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
  4.7-8.7.2005, No. 70  
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Foreign Policy

Hu calls for open, just world trade
2005-07-08 China Daily
GLENEAGLES, Scotland: China yesterday called on developed countries to back up developing countries' efforts to foster open and just world trade. President Hu Jintao, together with heads of state from India, Brazil, Mexico and South Africa, joined in calling for more consideration for developing countries. At the outreach session of the G8 summit with the five major developing countries, Hu said: "Together, we (G8+5) account for about 75 per cent of the global economy. We can do a great service to the balanced and sustained development of the world economy if we do a good job with our own economies." "To this end, we should commit ourselves to adopting effective fiscal and monetary policies, readjusting our economic structures and promoting balanced and sustained development of the world economy," Hu said. () Chinese President Hu Jintao and British Prime Minister Tony Blair pledged efforts to promote the Sino-British relations and ties between China and the European Union. () On the relations between China and Britain, President Hu said bilateral ties have shown good momentum of growth in recent years. The China-Britain relationship has entered a new stage of development since the two countries announced the establishment of a comprehensive strategic partnership last year, Hu said. Britain remains the biggest EU investor in China and the third largest trading partner of China within the European bloc, the Chinese president noted. Coordination between the two countries in international and regional affairs has been strengthened, he added. Further developing the Sino-British comprehensive strategic partnership is in keeping with the interests of both peoples and is conducive to world peace and development, Hu said. He expressed belief that China-Britain relations will be further developed during Blair's new term in office. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the EU. () The Chinese president also pointed out that the Chinese side believes that the aim to lift the arms embargo against China is to eliminate a political barrier hindering the smooth expansion of China-EU relations. ()

Hu: SCO future hinges on action
2005-07-06 China Daily
ASTANA, Kazakhstan -- The future of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) depends on whether members could translate consensus into action and render plans into reality, Chinese President Hu Jintao said here Tuesday. "As long as we take implementation as the central piece of our future work and untiringly do concrete things and seek concrete results in deepening and expanding pragmatic cooperation and solidly advance the realization of various set targets, the SCO would surely be full of vitality and continuously bear abundant fruits," Hu told an SCO summit in the Kazakh capital. () The development of the SCO has entered an important stage and members should strive to translate the organization's cooperation potential into actual results and adequately cope with challenges brought by complex international and regional changes, the Chinese president said. Hu listed security, economic and human resources cooperation as primary tasks facing the organization. "Without stability, there can be no talk of any development," Hu said, urging member countries and the whole region to promote the implementation of documents and agreements on fighting extremism, separatism and terrorism, and conduct effective information exchange and step up research on the establishment of emergency mechanisms. On economic cooperation, Hu asked for more efforts to implement a multilateral economic cooperation plan and work for the early establishment of a banking union. He also asked to explore bilateral and multilateral cooperation modes that involve both governments and enterprises. () A SCO declaration issued Tuesday at the end of the summit said the leaders of SCO member states pledged their continued support for the international coalition's anti-terrorism operations in Afghanistan. However, as large-scale military operations against terrorism have come to an end in Afghanistan, the leaders said, it is necessary for parties to the coalition to set a deadline for the temporary use of SCO member states' infrastructure facilities and for their military presence in these countries.

China, Russia call for multilateralism in world affairs
2005-07-04 People's Daily
China and Russia on Friday called for multilateralism in world affairs and respect for international law. Countries must be allowed to decide autonomously on their internal affairs while international issues should be solved through dialogue and consultations on the basis of multilateralism, says a joint statement signed here by Russian President Vladimir Putin and visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao. The international community should completely renounce the mentality of confrontation and alliance; there should be no pursuit of monopoly or domination of world affairs; and countries of the world should not be divided into a leading camp and a subordinate camp, said the joint statement. Every country must be assured of the right to choose its own path of development that fits its national realities, the right to participate in international affairs as an equal, and the right to development on an equal footing, it says. Differences and disputes must be solved through peaceful means rather than through unilateralism or coercion. There should be no use or threatened use of force, says the joint statement. Only on the basis of universally recognized tenents and norms of international law, and under an impartial and rational world order, can problems facing mankind be solved, says the document. All countries should strictly observe the principles of mutual respect for each other's sovereignty and territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other's internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence, it says. The joint statement believes that the world is undergoing a historic change. The establishment of a new world order will be a long and complicated process, it says. The central task of mankind in the 21st century is to safeguard peace, stability and security for the whole mankind, and to realize full-scale coordinated development on the basis of equality, maintenance of sovereignty, mutual respect, mutual benefit and ensurance of good development prospects for future generations. ()

