Xi praises students who helped poor Yan’an residents

President Xi Jinping has encouraged college students to get to know their country and achieve their true value as the nation comes closer than ever to its goal of rejuvenation.

Xi made the remarks on Tuesday in a letter replying to college students who took part in the third China College Students’ Internet Plus Innovation and Entrepreneurship Competition.

The students wrote to Xi earlier this year about how they used business startup programs to address local need for development and help boost efforts in eradicating poverty in Yan’an, Shaanxi province.

Yan’an was once a home to China’s revolutionary bases before the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, and it has been underdeveloped.

In April and July, around 100 groups taking part in the competition went to Yan’an to help local people eliminate poverty and live a well-off life.

In the reply to the students on Tuesday, Xi said he is glad to know that the students have achieved progress and received inspiration during their stay at the hometown of China’s revolution.

The students have integrated their dreams of youth into the Chinese Dream, and have projected the upbeat look of the modern Chinese youth when they followed the paces of revolutionary predecessors there, Xi said.

As long as the younger generation of the country have ideals, pursuits and shoulders, there will be endless power of youth supporting the Chinese nation’s rejuvenation, Xi wrote.

It is hoped the students will improve their talent and abilities via innovation and entrepreneurial activities and strengthen their willpower through hard work, Xi said.

As the country has set the goal of eliminating poverty by 2020, Yan’an reduced its registered population of poor residents to 10,200 people as of the end of last year, according to the city’s information office.

China considers revising rural land contract law

BEIJING — China’s top legislature is mulling a revision to the law on rural land contract.

The revision aims to better define the use rights of rural land so that farmers can enjoy ‘sufficient and guaranteed protection over their land rights,’ said Liu Zhenwei, deputy director of the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC), at the bi-monthly legislative session of the NPC Standing Committee Tuesday.

Stressing that the state protects the stability and consistency of rural land contracts, the draft revision says that upon expiration the current round of contracts will be extended for a further 30 years.

Since the country adopted the household responsibility system in the early 1980s, the property rights of rural land have been divided into two layers: the ownership right that is collectively owned by a rural community, normally a village, and the use right that is held by an individual household that contracts a piece of land from the village.

The draft revision further separates the use right into the contract right and the management right, according to Liu.

The separation of the ownership right, contract right and management right of rural land will allow farmers to retain the contract right over their allotted land and only transfer the management right if they choose to lease the land to others, mortgage it to banks or invest it in a cooperative in exchange of shares.

More than 30 percent of rural households have transferred their contracted land, totaling 31.93 million hectares, according to Liu.

Posters for meeting of global party leaders released

The posters are released at the conference site on Nov 24. [Photo by Zou Hong/China Daily]

Beijing – Two posters entitled A Community with a Shared Future for CPC in Dialogue with World Political Parties High-level Meeting were officially released on Nov 24, 2017.

Guo Yezhou, deputy head of the International Liaison Department of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, told a press conference in Beijing that the high-level gathering of leaders of global political parties will be held in Beijing from Nov 30 to Dec 3.

The posters use “tea” as the main creative element, skillfully applying the Chinese cultural tradition of drinking tea with friends, which vividly reflects the theme of this dialogue that building a community with a shared future for mankind and building a beautiful world is the responsibility of world political parties.

Outline reveals redistribution of industries

Outline shows industries moving from capital and where they’ll go

An aerial photo taken on Oct 26 shows Rongcheng county of the Xiongan New Area. [Photo/VCG]

An outline released on Wednesday on the integrated development of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region has offered further details on how the capital’s resources and industries will be redistributed.

The ultimate goal is to move noncapital functions away from downtown Beijing, which will aid efforts to control population growth.

According to the outline, Tongzhou district and the Xiongan New Area, which covers three counties in Hebei province, are two key destinations for the relocated resources.

Municipal administrative offices will be moved to Tongzhou, which also will develop commercial services, tourism and technology innovation as major industries, according to Liu Bozheng, deputy head of the Beijing Development and Reform Commission, the city’s economic planner.

Xiongan will develop mainly high-tech and innovative industries, he said. “The aim is to attract innovative resources to create industrial clusters and create a work-life balance for the population.”

The outline, released by the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Integrated Development Office, also clarifies the functions of four strategic areas: the Caofeidian Integrated Development Zone in Hebei, the Beijing New Airport Economic Zone, Tianjin Binhai New Area and the Zhangjiakou-Chengde Ecological Area, also in Hebei.

