The meeting highlighted the importance of implementi

ting the spirit of December’s Central Economic Work Conference.

Macro policies should be stable, micro policies should be flexible and social policies should guarantee the basic needs of the grassroots

people, the statement said. Macro policies should focus on promoting high-quality growth and stimulating market vitality.

The importance of manufacturing’s high-quality development in stabilizing economic growt

h was stressed. Traditional industries should be guided to upgrade, and new industries should grow stronger.

The development of small and medium-sized companies and private businesses should be supported through measures like s

peeding up the supply-side structural reform of finance and providing better loan services, the stat

ement said. It also reaffirmed that houses should be used for living rather than for profit.

Reform should be further deepened and opening-up boosted, and forei

gn capital should have bigger access to the Chinese market. Poverty reduction is a key meas

ure of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, which must be achieved by the end of next y

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Remaining poverty alleviation tasks are quite arduou

s, and government departments must make continuous efforts to ensure tasks are completed. Off

icials of poverty-stricken counties must keep a close eye on problems to ensure people can escape poverty.

The Party’s publicity work was also discussed. It’s the top political task to learn and publi

cize Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, the statement said. A

ll Party committees must pay great attention to publicity work and ensure the implementation of regulations.

A draft amendment to the Securities Law was submitted Saturday to a bimonthly session of

the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, China’s top legislature, for a third reading.

The latest revisions to the law include rules on the newly-devised science and technol

ogy innovation board, which will pilot a registration-based initial public offering (IPO) system.

Under the current IPO system, new shares are subject to approval from the China Securities Regulatory Commission before being listed.

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China’s first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, and latest nuc

More than 60 countries will send delegations to join multinational naval events marking the anniv

ersary, and over 30 countries of them will send major navy leaders to participate, according to Qiu.

Nearly 20 foreign vessels of various capabilities, including destroyers, frigates and landing ships, will join Chinese vessels in the naval parade, sh

owing to the world the “firm determination to safeguard peace and seek development with joint efforts,” Qiu said.

Organizing multinational naval parades is a unique ceremonial activity of navies, according to Qiu.

The Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy has been active in provi

ding security products for the international community since its founding, Qiu said.

The navy has paid over 100 visits to 94 countries and 138 ports, and has held more

than 60 joint military drills with foreign navies over the 70 years, according to Qiu.

Since 2008, the navy has sent 32 escort fleets, 103 vessels, 69 helicopters and more than 27,000 offic

ers and soldiers to escort over 6,600 vessels, more than a half of which were foreign merchant ships, he added.

Since 2010, the naval hospital ship Peace Ark has traveled to 43 countr

ies and regions and provided free medical services to over 230,000 people, Qiu said.

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Viewpoint Adding gene-editing in draft civil lawnceptual art

On Saturday, a new item was added to China’s draft civil law, which put

s all medical and scientific research related to human genes and embryos under stricter re

gulation. Two experts shared their views with China Daily’s Zhang Zhouxiang:

One major change this time is that embryos are clearly included in the draft regulation. Actually,

gene-editing of embryos deserves more attention than gene-editing of adults or children.

First, gene-editing of embryos might more easily get out of control an

d pose more risks to the society. The safety of gene-e

diting for embryos remains unknown and the availability limit of the technology needs to be confirmed.

The birth of the twin gene-edited babies in November 2018 sounded an alarming bell to all. If the embr

yos with edited genes are born, how should we protect their rights as citizens? Will they suffer fro

m discrimination? Who will be responsible if the gene-editing causes health problems?

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Wang, the Chinese think tank member, said many of

nternational relations scholars of his generation think of the US

as an example of the value of “freedom, democracy, fairness and human rights”.

“But those words are no longer applicable to describe the US today,” he said.

Wang said that for him, cancellation of the visa is nothing m

ore than a short-term absence from US academic activities, and “it is the US’ loss, not ours”.

He also said the decision would not affect the Chinese think tank he leads in continuing aca

demic exchanges with the US, and he suggests that China should not take countermeasures over such matters.

“No matter how petty the US becomes, China should still stick to its open attitude rather compete for who’s worse,” he said.

