February28 , 2024
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[:ka]First session spokesman calls for reforms to curb China’s air pollution[:en]First session spokesman calls for reforms to curb China’s air pollution[:]

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Wang Guoqing, spokesman for the first session of the 13th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, at a news conference in Beijing, March 2, 2018. [Photo/Xinhua]

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The spokesman for the national political advisory body on Friday called for the reform of China’s structures of industry, energy consumption, and transportation to curb air pollution as the country shifts to high-quality growth.

“Development with high emissions and pollution affects not only the long-term economic development but also people’s health. That is not the development we want,” Wang Guoqing, spokesman for the first session of 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, said at a news conference.

“Lucid waters and lush mountains are as valuable as gold and silver,” said Wang, emphasizing air pollution control doesn’t conflict with the effort of developing the economy and improving people’s lives.

Though achievement has been made in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region in air pollution control and people witnessed more blue skies in the capital last year, Wang said the achievement is made based on “heavy prices” and thanks to favorable meteorological conditions for the dispersal of pollutants.

“When the meteorological conditions were not favorable several days ago, we all felt the air quality turn bad again,” said Wang, referring to heavy smog in Beijing on Wednesday, when the capital issued a yellow alert, the third highest of a four-tier alert system.

The root reason for air pollution lies in the inefficient development mode and less environmentally friendly lifestyles.

“These problems have not been solved completely,” he said.

Wang also called on people to lead a low-carbon life. Air pollution control is a complicated project that takes a long time, but as long as all people attach importance to it with relentless actions to move the project forward, “we are full of confidence in winning the campaign of protecting the blue skies,” he said.

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The spokesman for the national political advisory body on Friday called for the reform of China’s structures of industry, energy consumption, and transportation to curb air pollution as the country shifts to high-quality growth.

“Development with high emissions and pollution affects not only the long-term economic development but also people’s health. That is not the development we want,” Wang Guoqing, spokesman for the first session of 13th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, said at a news conference.

“Lucid waters and lush mountains are as valuable as gold and silver,” said Wang, emphasizing air pollution control doesn’t conflict with the effort of developing the economy and improving people’s lives.

Though achievement has been made in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei region in air pollution control and people witnessed more blue skies in the capital last year, Wang said the achievement is made based on “heavy prices” and thanks to favorable meteorological conditions for the dispersal of pollutants.

“When the meteorological conditions were not favorable several days ago, we all felt the air quality turn bad again,” said Wang, referring to heavy smog in Beijing on Wednesday, when the capital issued a yellow alert, the third highest of a four-tier alert system.

The root reason for air pollution lies in the inefficient development mode and less environmentally friendly lifestyles.

“These problems have not been solved completely,” he said.

Wang also called on people to lead a low-carbon life. Air pollution control is a complicated project that takes a long time, but as long as all people attach importance to it with relentless actions to move the project forward, “we are full of confidence in winning the campaign of protecting the blue skies,” he said.

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[:en]Stable growth pursued in 2018[:]

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President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, walks into the conference hall during the first session of the 13th National People's Congress, which opened at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on Monday. [Photo by Xu Jingxing/China Daily]

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GDP target set at 6.5 percent as opening-up, quality and efficiency are emphasized, Li says in annual Government Work Report

China will continue to pursue stable economic growth this year, setting its GDP growth target at around 6.5 percent, and further open up its economy to foreign investors, Premier Li Keqiang said on Monday morning while delivering the annual Government Work Report.

The country opposes protectionism and supports the settlement of trade disputes through negotiation, Li told the first session of the 13th National People’s Congress.

The growth target is unchanged from last years despite China’s achievement of a higher-than-expected 6.9 percent GDP growth in 2017, the first acceleration in seven years. This year’s report does not contain wording similar to last year’s, which said that “a higher growth rate will be pursued if possible in practice”.

“The Chinese economy is expected to be quite stable this year and the priority will be put on improving growth quality and efficiency,” Liu Shijin, a Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference National Committee member, told reporters.

