COMMENTARY: TIME FOR CHINA AND LATIN AMERICA TO BOOST COOPERATION

At the invitation of Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa, Peruvian President Pedro PabloKuczynski and Chilean President Michelle Bachelet, Chinese President Xi Jinping will kickoff a week-long Latin America trip starting from Nov. 17, during which Xi will attend the 24th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Economic Leaders’ Meeting in Lima,Peru. The visit will be the last overseas trip of the year for Chinese leaders.

Ecuador enjoys a traditional friendship with China featuring mutual trust and complementary advantages. During a state visit made by Correa to China in January 2015,Chinese and Ecuadoran leaders decided to upgrade bilateral ties to a strategic partnership.As the first ever trip to Ecuador by a Chinese head of state, Xi’s visit will raise bilateral ties to a new high.

China and Peru are also good friends with mutual trust and common development. Peru is the only Latin American country that has both established a comprehensive strategic partnership and signed bilateral free trade agreements with China. China has become Peru’s biggest trade partner, export destination and source of imports. Xi’s state visit to Peru, coming on the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the countries, will elevate their bilateral relationship.

China and Chile are close partners as well. Chile was the first Latin American country to establish a diplomatic relationship with the People’s Republic of China, and also the first in Latin America to sign a free trade agreement with China. As close strategic partners,China and Chile are now witnessing enhanced political trust, deepened pragmatic cooperation and expanded cultural exchange. Xi’s visit, coming when bilateral ties are at an all-time high, will propel the countries’ strategic partnership to even greater heights.

As important partners to China in Latin America, Ecuador, Peru and Chile are on the forefront of Latin American cooperation with China. During Xi’s visit to Latin America in July 2014, he proposed raising the China-Latin America trade volume to $500 billion within a decade, and increasing FDI stock in Latin America to $250 billion. He also proposed establishing the “1+3+6” China-Latin America cooperation framework.

The first China-CELAC Forum meeting held in Beijing in January 2015 marked a new status for the relationship between China and Latin America – a status wherein integral and bilateral cooperation develop together and reinforce one another. Now, Xi’s Latin America tour is expected to consolidate this cooperation and advance China-Latin America ties still further.

At present, given the sustained yet slow and imbalanced global economic recovery, the economy in the Asia-Pacific region has slowed a little. Nevertheless, it is still a region with great vitality and potential. Faced with various new challenges, APEC needs to develop by following the current trends and adopting an innovative mindset to forge ahead.

China is not only a participant, promoter and guide for Asia-Pacific cooperation, it is also a constructor of and contributor to APEC. China offered a roadmap for building an “Asia-Pacific community of common destiny” at the 2013 APEC meeting in Bali, by calling on countries in the Asia-Pacific to seek common, open, innovative and interactive development.

At the 2014 APEC meeting in Beijing, China was the first to propose the Asia-Pacific dream of common development, prosperity and advancement. It also initiated the building of the Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific. During the 2015 APEC meeting in Manila, China urged for the formulation of mid- and long-term strategic frameworks for Asia-Pacific cooperation.

China has always upheld the idea that reform and innovation should be carried out together in order to develop the Asia-Pacific region and economy. The APEC trade ministers’ meeting, held in May, implemented the agreed-upon terms from the 2014 APEC meeting in Beijing, which indicates that collective strategic research on the Asia-Pacific free trade zone has entered its final stage.

During this year’s APEC meeting, attendees will focus on Asia-Pacific economic integration, and will together reinforce the important role of the Asia-Pacific region in global economic growth.

Xi’s third Latin America trip and fourth attendance of an APEC Economic Leaders’Meeting will bring China more friends, cement its status in the world and provide more public goods for global governance and world development. With domestic development in China, countries have a chance to learn from each other and seek mutually beneficial cooperation. China will contribute wisdom and strength to peaceful development, and the world will get to witness these admirable efforts.

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

CULTIVATION OF RICE ORIGINATED IN YANGTZE RIVER: EXPERTS

The ancient cultivation of rice first originated in the mid-to-low reaches of the Yangtze River over 10,000 years ago, Chinese experts and scholars stated in a report released during a seminar on Nov. 9.

The scholars believe that the domestication of wild rice was the beginning of primitive agriculture, an its production, intake and storage were developed soon after. They added that the remains of rice plantations dating back 10,000 years, found in Wannian County, Jiangxi province, have proven the theory that rice originated in China.

The seminar, which was about the origin of rice cultivation in China, was held in Wannian County. The event served as a platform for experts and scholars to exchange updates on field-specific research, and to showcase recent archaeological achievements.

