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TRADE WARS
Australia to regulate virtual currency exchanges like Bitcoin
by Staff Writers
Sydney (AFP) Aug 18, 2017


China gets tough on long, odd company names
Shanghai (AFP) Aug 17, 2017 - "Beijing Afraid of Wife Technology" and "What You Looking at Technology" are among the kind of company names that will become a thing of the past under new Chinese government rules.

After launching a campaign to eliminate public signs with poor English translations -- or "Chinglish" -- China's communist rulers are now taking aim at firms that attempt to register names that are excessively long or strange.

The Legal Daily cited names of existing firms that would not be allowed under the new rules, including "Shanghai Wife Biggest Electronic Commerce" and "Hangzhou No Trouble Looking for Trouble Internet Technology".

The state newspaper also gave the example of a condom company called "There is a Group of Young People with Dreams, Who Believe They Can Create Wonders of Life Under Uncle Niu's Leadership Internet Technology".

The State Administration for Industry and Commerce brought the restrictions in this month, while also banning company names deemed offensive or racist or having religious or political connotations.

China's drive for normality also moved the government to previously ban "weird architecture" in a country that has seen a huge construction boom.

The futuristic Beijing headquarters of state broadcaster China Central Television is popularly nicknamed "The Big Underpants" and there were complaints that a pair of bridges in the southwestern megalopolis of Chongqing looked remarkably reminiscent of female genitalia.

Australia is set to regulate virtual currency exchanges such as Bitcoin and strengthen the powers of its financial intelligence agency AUSTRAC as it cracks down on money laundering and terrorism financing.

The changes came two weeks after AUSTRAC took the country's biggest bank, the Commonwealth, to court for alleged "serious and systemic non-compliance" of money laundering and terror financing laws.

It follows similar reforms by Japan to regulate virtual currency, after the country found itself at the epicentre of a multi-million dollar embezzlement scandal following the collapse of the Tokyo-based MtGox Bitcoin exchange.

"Stopping the movement of money to criminals and terrorists is a vital part of our national security defences and we expect regulated businesses in Australia to comply with our comprehensive regime," Justice Minister Michael Keenan said Thursday.

He added that the digital currency exchange sector was being regulated for the first time, while low-risk industries such as cash-in-transit would be subject to fewer regulations.

Virtual currency has grown rapidly since the 2009 launch of Bitcoin, and there are now more than 100 crypto-currency options.

But the sector has suffered from highly publicised scandals like the 2014 collapse of MtGox.

Backers say virtual currencies offer an efficient and anonymous way to store and transfer funds online.

But critics argue the lack of a legal framework governing the currency, the opaque way it is traded and its volatility, make it dangerous.

TRADE WARS
China's debt on a 'dangerous trajectory': IMF
Beijing (AFP) Aug 15, 2017
China's massive debt is on a "dangerous" path, raising the risk of a sharp slowdown in growth, the IMF warned on Tuesday, urging Beijing to speed up structural reforms. The International Monetary Fund, which has repeatedly warned China over its ballooning debt, said in a new report that the world's second largest economy must turn toward a sustainable growth path. "International experien ... read more

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