E-commerce giant to invest $3.1 billion to boost northeast China

Liu Qiangdong, chairman of e-commerce giant JD.com, says his company will invest over 20 billion yuan ($3.1 billion) to boost the economy in northeast China by promoting industrial upgrade, creating new jobs, and improving retail services, Beijing-based news.ynet.com reported.

Liu is full of confidence that his group will play a role in revitalizing northeast China. Earlier this week, Liu met with officials from the three northeastern provinces and discuss details about future cooperation with them.

JD also signed a strategic agreement with Heilongjiang Beidahuang Agriculture Company Limited based in Harbin, the capital city of Heilongjiang province.

The two companies agreed to boost the use of unmanned aerial vehicles, or drones, for delivery in Heilongjiang. They also plan to apply drones to agricultural management.

JD’s development model is highly in line with the national strategy of revitalizing northeast China, which clearly states to actively implement the Internet Plus Action Plan, promote e-commerce, boost the chains of supply and demand, and advance modern agriculture in northeast China.

People’s Daily launches Xiongan website

Yang Zhenwu (2nd from right), president of People’s Daily, Wang Dongfeng (2nd from left), secretary of the Hebei Provincial Committee of the CPC, Lu Xinning, deputy editor-in-chief of People’s Daily (1st from right) and Chen Gang, director of the Xiongan New Area administrative committee attend the ceremony.

The online news provider of the Xiongan New Area, a new economic zone southwest of Beijing, was launched on Jan. 16, in a bid to expand media coverage about the area. The website is guided by the People’s Daily and operated by people.cn.

News, policies, data, people, pictures, and other information provided by the website will offer a comprehensive look at Xiongan New Area.

A mobile app of the website was also revealed. At the launching ceremony, People’s Daily signed a strategic agreement with the administrative committee of Xiongan New Area on the construction of a cultural media platform to better publicize construction of the new area.

The website has also launched its English, Russian, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, and Portuguese versions. The Xiongan New Area has also opened accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other overseas social media platforms.

Yang Zhenwu gives a speech at the ceremony.

Yang Zhenwu, president of People’s Daily, Wang Dongfeng, secretary of the Hebei Provincial Committee of the CPC, and other officials with People’s Daily and Hebei Province kicked off the website.

Yang expressed his hope for enhancing cooperation and jointly boosting construction of the Xiongan New Area in a speech delivered to the ceremony.

The first goal is to catch the opportunity to better report the area, and set a new example of media partnership between People’s Daily and local governments. To achieve this, Yang said People’s Daily will mobilize its media platforms to help build a first-class media project in the industry.

The second goal is to tell Xiongan stories, draw a beautiful future for Xiongan, and strongly support the area to attract more talents. The third goal is to deeply present the development concept of Xiongan, and to help the construction concept of Xiongan to reach more readers around the globe.

Wang Dongfeng gives a speech at the ceremony.

Wang Dongfeng noted that the establishment of the media center is conducive to spreading Xiongan’s voice to the world and creating a sound public opinion environment for the Xiongan New Area. Hebei is dedicated to building the media center into a first-class media platform with international reputation and influence. The provincial party committee and government will give full-fledge support to the center.


Shanghai rolls out more policies to introduce foreign talents

The Ministry of Public Security and the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government have rolled out a plan to woo more overseas high-end talents to work in Shanghai, Chinanews.com reported on Jan 17.

More convenience to apply for permanent Shanghai residency will be provided for core foreign members at top research institutions in Shanghai, said Lou Pengying, deputy director of the Entry and Exit Department under the Public Security Bureau of Shanghai.

Foreign talents will be encouraged to make innovations and start businesses in Shanghai, breaking the restriction that they can work for only one company at a time.

Meanwhile, excellent foreign graduates will be entitled to apply for two-year residency and those who have worked for three consecutive years and satisfy certain qualifications can apply for permanent residency in Shanghai.

Gao Ziping with the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences pointed out that in addition to just inviting individuals, more talent groups are being targeted, which is a big breakthrough.

Lou disclosed that Shanghai will plan the country’s first exit and entry affairs center, in order to help foreign talents live and work in Shanghai.

China’s regional jets receive first order from Africa

The China-developed twin-engine regional jet ARJ21 has just received its first order from Africa, according to Chinese news site ThePaper.cn.

As the first customer of the aircraft in Africa, the Republic of Congo sent a delegation of seven officials to China at the invitation of Civil Aviation Administration of China, in a bid to promote bilateral cooperation of civil aviation between the two countries.

The group, led by Congo Republic’s Minister of Transport, Civil Aviation and the Merchant Marine Fidele Dimou, arrived at Chengdu, southwestern China’s Sichuan province, to experience the performance of ARJ21 on a test flight flown by Chengdu Airlines.

Dimou said to experience the flight is the best way to examine the reliability and comfort of the plane.

He noted to accelerate the aviation industry is a national will of the Congo Republic. And he believes in the quality of Chinese products, so the country did not hesitate at all before signing the deal.

“I hope Chengdu Airlines could carry out cooperation with their counterparts in Congo Republic, and help us to better operate the ARJ21 aircraft through its experiences and expertise,” Dimou said.

“We are the first African customer of ARJ21. But I’m sure that Chinese regional jets will receive more orders in the future,” Dimou remarked.

Dimou’s wishes to the ARJ 21 jet

Chinese carmaker ditches Trumpchi model name to avoid Trump link

Chinese carmaker Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., Ltd. (GAC) is changing its brand name Trumpchi to avoid potential link to US President Donald Trump as it plans to tap the US market next year.