Steel processing and petrochemicals will move to Caofeidian, a major port in northern China; aviation logistics and high-tech industries will move to the new airport economic zone; and financial services, digital centers and technology companies will head to the Binhai New Area.

Zhangjiakou, co-host with Beijing of the 2022 Winter Olympics, will develop sports, culture, tourism and exhibition services, the outline added.

In addition to the two key places and four strategic areas, the outline also indicates that the Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei governments will work together to develop 46 industrial regions-15 for innovation, 20 for modern manufacturing, eight for services and three for agriculture industries.

Supportive policies in terms of finance, land supply and environmental protection will be offered to help develop these regions. For instance, Tianjin has been working on favorable policies to attract technology companies from Beijing.

Bai Xiangdong, a senior official with the Tianjin branch of the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Integrated Development Office, said several State-owned companies such as Sinomec Group, an energy service provider, have signed contracts to relocate regional headquarters to Tianjin. Some private companies such as Mobike and Didi Chuxing also have signed on to locate their business units in Tianjin’s Binhai New Area.

The aim of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei Integrated Development is to realize coordinated development of the region, better protect the environment and make Beijing a livable and harmonious capital.

The development plan of Beijing (2016-35) released earlier this year caps the capital’s population at 23 million and calls for more green space.

3,587 fugitives return to China

BEIJING – By the end of October, 3,587 fugitives had returned from more than 90 countries and regions, according to an article released on the website of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Commission for Discipline Inspection on Friday.

Of the returned fugitives, 701 were officials, the article said, and 9.54 billion yuan (1.44 billion US dollars) was recovered.

Fifty-one of China’s most-wanted fugitives suspected of corruption have been captured, including 12 from the United States, 12 from Canada, three from Australia and two from New Zealand, the article said.

In April 2015, Interpol’s National Central Bureau of China released a list of 100 red notice corruption suspects who had fled overseas.

Gao Bo, deputy head of the CCDI Inspector’s Office at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said that the success in hunting down corrupt fugitives lay in the leadership of the CPC.

Gao said that most of the remaining 49 red notice fugitives were hiding in developed countries, such as the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

China should urge relevant countries to carry out their international responsibilities and not become shelters for corrupt fugitives and criminals.

Commentary: Xi stresses ‘consistency,’ urges CPC to make new progress

BEIJING — President Xi Jinping emphasized “consistency” in upholding and developing socialism with Chinese characteristics in his speech for senior officials on Friday, setting guidelines for the Communist Party of China (CPC) to make new progress.

Xi, who is also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission, asked the officials to “consistently” promote the “great new project of Party building” and increase their sense of precaution and prevention of risks and challenges.

He made the remarks at the opening of a workshop attended by newly elected members and alternate members of the CPC Central Committee, as well as provincial and ministerial-level officials.

Xi’s speech placed “socialism with Chinese characteristics in a new era” into its historical lineage of social revolutions led by the CPC, illustrating the links of continuity.

The speech also put socialism with Chinese characteristics into the context of the evolution of socialism worldwide.

When socialism emerged, it was a brand new social form, and socialism with Chinese characteristics was an unprecedented pioneering cause that must continuously develop.

“Consistency” in Party building has been the key to the victory of the CPC, from the “great project” of Party building proposed in revolutionary times to the “great new project of Party building” during reform and opening up, and the strict self-governance of the Party since its 18th national congress in 2012.

In his speech, Xi said the Party should have the courage to carry out self-reform and become stronger in order to uphold and develop socialism with Chinese characteristics in the new era.

Strict governance of the Party starts from the “key few,” referring to senior officials.

Xi asked the “key few” to be firm in their beliefs and political stances, enhance their sense of responsibility, strengthen their caliber and abilities, and improve their work styles.

Xi has also consistently stressed a sense of precaution and prevention of risks and challenges.

He stressed that the more China achieves, the more prudent and prepared officials should become to avoid making strategic mistakes.

Domestically, China still faces difficult tasks of reform, imbalanced development, and the trend of rising economic and social risks. Internationally, situations are constantly changing and the environment of neighboring countries is increasingly complex and sensitive.

While China’s development model has drawn attention worldwide, incorrect judgements and unfavorable interference by some countries have tested our wisdom and ability to cope.

As Xi said, the CPC should provide its answers to the test of our times. The people will decide how well the Party has performed.

China outlines vision for future transport model

BEIJING — China has outlined its vision of a strong, modern transport network, with Chinese characteristics.

