Chinese military to build modern command headquarters







>>  China warns U.S. against judicial interference

By Hao Yalin

China on Thursday of December 25 rebuffed the U.S. demands to release Liu Xiaobo and warned the country not to infringe upon its judicial sovereignty and independence.

“We advise the U.S. to reflect on and correct its own violations of human rights, instead of interfering in other countries’ domestic affairs and judicial sovereignty and independence in the name of human rights,” Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.

Hua was commenting on U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry’s Wednesday press statement that voiced concern over China’s human rights.

Hua added that China was governed by rule of law, and its judicial authorities tried cases in accordance with the country’s laws.







>>  Germany’s Chinese restaurants become hot spots at Christmas time

By Lan Xi

To have authentic Chinese family meals in a Chinese restaurant has become the top item on the to-do-list for many Germans during the current Christmas season.

Near the Alexanderplatz in Berlin’s downtown area sits the Chinese restaurant Ming Dynasty, one of nearly 500 Chinese restaurants in Berlin. It was almost packed and all the waiters were having their hands full at lunchtime on Thursday of December 25.

Many German people take such a traditional Chinese meal on Christmas Day as a grand family event on a yearly basis considering the relatively high prices.

“Our restaurant enjoys a rather high position in German people’s eyes. They always choose to come to us for the celebration of important festivals,” Chen Yuhua, the owner of Ming Dynasty restaurant said.

Fuqifeipian, sliced beef and ox tongue in chilli sauce, fish fillets in hot chili oil, twice-cooked pork are most popular among German diners.

However, the most frequently ordered dish on Christmas Day is Beijing roast duck.

According to German tradition, roasted goose is a must for each and every family on Christmas Eve. Now, things have changed. A roasted duck becomes a good alternative.

On this Christmas Eve, all the Beijing roast ducks were completely sold out.

The seats were overbooked long ahead of Christmas Day. German families with seniors and kids are seen everywhere in the restaurant enjoying Chinese food.

For many of them, celebrating the Christmas here has become a regular event every year.

“I like the roast duck here very much. Our family are regular customers. We came here last year and the year before last. The taste is really good,” a Berlin diner said. “We have tried other Chinese restaurants in Berlin, Ming Dynasty Restaurant is one of the best.”

According to Chen, Germans speak highly of traditional Chinese food culture. Having meals in Chinese restaurants has become an integral part of their daily life.







>>  Crew members of grounded Chinese fishing boat return home from Japan

By Yan Lei

Twenty-three crew members aboard a Chinese fishing boat that was grounded near Japan’s Shimane Prefecture a week ago left Osaka for China by air on Thursday afternoon of December 25.

In the early morning of Dec. 18, a 255-ton fishing boat JIN HAI 805 from China’s Zhejiang province hit rocks and was grounded near Shimane Prefecture when taking refuge from storms there.

Twenty-three out of the 25 crew members on board were rescued, among whom three were injured badly. The body of one missing crew member was found several days after the incident, while the other is still unaccounted for.

After the incident, the Chinese Consulate-General in Osaka immediately launched consular protection mechanism and sent diplomats to the scene to provide help. The rescued crew members took bus to Kansai International Airport from Shimane Prefecture on Thursday and left for China by air.







>>  Chinese Embassy in Myanmar hopes Letpadaung project incident can be handled properly

Chinese Embassy in Myanmar on Thursday of December 25 said the Letpadaung mining project incident was an unfortunate event, hoping that it can be handled properly.

According to media report, Myanmar villagers protesting against the Letpadaung mining project collided with the local police on Monday. One local woman was killed and many others injured.

The Chinese Embassy, in a statement posted on its facebook, made its concern and regret over the injuries and death, and also noted that in the turmoil the Chinese workers who are peacefully implementing the project have been attacked.

The embassy said the Letpadaung mining project is an important joint project between China and Myanmar, and voiced support for the project to be implemented in a peaceful and secure manner, while opposing any kind of violence.

The embassy said that China and Myanmar are traditional neighbors and mutually beneficial co-operation meets the common interests of both sides.

The embassy also stressed that the Chinese government consistently requires overseas Chinese enterprises to abide by the laws and regulations in the host countries, while carrying out social responsibility and obligations and focusing on environment protection.







