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Market expectations for interest rate cuts have been rising in

 China after Spring Festival. Before embarking on their next move in interest rate reform, however, policymakers need to assess dom

estic macroeconomic conditions in order to reduce financing costs. It is more urgent to let the financial market determine the lending rate, Sun said.

“We hope (policy fine-tuning) will not surprise the market when it is introduced,” Sun said.

Communication with other countries is also needed before launching new policies or introdu

cing creative monetary policy tools, and “the PBOC has good communication mechanisms with other c

entral banks including the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank”, Sun said.

Last year, the PBOC removed some constraints on credit, including liquidity in

jection through cutting the reserve requirement ratio four times and capital rep

lenishment by allowing commercial banks to issue perpetual bonds, which have no maturity rate, he said.

Chinese commercial banks, however, are still using the one-year lending rate of 4.35 percent — th

e rate commercial banks charge businesses — set by the central bank in 2015. It is higher than in

terbank market rates or the interest rates banks have been paying to the central bank of 3.05 to 3.30 percent.

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hina refutes report of contact with Venezuelan opposition

ina said on Wednesday that it hoped relevant media would report news abiding by principles of being objective and fair.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying made the remarks when asked for comments on The Wall Street Jo

urnal reporting that Chinese diplomats had contact with Venezuelan opposition representatives in Washington.

“Recently, some media have been cooking up fake news. I don’t know what the purpose is,” said Hua at a press br

iefing. “We hope relevant media will report news abiding by principles of being objective and fair.”

As for the current Venezuela issue, China advocates seeking a political settlement through dialogue and consultation, Hua said.

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Reportcan extenChina has the capacity to extend local governm

ment bond issuance or implement more tax cuts, Economic Information Daily reported Wednesday, citing the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

A total of 2.61 trillion yuan ($386.46 billion) of bond quota was unused by the end of 2018, accounting for 14.1 percent of total local debt, the academy said in a report.

This means China can extend bond issuance, or undertake 14 percent of tax and fee cuts.

The debt balance stood at 18.39 trillion yuan at the end of last year, well below the official ceil

ing of 21 trillion yuan, and accounting for 109 percent of total fiscal revenue of local governments.

In 2018 local authorities raised a total of 4.17 trillion yuan through bond issuance, down from 4.36 trill

ion yuan in 2017, according to the Ministry of Finance. The local debt ratio was 76.6 percent last ye

ar, significantly lower than the international warning line of 100-120 percent.

Last year local governments’ implicit debt risk was controlled effectively, however, the total debt level was still huge, the academy said.

In 2018 new explicit debts rose 13.5 percent to 2.18 trillion yuan, while the in-balance-sh

eet interest payment reached 734.5 billion yuan, with a 17.1 percent growth rate, about 2.75 times that of fiscal revenue.

A rapid increase in interest payments put pressure on future fiscal guarantees and service capacity, the academy added.

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The central authorities plan to adopt the National VIemission

The bureau is soliciting public opinion on the draft until Feb 20.

With the new standard, major polluting gas from light-duty vehicles, including ca

rbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, will be reduced by about 50 percent and em

issions of particulate matter will be reduced by about 40 percent, according to the bureau.

For heavy-duty diesel-powered trucks, the emissions of nitrogen oxide and particulate matter are expected to drop by more than 60 percent, it said.

Mobile sources, mainly vehicles, contributed 45 percent of locally generated

hazardous particles known as PM2.5 in 2017, outnumbering all other types of sources, according to the bureau.

Beijing has seen continuous improvement in its air quality. The PM2.5 density in th

e capital in 2018 stood at 51 micrograms per cubic meter, down by 12.1 percent year-on-year.

Officials and experts have said, however, it could be increasingly challe

nging for the city to further reduce air pollution after the local government has taken all ma

jor measures that could achieve quick results, including the shifting of bulk coal to clean energy as a heating source.

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China-US space cooperation would likely to prompt more

countries to join hands to develop space instead of choosing between China and the US, especially because after the end of the Cold War, international space cooperation has increased.

In fact, the International Space Station launched in 1998 has been operating thanks to the cooperat

ion between the US, Russia, Japan, some European countries, Canada and Brazil. The four maj

or satellite positioning systems — GPS (US), Beidou (China), GLONASS (Russia) and Galileo (Europe) — may also comple

ment each other to provide the most accurate positioning services. And once China and the US engage in a major sp

ace project, many other countries will join in and thus take space exploration to a new stage.

Sino-US space cooperation will stimulate the development of relevant industries and bring tangible benefits to the people. Space explora

tion will set in motion a series of space industries such as manufacturing, agriculture, resources, e

ergy and tourism. These may become new sources of growth for the world economy, promote industrial techn

ologies, and help address some global challenges such as climate change and energy depletion.

