China’s big cities push garbage sorting as example to rest of country

Megacities in China have enacted laws to encourage citizens to recycle, and waste sorting is soon to be compulsory in many Chinese cities.


Shanghai passed a law on household garbage control in January. The law, to come into effect on July 1, clearly defines four types of household waste, namely recyclable, hazardous, dry and wet waste.

Anyone who mixes garbage will be liable to a maximum fine of 200 yuan, and companies that break the law may face a maximum penalty of 50,000 yuan.

Beijing adopted new garbage sorting regulations in March 2012. This May, the city made several amendments to the law, punishing violations of garbage classification regulations.

Wu Xiangyang, an associate researcher at the Beijing Academy of Social Sciences, said that garbage classification in Beijing didn’t reach satisfactory results in the past, mostly because of the lack of legislative force. Now that anyone who disobeys the rules could face a penalty, more people will voluntarily sort out their own waste.

The law stipulates that schools, hospitals, office buildings and hotels in Beijing have to sort out waste; if not, they will be punished. In the future, the regulation will also be applied to residents, said Wu.

Starting from 2019, the garbage classification campaign will begin in county-level cities and above. By the end of 2025, all county-level cities and above will have developed a waste sorting system, according to relevant legal provisions.

To achieve this goal, it is essential for megacities to set a good example. However, megacities are still faced with challenges in garbage classification, such as residents’ reluctance to participate in garbage classification and relatively weak classification processing capabilities.

“Behavior is what matters most. Compulsory classification is the first step towards dealing with the problem. Of course, supervision and punishment are also necessary,” Wu said.

Cross-sea drone completes maiden delivery task

An unmanned fixed-wing aircraft completed a delivery task over the sea from Shanghai to Shengsi Island in east China’s Zhejiang province on May 29, reported on June 24.

The U650 amphibious seaplane, carrying a full load of mail, landed smoothly in the waters of Shengsi Island after traveling 110 kilometers in 52 minutes.

It took the drone producer, UVS Intelligence System based in Shanghai, and the client, China Post, about half a year to apply for approval from air traffic management authorities for the flight.

The drone maker said it plans to carry out more trial flights with its domestic clients to make sure that the delivery service is extendable to other islands in the Hangzhou Bay area.

Equal-footed dialogue is the only way for win-win cooperation

What does Washington’s imposition on $300 billion worth of more imported Chinese goods mean to the American people?

The possible price hikes of consumer goods, such as mobile phones, laptops, clothing, footwear, toys and gaming equipment will make American enterprises and consumers feel worried because their days will be different.

On June 17, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) kicked off a seven-day hearing, seemingly respecting public opinion. Such hearings have been held several times since the U.S. provoked the trade dispute with China.

However, it seems that tariffs will still be the trend, though they may lead to an increase in commodity prices, impact employment and disrupt corporation supply chains, as stated by industry representatives in their speeches during the hearings and the letters of opposition submitted to the USTR before each hearing.

So far, Washington has slapped 25% tariffs on $250 billion of Chinese goods.

During this round of hearings, the USTR received more than 2,000 written comments and talked with about 300 company and industry representatives. Some research institutes even testified with analytical data.

Consulting firm Trade Partnership Worldwide, LLC. said in a report prepared for the U.S. Consumer Technology Association that if the new tariffs were imposed, American consumers would pay over $8.1 billion more for cell phones and over $8.2 billion more for laptops and tablets.

China accounted for about 75 percent of the total cell phones and over 90 percent of the total laptops and tablets imported into the U.S., according to Trade Partnership Worldwide.

On any alternative location for production such as the U.S. and any alternative supplier, the American small business owners said earnestly that there is no other viable alternative. Some of them even cried worrying about what they are going to face.

Some large American enterprises have written letters to the government, asking the latter to bring the tariffs to an end.

“We urge the U.S. government not to impose tariffs on these products,” Apple Inc. said in a letter to the U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer.

The company said it’s responsible for 2 million jobs in the U.S. and reminded the government that it had pledged to invest $350 billion in the American economy over five years.

The U.S. government’s tariff increase will affect all its products, impact its global competitiveness, and reduce its U.S. economic contribution, Apple said.

The painful truth is that American people are not the one to make decisions. The decision makers, however, disappointed them again and again.

“If there’s a better idea than tariffs I’d like to hear it. I haven’t heard it,” Lighthizer told Senate Finance Committee at a congress hearing.

To justify the trade dispute they provoked, some American politicians said they did so to protect people’s livelihood, but the truth is that they never paid attention to the interests of the American people.

The American consumers have to shoulder the burden of higher spending associated with rising consumer prices, and the companies have to spend more because their global supply chains are disrupted.

The U.S. politicians are waving the tariff stick in an attempt to strengthen their so-called “industrial competitive advantage” without considering public opinion, national conditions, and the international economic order.

Claiming that they want to win the trade war, the American politicians can’t see the truth that they just won’t win at all. The international division of labor is not deliberately designed by any country, but by the laws of the market, in the context of economic globalization.

To gain benefits, one has to be righteous. Dialogue is the only way to resolve economic and trade issues between countries.