>>  China vows to boost ties with Vietnam along correct path

By Wang Bo

China’s top political advisor Yu Zhengsheng vowed in Hanoi on Thursday of December 25 to enhance high-level exchanges with Vietnam and promote bilateral ties along a correct path.

Yu, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, made the remarks while meeting with Le Hong Anh, a Politburo member and standing secretary of the Secretariat of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) Central Committee.

Yu arrived in Hanoi earlier on Thursday for a three-day official visit to Vietnam.He spoke positively of Le Hong Anh’s latest visit to China in August as special envoy of the CPV Central Committee General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong, adding the visit has contributed significantly to the improvement of China- Vietnam ties.

High-level exchanges between the two ruling parties had played a leading role in the development of bilateral relations, Yu said.

“My current visit to Vietnam, commissioned by the CPC Central Committee and General Secretary Xi Jinping, aims to enhance mutual trust, build consensus and boost progress of China-Vietnam relations in a correct path,” he said.

China is willing to enhance communication with Vietnam, and deal with bilateral ties from a strategic view and long-term perspective, Yu added.

Le Hong Anh, for his part, recalled his visit to China which he said had achieved positive progress. He said both sides have the responsibility to inherit and carry forward their traditional friendship fostered by the older generations of their leaders, such as late Vietnamese President Ho Chi Minh and late Chairman Mao Zedong of the CPC Central Committee.

Vietnam hopes to further enhance high-level contacts with China, boost non-governmental exchanges and cooperation in various areas, he said.

He called on both sides to implement the consensus reached between their senior leaders regarding maritime issues, and properly settle their differences.

Le Hong Anh expected Yu’s visit to further push forward bilateral all-round strategic cooperation partnership.

Yu is visiting Hanoi from Thursday to Saturday at the invitation of the CPV Central Committee and the Fatherland Front of Vietnam.







>>  Chinese FM arrives in Nepal

By Binaya Khanal

A Chinese delegation led by Foreign Minister Wang Yi arrived here on Thursday of December 25 for a three-day official goodwill visit, the highest level one from the Chinese side after the election of Nepal’s Constituent Assembly in November 2013.

According to the schedule provided by the Chinese Embassy in Nepal, Wang will meet with his Nepali counterpart Mahendra Bahadur Pandey at 10:30 a.m. on Friday. Bilateral issues such as trade and investment will be discussed at the meeting.

A joint press conference will be organized after the talks.

On Friday afternoon, Wang will call on Nepali President Dr. Ram Baran Yadav and Prime Minister Sushil Koirala as well as laying foundation stone for the China-funded Armed Police Force Academy building in Halchowk, Kathmandu.

The Chinese foreign minister will leave for Bangladesh on Dec. 27

Nepal and China will celebrate 60th anniversary of their diplomatic relations in 2015.







>>  New CPC roadmap sets out optimization of Party leadership structure

By Guo Likun

The new roadmap of the Communist Party of China (CPC) to improve leadership at various levels introduces measures to break down age barriers and welcome more people from diverse backgrounds.

“Party and government leadership at various levels are ‘the nervous centralis’ of a place or a unit and ‘the headquarters’ for the country’s Organization Department in an explanation of the roadmap on Thursday of December 25.

According to the new roadmap, a five-year guideline on improving Party leadership before 2018 that was made public Wednesday, more efforts will be made to ensure the right people assume key positions.

Candidates who are proficient in Party affairs as well as economic and social development should be selected to head the leadership team, and candidates should have relevant work experience in multiple positions, the explanatory statement went on.

Efforts should be made to enrich the leadership with people that have expertise in modern industry, agriculture, service industry, “new-type urbanization”, conservation culture or informationalization.

“Inclusion into the leadership team should not be simply set by candidates’ ages,” it said.

The guideline called for special attention to the training and selection of officials from state-owned enterprises, colleges and research institutes.

Women, ethnic minority groups and non-CPC members should also be properly represented, however, the standard should not be lowered, according to the statement.

“These measures aim to build a reasonable leadership structure by ensuring member’s ages, experience, expertise and personality complement one another, thus, improving the overall function of the team,” said the statement.







>>  Chinese military to build modern command headquarters

By Ren Ke

China’s Central Military Commission (CMC) publicized a guideline promoting the construction of modernized command headquarters.

