AFRICAN STUDENT IN CHINA RUNS MARATHONS TO MAKE MONEY

The current passion for running in China is providing some African students with substantial moneymaking opportunities. One such student, Wilfred, earns money by running marathons all across China while studying at Ningbo University in Zhejiang province. The prize money can add up to nearly 20,000 RMB ($2,952) on a monthly basis,according to Wilfred.

Coming from the Kenyan city of Eldoret, home to 40-odd world champions of long-distance running, Wilfred has dreamed of becoming an engineer since childhood.Although he received a scholarship from Ningbo University, living expenses in China were still a concern for him. Sometimes he even restricted what he ate in order to save money.

Wilfred officially entered the marathon “business” after another African student from Ningbo University told him about the considerable prize money involved. With that money, Wilfred is not only able to afford his school’s 2,500-yuan accommodations and annual living expenses, he is also able to send money back to his family.

However, the running fever in China has also attracted a number of professional runners from other African countries, who provide Wilfred with very real competition. Wilfred noted that as winning the prize money has become increasingly difficult, he is running two hours every day to maintain his physical condition.

(This article is published on People’s Daily Online)

CAI QI APPOINTED ACTING MAYOR OF BEIJING

BEIJING, Oct. 31 — Cai Qi was appointed vice mayor and acting mayor of Beijing on Monday.

The appointment was announced at the 30th session of the Standing Committee of the 14th Beijing Municipal People’s Congress, which is the local legislature.

The meeting also accepted the resignation of Wang Anshun as mayor of Beijing.

(This article is published on People’s Daily Online)

XI JINPING MEETS WITH PRIME MINISTER CHARLES MICHEL OF BELGIUM

On October 31, 2016, President Xi Jinping met with Prime Minister Charles Michel of Belgium at the Great Hall of the People.

Xi Jinping pointed out that this year marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and Belgium, and the development of bilateral relations is facing new historical opportunities. Both sides should summarize the past and blaze new trails, so as to make unremitting efforts for the development of China-Belgium all-round friendly cooperation featuring vitality and persistence.

Xi Jinping stressed that China and Belgium should properly handle issues regarding each other’s core interests and major concerns on the basis of sincerity and friendship. China highly appreciates that the Belgian government adheres to the One-China policy. Both sides should base themselves on exploration and innovation. The economic and trade cooperation between both countries boasts profound foundation and great potential. Both sides could actively explore new cooperation in high-end technology and industries with high added value, and strengthen joint innovation, research and development by combining respective advantages and focusing on advanced manufacturing, new energy, eco-environment protection, modern service industry and other areas. It is hoped that Belgium can seize the opportunities brought by the “Belt and Road” construction to promote the development of China-Europe and Asia-Europe logistics industries and cooperation in cross-border e-commerce. China appreciates and welcomes Belgium’s willingness to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), and hopes that Belgium can become an AIIB member state as soon as possible. China welcomes Belgium’s active participation in the construction of the Euro-Asia Multimodel Transport Connectivity, the pan-European railway network and others. Both sides should also base themselves on opening up and win-win results. China and Belgium are committed to maintaining a fair and open international trade system. China has always valued the EU from a strategic height, firmly supports the European integration process and deepens its strategic partnership with the EU. It is hoped that Belgium would urge the EU to fulfill its obligations under Article 15 of the Protocol on the Accession of China to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in due time, and continue to play an active role in the development of China-EU relations.

Charles Michel said that he is glad to visit China on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of the establishment of bilateral diplomatic relations. The state visit of President Xi Jinping to Belgium in 2014 and the return visit of Belgian King Philippe to China last year have greatly promoted the development of bilateral relations. Belgium is glad to see the active trade and cultural exchanges between Belgium and China, and is willing to expand cooperation with China in judiciary, investment, innovation, aviation, new energy, digital economy and infrastructure and under the “Belt and Road” framework. Firmly holding that developing a positive relationship with China conforms to the EU’s own interests, Belgium is committed to promoting the establishment of an EU-China relationship featuring high-level mutual trust and mutually beneficial cooperation.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

LI KEQIANG HOLDS TALKS WITH PRIME MINISTER CHARLES MICHEL OF BELGIUM

On the afternoon of October 31, 2016, Premier Li Keqiang met at the Great Hall of the People with Prime Minister Charles Michel of Belgium who was on an official visit to China.

Li Keqiang expressed that China-Belgium relations keep a good development momentum with frequent high-level exchanges, continuously enhanced political mutual trust, and increasingly higher-level of practical cooperation and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. Taking the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries as a new starting point, China is willing to, together with Belgium, trust and treat each other equally, deepen practical cooperation, and enhance people-to-people and cultural exchanges, so as to inject new vitality into the development of bilateral relations.