Li said that the country will forcefully pursue high-quality development, a stance that was put forward by Xi Jinping, general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, at the 19th National Congress of the Party.

Li also said China will continue to carry out the three critical battles, namely forestalling and defusing major risks, targeting poverty alleviation and controlling pollution.

“The government is trying to tackle environmental protection, high housing prices, and medical reform as well as educational reform. If the government can tackle these issues, that means more people would be able to enjoy the fruit of economic development,” Henry Gao, associate professor at the School of Law at Singapore Management University, was quoted by Channel NewsAsia as saying.

Li vowed, “Reform will be further deepened, opening-up will be further expanded.”

China will fully open up its general manufacturing sectors to foreign investors, expand opening-up in such sectors as telecommunications, health, education, elderly care and new energy vehicles, and open up the bank card settlement market in an orderly manner, he ensured.

China will also ease entry into such fields as insurance, banking, securities, fund management and futures and financial asset management, and will further simplify procedures for doing business for foreign businesses, the premier added. The foreign investment approval system will give way to negative list management, he said.

The negative list defines which fields are inaccessible for foreign investors, while others are presumed to be open. The list is meant to facilitate foreign investment as the country’s policies become more predictable.

“Further opening up China’s economy for the foreign investment-including establishment of a nationwide negative list-will be key for productivity increases in the economy,” said Bert Hofman, the World Bank’s country director for China. “It will also contribute to maintaining an open international economic system, which remains key for China’s future and healthy development of the world economy.”

Li also said China will take forceful measures to forestall financial risks. It will improve supervision over shadow banking, internet finance, and financial holding companies as well as be improving financial regulation and strengthening local government debt management.

The Government Work Report also reviewed China’s reform and development over the past five years.

Li said, “Over the past five years, we have encountered a great many problems and challenges. … The achievements we made … we owe to the strong leadership of the Party Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core, the sound guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, and to the concerted efforts of the Party, the military, and the people of all our nation’s ethnic groups.”

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[:en]EXPREAD Platform aims to reshape the conventional infrastructure for Crypto Currency Trading[:]

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EXPREAD platform (expread.io), incorporating Blockchain-based solutions, proposes to completely change the way cryptocurrency exchanges are opened and operated, making it easy for new crypto currency exchanges to be established as well as allows already operating ones that are facing liquidity and security problems to join the platform. The start-up has already generated much buzz among the cryptocurrency investors in Asia. The team has been actively engaged in presenting their project to the broader audience of Blockchain technology enthusiasts. Recent engagements include Blockchain Summit in Macau, China and Blockchain Symposium in Korea. Next stop for the team is Chicago, where on 9th of February Expread team will be presenting their innovative model along with already well-established projects on the market.

The CEO of Expread platform, Leo Liu explains, “Expread platform is built on a proposition of shared economy, where multiple exchanges aggregate their liquidity, technology costs and unique expertise to achieve synergy value from network effect. We have an experienced team with solid technical, financial and legal background. The concept of Expread has been initiated in July 2016. The technical and governance features of our platform are designed in a way to incorporate and adapt to the rapidly growing needs of the crypto market.”

Tamar Menteshashvili, the co-founder of Expread, also added, “Currently the lack of liquidity is one of the major problems underpinning the crypto-exchange market. The segregation of the liquidity between different exchanges, inefficiency of the exchange interaction protocols and lack of the liquidity aggregators creates systemic liquidity challenge in the whole crypto industry hampering its fast and sustainable development. Expread aims to tackle this problem by introducing a new paradigm of operating exchanges.”

It seems that the innovative model of Expread Platform challenges the conventional practices in the market. The introduced model of trading can become a strong alternative to the current exchanges with the highest volumes of trading. The combination of shared economy model with new governance mechanisms, collective control of liquidity pools, backward auditability, cross settlement of book orders enlarges the potential magnitude of the trading in though the platform.

We have asked the Expread team to keep us updated about the new achievements and we are looking forward to tell our readers more details on this project in the upcoming weeks. Before that you can join Expread Global Community telegram group and directly interact with the team members. The whitepaper is also available on their official webpage.

