BRICS Bank to finance 2 infrastructure projects in China and India

The New Development Bank (NDB) of the BRICS countries is set to finance two more projects in energy and road construction, in China and India, to the tune of $640 million, according to Kundapur Vaman Kamath, head of the bank.

The first agenda item is to build a wind power project, the Putian Pinghai Bay Offshore Wind Power Project, costing 2 billion RMB ($290 million); the second is to repair 1,500 kilometers of roads as part of India’s Madhya Pradesh Major District Roads Project, costing $350 million.

The Putian Pinghai Bay Offshore Wind Power Project is one of the largest offshore wind farms in the country. The facility is expected to generate 873 million kwh of electricity each year, cutting 870,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year.

The bank has so far approved seven projects, covering all its member countries and totaling $1.5 billion, according to the bank’s deputy head and chief operating officer Zhu Xian. In addition, the bank has approved the financing plan for 2017, stating that it is ready to finance another $2.5 billion worth of projects.

Liu Yandong: Build a “Spiritual High-speed Rail” for Connectivity between Chinese and German People

On November 25, 2016 local time, Vice Premier Liu Yandong inspected the Confucius Institute at the Free University of Berlin and held discussions with Directors of some Confucius Institutes in Germany.

Liu Yandong visited the exhibition “300 Hundred Years of Chinese in Germany”, the photo exhibition showcasing outcomes of the 18 Confucius Institutes in Germany and the exhibition “Chinese Students in Germany”. She observed Chinese-teaching classes, and earnestly listened to opinions and suggestions proposed by Directors of all Confucius Institutes in Germany on such topics as deepening cooperation between Chinese and German universities, international cooperation in sinology research and cultivation of local Chinese teachers.

Liu Yandong expressed that leaders of both countries pay high attention to exchanges on language education and the development of the Confucius Institute. Chancellor Angela Merkel personally attended the inauguration ceremony of the Confucius Institute at Fachhochschule Stralsund University of Applied Sciences this August, showing the high importance to the construction of the Confucius Institute and China-Germany cultural exchanges. Under the joint promotion of leaders of both countries, Confucius Institutes in Germany have continuously expanded, building a “spiritual high-speed rail” for connectivity between the Chinese and German people.

Liu Yandong noted that current China-Germany relations enjoy sound development, and the width, depth and heat of bilateral exchanges and cooperation have reached an unprecedented level. With increasingly frequent exchanges between both peoples, the Confucius Institute will play a more prominent role, and sinologists’ missions of promoting communication and enhancing understanding will become heavier. It is hoped that we all could continue to give play to respective advantages, make good use of the Confucius Institute, actively participate in the Confucius China Studies Program, and cultivate a new generation of young sinologists, so as to introduce a real, multi-dimensional and comprehensive China to people.

Liu Yandong stressed that the Confucius Institute is an institution for equal cooperation, mutual benefit and win-win results between China and foreign countries and an open, transparent and inclusive platform. We will make joint efforts with all sides to, with an open and inclusive attitude, give play to the platform role of Confucius Institute in spreading culture, communicating mind and promoting exchanges and mutual learning among different civilizations, and strive to provide better service to people of all circles in learning Chinese and understanding China. It is hoped that everyone could care for and support the Confucius Institute as always, and create a sound environment for the healthy and sustainable development of the Confucius Institute.

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

Liu Yandong Meets with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany

On November 25, 2016 local time, Vice Premier Liu Yandong met with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany at German Chancellery in Berlin.

Liu Yandong conveyed greetings from President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang to Angela Merkel. Liu Yandong said that with constant and in-depth development, current China-Germany relations walk in the forefront of the development of China-Europe relations. High-level exchanges between both countries are particularly frequent in 2016, effectively enhancing political mutual trust and bilateral pragmatic cooperation. My visit, firstly, is to attend the 7th Hamburg Summit and the closing event of the Year of China-Germany Youth Exchange upon invitation; and secondly, is to implement the important consensus reached between Chinese leaders and you and deepen China-Germany people-to-people and cultural exchanges and cooperation. China is willing to make joint efforts with Germany to push for the early establishment of a high-level people-to-people and cultural exchange mechanism, so as to boost bilateral exchanges and cooperation in education, science, technology, culture, sports, football and other areas. Germany will take over the presidency of the G20 in a few days, and China is willing to actively cooperate with Germany to ensure the success of the G20 Hamburg Summit as well.

