Der wöchentliche Presserückblick der Schweizer Botschaft in der VR China
The Weekly Press Review of the Swiss Embassy in the People's Republic of China
La revue de presse hebdomadaire de l'Ambassade de Suisse en RP de Chine
  30.08-03.09.2004, No. 32  
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Foreign Policy

Wen: More aid to developing countries
2004-09-03 China Daily
China is moving to build more facilities in developing countries and send more medical teams there in coming years. China will also provide more emergency aid to developing countries, train more professionals, encourage more firms to invest in developing countries and try to solve the trade imbalance that some developing countries face. "We must uphold the principles of mutual respect, treating each other equally, integrating good political relations with economic co-operation, mutual benefit, common development, and seeking concrete results in economic co-operation when advancing relations with the vast majority of the developing countries," said Premier Wen Jiabao on Tuesday when he met with participants at the conference. China started to provide assistance to developing countries in the 1950s. ( )

China Termin für die nächsten 4. Sechser-Gesprächsrunde
2004-09-01 Xinhua Wang (Übersetzung)
Noch vor Ende September will China die nächste 4. Runde der Sechser-Gespräche zusammenkommen. Chinas Ziel sei in Kooperation mit den fünf anderen Partners eine atomwaffenfreie koreanische Halbinsel zu erreichen. ( ) Dabei habe China immer mit allen Beteiligten enge Kontakte und Verbindungen gepflegt und leiste seinen aktiven Beitrag.


Domestic Policy

China beleidigt über antichinesische Aktionen einzelner "Menschenrechtler"
2004-09-03 Xinhua Wang (Übersetzung)
Einzelne "Menschenrechtler" opponieren gegen Chinas Austragungsrechte der Olympischen Spiele 2008 in Beijing, betonte der Pressesprecher des Aussenministeriums. In Beijing hatten zwei Ausländer vor dem Eingang eines Parks ein Banner mit dem Slogan "Freiheit für Tibet" enthüllt. Auch sprachen diese Elemente sich gegen die Austragung der Olympiade 2008 in Beijing aus. China verbiete sich solche Aktionen. Ausländer sind in China willkommen, doch müssten diese die Gesetze und Vorschriften einhalten. Hierzu gehört auch, dass man die staatliche Einheit und territoriale Integrität Chinas respektiert.

Welfare system covers rural workers
2004-09-02 Xinhua News
Shanghai's social security system may cover more than half a million workers in rural areas by the end of the year, China Daily reported Thursday. To date, more than 400,000 workers in Shanghai's rural areas are covered. According to the officials of the Shanghai Municipal Labour and Social Security Bureau, more than 90 per cent of the 400,000 workers are farmers-turned workers whose land was requisitioned in the process of urbanization. However, these former farmers were not covered by Shanghai's social security system until last October. The officials also believe solving their welfare issues is crucial to the stability of society. Meanwhile, the municipality is working to include all the farmers in the overall social security and healthcare systems. At present, there are more than 2.9 million farmers in the rural areas of Shanghai, the majority of them are already in the healthcare system. The expense for each farmer to enter the system is shared between the farmer himself or herself, the administration of the town he or she lives and the Shanghai Municipality. Only 100,000 of them did not enter the system due to poverty, differences between their registered addresses and actual ones, or other reasons. ( )

Experts predict: China's 10 major risk factors before 2010
2004-09-02 People's Daily
One must think of danger in time of peace. At the time when the "11th Five-Year Plan" is in the making, the topic group of the National Development and Reform Commission conducted an survey among 98 well-known Chinese and foreign experts from various ministries and commissions under the State Council, major scientific institutes and academies, main people's organizations as well as foreign universities and international agencies stationed in China. ( )
Question of Employment
Question of Farmers, Countryside and Agriculture Over the past dozen years or so, although China's national economy has grown at a rate well over 7 percent, agriculture was almost an unprofitable sector, and farmers' income was basically stagnant. ( )
Question of Finance China's savings ratio is high and its capital formation is smooth, but its capital market and financial system have long been imperfect. ( )
Poor-Rich Gap The gap between the poor and the rich in China has gone beyond the international warning "red line", its direct result will be that social security, especially public security, will be greatly harmed, this problem must have our high attention.
Question of Ecology and Resources China is faced with a serious environmental problem, water and air pollution, soil erosion as well as the shortage of water resources have gravely affected people's health and hindered economic growth.
Taiwan Issue Since the mid-1990s, the Taiwan issue has been developing in a direction we don't want to see. Future development trend of the Taiwan question depends on Taiwan's popular will, how to win the Island's popular feeling will be key to the central government's policy toward Taiwan.
Question of Globalization ( ) Factors really affecting China's economic and social sustainable development in the future will perhaps remain a structural problem within China's economy and society: for example, the irrational structure of demand, the exacerbated contradiction of the industrial structure as well as the change and disharmony between the selling price of capital goods and the consumer price of residents, etc. ( )
Question of Confidence and Creditability The questions of creditability and confidence is linked together with the issue of tackling crisis, people's loss of confidence and lack of creditability is closely associated with the graft and corruption of certain government officials and the perversion of social mores. The question of trustworthiness not only concerns morality, it is also a systemic issue. ( )
Question of Aids and Public Hygiene In the opinion of UN experts, unless China adopts effective measures, otherwise, the number of Chinese infected by aids virus will far surpass the estimated 10 million and may reach as high as 30 million, in that case, China will become a country with the most aids virus infected people in the world. This is by no means an alarmist talk. Besides aids, the problem of hygiene brought to light by the crisis of SARS last year will hamper China's economic development for a long period of time to come.

