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Russia-China 'joint air patrol' sees Japan and South Korea scramble jets

The patrol near disputed islands prompts both South Korea and Japan to send up jets.

Source: BBC News - China | 24 Jul 2019 | 7:36 am(NZT)

Li Peng: Former Chinese premier known as 'Butcher of Beijing' dies at 90

Li was best known for backing the use of force against protesters in Tiananmen Square in 1989.

Source: BBC News - China | 24 Jul 2019 | 6:22 am(NZT)

Chinese swimmer angered by second podium snub

Britain's Duncan Scott wins bronze in the 200m freestyle at the World Championships and refuses to share the podium with China's gold medallist Sun Yang.

Source: BBC News - China | 24 Jul 2019 | 3:21 am(NZT)

Man City: Pep Guardiola says reports claiming the club has shown 'utter disrespect' in China are false

Manchester City coach Pep Guardiola says reports claiming the club has shown "utter disrespect" on their tour of Asia is "far away from the reality".

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 9:04 pm(NZT)

Huawei cuts jobs at US unit after trade clampdown

The job losses at the Chinese firm's research arm come after Huawei was added to a US trade blacklist.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 7:46 pm(NZT)



Floyd Mayweather: Chinese Boxing Federation names retired boxer as 'special adviser'

Floyd Mayweather agrees to become a "special adviser" to China's Olympic boxing team, according to the Chinese Boxing Federation.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 7:42 pm(NZT)

Mack Horton: Fina warns swimmer over podium snub to rival

The sport's governing body tells Mack Horton not to make "gestures" amid his feud with Sun Yang.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 3:14 pm(NZT)

Hong Kong protests: Police criticised over mob violence

Police deny claims that they stood by as masked men attacked pro-democracy protesters on Sunday.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 12:49 pm(NZT)

Huawei: Government decision on 5G rollout delayed

The implication of the recent US ban on its companies from dealing with Huawei was not clear, the government says.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 6:33 am(NZT)

Hong Kong protests: Were triads involved in the attacks?

The masked men attacked protesters with wooden sticks and metal rods - but were they triad members?

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 5:46 am(NZT)

US flayed for South China Sea comments

CHINA yesterday urged the US to stop stirring up trouble in regard to the issue of the South China Sea and to respect the regional countries’ efforts to resolve disputes through dialogue. Foreign ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang made the remarks following a statement issued on Saturday by US State Department saying it was concerned about reports of China’s interference with oil and gas activities in the South China Sea, including Vietnam’s long-standing exploration and production activities. In the statement, the State Department also cited Secretary of State Michael Pompeo’s comments earlier this year when he said China has blocked the development in the South China Sea through coercive means. US National Security Adviser John Bolton also said China threatens peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region by adopting coercive behavior. “The current situation in the South China Sea is generally stable,” Geng said yesterday, noting that under the framework of fully and effectively implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea, China and ASEAN countries are actively promoting pragmatic maritime cooperation and consultation on a Code of Conduct in the South China Sea to effectively safeguard peace and stability in the region. At the same time, China has been maintaining dialogue and negotiation with concerned countries to actively manage relevant disputes. The international community is fully aware of these facts, he said. “Such behavior will only destabilize the situation in the South China Sea and undermine regional peace and stability,” Geng said. “The remarks made by Mr Pompeo and Mr Bolton are completely void of the facts and are defamatory to the aspirations and efforts of China and ASEAN countries to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea and properly manage disputes. “Countries and people in this region will not be fooled,” he said.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 23 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Chinese boy offered flying lessons after joyride

A Chinese boy has been offered a rare opportunity to learn how to fly a plane, after being caught on a late-night joyride.

Source: BBC News - China | 23 Jul 2019 | 12:11 am(NZT)

Shares soar at 'China's Nasdaq' market debut

China's new Nasdaq-style board comes as China is trying to assert itself as a global technology leader.