China condemns terrorist attacks in London
2005-07-08 Xinhuanet
China on Thursday said it was shocked at the terrorist explosions in London and strongly condemned the terrorist attacks. A wave of explosions rocked at least three London subway trains and ripped apart a double decker bus during the morning rush hour in London, leaving 33 dead and more than 360 injured. Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao said China opposes terrorism of any form. "Anyone who launches terrorist attacks and causes casualties of civilians should be resolutely condemned, regardless of his or her purpose." The tragedy also shows that the global fight against terrorism "remains an arduous task and the international community still has a long way to go," the spokesman said. "China will continue to enhance cooperation with the international community in this field," he added.

Rice to visit nation at weekend, says FM
2005-07-07 China Daily
With one eye on the current nuclear situation on the Korean Peninsula, US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will begin her second visit to Asia in four months when she arrives in China this weekend. At the invitation of Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing, Rice will visit China from July 9 to 10 to exchange views on Sino-US relations and international and regional issues of common concern, sources with the Foreign Ministry said yesterday. China is the first stop on Rice's four-nation trip, which will also take her to Thailand, the Republic of Korea and Japan, spokesman for the US Department of State Sean McCormack said in a press statement. The nuclear issue concerning the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK), co-operation in fighting terrorism and trans-national crimes, and tsunami recovery and reconstruction efforts are all on Rice's agenda. () Rice's visit to Seoul, scheduled for July 12-13, comes after a Washington visit by ROK Unification Minister Chung Dong-young, who briefed US officials on his meeting with DPRK leader Kim Jong-il. Kim was quoted by Chung as saying that the DPRK "is willing to rejoin the Six-Party Talks as early as this month, if the US recognizes and respects the DPRK." Kim's statement has reignited hope that the stalled Six-Party Talks may resume in the near future.

EU's Barroso to visit China
2005-07-06 People's Daily
At the invitation of Chinese government, Jose Manuel Barroso, President of EU Commission, will pay an official visit to China from July 14 to 18, said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao in Beijing on July 5 at a regular press conference. Liu said, it is Barroso's first visit to China as president of EU Commission. During his visit, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao will hold talks with him. The two sides will exchange views on issues of common concern, including EU's recognition of China's full market economy status and the lifting of EU's arms embargo on China. Besides Beijing, Barroso will visit Shanghai, Macao and Hong Kong. "We welcome Barroso's visit to China, and expect to exchange ideas with him on deepening mutually-beneficial cooperation," Liu said.

Wen: China a 'true friend and partner'
2005-07-06 China Daily
KUNMING: China will always remain a "true and good neighbour, partner and friend" of its neighbouring countries, Premier Wen Jiabao said yesterday. He made the pledge at the opening ceremony of the Second Summit of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS), themed "a stronger partnership for common prosperity". The GMS countries include China, Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Viet Nam, which all share the Lancang-Mekong River. To tighten intra-regional trade links, China has decided to expand the range of products eligible for preferential tariffs from Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar as of January 1 next year, Wen revealed. Co-operation should be intensified on the prevention and control of avian flu, HIV/AIDS and other major communicable diseases, Wen said. He suggested the GMS nations set up surveillance networks for such diseases, and improve information transparency on the disease situation. To this end, China proposed to establish a GMS Health Forum to coordinate and promote co-operation in the health sector, Wen said. The premier also called for more endeavour to broaden exchanges on agricultural technologies and information, accelerate the building of agricultural information websites, and convene a GMS agriculture ministers' meeting. He stressed that China not only pursues its own well-being and development, but also seeks common prosperity for all countries. China is both a beneficiary of and a contributor to the GMS, he said. ()