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[:en]New laurel processing factory opens in western Georgia[:]

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A brand-new laurel processing factory has opened in Georgia’s western region of Imereli.

The Georgian Laurel factory has been built within the framework of the United Agro Project. A total of $597,482 has been invested in the factory including $239,000 of state co-financing.

53 people are employed in the new factory, and the laurel leaves will be sold on foreign markets. Photo by APMA

Eight agricultural programs were united under United Agro Project and aimed to make it easier for farmers to identify what programs they could best benefit from. These are:

  • Plant the Future
  • Preferential Agro Credit Project
  • Co-financing of Agro Processing and Storage Enterprises
  • Georgian Tea Plantation Rehabilitation Program
  • Agro Insurance
  • Small Farmers Spring Works Support Programme
  • Program of Agro -production Promotion
  • Seasonal Projects

The new factory is located in Vani in Imereti region produces 236 tons of local laurel leafs per year.

165 new and 750 old factories have been financed within United Agro Project since 2013. In total, 8 new factories have been opened in Imereti region and 75 – expanded.

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[:en]Major topics at 4th World Internet Conference[:]

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Major topics at 4th World Internet Conference

The annual World Internet Conference will be held from Dec 3 to 5 in the river town of Wuzhen, East China’s Zhejiang province.

With a theme of “Developing Digital Economy for Openness and Shared Benefits – Building a Community of Common Future in Cyberspace”, the conference will welcome 1,500 guests from five continents, including heads of international organizations, internet business leaders, internet celebrities, experts and scholars.

This year’s conference will further facilitate discussion and dialogues on the digital economy, cutting-edge technologies, internet and society, cyberspace governance, and exchanges and cooperation in 21 sessions.

Let’s take a closer look at the topics to be covered.

World-leading internet scientific and technological achievements

Major topics at 4th World Internet Conference

 Global digital economy: In-depth cooperation for mutual benefits
Major topics at 4th World Internet Conference

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[:en]Guinness Book of Records declares Georgian wine as world’s oldest wine[:]

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After the recently announced findings of international group of scientists on archaeological evidence discovered near Tbilisi, Georgian wine was included in the Guinness Book of World Records as the oldest wine.

“Chemical evidence of wine, dating back to 6000 BC, was obtained from residues of ancient pottery excavated in the archeological sites in Georgia”, – the Guinness World Records webpage reads, – “Prior to this discovery, the oldest chemically identified wine from Hajji Firuz Tepe (Iran) dated back to about 5400–5000 BC. These new findings are from about 600–1,000 years earlier, and indicate that wine-making and possibly viticulture were already in place about 8,000 years ago”.

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As a reminder, researchers have recently found wine residue on pottery shards at two Georgian sites dating back to 6,000 BC. The pottery jars were discovered in two Neolithic villages, called Gadachrili Gora and Shulaveris Gora, about 50km south of Georgia’s capital Tbilisi. The residues were identified as wine since they contained tartaric acid, which only occurs in large amounts in the Eurasian grape in the Middle East and the wine made from it. The detection of other organic acids (malic, citric and succinic), also found in the Eurasian grape, provided confirmatory evidence.

Leading international publications such as BBC, Time, The Guardian and New York Times have reported about this historic discovery which once again proves that Georgia is a real cradle of wine.

Read original page at Guinness Book here.

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[:en]Jessica Lam’s Tips for Entrepreneurs[:]

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 Tbilisi: For the first time Georgia hosted the Global Business Forum. The event was organized by “Union of Business Ladies” and was attended by representatives of governmental, non-governmental and private sectors. The delegates of 17 countries, including Great Britain, Kazakhstan, Greece, India, Czech Republic, United Nations, Turkey, China and the United States attended the forum. The main goal of the forum was to promote the activities of women entrepreneurs and actively engage in the economy of their country. Speakers shared their experience to the guests. They covered topics such as the resource and potential of Georgian trade market, the latest entrepreneurial trends, the strengthening of the country’s economy and the role of women in business. The second part of the forum was master classes. The final part of the forum was Q&A part.