At a press conference Tuesday on the development of China’s transport system, Ministry of Transport spokesperson Wu Chungeng spoke of zero distance, zero emissions, zero mortality and zero inventory.

Developing transport in China is part of the goals mentioned in a key report delivered at the 19th Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress in October, putting it high on the government agenda.

The transport-strong nation that we are trying to build should have a world-leading transport system, satisfy the demand of its people, and support socialist modernization, Wu said. To realize the goal, China should lead the world in terms of transport quality and efficiency, technological innovation, industry governance, and international influence.

Wu emphasized many key aspects of China’s transport vision, including the importance of the environment, personal safety and being people-focused.

He said the country wanted to build a modern logistics system with warehouses on the move, effectively improving efficiency with what he called zero inventory.

China’s transport industry has seen rapid development, with 1.28 million km of rural roads built or renovated in the last five years, and over 99 percent of townships and over 98 percent of villages now connected by asphalt or cement roads.

Total road mileage has increased by 534,000 km, railways in operation grew by 27,000 km, and over 7 billion trips have been made on high speed railways from 2012 to 2017.

By building a global transport supply chain that connects the urban and rural areas in the country and links China with the world, the transportation industry can play an important role in China’s goal to realize socialist modernization, Wu said.

China is already a world leader in technologies such as high-speed railways. Besides an increasingly intricate domestic high-speed railway network, China is also helping other countries with transport infrastructure construction.

Chinese companies are carrying out more than 20 railway projects overseas, with a total investment of 100 billion yuan (about $15 billion), China’s railway authorities said in November.

The corporate burden has been reduced significantly in China, with the country cutting logistics costs by more than 88 billion yuan ($13.4 billion) in 2017, through measures such as the removal of a number of road tolls and the introduction of streamlined traffic services.

According to Zhang Dawei, a transport ministry official, China plans to cut more logistics costs in 2018 through measures including streamlining charges at ports.

The country will continue to push supply-side structural reform in the transport realm, improving weak links through reasonable and effective investments, Zhang said.

In 2018, China plans to build 5,000 km of expressways, build and renovate about 200,000 km of rural roads and increase inland waterways by over 600 km.

Wu said that China intended to pilot a project on green cargo delivery next year, encouraging the use of clean energy-powered trucks and Internet-based information sharing systems.

Premier Li arrives in Cambodia for second LMC leaders’ meeting, official visit

PHNOM PENH- Premier Li Keqiang arrived Wednesday for the second Lancang-Mekong Cooperation (LMC) leaders’ meeting and an official visit to Cambodia.

I look forward to joining my colleagues in Phnom Penh for the second LMC leaders’ meeting and to discussing with them future action plans of cooperation in water conservancy, education, culture, youth and many other areas, Li said in a signed article published on Khmer Times, a leading English-language newspaper in Cambodia, ahead of his visit.

I am confident that these efforts will lead to even more fruitful outcomes, added the premier, who will co-chair the leaders’ meeting with Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen.

During the meeting, leaders of the six LMC countries — China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam — will review the progress made through the sub-regional cooperation mechanism and discuss the future of cooperation, according to Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang.

Initiated by China in 2014, the LMC mechanism focuses on five priority areas of cooperation: connectivity, production capacity, cross-border economic cooperation, water resources management, as well as agriculture and poverty reduction.

The Lancang River originates on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau in southwest China. It is called the Mekong River as it flows through Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam before emptying into the sea.

As to the official visit, which comes as the two neighbors are poised to celebrate the 60th anniversary of their diplomatic relations this year, Li will meet with Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni, and hold talks with Hun Sen to promote bilateral cooperation.

It is estimated that China has built more bridges and more roads in Cambodia than any other country, the Chinese premier said in his article. In my view, the best bridge China has built is the bridge of friendship between our peoples, and the best road is the road leading toward common development.

The very purpose of my visit is to continue building that bridge and that road, he said.

No letup in fight against corruption

China will continue its hunt for corrupt officials who flee overseas and their illegal assets, including the establishment of international cooperation mechanisms, the top anti-graft body pledged on Saturday.

In an article published on the website of the Communist Party of China Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, an unnamed official from its International Cooperation Bureau said the agency will not cease in its pursuit of fugitives in hiding around the globe.

The agency said it would send a strong signal to the world that “no matter where they escape to, they cannot escape the law and will be definitely be brought to justice”.