Japan's white paper adds chill to China ties
2005-07-05 China Daily
Two white papers from Japan have added a chill to the current low in China-Japan relations. A summary of the country's 2005 white paper on national defence, published by Yomiuri Shimbun on Sunday, devotes more detail to China than previous such documents. The white paper is saying Japan needs to respond to China's increased defence budget. () The message from the Japanese Government is clear: It has resolved to drive a wedge between the two countries on trade. Last year China surpassed the United States to become Japan's biggest trading partner for the first time since records began. Japan's 2005 white paper on trade evidences the mentality of some Japanese government officials: To build ties with ASEAN countries as a bulwark against China's growing influence. This report personifies Japan's apparent intent to heighten political tensions with China. China has not been the sole beneficiary of bilateral trade to date. Rather, Sino-Japanese trade has had a direct and considerable influence on Japan's economy, while China's booming economy has provided Japanese companies opportunities. () The two white papers smack of all-out hostility on the part of Japan, which is counter-productive and a mindset that will build obstacles between the bilateral relations.


Domestic Policy

Mainland official meets with New Party delegation from Taiwan
2005-07-07 People's Daily
A senior leader of Guangdong Province in south China and visiting New Party Chairman Yok Mu-ming from Taiwan both emphasized the importance of unity of the Chinese nation during their meeting Wednesday afternoon. "Sixty years ago, the Chinese nation eventually won the war of resistance against Japanese aggression and recovered Taiwan through unprecedented national unity," Zhang Dejiang, secretary of the Guangdong provincial committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), said. "The victory is of great significance, which shows to the world that the Chinese people's determination to safeguard national independence, democracy, freedom, national sovereignty, territorial integrity and world peace is unshakable, and so is their determination to realize peaceful development and the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation," said Zhang, who is also a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee. () The delegation will also visit the mainland cities of Nanjing, Dalian and Beijing to mark the 60th anniversary of China's victory in the war of resistance against Japanese aggression.

Hundreds protest against Japan in HK
2005-07-07 People's Daily
Over a hundred people of different groups Thursday protested before the Consulate General of Japan in Hong Kong in commemoration of the 68th anniversary of "the Lugouqiao Incident" which marked the outbreak of the eight- year-long War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression. Representatives from Hong Kong Reparation Association demanded apologies and compensations from the Japanese government and criticized the right-wing forces in Japan for their attitude toward militarism and distortion of history textbooks. Around 20 representatives of the group also marched to the Consulate General of the United States of America in Hong Kong, protesting against its support of Japan to become a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. ()

Ex-vice-mayor gets life imprisonment
2005-07-06 Xinhuanet
BEIJING. Li Xin, former vice-mayor of Jining in Shandong Province, was jailed for life on Monday for accepting more than 4.5 million yuan (US$544,000) in bribes between early 1991 and April 2004. Prosecutors say during the period Li Xin held a series of posts, including director of the Jining Machinery Research Institute, director of Jining New and High-tech Industrial Zone and later vice-mayor of the city. He exploited his position to get kickbacks of money and goods from more than 40 companies or units. Investigators who searched Li Xin's home found a large amount of cash, foreign currency, credit cards, store cards, expensive watches and jewellery. In total he accepted 110 bribes worth 4.5 million yuan. In return Li Xin helped them in land deals, commodity sales, payment for goods, house-purchases and construction projects in blatant disregard of the law, Weifang Intermediate Court said in its judgment. ()

26.1 million rural residents living in absolute poverty in China
2005-07-06 People's Daily
There are still 26.1 million rural residents living in absolute poverty in China, 49.77 million with low income and over 22 million urban residents covered by subsistence allowances, Li Xuju, Chinese Minister of Civil Affairs revealed at a national working conference. Li said China will ensure establishment of basic framework of the social assistance system for the destitute living in extreme poverty in urban and rural areas in 90 percent of provinces (autonomous regions and municipalities) and 70 percent of counties by the end of this year. In addition, China will raise subsidy standards for people under key assistance. The central finance has earmarked 7.46 billion yuan this year as subsidy, an increase of 3.53 billion yuan year-on-year. According to Li Xueju, in the first half of the year, China has allocated 1.84 billion yuan as spring famine relief funds, which helped 45.52 million disaster-stricken people. At the starting phase, China's charity cause has many problems such as charity organizations not enough, laws and regulations on charity yet to be improved and people's weak charity awareness.

