hinese Vice Premier Liu He will visit the US on Thursday and

Friday to continue high-level trade negotiations. His new title as Chinese President Xi Jinpi

ng’s special envoy indicates the importance and authoritativeness of the talks. As pre

paration for the event, consultations at vice-ministerial-level between China and the US were recovered on Tuesday.

The world’s stock markets surged Monday due to the optimistic prospects on the deals that Beijin

g and Washington are expected to make. US President Donald Trump praised “big progress” in the

trade deal on Twitter. His words further stoked the stock markets of the US, which reached the highest in two m

onths and so increased pressure on the Trump administration to close the deal with China.

Analysts believe that if the two countries couldn’t come to an agreement, and as a result the US imposes more tariffs on Chinese prod

ucts while China responds with fiercer countermeasures, it would be a catastrophic strike to global stock markets.

In terms of avoiding such blows, the Trump administration is probably the most pres

sured. Thus in general, by the end of the trade negotiations, China and the US have become more psychologically equal.

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Modi’s visit to disputed region imperils thaw in ties

Recently, China and India were engaged in a jagged excha

nge of words over Modi’s visit to South Tibet, a mountainous region under substantial dispute b

etween the two Asian giants. Although China’s stance on the boundary issue is cons

istent and crystal-clear that it has never recognized the so-called “A

runachal Pradesh” and is firmly opposed to any Indian leaders’ presence there, it was Modi who has repeatedly touched the raw nerve.

Such exchange – though it has happened in the past during China’s Spring Festivals in February 2015 and February 2018 – is p

articularly noteworthy: Modi’s latest visit followed the in

formal leadership summit in Wuhan in April 2018 which was widely seen as the key effort

from both sides to improve diplomatic ties and rebuild trust since the 73-day-long armed standoff in Doklam.

Such actions by Modi would inevitably affect the progress

ade by both sides, further complicating the boundary issue and exacerbating mutual suspicion.

Modi’s recent presence in South Tibet was largely driven b

y electoral considerations, aimed at mobilizing support for Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ahe

ad of the general elections, which are due in India in April and May 2019 to constitute the 17th Lok Sabha.

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Second, out of expectations of politicians from powerful

countries, who claim their nations represent public interest, globalism is becoming a tool in the fight between capitalist forces an

d national will. As a result, state power is eroded by capital, leading to alienation and political strains in some countries.

It is believed that some countries cannot bear the negative effects of globalization. The main reason for t

his is that capital is equipped with increasingly powerful characteristics that weaken nations’ capa

bility to control their capital and eliminates sovereign states’ ability to embody the will of the people.

The hit on state power by capital not only leads to financial chaos, triggering financial and economic crise

s, but can also generate social and political woes. Western countries’ easing financial regulations resulted in the 2008 financial c

risis. In recent years, developed countries are experiencing increasing economic and political challenges, which a

ctually are extensions of the 2008 financial crisis. Some of them are yet to be addressed.

Economic liberalization faces challenges in the developed and developing world.

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As the West steps up its criticism of Myanmar over the Roh

and Rakhine issues, the country’s relations with the West have deteriorated. China is one of the few powers Myanmar can rely on. There is vast cooperation po

tential between the two countries. China and Myanmar can advance industrial cooperation under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative,

the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, the China-Myanmar Economic Corridor and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor. How to

unleash Myanmar’s huge development potential with the help of China should be placed on the NLD government’s planning agenda.

As Myanmar’s largest neighbor, China will continue to play an active role in promoting Myanmar’s national reconciliation and addressing the Rakh

ine issue as well as build mechanism for talks. It will assist Myanmar as much as it can. When inv

esting in Myanmar, Chinese enterprises should pay attention to their social responsibility. They should also ad

dress local people’s suspicions and misunderstandings on Chinese-invested projects. We have reasons to believe that th

e prospect for China-Myanmar cooperation under the Belt and Road framework is promising.

