Coronavirus turns Germans more critical of the US than China
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Inkstone Index features a single, illuminating number that helps you make sense of China. 73%: The proportion of Germans whose opinion of the US has deteriorated because of how America has handled the coronavirus pandemic. The number more than doubles the 36% who said their opinion of China has deteriorated because of the pandemic, according to a survey of 1,057 people conducted in early April by the Körber Foundation, a German non-profit that promotes political dialogue. On the flip side, only 5% of Germans had their perception of America improve, compared to 25% for China. “America’s response to the virus has clearly accelerated a feeling of estrangement on the
Scientists make coronavirus out of brewer’s yeast. It’s not for fun
Scientists have created a fully synthesized strain of the coronavirus with brewer’s yeast, according to a new study from Europe. The development will help give health authorities and diagnostic laboratories access to the virus without needing clinical samples, said the researchers, led by Joerg Jores and Volker Thiel from the University of Bern in Switzerland, in a paper published in Nature on Monday. Experts said the man-made strain would help researchers conduct real-world experiments to find cures and improve preventive measures. However, a common problem of using artificial viruses is that their mutations may run wild and render the experiments meaningless. But the new strain, dubbed rS
The post-coronavirus world doesn’t look good for China
The new coronavirus has killed over 200,000 people and nearly ground the global economy to a halt. The next ripple effect could be a new Cold War, this time between China and the United States. Although it remains unclear when and how the pandemic will end, Beijing is preparing for an international backlash of blame over the disease outbreak and appears ready to push back, according to analysts. Chinese authorities have kick-started an internal process to solicit advice from think tanks, academics and others on how to deal with an increasingly adversarial global environment, said a government adviser who declined to give his name. At the same time, the devastating human toll and suffering c
The coronavirus appears to be highly adaptable
Geneticists from Britain and Germany have mapped the evolutionary path of the coronavirus that causes Covid-19 and determined there are currently three versions of it spreading around the world. The discovery of how the variants were formed and then spread could help scientists to identify its source and explain why it is so contagious. The researchers analyzed the first 160 complete viral genomes sequenced from patients between December 24 and March 4, then reconstructed the early evolutionary pathway of Covid-19 in humans through its mutations. “There are too many rapid mutations to neatly trace a Covid-19 family tree. We used a mathematical network algorithm to visualize all the plausibl
Only 6% of coronavirus infections are detected, German study says
A study suggests that the vast majority of people infected by the coronavirus remain undetected, raising the specter of fresh outbreaks if social distancing measures and travel restrictions are lifted too early. Researchers of the study, from the University of Gottingen in Germany, said only 6% of coronavirus infections had been detected across the 40 countries they analyzed. The researchers made the assessment after comparing estimates of coronavirus infection fatality rates in a previous study with the number of confirmed cases reported by the countries, including Italy, Spain, the United States and France. The researchers concluded that the only way to prevent a renewed outbreak of Covid-
A developer is building a replica German city in China to lure investors
Imagine, after enjoying the hotels and gambling in Macau, driving across a bridge for just over one mile and visiting ... Germany.  In the coming years, travelers may be able to replicate this experience thanks to a replica German city being built in southern China near the world’s biggest gambling hub. But the coronavirus outbreak has put a halt to the project, an interruption that the owners hope will only be temporary.  Hong Kong-listed developer TFG International is spending $229 million to build the project known as Hengqin German City on an island south of Zhuhai in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong. The island is connected to Macau by the 1.1 mile Lotus Bridge. The city will
Top Chinese spying agency embroiled in German probe
China's top intelligence agency has been embroiled in a German probe into a former ambassador of the European Union who was accused of spying for China. Police raided nine addresses in Berlin and Brussels, as well as the German states of Baden-Württemberg and Bavaria, on Wednesday. The authorities were targeting the ex-ambassador, who was not named, and two other people. The news was first reported by Der Spiegel magazine, which says that two of the addresses in question were linked to people who provided private and business information to the Chinese Ministry of State Security, the country’s top counter-intelligence and foreign intelligence unit. The case is the first in recent years invol
Is Trump bringing China and Germany closer?
President Donald Trump has brought the United States and China to the brink of a trade war in an attempt to get Beijing to shrink its $375 billion trade surplus. There’s another country with a significant trade surplus that has drawn Trump’s ire:  Germany, which exports $64 billion more to the US than the other way around. Now Trump’s rhetoric may be drawing these two countries closer together. German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived in China Thursday during this delicate moment to rally Beijing’s support in her efforts to boost free trade and strengthen multilateralism across the world, Merkel said ahead of the two-day visit. She will begin her trip in Beijing and continue to Shenzhen, Chin