The guideline, which was approved by CMC Chairman Xi Jinping, said new command headquarters would enhance the military’s operations.

The ability to command an army to win a regional war in the age of information is the goal of this new type of command headquarters, the guideline said.

The guideline urged all army units to listen to Xi’s instructions, which focused on the establishment of a strong army that was fit to operate in the contemporary military environment.

Combat effectiveness was set as the unique, fundamental criteria.

It also urged all army units to strengthen and improve their political and ideological structure through Xi’s instructions and to always focus on the Party’s direct leadership of the military, which would ensure absolute loyalty, morality and reliability.

The guideline urged all army units to strengthen command measures, through the building of integrated platforms, networks, software and databases, and to establish a joint operation command model based on an “information system”.







>>  Chinese military to test Ebola vaccine this month

By Liu Dongkai

The Chinese military has developed and will test an Ebola vaccine on humans this month, a Defense Ministry spokesman said on Thursday of December 25.

Spokesman Yang Yujun said at a regular press briefing that the vaccine had been developed by a research team at the Academy of Military Medical Sciences.

“The vaccine has recently passed appraisal by state and military authorities and will begin clinical tests in December,” Yang said.

Yang said the China-developed Ebola vaccine was the third one to have been put into clinical tests in the world. It is also the world’s first 2014-genetic mutation Ebola vaccine.

Yang said that since September, the Chinese military had sent some 300 medical personnel and specialists to Sierra Leone and Liberia in eastern Africa to help control the epidemic.

He said the Chinese medical teams had worked closely with the World Health Organization (WHO), Doctors Without Borders (MSF), local governments and the UN peace keeping force in Liberia to jointly combat the spread of the deadly disease. Enditem







>>  China searches for its most beautiful towns

By Li Laifang, Liu Shuo and Cao Ting

Four cities in northeast China’s Jilin Province joined a nationwide search for the best urbanization achievements.

Officials from the four candidate cities, Jilin, Meihekou, Ji’an and Yanji each presented their success stories at a seminar in the provincial capital Changchun on Thursday.

The search began in August in the eastern coastal Zhejiang Province, which also has four candidate towns.

One of China’s old industrial bases, Jilin achieved an urbanization rate of 54.2 percent in 2013, slightly higher than the national average.

Industry upgrades relying on innovation should be a “locomotive” of urbanization, said Zhang Chaowei, deputy head of the Institute of Modern Urban-Rural Development Planning under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

Wang Yuhai, professor of resources science and technology at Beijing Normal University, said building a new town should underline the advantages and distinctiveness of industry for its own beauty.

To preserve the good natural environment, it is necessary for the northeastern localities to jointly set strategic goals and policies in regional environment protection, said Yin Chengzhi, associate professor of Public Policy and Management at Tsinghua University, at the seminar.

The event, “Beautiful China. Looking for most beautiful towns”, was initiated by China’s Xinhua News Agency. Academics will evaluate 90 towns and cities across the country.

More than 30 million people have taken part by posting pictures of their hometowns online.

In March, China unveiled the National New-type Urbanization Plan (2014-2020) to steer urbanization onto a human-centered and environmentally friendly path.







>>  China spends big developing West

By an Bei and Cheng Jing

The Chinese government has invested billions of yuan in major infrastructure and energy projects in the less developed western regions this year.

Construction has started on 33 major projects, including railways, water conservation projects and hydropower stations, with a total investment of 835 billion yuan (136 billion U.S. dollars), the National Development and Reform Commission said.

From 2000 to 2014 period, the government invested 4.84 trillion yuan on 240 projects in the area.

At a time when China’s economy is struggling with softening domestic demand and a housing slowdown, the government is using infrastructure and industrial transfer to the west to support growth while reducing regional disparity.







>>  Thirsty Beijing to receive water from the south

By Wei Mengjia, Bai Xu and Yu Li

Water through the south-to-north diversion project is set to arrive in Beijing on Saturday, said local authorities on Thursday of December 25.

“The water will be directed to 15 of Beijing’s 16 districts and counties,” said Sun Guosheng, chief of the Beijing office of the South-to-North Water Diversion Project.

Sun also told the press that by next October, Beijing will receive818 million cubic meters of water.

The middle route’s first-stage project starts at the Danjiangkou Reservoir in the central province of Hubei. It was officially put into operation on Dec. 12.

