He said it’s important to keep a historical perspective on

cting the outlook of China-US bilateral relations, saying that the two economies became deeply integrated over the past 40 years despite some headwinds.

“In the next four decades, China and the US can further promote mutual understanding while properly handling differences,” he said.

January marked the 40th anniversary of the establishment of China-US diplo

matic relations. Bilateral trade grew from less than $2.5 billion 40 years ago to more tha

n $630 billion in 2018. Over the same period, two-way investment rose from practically nil to more than $240 billion.

Chinese Ambassador to the US Cui Tiankai said at a recent event that China an

d the US need to develop even stronger ties in the future despite some differences.

“We need to develop an even stronger relationship on the basis of coordination, cooperation and stability” between the two countries, Cui said.

He said it was important for the two sides to have a much better mutual understand

ing on each other’s intentions and policies and identify common ground to stabilize the relationship.

China’s exports to the US climbed 1.9 percent year-on-year to 252.11 billion yuan ($37.21 billion) last month, according to official figures. During the peri

od, foreign direct investment from the US into the Chinese mainland recorded a 124.6 percent year-on-year growth.

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he story has caused an uproar in Sweden. Gui made it clear that

she would not keep quiet in exchange for various conditions and the Western media is backing her stand. The Swedish Mi

nistry of Foreign Affairs said it already launched an internal investigation into Lindstedt, who had been appointed for an

other position in the Swedish government in March. Lindstedt has now been recalled to her country.

Is Angela Gui telling the truth? The Chinese Embassy in Sweden has responded that China has never and will never authorize

anyone to be in contact with her. China handled Gui’s case in accordance with the law and legal p

rocedures. People need to be aware of Angela’s unique position as Gui Minhai’s daughter; and, considering her lack of ex

perience in distinguishing complex issues, it is necessary for people to be cautious about her story.

However, the role of Ambassador Lindstedt is also part of this. If she did arrange a meeting between Angela Gui a

nd the Chinese businessmen not authorized by Beijing, then we can make the following analysis.

First, there are domestic groups in Sweden that hope the relationship between Sweden and China will not be a

ffected by Gui’s incident in the long term. They are willing to facilitate public discussions between Stockholm and B

eijing on this matter. Ambassador Lindstedt herself is a representative of such groups.

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Moreover, the West likes to attack China by using Chinese

dissidents and their families. Western countries believe that they can easily dig up stories about those people and they can be easily manipulat

ed as well. However, what happened with Angela Gui has sent a clear message that there is always the risk of it backfiring. Those peopl

e are fully aware of being used by some Western interests, which results in a strong sense of insecurity and suspicion. Some of them are also selfish. A f

ew years ago, a Chinese dissident well-known in the West left China for the US and later embarrassed his American patrons.

Furthermore, nowadays Western public opinion is increasingly radical and populist, which has made it difficult for some countrie

s to adopt a realistic approach and repair relations with China after disputes. Some prominent for

eigners who have a comprehensive understanding of China are facing an increasing risk of acting differently from t

he radical sentiment. Recently, John McCallum, Canadian ambassador to China, was criticized and finally lost his po

sition, due to his attempt to ease the China-Canada relationship regarding the incident of Meng Wanzhou.

Last but not least, the incident has primarily embarrassed the Swedish Foreign Ministry m

ore than causing trouble to China. Some Western media claim that Anna Lindstedt’s behavior pr

oves China exercises significant influence on ambassadors of Western countries to China. Such a comment is hi

ghly unprofessional and makes no sense except to show they do not know what they are talking about. Am

bassadors are usually among those in their own country who hope at the utmost to maintain sound relations with th

e country to which they are posted. Generally, they are supposed to play a dovish role, not a hawkish one. Some We

stern media authors need to learn basic ABC knowledge of diplomacy. (The author is a commentator with the Global Times)

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Hopefully, the discussions over the past three month

hs have helped both sides to better understand each other’s concerns and fostered greater mutual trust.

That the feel-good atmosphere that has prevailed since the January discussions in Washington has been mai

ntained by this round of talks was evident as the negotiations are to continue in the US capital next week. This welcome dev

elopment was confirmed by Xi, who said he hoped the discussions would carry forward the positive momentum as i

t conformed to the interests of both countries to strengthen their cooperation.

Although it is probably too hasty to interpret from this that a deal is imminent given s

ome of the US demands, it is to be hoped that the just-concluded negotiations have laid the groundwork for

next week’s discussions to establish a framework for a resolution to the trade dispute, so that a meeting between Xi and T

rump, which is regarded as necessary to finalize any deal, can be scheduled for this purpose as soon as possible.

New progress on the outstanding difficult issues is imperative as the trade frictions have not been good for either country, despite claims to the contrary.

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Between each April and October, villagers from Dingri Cou

unty usually set up black tents at the foot of Mount Qomolangma, providing tourists accomodation as a means of earning money.

Though ordinary visitors can’t go beyond the monastery, it won’t affect them from appreciating the mountain.

“The new tent camp for ordinary tourists can still allow them to clearly see the 8,800-meter-plus mountain,” Kelsang said.

