Chinese autos looking to meet global demand

Consumers experience a BYD electric vehicle at a dealership in Mengzi, Yunnan province, in May. XUE YINGYING/FOR CHINA DAILY

More than 1,000 years ago, an overland trading route starting from present-day Xi’an, Shaanxi province, transported silk and porcelain during the Tang Dynasty (618-907) to West Asia and Europe. Today, the Silk Road still exists, but its cargo has evolved to new energy products, with electric vehicles leading the charge.

Due to cost-effectiveness, improved quality and efficient after-sales service, Chinese new energy vehicles have steadily gained a larger market share by offering affordable solutions to green transition drives in more countries, especially developing economies.

Most recently, Chinese NEVs and auto parts manufacturers are increasingly setting up production facilities overseas, as their foreign clients demand quick responses to their needs and on-time delivery amid heightened supply chain security concerns — all within the context of deglobalization and geopolitical tensions. Central Europe and Mexico are becoming key destinations for investment.

Although some Western politicians and media outlets claim that China is creating excess capacity and dumping products at low prices overseas, experts and business executives argue the notion is unfounded, saying that the growing overseas footprint of Chinese EVs and auto parts makers not only facilitates the global green transition and benefits users by reducing costs, but also offers substantial opportunities for global manufacturers.

“Some foreign media have inaccurately linked China’s export growth in recent years to overcapacity, labeling it as ‘dumping’ without basis. The strong export performance of Chinese branded vehicles is due to improved product quality, technological upgrades and enhanced business services,” said Fu Bingfeng, deputy secretary-general of the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

The association said that in the first two months, about 831,000 vehicles were exported, representing a 21.9 percent year-on-year increase. Among these, 285,000 were NEVs, marking an 11.1 percent year-on-year increase.

Responding to “overcapacity “accusations, Fu said the current utilization rate of China’s NEV production capacity now exceeds 70 percent, which is within a reasonable range.

“China’s automotive industry is currently undergoing a transition period (from traditional fueled cars to NEVs). During this transition, investing ahead of market demand is a normal development strategy for the industry. As the market share of NEVs continues to rise, demand for traditional fuel vehicles will gradually be replaced. Consequently, companies will refurbish existing factories and transition to producing NEVs, which is a dynamic conversion process and needs time to adjust production capacity,” Fu said.

US attempt to re-establish strategic influence in Africa is to intensify competition

Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

Illustration: Chen Xia/GT

Recently, during Kenyan President William Ruto’s visit to Washington, US President Joe Biden pledged to designate Kenya as the country’s first “major non-NATO ally” in sub-Saharan Africa. The move underscores America’s “new understanding” of Africa and the strategic implications of intensifying competition for influence by using regional powers.

First, Kenya can strengthen the US’ military presence in East Africa. Although Biden announced a new version of the US Africa Strategy and held the US-Africa Leaders Summit, he has yet to visit Africa as president or fulfilled his promise of supporting the African continent made at the summit. 

By welcoming Ruto’s visit, the Biden administration aims to repair Washington’s neglectful handling of African issues. Ruto’s visit not only marked the sixth state visit received by the Biden administration but also made him the first African head of state to make an official state visit to the US since 2008. Biden personally welcomed Ruto at the south portico of the White House, and a grand state banquet attended by about 500 guests was held after the talks, a ceremony typically reserved for close allies of the US.

Moreover, designating Kenya as a major non-NATO ally of the US aims to strengthen offshore control over the African continent. Currently, a total of 18 countries, including Israel, Brazil, and the Philippines, are designated by the US as non-NATO allies, all of which are regional “pivot” countries. 

While there is no mutual defense agreement, this designation will deliver additional US assistance to Kenya, including a new cooperation program worth approximately $7 million aimed at helping the Kenyan National Police Service. This move, under the guise of counterterrorism, actually serves to strengthen US military influence in East Africa and to allow it to play a leading role in regional security agenda.

