA of almost RM1.50 with more than RM1.20 per share in cash. I can see no other "more attractive counter" for RTO with that amount of cash inside. Plus they have to do it with the next 12 months. Way oversold. I see fair value when you include the premium for a Main board listed counter at RM2.00 before any suggestion for an RTO, and the warrant convertible at RM1.00 by2020 is ridiculously over sold as well.






Ireka - A no brainer as their main asset will be unwound and delisted which will bring forth a likely cash dividend of almost RM1.00. Only issue is investors will have to hold for 6-12 months for value to be unlocked.







NOTE: The above opinion is not an invitation to buy or sell. It serves as a blogging activity of my investing thoughts and ideas, this does not represent an investment advisory service as I charge no subscription or management fees (donations are welcomed though). I may already have positions in the stock mentioned above. The content on this site is provided as general information only and should not be taken as investment advice. All site content, shall not be construed as a recommendation to buy or sell any security or financial instrument. The ideas expressed are solely the opinions of the author. Any action that you take as a result of information, analysis, or commentary on this site is ultimately your responsibility. Consult your investment adviser before making any investment decisions.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Here's Why Oil Prices Are Sagging

Its FRACKING ... or shale oil. Almost without warning, the US is almost self sufficient in oil. The map from Fortune is amazingly clear. The US already produces as much oil as the following combined countries: Venezuela, UK, UAE, Ukraine, Libya, Oman and Ecuador. All the less reasons to go to war from now on.


FORTUNE: U.S. oil production suddenly rivals that of some major exporters.

The U.S. is in the middle of an oil boom. Over the past several years, advances in fracking technology have allowed the U.S. to tap into its vast reserves of shale oil, making the country one of the world’s largest producers of crude, upending the global energy marketplace. With nearly two-thirds more output now than six years ago, the U.S. produces 8.4 million barrels of crude per day. That’s still less than Russia, but more than twice as much as Iran or Canada. Texas alone now out-gushes the United Arab Emirates, Mexico, and Nigeria. Forget OPEC—meet the new league of oil-producing states, the united ones. (click the map to enlarge)
BRI

S&M Show Podcast

REINVENTION OF BORNEO OIL & AMMB SALE


Hap Seng has emerged as a new substantial shareholder in Borneo Oil. Is it for their gold business or bio diesel storage business? AMMB seems to be up for sale but where are the buyers? 


http://www.bfm.my/sm-salvatoredali-malaysiafinance-reinventionofborneooilammbsale-141008.html



Song Pick:  When did rap/hiphop got its start? The first known big hit has to be Rapper's Delight by The Sugarhill Gang back in 1979. You actually can listen to the lyrics, unlike the rap songs now.






Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Equity Risk Premium - The New Best Single Measure For Stocks

Great article from Fortune magazine:





It’s called the Equity Risk Premium, or ERP, and it’s been lauded as the Holy Grail of corporate finance.

