Winter Games: 1,000 days to gontdown activity unfolds in Be

With 1,000 days to go before the 2022 Winter Olympics, pr

eparations are well underway for a successful and sustainable event.

Built for the 2008 Summer Games, Olympic Park in Beijing’s north

ern downtown area entered the spotlight again on Friday as the country began its cou

ntdown. The 2022 Winter Olympics, will be held in Beijing and co-host Zhangjiakou in adjacent Hebei province.

As the symbolic “1,000” flashed on a digital clock on the park’s Lin

glong Tower, a broadcasting facility for the 2008 Games, expectations were heig

htened for the winter sports extravaganza, which will run from Feb 4 to 20 in 2022. Three zones will feature athl

etic events — downtown Beijing, the city’s northwest Yanqing district and Zhangjiakou’s mountain district Chongli.

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Boosting rural areas will help solve dilemmas of ove

rcrowding and rampant construction plaguing cities, and the development of cities will also offer unique ways to bring about rural revitalization,” Chen said.

“As restrictions on hukou will gradually be removed, cities need to be well-prepared to offer

accommodation and employment opportunities, and allow children of migrant workers to have equal access to education,” Chen added.

China has made steady progress in urbanization, as the ranks of permanent urban r

esidents stood at 831 million at the end of 2018, up 17.9 million from the previous year, said the National Bureau of Statistics.

Last month, the National Development and Reform Commission said it

plans to increase the urbanization rate by at least 1 percentage point by the end of this year.

Shen Chi, vice-director of the China Center for Urban Development, said the government’s new

plan will help foster high-quality and sustainable economic development across the nation.

“Relaxing the hukou policy will be a key step in promoting the free flow of labor across

the nation,” Shen said. “A systematic consideration and arrangement of the integratio

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Probe begins after Boeings off runway into Florida river

A team of 16 federal investigators was traveling to Jacksonville, Florid

a on Saturday after a Boeing jetliner with 143 people on board slid off a runway into a sha

llow river while trying to land at a military base during a thunderstorm, injuring 21 people.

The Boeing 737-800 chartered by the US military was arriving from Na

val Station Guantanamo Bay in Cuba with 136 passengers and seven crew members when it slid

into the St. Johns river at the end of the runway at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, authorities said.

No one was badly hurt and the 21 people taken to a hospital w

ere listed in good condition, the local sheriff’s office said.

The National Transportation Safety Board said on Twitter th

at 16 investigators were arriving in Jacksonville on Saturday.

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He described the Belt and Road as a grand and peace

ful initiative, and credited the initiative for connecting countries from different regions, with different nationalities and cultures.

The BRI will provide a strong impetus for global economic growth and prosperity, he added.

Switzerland supports the BRI and commits to promoting the initiative in Europe, Maurer said.

He added that the country hopes to deepen bilateral cooperation in trade, investment and innovation with the initiative’s framework.

China and Portugal signed a series of cooperation documents on Monday — includin

g a framework agreement on third-party market cooperation — to strengthen their bilateral ties.

President Xi Jinping and Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sou

sa witnessed the signing of the documents in the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

In talks with Rebelo de Sousa, Xi said China and Portugal are important strategic partn

rs for each other, with great convergence in their interests and strong complementary aspects in their economies.

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He said seeing is believing and he welcomes the stude

nts to visit China in the future.Kendra Le, a Niles North freshman, was thrilled about Xi’s response letter, the Chicago Tribune reported.

“I was surprised, very surprised,” Le was quoted in the report as say

ing. “It was an honor to receive a letter from him. It was really nice getting a letter from him.”

The report also said that Zhao Jian, the Chinese consul general in Chicago, personally

delivered the letter to a gathering of students enrolled in Chinese classes at Niles North on April 3.

Serena Meyers, a Niles North senior taking her first year of Chinese after thr

ee terms of Spanish, was not only happy to receive the response, but also ple

ased at how the Chinese leader made an effort to answer the questions her classmates posed.

“I was absolutely surprised,” she told the Chicago Tribune. “He has a lot to do and it was a

n honor he wrote back to us.”The Niles North High School began offering Mandarin courses in 2008.

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Fiscal spending can directly influence fixed-asset inves

tment, and it could also leverage on more bank lending and attract private funds to increase investment, said Xu.

In the meantime, allowing retail access to local government bonds will help diversify the

investor base and increase market liquidity, said Amanda Du, an analyst at Moody’s Investors Service.

