Tom Carter looking lonely at an in-store book-signing in Hong Kong

Tom Carter on the making of a China anthology

It was in the heat of a sweltering Hainan summer that I stretched out and read Tom Carter's carefully collected expat compendium, Unsavory Elements. The book had already made the rounds of the expat city mags and a few blogs, and thus I had read a healthy mix of reviews. Even with its impressive contributor list, I must admit my anticipation was somewhat tempered by my concern that I would be forcing myself throu…

Hu Xiaoyi, vice-minister of human resources and social security. Photo: english.cri.cn

Foreigners remain lukewarm to China’s social security scheme

Two and a half years after China's Social Insurance Law rolled out, an action that saw the extension of the country's social security programs to foreigner works, only about 20% of expats working in China had joined.

Hu Xiaoyi, vice-minister of human resources and social security, told China Daily that more than 200,000 expats have participated in various social insurance programs covering basic pension, medic…

The unnamed foreigner in question, the damage to his coat clearly visible

Foreigner who cried ‘fraud’ and his father to be fined, detained and deported

Beijing police have announced the foreigner who originally cried "fraud" after being accused by a woman of hitting her with his motorbike will be fined, detained and deported.

The incident occurred on December 2 and immediately went viral across Chinese social media. Initially netizens appeared to favour the foreigner's story, as tales of (fake) accident victims blaming people just trying to help abound in China. …

foreigner-taxi-fight-beijing

Foreigner smacked, de-shirted in altercation with Beijing cabbie

A video making the rounds, lacking much in the way of details, shows a foreigner being held by two Chinese after what is presumed to be a dispute over a fare. After being hit several times, and being unable to get the cabbie to release his shirt, the foreign man slips out of his shirt and attends to his bag.

If you have more information, or have been in similar situations, please let us know in the comments.

foreigner-schemed-chaoyang-beijing-01

He said, she said: foul-mouthed foreigner in Beijing culpable or conned?

When the story initially broke December 2 on Weibo, the version of events indicated a middle-aged Chinese woman had accused a foreigner, presumably from the UK, of hitting and severely injuring her with his bike. He, and eye-witnesses at the time, denied this -- stating that she simply fell to the ground after he passed.

The altercation happened in Beijing's Chaoyang District. The ensuing argument between the …

Red Obsession

Review: Red Obsession

Don't get me wrong. I love wine, and drink an embarrassing amount of it. I suppose it's a bit like modern art in my mind -- or any thing where you can purchase involvement. When it's obviously good but under (or averagely) appreciated I enjoy it; but that joy is conversely affected by the price tag and hype attached to it. And so it was with a bit of excitement and apprehension that I recently watched "Red Obsess…

Jerry and Luo Ting (r) were found guilty of bigamy at Yuexiu Court. Photo China.org.cn

Odd News: Foreigner in Guangzhou gets harsh sentenced for bigamy

On October 17, a 48-year-old Briton was sentenced to 5 months detention, with a 6 month suspended sentence, in a Guangzhou court for the crime of leaving his wife in the UK and living as a married couple with his Chinese business partner, Luo Ting; who was also sentenced to 4 months detention.

The British man, whom China.org.cn called "Jerry" (a pseudonym), met "Luo Ting" (also a pseudonym) in 2005, after comi…

24-year-old Venezuelan, Carlos, near where he rescued a woman from a river in Guangzhou. Photo by Li Zhan

24-year-old Venezuelan man saves woman from river in Guangzhou

According to witnesses, around 3 a.m. Saturday morning an inebriated woman fell into a river in Guangzhou's Haizhu district after a fight with her boyfriend.

Hearing the commotion of the resultant onlooker crowd, a 24-year-old Venezuelan man, Carlos, asked his taxi driver to stop. Though he could not see the woman in the river, he removed his shoes and cell phone, and entered the cold dark water.

Onlookers …

Chinese visa

Clarity on new visa classes from Ministry of Foreign Affairs notice

Last week the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a bilingual notice that spells out China's new visa structure.

Beijing-based immigration lawyer Gary Chodorow has published an article highlighting some of recent changes in the Chinese visa structure in an easy-to-read layout.

The post breaks down the most common visas, explaining both what the previous law and the new statue/regulations are, as well as providin…

Guangzhou at Night. Photo by Ian Wallace.

Two British women stuck in China after argument at Guangzhou shop

Two tourists from the United Kingdom have found themselves in a "complex criminal investigation which could see them stranded in China for up to a year."

The women, Mary Idowu and Esther Jubril-Badmos, travelled to Guangzhou for a week of shopping in June when they were involved in an altercation with a vendor over a 500 RMB deposit paid for what they claim turned out to be counterfeit slippers. Idowu, 59, and…