If the U.S. insists on escalating the trade war with no consideration of the interests of its own people, China will have to fight with it to the end.

China is resilient and can afford a trade war. If Washington chooses to talk, then it should talk with sincerity. The key for negotiation is to take care of each other’s legitimate concerns. In this regard, the U.S. must put a stop to tariffs imposed on Chinese products. It should also be aware that only mutual benefit and win-win cooperation could win support and confirms to the trend of the times.

Hanfu costumes enjoy stronger prevalence among younger generation


The custom of wearing hanfu has become increasingly popular, especially among the younger generation. Some people are fascinated by the fancy look of the clothes and others are attracted by the traditional culture surrounding it.

Characterized by loose, flowing robes that drape around the body, with sleeves that hang down to the knees, hanfu costumes were the dominant clothes until the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).

With the introduction of western fashion in China, hanfu culture was forgotten for a certain time in history until drama series have brought it back into the spotlight in recent years.

“Hanfu costumes are seeing growing prevalence among young people,” said Bao Huaimin, an expert of traditional clothes from University of Jinan in east China’s Shandong province.

There are about several thousand hanfu lovers in Jinan, who are between 13 and 25 years old, said Xie Mingli, who runs an experience store where hanfu costume lovers gather to try on clothes and take pictures.

Xie said many customers were drawn to her store by hanfu shows played on social media platforms. She hopes that Hanfu will come into daily life in the future so that people will feel more at ease when they wear hanfu costumes.

Domestic cosmetics flourish, aim for high-end market


Domestic cosmetics are becoming more popular thanks to their improving quality. In 2019, domestic brands took a 56 percent share of the market, according to a report released by Tencent in May.

For three consecutive years, the online sales of traditional skincare brand Pechoin ranked first among cosmetics brands sold on Taobao on Double 11, China’s biggest shopping festival.

The Tencent report indicated that 42 percent of consumers prefer domestic cosmetics brands to overseas brands, and 90 percent said they would continue to buy domestic cosmetics in the future.

Fei Qiwen, a marketing manager with Pechoin, attributed the increasing popularity of domestic products among consumers to the improved quality and the rich cultural background of the products.

However, despite the growing market and surging sales, domestic cosmetics are still less competitive than international brands in the high-end market, which includes names such as L’Oreal and Estée Lauder.

The number of high-end domestic brands is small, said Zhuang Mudi, an official in Shanghai who is familiar with industry and business administration.

However, some brands have already started to act. Shanghai Jahwa United Co Ltd, a Chinese consumer goods firm based in Shanghai, has engaged in building high-end brands such as Herborist, by investing more in research and development.

Cao Ping, chief of the R&D department of Shanghai Jahwa, pointed out that to compete with international brands, their products feature traditional herbal ingredients and adopt useful formulas derived from ancient medical books.

Whoever resists the historical trend will lose

The trade war provoked by the United States seems aggressive, and whether China can handle it or not has been the concern of various parties.

Although the answer is obviously “yes” based on the current situation, there are still a small number of U.S. worshipers shouting, “China can’t hold on.”

When the trade war just started, many people were not sure whether China could survive it, which was understandable. After all, the U.S. is a strong power, and its strikes on China seemed harsh and frightening. However, with effective countermeasures, China not only managed to weather trade bullying tactics, but also gave the bully a good hit in return. At this point, people started to believe that China could win the war.

To justify the trade war, the United States claims to be a victim in the global market. The truth is that America is undoubtedly the biggest beneficiary of economic globalization since the end of World War II. Along with globalization arose domestic issues, such as manufacturing outflows and fewer jobs.

To solve these problems requires strategic planning. America, however, resorted to trade bullying as a way to deal with them, forcing other countries and regions, including China, to make concessions. This is a dangerous move and will inevitably meet resistance. In fact, it is impossible for America to fight against China without hurting its own companies, workers and consumers.

While greedy America had no scruples about profiting from international trade, China impressed the world with the courage and composure to accept the challenge. Once again, China’s ability to handle pressure was tested and increased in the confrontation.

The reason why China can win the trade war lies in that China’s stance conforms to the historical trend. While the American government wants to take the same approach used in the 18th and 19th centuries to deal with the challenges brought by globalization, China has followed a path that suits the growing trend, which leads to economic growth.

Despite the trade bullying from America, China still adheres to its own path of development. It will continue to deepen reform and opening up, promoting the world economy and global governance.

The historical trend is irresistible. People who resist the historical pattern may get lucky and dodge the bullet temporarily. However, eventually, they will be weeded out in the flow of history.

Foreigners fascinated by Beijing Opera

( Haohao)

Hunan Library, the provincial library of central China’s Hunan province, held a Beijing Opera training class for foreigners in Changsha, the capital of the province on June 23, reported.

More than 120 international students and teachers from over 60 countries took part in the activity.

At the beginning of the course, Ge Qianqian, deputy director of the Peking Opera Protection and Inheritance Center of Hunan, introduced the origin of Peking Opera, and the roles and designs used in the opera.