Source: BBC News - China | 22 Jul 2019 | 10:12 pm(NZT)

The young flying high

China’s outbound tourism market during the summer vacation saw more tourists born after 2000, an new report said. The number of post-2000s tourists traveling abroad soared 346 percent year on year, according to the report by Chinese online travel platform Fliggy and Alipay. The post-1990s and post-1980s generations still account for the major share.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Underground research

The world’s deepest underground laboratory in southwest China’s Sichuan Province started construction on a major new physical research project on Saturday, according to the laboratory.The project is among the most important of China’s scientific and technological infrastructure push during the 13th Five-Year Plan period from 2016 to 2020, which aims to focus on cutting-edge research in particle physics and other fields. The 2,400-meter-deep laboratory, which was put into use in 2010, is the deepest underground laboratory in the world.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

International students

A total of 63,000 international students were funded by Chinese government scholarships in 2018, accounting for 12.8 percent of the total foreign students in China, the Ministry of Education said on Saturday. According to the ministry, 70 percent of the funded students were pursuing master or doctoral degrees. China has signed official education exchange agreements with more than 180 countries and territories.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

It is not always fun and games

The National Health Commission has released an expert report on gaming disorder prevention and treatment after the World Health Organization listed it as a new disease in late May.The average prevalence rate, or the proportion of people found to have a gaming disorder, remains at about 5 percent of the total population, according to the consensus, warning that men and the underage are more susceptible to the disorder.In line with the WHO definition, the consensus defined the gaming disorder as the uncontrollable and persistent playing of video and computer games to the extent that it takes precedence over other interests and daily activities, and continues and escalates despite dire consequences.Video game addiction impairs people’s physical and psychological health and social functioning.The medical condition is associated with inadequate social support or interpersonal communication, poor relationships with teachers and peers, inappropriate parenting, and absence of guardians, the consensus said.Stressing prevention as the key, the experts called for concerted efforts of family, schools and society in caring for the youth and raising public awareness.They also urged medical practitioners to stay prudent in diagnosis and treatment.China is home to the world’s largest Internet population totaling 829 million and the market scale of online games hit 248 billion yuan (US$36 billion) in 2018.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Tiangong-2 returns to Earth in flaming glory

After orbiting the Earth 16,209 times, it burned itself into ashes, flaming out in a dazzling display as its last gift to humanity.China’s space lab Tiangong-2 reentered the Earth’s atmosphere under control on Friday night, with a small amount of its debris falling into the predetermined safe sea area in the South Pacific, the China Manned Space Agency said.Tiangong-2’s controlled reentry into the atmosphere marks the successful completion of all the tasks in the space lab phase in China’s manned space program, said Zhou Jianping, chief designer of the program.“It’s hard to say goodbye to Tiangong-2 but considering reliability and safety-related factors, we have to drive it out of orbit,” said Zhu Zongpeng, chief designer of Tiangong-2 from the China Academy of Space Technology.“To let Tiangong-2 ‘retire’ by choice is to ensure the absolute safety of its departure,” Zhu said.“As the first to enter Tiangong-2, I’m happy that the space lab has successfully completed its tasks, though I’m also missing it since it was our home in space,” said astronaut Jing Haipeng, who spent his 50th birthday on Tiangong-2 on October 24, 2016.“My memory of the 30 days on Tiangong-2 with Chen Dong is still fresh. We conducted many scientific experiments such as raising silkworms and growing plants in space,” Jing said.“China is stepping up efforts to prepare for the construction of the space station. We are confident that a space station belonging to the Chinese people is coming soon,” he added.“The 30 days on Tiangong-2 were the happiest and most unforgettable experience in my life, and the most precious and valuable time to cherish,” said astronaut Chen Dong.“Tiangong-2 was the place to realize my space dream,” said Chen, adding that “China’s space station, a more powerful, advanced and comfortable home for astronauts, is awaiting us.”The space lab is the prelude to the construction of China’s space station, aiming to test the key technologies needed for the permanent space station, Zhou said.Tiangong-2, an improved version of Tiangong-1, is considered China’s first space lab. Launched on September 15, 2016, the space lab has worked in orbit over 1,000 days, much longer than its two-year designed lifespan.Comprising an experiment module and a resource module, the space lab has a total length of 10.4 meters, a maximum diameter of 3.35 meters and a takeoff weight of 8.6 tons.After its solar panels are unfolded, its wingspan was 18.4 meters.Key breakthroughsTiangong-2 docked with both the Shenzhou-11 manned spaceship and Tianzhou-1 cargo spacecraft.China made breakthroughs in a series of key technologies through the Tiangong-2 mission, such as medium-term space residence of astronauts and in-orbit propellant refueling, accumulating important experience for building and operating China’s future space station.More than 60 space science experiments and technological tests have been carried out on the space lab.For instance, the first-ever cold atom clock working in space was tested on Tiangong-2.The clock was so accurate that it would only lose one second every 30 million years.A device named POLAR installed atop Tiangong-2, which was jointly developed by Chinese and European scientists, has detected 55 gamma-ray bursts, the strongest explosions in the universe.China also tested a microsatellite, which was launched from Tiangong-2 and took high-resolution pictures of the connected space lab and Shenzhou-11.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)