Angela Merkel asked Liu Yandong to convey her greetings to President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang. She once again congratulated China on successfully hosting the G20 Hangzhou Summit, and hoped that President Xi Jinping will attend the G20 Hamburg Summit in 2017. Angela Merkel expressed that Germany is willing to cooperate closely with China to promote the G20 Hamburg Summit for a success. She is pleased to see that the consensus reached between leaders of both countries on strengthening cooperation in football is being implemented and has made substantial progress. Germany is willing to provide assistance to China’s football development within its capacity. At present, bilateral relations maintain a sound development momentum, and both sides should further strengthen exchanges between the young people of both countries. Germany supports both sides to set up a high-level people-to-people and cultural exchange mechanism.

Before the meeting, Liu Yandong and Angela Merkel took a group photo with representatives of signatories of the China-Germany football cooperation agreement.

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

Liu Yandong Attends China-Germany Forum for Higher Education, Science and Innovation

On November 25, 2016 local time, Vice Premier Liu Yandong attended the China-Germany Forum for Higher Education, Science and Innovation hosted by the Free University of Berlin and delivered a speech.

Liu Yandong stated that since China and Germany established diplomatic relations 44 years ago, through joint efforts, both countries have established an all-round strategic partnership and achieved increasingly closer cooperation in areas such as education, science and technology, which have provided strong support to the development of both economies and become the highlight of China-Germany people-to-people and cultural exchanges. At present, China’s development faces the arduous tasks of shift in driving force, mode transformation and structural adjustment. The Chinese government puts education and innovation at the heart of development, regards talents as the first recourse to support development and sees innovation as the first and foremost driver of development and the “golden key” of breaking limitations in economic growth and opening up future growth potentials, hence vigorously implementing the innovation-driven development strategy. Both China and Germany share the tradition of valuing education and promoting innovation. The complementarity of innovation cooperation between both countries far outweighs the competitiveness, thus leaving huge potential for future cooperation.

Liu Yandong expressed that joining efforts for innovation and common development is the consensus reached by both Chinese and German leaders. Both sides should join hands to promote innovative development and fire up the “innovation engine” of the global economy. Both sides should deepen China-Germany innovation policy dialogues, strengthen top-level design, facilitate docking of strategies, promote policy coordination and establish sharing platforms. The two sides should guide practical cooperation in innovation, enhance cooperation in such fields as advanced manufacturing, new energy, semiconductor lighting, new energy vehicles, rail transit, biotechnology, next-generation information technology and the internet of things and explore third-party markets together. Both countries should facilitate in-depth development of people-to-people and cultural exchanges, deepen communication and cooperation in areas including education, science and technology, culture, sports and healthcare, and support cooperation in innovation and entrepreneurship between young peoples. The two sides should make concerted efforts to cope with challenges faced by mankind, encourage and promote coordination between higher education institutions and research institutions of both countries so as to deal with global challenges including climate change, major diseases, epidemics prevention and control, food safety, resource conservation and environment protection, and jointly implement the innovation blueprint made during the G20 Summit. It is hoped that higher education institutions, research institutions and enterprises of both sides can closely cooperate and make new contributions to the innovation causes of both countries and the development of China-Germany all-round strategic partnership.

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

Liu Yandong: China-Germany Football Cooperation Enjoys Broad Prospects

On November 26, 2016 local time, Vice Premier Liu Yandong attended the China-Germany Football Development Symposium at FC Cologne Club in Germany.

At the symposium, President of German Football League (DFL) Reinhard Rauball, DFL CEO Christian Seifert, General Secretary of German Football Association Friedrich Curtius and principals from FC Cologne, FC Bayern Munich, FC Schalke 04 and other clubs delivered speeches respectively, introducing the training system for teenagers in German professional football leagues and the youth training pattern in their clubs. They expressed their expectation and confidence in strengthening Germany-China football cooperation as well as their willingness to strengthen cooperation partnership, exchanges and mutual learning with China to promote and revitalize the football cause on the basis of relevant documents signed between Germany and China. Representatives from FC Shandong Luneng Taishan and FC Liaoning Hongyun also introduced their experience in working together with the German football circle.

Liu Yandong said that the wonderful speeches let her learn more about Germany’s experience in football development and look forward to China-Germany football cooperation. During his visit to Germany in March, 2014, President Xi Jinping made a special visit to junior Chinese football players trained in Germany, encouraging more teenagers to devote themselves to football. Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany expressed the willingness of reinforcing bilateral football cooperation during her recent two visits to China. One of the important missions for my visit to Germany is to implement the important consensus of both leaders and promote China-Germany football cooperation. Yesterday, Chancellor Angela Merkel and I held a friendly meeting on boosting China-Germany relations, including football cooperation. Both sides signed cooperation documents at three levels including government, football association and campus football, marking a new step in the strategic cooperation in football between China and Germany.

