At a meeting held in Nanchang, capital of Jiangxi, on

n Tuesday afternoon, Xi called for efforts to make new advances in the development of the countr

y’s central region. Xi presided over the meeting, at which he was briefed by the Party secretaries of Shanxi, Anhui, Jiangxi, He

nan, Hubei and Hunan provinces, as well as He Lifeng, head of the National Development and Reform Commission.

Promoting the rise of the central region is an important strategic decis

ion made by the CPC Central Committee, Xi said, adding that it has great significance in ac

hieving the goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.

Xi said that although China is still in an important period of strategic opp

ortunity for its development, the country faces an increasingly complicated international situation.

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the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction and the Alliance of

ernational Science Organizations, a group created to connect the scientific communities of BRI participants.

Bai Chunli, president of the academy, said in the conference’s opening ceremony on Saturday that areas along the Silk Road are

prone to various natural disasters that have resulted in massive loss of life and economic damage.

“As a result, it is paramount to use new technologies and international cooperation to jointly tackle these nat

ural disaster risks, protect ecological security and achieve sustainable development,” Bai said.

The academy will continue to collaborate with foreign partners to create new platfor

ms and mechanisms to improve disaster management and ecological protection, he added.

Mami Mizutori, head of the UN Office for Disaste

r Risk Reduction, said in a video speech that the scale and reach of the world’s largest infrastructure initiative will impact billi

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The aircraft, a Sukhoi Superjet 100 from Aeroflot Russ

sian Airlines, was bound from Moscow for Murmansk in Russia’s far north.

It made an emergency landing at the airport shortly after takeoff with 73 passengers and five crew members aboard.

The aircraft circled before making a hard landing back at the airport after the crew issued a mayday alert.

As seen in CCTV footage, the plane touched down hard and skidded along the runway, spewing out plumes of black smok

e and nearly completely afire. The plane’s undercarriage collapsed as it slowed to a halt on the tarmac.

Yelena Markovskaya, spokeswoman for the Moscow interregional tr

ansport investigation department of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Fed

eration, said on Monday that 37 people survived, including four crew members.

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Services are growing rapidly. The value-added of th

 tertiary sector, which is mainly services, grew from 56.7 to 57.3 percent of GDP from the same period last year. The

Index of Services Production increased 7.4 percent year-on-year, higher than the growth rate of overall GDP.

Overall retail sales of consumer goods also grew at 8.3 percent. Sales of upgraded consumer goods witnessed fast gro

wth, with the highest rates concentrated in upgraded products such as cosmetics, phones and computers.

And, high-tech services grew at an astonishing rate of 21.2 percent. In prepa

ring for consumer 5G telecoms next year, the output of mobile communications base stations grew 153.7 percent.

The data also show strong movement toward the government’s goal

of creating an ecological civilization. New energy automobiles and solar cells grew by 48.2 percen

t and 18.2 percent, respectively. Sales of urban rail vehicles grew by 54.1 percent, showing the

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China to support 5,000 people for BRI innovation excha

China will support 5,000 people from innovation sector in Belt and Road countries i

n conducting exchanges, training programs and joint researches in the next five years.

Sustainable development under BRI stressed

China will work with other parties to promote a coalition of sustainab

le cities and an international coalition for green development under the Belt and Road Initiative.

China to invite 10,000 representatives of political parties, think tanks, NGOs from B&R countries

A total of 10,000 representatives of political parties, think ta

nks and non-governmental organizations from count

ries participating in the Belt and Road Initiative will be invited to China for exchanges in the next five years.

China to allow foreign businesses in more sectors with controlling or full stake

China will allow foreign investors to operate businesses in more sec

tors with controlling or full stake. China will roll out a new batch of pilot free trade zones.

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As a prominent expert on China-US studies for decade

 Zhu also was twice denied single-entry visas to the US.

“This shows how the US is trying to block normal social exchanges bet

ween the two countries, an important channel for mutual understanding and trust,” Zhu said.