Demand for imported goods is still strong

Chinese merchandise firms plan to scale up their imports as Chinese consumers’ demand for such products remains robust, an industrial survey showed.About 9.7 percent of the 945 retail and wholesale enterprise respondents said they would increase consumer product imports in the next year, 2.5 percentage points higher than those planning to decrease their imports, according to a survey by the Ministry of Commerce.Among the 1,059 surveyed consumers, 24.1 percent planned more purchases of imported products, with strong demand for food, maternal and infant products, cosmetics, watches and glasses, jewelry and passenger vehicles.Nearly 80 percent of consumer respondents had purchased imported consumer products at least once, which accounted for over 10 percent of the same-category purchases of 41.7 percent of the consumers.Brand is the top consideration when merchandise firms import consumer products, while safety also matters in food and maternal and infant products, and design in apparel and jewelry, the survey showed.The survey is part of the ministry’s efforts to help organize the second China International Import Expo in Shanghai in November.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

White paper on Xinjiang traces the history of the autonomous region

XINJIANG has long been an inseparable part of Chinese territory and has never been “East Turkistan,” according to a white paper issued by the State Council Information Office yesterday. Xinjiang was formally included in Chinese territory in the Han Dynasty, according to the white paper titled “Historical Matters Concerning Xinjiang.” From the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) to the middle and late Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), the vast areas both north and south of the Tianshan Mountains in Xinjiang were called the Western Regions. Later dynasties in the Central Plains kept closer or looser contact with the Western Regions, and the central authorities exercised tighter or slacker administration over Xinjiang, it said. “But all of these dynasties regarded the Western Regions as part of Chinese territory and exercised the right of jurisdiction over Xinjiang,” it said. China is a unified multi-ethnic country, and the various ethnic groups in Xinjiang have long been part of the Chinese nation. Throughout its long history, Xinjiang’s development has been closely related to that of China. The Turks were nomads who originated in the Altai Mountains in the middle of the 6th century. In the late 8th century, the nomadic Turks dissolved as their last khanate collapsed, according to the white paper. “They mixed with local tribes during their migration to Central and West Asia, but these newly formed peoples were fundamentally different from the ancient Turks. Ever since then, Turks have disappeared from China’s northern regions,” the white paper said. From the 18th century to the first half of the 19th century, as the West made a distinction between the various Turkic languages (branches of the Altaic languages), some foreign scholars and writers coined the term “Turkistan” to refer to the region south of the Tianshan Mountains and north of Afghanistan, which roughly covered the area from southern Xinjiang to Central Asia. They called the two areas on either side of the Pamirs “West Turkistan” and “East Turkistan,” it said. At the turn of the 20th century, as “Pan-Turkism” and “Pan-Islamism” made inroads into Xinjiang, separatists in and outside China politicized the geographical concept and manipulated its meaning, inciting all ethnic groups speaking Turkic languages and believing in Islam to join in creating the theocratic state of “East Turkistan,” it added. A political tool In more recent times, hostile forces in and outside China have tried to split China and break it apart by distorting history and facts. “The advocacy of this so-called state has become a political tool and program for separatists and anti-China forces attempting to split China,” the white paper said. The Uygur ethnic group came into being through a long process of migration and integration, the white paper said, adding that it is part of the Chinese nation. In Xinjiang, different cultures and religions coexist, and ethnic cultures have been fostered and developed in the embrace of the Chinese civilization. Islam is neither an indigenous nor the sole belief system of the Uygur people. It has taken root in the Chinese culture and developed soundly in China, the document said. Xinjiang has multiple religions, including Islam, Buddhism, Taoism, Protestantism, Catholicism, and the Eastern Orthodox Church. It has 24,800 venues for religious activities, including mosques, churches, Buddhist and Taoist temples, with 29,300 religious staff, according to the white paper. “Xinjiang always upholds equality for all religions, showing neither favoritism towards nor discrimination against any religion and allowing no religion to be superior to any other religion,” said the white paper. Believers and non-believers enjoy equal rights and obligations, and all law violators, whatever their social background, ethnicity, and religious belief, will be punished in accordance with the law.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Religious bodies slam US for criticism

