Regarding the second Belt and Road Forum for Intern

ational Cooperation, to be held in Beijing on Thursday through Saturday, S

ong said the ministry will help deepen economic and trade cooperation with other coun

tries. “China will build more free trade zones with countries that are willing to do so,” Song added.

“As for the existing free trade zones, we will reduce administrative barriers in trade

and investment and push the formation of a big Belt and Road marketplace.”

While some critics have argued that the initiative will lead countries i

nto debt traps, Song said debt can be solved through joint efforts to promote the devel

opment of BRI economies. “Even though some countries may have high debt levels, as their pace of indus

trialization, urbanization and modernization accelerates, their debts will gradually decrease.”

Joe Kaeser, president and CEO of Siemens AG, said, “If an initiative like the BRI unifies more than two-thirds of the global

population, it will create massive infrastructure and economic movement that will build its own rules.”

www.shlfapp.com

Govt plans slew of policies to boost consumption

A slew of new policies aimed at encouraging consumption

in key sectors will be unveiled soon, China Securities Journal reported.

China’s retail sales of consumer goods rose 8.3 pe

rcent year-on-year to 9.78 trillion yuan ($1.46 trillion) in the January-M

arch period, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS). In March alone, retail sales went up 8.7 pe

rcent to 3.17 trillion yuan, quickening from the 8.2-percent rise seen in the first two months.

In recent years, the government has, on the one hand, frequently intro

duced policies to promote opening-up, increase import and improve consumer welfare. On

the other hand, it has reduced and scrapped import tariffs on some consumer goo

ds. This has played an active role in consumption, Lian Ping, chief economist at Bank of Comm

unication said, adding that consumption still is the key driver for economic growth.

www.ashtt.com

President hails US high school students’ roles

Mandarin learners encouraged to play parts in fostering bilateral friendship

President Xi Jinping encouraged a group of United States high-school students to boost

friendship between China and the US as he replied to their letter written to him in Chinese.

“I hope you will make the best of your time, study hard and contribute y

our part to a deeper friendship between the people of our two countries,” Xi wrote in th

e letter, saying the young generations represent the future of the Sino-US friendship.

Over 40 students from Niles North High School in the state of Illinois who are studyi

ng Mandarin Chinese recently wrote to Xi, asking about his work, life and hobbies.

They told the Chinese leader in the letter that they are studying Mandarin, and they love the Chinese language, music and cuisine.

In his written response, Xi expressed gratitude to the students for their letter, and said he

can feel from the letter their love of the Chinese language as well as their interest in Chinese culture.

lianweicms.cn

Xi shared some of his personal life. He said he has a dee

 interest in philosophy, history, literature, culture, music and sports, and that he first cul

tivated many of these interests back in middle school and they have stayed with him ever since.

His job is serving the people, and he works hard with a busy schedule, but takes great pleasure in his work, Xi wrote.

The Niles North students also inquired whether Xi likes the US.

Xi answered in the letter that he has visited their country many times and is impressed with the “beautiful landscape, hos

pitable people and diverse culture”, and he made a lot of friends, including some young people.

He said the students are “wonderful” and expressed hope that they will make greater progress in studying Chinese.

Learning Chinese will help them better understand China, a

d get acquainted with more Chinese friends and Chinese-speaking friends across the world, Xi said.

www.daochuwan.cn

Unlike the second version, the latest one included rule

on the new science and technology innovation board, which will pilot the registration-based IPO system, according to Xinhua.

To accommodate the progress of reforms and development of the capital market, other modifications have also been made, cov

ering public issuance of securities, securities trading, and the protection of investors’ rights and interests, Xinhua said.

Dong expects the latest version to legitimize registration-based IPO systems not only

on the new board, but also across China’s whole A-share market. “Once the system achieves success on the n

ew board, it should be adopted on other submarkets as soon as possible,” Dong said.

President Xi Jinping announced in November that China will launch the S&T innovation board and pilot the registr

ation-based IPO system. Analysts expect the new board to begin trading around the middle of this year.