And the new products and services so generated will improve people’s lives and contribute to social progress.

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Exercise leads Lunar New Year trendsival holiday, burning

During the Spring Festival holiday, burning calories has become a new trend from an internet catchphrase, chinanews.com has reported.

In many parts of China, sports have risen in popularity, as people enjoy working out by putting their

bodies in motion, reducing the physical burden of eating and drinking while staying healthier at the same time.

Fangfang, 24, from Taizhou, Zhejiang province, ran her first 5 kilometers of the Year of the Pig on Monday, as jogging to work makes her feel full of energy.

Dozens of winter swimmers from Yuhuan, Zhejiang, gathered at the beach behind Kanmen and rushed into to the sea against the cold wind to enjoy s

wimming. “We coastal people start the new year with our unique sport,” winter swimming enthusiast Chen Zhongfang said.

In preparation for the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, games on snow and ice are drawing more interest. In snow and ic

e parks in Hohhot, Inner Mongolia autonomous region, a number of experiential projects have been set up, such

as a snow football field, ice bumper cars, curling, ice gyro and a snow circle. Thousands of citizens take part in such activities every day.

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More than 12 mln entry, exit trips made during Spring Fes

Border inspection agencies across China have seen more th

an 12.5 million entry and exit trips made during the week-long Spring Festival holiday that started Mo

nday, an increase of nearly 11 percent than that of last year, the National Immigration Administration (NIA) said Sunday.

Inbound trips exceeded 6.22 million, rising by about 9.5 percent than the figure of 2018, wh

ile outbound trips increased by nearly 12.5 percent to over 6.31 million, according to the NIA.

Over 7.22 million entry and exit trips during the holiday were made by mainland residents for personal p

urposes, including traveling and visiting family members, growing by nearly 16 percent year on year.

Destinations visited most included Thailand, Japan, Vietnam, the Republic of K

orea, Singapore, Malaysia and the United States, as well as Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan, the NIA said.

koryoung.com.cn

working well,” presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said

In Pyongyang, Biegun and Kim Hyok Chol, DPRK’s special representative for US affairs, discussed “advancing Trump and Kim’s

Singapore summit commitments of complete denuclearization, transforming US-(DPRK)

relations, and building a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula,” the US State Department said in a statement.

Trump and Kim met for their first summit in Singapore last June, during which Kim pledged to work toward the “co

mplete denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula, without providing a clear timetable or roadmap.

US-led diplomacy aimed at getting the DPRK to abandon its nuclear program in return for outside concessions has since made little headway.

Calling the AU a banner that unites the African countries to pursue self-renewal, Xi praised th

e integration process of the continent and the great headway made since last year under the guidance of the organization.

African countries continue to speak with a united voice on important internatio

nal and regional issues, and the international influence of the continent keeps rising,

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Midway through our flight from Auckland to Shanghai, th

the pilot informs us that Chinese authorities had not given this plane permissi

on to land, so we needed to turn around,” Eric Hundman, an assistant professor at New York University Shanghai, said on his Twitter account.

He described the experience as “a new level of China

An official with CAAC said the administration has begun an investigation into the incident.

Air New Zealand also said they are investigating and an official explanation will be released later on Sunday.

All the passengers have been accommodated and another flight is to be arranged on Sunday night to send the passengers to Shanghai.

“Air New Zealand wishes to sincerely apologize for the return and subsequent retiming of your flight NZ289,” the carrier said in the short message to its passengers.

The rearranged flight is scheduled to take off at 11pm New Zealand time on Sunday and land at Pudong airport at 6am local time Monday.

Bad,” which caused heated debate on the social network.

“Obviously Air New Zealand forgot to get approval for this plane in advance… You ca

n blame Air New Zealand, but this mistake has nothing to do with ‘China Bad’,” a netizen replied.

Hundman later told Shanghai Daily that he did not mean to blame China since it was still un

clear who is at fault. “I mean that I had a frustrating, highly unusual experience while en route to China,” he added.

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The fourth opportunity is the Belt and Road Initiative, Liu

said. In 2018, trade in goods between China and countries within the re

gion covered by the BRI stood at $1.3 trillion, a 16.3 percent increase year-on-year. It w

as 3.7 percentage points higher than the growth rate of China’s overall external trade.

More than 13,000 China Railway Express trains have traveled along the BRI routes to date, l

inking cities in China with 49 cities in 15 European countries, including London, he added.

Rona Fairhead, the UK’s minister of state for trade and export promotion, said trade be

tween the two countries is worth more than 66 billion pounds ($86 billion) annually.

“UK exports to China continue to go from strength to strength,” she said. “In this n

ew year, I very much look forward to continuing our close level of engagement w

ith China. It is clear that there is still untapped demand for British goods and services in the Chinese market.”

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