It will supply 9.5 billion cubic meters of water annually to the northern regions, including the cities of Beijing and Tianjin, and provinces of Henan and Hebei.







>>  China encourages airlines to use domestically produced jets

By Qian Chunxian

China’s airlines are encouraged to use Chinese aircraft, including the regional jet model ARJ21, an official with China’s civil aviation authority said on Thursday of December 25.

The country should accelerate the development of routes in central and western areas and regional aviation, Zhou Laizhen, deputy director of Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), said at a conference.

The CAAC will help airlines in developing regional routes and encourage them to use domestically manufactured jets, Zhou said.

The ARJ21, short for Advanced Regional Jet for the 21st Century, is a regional liner model designed and manufactured by the Commercial Aircraft Corporation of China (COMAC). At present, the jet has gained 278 orders.

The CAAC will also seek to export aircraft and strive to ensure their safe operation, Zhou said.







>>  China’s civil aviation industry sees higher profits

By Rong Jiaojiao and Fan Xi

China’s civil aviation sector has grown steadily this year with profits in the first 11 months hitting 29.94 billion yuan (4.7 billion U.S. dollars), Chinese civil aviation authorities said on Thursday of December 25.

The figure has surpassed annual profits in 2013, according to Li Jiaxiang, head of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC).

The civil aviation industry achieved robust growth in 2014 by extending airports’ operating hours, optimizing flight routes and promoting global integration, Li said at a national work conference on civil aviation in Beijing.

The CAAC also forecast that the number of air travellers in the country will reach 390 million this year, up 10.1 percent year on year, and the civil aviation market will have targeted passenger traffic of 430 million in 2015.

The aviation sector is also expected to witness a surge in freight transport volume this year, with air cargo volume expected to grow 5.3 percent year on year to reach 5.91 million tonnes in 2014.

Li stressed aviation safety at the conference and urged greater efforts to improve air travel services and reduce flight delays.







>>  Suspects nabbed in China “AIDS demolition team” scandal

By Li Laifang and Liu Jinhui

Police in a central Chinese city have arrested major suspects in connection with an “AIDS demolition team”, whose members reportedly claim to be AIDS patients and threaten to infect people who refuse to move out of their houses.

Police are still investigating the case, said a publicity official in Nanyang City, Henan Province late on Thursday of December 25.

A photo of red graffiti that said “AIDS demolition team” surfaced on Chinese social media, triggering public outcry. The graffiti reportedly appeared in a community slated for demolition under a government plan.

The government of Nanyang City confirmed the existence of the team, but said it was not hired by the local government.

Residents say they have been harassed by the gang since early December. Allegedly, one member showed the residents documentation of his AIDS diagnosis, and the gang has used threats of infection and other tricks to drive them out.

Some residents have left out of fear, one local said.

An official with the Nanyang government said Wednesday a company in charge of the community’s demolition has been suspended pending investigation.

It is not yet known whether the team include genuine AIDS patients or just used the disease as a threat. The province of Henan was once known for its large population of HIV carriers, many of whom were villagers infected through illegal blood sales.  






>>  Sun Yang out of Zhejiang’s squad for winter training in Australia

By Yao Youming

Zhejiang swimming team left for winter training in Australia on Wednesday of December 24 without double Olympic champion Sun Yang.

Some of the swimmers will be coached by Sun Yang’s Australian coach Denis Cotterell, who split with Sun as a result of the new policy to be implemented by Swimming Australia after Sun’s doping ban was revealed.

Sun’s coach Zhang Yadong didn’t reveal Sun’s winter training plan.

The Chinese Swimming Association (CSA) announced last month that it had banned Sun for three months from May 16 to Aug. 17 as he had tested positive for the banned stimulant trimetazidine during the national championships in May.

Swimming Australia on Dec. 5 confirmed that a new policy regarding the process of notification and approval for the coaching of foreign swimmers was recently accepted and would be implemented. According to the policy,Sun Yang is banned from training in Australia by coach Denis Cotterell.







>>  Dog lovers’ protest ends in central China

By Han Xiaojing, Song Xiaodong and Liu Jinhui

A six-day protest against a poultry purchasing station involving dozens of dog lovers ended on Thursday of December 25 in central China’s Henan Province.