China takes measures to curb increasing crimes by "floating people"
2005-07-06 People's Daily
The Chinese government will take measures to curb the increasing crimes by the country's large number of "floating people" in the second half of the year, said Wu Dongzhi, director of the public order department under the Public Security Ministry. Chinese police have been ordered to strengthen the inspection of places with dense "floating" populations, such as small hotels, construction fields, markets, recreation grounds and the suburbs of major cities. Increasing economic opportunities in urban regions have attracted nearly one hundred million former rural farmers, especially to the relatively developed coastal areas. Urban migrants, who typically received poor educations in the villages where they grew up, often experience terrible living conditions and extremely low salaries. Some turn to crime for an income, becoming a problem for police. In 2004, the public security departments dealt with 687,000 cases involving urban migrants, accounting for 12.7 percent of the total cases. The number of arrested urban migrant suspects reached 604,000, covering 40 percent of the total in the same period, sources with the ministry said. () About 25.4 percent of residents in cities and towns say that urban migrants usually commit serious crimes, including burglary, forgery and prostitution, according to a survey by the National Bureaus of Statistics (NBS)

China tightens control on alcohol sales
2005-07-08 Xinhuanet
China has tightened regulations prohibiting the sale of alcohol to minors in what is to be a step toward establishing a legal drinking age, state press reported. New regulations issues on July 1 ban the sale of drinks with an alcohol content higher than 0.5 percent to persons under 18, the Beijing News reported. "These regulations are sort of preliminary standards that are in the initial stage and are not stringent standards," a ministry official told the paper, suggesting stricter regulations were to come. "Everyone expects that the scope of these regulations will effectively curb the increasing drunkenness and criminal activity after drinking of the youth," the paper said. China does not have a legal drinking age although a 1999 law on "Preventing Crime Amongst Minors" does carry a stipulation that tobacco and alcohol should not be sold to minors, the paper said.

Dealer questioned for vaccine incident
2005-07-05 China Daily
The drug wholesaler linked to an alleged harmful vaccine incident, which hospitalized 300 schoolchildren, was arrested early on Monday morning. Zhang Peng, 29, disappeared after reports broke that a child had died after being immunized against Hepatitis A in Sixian County, Anhui Province. Zhang, based in Chuzhou, allegedly sold 3,000 doses of the Hepatitis A vaccine produced by Pukang Biotech Co in Zhejiang Province to a number of primary and secondary schools. Three local health workers, who are believed to have acted as go-betweens in the deal between health providers and schools, were arrested earlier. All but 40 of the children hospitalized had been discharged by Saturday. The others are still under medical observation in local hospitals, said Wang Zhen, spokeswoman for the county government. () The local health department has said it believed the crisis resulted from an overreaction by some vaccinated children and that mass panic spread after the death of a six-year-old girl. But the cause of her death has not been determined as no autopsy was carried out after her parents went ahead with her funeral. The sale and use of vaccines produced by the Zhejiang company were banned on the orders of the central government last week. In a separate development, a vaccine for a type of haemorrhagic fever reportedly left 44 school children in Northeast China's Jilin Province ill. ()

Heat sends 1,200 to Beijing hospitals
2005-07-07 SCMP
Soaring temperatures in Beijing have seen nearly 1,200 people admitted to hospital with heatstroke and other ailments during the past two days. Emergency services were called to pick up 1,194 residents in the capital on Tuesday and early yesterday as temperatures reached 38 degrees Celsius, the Beijing Evening News reported. The newspaper reported that about 132 of those taken to hospitals with heat-related illnesses were suspected to have suffered from heatstroke. The heat was also causing an average of 200 public buses a day to break down.

