Wang said the Sino-US trade talks have made important

and substantive progress thanks to efforts from both sides. Meanwhile the talks face some serious problems which need to be resolved.

The top diplomat said that as long as the negotiations meet the general direction of China’s reform an

d opening-up policy, adhere to China’s basic needs about high-quality development and serve the com

mon interests of the Chinese and US people, the negotiator teams from both sides could have the capability and w

isdom to settle their reasonable demands and eventually achieve a win-win agreement.

Wang said China insists on upholding national sovereignty, safeguarding the inter

ests of its people and defending national honor when negotiating with any country.

According to the General Administration of Customs, trade between

China and the US in the first four months stood at 1.1 trillion yuan ($160 billion).

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Now that it has reached middle-income status, China’s eco

nomic strategy will focus on creating a highly competitive domestic market that forces com

panies to produce high-value goods so they can pay high wages to highly skilled people.

Because of its long experience in manufacturing, much of tha

t push will be focused on higher value-added production, using the new technologies of r

obotics, artificial intelligence, the internet of things and 5G. This is the only way to avoid the middle-income trap.

The reform and opening-up policies are exactly the kinds of market-driven reforms

needed to make this happen. The Chinese government is investing heavily in research and development, but it sho

uld be noted that the R&D spending as a percentage of GDP is still lower than that of the US.

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Not only are there missing links on the causality chai

 between long-term structural factors and actual economic performance, it is also unclear how long those factors would take to constrain GDP growth to a part

cular level. In fact, 20 years ago, the same long-term factors were used to warn of a possible fall in Chinese GDP growth.

Because of the complexity of China’s growth trajectory, many economists seem to base their assessments of potenti

al on performance. After every drop in China’s GDP growth since the second quarter of 2012-when growth fell be

low 8 percent-economists have emerged to declare that performance was in line with potential.

Difficult to determine potential growth rate

To be sure, there are various estimates of China’s potential growth rate, ranging from 5 perc

ent to 8 percent. But it is difficult to determine which is reliable. For one thing, there is reason to believe that

most estimates fail to discount cyclical factors adequately when calculating the long-term trend.

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Embrace exhibition through greener lifestyle at the

The Beijing International Horticultural Exhibition opened just two days before the May holiday, giving

the public a close-up view of state-of-the-art gardens created by horticulturists from around the world.

China hosted a similar exhibition in Kunming, Yunnan province, in 1

999. In the two decades since, the social and economic situations in China have unde

rgone tremendous changes. A growing awareness of environmental protection is one of them.

Two decades ago, the Chinese people embraced the Kunming horticu

ltural show as a novelty and curiosity because the countr

y at that time did not have many opportunities to host large international gatherings.

Economic development at the time was the top priority of the country,

which explains why the news media were so interested in reporting that 15 billion yu

an ($2.23 billion) in economic and trade deals were inked during the exhibition.

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Some facts may be twisted and distorted to sensatio

nal proportions. But nothing can obliterate the tangible benefits the development initiative has brought. In less than six

years, the nascent Belt and Road are already changing development landscapes in multiple places and dime

nsions. Thanks to the initiative, East Africa has seen its first expressway, the Maldives its first cross-sea bridge, Belar

us its own car-manufacturing enterprise, and landlocked Kazakhstan finally has access to the sea.

And while China-Cambodia trade may not look to be in perfect balan

ce at this point, Belt and Road cooperation between the two neighbors is laying a solid fo

undation for the latter’s future progress. Take the Sihanoukville Special Economic Zone for instance. An exem

plary project under the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, it is expected to host 300 enterprises, create 100,0

00 industrial jobs, and serve as a resident-friendly new community housing 200,000 people.

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AI major now available at universitiesigence-powered

Universities in China will welcome the first group o

f undergraduate students majoring in artificial intelligence in September.

According to a list issued by the Ministry of Education, 35 universities received approval to establish th

e four-year undergraduate AI-related majors amid the country’s drive to build a strong AI talent pool.