Travelers who have a climbing permit can go to the base camp at an altitude of 5,200 meters. Kelsan

g said the mountaineering activities have been approved by the regional forestry department.

Decades after the epic climb to the world’s peak, Tibetans at the f

oot of Mount Qomolangma have conquered poverty by receiving professional and am

ateur mountaineers and tourists, who have also posed an environmental challenge to the mountain.

To conserve the environment surrounding Mount Qomolangma, China c

arried out three major clean-ups at an altitude of 5,200 meters and above last spr

ing, collecting more than eight tonnes of household waste, human feces and mountaineering trash.

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The central bank will eliminate that interest rate margin

sooner or later, and guide commercial banks to lower lending rates closer to a market-determined level, Sun said.

“Theoretically, there is room for rate cuts of 1 percentage point,” said Zhang Tao, a

n analyst in the financial market department of China Construction Bank.

China has enacted both monetary and fiscal policies to offset downward pressure on eco

nomic growth this year. Some economists have predicted the growth rate may slip in the first quarter be

low the 6.4 percent of the past three months of 2018 because of factors such as trade tensions.

US Federal Reserve Chairman Jay Powell decided on Jan 30 to shelve a plan to keep raisi

ng interest rates because of possible risks to US growth. The European Central Bank stopped exp

anding quantitative easing and warned about the negative results of Brexit.

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Forward-looking measures have already been taken

 by the Chinese monetary authority, earlier than other major central banks, based on the evaluation on macroeconomic conditions and the exter

nal environment. Policy fine-tuning will send positive signals to the market and support financial resilience, Zhang said.

This year, the remarkable change in tone from the world’s major central banks is shifting into a monet

ary easing cycle, and policies from the Chinese central bank are headed in the same direction, Zhang added.

A recent research note from Goldman Sachs forecast China’s credit growth to rise in January as commercial banks may be “si

gnificantly more aggressive than before” with encouragement from the easing policy. With the PBOC scheduled to

release more data this week, the trend may be reflected in faster growth of new yuan loans and the broad money supply.

Amid a good fall of snow, which Chinese traditionally believe promises a year of harvest and

prosperity, Chinese and United States top officials started two days of talks in Beijing on Thursday.

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That the festival triggers such huge human movements eac

ch year is linked to how rapid urbanization has driven and been driven by China’s historically

high annual economic growth rates over the past four decades of reform and opening-up.

With the benefits of migration increasingly visible, and the main obstacles to rural-to-urban migration removed (including through massively ex

panded transport infrastructures), the number of internal migrants has increased by 35 times between 1982 and 2018.

However, China’s household registration system complicates the migration process. For m

any reasons, a major unintended effect of migration has been the creation of large populations of left-beh

ind family members-elderly parents, spouses and children, each of these subsets totaling tens of millions.

Beyond the gift-sharing and merrymaking of family reunions, Spring Festival pr

ovides opportunities for improving care arrangements for left-behind parents, spouses and children.

This social value of the festival is important since we know that despite on

going improvements, left-behind children and elderly people have poorer ac

cess to quality education, health and social protection services, compared with their peers in the big towns and cities.

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It could be the number of deaths among the elderly in rur

ral areas are at their lowest in February and March after discounting for the effects of winter’s cold snaps. Currently, a

bout one-fifth of the population aged 80 and above have moderate to severe disabilities and chronic illnesses, but it is als

o a fact that happier people cope better with illness and disability, regardless of age. Several studies in China clearly show tha

t a key factor in elderly people’s life satisfaction is spending quality time with their children and close friends.

It also wouldn’t be surprising if monthly births registrations in many villages and s

mall towns show a spike around November and December this year, as a re

sult of the coming together for an extended period of millions of spouses during the Spring Festival.

Furthermore, Chinese society places a high premium on marriage and childbearing with

in marriage for young adults, and Spring Festival is the peak time

for matchmaking in rural areas. So, we may expect this year’s holiday period to have yielded above average levels of suc

cessful matchmaking of future spouses by pro-active parents. This social function of the festival should not be o

verlooked, especially with the persistently rising age of people getting married for the first time in China.

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Airbus to scrap production of A380 superjumboys its prowe

TOULOUSE – Europe’s Airbus announced plans to scrap production of the A380 superjumbo on Thursd

ay, abandoning its dream of dominating the skies with a cruiseliner for the 21st century after years of lacklustre sales.

The world’s largest airliner, with two decks of spacious cabins a

nd room for 544 people in standard layout, was designed to challenge Boeing’s legendary 747

but failed to take hold as airlines backed a new generation of smaller, more nimble jets.

Airbus said in a statement that the last A380 would be delivered in 2021.

Confirming a shake-up first reported by Reuters, it said Emirates – the largest A380 cust

omer – had decided to reduce its orders for the iconic superjumbo and order a total of 70 of the smaller A350 and A330neo models.

The European company said it would enter talks with unions in coming weeks over the 3,000-3,500 jobs potentially affected.

Airbus will produce 17 more of the planes including 14 for Emirates and 3 for Japanese airline ANA.

As part of the restructuring, Emirates placed a new order for 40 A330-900neo jets an

d 30 A350-900 aircraft, partially restoring a purchase of A350 aircraft which it cancelled in

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