Liu Yandong said that Germany enjoys a long-standing football culture with a sophisticated youth training system and advanced experience. China boasts a long history of football as the birthplace of ancient football “Cuju”; however, its modern football started relatively late and needs constant efforts to catch up. The revitalization of football in China is highly expected by hundreds of millions of Chinese football fans. Chinese leaders attach great importance to sports and have explicitly urged the revitalization of football in China. We have taken a substantial step in the structural reform of China’s football. China is now vigorously developing campus football. By 2020, China will have more than 70 thousand football fields, 50 thousand trained football teachers in campus and 20 thousand football-specialized middle and primary schools. We encourage the participation of social sectors in football development and beef up the development of the football industry to drive the development of all kinds of sport industries. It is hoped that through a period of efforts, China’s football will achieve the “football dream” in the hearts of football fans and the general public. I hope that China and Germany will build a stable and sustained strategic cooperation partnership in football, advance exchanges between both national teams and professional football clubs, jointly make a bigger cake of mutual benefit and win-win results in the football industry, and further improve the exchange and cooperation mechanism of youth football. It is believed that with the joint efforts of both sides, China-Germany football cooperation will yield fruitful results, which will not only benefit the two peoples but also make contributions to the development of world football cause.

After the symposium, Liu Yandong watched the training match of the junior team of FC Cologne and communicated with the players in a friendly manner.

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

Stephen Hawking encourages China to build hadron collider

Many renowned Chinese and foreign physicists have joined a discussion about whether China should build a next-generation large hadron collider. Britain physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking is encouraging China to do just that.

“China has an incredible opportunity to become the world leader here — don’t waste it. A good example is to build the Great Collider that can lead high energy physics for the next fifty years,” Hawking wrote.

Well-known mathematician Shing-Tung Yau is in favor of Hawking’s suggestion, and proposed that China choose a place near Shanhai Pass in Qinhuandao, Hebei province as its building site. Meanwhile, Chen Ning Yang, Nobel Laureate in Physics, openly opposed the idea in September, though Wang Yifang, director of the Institute of High-Energy Physics (IHEP) under the Chinese Academy of Sciences, refuted Chen’s objections.

The discussion goes beyond China’s borders. Philip Warren Anderson, an American physicist and Nobel laureate, is among the opponents of the plan, while David Jonathan Gross, an American theoretical physicist and string theorist, is a proponent.

Also important to mention is that the world’s current largest hadron collider is the LHC at CERN. It helped scientists to discover the Higgs boson, which is regarded as the last building block of the model.

Below is the original text by Hawking:

Particle physics is definitely not a dying field. It is however an entirely different enterprise than it was in 1980. Since then, the standard model looks to be essentially confirmed and this may give the impression that the field is complete. However, that is far from being true. There are phenomena that are just not included in the standard model. Some are CP violation, neutrino oscillations, dark matter. In theory, the problems are immense: how to include gravity, the recently discovered dualities of quantum field theories, quark confinement, dark energy, black holes, early-universe cosmology. It is a different world but one that offers huge challenges to ambitious young people interested in how our Universe works. China has an incredible opportunity to become the world leader here — don’t waste it. A good example is to build the Great Collider that can lead high energy physics for the next fifty years.

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

More healthy young men choose to preserve sperm in bank

Between 2014 and September of this year, as many as 23 healthy young men voluntarily opted for reproductive insurance in the form of preserving their own sperm at a sperm bank in Zhejiang province. Over half of them are unmarried.

According to Tang Feng, a director at the sperm bank, this sperm-freezing service used to be utilized mainly by people who suffered from diseases. But the customers have changed over the years. The number of men who come in asking about the service keeps growing.Most of them are between 25 and 30 years old.

The major reason behind the phenomenon is that many young men are deciding to postpone getting married and focus their energies on a career. They want to preserve their most active sperm for later — when they want to start a family, Tang added.

Current lifestyles have something to do with the decreasing quality of sperm. Excessive use of smartphones or other electronic devices, frequent visits to the sauna, estrogen in food,smoking and drinking are all partially to blame, the director said.

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

Xi Jinping Returns to Beijing after Concluding His Visits

On November 25, 2016, President Xi Jinping returned to Beijing after concluding his state visits to the Republic of Ecuador, the Republic of Peru and the Republic of Chile and attendance at the 24th APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting held in Lima of Peru.

President Xi Jinping’s wife Mme. Peng Liyuan, member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and Director of the Policy Research Office of the CPC Central Committee Wang Huning, member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee, member of the Secretariat of the CPC Central Committee and Director of the General Office of the CPC Central Committee Li Zhanshu, State Councilor Yang Jiechi and other delegation members arrived by the same plane.