One of the spokespersons from China, Jessica Lam said in an interview with Sinomedia:

 I think it is really important to have this forum, as a women entrepreneur the more support you can get from both government and from other business woman is very important to entrepreneurship.

 This forum has  a very good model its share, connect and grow I believe and that is actually same mentality that I have when It comes to starting a company, because without your networks, without kind of having shared understanding of where you want to be and  through your 5 years company  you can not make a successful company, you need to have that vision and you need to be able communicate that. My key of success is actually perseverance and right support because there obviously will be days where you feel like “Oh Yes I can do that!” and there is going to be days where you are like “oh, no, what am I doing!” and that is when you need to have that support and that is what I think this conference is able to do, to connect these women who are able to  support each other  and to cheer each other on to greater heights. “ – Jessica Lam spoke about her business in the interview and gave advice to the Start-uppers.

Co-Founder of Kaiterra, She Loves Tech Global Ambassador, recognized on the Forbes “30 Under 30 Asia 2017 list”; Currently lives in Beijing, China. Born and raised in Vancouver, Canada, Jessica moved to Beijing in 2014 and co-founded Kaiterra: a startup focused on monitoring and mapping the world’s air. In the past two years, Kaiterra has experienced over 500% year-on-year growth and its Laser Egg smart air quality monitor is for sale in all the Apple Stores across China.

“China is fantastic because of not only for its population, but for the youth, the young people in China are very, very motivated to get more stuff done and to do more and so I think that it is one of the main reasons why I love living there.”

 “Air quality is a major reason our business is related to air quality monitoring and mapping and giving China and India being both huge population  and also having some issues with air quality, we thought that it was a great place to start. If you are interested in China, learn Chinese it hands down the most important  thing that I have had to adapt  to. There are many, many foreigners  starting businesses in China and I hope  that Language  is a barrier, just go get yourself familiar with the community,  it is very open, there are a lot of people who are interested in bringing  business to China, so don’t hesitate, just jump in.”

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[:en]Georgian Zurab Pololikashvili confirmed UNWTO Secretary General[:]

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[ფოტო/საგარეო საქმეთა სამინისტრო]

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Georgian Zurab Pololikashvili was confirmed as the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Secretary General for 2018-2021 at the General Assembly today.

Zurab Pololikashvili was elected by the UNWTO General Assembly within its 22nd session taking place in Chengdu, China, from September 12 to September 15.

After being elected, Pololikashvili said this was a vote of friendship, and thanked the former Secretary General Taleb Rifai for his work and China for being a gracious host.

This is the first time ever that a Georgian candidate has been selected to such a high-ranking post at the international organisation, announced Georgia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Up to now Pololikashvili served as Resident Representative of Georgia at the UNWTO and as the Ambassador of Georgia to Spain.

The Georgian delegation headed by Georgia’s Vice-Premier and Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze attended the procedure while participating at the UNWTO’s General Assembly.

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[:ka]Five-day war that Shook the World[:en]Five-day War that Shook the World – 08.08.08[:]

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DIMITAR DILKOFF/AFP

[:ka]9 years ago, on the night of 7th to the 8th August 2008, Russian military supported South Ossetia-separatists to begin attacking Georgian peacekeepers. In response, Georgian government sent troops into South Ossetia. Russia responded by moving her troops to the border, flying aircraft over Georgia, and beginning air strikes in South Ossetia. Georgia was involved in the full-scale war with Russia. During the five-day conflict, Georgia showed that she has a very strong and well-prepared military. The presidents of Georgia and Russia both signed a cease fire agreement that was brokered by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Although, as part of the cease fire agreement, on 22 August Russia started withdrawing its troop from Georgia, Russian forces are not all fully withdrawn from Georgia yet. Until now Russian creeping occupation continues in Georgia. On 26th August 2008, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed an order recognizing the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Currently, they are officially part of Georgia but have separate, unrecognized, so-called governments strongly supported by Russia. Only a handful of other states recognize these parts of Georgia as independent states. The People’s Republic of China is among those countries that do not recognize Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states.

