hina, Italy sign BRI MoU to advance connectivitynese Presid

ROME — China and Italy signed here Saturday a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to jointly advance the con

struction of the Belt and Road during Chinese President Xi Jinping’s state visit to the country.

The two sides welcome the signing of the intergovernmental MoU on jointly advancin

g the Belt and Road construction, said a joint communique issued by the two countries.

The two sides realize the huge potential of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) in promoting con

nectivity, and stand ready to strengthen the alignment of the BRI and Trans-European Transport Networks and

deepen the cooperation in ports, logistics, marine transportation and other areas, the communique said.

The two sides expressed willingness to join efforts under the Asian Infrastru

cture Investment Bank (AIIB) to advance connectivity in line with the AIIB’s mission and functions.

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High-tech manufacturing, the service industry and the digi

ital economy will be the new engines for the economy, while some traditional driv

ing forces, such as injecting funds into the market, are losing momentum, Zhu said.

China’s total GDP exceeded 90 trillion yuan ($13.4 trillion) in 2018, and the per capita GDP was

about $9,700. Economists predict that if the country maintains growth of at least 6 percent this

year, which is likely given the current momentum, its per capita GDP this year would surpass $10,000.

That means China would move closer to the standards for a “high-inco

me country” — above $12,736 in per capital GDP — set by the World Bank in 2015.

However, a productivity slowdown, aging population and unbalanced regional development could be among the “bot

tlenecks” that constrain China in becoming a high-income country, economists said.

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Given the pressure of the slowing global economy, a high

degree of leveraging maintains the top risk for China’s economy, thus

measures should continue to reduce the debt-to-GDP ratio “in proper order”, said Lou Jiwei, ch

airman of the National Council for Social Security Fund and a former finance minister.

It is necessary to build a long-term and efficient mechanism for financial regulati

on and fiscal supervision, and to prevent potential risks in the property sector, Lou said.

The three-day China Development Forum has a guest list of more tha

n 150 international delegates, including global industry leaders.A new round of high-level

economic and trade consultations, headed by United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on the US

side, will kick off on March 28 in Beijing, the White House confirmed on Saturday.

“At the direction of President Donald J. Trump, United States Trade Representative

Robert Lighthizer and Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin will travel to Beijing, China, for prin

cipal-level meetings starting on March 28, 2019, to continue negotiations aimed at improving the trade rel

ationship between the United States and China,” the White House Press Secretary said in a statement.

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Thai voters cast ballots in first general election since 2014 coup

BANGKOK – Thai voters flock to polling stations across the c

ountry on Sunday for the country’s first general election since the 2014 coup.

Eligible voters have been lining up at polling station since 6:00 am local time. Prime Min

ister Prayut Chan-o-cha cast his ballot at a station in Bangkok at about 8:30 am local time.

The prime minister asked voters to use their rights properly to bring about unity and better development of the country.

High ranking government officials and leaders of political parties also showed up at polling stations in the morning.

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwan reiterated that security of the coun

try is the top priority of the government, ruling out political unrest during election.

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Paving stone dedicated to ‘friend’ from China unveiled at

Representatives from the Chinese embassy in the UK visited Uppingham School on Thursday, attending the unv

eiling ceremony for a paving stone dedicated to Charles Cao Quin, senior advisor on China-UK partnerships at the school.

Over the past years, Charles Cao Quin of the Beijing Conservatory has worked closely with Uppingham

School, an English boarding school famed for its rich tradition of all-around education, especially of music.

The school flew the Chinese national flag in tribute to the visit of

Wang Yongli, minister counselor for education at the Chinese embassy in London.

Charles was the first person from China honored with an engraved paving slab in his name.

Doctor Richard Maloney, headmaster of Uppingham School, praised that Charles has contri

buted a lot to the communication between China and the UK in terms of music and education partnership.

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In unusual but true stories this week, we have a surreal an

s creator, a spineless hedgehog recovering by massages, a performer transforming unusual items into musical instrume

nts, a restaurant beneath waters opening in Norway, and creating realistic masks replicating your pets’ faces.