Second, Kenya can help maintain the division of power between the US and Europe in Africa. The current US Africa policy largely continues the ideological competition mindset from the Cold War era, with the basic consensus of the US respecting and maintaining European allies’ “control” over Africa. This is also a key reason for the setbacks encountered by the Biden administration in West Africa. 

To show respect to its European allies, the US based its Africa Command in Europe, and only left approximately 1,000 America troops in Nigeria in the name of counterterrorism. 

However, a coup last year changed the situation. After expelling French troops and ambassadors, Nigeria demanded US soldiers leave the country and the US has announced to withdraw all military personnel before September. Against this backdrop, Kenya is the “best choice” as the US tries to maintain a balance between maintaining allies and ideological competition. 

Biden hopes to strengthen the military partnership with Kenya to reverse the troubled Africa policy and expects Kenya to become an agent of the US and its European allies, assisting in resolving conflicts on the African continent and other regions. 

The Ruto government also appears to be “cooperative,” not only closely following the US lead in multilateral voting, but also actively participating in US-backed overseas peacekeeping mission and sending troops to Haiti to help quell the gang violence there.

Furthermore, the move could intensify competition with China for influence in the region. With one billion people and abundant key mineral resources, Africa is an important link in the global value chain. The US used to view Africa only as an arena of ideological competition, without really examining its own strategic values. In recent years, as China-Africa relations continue to escalate, the US has stepped up its presence in Africa, but Africa’s importance is not high. However, a Gallup poll last year showed that the US has fallen behind China in soft power rankings in Africa.

The Western media concluded that historically, the West has seen Africa as a problem that needs to be solved, while China, Turkey and other Arab countries see Africa as an opportunity to seize. This type of engagement is popular because Africa really feels being taken seriously.

It is hard for the competition-driven US Africa strategy to do so. For Kenya, the US has pledged substantial financial support to help alleviate its debt burden and has promised to build a parallel highway along the Chinese-built Mombasa-Nairobi Standard Gauge Railway. However, it remains uncertain as to whether these commitments can truly be implemented.

Including Kenya in the quasi-security alliance not only underscores America’s emphasis on Africa as the “continent of the future” but also reflects its unease about the region. While the US may currently need Africa’s support in dealing with many global issues, like the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the Palestine-Israel conflict, it is hard to fully transform Kenya into a de facto voice for its interests in Africa.

The author is professor with School of International Relations and Diplomacy, Beijing Foreign Studies University. [email protected]

China’s badminton team eye gold sweep at Paris Olympics

Editor’s Note:

Earlier in May, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) unveiled the list of qualified participants for the Paris Olympics, with 173 athletes competing in five disciplines. The Chinese team is the only team in the world set to participate in all five events.

The only country ever to achieve a clean sweep of gold medals, accomplished at the 2012 Summer Olympics, China has been dominating badminton at the Summer Olympics.  

However, their Olympics performances after London hit a slump, as Team China finished the Tokyo Olympics with only two gold and four silver medals, bouncing back from a lackluster Rio Olympics performance of two golds, one bronze in 2016. 

However, lately the Chinese national team players showed quality form at the Thomas and Uber Cup finals, winning the two prestigious team titles for the first time in 12 years, raising hopes that the team could repeat the feat they accomplished at the London Olympics. 

In this installment of the Road to Paris series, Global Times reporter Lu Wenao offers insight into the Chinese shuttlers squad that bears China’s gold medal hopes.

Shi Yuqi Photo: VCGZ

Shi Yuqi Photo: VCG

Winning the Thomas and Uber Cup finals was a confidence booster for the Chinese national badminton team’s Olympic campaign this year, Chinese Badminton Association chief Zhang Jun said, noting that the team looks ready to restore its pride in the sport. He stated that the national team’s goal for the Paris Olympics remains five gold medals, although there are strong competitors in every discipline. 

