Military drill near Taiwan ‘necessary’sman for the State Coun

Mainland slams response by island’s leader, who called exercise ‘a threat’

A spokesman for the Chinese mainland said a military drill by Chinese bombers and warships around Taiwan on Monday was routin

e and slammed the island’s administration for misleading the Taiwan people and hyping tensions.

On Monday, various warships, bombers and reconnaissance aircr

aft of the People’s Liberation Army Eastern Theater Command conducted “necessary train

ing” around Taiwan as a means to test the joint assault capability between different branches of the military, Senior Colone

l Zhang Chunhui, the theater command’s spokesman, said in a statement on Monday.

The exercise took place in waters east of Taiwan and was part of a scheduled PLA exercise, he said.

“It is completely within the normal legal rights of a sovereign cou

ntry, and it’s beneficial for maintaining peace and security in the Taiwan Straits,” Zhang said.

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The two sides can help jointly find solutions to glob

 and bilateral issues despite remaining difficulties in bilateral relations, he said.

The thawing of ties between China and Japan was marked by Li’s visit to the country in

May, the first by a Chinese premier in eight years, and the visit by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to China in October.

The economic dialogue between the two countries was launched in 2007,

and deteriorated relations due to disputes over a number of issues resulted in an eight-ye

ar hiatus until last April, when the two sides restarted with the fourth round of dialogue in Tokyo.

China said on Monday that the Belt and Road Initiative is open to economic cooperation with

other countries and regions, and it does not become involved in territorial disputes of relevant parties.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Lu Kang said at a daily news briefing tha

t although the initiative was proposed by China, it is an international project for the public good.

While advancing the initiative, China upholds the principle of equality, openness and transparency and sticks to enter、

prise-oriented market operations as well as market laws and well-accepted international rules, Lu said.

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he monetary policy should “maintain strategic focu

cus”, keeping it prudent while the liquidity should be at a reasonably adequate level, it said.

Financial policies are required to further support small and private companies, and fun

ding through the capital market is supported by the authorities, according to the statement.

The central bank had skipped open market operations for 15 conse

cutive working days until Monday. “Reasonable and adequate liquidity in the banking syste

m” was the main reason for the absence of open market operations, according to a statement from the central bank.

To cut or not to cut the RRR, a strong tool for liquidity adjustm

ent, has become a hot topic since April, not only for investors, but also for policy advisers.

Divergent opinions are spreading among a broader group of market observer

s. The market is trying to get more indications from the monetary authority, although the C

hinese central bank barely sends any hints on possible monetary policy operations before taking action.

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The company will not cancel social insurance and housi

sing funds for the sake of cost-cutting, Liu said, adding some staff made 80,000 yuan a

month in pilot areas for the new salary regime in southern China’s second and third-tier cities.

Earlier this year, rumors spread that China’s e-commerce giant would can

cel couriers’ basic salary and reduce welfare. The company confirmed the salary adjus

tment plan via its official Sina Weibo account on April 7, saying as the number of orders from individual clients incre

ases, the company is looking to adopt an incentive plan to reward outstanding employees.

JD will reduce its delivery staff members’ salaries by adopting a commis

sion-based payment scheme starting in June and low

er contributions to employees’ housing funds from 12 to 7 percent, Sina Finance reported.

An anonymous courier with JD Logistics said the task of getting more external delivery

orders under the new salary system would be hard to accomplish, and the new policy will reduce their salary, th

e report alleged, though the courier did not indicate an exact amount for the reduction.

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China, CEECs agree on more connectivity cooperation

Croatia, April 13 — China and the Central and Eastern European Count

ries (CEECs) on Friday agreed to enhance connectivity to achieve more development.

The agreement was part of the Dubrovnik Guidelines for Cooperation between China and t

he CEECs, which was released after the eighth China-CEEC leaders’ meeting in the Croatian city of Dubrovnik.

According to the guidelines, China and the CEECs are willing to pro

mote railway projects cooperation in line with respective laws and regulations and through

consultations, in particular by strengthening exchanges and cooperation on railway planning, railway organiza

tion development, management, technology development, logistics and freight terminal construction.