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

‘MAGIC DOCTOR’ BRINGS CHINESE MEDICINE TO PERU

Zhou Kexiu, a 69-year-old Chinese woman, has been practicing traditional Chinese acupuncture in Peru since 1989, winning the confidence of numerous patients. Besides treating patients at her clinic in the Peruvian capital of Lima, Zhou has frequently volunteered to provide medical services to remote regions of Peru. Zhou said she is obliged to promote traditional Chinese medicine to all Peruvians.

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

SONG DYNASTY TOMB UNEARTHED IN XINJIANG

A tomb that can be traced back to the Northern Song Dynasty (960—1127) was recently unearthed in Kuqa County, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region. The tomb was spotted at a construction site on Nov. 2. Located 6 meters beneath the ground, the tomb itself is about 3.3 meters long, 2.2 meters wide and 2.3 meters high.

Upon inspection, the tomb had clearly been ransacked. Judging from the broken bones and pottery fragments unearthed so far, archaeologists estimate that its resident lived during the Northern Song Dynasty. More concrete data will be revealed after detailed studies are performed.

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

MAN LIVES WITH REPLICA DOLL OF DECEASED WIFE

A widower named Zhang Wenliang in Chongzhou, Sichuan province takes constant solace in a silicon replica of his deceased wife. After Zhang’s wife passed away in August of 2015, the 70-year-old ordered a 16,000-RMB life-size doll from the Internet. He dressed the doll in his wife’s clothes and talked to it everyday, pretending his wife was still with him.

Touched by Zhang’s love and devotion, the manufacturer of the doll decided to customize a replica of his beloved for free. In addition, the manufacturer promised to provide lifetime maintenance. Zhang received the doll on Nov. 8, and stated that he was quite satisfied with it. He extended his thanks to the manufacturer.

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

TIBET LESS REMOTE AS WORLD’S HIGHEST ROAD TUNNEL OPENS

Builders on Thursday finished work on the world’s highest road tunnel on the Sichuan-Tibet highway.The tunnel passes through the main peak of Chola Mountain which is 6,168 m above sea level, shortening the time from Chengdu, capital of Sichuan Province, to Nagqu in Tibet by two hours, and avoiding the most dangerous section on the highway.[Photo: people.cn]

Builders on Thursday finished work on the world’s highest road tunnel on the Sichuan-Tibet highway.

The tunnel passes through the main peak of Chola Mountain which is 6,168 m above sea level, shortening the time from Chengdu, capital of Sichuan Province, to Nagqu in Tibet by two hours, and avoiding the most dangerous section on the highway.

The tunnel, with two lanes in each direction, has been under construction since 2012. It will open to traffic in 2017.

The current 40-km precipitous mountain highway in the Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Garze takes over two hours to traverse, with dangers from avalanches and rockfalls not to mention the extreme cold and low oxygen level.

Built at a cost of 1.15 billion yuan (170 million U.S. dollars), the 7-km tunnel only takes ten minutes to go through.

The highway will be able to accommodate 4,000 to 5,000 vehicles a day, as compared with around 1,500 before.

“It has been the most difficult tunnel that China Railway ever built,” said Yao Zhijun, chief engineer of the project.

Built in 1951, Sichuan-Tibet Highway was China’s first highway in Tibet. There are now two more major highways — the Qinghai-Tibet highway and Xinjiang-Tibet highway.

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

MAUSOLEUM IN EASTERN HAN DYNASTY FOUND IN HENAN PROVINCE

Recently, an excavation in the village of Xizhu in Luoyang, Henan province drew to a close. Archeologists said that a mausoleum found at the site may date back to the Cao Wei period in the Eastern Han Dynasty, over 1,000 years ago. Cao Wei was one of the three major states that competed for supremacy over China in the Three Kingdoms period.

The grave is approximately 52 meters long and 12 meters deep. More than 400 relics were unearthed from the site, including pottery, ironware, copper, wood, as well as a few pieces of lacquer and jade.

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

BANK OF COMMUNICATIONS ESTABLISHES LONDON BRANCH

The London branch of the Bank of Communications (BoComm) had its opening ceremony on Nov. 9, reinforcing the influence of China-funded banks in the British capital.

Song Shuguang, the chairman of board of supervisors of BoComm, referred to the branch as a “precious achievement” created by a sound China-U.K. financial and trade relationship.

The sub-center of BoComm’s financial market will also start running as the London branch of BoComm officially opens for business. This allows BoComm to better serve Chinese and British enterprises, making London a center for cross-border RMB transactions in Europe.

In this way, BoComm will contribute to a golden era of China-U.K. relations, as well as the building of “Belt and Road,” Song added.

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