Thomas Lund, secretary-general of the BWF, also told the Global Times that Team China players consistently perform well at the elite level and always provide strong competition for their opponents.

“China has tremendous badminton infrastructure and support networks to develop a deep talent pool across the country, which has constantly produced champions over many years,” Lund told the Global Times. 

“In recent years, we have been fortunate to witness new champions emerging, and traditional powerhouses being tested to the limit.” 

With a blend of seasoned champions and emerging stars, the team is well-equipped to tackle the challenges ahead.

Shi Yuqi: Men’s singles maestro

Shi Yuqi has emerged as a beacon of hope for China in men’s singles badminton now that aces Lin Dan and Chen Long have retired from the sport. Shi is now shouldering the responsibility of being the captain of the national team. 

His journey to fame began at a young age, when he showcased his talent in various junior tournaments. By 2016, he had already started making waves on the senior circuit, culminating in a silver medal at the BWF World Championships in 2018.

Shi’s play style is characterized by his agility and tactical intelligence, which have often left his opponents scrambling. Despite facing injuries that hampered his progress, Shi’s ­resilience saw him bounce back to claim victory at the All England Open in 2018, one of the sport’s most prestigious titles. 

At the Thomas Cup held in Chengdu earlier in May, Shi contributed to the team’s success by winning all his six singles matches.

“Good performance comes from managing psychological challenges well,” Shi told the Global Times. “If you carry too much pressure and responsibility, it can ­actually hinder your performance. Honestly, there will definitely be pressure, but I think handling these mental hurdles well is something I’ve been doing ­effectively during this period.”

As he prepares for the Paris Olympics, Shi is determined to convert his past experiences into Olympic glory, aiming to add to China’s illustrious badminton legacy.

Chen Yufei: Women’s singles sensation

Chen Yufei’s crowning achievement came at the ­Tokyo Olympics, where she secured the gold medal, reaffirming China’s dominance in women’s singles. Her style of play, which combines relentless defense with strategic offense, has made her a formidable opponent on the court. 

“My opponents always come at me with the mind-set of challenging me, and their mental state is often better than mine,” she told the Global Times, noting she had to make adjustments after initially struggling to adapt.

“Over the past year, I’ve been slowly adjusting. Now, I feel that every opponent has something I can learn from,” she noted.

The Olympic campaign undoubtedly presents many challenges, such as maintaining physical health and preparing for opponents’ targeted strategies. With this humble and modest attitude, Chen is tackling the challenges in her buildup toward the Paris Olympics. 

“Although I’m not in the best condition right now, I’m still in the first tier. I need to be more confident. If I maintain a good physical condition, I think I still have a good chance to defend my title,” she said.

“But this process will definitely be very difficult, so it’s about taking things one step at a time and handling every detail in the process as I strive to achieve this goal,” she concluded.

As Chen heads to Paris, expectations are high for her to continue her winning streak and inspire a new generation of badminton enthusiasts in China.

Liang Weikeng &Wang Chang: Men’s doubles dynamos

The dynamic duo Liang Weikeng and Wang Chang in men’s doubles have become household names in Chinese badminton. Both born in the early 2000s, their partnership began in their teenage years and quickly blossomed into one of the most formidable pair ups in international badminton.

Their breakthrough came at the 2021 world championships, where they secured a bronze medal, showcasing their potential on the global stage. Liang and Wang’s synergy on the court is their biggest asset, with their complementary playing styles allowing them to dominate their opponents. 

“We have won championships, we’ve also been runners-up, and of course, there have been times when we didn’t perform well,” Wang said. “Experiencing failure helps us grow and teaches us how to handle future matches.”

Though many Chinese badminton fans are still skeptical of the pair’s consistency, their journey in the sport, now ranked at world No.2, has already inspired many young people to pick up a racket.  