China and the CEECs will jointly explore utilization and construction of logistics hubs, said the guidelines, adding that China is

welcome to participate in joint development of new freight lines in connecting markets in Asia and Europe, u

nder the understanding that it respects the principles of transparency and non-discrimination.

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They are willing to conduct cooperation using the

rtunities provided by the initiative and the strategy, which for the EU me

mber states would also complement relevant EU initiatives, said the guidelines.

Announcing that 2020 will be the Year of China-CEEC Agricultural Diversity Cooperation, the p

articipants said they support expansion and deepening of cooperation in sustainable agriculture through

academic discussions, project docking, talent training and exhibitions as well as forums.

More Chinese people take trips during holidays compared to 10 years ago, according to official statistics and academic reports.

Both the number of domestic and outbound tourists have seen

a steady increase from 2008 to 2018, with the number of domestic tourists rocketing from

merely 1.71 billion in 2008 to a stunning 5.54 billion in 2018, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show.

Tourists in China have become more active in spending their public

holidays on traveling, according to a report from China Tourism Academy.

exstorm.org

After making a couple of reconciliatory gestures, suc

ch as freezing nuclear and missile tests and demolishing some test sites, Pyongyang want

s something in return. Which is not unreasonable, but so far has not been forthcoming.

Washington should not anticipate Pyongyang denuclearizing in a wholesale, one-off mann

er. After all, its nuclear missile programs are the sole bargaining chip it has in its hands.

Rather than surrender its nuclear arsenal in a wholesale manner, it is in Pyongyang’s best inte

rests to turn its engagement with Washington into an arms control regime between two nuclear states.

It may be that a third Trump-Kim summit happens. But meaningful hea

dway in denuclearization entails more than what the two sides appear ready to offer at the moment.

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The meetings on Thursday and Friday are all part of

f the 8th Summit of Central and Eastern European Countries & China.

At the China-CEEC economy and trade forum before the leaders meeting, Li called for strengthening trade facilitation and exp

anding two-way opening-up of markets. China is willing to expand imports of goods from CEE nations, particu

larly agricultural products that cater to the demand of Chinese consumers, he said. Trade of farm goods, machine

ry and electric devices should be further boosted and logistics sped up between the trading partners, he said.

Li said trade between China and the 16 CEE nations rose by 21 percent to a record high, de

spite a global trade slowdown. China is willing to strengthen cooperation with CEE nations in infrast

ructure based on market rules and following European Union rules and standards, he said.

Li advocated the great potential for trade and economic cooperation between China a

nd the 16 countries. China-CEEC cooperation is a helpful addition to China-EU ties, he said.

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awmakers Julian Assange should face justice in Sweden

More than 70 British legislators have urged the government to make sure WikiLeaks found

er Julian Assange faces Swedish justice if prosecutors there reopen a rape allegation against him.

The lawmakers signed a letter late Friday urging Home Secretary Sa

jid Javid to “do everything you can to champion action that will ens

ure Julian Assange can be extradited to Sweden in the event Sweden makes an extradition request.”

Sweden suspended its investigation of serious sexual misconduct two years ago because Assange wa

s beyond their reach while he was living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London with political asylum status.

He was arrested Thursday after Ecuador withdrew his asylum a

nd is now in British custody facing an extradition request

from the United States on charges of conspiring to break into a Pentagon computer.

He is in Belmarsh Prison in southeast London wait

ing to be sentenced for jumping bail in Britain, and plans to fight extradition to the US.

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It’s more than just dance: both consider the ball a

 window to Viennese social traditions, classical music, and Austrian culture.

While recommending three must-see Austrian cities for first-time visitors, ambass

ador Stift gave a surprising answer. While well-known cities like capital Vienna with its iconic concert hall, Mus

ikverein, and Salzburg , once home to Mozart, both make the cut, that doesn’t tell the full story.

Brice Péan, who studied at ski resort Innsbruck, showed his know

ledge of China, mentioning Hallstatt, a small Austrian town modeled on a Chi

nese housing development, as an increasingly popular destination for Chinese tourists.

Consider this video a warm-up for tonight’s ball. If you can’t ma

ke it, stay with China Daily’s app and you’ll have a chance to win a guest gift bag.

We’re sending 10 of these gift bags to readers in our next episode. Stay tuned.

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