The CCDI is leading a Central Anti-Corruption Coordination Group, which in 2014 launched Sky Net, a far-reaching campaign to snare economic fugitives abroad and confiscate ill-gotten gains.

According to the latest data, more than 3,300 fugitives suspected of economic crimes had returned to China from more than 90 countries and regions, including the United States, Canada and New Zealand, and illicit assets worth 9.36 billion yuan ($1.4 billion) had been recovered.

The CCDI article said that in 2016 fewer corruption suspects fled overseas than in previous years, declining from 101 in 2014 to 31 in 2015, and 19 in 2016. The number is four so far this year.

For the next step, the office will deepen international cooperation in anti-graft campaigns, build a global network to catch criminals, showcase China’s determination in fighting corruption, and build a new order in international anti-corruption, according to the article.

The agency will also strengthen its effort to keep the Belt and Road Initiative corruption-free, it said.

At the same time, for the anti-graft campaign at home, the CCDI vowed to keep its strategic focus, deepen political inspection, and make sure there are neither no-go zones during inspections nor tolerance of corruption.

It will continue to find issues, conduct full and comprehensive inspections, and ensure Party members exercise strict self-governance in every respect.

To achieve these goals, it will make connecting inspection offices across all levels of government as its focus.

The central government will expand trials of a national supervision system, which has been tested in Shanxi and Zhejiang provinces and Beijing, to all provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities.

The commissions will be given the powers and tools to investigate corrupt activities carried out by both Party and government officials in accordance with the law. These commissions will be formed at the annual provincial, city and county-level people’s congresses, held around the turn of the year.

A national supervision law will also be formulated, General Secretary Xi Jinping said when delivering a report on Oct 18 to the opening session of the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China.

In early October, the top anti-graft watchdog announced about 1.34 million village and county officials, including 648,000 Party members, have been sentenced for corruption since 2013.

As a result, 94.8 percent of county-level Party organizations have set up anti-corruption monitoring mechanisms.

Made in China 2025 seen as a key priority for govt

In the past year, the government has been committed to transforming the manufacturing industry into a smart, high-quality sector by providing greater policy support and establishing national demonstration zones for the Made in China 2025 initiative.

Last year, the initiative, which was introduced in 2015, became a priority for the State Council, China’s Cabinet, as Premier Li Keqiang presided over three executive meetings intended to push forward the strategy and raise the competitiveness of manufacturing.

On May 17, the State Council approved six measures to further promote the initiative and the transformation of the manufacturing sector. The meeting focused on key technologies such as sensors, industrial software and management systems, and also aimed to improve research and development in technologies such as new materials.

A meeting on July 19 approved several national demonstration zones for the strategy, involving 12 cities and four city clusters. The cities are Ningbo and Huzhou in Zhejiang province, Quanzhou in Fujian province, Shenyang in Liaoning province, Changchun in Jilin province, Wuhan in Hubei province, Wuzhong in the Ningxia Hui autonomous region, Qingdao in Shandong province, Chengdu in Sichuan province, Ganzhou in Jiangxi province, Guangzhou in Guangdong province and Hefei in Anhui province.

The demonstration zones will be given greater financial support, professional training programs and streamlined administrative procedures.

An executive meeting on Sept 6 decided that the upgrading of the quality management system will be completed by the end of this year, while service providers and small and microenterprises will be encouraged to join the system.

Upgrading of the manufacturing sector has been a key priority for the State Council since Made in China 2025 was proposed in late 2014. In March the following year, Li used the Government Work Report to announce a plan to promote the concept.

In 2016, the premier presided over four State Council executive meetings to move the strategy by further promoting its integration with the Internet Plus initiative, which combines the internet with traditional industries, along with the standardization of equipment manufacturing and improving the quality of consumer goods.

Visiting manufacturers was a must for Li during his tours of the provinces of Shandong, Shaanxi and Hubei last year, illustrating their importance.

The executive meetings were in line with the policy support and coordination demands required by China’s transformation, said Zhu Sendi, a consultant with the China Machinery Industry Federation.

As early as 2010, the nation’s manufacturing sector output was the highest in the world, but China still trails developed economies in terms of quality, innovation, industrial structure and sustainable development, he said.

Transformation into a stronger manufacturing sector will require a large number of innovation-oriented professionals, which will require reform of the education system, along with a good business environment which will encourage innovation and entrepreneurship, he added.

Huang Qunhui, director of the Institute of Industrial Economics at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, said the sluggish global economy means Chinese manufacturers must improve the quality of their products and improve competitiveness to win market share.