Investors have come down with a case of the jitters, and for a good reason.
Since September 22, the Dow has careened through three days of 100 point-plus losses. The gigantic pop in the Alibaba IPO and the Chinese e-commerce phenomenon’s epic valuation have begun to stir fears that we’ve hit a market peak.
What’s worrying is that prices are displaying far greater faith in the future than the unimpressive fundamentals suggest is warranted. We’re living in a world of record-high corporate valuations and mediocre earnings growth.
To get the most accurate picture of the situation, let’s examine a metric that tells you when stocks are really a buy, and when they’re overly pricey. It’s called the Equity Risk Premium, or ERP, and it’s been lauded as the Holy Grail of corporate finance. The name may sound wonky, but for making money in stocks in the long-term, it’s the most practical measurement you’ll ever find.
The Equity Risk Premium is the extra return that investors demand for taking the additional risk of choosing stocks over far safer Treasury bonds. The higher the ERP, the bigger the potential future returns. Risk premiums ballooned, for example, in the panic of 2009, and folks who bought then profited handsomely. By contrast, when the ERP is below average, gains on equities tend to be weak or non-existent in the years to come.
What’s misleading is that the real, sustainable ERP has been disguised by a temporary phenomenon: unsustainably low interest rates. But it’s no great challenge to unmask an adjusted, realistic ERP from the illusory, official one. And as we’ll see, that slender figure is cause for alarm.
The ERP is simply the expected return on equities minus the inflation-adjusted yield on 10-year treasuries—that’s the extra cushion, or margin for error, you’d expect for braving equities. The best measure of the expected return is the earnings yield on the CAPE, or Cyclically Adjusted Price-Earnings Ratio, developed by economist Robert Shiller. The CAPE is the most reliable yardstick for returns since it adjusts for temporary, highly misleading swings in profits. Right now, the E/P (earnings to price ratio) on the CAPE stands at 3.8%. That’s the inverse of the Shiller price-to-earnings ratio of 26.3.
So the expected return on stocks is now 3.8%, adjusted for inflation. The second step consists of subtracting the real rate on the 10-year Treasury to get the ERP. The long bond is now yielding around 2.5%, and inflation is running at around 2%. So the real yield is a mere 0.5%.
Hence, the ERP is our 3.8% expected return minus 0.5%, or 3.3%. By historical standards, that’s a good figure. It’s an encouraging signal for the bulls, even the responsible ones. They can argue that the expected return of 3.8% plus inflation of 2%, or 5.8% in total, isn’t great, but clocks the yields on the long bond. So why not buy stocks?
Even the optimists, however, acknowledge that interest rates need to rise. Today, the incredibly low 0.5% real yield has created a mirage in the form of a superficially strong ERP. Things always go back to normal, so consider the results when the Fed unshackles interest rates and lets them swing back to their historic norms. Over time, real rates hover in the 2% range. What will happen when they rise from today’s level of 0.5% to 2%, bringing the yield on the 10-year Treasury bond to 4% (the total of the 2% real yield plus a 2% premium for future inflation)?
Now, we can re-calculate the ERP to eliminate the funhouse mirror effect of artificially low interest rates. The expected return of 3.8%, minus the reasonable, future real rate of 2%, leaves an under-nourished ERP of just 1.8%.
That’s not enough to justify investing in stocks. Let’s assume investors still demand a spread over bonds of 3.3 points, matching what they’re supposed to be getting today. Now they’ll require future returns not of 5.8%, but 7.3% (that’s the real rate of 2% plus the ERP of 3.3% plus inflation of 2%).
Restoring the ERP to attractive levels will require a sharp drop in company valuations. The Shiller PE would need to fall from 26.3 to 18.9, causing stock prices to drop by 28%. The S&P would look alluring again at around 1,425. Watching the ERP is all about what really matters in investing: ensuring you are well paid for risk. So follow the sovereign of all market metrics.

Friday, October 03, 2014

The Fun Rides Are Getting Ridiculously Crazy

I like fun rides at amusement parks, not a lot but I am OK to participate. Some roller coaster rides have been getting more and more nerve racking, more turns, spirals, speed and heights that they drop from. Thats still OK because once you move its kinda like on its own speed.

This new ride at Phantasialand in Germany called TALOCAN reminds me of a gut churning ride, Loop-de-Loop, which you still see nowaday of a trainlike seating that goes up in a full circle, like a loop and will stay upside down for a few seconds before dropping. The TALOCAN does that but with a lot more twists. You take this ride, you'd be walking with weak knees for an hour.



Why Hongkongers Will Soldier On

Anson Chan defends and details why HK is in the state she is in.