They include many prestigious universities such as Beijing Jiao

tong University, Beihang University, Nanjing University and Xi’an Jiaotong University.

Lin Youfang, vice-dean of the School of Computer and Information Technology at Beijing Jiaotong University, said the scho

ol plans to enroll about 30 undergraduate students majoring in AI in September.

There might be more students majoring in AI who transfer from other m

ajors through a selection process if the new major proves to be successful, he said.

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Inside Beijing’s must-attend April eventbassador to

Guests like Austrian ambassador to China Friedrich Stift, p

erformances from the Strauss Festival Orchestra Vienna, and reality TV star Allen Wu as

host have made the event the most talked-about on Beijing’s April social calendar.

The dapperly attendees and the venue at the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa Center, a lux

ury hotel in downtown Beijing, will make April 13 a night of waltz, high fashion and haute cuisine.

With tickets priced 1,500 yuan ($224), the ball has sold out every ye

ar during its five-year history in Beijing, according to organizer, the Kempinski Hotel.

In this video interview with China Daily’s website, both the ambassador and Brice Péan, mana

ging director of the Kempinski Hotel, give a preview of what to expect at this year’s ball.

www.yuyingleyou.com.cn

sees big growth in Marcha supermarket in Lianyungang

China’s consumer price index (CPI), a main gauge of inflation, rose 2.3 p

ercent year-on-year in March, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Thursday.

The increase was up from 1.5 percent in February.

Food prices climbed 4.1 percent year-on-year in March, up from 0.7 perc

ent in February, yet on a month-on-month basis food prices went down 0.9 percent, the NBS said.

Due to low vegetable yields in spring and cold rainy weather, prices of fresh vegetables posted a fast growth of 16.2 perce

nt year-on year in March, contributing 0.42 percentage points to the year-on-year CPI growth.

The growth of the pork price rebounded after declining for 25 consecutive months, rising 5.1 percent year-on-year in March.

On a month-on-month basis, the pork price moderately went up 1.2 percent on average nati

onwide as outbreaks of African swine fever were gradually contained, according to the NBS.

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Flight systems, however, typically are built with a

 backup system so there can be no single point of failure. Since the crashes of Max jets in Indonesi

a in October and Ethiopia last month, Boeing has modified design of the anti-stall device to include two sensors on all aircraft.

The FAA allows airlines to make minor modifications in previously certified

aircraft to meet their operational needs, a rule Boeing followed in building the 737 Max for

foreign carriers. Ethiopian Airlines and Indonesia’s Lion Air — involved in fatal crashes five months apart — repo

rtedly declined to buy two add-on safety devices that might have helped the pilots keep the doomed planes in the sky.

Neither airline purchased the “angle of attack” system display for readi

ngs of two sensors rather than one and a “disagree light” to be activated if the sensors prod

uce conflicting readings. The Lion Air crash in October killed 189 passengers and crew.

Airlines around the world, including China and the US, have flown the 737 Max, introduced in 2018, without incident.

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Meanwhile, automakers’ recommended retail priwas

 on a decreasing streak. Imported models of Ford Motor (China) abated as much as 34,000 yuan, compared with Volkswagen Multivan’s highest cut of

13,300 yuan and some models of FAW Toyota’s 11,000 yuan, said Chinanews. As China International Capital Corporation Lim

ited analyzed, automobile, real estate and medicine industries will enjoy the largest scale of tax reduction; and the bigge

st rise in net profit as a result of tax cuts will go to coal, food and beverage, electricity industries.

Nur Bekri, former head of the National Energy Administration, has been arrested

for taking bribes, said the Supreme People’s Procuratorate on Tuesday, Xinhua reported.

Nur Bekri, also former deputy head of the National Development and

Reform Commission, was investigated by the Communist Party of China Central Com

mission for Discipline Inspection and the National Supervisory Commission.

The former chairman of the Xinjiang regional governm

ent was named new head of the National Energy Administration on Dec 31, 2014.

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