Also, these new first-tier cities have preferential po

policies for residence permits and financial incentives to lure more talent.

For example, Zhenjiang in Jiangsu province, promised bonuses of 150,000 and 200,000 yuan for house purchases to gradua

tes with master’s and doctoral degrees, respectively, after they work in the city for three years.

Haikou, capital of Hainan province, is attracting college students with a monthly rent s

ubsidy of 1,500 yuan, with an 18,000-yuan allowance to graduates who decide to buy an apartment there.

Employment, especially some groups such as college gradu

ates and demobilized military staff, remains a priority to the government.

Premier Li Keqiang said at a teleconference on May 13 that employme

nt pressure will be felt this year by a larger number of college graduates. However, promotin

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Most Chinese State-owned enterprises are not relevant to tra

ade negotiations. Many are in non-tradable sectors such as property develop

ment, infrastructure, or concrete. Others are basically public utilities in telecoms or power.

Some Chinese car companies are State-owned, usually by provincial govern

ments, but the car business in China is very highly competitive and foreign brands are very successful.

In any case, the continuing growth of an already large private sector should alleviate foreign concerns

about competing with State-owned companies.

During the George W. Bush administration, the US imposed tarif

fs on Chinese steel, arguing that State-owned companies had an unfair advantage. But, US ste

el companies also face higher costs because of increased environmental protection. China’s current emphasis on bu

ilding an “ecological civilization” means that that kind of polluting heavy industry will be less viable.

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China’s consumer inflation quickens tosumer price ind

China’s consumer price index (CPI), the main gauge of inflation, gr

ew 2.5 percent year-on-year in April, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said Thursday.

The reading, in line with market expectations, accelerated from the 2.3 percent gain in March and 1.5 percent in Febru

ary. On a monthly basis, consumer prices edged up 0.1 percent, compared with the 0.4 percent drop seen a month earlier.

NBS official Dong Yaxiu attributed the rise to higher prices of vegetables, pork and fruit, which ros

e 17.4 percent, 14.4 percent and 11.9 percent, respectively, from the same period last year due to tighter supplies.

Food prices, which account for nearly one-third of weighting in China’s CPI, went up 6.1 percent year-on-year.

Meanwhile, China’s producer price index (PPI), which measures inflation at the factory gates, rose

0.9 percent year-on-year last month, up from the 0.4 percent gain in March that showed improving market demand.

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plemented more favorable visa policies for Chinese student

he said. The report also found that studying overseas is no longer limited to wealthy fam

ilies, and the number of students from middle-class families studying overseas keeps growing.

According to the survey on parents’ professional backgrounds, most parents whose children prefer studying overseas hold o

rdinary positions at work, accounting for 43 percent of the total, up 14 percentage points from 2015.

Parents who are middle-level managers accounted for 35 percent, and those who are high-level executives accounted for 22 per

cent, the report said. The number of students studying overseas for master’s degrees continues to increase, a

counting for 70 percent of the total, up from 57 percent in 2016. They are studying ov

erseas to obtain higher academic qualifications and be more competitive in the domestic job market, it said.

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The overall stability of China-US relations over the pa

four decades has been a blessing to not only our two countries, but the whole world,” said Cui Ti

ankai, Chinese ambassador to the US, in his remarks during the awards presentation.

“And the essence of the 40-year story is amity between the peoples, which lays the foundation for

and shapes the future of our relations,” he said, adding that the stories shared by peoples from the two cou

ntries through the My China Album series will always “be a source of inspiration and motivation for us”.

Hundreds of US citizens participated in the series from Feb 6 to April 19, sharing their personal stories about China thro

ugh photos and captions. Ten of the participants were recognized for their genuine and touching stories.

“I was so honored to win first place in this year’s My China Album,” said

Max Horne, an incoming Harvard University freshman who visited Yunnan province years a

go and studied the Naxi culture, a local ethnic group. “There’s endless culture for us to appreciate.”

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The glazed tiles on the top of the China Pavilion are i

 in fact a type of aluminum alloy that can be used to imitate the shape of traditional Chinese a

rchitecture at a low cost. It is an example of how modern technology is applied at the ex

hibition,” Li Liang, a designer of the pavilion, was quoted by Beijing Daily as saying.