Li Keqiang pointed out that Belgium has always been standing at the forefront of European countries in conducting practical cooperation with China. China is willing to, together with Belgium, further align development strategies, explore new growth points for cooperation, strengthen cooperation in such areas as technology and innovation, and advanced manufacturing industry, and enhance talent training in related areas. China also stands ready to strengthen cooperation with Belgium in security, and elevate practical cooperation to new heights. It is hoped that Belgium could ease restrictions on export of high-tech products to China, so as to achieve mutual benefits and win-win results between China and Belgium.

Li Keqiang stressed that Belgium is an important member of the EU, as well as an important cooperative partner of China in the EU. China always gives support to the European integration process, hoping to see a united, stable and prosperous EU. China is willing to, based on the reached consensus and agreements, conduct cooperation in multiple forms and various areas with the EU. It is hoped that Belgium can, by giving play to its important role in the EU, promote the EU to fulfill its obligation as stipulated in Article 15 of the Protocol on the Accession of China to the World Trade Organization (WTO) in due courses, terminate the surrogate country methodology, accelerate the negotiation process of the investment treaty between China and the EU as well as the feasibility study on the China-EU free trade area, and send out a signal of joint fight against trade protectionism, so as to push forward the healthy and steady development of bilateral economic and trade relations.

Charles Michel stated that high-level exchanges between Belgium and China are frequent and bilateral relations enjoy sound development. Belgium is willing to strengthen exchanges and cooperation with China in all areas such as politics, economy and culture, so as to constantly inject new vitality into the development of Belgium-China relations. Belgium insists on free trade and is committed to expanding bilateral trade and investment cooperation in agriculture, animal husbandry, information and communications, finance and insurance and other fields, hoping to become a gateway for Chinese enterprises to invest in Europe. Belgium stands ready to deal with issues related to the EU’s fulfillment of WTO obligations in a positive and pragmatic manner, and advance the negotiation on EU-China investment agreement, creating sound conditions for the development of EU-China economic and trade relations.

Both sides also exchanged views on international and regional topics of common interests.

Before the talks, Li Keqiang held a welcome ceremony for Charles Michel at the square outside the East Gate of the Great Hall of the People. Vice Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) Wang Qinmin and others attended the ceremony.

After the talks, Li Keqiang and Charles Michel jointly witnessed the signing of documents for bilateral cooperation in judiciary, infrastructure, high-technology and other areas.

In that afternoon, Charles Michel went to Tian’anmen Square and laid a wreath at the Monument to the People’s Heroes.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

XI JINPING MEETS WITH FOREIGN MINISTER JEAN-MARC AYRAULT OF FRANCE

On October 31, 2016, President Xi Jinping met with Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault of France at the Great Hall of the People.

Xi Jinping pointed out that I held a successful meeting with President Francois Hollande in Hangzhou last month, reaching new and important consensus on developing China-France comprehensive strategic partnership. To promote greater development of bilateral relations, both sides should adhere to mutual respect, mutual support, mutual benefit, win-win results, pioneering spirit and innovation, and make them basic guiding principles of bilateral relations. Both sides should well carry out the Hinkley Point nuclear power plant in the UK as well as other major projects, and comprehensively expand cooperation in such areas as trade, investment and finance to deepen the integration of interests. Both sides should enrich people-to-people and cultural exchanges, expand local cooperation, promote personnel exchanges and enhance mutual understanding and acknowledgment. China and France should strengthen communication and coordination in international affairs and jointly advance the implementation of the Paris Agreement and outcomes of the G20 Hangzhou Summit, so as to play a greater role in addressing development and hotspot issues.

Xi Jinping stressed that China has always valued its relations with the EU from a strategic perspective and firmly supports the European integration process. China is willing to deeply push forward the construction of China-EU four major partnerships. We expect the French side to play a more positive role to this end. China hopes that France will continue to support and facilitate the docking between the “Belt and Road” initiative and Europe’s development strategies.

Jean-Marc Ayrault congratulated China on successfully hosting the G20 Hangzhou Summit again and thanked China for its outstanding contributions to reaching the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. He said that it is very important to maintain close high-level exchanges between both sides. France actively supports the “Belt and Road” initiative, and is willing to work with China to strengthen economic, trade and investment ties, properly implement the Hinkley Point nuclear power plant and other major projects, explore mutually beneficial cooperation in such areas as medicine, health, sustainable development and urban construction, as well as deepen people-to-people and cultural exchanges in education, film, television and other fields. The French side stands ready to reinforce cooperation with China within the UN Security Council and other multilateral frameworks, and believes that the EU should continue to be a reliable partner for China.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

WANG YI TALKS ABOUT SYRIAN SITUATION: SEEKING A NEW WAY OUT IN THE TANGLED WEB

On October 31, 2016, when jointly meeting the press after holding talks with Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault of France, Foreign Minister Wang Yi introduced China’s position and views on the Syrian situation upon inquiry.