Beijing shuts down over 700 problematic entertainment venues
2005-07-06 Xinhuanet
BEIJING - More than 700 problematic venues of entertainment have been shut down in China's capital of Beijing in a recent special task law enforcement week led by the city's public security departments. An official with the brigade for administration of public order of the municipal public security bureau said from June 20 through to July 3, they dealt with 1,700 places of entertainment which were found to have problems such as doing business without or beyond permits, prostitution, visiting prostitutes and paid accompanying service in cooperation with other departments of industry and commerce, market administration and culture. The law enforcement workers ordered over 700 of the 1,700 venues to be shut down permanently, and rendered austerity measures, including giving fines, temporary closure for improvement, to the remainder, said the official. In the special task action, they also destroyed 82 dens or cliques that operated law-violating activities such as prostitution under the cloak of offering entertainment services and detained 321 people who were suspected of prostitution, prostitute-visiting, gambling, drug abuse or trafficking, paid accompanying services.

Bishop detained for sixth time, US group says
2005-07-06 SCMP
A bishop in China's underground Catholic church has been detained for the sixth time in 18 months as the government continues harassing unofficial congregations, a US-based group reported. Government officials picked up Bishop Jia Zhiguo , from the diocese of Zhengding in Hebei province , from his home and drove him to an unknown location early on Monday, the Cardinal Kung Foundation said. "Government officials telephoned Bishop Jia in advance, notifying him that he was being picked up and ordering the bishop that he was to tell the people that he was being taken away by the government officials to visit a physician," the foundation

Pastor goes on trial over huge bible haul
2005-07-08 SCMP
An underground Protestant pastor, his wife and two other church members went on trial yesterday over a cache of 230,000 Bibles and other Christian books uncovered at their church, his lawyer said. Pastor Cai Zhuohua and the three others have been in detention for 10 months and had been charged with "illegal business practices", lawyer Gao Zhisheng said. He said prosecutors were unable to present evidence at the Haidian District People's Court in Beijing that they were involved in such activities because the publications were solely for free distribution among church members. "The books did not enter the market and there were no trading activities involved at all," he said. The court did not announce a verdict and Mr Gao said he was unsure when it would be announced.



Dalai Lama satisfied with talks about Tibet
2005-07-08 SCMP
The Dalai Lama has expressed satisfaction with the talks between his envoys and central government officials in Bern, Switzerland, last week. "[The Dalai Lama] was also pleased that we had the opportunity to address extensively the issues raised by the Chinese government and to clarify in detail our positions on fundamental issues," said spokesman Thupten Samphel. "The definition of Tibet and a democratically elected Tibetan government are the two main issues that have to be resolved in the Tibetan issue," he said. "The discussions were concrete and substantive, and held in a cordial, frank, and business-like atmosphere. Despite the existing areas of disagreement, Zhu Weiqun was pleased that our direct contact has now become stable." Mr Zhu is a vice-director of the Communist Party's United Front Department.



China berates U.S. over Unocal vote
2005-07-07 China Daily
China criticized the U.S. House of Representatives on Wednesday for demanding a review of an attempted takeover of California-based oil producer Unocal Corp. by China's CNOOC Ltd. "We demand that the U.S. Congress correct its mistaken ways of politicizing economic and trade issues and stop interfering in the normal commercial exchanges between enterprises of two countries," the Foreign Ministry said in a faxed statement. The House last Thursday voted 333-92 in favor of a measure to block the Bush administration from approving CNOOC's $18.5 billion bid. It also passed, with an overwhelming majority, a nonbinding resolution calling on the Bush administration to immediately conduct a review of the possible takeover, noting that it could threaten U.S. national security. The bid by CNOOC, China's top offshore oil producer, topped a $16 billion-plus cash and stock offer that Unocal had already accepted from Chevron Corp. CNOOC's largest shareholder is the Chinese government. The Chinese firm's bid has become a complicating factor in diplomatic ties between China and the United States and comes at a sensitive time when oil prices are near record highs. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is scheduled to visit China on Saturday and Sunday.