Das Erdgas werde fliessen
2004-09-02 Guangming Wang (Übersetzung)
Die neue Erdgas-Pipeline verläuft von West- nach Ostchina und soll die Shanghai Region mit dringend benötigten Energieressourcen beliefern. ( ) Die Erdgasversorgungsstation in Lunnan im Autonomen Gebiet Xinjiang hat am Mittwoch begonnen, Erdgas aufzunehmen. ( ) Insgesamt werden 14 Erdgasfelder mit einem Vorrat von knapp 658 Mia Kubikmetern angebort, was für mehr als 30 Jahre eine konstante Erdgasversorgung gewährleisten soll. ( )

China to speed up nuclear power construction
2004-09-01 Xinhua News
China will greatly speed up its nuclear power construction in the next 15 years to achieve a total nuclear power capacity of 36 million kilowatts by 2020, almost four times the current one, a senior Chinese atomic energy official said here Wednesday. ( ) Although the concrete nuclear power development program is being discussed, the Chinese government has decided to make nuclear power a major part of its power industry. Currently China has nine generating units in operation, with a total installed capacity of 7.01 million kw. The total capacity is expected to reach 9.13 million kw by 2005 when Tianwan Nuclear Power Plant goes into operation in Jiangsu. ( ) The new nuclear power plants will sharply reduce the use of 120million tons of raw coal, which will ease the pressure on fuel transportation and environmental protection.

Xinjiang urged to maintain stability
2004-08-31 Xinhua News
Senior Party official Luo Gan has urged the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region in northwest China to keep economic development and unite the local people for maintaining social stability. ( ) The balance between reform, development and stability lies in realizing and safeguarding people's interests and improving their living standards, Luo said, adding that social stability should bebased on both sustainable economic development and harmonious ethnic relations. He reiterated the importance of implementing the Party's policies toward minority nationalities and religions in a thoroughand comprehensive way, calling for adherence to the system of regional autonomy for minority nationalities and urging the local governments to cultivate a contingent of cadres from the Han and Uygur nationalities.

China to get the bullet train
2004-08-30 Xinhua News
Chinese train manufacturer Nanche Sifang Locomotive and six Japanese companies have won the bid for China's new bullet train. The Chinese Railway Ministry's 12 billion US dollar project aims to double the speed of trains on five major existing railway lines to 200 kilometers per hour. The five train lines, stretching over 2,000 kilometers, include one linking Beijing and Shenyang in the province of Liaoning and another to connect Qingdao in the coastal province of Shandong with Jinan in the same province. ( ) This would mark the first major transfer of Japan's Shinkansen technology to China.

Jiang urges improving military equipment
2004-08-30 Xinhua News
Chairman of China's Central Military Commission Jiang Zemin Monday called for raising the level of weapons in China's military, saying it is a priority matter to brace against military fighting, and that it is an important strategic task that will impact the country's lasting peace and stability. Jiang made the remarks when he and Hu Jintao, who is vice chairman of the commission, met with military staff working to improve the combat readiness of existing military equipment and the ability to guarantee the supply of such equipment. Jiang urged full preparation for winning a fight on existing weapons, improving the overall combat capability of military units and making preparations against war.