Anson Chan
Anson Chan has re-emerged in the spotlight amid a growing fight by Hong Kongers for democratic rights. Photograph: Scott Eells/Bloomberg News

She is often called the “Iron Lady” of Hong Kong. Anson Chan earned respect serving as Hong Kong’s second-highest official when the British were in charge. And when the colony was handed back to China in 1997, Beijing enlisted Chan to help with that transition.
While she no longer holds any official government position, Chan, 74, remains one of the most influential political figures in Hong Kong and has re-emerged in the spotlight amid a growing fight by Hong Kongers for democratic rights.
At the heart of the fight is China’s promise during the 1997 handover that Hong Kong would be allowed a level of autonomy. Many in Hong Kong believe China has broken that commitment – especially when it comes to media freedoms and the process of choosing a chief executive, which is currently done by a committee tightly controlled by Beijing.
Amid the growing polarisation, Chan has staked out a centrist position, supporting pro-democracy activists but pushing them to take a measured, practical approach to negotiating with China.
And she has used her profile to drum up international support for the Hong Kongers’ campaign for democracy. Her recent visits to Britain and to Washington – where she saw vice-president Joe Biden, members of Congress and the state department – secured statements of support even as they drew angry retorts from Beijing.
Chan’s efforts reflect her approach to seemingly intractable problems: identify the best compromise deal possible, then push on every lever possible to achieve that goal.
In a recent interview, Chan talked about her appeals for international support, her assessment of Hong Kong’s fight for democratic rights and her vision for Hong Kong’s future. Here are condensed excerpts from that conversation:
How has Hong Kong’s future turned out differently from what you imagined in 1997?
“Of course, all of us had a bit of apprehension because we didn’t know what actually would happen after the handover. I personally put in a great deal of effort and time to sell the joint declaration, to secure international support and to tell Hong Kong people, ‘All will be well because we have all these promises.’
“I never in my wildest dream predicted 17 years after the handover that Hong Kong would be in this state. Nor did I foresee – and this is particularly disappointing – that all three parties to the joint declaration and the Basic Law [Hong Kong’s equivalent of a constitution] – Beijing, Britain, Hong Kong’s government – would all choose to walk away from their promises to the people of Hong Kong.”
Why have you focused in your proposals on a compromise that gives people in Hong Kong more say in the nominating process for the chief executive, rather than simply “one person, one vote”, as others have proposed?
“Our group, Hong Kong 2020, has listened to all the noise that has been made, particularly by the pro-Beijing forces in Hong Kong and by Beijing officials, and by the liaison office. One message is totally clear, they will not accept civil nomination [allowing voters themselves to nominate candidates for chief executive], because they claim this is a breach of the Basic Law.
“So whilst we dispute this, we say, ‘Let’s try and see whether we can’t broker a compromise solution.’ So we spent one year checking with the different aspects of the community, listening to their views, and we arrived at a set of proposals that are fully compliant with the Basic Law, with no civil nominations but a chance to broaden the representativeness of the nominating committee. Because this is what the Basic Law prescribes.
“But what does the government do? The government keeps telling us that there’s room for negotiation, let’s sit down and seriously talk. But every single compromise proposal – and it’s not just ours, there are several others – one after another, they have been shot down by the government. So where is the sincerity? Where is the commitment towards actually trying to broker a compromise?
“We all know the government is waiting for instructions from Beijing, which are expected sometime in August.”
Why should the international community care what happens in Hong Kong?
“The international community takes an interest in Hong Kong, if for nothing else than their own self-interest. Because they have investments here, they have nationals living here, they have a whole raft of bilateral agreements with Hong Kong, ranging from cooperation in law enforcement, preventing human trafficking, narcotics, protection of intellectual properties. All these have been concluded on the basis that there is a very distinct system in Hong Kong totally different from anything prevailing in mainland China.
“If the two systems go, surely Hong Kong will no longer be in [a] position to honour our treaty obligations.”
How do you see your role in Hong Kong these days? How can you best use that to the advantage of Hong Kong?
“I’ve never been interested in particularly carving out a role for myself. But the reason why I decided to adopt a higher profile starting in 2006 is because I saw things deteriorating very rapidly, both in terms of the government dragging its feet on democratic reforms, but even more importantly on the whole quality of governance.
“One of the things we prided ourselves on was the fact that Hong Kong’s civil servants were a genuine meritocracy. You didn’t have to resort to political patronage. But that’s what has happened ever since [former chief executive] CH Tung introduced the political appointment system in 2002 – which by the way is the reason why I decided to retire early, because I felt that that system was thoroughly, fundamentally flawed.
“Because the chief executive is not popularly elected, to concentrate the power to appoint the top posts within the Hong Kong government in one pair of hands, without having checks and balance, is asking for trouble.”
If the opportunity ever emerged, would you ever run for chief executive yourself?
“I’m a pragmatist above anything else. There are two reasons [I wouldn’t run]: One, I would not be acceptable to China; secondly, this job needs a younger person. I’m already 74.
“I’ll continue to do what I can to encourage people to speak up because it’s very important. I cannot guarantee that even if we speak up and express our concerns, that we will necessarily succeed. But if we remain silent and do nothing, we definitely will lose.”
This article appeared in the Guardian Weekly, which incorporates material from the Washington Post