Besides scholars in social sciences, the US also began last year to make it harder for Chinese graduate students to get visas if they stud

y in “sensitive research fields”. It warned biomedical researchers at US universities to beware of “Chinese spies

trying to steal information from their laboratories”, according to The New York Times report.

Jon Taylor, a professor of political science of the University o

f St. Thomas in Houston, said the decision is “both absurd and exceedingly shortsighted”.

“These scholars and researchers are social scientists with a long history of interactin

g with their American counterparts as well policymakers in both countries,” he said.

“They are scholars teaching and researching what I teach and research. What are they going to steal?”

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From January to March, government tax income inc

creased by 5.4 percent year-on-year, 11.9 percentage points lower than that in the first quarter 2018.

Individual income tax decreased by 29.7 percent, the largest drop among three major tax item

s. Value-added tax growth has already slowed to 10.7 percent, down from 20.1 percent a year earlier.

Local government income from land sales fell 9.5 percent in the first three months, the Ministry of Finance said.

As the central bank has taken a pause in monetary easing, fiscal policy should remain pro

active to stabilize economic growth and ensure the recent rebound is not just a seasonal fluke, said economists.

Xu Xianchun, a former deputy director at the National Bureau of Statist

ics, said that fiscal policy should be implemented “with proper intensity and at the right time”, t

o prevent large fluctuations in the investment growth rate and negative impact on economic stability.

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Most of the ivory was hidden in an abandoned factory

by the smugglers, Sun said. Busts were made in several locations, which were not disclosed. The case is still under investigation.

Since early this year, 182 smuggling cases involving endangered species have been investigated, the administration said on Monday.

More than 500 tons of endangered animals and animal products were seized, 8.48 t

ons of which was ivory tusks or products made of ivory. In those cases, 171 suspects were detained.

The Chinese government suspended imports of ivory and all ivor

y products in 2015 and ended commercial processing and sale of ivory at the end of 2017.

The ban has had significant positive effects, with fewer people purchasing ivory, according to a report j

ointly released last year by the World Wildlife Fund and TRAFFIC, an NGO that tracks the global trade in wild animals.

“We will strengthen our anti-smuggling efforts, continuing to work with international organizations and depart

ments and allowing no tolerance of those illegal activities,” said Hu Wei, deputy director of the administration.

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Plenkovic said CEE countries’ exports to China rose f

 fivefold in the past few years, which helps reduce trade disparities with developed

economies. He called on all CEE nations to take the opportunity to deepen economic and trade cooperation with China.

Zhong Shan, minister of commerce, said over 1,000 people participated, the most since the event started nine yea

rs ago. “It demonstrates the increasing confidence in the forum and cooperation with China at large,” he said.

In recent years, China’s trade with CEE nations has seen rapid growth. According to the Ministry

of Commerce, China’s imports from the countries have risen by 24.6 percent to $23 billion. Chinese compan

ies have invested over $10 billion in CEE nations, which in turn have injected more than $1.5 billion into China,

focusing on machinery, auto components, the chemical industry, financing and environmental protection.

After the forum, Li and Plenkovic attended an exhibition of Chin

a-CEEC education cooperation and a dialogue mechanism to boost cooperation among small an

d medium-sized enterprises from both sides. Before leaving for Beijing, Li also had separate

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Guangzhou introduces 3D printing to restore remain

A special 3D printer worked next to a display cabinet filled with a variety of imitations of bo

dy parts at a funeral parlour in Guangzhou, capital of southern China’s Guangdong province.

The city’s funeral service center is trying to introduce the new technology to help restore remains damaged in accidents.

“We want the deceased to leave with dignity,” said Yu Jiaqi (pseudonym), an embalming expert at the funeral parlor.

Previously, the restoration was carried out manually, using plasticine, plaster and clay. A facial repair usually took 15 to 30 days.

Yu said not only the long wait but the sometimes barely satisfactory restoration prolonged the pain for family and loved ones.

“The materials can easily deform. We have been looking for better ways to restore the original form of the deceased,” she said.

Li Zhijian, deputy head of the funeral service center, said 3D printing only takes 10 da

ys for a much more lifelike and accurate face, and the texture is stronger and feels more like real skin.

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