Chen Qingchen & Jia Yifan Photo: VCG

Chen Qingchen & Jia Yifan Photo: VCG

Chen Qingchen & Jia Yifan: Women’s doubles queens

Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan have established themselves as the queens of women’s doubles badminton. The pair, known as Fan-Chen domestically, began their partnership in their early teens and have since become one of the most successful pairs in the sport’s history.

Their journey to fame includes multiple titles, with notable victories at the world championships in 2017, 2021, 2022 and 2023. Their ability to anticipate each other’s moves and their relentless attack style have earned them numerous accolades. 

“Whenever I step onto the court, I really want to win the game with my partner. The two of us are actually like one person. With such great pressure, there are only the two of us facing it on the court, and no one else can help us,” Chen said of her partnership with Jia. 

“Before we go on court, we exchange a smile, a smile that only the two of us can understand at that moment. I think there won’t be a third person in this world who can understand our feelings at that moment, so this feeling is very precious.”

Jia said her partner Chen plays “like a spring.” 

“The higher the pressure is, the higher she will bounce back. She is not someone who forsakes,” Jia said.

Though they suffered a bitter Olympic final defeat in Tokyo in 2021, the duo is currently sitting in first place in the women’s doubles ranking thanks to their dedication and unwavering determination.

Zheng Siwei & Huang Yaqiong Photo: VCGZ

Zheng Siwei & Huang Yaqiong Photo: VCG

Zheng Siwei & Huang Yaqiong: Mixed doubles magicians

Zheng Siwei and Huang Yaqiong, China’s mixed doubles magicians, have captivated audiences with their seamless coordination and unmatched skill. 

Both players boast impressive individual resumes, but it is their partnership that has truly made them stand out. Since teaming up in 2017, the pair, known as Ya-Si in China, have won numerous titles, including three world championships. 

A Tokyo Olympics final defeat to teammates Wang Yilu and Huang Dongping has propelled the duo to continue honing their skills, both physically and mentally.

“Our mind-set is much better for this Olympics compared to the last one. Previously, we didn’t know what the Olympics would be like, so we prepared for the last Olympics by training intensely and aggressively,” Huang revealed. 

“That approach wasn’t effective and led to injuries, which affected our training and competition. This time, we will maintain a calm mind-set. As we age, our recovery isn’t as quick as it was during the previous Olympics. We need to ensure we train with the highest quality within our capabilities.”

Their dynamic playing style, characterized by swift exchanges and powerful smashes, has made them a formidable force in mixed doubles badminton. As they head to the Paris Olympics, Zheng and Huang are determined to reinforce supremacy in the sport.

Efforts to boost EVs signal China’s determination to advance emission reduction

Illustration: Liu Xiangya/GT

Illustration: Liu Xiangya/GT

While recent weeks seem to have been dominated by the stepped-up rhetoric of trade tensions and news about protectionist tariffs imposed by the US on electric vehicles (EVs) made in China, there’s no doubt that China’s new-energy manufacturing industries won’t stop moving forward. 

China’s newly released plan to lift restrictions on purchases of new-energy vehicles (NEVs) could potentially unleash domestic demand and is therefore good news for the whole supply chain. It is an integral part of China’s efforts in the areas of energy conservation and emissions reduction.

The State Council, China’s cabinet, unveiled an action plan on Wednesday to cut carbon emissions in 2024 and 2025. Energy consumption per unit of GDP will decrease by about 2.5 percent in 2024, and carbon dioxide emissions per unit of GDP will fall 3.9 percent in the same period, according to the action plan.

In order to achieve these goals, many moves can be expected to further support the development of the new-energy manufacturing industries. This will inject new momentum into China’s EV sector. For instance, the decarbonization action plan said China will accelerate the elimination of old motor vehicles and gradually lift restrictions on purchases of NEVs in various regions. 

Such efforts are expected to boost NEV sales, shore up the development of the NEV industry and consolidate China’s position as the world’s largest EV market.