The analyst expected access for retail investors to widen to encompass all local government bonds in 2020.

hina’s economy grew at a faster-than-expected 6.4 percent year-on-year in the first qua

rter, according to data released by the National Bureau of Statistics on Wednesday.

The growth was unchanged from that registered in the fourth quarter of last year.

The country’s industrial output posted steady growth in the same period, up by 6.5 percent

year-on-year, compared with 5.7 percent in the previous quarter, official data showed.

Fixed-asset investment growth was 6.3 percent in the first quarte

r, compared with 6.1 percent in the first two months, according to the NBS.

Retail sales increased by 8.3 percent year-on-year in the same pe

riod, compared with 8.2 percent in the first two months, the data showed.

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Employees have been working according to the che

edule in some companies, including some well-known internet enterprises. Earlier this year, Youzan, an e-commerce compa

ny based in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, triggered controversy by introducing the “996” schedule in its annua

l meeting. The move even prompted the labor authorities to conduct an investigation against Youzan.

Workers have been working overtime in many industries for yea

rs. But now, many programmers in internet companies are opposing the “996” schedu

le because the extra work does not come with any compensation or bonus. To reduce the labor cost, many high-tech and int

ernet companies are laying off workers. That means, there are fewer people left to shoulder the extra work. Tha

t’s a reason why the overloaded IT programmers have now burst out with complaints.

Alibaba chairman Jack Ma has said that only by working harder

and longer than others can an employee achieve success in life. He h

as also said that those who want to join Alibaba should be prepared to work for 12-hour work a day. This not only goe

s against the Labor Law but also violates the rights and interests of the employers, and could harm their health.

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Shanghai aims to rev up car sales with trade-in subsidies

The city of Shanghai has become the first local government to answer the call of the central gove

rnment to promote automobile consumption by providing subsidies, since 10 mi

nistries and commissions of the country released six major methods of promoting car sales in January.

The official WeChat account of the Shanghai Municipal Government announced yesterday it will launch a car trade-i

n program, encouraging car owners to trade in their vehicles for new gas-powered cars complying with State-VI emi

ssions standards or new energy vehicles, according to a report by the 21st Century Business Herald.

The government will provide a subsidy of 10,000 yuan ($1,489) for a trade-in gas-powered

vehicle and 15,000 yuan for a trade-in new energy vehicle, the announcement said.

China’s automobile market saw a sales decline in 2018 for the first time

in 28 years, with passenger vehicle sales slumping for 10 consecutive months from last y

ear to March, according to the China Passenger Car Association. As the central government halved subsidies for new energy

vehicles this year, the promotion of car consumption depends more on local governments and enterprises.

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IMF upbeat on China’s 2019 growth in Zhuhai, Guangdong

The International Monetary Fund said on Tuesday that it expects China’s economy to grow 6.3 percent in 2019-up 0.1 perce

ntage point from its prediction in January. Analysts said the world’s second-large

st economy is set to remain stable as authorities continue to implement supportive policies.

The latest World Economic Outlook, released at the start of the sp

ring meetings of the IMF and the World Bank in Washington, also predicted the United States e

conomy would grow 2.3 percent this year, 0.2 percentage point lower than the IMF’s earlier forecast.

The outlook for China falls within the range of the country’s targeted goal of securing between 6 p

ercent and 6.5 percent growth for this year, and is very close to that of Chinese researchers.

On April 1, Zhang Ping, a researcher at the Institute of Economics of the Chinese Acad

emy of Social Sciences, said China’s GDP growth should remain at 6.2 percent in the fir

st half, and average 6.3 percent for the whole year, thanks to incentives including tax and fee cuts.

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The panda house at the Copenhagen Zoo, designed by

 Danish architectural firm Bjarke Ingels Group, is inspired by the Chinese yin and yang symbol. The facility allows the male and fe

male pandas to live apart most of the year, yet in proximity and with easy access to a common area when the female is in heat.

Copenhagen Zoo CEO Jorgen Nielsen hailed the impending

arrival of the two pandas as one of the biggest events in the zoo’s 160-year history.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative, proposed by President Xi Jin

ping nearly six years ago, has made practical progress, with 125 countries and 29 inter

national organizations having signed 173 cooperation agreements under the initiative framework as of March 27.

Under the initiative’s five cooperation priorities of policy coordination, facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, finan

cial integration and people-to-people bond, there are a batch of projects, such as transportation const

ruction and industrial infrastructure, in full swing or already having yielded fruitful results.

Here are some of the amazing projects achieved worldwide under the initiative.

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