CHINESE religious circles have expressed deep indignation and strongly condemned the defamation of China’s freedom of religious belief by some people and entities in the United States, who fabricated reports and held a conference on “promoting religious freedom.” Leaders of several national religious organizations called a meeting in Beijing on Friday to condemn the United States on making an issue of religion to attack China and express their solemn position. Noting that Chinese Christians have benefited from China’s policy of freedom of religious belief, a leader of the China Christian Council said the United States’ accusation against China — in disregard of facts and under the pretext of “religious freedom” — was inconceivable and outrageous. The United States has politicized religion and used religion as a pretext to attack the Communist Party of China and the Chinese government, which is a shameful act of blasphemy, the Christian leader said. A leader of the Islamic Association of China said the Chinese Islamic community is angered by what the United States has done. He said the acts exposed the United States’ double standards as the United States itself is facing a rise in racism. A leader of the Buddhist Association of China said over the past four decades the CPC and the Chinese government have made tremendous efforts in ensuring the freedom of religious belief and no one is in a better position than the more than 200 million religious believers in China to comment on that. The United States invited people engaging in anti-China activities to the conference on so-called promoting religious freedom, which exposed the ugliness of their political deals under the pretext of religion, the leader said. “Every religious believer in China is opposed to that.” Religious figures attending Friday’s meeting said they all agreed that only Chinese religious believers shall have the final say on whether China has the freedom of religious belief. They also urged relevant parties in the United States to stop their despicable farce to leave religion in peace.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Violence in Hong Kong condemned

THE government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region condemns violent acts at the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the HKSAR yesterday, a spokesperson of the HKSAR government said. Some protesters marched to the Liaison Office yesterday after a public procession finished at around 4:30pm, and “maliciously” surrounded and tried to storm the office, some even smeared the Chinese national emblem. The spokesperson said the HKSAR government will strictly deal with it and investigate in accordance with the law, adding the act was a “public defiance of China’s national sovereignty.” “This has posed threats to HKSAR’s public security and ‘one country, two systems’ policy and the Hong Kong society shall not accept it,” the spokesperson said. More than 300,000 Hong Kong residents braved rains for rallies on Saturday afternoon to voice their strong opposition to violence. They also called for maintaining rule of law and safeguarding peace and stability in Hong Kong.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 22 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Hong Kong protests: graffiti, tear gas and riot police

The BBC's Stephen McDonell is amid the pro-democracy protesters as tear gas is fired.

Source: BBC News - China | 22 Jul 2019 | 2:12 am(NZT)

Pro-China Hong Kong protester calls BBC reporter 'fake news' during broadcast

BBC China correspondent Stephen McDonell was interrupted on air by pro-Beijing protesters in Hong Kong.

Source: BBC News - China | 21 Jul 2019 | 3:03 am(NZT)

Hong Kong actor Simon Yam stabbed on stage in China

The 64-year-old was attacked while speaking at a promotional event in the city of Zhongshan.

Source: BBC News - China | 20 Jul 2019 | 6:56 pm(NZT)