Wang Yi said that the recent Syrian situation is worrisome. Intervention of various forces and complicated contradictions have driven the situation into a tangled web that is hard to unravel. All parties should reconsider and seek a new way out in the tangled web.

Wang Yi pointed out that at present, the political settlement of the Syrian issue faces three tasks, namely peace talks, anti-terrorism and refugees, which have intertwined with and affected each other. In order to break the deadlock and find a new way out, we should concentrate on solving the most pressing issue and identify the greatest common divisor for more substantial international cooperation.

China believes that it is imperative to fight against terrorism and restore stability in the Middle East, which is the fundamental solution to the spread of humanitarian crisis and the shared goal acceptable to all parties at present. We hope that all parties can reach a broader consensus in this regard and carry out more effective international counter-terrorism cooperation.

Second, it is the fundamental direction to adhere to political settlement. This is the established rule laid down in UN resolutions and must be upheld without any second thoughts. That is to say, the starting point of all actions taken by various parties on the Syrian issue should be conducive to, rather than hinder the political settlement of the Syrian issue.

Third, it is the right way for the UN to play a leading role. The UN not only has the full legitimacy and authority to serve as a main mediation channel, but also can coordinate the positions and synergize consensus of all parties in a more effective way. China supports the UN to play a greater role in the political settlement of the Syrian issue.

Wang Yi noted that all parties hold different views on the arrangement of Syrian leaders and other tough issues. China advocates finding a proper solution through consultations among various parties in accordance with the Syrian-led and Syrian-owned principle during the process of promoting the political settlement roadmap laid out in the UN Security Council Resolution 2254.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

WANG YI TALKS ABOUT PALESTINIAN ISSUE: SUPPORT THE TWO-STATE SOLUTION AND CALL FOR RESUMING PALESTINE-ISRAEL PEACE TALKS

On October 31, 2016, Foreign Minister Wang Yi met the press with Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault of France after their talks in Beijing, during which he introduced China’s position and views on Palestinian issue upon inquiry.

Wang Yi said that Palestinian issue is a wound of human consciousness. Today, when we turn our eyes upon Syria and Libya, we should bear in mind that Palestinian issue is the earliest hotspot issue in the Middle East and it has remained unsolved for 70 years. When we extend our hands to refugees around the world, we should not forget Palestinian refugees were among the first refugees in the Middle East, and they have been suffering from conflicts and poverty for the past 70 years.

Wang Yi said that Palestinian issue marks the core of Middle East issue, and if this problem remains unsolved, there will be no peace in the Middle East and even in the world. Firmly upholding the “two-state solution”, China thinks Palestine should be given the right to peacefully found a nation. China opposes any new settlement built in the occupied territory, and suggests that possibility should be created to the resumption of talks, not the other way around. China stands for the Arab countries and the League of Arab States to play a more active role, including promoting internal reconciliation and solidarity in Palestine. China expects the United Nations to more actively carry out mediation efforts and to strengthen its political settlement. As a sincere friend of the Arab brothers, China has been trying to promote peace talks in its own way. China now is in the process of communicating with the countries concerned and plans to convene a seminar for the peace lovers in Palestine and Israel in the near future, so as to inject positive energy in motivating the resumption of talks and advancing the peace process.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

WANG YI TALKS ABOUT CHINA’S INVESTMENT ENVIRONMENT: INCREASING OPENNESS WILL BE AN INEVITABLE TREND

On October 31, 2016, when jointly meeting the press with Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault of France in Beijing, Foreign Minister Wang Yi responded upon inquiry to some groundless comments on the investment environment of China and overseas investment of Chinese enterprises.

Wang Yi said that in recent years, two-way investment of China and other countries has achieved rapid development, which is a healthy way for China to conduct mutually beneficial cooperation with other countries. As for China’s overseas investment, the Chinese government encourages competent Chinese enterprises to invest in and cooperate with countries that have interest in attracting Chinese investment in accordance with market principles and business specifications. When it comes to foreign investment, Chinese enterprises always abide by local laws and regulations, as well as respect cultural practices and customs of the local people. Their foreign investment will continue to achieve sound development and reap more mutually beneficial and win-win results. In regard to foreign investment in China, it is very clear that China always welcomes foreign enterprises to invest and develop business in China. This is an established policy of China and is also in line with the trend of economic globalization.