Thursday, October 02, 2014

She Ain't Heavy, She's My Daughter

The embattled Chief Executive of HK SAR, Mr. Leung ... while busy putting out fires on the protesters, got absolutely no help from his daughter ... OMG!!! From the way she writes and the things she said, its obvious she is well educated and uneducated at the same time.



Hong Kong Chief Executive CY Leung's daughter Chai Yan Leung made some very questionable comments on Facebook earlier today.
Seemingly responding to negative comments about a necklace she wears in her profile picture, she wrote:
This is actually a beautiful necklace bought at Lane Crawford (yes- funded by all you HK taxpayers!! So are all my beautiful shoes and dresses and clutches!! Thank you so much!!!!) Actually maybe I shouldn't say 'all you'- since most of you here are probably unemployed hence have all this time obsessed with bombarding me with messages.
Here's the full screenshot:
Considering that tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of Hongkongers are protesting in the streets demanding that her father resign, this social media activity strikes us as tone deaf to say the least.
Besides protesting for the right to fully democratically elect their own leader, Hong Kong citizens are unhappy with growing economic inequality in this Special Administrative Region of China since it was handed over from Britain in 1997.
Chai Yan Leung made headlines earlier this year when she posted self harmphotos on Facebook and criticized her mother as lacking loyalty and virtue.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

S&M Show Podcast

THE HK FACTOR & DATUK DR. YU'S CONUNDRUM


Looking at the underlying reasons behind the mass protest in HK and Datuk Dr. Yu's perceived role as a value investor.


http://www.bfm.my/sm-salvatore-dali-malaysiafinance-thehkfactoranddatukdryusconumdrum-141001.html

Song Pick: For anyone over 40, this has to be one of their top 3 albums of all time. Meatloaf's Bat Out Of Hell, or the older generation's musical version of Twilight. Of course the brains and composer behind all that was Jim Steinman. The big hit, You Took The Words Right Out Of My Mouth...


Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Boundless Sea & Sky

Give the people what they want, we are not asking for much, just what is fair, what is right and equitable ... our struggles are ongoing and many of us feel for our HK friends. Beyond's song "Boundless Sea and Sky" which epitomises the yearning for freedom and liberty, from all that is "not right".... rightfully is the anthem.





