Under a pilot scheme, the first group of six provinces and cities sold 6.8 billion yuan in bonds
at commercial bank counters to individual buyers between March 22 and early April.
The coupon rates are between 3.01 percent and 3.33 percent, higher than treasury b
onds issued by the central government as well as bank deposits with the same maturity.
Gross local bond issuances hit 1.18 trillion yuan in the first qua
rter, compared with only 219.5 billion yuan in the same period last year.
The total quota for 2019 local government bond issuances is 3.08 trillion yuan, according to the Ministry of Finance.
“About 60 percent of the bonds were issued for ongoing construction, especially
for shantytown renovation projects, railways and roads,” said Hao Lei, head of the ministry’s Budget Department.
While debt financing continues to grow, the government is experiencing sharp declin
es in fiscal revenue growth, especially from tax and land sales, official data showed.
with the island by officially acknowledging that military personnel have been posted in the Taipei office of the American Institute in Taiwan since 2005.
US weapons manufacturer Raytheon was also granted a $9 million contract to upgrade Taiwan’s Patriot missile defense system.
Senior Colonel Liang Fang, a professor at PLA National Defense Universit
y, said the recent drill will test and enhance the PLA’s joint operating capabilities.
“It will increase the PLA’s ability to protect national sovereignty, and warn thos
e who are trying to undermine it to abandon their illusions,” she said. “Similar drills
will be more common in the future, with increasingly sophisticated equipment and training methods.”
Xiu Chunping, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social
Sciences’ Institute of Taiwan Studies, said the recent drill serves to warn the US and separati
He said he believes that with the efforts of the French people and supp
ort from the international community, Notre Dame will be repaired and regain its glory.
The fire broke out around 6:30 pm on the roof of the cathedral, which was covered in scaffoldi
ng. The blaze spread quickly and destroyed the wooden interior before causing the spire to collapse.
It took more than 400 firefighters over 12 ho
urs to put out the fire, and the main structure and two bell towers remained standing.
The cause of the fire is still unknown, though officials said it could be linked to renovation work. Investigators were eag
er to question the workmen in an effort to determine the cause of the fire, according to media reports.
Visiting the scene of the fire in Paris, Macron vowed an immediat
e fundraising effort to rebuild the landmark, calling for international contributions.
ling and wildlife protection knowledge among the public, and it welcomes public supervision or reports of smuggling.
As social networks and online stores have become increasingly important tools for wildlife s
mugglers, the administration has beefed up its anti-smuggling work online this year.
Customs officials are working on cases involving another 100 tons
of endangered wildlife and wildlife products, of which about 300 kilograms are tusks and ivory products.
Last year, the administration purchased advanced screening and detection equipment to improve th
e efficiency of its anti-smuggling work, according to Wang Wei, director of the administration’s ports supervision department.
People caught entering China with endangered wildlife or wildlife
products worth less than 200,000 yuan ($29,800) face up to five years in prison. If such contr
band goods are worth more than 1 million yuan, the penalty upon conviction is a minimum of 10 years in prison.
International Cooperation two years ago, more countries and inter
national organizations have joined in the construction of the Belt and Road.
So far, 125 countries and 29 international organiz
ations have signed BRI cooperation documents with China, according to Lu.
Among them are 16 Central and Eastern European countries and Gr
eece. Italy and Luxembourg signed cooperation agreements with China last month to join
tly build the Belt and Road. Jamaica also signed similar agreements on Thursday.
During Premier Li Keqiang’s European visit last week, both sides agreed to seek greate
r synergy between the BRI and the European Union’s strategy for connecting with Asia.
Yang Jiechi, director of the Office of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Comm
unist Party of China Central Committee, said last month that representatives of more than 100 coun
tries, including about 40 foreign leaders, have confirmed their attendance at the Beijing forum.
ber 2017 for graduate students. Many instructors at the school are working on AI-related res
earch so there will be no problem finding capable teachers for the new students, Lin said.
China’s booming AI industry has resulted in a growing demand for tal
ent. It is common for students in AI-related fields to have
already committed to companies before they even graduate and enter the job market, he said.
Master’s graduates majoring in AI can easily find jobs with salaries over 300,000 y
uan ($44,700) per year, and salaries for doctoral graduates are even higher, he said.
Chinese universities are catching up with their counterparts in the United
States in terms of basic research in AI and the numbe
r of published papers, yet they still lag behind in transforming research into application, he added.
sing funds for the sake of cost-cutting, Liu said, adding some staff made 80,000 yuan a
month in pilot areas for the new salary regime in southern China’s second and third-tier cities.
Earlier this year, rumors spread that China’s e-commerce giant would can
cel couriers’ basic salary and reduce welfare. The company confirmed the salary adjus
tment plan via its official Sina Weibo account on April 7, saying as the number of orders from individual clients incre
ases, the company is looking to adopt an incentive plan to reward outstanding employees.
JD will reduce its delivery staff members’ salaries by adopting a commis
sion-based payment scheme starting in June and low
er contributions to employees’ housing funds from 12 to 7 percent, Sina Finance reported.
An anonymous courier with JD Logistics said the task of getting more external delivery
orders under the new salary system would be hard to accomplish, and the new policy will reduce their salary, th
e report alleged, though the courier did not indicate an exact amount for the reduction.
rtunities provided by the initiative and the strategy, which for the EU me
mber states would also complement relevant EU initiatives, said the guidelines.
Announcing that 2020 will be the Year of China-CEEC Agricultural Diversity Cooperation, the p
articipants said they support expansion and deepening of cooperation in sustainable agriculture through
academic discussions, project docking, talent training and exhibitions as well as forums.
More Chinese people take trips during holidays compared to 10 years ago, according to official statistics and academic reports.
Both the number of domestic and outbound tourists have seen
a steady increase from 2008 to 2018, with the number of domestic tourists rocketing from
merely 1.71 billion in 2008 to a stunning 5.54 billion in 2018, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show.
Tourists in China have become more active in spending their public
holidays on traveling, according to a report from China Tourism Academy.
More than 70 British legislators have urged the government to make sure WikiLeaks found
er Julian Assange faces Swedish justice if prosecutors there reopen a rape allegation against him.
The lawmakers signed a letter late Friday urging Home Secretary Sa
jid Javid to “do everything you can to champion action that will ens
ure Julian Assange can be extradited to Sweden in the event Sweden makes an extradition request.”
Sweden suspended its investigation of serious sexual misconduct two years ago because Assange wa
s beyond their reach while he was living in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London with political asylum status.
He was arrested Thursday after Ecuador withdrew his asylum a
nd is now in British custody facing an extradition request
from the United States on charges of conspiring to break into a Pentagon computer.
He is in Belmarsh Prison in southeast London wait
ing to be sentenced for jumping bail in Britain, and plans to fight extradition to the US.
nt the album to the public,” Yang says.Yang was talking a couple of weeks before Record Store Day, an eve