‘Graffiti villages’ bring back life for Taiwan elderly

Nestled in the mist-covered foothills of Taiwan’s central mountain range, Ruan Chiao Village is virtually devoid of young people, but artist Wu Tsun-hsien is coaxing the Instagram generation back by transforming local homes into a canvas of color.Dipping his brush into a tin of beige emulsion, he carefully applies new layers of paint to his latest production — a vibrant rural scene depicting farmers in traditional weave hats tending to a flock of animals.Behind him an elderly villager shuffles his way down the main street, which is plastered with Wu’s colorful paintings.“This village is full of old people,” the 55-year-old laments, explaining how the vast majority of youngsters — including his own children — have moved to the city, leaving elderly residents listless and lonely.But paintings have started to bring young visitors — always keen for a selfie in a photo-friendly location — back.“These drawings attracted many tourists to come visit. The old people who were left here are no longer so bored. This was my biggest gain,” he beams.Wu is not alone in this.There are now some half a dozen so-called “graffiti villages” in Taiwan that have been festooned with artwork in a bid to inject some life into rural places that have been emptied of its young.Taiwan’s 23 million population is rapidly aging. The birth rate has plummeted — only 180,000 children were born last year, an eight-year low.The Wu family has experienced this flight first hand.The ancestral home is occupied by his wife’s father, 81, and mother, 72, who still work a few plots of land in the hills above the village growing vegetables.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 19 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

AI model offers reliable cervical cancer detection

Using artificial intelligence technologies, Chinese researchers have developed a rapid and accurate screening model to diagnose cervical cancer, a common and fatal disease in women.Cervical cancer, caused by the human papilloma virus, is the fourth most frequent cancer in women worldwide, with an estimated 570,000 new cases reported and 311,000 deaths from the disease in 2018, according to the World Health Organization.In China, the incidence and death rates of cervical cancer are also high, with 130,000 new cases reported last year. Most are caused by delayed checks.The current method to detect abnormal cervical cells is cytology-based screening, known as the Pap test. It is often done during a pelvic examination which allows the health-care professional to have a clear view of the cervix and upper vagina by a speculum and take a sample of cervical cells.Under a microscopeBased on more than 200,000 pathological images selected from over 43.5 million cervical screening samples, experts from KingMed Diagnostics, a Guangzhou-based medical diagnostic testing company, along with computer engineers from Huawei Cloud, a subsidiary of the Chinese tech giant Huawei, over one year developed an AI-assisted screening model, which can diagnose the disease with an accuracy of over 99 percent, while costing only one-tenth of the examination time performed by pathologists.“Pathologists spend an average of six minutes in examining a cervical screening sample under a microscope, while the AI model just needs 36 seconds per case,” said Luo Pifu, director of the KingMed’s pathological department and lead researcher of the program.Cervical cancer can often be detected early, and sometimes even prevented entirely, by having regular screenings. More than 350 million Chinese women aged 30 to 65 need cervical cancer checkups every three to five years, but the country still lacks the screening capacity to meet the demand.National Health Commission data shows that China offered free cervical cancer checks to 85 million rural women from 2009 to 2018, to promote screening in impoverished areas.In addition, a report last year by state television broadcaster CCTV shows that China currently has about 10,000 licensed pathologists but still requires at least a further 90,000.The talent shortage has limited the promotion of cervical cancer screening, according to Li Yinghua, chief information officer of KingMed Diagnostics.The company expects the AI-assisted screening to help offset the shortage of well-trained pathologists, as well as expand the scope of early examination of cervical cancer in China.In 2018, KingMed and Huawei agreed to cooperate in building an AI model for cervical cancer screening. Compared with AI models using CT or MRI images, the AI-assisted screening model for pathology is more complicated, as pathological images are richer in color, larger in size, and require higher precision so that doctors can see the abnormality of cells, said Luo.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 19 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Firefighters to the rescue as river waters swell amid rains