By installing rainwater collection devices on the roofs and tanks beneath the pavili

on, a mini ecological circulation has been created by gathering rainwater to irrigate the terraced fields.

Shen Yanyan, who camea with her family from Jiangxi province for a visit, said that

although she didn’t know much about design, she felt the building was “very cool”.

“We saw its shiny roof upon entry to the park and we were immediately attracted,” said the 33-year-old. “The Chin

a Pavilion is not only beautiful outside, but also inside. My mother is very happy to see flowers from so many pro

vinces and regions of the country, and all are well-trimmed and placed in the pavilion’s exhibition halls.”

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Xi said China’s moves to boost opening-up follow from

 an independent choice based on the objective need of the country’s reform and development.

This is helpful in promoting high-quality growth, meeting the people’s need

s for a better life and promoting peace, stability and development of the world, he said.

China also hopes that other countries will create a good investment environment, treat Chinese enterpris

es, students and scholars equally and create a friendly environment for their normal international exchange activities, Xi said.

Xi pledged to take stronger measures to promote international cooperation in protecting intellectual pro

perty, which he said is not only crucial to protecting the legal rights of companies but also to promoting high-quality growth.

China will enhance policy coordination with the world’s major economic entities and j

ointly promote the robust, sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth of the global economy, he said

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Meanwhile, massive rescue operations are underway at

the explosion sites, the police said.Television footage showed ambulances r

ushing the injured to the Colombo National Hospital, the Batticaloa Hospital in

the east and the Negombo Hospital on the outskirts of the capital where the explosions took place.

There has been no claim of responsibility so far for the multiple blasts.

In just one church, St. Sebastian’s in Katuwapitiya, north o

f Colombo, more than 50 people had been killed, a police official told Reuters.

Media reported 25 people were also killed in an attack on a church in Batticaloa in Eastern Province.

Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe called a national security council meeting at his home for later in the day.

One of the explosions was at St Anthony’s Church in Kochcikade, Colombo.

St. Sebastian’s church posted pictures of destruction inside the church on its Fa

cebook page, showing blood on pews and the floor, and requested help from the public.

Out of Sri Lanka’s total population of around 22 million, 70 percent are Buddh

ist, 12.6 percent Hindu, 9.7 percent Muslim, and 7.6 percent Christian, according to the country’s 2012 cen

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Paris fire sends alarm on relics protectionhedral in Pa

An inferno that destroyed the spire and a large portion of the wooden roof structure of the 12th-century Notre Dame Cathedral in Pa

ris on Monday reinforced a cautionary message to Chinese authorities about the need to better protect vulnerable heritage sites.

The National Cultural Heritage Administration held a staff meeting on Tuesday night at wh

ich officials discussed the Paris fire and six major fires that have taken place at Chinese cultural heritage sites this year.

“The fire at Notre Dame in Paris rang the warning bell for us,” Song Xi

nchao, deputy director of the administration, said in an interview on Tuesday.

“The safety of cultural heritage sites is a red line that can never be crossed. It’s a global issue,” he said.

The six fires were in Sichuan, Fujian, Jiangxi, and Zhejiang provinces, officials said.

On Jan 6, a hall at Yunyan Temple in Jiangyou, Sichuan province, burned down. On

Feb 2, a wooden family temple from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) in Nanchang, Jiangxi, was destroyed by fire.

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Third, there is a serious focus on education overall. Ove

 the past five years, China has built or expanded 260,000 primary and secondary schools, added 1.7 million teache

rs and increased the student body by 27.3 million. The Ministry of Education committed more resources last y

ear to poverty-stricken areas to ensure every child is able to attend school by 2020.

Beyond easing dire poverty in rural areas, China has an ongoing pa

rallel policy to build a moderately prosperous society by 2020, a crucial aspect of which is set

ting up a basic social security system. This has been done progressively since the 1980s.

China also has had several social insurance programs since the 1990s, covering unemployment, employment injury, mat

ernity, medical care and pension. The country subsequently embarked on a new and successful phase of so

cial security development to provide healthcare benefits to rural and nonworking urban residents.

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