Legal aid system improved to help the disadvantaged
2004-08-29 Xinhua News
Since its inception some a decade ago, China's legal aid system has helped more than 1.3 million impoverished people who otherwise could not afford for litigation, and also provided free legal counseling for 6 million people nationwide. ( ) China began to establish its legal aid system in 1994, aiming to give those in need an equal status in court by offering them free legal assistance. Statistics show that the number of those with less than 637 yuan (about 80 US dollars) of annual net income in China rose by 800,000 in 2003. And approximately 29 million people, or 3 percent of the total population in the country, were inadequately fed and clothed. ( ) By the end of June, China had set up 2,892 legal aid offices, with 85 percent located in towns, and villages, where most of the country's needy people lived. The number of legal aid personnel working in these offices reaches approximately 10,000, with half of them holding lawyer's certificate. Another 120,000 lawyers, and many more volunteers from law schools, non-government organizations have also rendered their hand in legal aid. ( ) "The money we provide is far from adequate, especially in the western part of China," noted Minister of Justice Zhang Fusen. ( ) Pertaining to criminal cases, quite a few people in the country still do not quite understand why the government pays lawyers to defend and plead for the accused, Chen said, citing that another big obstacle for legal aid involving criminal cases.

China amends disease law, bans blood trade
2004-08-30 Xinhua News
The National People's Congress (NPC), China's parliament, has passed a law banning the buying or selling of blood to prevent the spread of AIDS and outlawing discrimination against victims of infectious diseases.( ) Most significant was the revised Law on the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases, which requires the government to guarantee funds for infectious disease prevention. The law stipulates that governments of various levels should strengthen prevention and control of AIDS and take measures to prevent the spread of the disease. This is the first time that AIDS is specifically targeted in the law. Statistics show that among the reported AIDS cases in China, 11 percent were infected in the processes of having blood drawn or blood transmissions. According to estimates of experts, there are 840,000 people infected with AIDS/HIV in China. The law also rules out discrimination against people infected with contagious diseases, people carrying the pathogen of a contagious disease and people who are suspected of having a contagious disease. ( )



China faces elderly dilemma
2004-08-21Xinhua News
China, the world's most populous country, is now crowned with another title: one of the world's most rapidly aging nations, China Daily reported Saturday. According to statistics from the National Population and Family Planning Commission (NPFPC), the country's top population policy-maker, residents who are 65 or older already accounted for 7.1 per cent of the overall population at the end of 2001. ( ) Declining fertility rates, partly the result of national family planning policies, and prolonged life expectancies are the two main factors behind the aging crisis. "China is now a country with a very low fertility rate with its total rate consistently below the sub-replacement level since 1990," said Yu Xuejun, director of the Policy and Regulation Department at the NPFPC. Meanwhile, the national average life expectancy grew from a mere 41 years in 1950 to 70 years in 2000. ( )

Mobile phone users hit 310mil. in China
2004-08-25 Xinhua News
Mobile phone subscribers in China increased by 40.3 million to 310 million as of the end of July. According to Ministry of Information and Industry statistics, China's fixed-line subscribers increased by 36.2 million to a total of 299 million in the same period. The growing number of mobile and fixed-line subscribers is a popular yardstick of how China's robust economic growth is filtering down to its 1.3 billion population. ( )

Über 1 Mio Privatauto in Beijing
2004-08-22 Xinhua Wang (Übersetzung)
Laut der Beijinger Tageszeitung "Beijing Daily" wurden im Juli 04 mehr als 1 Mio Privatautos registriert. Dies sind knapp 50% aller Autos in Beijing. Jeder Siebte hat somit ein Auto. Die meisten Zulassungen waren für das Jahr 04 in Beijing zu verzeichnen, mit einer Zahl von 166000 Anmeldungen. ( ) Beijing hat im Vergleich zu den anderen chinesischen Städten, wie Shanghai oder Guangzhou die meisten Privatfahrzeuge. ( ) Doch trotz den latenten Verkehrstaus wolle die Stadtbehörde keine einschränkenden Massnahmen ergreifen. ( )



3:29 a.m. August 20, 2004
ULAN BATOR, Mongolia - A Harvard-educated journalist was chosen by lawmakers Friday to be Mongolia's next prime minister, ending a two-month-old feud over disputed legislative elections. Tsakhilganiin Elbegdorj, 41, will lead Mongolia's first coalition government since the end of communist rule in 1990. It will be his second term as prime minister, following an eight-month stint in 1998. The Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party, which led the last government, agreed to form the "Grand Coalition Government" with the former opposition after both failed to win enough seats in June 27 elections to form a government on their own. The 66 lawmakers who attended the session Friday of the 76-seat Great Hural voted unanimously to approve Elbegdorj as prime minister. The agreement followed weeks of legal wrangling over elections that were a stunning setback to the People's Revolutionary Party, which had held all but four seats in the last parliament. ( )


Patrick Dreher
Embassy of Switzerland

The Press review is a random selection of political and social related news gathered from various media and news services located in the PRC, edited or translated by the Embassy of Switzerland in Beijing and distributed among Swiss Government Offices. The Embassy does not accept responsibility for accuracy of quotes or truthfulness of content. Additionally the contents of the selected news mustn't correspond to the opinion of the Embassy.
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