The bond pricing mechanism will be further improv

Under a pilot scheme, the first group of six provinces and cities sold 6.8 billion yuan in bonds

at commercial bank counters to individual buyers between March 22 and early April.

The coupon rates are between 3.01 percent and 3.33 percent, higher than treasury b

onds issued by the central government as well as bank deposits with the same maturity.

Gross local bond issuances hit 1.18 trillion yuan in the first qua

rter, compared with only 219.5 billion yuan in the same period last year.

The total quota for 2019 local government bond issuances is 3.08 trillion yuan, according to the Ministry of Finance.

“About 60 percent of the bonds were issued for ongoing construction, especially

for shantytown renovation projects, railways and roads,” said Hao Lei, head of the ministry’s Budget Department.

While debt financing continues to grow, the government is experiencing sharp declin

es in fiscal revenue growth, especially from tax and land sales, official data showed.

xxxct.cn

Underscoring the increasingly important role of railw

way in social and economic development, leaders from China and the CEECs voiced support fo

r moving forward practical cooperation in the development of the China-Eur

ope Land Sea Express Line and making use of European Union (EU)-Chin

a Connectivity Platform to promote development of intermodal freight transportation.

Taking note of the Three Seas Initiative, the participants to the leaders’ meeting expressed their welcome to port cooperat

ion between China and the CEECs, including the opportunities deriving from inland waterways and the interm

odal connections to further enhance the cargo transportation between Asia and Europe.

Leaders from China and the CEECs also expressed their willingness to explo

re the possibilities of establishing a China-CEEC Customs Information Center in Hungary and

their support for the holding of the 5th China-CEEC Transport Ministers’ Meeting in 2020 in Croatia.

www.suiyincoin.cn

People-to-people contacts, as a non-ignorable compon

ent of the Belt and Road Initiative, are boosted by China and Azerbaijan

via linking people of the two countries in cultural exchange, education, human

itarian dialogue and tourism cooperation. China and Azerbaijan signed a memorandum of understanding to stim

ulate tourism between the two countries. “Data from 2018 shows 15,000 Chinese tourists visited Azerbaijan last year, w

hich is not enough of course, and we aim to do more to attract more visitors in the coming years,” Hajiyev said.

He also highlighted education exchanges between the two countries, as China has sent students to study language in Azerba

ijan and viceAs Azerbaijan has a favorable political and geographic location, the country aims to become a tran

sport hub connecting Europe and Asia under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative. “The point of the transp

ortation network is to integrate it with the original countries,” Hajiyev said, adding Azerbaijan has built a network of transp

ortation including seaports, airports, railways and land roads.-versa. “We are looking forward to increase the numb

er of (students) because we see they can play the role of a humanitarian bridge between our countries.”

yeaste.cc

Wudang Mountain attracts foreign martial arts ap

About 20 Chinese martial arts schools in the Wudang Mountain region have tra

ined about 30,000 kung fu enthusiasts from around the world.

Yuan Xiugang, a member of the Wudang Martial Arts Association, has taugh

t over 60 foreign students since 1995. One of his apprentices, Jack, a 29-year-old from Ill

inois in the US, first arrived in Wudang 10 years ago. Now Jack has become a kung fu coach.

“My goal is to open a school in the US, letting more Americans appreciate authentic Chinese martial arts,” he said.

Thomas, another of Yuan’s students, is from France and explores tea culture. He leases about

two acres of a tea garden at Wudang Mountain. After mastering the technique of processing tea leaves, Th

omas decided to sell his products to European countries, like France and Austria.

qe78w.cn

hina will continue to suspend extra tariffs on

The State Council said on Sunday that China would continue to suspend additional tariffs on US

vehicles and auto parts after April 1, in a goodwill gesture following a US decision to delay tariff hikes on Chinese imports.

In December, China said it would suspend additional 25 percent tariffs on US-made vehi

cles and auto parts for three months, following a truce in a trade war between the world’s two largest economies.

The State Council, or China’s cabinet, said the move was aimed at “continuing to create a good atmosphere for the ongoing trade negotiations between both sides”.

elt and Road Initiative serves to promote multilateral cooperation: China Daily editorial

t is natural for such a big international project as China’s Belt and Road Initiative to be ta

ken by some with a grain of salt. But the fact that 129 countries and 29 international organizations

have so far signed cooperation documents with China on the initiative shows that such views are in the minority.

The most common charges laid at China’s door are the Belt and Road is a debt trap and it is all about Chi

na’s strategic objectives. It has also been called a “scheme to split European Union”. And other labels will certainly appear.

www.sjhtjn.cn

The government has ruled out holding another referendu

um on Britain’s EU membership, but could change its mind if there appeared no other way to pass a Brexit deal.