Dog lovers gathered in front of a poultry purchasing station in Yulong Township in Xingyang city to oppose illegal purchasing and transporting of dogs without quarantine certificates. They demanded the release of the dogs.

The local animal disease prevention and control department quarantined the 371 dogs on Wednesday.

According to local police, most of the protesters left the scene after police arrived. The remaining 30 were summoned to the police station for interrupting law enforcement, with four receiving warnings. All those summoned had left the police station on Thursday morning.

Transporting dogs without a quarantine certificate is illegal in China. However, the request of the protestors to release the dogs has no legal basis as transporting and raising poultry and dogs is allowed by law.







>>  China warns officials against extravagance during holidays

By Hu Longjiang

The central authorities have warned officials to rein in spending and luxury gifts during a season known for over consumption.

The circular, which was recently issued by the general offices of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the State Council, underscored that officials must remain frugal and not be tempted by corruption.

Officials were also reminded that unwarranted bonuses, banquets or galas, trips to private clubs, entertainment or travel financed with public money were strictly banned.

The officials were also told to not gamble or use public vehicles for personal purposes.

For the past two years, the central authorities have issued extravagance warnings to officials ahead of various holidays, such as the Mid-Autumn Festival, the National Day holiday, New Year’s Day and Spring Festival.

The CPC leadership meted out an “eight-point” guideline in late 2012 to curb corruption and improve work practice within the party and bring the people and the Party together.

A total of 96,788 officials have been punished for breaching the “eight-point” rules as of late November.

People in China will soon celebrate two important holidays of the year, the New Year’s Day and the Spring Festival, or the Chinese New Year’s Day.







>>  Leak of online ticketing data scares public

By Zhong Qun and Ma Xiaocheng

A leak of personal information from online train ticket sales during the busiest time of year has spurred public outcry over internet vulnerability.

A trove of personal data used for buying tickets on the official ticket-selling website is circulating on the internet, according to the report by Woo Yun, a renowned third-party internet security platform. The leaked information includes usernames, passwords and emails.

China Railway Corporation confirmed the news in a statement posted on microblog site Sina Weibo on Thursday, but said that the data leaked via other channels instead of on their website.

“All the leaked information contains plain text, while the information in our website’s database is completely encrypted, which means that the data leaked via other websites or channels,” said the statement.

As China’s Lunar New Year approaches, a big number of people have resorted to the internet as the fastest way to purchase tickets in the lead up to the Chunyun, the hectic travel period surrounding the Chinese New Year.

The ticket rush has also led to the birth of software and web browsers that allow passengers to cut ahead of others when snapping up online tickets. It is these channels that caused the leak, the statement said.

“We suggest passengers stay from third-party software and web browsers to avoid similar risks,” said the statement.

The leak has scared ticket buyers, with many saying on Weibo that they have already changed their passwords to prevent further risks. Others laid the blame on railway authorities, saying that they should shoulder responsibility for the information leak.

Police have launched an investigation into the case.







>>  Former vice mayor of quake-hit city dismissed for graft

By Zhong Qun and Li Hualiang

A former senior official of an earthquake-hit city in southwest China’s Sichuan Province has been dismissed from the Communist Party of China (CPC) for serious disciplinary violations, authorities confirmed on Thursday of December 25.

Former vice mayor of Ya’an City and former member of the city’s CPC Standing Committee, Pu Zhong, was placed under investigation in December 2013.

He has been removed from his posts on charges of graft, according to the provincial discipline inspection commission of the CPC.

Pu had been vice mayor of Ya’an since February 2010.

A 7.0-magnitude quake jolted Ya’an in April in 2013, leaving 196 dead and thousands injured.







>>  Lawmakers underline proper regulation, protection of overseas NGOs

By Cheng Zhuo

Chinese lawmakers on Thursday of December 25 urged both proper regulation of overseas nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in China and protection of their legal rights.

A bill to regulate overseas NGOs in China was submitted for its first reading at the bi-monthly session of the National People’s Congress standing committee, which runs from Monday to Sunday.

A document issued after the discussion said that most of the legislators believe it is necessary to use law to administer, guide and supervise overseas NGOs to ensure that they act in accordance with law.

The current bill combines both China’s experiences and good practices from overseas and is “generally practicable.”

