MonitorsPublished on Nov 21, 2016
Pakistan, Russia & China to hold consultations on Afghanistan to explore ways reconcile & restore peace in war-torn country & other weekly roundsups
China Weekly Report | Volume VI; Issue 39 | Pakistan, China, Russia to hold talks on Afghanistan next month


Pakistan, China, Russia to hold talks on Afghanistan next month

Pakistan said on Novermber 11 that Pakistan, Russia and China will hold consultations on Afghanistan in December to explore ways to reach reconciliation and restore peace in the war-torn country.  "We attach high importance to all initiatives aimed at bringing peace and stability in Afghanistan and the region at large," Foreign Ministry spokesman Nafees Zakaria said.  The trilateral talks have assumed importance at a time when there is no let-up in the violence in Afghanistan in spite of the advent of winter. "Under the said trilateral meeting, a working level meeting has already taken place. The deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan has raised concerns about the spillover effect due to the presence of NSAs (non-state actors) and other elements there," the spokesman said at his weekly briefing.He said Pakistan will also attend an upcoming meeting of the Heart of Asia in India and Foreign Affairs Adviser to Prime Minister Sartaj Aziz is likely to represent the country in the meeting. Source: Global Times

China urges Mongolia to scrap Dalai Lama visit

China is strongly urging its northern neighbour Mongolia to stick to its commitment to Tibet-related issues for maintaining the sound development of bilateral ties. Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang reiterated that the 14th Dalai Lama is a political refugee who has long been engaged in activities to split China and alienate Tibet from China in the name of religion. He noted China firmly opposes visits by the Dalai Lama to any foreign country. "China resolutely opposes the Dalai Lama visiting any country to carry out anti-China separatist activities in any name or in any capacity. We also stand firmly against all forms of contacts between officials from any country and the Dalai Lama. We strongly demand that Mongolia, for the purpose of maintaining the general picture of a sound and steady development of bilateral ties, earnestly stick to its commitment on Tibet-related issues, do not allow the visit by the Dalai Lama and do not provide any form of support and convenience to the group of the Dalai Lama." Source: Global Times

Chinese ship opens new international trade route via Pakistani port

Pakistan’s top civil and military leaders travelled to the country’s southwest on November 12 to open a new international trade route by seeing off a Chinese ship that’s exporting goods to the Middle East and Africa from the newly built Gwadar port. The first convoy of Chinese trucks carrying goods for sale abroad arrived in Pakistan amid tight security using a road linking Gwadar to China’s northwestern Xinjiang region, the government said in a statement. The newly built Gwadar port will be used for international trade. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said Pakistan would provide the best possible security to foreign investors to enable them to use the Chinese-funded port for international trade. Amid security concerns for foreign workers, the Pakistani army has created a special force to guard the new trade routes and the port, which is located in insurgency-wracked Baluchistan province where an overnight blast at a shrine killed nearly 50 people. China is building a network of roads and power plants under a project known as the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, which is expected to absorb US$46 billion in Chinese investment in the coming decades. Source: South China Morning Post


China's top justice for international cooperation on cyberspace rule-of-law

China's top justice on November 17 called for international cooperation on intelligent courts and rule of law in cyberspace governance. Zhou Qiang, president of the Supreme People's Court was addressing the third World Internet Conference (WIC) in Wuzhen, Zhejiang Province. Zhou said IT has raised the quality and efficiency of trials, reinforcing social equality and justice in general. Countries need to share their best practices in IT in courts, Zhou said. Rule of law in cyberspace will ensure the cyber sphere is safe, orderly and accessible to all, Zhou added. The WIC, running from Nov 16 to Nov 18 this year, is an annual meeting of the world's tech firm bosses, academics, and government officials to discuss current Internet trends. Source: China Daily

Government takes pollution battle up a notch

China is making progress in battling air pollution, but the frequent choking smog hitting vast regions in recent weeks requires further control, a senior environmental official said on Friday. To that end, the central government has listed new binding targets in the national environment road map for the next five years. The 338 cities under regular monitoring have had more days of good air quality - 81.4 percent of days in the first 10 months - a year-on-year increase of 3.6 percent, and have seen a drop in the concentration of major air pollutants, Zhao Yingmin, vice-minister of environmental protection, said at a news conference in Beijing on Friday. However, the authorities also noted that air pollution is still at a severe level, and in some regions air quality had worsened, the vice-minister said. Inspectors sent by the central government recently found air quality in Xinxiang, Henan province, had deteriorated, with its reading of PM2.5 - small particles that can harm the lungs - having increased by 16 percent in 2015 over the year before. Source: China Daily