Chinese, French officials discuss IPR, textile trade issues
2005-07-05 People's Daily
Chinese Vice Premier Wu Yi said in Beijing Monday that China hopes France will play a positive role in promoting the steady development of Sino-EU textile trade. Wu told visiting French Minister Delegate for Foreign Trade Christine Lagarde that textile trade is an important part of Sino-EU trade and it has been proved that problems in textile trade can be solved through exchanges and consultation. China and the European Union signed a textile trade memorandum in June which prevented textile trade friction between the two major economies from escalating into a trade war. Wu said that China attaches importance to its comprehensive strategic partnership with France and appreciates France's adherence to the one-China policy and opposition to "Taiwan independence." "We also appreciate France's positive stance in removing the arms sale embargo against China and on recognizing China's full-market economy status," Wu said. Lagarde agreed with Wu on her remarks on bilateral relations. She appreciated China's efforts in protecting intellectual property rights. ()

Strategic reserve to see oil by year's end
2005-07-05 China Daily
By year's end, China's effort to complete its new strategic oil reserve is expected to be completed, with oil flowing into the site, senior government officials confirmed to China Daily. The move is not expected to have a major impact on international crude oil markets, since the crude will come from domestic supplies, officials said. A senior director with the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) yesterday said in a telephone interview that the country is to wrap up the first-phase of construction of its initial strategic oil reserve at Zhenhai in East China's Jiangsu Province by the end of this year. The official declined to elaborate and refused to be named. Wang Jiming, vice-president of Asia's largest oil refiner, Sinopec, earlier told reporters in Qingdao that the first-phase of construction at the Zhenhai reserve base will conclude in the third quarter, with oil flowing into the facility by year's end. The local oil reserve administration at Zhenhai in Zhejiang said the 16-tank facility is to be completed by the end of August, and the final capacity of the oil reserve base will hold up to 52 oil tanks to store 5.2 million tons of oil, a recent Xinhua report said. Upon completion, the Zhenhai base will be the largest one among the four strategic oil reserves across the nation now being planned. () Government officials said the stockpiling of reserve oil in China is not likely to pose a threat to the oil market in the international arena, as the country will rely on the domestic supplies rather than imports to fuel the oil reserves. Zhang Guobao, vice-minister of the National Development and Reform Commission, earlier last month said the country will fill the reserves with domestic oil, rather than oil bought on international markets. He spoke on the sidelines of a conference in New Orleans, Louisiana of the United States. Beside, China's annual oil imports only account for a minor proportion of the world's oil trade, and blaming the skyrocketing crude prices on the international market on China is "unreasonable" and "groundless," Zhang added. China imported 120 million tons of crude oil last year, accounting for some 40 per cent of the country's total oil consumption.

First Chinese cars arrive for sale in W. Europe
2005-07-06 China Daily
The first Chinese cars for sale in Western Europe arrived in the Belgian port of Antwerp on Tuesday. Dutch car dealer Peter Bijvelds said he had already found buyers for the 200 Landwind five-door sports utility vehicles (SUVs) and was confident of selling about 2,000 of them this year. Bijvelds said he was selling the cars, made by Jiangling Landwind Motor of Jiangling Motors Group, for nearly half the price of their nearest competitor. "I think there's a big market," he told reporters. Bijvelds has a five-year exclusive deal with Jiangling to sell the SUVs in 27 European countries, and said he was holding talks to set up a distribution network in Belgium before expanding across the continent. Priced at about 17,000 euros ($20,220) after taxes in the Netherlands, the SUV will be the last thing Europe's car makers want to see on the road as they grapple with weak consumer spending, high raw material and fuel costs and relentless price competition. Bijvelds' dealership, based in the southeastern Dutch village of Erp, is making slight alterations to the Chinese vehicles to meet Europe's strict emissions standards. ()


Julie Kong
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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