The widespread attention the news captured shows that lifting restrictions on purchases of NEVs went beyond market expectations. The stronger-than-expected measures demonstrate China’s determination to boost the development of the new-energy manufacturing industries, which are essential for the decarbonization process. China won’t offer the world mere empty promises to fight climate change. Practical efforts have been made to reduce carbon emissions.

China takes its carbon peak and carbon neutrality targets seriously. The country has included its timetable for peaking carbon dioxide emissions and achieving carbon neutrality into its national plan. It has become a practical action plan. 

The direction of China’s industrial restructuring is certain: the economy has shifted gear toward a green and low-carbon model. More specifically for the auto sector, China is expected to shift faster toward NEVs and gradually reduce the proportion of gasoline-guzzling vehicles. US trade protectionism cannot hinder China’s efforts or development. The EV industry is sure to have a promising future. 

Vehicle producers will need the foresight to continuously invest in NEV-related technologies and accelerate the electrification transformation. China has huge market potential, leaving room for the sustainable development of the EV industry. Foreign companies are welcome to invest in China’s EV industry and share the economic dividends brought about by the decarbonization of the Chinese economy.

The decarbonization of the economy is a common issue for countries all over the world. The planet is on track to heat up at a much faster rate than scientists previously predicted. A host of countries have announced major commitments to significantly cut their carbon emissions. As the world’s decarbonization pace grows, some new industries such as NEVs will emerge. 

Those industries can only truly grow and get stronger through full competition. The world’s common battle to develop those emerging industries, whether it ends in success or failure, is likely to have a profound impact on the global fight against climate change.

The US, as the world’s largest cumulative emitter of greenhouse gases, should bear its responsibilities for climate change. However, the US has taken a wrong path, hindering the development of the new-energy and low-carbon industries, which is regrettable. 

As reported by the New York Times, cars and other forms of transportation are, together, the largest single source of carbon emissions generated by the US. It’s ironic that American political elites call on other countries to accelerate their plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but, in the meantime, use protectionist measures to shield obsolete US production capacity from fierce competition from Chinese companies. This will hinder the development of new-energy industries.

We sincerely hope that countries all over the world will not join the US in its protectionist actions, but instead contribute to the development of the world’s new-energy industries and global efforts to reduce emissions.

The author is a reporter with the Global Times. [email protected]

China to enhance investment and finance cooperation, promote mutually beneficial trade ties with Arab states

Photo: VCG

Photo: VCG

China is ready to work with the Arab side to put in place “five cooperation frameworks” consisting of a more dynamic framework for innovation, an expanded framework for investment and finance cooperation, a more multifaceted framework for energy cooperation, a more balanced framework for mutually beneficial economic and trade ties, and a broader framework for people-to-people exchanges.

Chinese President Xi Jinping made the remarks as he delivered a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the 10th ministerial conference of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum (CASCF) on Thursday, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

The conference adopted a series of key documents including the CASCF execution plan for 2024-2026, which set out a plan to advance cooperation in various fields such as economy, trade, investment, finance and infrastructure.

Experts said that the collaboration between China and Arab states aligns with the mutual benefits and development goals of both sides and has vast potential for growth.

China stands ready to enhance cooperation with the Arab side on artificial intelligence (AI), financial institutions, energy, free trade agreements and tourism, among other areas.

In terms of technology cooperation, China will enhance cooperation on AI to make it empower the real economy, Xi said.

For the financial sector, China supports closer collaboration among financial institutions. It welcomes Arab banks to join the Cross-border Interbank Payment System and plans to deepen exchanges and cooperation on central bank digital currencies with the Arab side, Xi said.

In energy, China will further enhance strategic cooperation with the Arab side on oil and gas, and integrate supply security with market security. China is ready to work with the Arab side on new energy technology R&D and equipment production, Xi said in the speech.

China stands ready to accelerate the negotiations on bilateral and regional free trade agreements and advance the dialogue mechanism for e-commerce cooperation. It also welcomes active participation of the Arab side in the China International Import Expo, and is willing to expand import of non-energy products from the Arab side, especially agricultural products, the Chinese president said.