 海阔天空 – Beyond
今天我 寒夜里看雪飘过
Gam tin ngoh, hon ye lui hon suet piu gwoh
Today I saw snow drifting through the cold night
怀著冷却了的心窝飘远方
Waai jeuk laang keuk liu dik sam woh piu yuen fong
With the cold, my heart and mind drift off to faraway places
风雨里追赶 雾里分不清影踪
Fung yue lui jui gon, mo lui fan bat ching ying jung
Trying to catch up in the wind and rain, in the fog you can’t tell the shadows apart
天空海阔你与我 可会变(谁没在变)
Tin hung hoi foot nei yue ngoh, how wui bin (sui moot joi bin)
Vast sky wide ocean, you and I, who would change?  (Who wouldn’t change?)
多少次 迎著冷眼与嘲笑
Doh siu chi, ying jeuk laang ngaan yue jaau siu
Many times I’ve faced the cold with eyes of ridicule
从没有放弃过心中的理想
Chung moot yau fong hei gwoh sam jung dik lei seung
Never have I gave up my heart’s hopes and ideals
一刹那恍惚 若有所失的感觉
Yat saat na fong fat, yeuk yau soh sat dik gam gok
A moment of absentmindedness, there’s also the feeling of loss
不知不觉已变淡 心里爱(谁明白我)
Bat ji bat gok yi bin daam, sam lui ngoi
Without realization, it faded, the love in my heart (Who understands me?)
原谅我这一生不羁放纵爱自由
Yuen leung ngoh je yat saang bat gei fong jung ngoi ji yau
Forgive me this life of uninhibited love and indulgence of freedom
也会怕有一天会跌倒(OH NO)
Ya wui pa yau yat tin wui dit do (oh no)
Although I’m still afraid that one day I might fall
被弃了理想, 谁人都可以
Bui hei liu lei seung, sui yan do ho yi
Abandon your hopes and ideals, anyone can do
那会怕有一天只你共我
Na wui pa yau yat tin ji nei gung ngoh
I’m not afraid if someday there’s only you and me
今天我 寒夜里看雪飘过
Gam tin ngoh, hon ye lui hon suet piu gwoh
Today I saw snow drifting through the cold night
怀著冷却了的心窝飘远方
Waai jeuk laang keuk liu dik sam woh piu yuen fong
With the cold, my heart and mind drift off to faraway places
风雨里追赶 雾里分不清影踪
Fung yue lui jui gon, mo lui fan bat ching ying jung
Trying to catch up in the wind and rain, in the fog you can’t tell the shadows apart
天空海阔你与我 可会变(谁没在变)
Tin hung hoi foot nei yue ngoh, how wui bin (sui moot joi bin)
Vast sky wide ocean, you and I, who would change?  (Who wouldn’t change?)
原谅我这一生不羁放纵爱自由
Yuen leung ngoh je yat saang bat gei fong jung ngoi ji yau
Forgive me this life of uninhibited love and indulgence of freedom
也会怕有一天会跌倒(OH NO)
Ya wui pa yau yat tin wui dit do (oh no)
Although I’m still afraid that one day I might fall
被弃了理想, 谁人都可以
Bui hei liu lei seung, sui yan do ho yi
Abandon your hopes and ideals, anyone can do
那会怕有一天只你共我
Na wui pa yau yat tin ji nei gung ngoh
I’m not afraid if someday there’s only you and me
仍然自由自我
Ying yin ji yau ji ngoh
Still I am free, still I am independent
永远高唱我歌, 走遍千里
Wing yuen go cheung ngoh goh, jau pin chin lei
Always loudly singing my song, traveling thousands of miles
原谅我这一生不羁放纵爱自由
Yuen leung ngoh je yat saang bat gei fong jung ngoi ji yau
Forgive me this life of uninhibited love and indulgence of freedom
也会怕有一天会跌倒(OH NO)
Ya wui pa yau yat tin wui dit do (oh no)
Although I’m still afraid that one day I might fall
被弃了理想, 谁人都可以
Bui hei liu lei seung, sui yan do ho yi
Abandon your hopes and ideals, anyone can do
那会怕有一天只你共我
Na wui pa yau yat tin ji nei gung ngoh
I’m not afraid if someday there’s only you and me
被弃了理想, 谁人都可以
Bui hei liu lei seung, sui yan do ho yi
Abandon your hopes and ideals, anyone can do
那会怕有一天只你共我
Na wui pa yau yat tin ji nei gung ngoh
I’m not afraid if someday there’s only you and me