Also on Thursday, legislators reviewed a draft law on national security, recognizing the necessity of such a law in safeguarding national sovereignty and interests and social stability as well as in promoting the rule of law.

They urged acceleration of the legislation process for the law while demanding further improvements.







>>  Xinhua vice president calls for cross-Strait media exchange

By Wang Di Chen Binhua and Xu Xueyi

Xinhua News Agency’s Vice President Yu Shaoliang called for increased exchange between media organizations across the Strait as he began a seven-day visit to Taiwan on Thursday of December 25.

Yu, who heads a delegation from nine mainland media agencies, said the increasingly close ties between media institutions reflect peaceful development of the cross-Strait relations in miniature.

“Media organizations on both sides should strengthen cooperation and exchange to satisfy the public’ s growing need for information,” Yu said. “Meanwhile, news agencies from the mainland and Taiwan need to work together to face up to the common challenges brought about by the information technology revolution.”

During the trip, the delegation will visit media companies in Taiwan and discuss strengthening cross-Strait media exchange with their Taiwanese peers.

The two sides will also hold a science and technology forum, an exhibition on cultural innovation and traditional culture, as well as a concert organized by a mainland TV show.

It is the forth visit to Taiwan by such a delegation and includes People’s Daily, China National Radio, China Daily and China News Service.







>>  Two provincial officials removed from posts

By Zuo Yuanfeng

Two senior officials of two Communist Party of China (CPC) provincial committees have been removed from office following disciplinary probes, CPC authorities announced on Thursday of December 25.

Wang Min was a former standing committee member of the CPC provincial committee of Shandong. Han Xuejian held a similar position in Heilongjiang Province.

“The two are suspected of severe disciplinary and law violations and have been removed from their posts according to decisions made by the CPC Central Committee,” said a statement released by the Organization Department of the CPC Central Committee.

The announcement came after the investigations into two separate cases involving them by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.







>>  China customs investigate 18,556 smuggling cases in Jan.-Nov.

By Zhang Xu ,Wang Youling and Wang Xi

Chinese customs have dealt with 18,556 smuggling cases from Jan. to Nov. this year, according to data released by the General Administration of Customs (GAC) on Thursday of December 25.

Among the cases, 2,158 cases have been filed for criminal investigation and 4,289 suspects have been placed under coercive measures, the data showed.

The GAC stressed harsh checks and punishment on drugs, arms, overseas waste and endangered animals and plants.

Some 1,191 smuggling cases involved tax evasion valuing 12.27 billion yuan (2.01 billion U.S. dollars), up 23.9 percent and 54.4 percent year on year, respectively.

Meanwhile, smuggling of agricultural products have been tackled strictly. 594 such cases with tax evasion of 7.95 billion yuan were investigated, involving 3 million tonnes of grain products, 122,000 tonnes of frozen meat and 150,000 tonnes of cotton, according to the GAC.

Zhang Guangzhi, the spokesman with GAC, said that the administration will continue tackling smuggling cases and enhance the market supervision in border areas.







>>  China takes stock of 2014 anti-porn achievements

By Tian Ying

China’s anti-pornography authorities on Thursday announced that it had confiscated a total of 15.79 million illegal publications in 2014.

In a press release that reviewed anti-pornography achievements in 2014, the National Anti-Pornography and Anti-Illegal Publications Office revealed key statistics and publication violations.

According to the press release, during 2014, 8,344 cases involving pornography and illegal publications had been dealt with, including 844 cases of pornographic publications, 2,687 cases of piracy, 584 cases of Internet pornography, 128 cases involving fake journalists or media organizations, among other cases.

In one case, a violator, identified as Zhong, was sentenced to 14 months in prison for making 40 yuan (6.45 U.S. dollars) from selling more than 20 disks containing pornography. He was caught with 242 ready to-be-sold disks.

A case involving illegal religious publications was also included on the top 10 major case list. Violators were found guilty of downloading overseas religious e-books, printing them in Guangdong province and then selling them in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.







>>  China sets to offer more eldercare beds

By Zuo Yuanfeng

China has set a goal to secure 30 nursing home beds per 1,000 people at or above the age of 60 by the end of 2015, up from the current 25.43, as the quickly growing aging population strains elderly care services.