China also plans to work with the Arab side to achieve the goal of 10 million two-way visits of tourists in the next five years, Xi said in the speech.

China presents the Arab side with the flags of all Arab League member states and the Arab League flag, which were brought to the China Space Station via the Shenzhou-17 spacecraft on October 26, 2023, and returned to Earth with the Shenzhou-16 spacecraft on October 31, 2023. The presentation took place at the 10th Ministerial Conference of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum in Beijing on Thursday, symbolizing the enduring China-Arab friendship. Photo: Global Times

China presents the Arab side with the flags of all Arab League member states and the Arab League flag, which were brought to the China Space Station via the Shenzhou-17 spacecraft on October 26, 2023, and returned to Earth with the Shenzhou-16 spacecraft on October 31, 2023. The presentation took place at the 10th Ministerial Conference of the China-Arab Cooperation Forum in Beijing on Thursday, symbolizing the enduring China-Arab friendship. Photo: Global Times

Niu Xinchun, executive director of the China-Arab Research Institute of Ningxia University, told the Global Times on Thursday that these moves represent the fastest-growing areas of economic cooperation between China and the Arab states, aligning with the mutual benefits and development goals of both sides. It also showed that cooperation between China and Arab countries is expanding beyond traditional energy trade to modern industries.

“As both China and the Arab states are currently undergoing industrial upgrades, there is a shift toward diversifying economic activities beyond traditional energy trade. Arab countries are now seeking to develop modern industries to reduce their reliance on oil. This economic transformation in the Arab world is in line with China’s own development needs,” Niu said.

The Middle East has always been a strategic market and there has been a trend of adopting Chinese products and technologies in the region, Hytera Communications, a Chinese producer of communications terminals with a leading global position, told the Global Times in a note on Thursday.

“The UAE, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia are leading the way in investing in new communications technologies and creating new applications,” the company said.

Bilateral cooperation has deep complementary advantages and huge potential. By deepening cooperation, both sides can achieve resource sharing and jointly promote sustained and stable economic growth, Wang Peng, an associate research fellow at the Beijing Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Thursday.

“Arab countries have abundant capital and are seeking more investment opportunities. China’s financial market is becoming increasingly mature, with a variety of financial products and investment channels. Cooperation between the two sides can promote capital flows and meet their respective financial needs,” Wang said.

The CASCF has made remarkable achievements since its establishment and yielded important outcomes in multiple aspects.

China has been the top trading partner of Arab countries for many years, with trade increasing from $36.7 billion in 2004 to $398 billion in 2023, according to customs data.

China has signed Belt and Road Initiative cooperation documents with all of the 22 Arab countries and the Arab League, under which more than 200 major projects have been implemented, benefiting nearly 2 billion people on both sides.

Papua New Guinea’s PM: Disasters caused by extraordinary weather

02:13

Prime Minister James Marape has blamed “extraordinary rainfall” and changes to weather patterns as the causes of the country’s disasters, including the landslide that may have killed thousands in Enga Province last week. Marape estimates that over 2,000 people have died. Gorethy Kenneth, a journalist with Papua New Guinea’s Post-Courier newspaper, has more details from the capital, Port Moresby.

First Kunming Biodiversity Fund projects expected before COP16

A Chinese official on Wednesday said that the recently established Kunming Biodiversity Fund will make tangible contributions to global biodiversity conservation, with its first projects to be launched this year ahead of the crucial COP16 United Nations biodiversity conference.

Zhang Yujun, an official of China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment, made the remarks at a press conference.

The fund was launched on Tuesday, when the ministry signed cooperative agreements with the UN Environment Program and the UN Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office.

The fund will provide free assistance in the form of financial, technical and capacity support for developing countries to implement the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework under the principles of multilateralism and international operations, Zhang said.