Nation can reach GDP target

Given the positive signs in data released by Chinese authorities on November 14, the country is set to achieve its annual GDP goal, but uncertainties remain, an official said. Economic growth maintained momentum in October, driven by rising industrial output and higher corporate profits. China's industrial output increased 6.1 percent year-on-year in October, and enterprises with annual revenues above 20 million yuan ($3 million) have seen their profits steadily grow, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said in announcing the figures. The industrial structure has also improved further. Other positive signs included steady growth in fixed-assets investment and an unemployment rate below 5 percent in major cities, according to NBS spokesman Mao Shengyong . However, uncertainties remain because of the complicated domestic and international macroeconomic situations, and the basis for a full economic recovery has not yet solidified. Considering the solid economic performance of the previous three quarters, China is expected to reach its annual GDP growth target of more than 6.5 percent for this year, Mao said. Source: Global Times

Target set for steel overcapacity-cutting for 2020

China will achieve major progress in the steel sector's structural overhaul by 2020 and "fundamentally bail out" the industry, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said on November 14. China plans to reduce crude steel output by 100 million tons to 150 million tons by 2020 and ease the uneven supply-demand situation in the sector, according to the ministry's 2016-20 plan on upgrading the industry. The whole sector will be modernised and its energy consumption and emissions will be within the national standards by 2020, said the plan. The ministry stressed the central government's resolve to continue to shed unnecessary production capacity in the steel sector, and underscored that it will not allow the addition of new steel capacity. It said any investment that would increase steel capacity should stop. Intelligent and green manufacturing in the steel sector will be encouraged, as well as mergers and acquisitions, according to the plan. Source: Xinhua

China, Peru sign 2 billion USD worth of purchasing agreements amid APEC fever

Business and enterprise representatives from China and Peru signed purchasing agreements worth 2 billion U.S. dollars on November 14 in Lima, as the 2016 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders' Week kicked off in the capital city. The agreements involved light industry, textiles, agricultural products, medicine, metals and minerals. Over 100 government officials and entrepreneurs attended the signing ceremony. "Chinese-Peruvian trade has achieved growth and progress against the sophisticated and adverse situation of the world," Zhu Yong, a senior official from the Commerce Ministry of China, said at the ceremony. China has become Peru's largest trade partner and largest export destination in the world, while Peru has jumped to be China's third largest trade partner in Latin America. The two sides are expected to strengthen and deepen their ties through sharing development opportunities, optimising trade structure and expanding trade volumes, said the officials attending the signing ceremony. Source: Xinhua


China successfully develops world-class high field magnet

Chinese scientists announced on November 14 they have created a world-class steady-state magnetic field, whose intensity reached 400,000 gauss, or 40 tesla, second only to that of the United States. After eight years of research, the Chinese Academy of Sciences' Hefei institute of physical science has built the hybrid magnet composed of a 30-tesla magnet nested in a 10-tesla superconducting magnet. Developed by the institute's magnet science and technology center in Hefei, capital of East China's Anhui province, the device generated a 40-tesla steady-state magnetic field on Sunday. It is a significant milestone for China's high field magnet technology, said the institute. Currently, a US steady-state magnet device can generate a 45 tesla field, the worlds strongest. Source: Xinhua, November

Chinese first to test CRISPR gene editing in humans

Chinese scientists are the first to inject a person with genes edited with the CRISPR-Cas9 method. The breakthrough could be a “biomedical Sputnik,” Nature News reports, referring to the Soviet Sputnik satellite that many say sparked the space race between the Soviet Union and the United States. Oncologist Lu You at Sichuan University in Chengdu, China, led a team that inserted edited cells into a patient with aggressive lung cancer during a clinical trial. The details are not being released to preserve the patient’s privacy, but Lu said the trial “went smoothly,” the report said. Experts say the CRISPR method is an easier and quicker form of genetic modification, allowing researchers to replace bits of genetic code with a kind of speed and precision unseen in other forms of genetic modification. Source: South China Morning Post


Regina Ip, “For restless Hong Kong, revolt against Beijing is futile”, South China Morning Post, November 19, 2016 Kerry Brown and Sheng Keyi, “China in the 21st century: Confucianist outside, confused inside”, South China Morning Post, November 19, 2016 Rudroneel Ghosh, “Pax Sinica: Does China have a civilisational ideal for the world?”, The Times of India, November 18, 2016 Jingan Zeng, “With Trump's Election, Time for China to Save the World”, The Diplomat, November 18, 2016 Hu Weijia, ‘Successes of the CPEC serve as a model for potential of China’s Belt and Road initiative’ Global Times, November 14, 2016 Growth shows recovery on track for 2016’, China Daily, November 2016 Heiko Khoo, “The Internet and social development in China”, Xinhua, November 16, 2016  
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