The number of people in China aged 60 or older hit 202 million by the end of 2013, making up nearly 15 percent of the total population, according to official figures. Its senior population is expected to exceed 300 million in 2025 and take up 30 percent by 2050.

Nursing homes, whose capacities are mainly limited by bed numbers, play a key role in accommodating old people who live by themselves or cannot be properly cared for at home. However, even in big cities like Beijing, many senior citizens face a long waiting list before they can get a spot in a quality nursery due to bed shortage.

Revealed by Minister of Civil Affairs Li Liguo at a Thursday meeting, the goal of the nursing center beds is part of the 2015 plan for the civil affairs system that also includes overall quality boost in the country’s elder care services, the reform of state-sponsored elderly care institutions as well as better legislative efforts to ensure the old people’s benefits.

“We will map out more regulations on facilitating the financing, land provision, tax relief, allowance support for the elderly care service as well as favorable social treatments for the elderly and creating a sound environment for their living,” Li said.







>>  China to add over 13 million jobs in 2014

By Xu Bo and Jiang Xufeng

China’s job market has proved resilient despite slowing economic growth with more than 13 million new jobs expected to be created this year, said a senior Chinese official.

China’s registered urban jobless rate will remain at a “relatively low” level, Yin Weimin, China’s human resources and social security minister, said Thursday at a work conference, without giving a specific figure.

The new jobs numbers will beat the government’s full-year target of at least 10 million jobs. China’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanded 7.4 percent year on year in the first three quarters.

At the end of September, China’s urban registered jobless rate stood at 4.07 percent, lower than the annual employment control rate of 4.6 percent targeted by the government. China added 10.82 million jobs in the first nine months.

Yin’s remarks mean that more than 2 million jobs are expected be created in the fourth quarter.







>>  China’s non-fossil fuel to take larger share

By Liu Xinyong and Chen Weiwei

Non-fossil fuel will supply 11.1 percent of China’s total primary energy consumption this year, up from 9.8 percent in 2013, an official said on Thursday of December 25.

The share of coal may drop to 64.2 percent from 65.7 percent last year, Wu Xinxiong, director of the National Energy Administration (NEA), said at a conference on national energy work.

In 2014, total installed hydropower capacity will hit 300 million kW, installed wind power capacity will exceed 90 million kW and solar power capacity will reach 30 million kW.

The country has stepped up efforts in eliminating outdated thermal power units in its bid to combat air pollution, Wu added.

By 2020, non-fossil fuel will account for 15 percent of China’s total primary energy consumption, the government has promised.







>>  Man seized in south China for real estate fraud

By Fu Yong and Bai Xu

A man was arrested in south China’s island province of Hainan over allegations he illegally borrowed more than 1 billion yuan (161 million U.S. dollars) and duped potential real estate investors, announced local police on Thursday of December 25.

According to the Hainan provincial public security department, since 2008 the man, identified as Yang, allegedly borrowed 1.02 billion yuan from 71 creditors and invested the money into two real estate projects.

He has been accused of selling the apartments and retail outlets to 653 people from places across the country, including Shanxi and Chongqing.

Yang, who does not possess a legal business license, failed to pay off the loans and allegedly fled, leaving buyers without any legal rights to the apartments and shops.

He has confessed to his crimes, police said.

The investigation continues, and police are still looking for two other suspects.







>>  14 stand trial over arsenic pollution in China

By Li laifang, Li Pengxiang and Tan Yuanbin

Fourteen people from six mining companies stood trial on Thursday of December 25 in central China over arsenic pollution which poisoned 49 villagers.

The defendants were accused of discharging 680 tonnes of pollutants containing arsenic from 2008 to 2013, which seriously contaminated environment, said prosecutors.

They confessed to causing the pollution during the trial at the People’s Court of Xialu District, Huangshi City.

Forty-nine villagers suffered arsenic poisoning while urine samples of 118 others were found to contain excessive levels of the element.

The pollution caused losses of more than 8 million yuan (1.3 million U.S. dollars).

Seven people, including five local environmental protection officials, have been sentenced to different jail terms over the scandal.







>>  Yuan to see normal fluctuations in 2015: experts

By Zhan Yan

The Renminbi will experience “normal fluctuations” in 2015, experts said on Thursday of December 25.

