He Huifeng

He Huifeng

Guangdong Correspondant

Huifeng is a contributor to Inkstone. She is an award-winning journalist with a focus on China’s political, economic and social issues.

Location
Guangdong
Language spoken
English, Mandarin, Cantonese
Areas of Expertise
Chinese political economics, China news, content editing
China’s poorest are battling to survive
Li Ming, a 36-year-old marketing manager for a car company in Beijing, is feeling the pinch for the first time in her life. When the coronavirus outbreak started, car sales slumped and she was furloughed from her job in February. To make matters worse, her husband, who works for an airline, has also had to take a 40% pay cut. “Suddenly half our household income evaporated,” Li said. “I haven’t had a decent sleep for months. We have a mortgage to pay and two children. They are a heavy burden now.” Li was able to save 12,000 yuan ($1,700) a month by firing the family’s domestic helper. “I explained and told her not to come back after the Lunar New Year holiday, which she was spending with her
Migrant workers struggle to find jobs as pandemic hits China’s factories
At a suburb area in the southern metropolis of Guangzhou, hundreds of migrant workers were standing, sitting or squatting next to a temporary bus stop, with their bags, suitcases, kitchen items, sewing machines, refrigerators, and air conditioners.  They were not fleeing a natural disaster, but a sluggish manufacturing industry that could not offer the jobs they had before the coronavirus pandemic.  Some had arrived in the manufacturing hub in southern China from Hubei province, where lockdowns have been lifted over the past weeks. They had quickly made the decision to leave, as the economic opportunities they had arrived in search of no longer existed. The scramble for labor as China sought
Study says coronavirus did not originate in Wuhan seafood market
The novel coronavirus that causes the infectious disease known as Covid-19 did not originate at a seafood market in the central China city of Wuhan as was first thought, a new study by a team of Chinese scientists suggests. The coronavirus, known as SARS-CoV-2, was imported from elsewhere, said researchers from Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden under the Chinese Academy of Sciences and the Chinese Institute for Brain Research. The team, led by Dr Yu Wenbin, sequenced the genomic data of 93 SARS-CoV-2 samples provided by 12 countries in a bid to track down the source of the infection and understand how it spreads. What they found was that while the virus had spread rapidly within the H
Why Chinese banks are giving out free pork to new customers
Handing out servings of expensive pork as a reward for opening an account is the latest gimmick being used by a growing number of small local banks across China to lure new depositors. The fact that pork could be seen as a desirable reward for opening a bank account speaks to the country’s massive shortage of its favorite staple meat. On Monday, clients who deposited $1,430 or more in a three-month time deposit at the Linhai Rural Commercial Bank in Duqiao in Zhejiang province were then eligible to enter a lottery to win a portion of pork ranging from one to ten pounds. “The money is still my own, and the interest is good. I’m happy to receive a piece of pork in addition,” one female client,
The Chinese city struggling after Samsung closes its last factory
Looking out over her small restaurant in Huizhou city on the north of the Pearl River Delta, known to be the beating heart of China’s manufacturing industry, Li Bing can still picture the hustle and bustle of a throng of customers from a nearby factory. But now, as Li looks up from her broom, she is gr eeted by empty tables, a sight that has been familiar for the last two months, and one that is replicated around the local industrial complex, located in the southern Chinese province of Guandong.  The reason behind the downturn is simple: the closure of Samsung’s complex in Huizhou, which until October was the South Korean company’s last smartphone factory in China. Li’s restaurant had bene
China’s pork shortage puts dog meat back on the menu
Like most small restaurants in this rural part of Wanan county in the eastern province of Jiangxi, the Little Wealth God does not have a menu. Diners go directly to the kitchen to pick vegetables, fish and raw meat, and let the chef know how they would like them cooked. But due to its spiraling price, China’s most popular meat, pork, is nowhere to be seen. Instead, many locals are opting for a traditional dish that had lost appeal until recently. “Why not choose dog meat if you want some meat?” the waiter recommended, adding high prices meant most diners no longer felt it worthwhile to order pork. Renewed interest in dog meat is just one of the side-effects that a massive pork shortage, cau
Could China’s next tech IPO hub be...Macau?
Could the global gaming capital of Macau become known for something other than casinos? Yes, according to a senior official who has just submitted a proposal to the Chinese leadership to create a Nasdaq-style, tech-oriented stock exchange in the former Portuguese colony. He Xiaojun, an official in the provincial financial bureau of Guangdong, which neighbors Macau, said he hoped to get approval from the national authorities by mid-December, ahead of the 20th anniversary of the city’s return to China, according to the Sina Finance website. Guangdong, home of the high-tech megacity of Shenzhen, is seeking to tap more capital for its tech companies. Guangdong is also the center of the proposed
‘We’re in trouble’: China’s middle class frets that the good times are over
An impending sense of fear and trouble is mounting among members of China’s urban middle class about the outlook for their prosperity and wealth amid the slowing economy. Following China’s economic reforms, an expanding middle class has enjoyed decent jobs and abundant business opportunities, constantly rising property values and incomes, as well as relatively easy personal and capital movement abroad. However, the population that has gained the most from China’s economic success is becoming increasingly worried with the government imposing tight restrictions on the flow of funds out of China and curbs on information from the outside world. The weakening of the yuan exchange rate, which make
Samsung’s last smartphone factory in China
In its heyday, a drab complex in a southern Chinese city was Samsung’s largest factory in mainland China, producing one in five smartphones sold in China in 2011. Now, the small shops and suppliers that surround the vast complex have fallen silent. A notice posted on the gate, dated February 28, says hiring has been suspended. Huizhou Samsung Electronics is Samsung’s last smartphone factory in China after the firm closed its facility in Tianjin in December, having already ceased network equipment production earlier in 2018 at its factory in Shenzhen. Workers in Huizhou, in the southern province of Guangdong, talk of colleagues having already accepted voluntary redundancy. Other local residen
The collapse of China’s ‘fake towns’
China’s “thousand charming towns” initiative was supposed to dot the vast countryside with beautiful, liveable and themed villages. They carried names as eclectic and zany as Crayfish Town, Asian Games Town and Poetry Town. A planned Happy Town would come complete with a “sex park.” But last week’s collapse of a private company behind many of these developments has left the future of those new towns unclear and thousands of investors desperate to recoup their money. The sudden failure of the Hangzhou-based company, JC Group, exposed the huge risks behind the country’s state-led, debt-fuelled development drive. It also brought into sharp focus hidden risks that haunt China’s slowing economy.