Black-headed gulls in Daguan Park in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, southwest China, November 12, 2022. /CFP

Black-headed gulls in Daguan Park in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, southwest China, November 12, 2022. /CFP

Under the framework, 23 goals have been established to support global biodiversity conservation. Zhang stressed that the fund’s projects will help deliver those goals, particularly when it comes to such areas as global ecosystem restoration and conservation, the sustainable use of biodiversity, and the control of invasive alien species.

Colombia will host COP16, the 16th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity, from October 21 to November 1, 2024.

As the chair of COP15, China has led the successful establishment of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework. In 2021, China pledged 1.5 billion yuan (over $210 million) to establish the fund.

A macaque family in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, southwest China, March 30, 2024. /CFP

A macaque family in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, southwest China, March 30, 2024. /CFP

As the largest developing country in the world, China has the heavy task of developing its economy and improving its people’s livelihoods, but it has still fulfilled its commitment with the greatest determination, Zhang said.

He called for concerted efforts from more countries, institutions and organizations to bridge the enormous funding gap in biodiversity conservation and realize the global biodiversity goals.

On the next stage of the fund’s operations, Zhang pledged that it will “improve the approval process and release it to the public as soon as possible to ensure the capital is used openly, transparently and efficiently under international rules.”

(Cover: Wanvisa water lilies blossom in Daguan Park in Kunming City, Yunnan Province, southwest China, May 29, 2024. /CFP)

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency

China set to publish carbon footprint management plan

China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment will soon publish a plan to build and implement a unified carbon footprint management system, marking another step forward in the country’s green drive.

A carbon footprint is the sum of greenhouse gas emissions and removals by a product, individual, household, institution or business. A product carbon footprint measures the total carbon emissions generated during the entire life cycle of a product, from production to disposal.

Ministry spokesperson Pei Xiaofei told a press conference on Wednesday that the plan contains an array of specific measures, including measures to rally efforts from various parties, promote the international alignment of related rules, strengthen the calculation of product carbon footprints and improve the protection of property rights.

Efforts will also be made to accelerate research related to carbon accounting methods for key products such as electricity, coal and fuel oil, which will provide a solid foundation for the calculation of the full-life-cycle carbon footprints of downstream products, Pei said.

Analysts believe effective carbon footprint management will facilitate China’s carbon reduction goals. The country has announced that it will peak carbon dioxide emissions by 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality by 2060.

(Cover image via CFP)

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency

14 people convicted of breaching national security law in Hong Kong

The High Court of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, October 30, 2023. /CFP

The High Court of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, October 30, 2023. /CFP

A Hong Kong court on Thursday ruled that 14 people were guilty of “conspiracy to subvert the state power” under the national security law in Hong Kong.

In 2021, 47 people, including anti-China disruptor Benny Tai Yiu-ting and former lawmakers Wu Chi-wai, Lam Cheuk-ting and Alvin Yeung, were arrested and charged with breaching the national security law in Hong Kong for organizing or participating in the so-called “primary election” in 2020.

Of the 47 people, 16 of them pleaded not guilty. The High Court of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region today ruled that 14 of the 16 were found guilty and two were acquitted.

The 14 people convicted were Gordon Ng, Tat Cheng, Clarisse Yeung, Michael Pang, Kalvin Ho, Helena Wong, Sze Tak-loy, Gwyneth Ho, Raymond Chan, Owen Chow, Lam Cheuk-ting, Leung Kwok-hung, Ricky Or and Winnie Yu.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency

Deepened Sino-Arab collaboration sets example for South-South cooperation

Editor’s note: Song Xueyin is deputy director of the Future Regional Development Laboratory, Zhejiang University. The article reflects the author’s opinions and not necessarily the views of CGTN. It has been translated from Chinese and edited for brevity and clarity.