Wang Yi pointed out that China is still a developing country. It is not scientific and comparable to simply evaluate and measure the investment environment of developing countries with the standard of highly developed countries. However, the Chinese market, as one of the most widely open developing economies, obviously ranks high in terms of the pace and range of openness compared horizontally with other developing countries. More importantly, with further development, China’s door of opening up will be much wider to the outside world and its investment environment will be better and better, which is a completely predictable and inevitable trend.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

ZHANG DEJIANG MEETS WITH PRIME MINISTER CHARLES MICHEL OF BELGIUM

On October 31, 2016, Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC) Zhang Dejiang met at the Great Hall of the People with Prime Minister Charles Michel of Belgium.

Zhang Dejiang said that China-Belgium relations maintain an increasingly stronger development momentum in recent years. In particular, the mutual visits of President Xi Jinping and King Philippe of Belgium have pinpointed a new positioning of China-Belgium all-round friendly cooperative partnership. This year marks the 45th anniversary of the establishment of China-Belgium diplomatic relationship. The NPC stands ready to work with the Belgian Federal Parliament to further strengthen exchanges and cooperation, well implement the consensus reached by the two heads of state, enhance dialogues on issues such as democracy, the rule of law, society, livelihood and ecological protection, accelerate the ratification process and early entry into force of judiciary-related cooperation agreements, and create a good policy and legal environment for bilateral economic and trade cooperation as well as enterprise investment, so as to inject new impetus into the development of China-Belgium relations and advance the development of China-EU relations.

Charles Michel expressed that this visit will help both countries to enhance trust and friendship. Belgium is willing to further deepen cooperation in politics, diplomacy, economy and culture with China.

Zhang Ping attended the meeting.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)

WANG YI HOLDS TALKS WITH FOREIGN MINISTER JEAN-MARC AYRAULT OF FRANCE

On October 31, 2016, Foreign Minister Wang Yi held talks in Beijing with visiting Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault of France.

Wang Yi noted that China-France relations maintain a good momentum at present. Both sides enjoy frequent high-level exchanges, continuing highlights in practical cooperation and great headway in such major programs as energy, aviation and ecology. The two countries are deepening people-to-people and cultural exchanges, carrying out sound cooperation in global governance, and maintaining communication and coordination in international and regional hotspot issues. President Xi Jinping held a successful meeting with President Francois Hollande during the G20 Hangzhou Summit, which injects new vitality into the development of China-France relations. Both sides should well implement the important consensus reached by the two heads of state, strengthen communication and work together to push for the healthy and stable development of China-France relations, and add new connotations to China-France comprehensive strategic partnership. China supports the European integration process and stands ready to work with the EU to deepen the development of China-EU relations.

Jean-Marc Ayrault stated that France-China relations maintain high-level development and both sides cooperate in extensive areas with fruitful achievements. France welcomes Chinese enterprises to make investment in France. As both sides will respectively address important domestic political agendas next year, the two countries should strengthen strategic communication to ensure policy continuity. France is fully confident in the future of bilateral relations and will continue to promote the in-depth development of France-China comprehensive strategic partnership. Wang Yi agreed with Jean-Marc Ayrault’s positive comments on China-France relations. He introduced to the French side the important decisions and major achievements made in the 6th plenary session of the 18th Communist Party of China Central Committee. Wang Yi also expressed China’s willingness to enhance strategic mutual trust and deepen strategic cooperation with France so as to propel China-France relations to a new height.

Wang Yi and Jean-Marc Ayrault have reached extensive consensus on China-France relations and practical cooperation in the next stage.

Both sides agreed to maintain high-quality high-level exchanges, well hold bilateral institutional dialogues, carry forward traditional friendship, respect and support each other, and accommodate each other’s core interests and major concern, for the sake of better and faster development of China-France relations.

Both sides agreed to comprehensively deepen and expand practical economic and trade cooperation, and focus on cooperation in major programs and key areas. Both sides are committed to deepening cooperation in the whole industry chain of nuclear energy, strengthening cooperation in trade, investment, and finance, pushing forward third-party market cooperation and local cooperation in a solid way, forging ahead the “Belt and Road” construction, and tapping greater room and potential for mutually beneficial cooperation.

Both sides agreed to actively carry out people-to-people and cultural exchanges so as to lay a solid public opinion foundation for China-France relations. Both sides will well implement cooperation projects in education, technology, culture, health, sports, tourism and other areas, further improve the level of convenience for personnel exchanges, and advance communication between people of the two countries, young people in particular.

Both sides agreed to maintain communication and coordination in international affairs, play a leading role in issues including climate change and global economic governance, push forward the effective and comprehensive implementation of the Paris Agreement and achievements made in the G20 Hangzhou Summit and continue to play a positive role in the peaceful settlement of international and regional hotspot issues.

Both sides also exchanged views on international and regional hotspot issues of common concern, including the Syrian issue, the Palestine-Israel issue and the Korean Peninsula situation.

(This article is published on the official website of Chinese Foreign Ministry)