The China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative is not a geopolitical tool or a debt trap for particip

ating countries, but a platform for cooperation, State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said on Friday.

Wang made the remark at a press conference ahead of the second Belt and Road F

orum on International Cooperation, which will be held in Beijing next week.

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The eastern area and central China region are accele

rating the push for economic upgrading, which offers strong impetus for the growth. Despite the pressure, we still can see gr

owth momentum,” Zhang said during a macroeconomic seminar earlier this month in Beijing.

“Recently, the government has introduced a series of su

pportive policies which will gradually help grow the real economy,” Zhang added.

NDRC said a further 3.24 million new urban jobs were added in t

he first quarter, with surveyed unemployment ra

te remaining at a comparatively low level of 5.2 percent in March. And consu

mer prices registered a moderate rise of 1.8 percent in the first three months of this year.

A basic equilibrium in the balance of payments was maintai

ned, and China’s foreign exchange reserves exceeded $3 trillion, Yuan added.

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The situation is very much like the ceiling of a roo

m in which airborne particulate matter is present. The lower the ceilin

g is, the higher the density of pollutants which then mix with the cleaner air.

With a low mixing layer, Taihang mountain range to the west and the Yanshan mountai

n range to the north serve as walls that form a semi-closed “room” in the Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei cluster.

The high level of emissions is the major reason for air pollution in th

e greater Beijing area, and meteorological conditions also play a key role as an exte

rnal factor, said Xu Xiangde, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences.

Zhang Xiaoye, Xu’s colleague, said the “marked effect” of continuous pollutant accu

mulation on meteorological conditions could make overall pollution even worse.

“After the accumulation reaches a certain level, it will further wor

sen the meteorological conditions, which then will further affect air quality, causing explosive

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Top economic planner bullish on reaching annual growth

China’s economy, despite headwinds, has enjoyed a good start in the first quarter of 2019, and the country has the confide

nce to achieve the annual projected growth goal, said the country’s top economic planner.

“The first quarter’s stable economic development has laid a solid foundation for the an

nual growth,” said Yuan Da, spokesperson with the National Development and Reform Commission.

“The economy has stayed on the track of steady growth. We have the confidence, conditio

ns and capability to meet the projected targets for economic and social development this year.”

Yuan made the remarks at the NDRC press conference on Thursday in Beijing.

According to data from the National Bureau of Statistics, China’s economy expanded at a faster-than-expected 6.4 perce

nt year-on-year in the first quarter. The growth was unchanged from that in the fourth quarter in 2018.

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Kim Jong-un supervises test of new tactical guided weapon

Kim Jong-un, top leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) supervised the

test-fire of a new tactical guided weapon, state media Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported on Thursday.

Kim “supervised and guided a test-fire of a new-type tactical guided weapon cond

ucted by the Academy of Defense Science on Wednesday,” the KCNA reported.

The design indexes of the weapon, with advantages of “the p

eculiar mode of guiding flight and the load of a powerful warhead,” were “perfectly verified at the test-fire con

ducted in various modes of firing at different targets,” the report said, giving no details of the weapon.

“Tactical” implies a short distance weapon instead of a long-range ballistic missile in military battles.

According to the report, Kim described the development as “an event of v

ery weighty significance in increasing the combat power of the People’s Army,” sayi

ng that the scientists and workers have done a great work in increasing the country’s capabilities of

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The most recent incident was Saturday in Jinjiang, Fujian

when the late Qing Dynasty residence of Wu Lu, the province’s last zhuangyuan (top scorer on imperial examinations), was damaged.

Fire this year also destroyed a bridge dating from four centuries ago in Nanping, Fuji

an, a Qing Dynasty residence in Wenzhou, Zhejiang, and an office structure from the 1930s in Fuzhou, Jiangxi.

The operators of the sites hit by fire will be responsible for the dam

age, said the heritage administration. “Electrical faults and loose supervision over the use of fire

during renovation are the main reasons” for the damage, the administration’s statement said.

Though the fire at Notre Dame is under investigation, Frenc

h officials said they suspect its source might have been related to restoration work on the cathedral.

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