Over the past two decades since the establishment of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum, China and Arab countries have implemented highly aligned development strategies, and their traditional friendship has withstood the test of time and grown even stronger. The two sides have complementary strengths in resources, markets, and industries. Their collaboration in fields such as energy, trade, and investment has been continuously enhanced, expanded, and upgraded. This has set a model for South-South cooperation and mutual benefits.

The opening ceremony of the 10th ministerial meeting of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum held in Beijing, May 30, 2024. /CFP

The opening ceremony of the 10th ministerial meeting of the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum held in Beijing, May 30, 2024. /CFP

Energy cooperation has been consolidated as the core to pioneer a new model of the Sino-Arab energy cooperation. China is the world’s second-largest economy and the largest importer of oil, while the Arab countries are among the most significant areas producing oil and gas globally. Enhancing energy cooperation and establishing a Sino-Arab partnership in energy supply and demand, form the cornerstone of Sino-Arab cooperation.

The Belt and Road Initiative, launched in 2013, marked a new journey of Sino-Arab energy cooperation in the new era. The introduction of “Eight Major Common Actions” for pragmatic collaboration at the first China-Arab States Summit in 2022 has further fueled this cooperation. 

In 2023, China imported 265 million tonnes of crude oil from Arab countries, accounting for 47 percent of China’s total crude oil imports. At the same time, Sino-Arab cooperation in new energy sectors such as photovoltaics, wind energy, and hydrogen energy has rapidly increased, significantly advancing the energy transition in Arab countries. Sino-Arab energy cooperation has thus entered a new phase of extensive, sustainable collaboration in such fields as carbon-based energy, renewable energy, and the peaceful utilization of nuclear energy.

The quality of infrastructure cooperation is enhanced to support new infrastructure development in Arab countries. The diversified development of the Arab economies has given rise to a substantial demand for high-level infrastructure, while China boasts robust technological and economic advantages in building infrastructure, creating vast opportunities for mutual complementary cooperation. Since the introduction of the Belt and Road Initiative, Chinese enterprises have signed engineering contracts worth $550 billion in Arab countries, covering various types of infrastructure, including logistics, railways, airports, ports, and energy.

Workers walked on the construction site of Egypt’s new administrative capital project, about 45 kilometers east of Cairo, Egypt, March 7, 2021. /CFP

Workers walked on the construction site of Egypt’s new administrative capital project, about 45 kilometers east of Cairo, Egypt, March 7, 2021. /CFP

In 2018, the Haramain High Speed Railway with a design speed of 360 km/h, which is the first of its kind constructed by Chinese enterprises overseas, commenced operation. It significantly reduced the commuting time between Mecca and Medina in Saudi Arabia by half and considerably enhanced transportation efficiency. In 2021, Power China won the contract for a major public utility project in Saudi Arabia, marking the first large-scale infrastructure complex project undertaken by a Chinese company in Saudi Arabia. In addition, new infrastructure collaborations in digital technology and new energy, among others, are becoming increasingly prominent, with a growing focus on digitalization, technical solutions, and clean energy projects.

Efforts are made to advance trade and investment integration, setting a new model for South-South cooperation. 

The Belt and Road Initiative is a crucial platform for Sino-Arab economic and trade cooperation. China has signed cooperation agreements for the Belt and Road Initiative with all 22 Arab countries and the League of Arab States. The China-Arab States Expo, held six times in a row, has evolved into an international exhibition integrating high-level dialogues, economic and trade promotion, and business negotiations.

Under the guidance of systematic cooperation frameworks and platforms such as the China-Arab States Cooperation Forum and the China-Arab States Expo, China has maintained its position as the largest trading partner of Arab countries. Two-way trade has surged from $36.7 billion in 2004 to $398 billion in 2023, with direct investment exceeding $30 billion. 

Economic and trade cooperation has gradually expanded beyond agriculture and energy trade into finance, investment, science and technology, and culture, evolving towards a more diverse, balanced, reciprocal, and high-quality partnership.