Britain voted 52 percent to 48 percent to leave the EU in 2016. Since then, polls sugge

st the “remain” side has gained in strength, but it’s far from clear who would win a new referendum.

The new vote could leave Britain just as divided over Europe as it is now.

The Chinese aid team sent to cyclone-stricken Mozambique provided medical services to about 1,30

0 people and food to more than 1,000 on Wednesday, according to the Ministry of Emergency Management.

The first squad offered medical services to more than 500 people in a shelter 10 kilomete

rs away from its Beira city camp, and also disinfected an area of almost 10,000 square meters.

Having received information from an unmanned aerial vehicle, the seco

nd squad visited another shelter more than 70 kilometers away from the Chinese tea

m’s camp, carrying food and medicine, the ministry said in a statement late Thursday.

www.ex177.cn

Crews clean up foul water at blast sitel teams are nitoring

Environment officers were busy preventing the spread of polluted water insi

de an industrial park in Jiangsu province that was hit by a deadly blast last week.

Priority had been given to the treatment of wastewater in the exploded chemical plant and the huge

pit the explosion generated, according to a release from the Ministry of Ecology and Environment on Friday.

The deadly blast occurred at about 2:48 pm on March 21 following a fire in a plant owned b

y Jiangsu Tianjiayi Chemical Co. The accident has left at least 78 dead and more than 600 injured.

Alkali had been thrown into the waste water to neutralize its acidit

y so that the polluted water could flow to a nearby treatment plant via a pipeline. Otherwise, the wa

stewater would erode the pipeline, according to a working team the ministry dispatched to the site.

qsnsjb.org

Three government ministers quit their posts so they could

back the motion. Richard Harrington, who resigned as a junior business minister, accused the government of “playing roulette with the lives and liveli

hoods of the vast majority of people in this country” by failing to resolve Britain’s Brexit impasse.

The government said it was disappointed by the vote, claiming it “upends the balance

between our democratic institutions and sets a dangerous, unpredictable precedent for the future.”

But it also conceded that the new votes might be a way to break the months-long Brexit gridlock. May said she would “engage

constructively” with the results of the process, though sahe said she was skeptical that it would produce a decisive result.

The move raises the chances that Britain will tack toward a softer Brexit, and is likely to be welcomed by th

e EU. Guy Verhofstadt, the European Parliament’s Brexit coordinator, tweet that it was an “opportunity to build a cross-party coope

ration leading to an enhanced political declaration & a closer future relationship!”Earlier in the day, May ack

nowledged, “with great regret,” that her deal still lacked “sufficient support” to be approved as of Monday.

qianhuain.com

We will step up efforts to expand cooperation with sho

video platforms such as Kuaishou, Bilibili, Douyin and Huoshan, to obtain more data flows and encourage brands and buyers to do more live broadcasts,” Zeng said.

It also plans to tap into the social e-commerce sector, which is currently in its testing phase.

Experts say the livestreaming explosion is boosting China’s e-commerce sector. The new

format could display the commodities in more dimensions and increase users’ trust.

Cao Lei, director of China E-Commerce Research Center, said this method could attract consume

rs’ attention quickly and accurately as most of the livestreaming users are post-90s generation who are accusto

med to shopping online, as well as help online retailers to gain data flows and create a “real” shopping scenario.

“Immediate feedbacks could be given to merchants based on users’ instructions. Through their

mobile phones, consumers are able to talk with overseas buyers, which will greatly enhance users’ trust on the platform.”

China’s cross-border e-commerce sector has been growing rapid

ly over the past few years, owing to a rapid growth in the nation’s middle and high-income shoppers.

shlf16.com

As Liu noted, the debt balance of local governments stood

  at 18.39 trillion yuan ($2.74 trillion), well below the official ceiling of 21 trillion yuan. The loc

al debt ratio of 76.6 percent is also much lower than the international warning line of 100 percent to 120 percent.

  The government has said there will be no major changes in the government debt ratio in the years

to come versus the level in 2017, and, more important, it has vowed to increase the transparency of government debts.

  Hopefully, this will help root out the exaggerated fears about a syste

mic financial meltdown, so that doomsayers will no longer have an excuse to cry wol

f.n 2018, the average monthly salary of Chinese women was 6,497 yuan, which was 78.3 percent of that of men, an incr

ease of 8.7 percentage points over the previous year, according to a report on China’s gender gap in workplaces, relea

sed by online recruitment website zhipin.com on Wednesday. The report said that jobs, industries and seniority we

re the top three contributing factors of the gender pay gap, while education could help narrow it.

www.khlee.com.cn