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

Xi Jinping Meets with Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria of Spain

On November 24, 2016 local time, President Xi Jinping met in Gran Canaria of Spain with Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria of Spain.

Xi Jinping asked Soraya Saenz de Santamaria to convey his sincere greetings and best wishes to King Felipe VI and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. Xi Jinping pointed out that at present, China-Spain relations enjoy sound development. As the two countries are both at an important stage of development and reform, China and Spain enjoy broad prospects for cooperation in such areas as economy, trade, investment and people-to-people and cultural exchanges. China attaches great importance to bilateral relations and is willing to work together with Spain to actively push for a sound, steady and sustained development of bilateral relations. China and Spain should keep close high-level exchanges so as to enhance mutual understanding and political mutual trust. Both sides should boost practical cooperation and fully tap the potential for cooperation in such areas as agriculture, science and technology, clean energy and tourism. China welcomes Spain’s active participation in mutually beneficial cooperation within the framework of the “Belt and Road” initiative. The two countries should also beef up people-to-people and cultural exchanges so as to consolidate the public opinion foundation of bilateral friendship.

Xi Jinping stressed that mutually beneficial cooperation between China and the EU accords with the interests of both sides, and China firmly supports the European integration process. China is committed to building the four major partnerships of peace, growth, reform and civilization as well as deepening practical cooperation with the EU, and hopes that Spain will play a greater role in pushing forward China-EU relations in a sustained and steady way.

Soraya Saenz de Santamaria conveyed warm regards from King Felipe VI and Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy. Agreeing with Xi Jinping’s comments on bilateral relations, Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said that Spain cherishes its traditional friendship with China and stands ready to work with China to maintain close high-level contact, deepen practical cooperation in fields including economy, trade, finance, science and technology, and tourism, intensify people-to-people and cultural exchanges and strengthen coordination in international affairs. The country is also ready to continue serving as a bridge for strengthening EU-China relations.

Yang Jiechi and others attended the meeting.

Xi Jinping made a technical stop in Gran Canaria of Spain on his way back to China after concluding his state visit to Chile.

On the morning of November 23 local time, Xi Jinping left Chile. Upon departure, senior officials of the Chilean government saw Xi Jinping and his wife Mme. Peng Liyuan off at the airport.

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

Liu Yandong Meets with Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier of Germany

On November 24, 2016 local time, Vice Premier Liu Yandong, who was attending the 7th Hamburg Summit in Germany, met with Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier of Germany.

Liu Yandong expressed that at present, China and Germany maintain a sound momentum of development in bilateral relations. The close high-level exchanges between both countries not only enhance political mutual trust, but vigorously push for fruitful outcomes from cooperation in various fields. Both sides share tremendous potential and broad prospects in further deepening mutually beneficial cooperation. The Chinese side is willing to join hands with Germany to, in the spirit of mutual respect and win-win cooperation, constantly consolidate political mutual trust, deepen practical cooperation and properly handle divergence in a bid to push bilateral relations for constant and new progress. The two countries should create a more convenient market environment as well as a more reasonable and friendlier public opinion environment to promote two-way investment and jointly oppose trade and investment protectionism. Activities under the Year of China-Germany Youth Exchange are a highlight in China-Germany relations this year. Both countries should further coordinate and facilitate exchanges and cooperation in such fields as science and technology, education, culture, tourism, youths and football, so as to provide inexhaustible impetus for the ever-lasting and stable development of bilateral relations. China attaches importance to developing its relations with Europe, and hopes that Germany, as a core and major country in the EU, could exert great influence in advancing the EU to fulfill its obligations under Article 15 of the Protocol on the Accession of China to the World Trade Organization as well as other issues and inject more positive energy into the development of China-EU relations.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier said that Germany and China enjoy sound and close relations. Under the current international political and economic situation, Germany and China should continue to strengthen cooperation, which is of great significance. German enterprises have deep interests in investing in China, and also welcome Chinese enterprises to continue to make investment and launch cooperation in Germany. It is believed that the two countries could resolve disputes through dialogues, so as to ensure the continuous and smooth development of bilateral relations. The German side is in favor of reinforcing bilateral people-to-people and cultural exchanges and encouraging more youths to become envoys of Germany-China friendship. Germany is willing to play a positive role in advancing EU-China relations.

Both sides agreed to establish China-Germany high-level people-to-people and cultural exchange mechanism as soon as possible.

After the meeting, Liu Yandong and Frank-Walter Steinmeier jointly attended the closing ceremony of Year of China-Germany Youth Exchange.

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