All the odd and interesting anecdotes from around the world are her

e in our review.This one-of-a-kind graphy performance project has seen an artist alt

er ego create a series of surreal and wild self-portraits – where everyday objects are stuck all over his face.

The absurd works of David Henry Nobody Jr. feature face attachments ranging

from ice creams and toothbrushes to hamburger meat and even pictures of Donald Trump.

Not stopping with those additions, David Nobody – the creation of artis

t David Henry Brown Jr. – has even included peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and plastic toys i

n his face shots. To date, David estimates he has taken around 700 self-portraits in this style since starting the project in 2014.

qianhuaeu.com

Perhaps Marquis believes that the Italian government does

not know how to make its own decisions. But if he really knows anythin

g about debt traps, he should advise the US administration how to stop its mon

strous national debt of about $22 trillion from continuing to climb at an alarming rate.

Besides, if Marquis believes the US has a better vision and a superior infrastruct

ure connectivity plan than the BRI, he should let the world know about it instead of slandering China like a loser-a

trait evident among the senior US officials who coerced European countries to not include Huawei in their 5G networks.

Italy might be the first G7 member to endorse the BRI, but it is not the first European Union country to do so. Port

ugal, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Greece, Poland and Hungary have all inked BRI deals with China.

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raujo said IFRC is sending staff to Malawi, Mozambique and

  Zimbabwe to help families who don’t have access to phone or internet find their missing relatives.

  About 1.7 million people are affected by Cyclone Idai in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, according to UNICEF.

  ”The situation on the ground remains critical,” said Christophe Boulierac, UNICEF sp

okesperson in Geneva, describing the scene in Beira.”There is no electricity or running water.”

  Thousands of people are congregating in informal camps in desperate c

onditions, according to UNICEF representative Marco Luigi Corsi, who has traveled to affected areas.

  Eyewitness account

  Taylor, 62, who has lived in Mozambique for 10 years, became stranded on Satur

day on the highway to Zimbabwe from Beira, where Cyclone Idai made landfall, after flood waters one-meter high blocked the road.

  At 3 a.m. on Monday, he abandoned his car and joined the stre

ams of people wading in the pitch black through the waters along the raised highway.

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He said he was asked by his employer to stay home for

mental illness and not go back to work until he recovered.”The utmost goal is like Zhuge Liang (of the Three Kingd

oms), who became a senior official to serve the country,” Shen said. “What comes second is to be like Du Fu (a reno

wned poet in Tang Dynasty known for his patriotism), who always puts the country’s and the people’s interests first.”

“Over the past 26 years, no one from the office has ever asked about me,” Shen told Red

Star News. The auditing office of Xuhui district hasn’t responded to comment as of press time.

Shen also denied online rumors that he graduated from Fudan University and once lost a daughter to a car crash.

“I have never been married, so how could I have a daughter,” he retorted. “Me, a Fudan graduate? Fudan was far out of my league.”

After days of being bombarded with visits and interviews from curious citizens or online streamers, who

are tapping into his sudden popularity for public exposure, Shen said he hopes he can be left alone so as to read more books.

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In the latest case, which was discovered on March 12 in

Linshui county of Guang’an, Sichuan province, a transport truck carrying 150

 pigs, nine of them dead, was seized at a toll station.

It was the second case in March after an outbreak that killed 20 pigs on a

breeding farm in the Guangxi Zhuang autonomous region was confirmed on March 7.

The next step, Yu said, is to maintain the momentum of the ongoing disease preven

tion and control measures and strengthen oversight over the slaughtering sector.

On Friday, the ministry launched checks on slaughterhouses nationwide and

ordered them to carry out self-inspections.

Yu stressed the need to secure supplies of live pigs and pork products.

The domestic output of live pigs in China has been declining since the second half of last year beca

use of the disease, according to Yang Hanchun, a professor at the College of

Veterinary Medicine of China Agricultural University.

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