The foreigners were invited on stage to try the unique costumes and make-up of Peking Opera. Sagada, a Pakistani graduate student in Central South University, said the teachers drew red patterns on his face. The characters usually wear red make-up in memory of Guan Yu, a loyal and brave general with a reddish face who lived during the Three Kingdoms period.

( Haohao)

The audience also watched Peking Opera performances, and face changing, a famous performance art in Sichuan Opera.

“I have never seen such wonderful performances. What impressed me most was Sun Wukong (the Monkey King). The actor wielded the Monkey King’s weapon Jingu Bang very skillfully,” said Sagada.

Nataliia from the UK, who is a teacher at a training institute in Yueyang, finds traditional Chinese culture fascinating. During the two-hour course, she learned the basic hand gestures and styles of walking in Peking Opera. She believes learning general knowledge about Peking Opera has enhanced her understanding of the performance.

Asian countries popularize literature to facilitate regional exchanges

People read books during the 2017 Beijing Book Fair at the old hall of China International Exhibition Center in Beijing, capital of China, Jan. 12, 2017.  (Xinhua/Wang Jingsheng)

The mutual translation and publication of classics among Asian countries have promoted cultural exchanges in the region. To date, China has signed contracts with 18 Asian countries on the mutual translation project, including India and the United Arab Emirates.

In recent years, China has been expanding book trade with other Asian countries. For example, in 2018 China imported copyrights of more than 1,800 books from other Asian countries and exported copyrights of more than 5,300 books.

Under the mutual translation project, more than 70 books have been mutually translated and published so far, allowing people from different nations to understand each other better.

Lin Fengmin, an expert in Arabic literature, explained that before the project, many Arabs were eager to learn more about China, but as the books were either translated from English or French or written by westerners, Arab people couldn’t easily learn about Chinese life.

The mutual translation project came just at the right time. So far, 23 Chinese books have been introduced to Arab countries, and the Chinese versions of 19 books from Arab countries have also been published in China.

In 2007, the Arabic version of Decoded by Mai Jia was launched at the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair. Many local readers and reporters attended the launch.

Chinese readers welcome books from other Asian countries. A book by a Pakistani archaeologist about Buddhism scored 8.4 points on Douban, a Chinese social networking website.

More Asian countries such as Malaysia, Vietnam and Singapore are expected to become the members of the program soon.

Self-driving technology makes progress in auto industry

An autonomous concept vehicle on display during the Beijing auto show in 2018.  [Photo by Long Wei/China Daily]

A remote-controlled car powered by 5G has wowed spectators as it successfully made a left turn, avoided barriers and backed into a parking lot, all controlled by a person 1,000 kilometers away.

The signal transmission delay stayed within one millisecond, said an employee with Datang Mobile Communications Equipment Co. Ltd, who presented the technology at the recently concluded Third World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, northeastern China.

Another highlight at the conference was Muse, a concept autonomous vehicle manufactured by ICONIQ Motors, an emerging Chinese car brand. The car does not have a steering wheel. All the driver needs to do is to input the destination, and the car will drive there with the guidance of a highly accurate navigation system.

“The traditional automobile industry is in transition. Self-driving cars and intelligent connected vehicles are building a bright future for the industry,” said Carsten Breitfeld, CEO of ICONIQ.

China has marched into a new chapter of self-driving technology, said Du Zhibin, director of China Automotive Technology and Research Center Co., Ltd. Automotive Data Center.

Self-driving technology is speeding up the transformation from theory to practice. John Hopcroft, an academician with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, believes that driving jobs may disappear completely with the development of autonomous driving technology.

Self-driving technology won’t stop with passenger vehicles. For example, a self-driving tractor recently completed road tests in Changsha, Hunan province. Equipped with an intelligent system, the tractor can work automatically, plowing fields without the need for human intervention.

Shenyang-Dalian expressway: China’s first expressway

(File photo)

In the 1980s, industrial development in northeast China’s Liaoning province occurred rapidly. However, at the same time transportation infrastructure lagged behind the economic growth.

In 1983, the Ministry of Transport approved an expressway project connecting Shenyang, the capital of northeast China’s Liaoning province, and Dalian, a coastal city in the same province. On June 27, 1984, the construction began.

The expressway is 375 kilometers in length. As the first of its kind in China, the Shenyang-Dalian expressway is a 4-lane dual carriageway with a designed speed of 120 kilometers per hour.

64-year-old Xue Jingwei, a designer of the project, recalled that back in that time the decision-makers had hesitated to build the road.

“People didn’t understand why they had to pay toll fees to drive through the expressway, which made us worry whether the project could generate revenue, at least to cover the construction costs,” he said.

But the expressway was an inevitable choice under the urgent need of transportation improvement.

The construction was a tough task. The designers first drew the route on a map, and then measured the distance on site. There was a shortage of calculators and some designers could only use abacuses for calculation.

Xue said the average road construction was 2 km per day, a speed he regarded fast even today.

On Sept. 1, 1990, the Shenyang-Dalian expressway opened to traffic. The expressway has a daily traffic capacity of 50,000 vehicles, and annual passenger and freight transport volumes of 130 million people and 80 million tons of cargo, respectively.

Compared with other highways, the expressway could reduce travel time by more than half, said Xue.