China was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of Georgia. China and Georgia established diplomatic relations in 1992. Since the establishment of the diplomatic relations between the two countries, Sino-Georgian bilateral relations are at their peak over last years. On 13 May 2017 Georgia and China signed a free trade agreement as China admits Georgia’s potential key role in the new Silk Road project. According to the ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, the free trade agreement will contribute to the further development of trade relations, based on the principles of mutual benefit, and will bring cooperation between Georgia and China to a higher level. These bilateral relations with China, as well as with other countries, is significant for Georgia particularly since 2008 as it guarantees Georgia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and International security.[:en]

9 years ago, on the night of 7th to the 8th August 2008, Russian military supported South Ossetia-separatists to begin attacking Georgian peacekeepers. In response, Georgian government sent troops into South Ossetia. Russia responded by moving her troops to the border, flying aircraft over Georgia, and beginning air strikes in South Ossetia. Georgia was involved in the full-scale war with Russia. During the five-day conflict, Georgia showed that she has a very strong and well-prepared military. The presidents of Georgia and Russia both signed a cease fire agreement that was brokered by French President Nicolas Sarkozy. Although, as part of the cease fire agreement, on 22 August Russia started withdrawing her troop from Georgia, Russian forces are not all fully withdrawn from Georgia yet. Until now Russian creeping occupation continues in Georgia. On 26th August 2008, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev signed an order recognizing the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. Currently, they are officially part of Georgia but have separate, unrecognized, so-called governments strongly supported by Russia. Only a handful of other states recognize these parts of Georgia as independent states. The People’s Republic of China is among those countries that do not recognize Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states.

China was one of the first countries to recognize the independence of Georgia. China and Georgia established diplomatic relations in 1992. Since the establishment of the diplomatic relations between the two countries, Sino-Georgian bilateral relations are at their peak over last years. On 13 May 2017 Georgia and China signed a free trade agreement as China admits Georgia’s potential key role in the new Silk Road project. According to the ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia, the free trade agreement will contribute to the further development of trade relations, based on the principles of mutual benefit, and will bring cooperation between Georgia and China to a higher level. These bilateral relations with China, as well as with other countries, is significant for Georgia particularly since 2008 as it guarantees Georgia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and International security.

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[:en]Interview with SINOMEDIA: The Chinese dean of Confucius Institute at Free University of Tbilisi, Che Rushan[:]

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Interview/SINOMEDIA:

Guest: The Chinese dean of Confucius Institute at Free University of Tbilisi, Che Rushan

Please Introduce yourself… 

– I’m a professor from Lanzhou University,have been  working in Tbilisi for two years as the Chinese dean of the Confucius Institutes at Free University of Tbilisi.

Your Hometown…

– I was born in Ningxia Hui autonomous region which is in the west of China. Ningxia is also an important place in Chinese history. Here had been established the Western Xia Dynasty. My hometown is a plain of the Yellow River which is called the Mother River in China. There is an old saying that The Yellow River Nurtured Ningxia with vitality.

Your Dream…

– I studied English linguistics for bachelor degree,Pedagogy for master degree and PhD. As a Professor and the Director of Confucius Institute,my dream is to communicate with people from around the world,share the thoughts of Chinese people. I also dream about world peace and harmony. That is also the goal and responsibility of Confucius Institute.

Impression of Georgia…

– Georgia is full of beautiful natural scenery with a long cultural history. People are friendly and hospitable, respect the traditions and have a lot in common with Chinese People. Men are gentle and women are pretty. It is a great place to live with high level of civilization. In addition, Georgians pay attention to family values.

Favorite Georgian words…

– My Favorite Georgian word is “Ho” which means “Yes”,it’s a bit like Chinese “Hao”(Good), another favorite word in Georgian is “Gamarjoba” or “Gaumarjos”, which is used during Greeting and toasts. The longest Georgian word I remember is “Tavisuflebis Moedani” (“Liberty Square”) in Georgian. I feel great in Georgia.

 

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