Trumpchi, which sold its first model on the Chinese market on December 12, 2010, has no connection with the US president, according to GAC.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday that the automobile group wants to be the first Chinese carmaker to enter the US market, and Trumpchi is expected to be one of its most prosperous brands.

However, it was decided to ditch the “Trump” name because it is too politically charged for its US venture, the report said.

Earlier this year, the GAC Motor Design Director Zhang Fan told Reuters: “We saw people were laughing at this and took pictures looking only at this detail, and also put on Facebook or other websites.”

In the case of Trumpchi, however, the name appears simply to be a translation spin-off from its Chinese name which is Chuanqi, which is a play on the word “legendary” and loosely translates as “spreading good fortune.”

After receiving negative feedback, the company decided to change it, said Yu Jun, a senior manager of the group.

The company is still working on a new name, Yu added.

Chongqing’s new gold rush

People in Tanghe Township of Jiangjin District in southwest China’s Chongqing are keen on digging out distinctive stones (a new jade type) with high selenium content, Chongqing Morning Post reported on Jan. 15.

The distinctive rock was authenticated as jade by China’s National Gemstone Testing Center and its selenium content was tested to be as high as 0.021 percent. A 1 kilogram piece found by a villager was sold at the high price of 4,000 yuan ($622).

The authority proposed to promote the jade in 2017, because reserves of precious jade types such as Hetian have been decreasing in recent years, Chen Lu, an employee at the local gem and jade industry association introduced.

Chen suggested that the new jade type first get an official name on the basis of national standards and local features to make it an industrial bright spot of the city.

Most importantly, the city should promote the artistic value of the jade. For example, the Sichuan Fine Arts Institute in Chongqing has set up a jade carving major, indicating the growing importance of the jade carving industry, said Chen.

Hu Lan, vice director at the local tourism administration, noted that the new jade type still needs to be explored and promoted, as its reserves, distribution range, and market value are still unknown.\


China’s retail sales expected to surpass that of U.S. this year

China’s retail sales are expected to surpass sales in the United States for the first time in 2018 due to innovation and transformation of China’s retail enterprises, says China’s Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM), according to official microblog of China News on Jan. 16.

The growth is another definitive marker of China’s rise to economic superpower status, the Washington Post recently reported.

The U.S. media reports retail sales in China are on track to hit just over $5.8 trillion this year, according to Mizuho, a Japanese bank. It’s a stunning rise from a decade ago, when retail sales in China were only a quarter of those in the United States.

MOFCOM says the development of China’s retail sector is mainly attributed to innovation and transformation of China’s retail enterprises. For example, the retail sector is actively developing online and offline sales.

Statistics released by China Internet Network Information Center show that as of December 2016, 45.3 percent of Chinese enterprises have sold their products online, up 12.7 percent compared to 2015.

In addition, brick-and-mortar retailers and e-commerce businesses are seeking cooperation.

For example, Chinese online giant Alibaba has attracted department store chain Intime Retail and major retailer Bailian to sell their products on its e-commerce platform. Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com also joined hands with Walmart and Yonghui superstores to boost their sales volume.

Also, Chinese retailers are developing unmanned shops. Taking Suning as an example, the Chinese online shopping platform launched five unmanned shops in China, which apply facial recognition technology to payment services and offer customers an intelligent shopping experience based on their consumption habits.

Xiang Jiangxu, president of Suning Technology Research Institute, noted that owing to China’s huge consumer group and favorable policies and regulations, the achievements of applied innovation are being rapidly promoted in China.

By contrast, American retailer enterprises are facing depression.

Data by Fung Global Retail & Technology shows that U.S. retailers have closed the doors on 6,985 retail shops by 2017.

Sears disclosed that it will shut down about 100 department stores this year, and U.S. retail giant Macy’s announced it will close 78 of its shops and cut the number of its employees in response to the pressure caused by rising online sales and the reduced number of shoppers at physical stores.

Media center for China’s Xiongan New Area inaugurated

Wang Dongfeng (left) and Yang Zhenwu attend the inauguration ceremony.

The media center for China’s Xiongan New Area was officially inaugurated on Jan. 16.

Wang Dongfeng, secretary of the Hebei Provincial Committee of the Communist Party of China, and Yang Zhenwu, president of People’s Daily, attended the inauguration ceremony.

The media center, which is jointly operated by People’s Daily and the administrative committee of Xiongan New Area, started a pilot run last September. Through innovative mechanisms, the center has provided tremendous support for the construction of Xiongan New Area with a variety of news report and authoritative policy interpretations, Yang noted in his speech.

Yang Zhenwu addresses the ceremony.

Yang introduced that People’s Daily and Hebei Province share a close bond with each other, since the initial publication of the newspaper was made in Heibei’s Pingshan County 70 years ago.

Yang said that while standing on a new position of history and facing a new historical mission, People’s Daily will stay true to itself, and spare no effort to help create a better future for Xiongan New Area.

Wang Dongfeng addresses the ceremony.

Wang Dongfeng noted that the establishment of the media center is conducive to spreading Xiongan’s voice to the world and creating a sound public opinion environment for the Xiongan New Area. Hebei is dedicated to building the media center into a first-class media platform with international reputation and influence. The provincial party committee and government will give full-fledge support to the center.

news website and a mobile news app tailored for the Xiongan New Area were also launched at the inauguration ceremony.