The yuan will continue to experience depreciation and appreciation next year, said chief economist with the Bank of Communications Lian Ping.

The central parity rates of the yuan will see less violent changes in 2015 and its spot exchange rates will fluctuate between 6 and 6.4 against the U.S. dollar, as in 2014, Lian said.

The market is expecting the United States will raise interest rates amid its economic recovery and the U.S. dollars will strengthen, thus, the yuan will face downward pressure, but it will not depreciate remarkably, said chief analyst of the Beijing-based CFFEX Institute for Financial Derivatives Zhao Qingming.

This view was echoed by chief economist of the Industrial Bank Lu Zhengwei, who believes that China’s economic growth, trade and foreign exchange reserves are positive signs that the yuan will remain stable.

The spot exchange rate of China’s currency dropped below 6.21 against the U.S. dollar last Thursday, the weakest point in almost five months.

The central parity rate of the yuan climbed 34 basis points to 6.1213 against the U.S. dollar on Thursday, after five-consecutive day drops.

In China’s spot foreign exchange market, the yuan is allowed to rise or fall by 2 percent from the central parity rate each trading day. The central parity rate of the yuan against the U.S. dollar is based on a weighted average of prices offered by market makers before the opening of the interbank market each business day.







>>  Chinese shares Thursday surge from heavy losses

By Jiang Xufeng

Chinese shares rebounded from heavy losses over the previous two consecutive trading days, with the benchmark Shanghai Composite Index (SCI) jumping more than 3 percent to stand above the psychologically important 3,000-point mark.

The SCI surged 3.36 percent to finish at 3,072.54 points. The Shenzhen Component Index closed at 10,493.78 points, up 1.96 percent.

Total turnover on the two bourses slightly shrank to 579.89 billion yuan (94.75 billion U.S. dollars) from 583.97 billion yuan on the previous trading day.

Heavyweights, including insurance, brokerages, banks and infrastructure construction, led the gains, as some investors believe that shares are better priced after days of decline.

China’s leading insurance company China Life surged 9.98 percent to 27.87 yuan per share, and Bank of China rose 4.2 percent to 3.72 yuan apiece. China Railway Erju Co., Ltd. surged by the daily limit of 10 percent to 15.58 yuan per share.

Agriculture-related shares continued to gain across the board, as China concluded a rural work conference on Tuesday, vowing to push forward agricultural modernization through reform and innovation. Hefei Fengle Seed Co., Ltd. rose 3.52 percent to 11.17 yuan apiece.

The profits of China’s civil aviation sector in the first 11 months hitting 29.94 billion yuan, surpassing the annual profits in 2013, Li Jiaxiang, head of the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), said Thursday. Air China rose 6.35 percent to 7.54 yuan apiece.

The ChiNext Index, China’s Nasdaq-style board of growth enterprises, gained 0.64 percent to close at 1,529.47 points.







>>  Taiwan stocks close 0.29 pct lower

By Wang Xiaoni

Taiwan’s share prices closed down 0.29 percent on Thursday of December 25 with the weighted index down 27.48 points at 9,158.70, according to news reaching here from Taipei.

Turnover totaled 55.39 billion new Taiwan dollars (about 1.74 billion U.S. dollars) during the trading session.







>>  China farm produce prices up slightly

By Rong Jiaojiao and Liu Yangyang

China’s farm produce prices in 36 large and medium-sized cities edged up slightly in the week ending Dec. 21 compared with the previous week, the Commerce Ministry said on Thursday of December 25.

The average price of 18 vegetables went up 1.2 percent in the time period. The prices of celery and eggplant rose 6 percent and 5 percent, respectively.

Last week, the prices of mutton and beef rose 0.5 percent and 0.1 percent, respectively, and pork declined 0.1 percent. The average price of aquatic products went down 0.2 percent, and egg prices dropped 0.7 percent.

The prices of rice and flour stayed flat, and bean oil and peanut oil prices went down 0.4 percent and 0.1 percent, according to the ministry.

Food accounts for about one-third of China’s consumer price index (CPI), the main gauge of inflation.

China’s CPI grew by its slowest pace in five years in November, rising by 1.4 percent year on year, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

This is the third month in a row that China has seen its CPI rise within 2 percent. For the first 11 months, inflation grew 2 percent, well below the 3.5 percent full-year target set by the government.







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