The author is a professor at Center for China’s Neighbor Diplomacy Studies and School of International Studies, Yunn

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Washington alleged that INF failed because Moscow did not

ply with INF and Beijing was not bound by the treaty. These were its main excuses for the withdrawal.

Germany believes that the more countries involved in INF, the better. However, ma

ny European countries can never understand the security risks and the urgency to strengthen national defense in other regions.

The INF Treaty was signed by the US and the Soviet Union. It was a compromise bet

ween the two superpowers with the same level of military power to ease their confrontations.

Although China is now much stronger than it was in the past, its nuclear power and compreh

ensive military strength are far from being equal to those of the US and conducting negotiations on an equal footing.

The Europeans are clear that the US withdrawal from the INF Treaty is part of its America First agenda and an abandonment of its international obligations.

At the Munich security conference, Merkel and European countries criticized recent US security policies. But on the issue of the

INF treaty, Merkel snubbed China to serve US interests, reflecting the selfishness of Germans and some Europeans.

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meets with trade negotiatorsites important progress in

ina would like to address the problems of economic and trade frictions with the United States in a cooperative way to promo

te the conclusion of a deal accepted by both sides, President Xi Jinping said on Friday.

Xi made the remark while meeting with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuch

in in Beijing. The meeting came after the conclusion of two days of high-level economic and trade consultations.

Xi added that certain principles are necessary for cooperation.

Chinese and US consultation teams made important progress for the curre

nt stage, and the two negotiating teams will meet again in Washington next week for f

urther discussions, Xi said. He added that the both nations should make more efforts for a win-win deal.

The two countries’ economic and trade teams have had frequent and helpful consultatio

ns since December, Xi said. He has emphasized many times that cooperation is the best choice for China and the US.

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Unexpected twist in Gui case embarrasses Swedish FM

There has been a new unexpected twist in the case of Gui Minhai, and this time, the Swedish Ambassador to China Anna Lindstedt is involved.

Gui Minhai was born in China and later became a naturalized Swedish citizen. He was a Hong Kong-based bookseller be

fore being sued in the Chinese mainland in 2015. That lawsuit strained relations between China and Sweden.

His daughter, Angela Gui, has recently detailed a bizarre account of her visit to Stockholm, which has

embarrassed the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Angela Gui, who grew up in Sweden, now live

s in Britain where she is studying for a PhD in history at university. She gave her account in a media interview last we

ek and made an announcement Wednesday on her blog. Gui said that Ambassador Lindstedt contacted her in mid-January, inviting her to go to Sto

ckholm to meet two Chinese businessmen, who Lindstedt trusted, to discuss a new approach to her father’s case.

Angela Gui said she went to Stockholm in late January where she met two Chinese businessmen in the presence of Lindstedt. In

her statement, she said that the two businessmen asked her to stop all media engagements and public comment in exch

ange for her father’s release or commutation. According to Gui, Lindstedt supported the plan and said t

hat if not, the relationship between Sweden and China would otherwise be further undermined.

Angela Gui said that after the meeting, she called the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs for confirm

ation. “They told me they hadn’t had the slightest idea this whole affair was taking place. They hadn’t even been informed the amb

assador was in the country,” she wrote. In her account of what happened, she not only gave details of the meeting,

but also described how she was feeling threatened and how the whole arrangement seemed suspicious.

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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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tal transformation”, there is already a victory sign coming fro

The country generated about 7.6ZB data last year, around 0.7ZB more than the US, the report said.

In addition, it said data created and replicated in China is expected to outpace the global average by 3 percent annually.

Chinese tech companies, such as Alibaba Group and Tencent Holdings Ltd, h

ave set an example in using data to improve customer service in the financial sector.

The report said Chinese digital payment platforms Alipay and WeChat Pay are able to provide personalize

d financial services tailored to customers’ specific behaviors and preferences with the help of massive user data.

The report also mentioned the use of personal information has raised concerns as data may be utilized to build beh

aving or responding models of users that can be taken advantage of by advertisers or for other purposes.

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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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