Firefighters across the country had rescued 14,165 people and evacuated 44,630 people stranded in floods by 3pm on Wednesday, the Ministry of Emergency Management said yesterday.The country has dispatched a total of 28,190 firefighters and 5,822 units of firefighting trucks and boats in 2,725 rescue missions for disasters, including floods, landslides and typhoons, it added.To better cope with potential disasters, the Office of State Flood Control and Drought Relief Headquarters and the ministry launched joint drills to examine rescue teams’ capability on emergency response and cross-region rescues.More than 7,000 firefighters, 670 boats and over 200,000 pieces of equipment have been spot-checked to ensure safety.Yesterday, the National Meteorological Center continued to issue a blue alert for typhoon Danas in China’s southeast.Meanwhile, water levels in many rivers in east and west China have been rising amid continuous downpours.In southwest Sichuan Province, heavy rainfall in the north since Tuesday has caused flash floods and geological disasters in a variety of localities.The water in the local Qujiang River, a tributary of the major Jialing River, has been rising, causing flooding in many townships. Some buildings have been inundated.In east Anhui Province, water in the Yangtze, China’s longest river, has been rising, with water exceeding warning levels at several hydrological stations.China has seen a record number of rivers being flooded since this year’s high-water season began, according to the Ministry of Water Resources.Hundreds of rivers across the country have reported water exceeding alarm levels, over 80 percent more than the average annual number of such rivers registered since 1998 when severe floods hit China. The water level of Poyang Lake, China’s largest freshwater lake, in east Jiangxi Province, continues to rise, having recently exceeded the warning level, local authorities said yesterday.At 8am yesterday, water at the Xingzi hydrological station at the lake recorded 20.65 meters, measuring 1.65 meters above the warning level.At the same time, the Hukou hydrological station saw the water level reach 20.44 meters which is 0.94 meters above the warning level, according to the provincial water resources department.As of Tuesday, 1,298km-long levees along Poyang Lake and the Yangtze River saw the water exceed warning levels. Jiangxi has deployed more than 39,000 personnel to patrol along the dykes and arranged 190 sets of mechanical equipment for fighting floods.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 19 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Floods devastate south

The lives of more than 810,000 residents in south China’s Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region have been affected by heavy rainfall that began on Friday, the local emergency management department said.The department said a total of 816,523 people were affected, including two deaths as of 5pm yesterday. As the rain ended last night, nearly 65,000 hectares of crops had been destroyed, and homes of nearly 2,000 households collapsed or damaged, leading to a direct economic loss of 1.4 billion yuan (US$208 million).

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Mine museum showcases earth’s riches

The mining site of Koktokay has become a new attraction that tourists should not miss when visiting northwest China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.Known as “the natural geological museum,” the mining site in Koktokay Township in the county of Fuyun has more than 80 kinds of minerals, nearly half of the 170-plus types known in China. The mining site also has one of the largest pits in the world, which is more than 200 meters deep.The minerals and rare metals produced at the mining site played a crucial role in the development of the country’s aerospace, national defense and other industries.However, as the mineral resources at the mine became depleted by the end of the 1990s, the mine had to overcome the predicament of shrinking profit and increasing pollution.Developing tourism based on the mine has become an option. The local government invested over 3.7 billion yuan (US$540 million) in restoring vegetation, building roads and other projects involving the improvement of the environment.The government also shut down an electrolytic aluminium plant and others with high pollution and built cultural industry parks on the sites of the plants to attract culture and tourism companies.The efforts proved to be a success. About 1.6 million tourists visited Fuyun County in 2015 and half of them visited Koktokay.Tourists can experience a maze-like world of various minerals such as quartz and mica in an 800-meter-long mine tunnel, where the temperature is zero degrees Celsius all year.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Opening the doors for foreign talent

China yesterday announced 12 measures to make immigration and entry-exit applications easier and more convenient for certain foreigners.The Ministry of Public Security said the measures were part of the first batch of 60 special policies for promoting economic and social development and benefiting the public and enterprises.From August 1, the country will ease the permanent residence application for more high-level foreign talent, including foreigners with doctorates and those who have made significant contributions to the country.Foreign spouses and children of qualified foreigners can also join the application simultaneously, according to the MPS.To improve the country’s business environment, long-term visas and residence permits will be issued to foreigners doing business, working or studying in China.Those who are invited by universities, scientific research institutes and renowned enterprises for technology cooperations will be able to get visas or residence permits valid for two to five years.In recent years, China has issued 133,000 visas and residence permits to foreign entrepreneurs, investors, and technical and management specialists, said Chen Bin, an official from the National Immigration Administration, at a press conference yesterday in Beijing.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Classes downsized

China aims to eliminate “super-sized” classes that accommodate more than 66 students in primary and middle schools nationwide by the end of 2020, according to a guideline released yesterday. The proportion of “large-sized” classes with over 56 students will be kept to no more than 5 percent by 2020, said the document, jointly issued by the Ministry of Education, the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Finance.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Students go back to the basics: pen, paper