“The latest draft is expected to make comprehensive revisions, and it could go a long way

toward restoring public investors’ confidence and modernizing the regulation and governance of the ca

pital market,” said Liu Junhai, director of the Business Law Center at Renmin University of China.

www.jsLongsun.com

China releases report on progress, contributions and pro

China on Monday published a report elaborating on the progress, contributions and prospects of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

The document, prepared by the office of the leading group for promoting the BRI, was released ahead

of the second Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation to be held from April 25 to 27 in Beijing.

The Belt and Road Initiative is an initiative for peaceful

development and economic cooperation, rather than a geopolitical or military alliance, said the rep

ort. “It is a process of open, inclusive and common development, not an exclusionary bloc or a ‘China club’.”

“It neither differentiates between countries by ideology nor plays the zero-sum

game. Countries are welcome to join the initiative if they so will,” according to the report.

The BRI has turned ideas into actions and vision into reality, and i

tself into a public product widely welcomed by the international community, the report said.

www.pLaycruises.net

Since clinical trials are a key part of development, a ne

 rule has been added stating that such tests should also follow ethical pri

nciples. It also clarified the responsibilities of the ethics review board.

Researchers should also explain the risks of an experiment to test participants and obtain their consent before proceeding.

The draft laws are the latest by Chinese authorities to encourage responsible research practices and increase the effe

ctiveness of the nation’s oversight in scientific research, especially those related to humans.

Experts said the regulations have been long-awaited in the scienti

fic community, and they are curious to see future details and its effects on their research.

Huang Yu, deputy director of the medical genetics department at Peking University, said it used to be difficult to h

old violators of research ethics accountable because of a lack of clear legal rules.

shlfwab.com

A PLA Navy carrier battle group sails in formation. en active in

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy has been active in pr

oviding security products for the international community since its founding, Qiu said.

The navy has paid over 100 visits to 94 countries and 138 ports, and has held more th

an 60 joint military drills with foreign navies over the 70 years, according to Qiu.

Since 2008, the navy has sent 32 escort fleets, 103 vessels, 69 helicopters and more than 27,000 officers and soldiers to escor

t over 6,600 vessels, more than a half of which were foreign merchant ships, he added.

Since 2010, the naval hospital ship Peace Ark has traveled to 43 countries and regions and provided free medical servi

ces to over 230,000 people, Qiu said.Under the current IPO system, new shares are subject to approval from t

www.fanxgq.cn

Wheat growing on a farm in Huai’an, Jiangsu province

A threat to the viability of the current WTO dispute settlement system is the unilateralism and

protectionism of the United States. Specifically, this mechanism is in crisis because the Unit

ed States has prevented the appointment of new judges to the appellate body. Experts have warned that if th

e appellate body were to shut down because of a lack of judges, global trade governance will be put back 20 years.

Of course the WTO also needs to continually reforming itself so that it can keep up w

ith the times, and many countries have put forward relevant suggestions. For instance, the European Uni

on has released a paper putting forth ideas for a comprehensive modernization of the WTO, and the United States, Eur

ope, and Japan have together submitted a their own proposed reforms. And in November last year, China ann

ounced that it supported necessary reforms of the WTO and raised five proposals that aim to firmly uphold the rules-ba

sed multilateral trading system, resist protectionism, and let the WTO play a bigger role in world trade.

www.shidaikangfuyiyuan.cn

Remaining poverty alleviation tasks are quite arduou

s, and government departments must make continuous efforts to ensure tasks are completed. Off

icials of poverty-stricken counties must keep a close eye on problems to ensure people can escape poverty.

The Party’s publicity work was also discussed. It’s the top political task to learn and publi

cize Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, the statement said. A

ll Party committees must pay great attention to publicity work and ensure the implementation of regulations.

A draft amendment to the Securities Law was submitted Saturday to a bimonthly session of

the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, China’s top legislature, for a third reading.

The latest revisions to the law include rules on the newly-devised science and technol

ogy innovation board, which will pilot a registration-based initial public offering (IPO) system.

Under the current IPO system, new shares are subject to approval from the China Securities Regulatory Commission before being listed.

oqvdpf.cn