Over this year’s summer vacation, many Chinese pupils are ditching app-based homework and picking up pens and paper to preserve their eyesight.Zhu Ting, a resident of Hefei, capital of eastern Anhui Province, supervised her 9-year-old son while he completed his homework including writing and math by hand.Her boy’s teachers were banned from assigning summer homework to be completed on mobile apps.“But it was not always like this,” Zhu said.When her son was in first grade, she installed various apps on her phone, such as English dubbing, math operation and essay writing. “However, my kid was addicted to the screen, which affected his eyesight,” she said.Educational apps have caught on among Chinese schools and families in recent years.In April 2018, the number of monthly active users of educational apps in China exceeded 220 million. Among them, users aged between 6 and 18 reached 146 million, up 41 percent year on year, according to a report published by QuestMobile, a leading big data service provider.However, app-based homework is a double-edged sword — it can assist students in learning, but excessive screen time and a lack of outdoor activities can cause myopia.China is combating myopia among children and teenagers as the disease has become severe in recent years. More than half of Chinese children and teenagers suffered from myopia in 2018, figures from the National Health Commission show.In February, eastern China’s Zhejiang Province issued a draft regulation to ban app-based homework assignments, limit the use of electronic devices to 30 percent of total teaching time and encourage the issuing of paper homework to be completed by hand.Zhejiang is among a bevy of Chinese provinces taking measures to help students reduce reliance on app-based homework to tackle vision problems.In eastern Fujian Province, the local government requires schools to strictly control the assignment of homework through educational apps. The daily time of doing electronic homework for junior and senior middle school students should be no more than 20 minutes.Xiong Bingqi, vice president of 21st Century Education Research Institute, a leading educational think tank, said limiting the amount and time of app-based homework is of great significance to alleviating teenagers’ myopia.He said schools and teachers should be given more liberty to guide students to use apps and online resources based on different needs of disciplines and students’ ages.“We need to update our knowledge on online education and evaluate its actual effect in a professional way to help teachers and parents make choices,” said Wang Yi, a family education counselor.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Beijing going 5G

Beijing has built 5,285 5G base stations across the city as of the end of June, the municipal telecom authorities said yesterday. Constructed by the country’s three major carriers, the 5G base stations are in the city’s core urban zones, the new airport, the horticultural expo and venues for the 2022 Winter Olympics. The 5G technology will be epoch-making in a new era of the Internet of Everything and of great strategic significance for the digital economy, said Wang Hui, deputy head of the Beijing Communications Administration.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Tariffs obstacles to talks

CHINA has always advocated resolving economic and trade issues with the United States through dialogue and consultations and has always been sincere in such consultations, the foreign ministry spokesperson said. “If the United States were to impose new tariffs, it would undoubtedly create obstacles to bilateral trade consultations and make the road to an agreement more lengthy,” spokesperson Geng Shuang said. US President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that there was a long way to go with China on trade and threatened to impose tariffs on another US$325 billion of Chinese goods. “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step,” Geng quoted a Chinese proverb, adding one only needs to take the first step and move forward consistently before he would reach his destination. He called on the United States to show determination and perseverance, and work with China to achieve a mutually beneficial agreement through joint efforts on the basis of mutual respect and equal treatment.

Source: Shanghai Daily: Nation | 18 Jul 2019 | 4:05 am(NZT)

Mulan: Disney aims to win over China with second take on the legend

No singing and no dragons, but Disney's new take on the legend makes a play for Chinese audiences.

Source: BBC News - China | 11 Jul 2019 | 11:36 am(NZT)

Yang Hengjun: The Australian writer held by China for six months

Blogger Yang Hengjun has not been heard from since being arrested for "endangering national security".

Source: BBC News - China | 10 Jul 2019 | 3:31 am(NZT)

Carrie Lam: 'Hong Kong extradition bill is dead'

Hong Kong's leader said there is "no such plan" for the controversial extradition bill.

Source: BBC News - China | 9 Jul 2019 | 4:16 pm(NZT)

The Chinese city enraged by plans to burn its rubbish

Wuhan joins a list of Chinese cities getting angry over environmental issues.

Source: BBC News - China | 9 Jul 2019 | 4:36 am(NZT)

Hong Kong extradition protests: Police and protesters clash

BBC China correspondent Robin Brant reports from Hong Kong amid another day of protests.

Source: BBC News - China | 8 Jul 2019 | 10:13 am(NZT)










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