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Despite China’s reiteration about it being committed to pea

ceful exploration of space and its openness to cooperation with any country in its development of space technology, the US will not give up its desire to hav

e dominance in this domain, and it is devoting a great deal of effort to presenting China and Russia as threats to serve this purpose.

Its huge investment in the development of a “Space Force” will, as a result, inevitably give rise

to an arms race off the Earth, which will shatter the human dream of the peaceful exploration of space.Be

ijing’s environmental watchdog is considering adopting the National VI (B) emission standards ahead of the cou

ntry’s scheduled time, aiming to reduce vehicle emissions and enhance air pollution control in the capital.

According to a draft plan published by the Beijing Municipal Ecological Environment Bureau on Monday, the new st

andard would come into effect first for diesel-powered trucks in public transportation and environmental sa

nitation industries and heavy-duty vehicles powered by gas in July, and then extend to other vehicles beginning in 2020.

Sales of these vehicles would be banned after the respective deadlines, but owners could

still register vehicles that meet the current standard one month after these deadlines, according to the draft.

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The central authorities plan to adopt the National VIemission

The bureau is soliciting public opinion on the draft until Feb 20.

With the new standard, major polluting gas from light-duty vehicles, including ca

rbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide, will be reduced by about 50 percent and em

issions of particulate matter will be reduced by about 40 percent, according to the bureau.

For heavy-duty diesel-powered trucks, the emissions of nitrogen oxide and particulate matter are expected to drop by more than 60 percent, it said.

Mobile sources, mainly vehicles, contributed 45 percent of locally generated

hazardous particles known as PM2.5 in 2017, outnumbering all other types of sources, according to the bureau.

Beijing has seen continuous improvement in its air quality. The PM2.5 density in th

e capital in 2018 stood at 51 micrograms per cubic meter, down by 12.1 percent year-on-year.

Officials and experts have said, however, it could be increasingly challe

nging for the city to further reduce air pollution after the local government has taken all ma

jor measures that could achieve quick results, including the shifting of bulk coal to clean energy as a heating source.

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Today, the situation is radically different. Space exploration is

nger the prerogative of the US and Russia. Apart from the US, Russia and China, India too has worked out an ambitious plan to put astronauts in space by 2022.

Constantly improving manufacturing and new material technologies have remarkably reduced the cost of space launches. The pr

ivate US company Space X has successfully launched recoverable rockets, and its launch cost per kilogram payload has fallen below $2,000, one-ten

th that of a space shuttle launch. And for China and India, the cost of one rocket launch is less than $5,000 per kg.

Another major change helping space exploration is the advancement in 3D printing technology, which now allows astr

onauts to produce parts and components in the International Space Station and thus reduces the number of sup

ply vehicle launches. 3D printing will play a big role in the construction of a permanent space station on the moon.

These technological advancements have propelled a new wave of space fever ac

ross the world. While US President Donald Trump has reactivated the space ex

ploration program that aims to land humans on Mars by 2033, private space companies such as Space X and Blue Ori

gin have used advanced technologies to their full advantage to move ahead in the space race.

For China, building a permanent space station and a rocket launch platform on the moon will

be critical to advanced space exploration. Actually, China is moving closer to fulfilling that objective.

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The post by the Sina Weibo blogger claimed that one of Zha

i’s papers published in an academic journal, was uploaded to CNKI and the similarity score for the 2,783-word article was 40.4 percent.

Another post by the same blogger claimed that Zhai’s doctoral graduation dissertation

could not be found in the CNKI database, while all the graduation dissertations written by his classmates could be found there.

The posts stirred a heated debate among netizens, with many saying academic misconduct

was unfair to students who had worked hard to obtain a degree. They have called for strict rules to curb such behavior.

“For someone with a PhD, how could he not know what the CNKI is? And how could he have never used it for referencing academic works?” one netizen wrote.

“I was only joking when I said that I did not know what CNKI was,” Zhai wrote in response

to the post. “Will anyone believe me if I said that I do not know one plus one equals two?”

Zhai’s studio said on Friday that he obtained a PhD from the Beijing Film Academ

y in June, and all his academic papers and his dissertation were written by him under the guidance of supervisors.

He has met all graduation requirements from the academy and is willing to be held responsible for any academic misconduct, the studio said.

Peking University declined to comment when contacted by China Daily on Monday.

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sq m, Tiantongyuan includes five major communities with

subdistricts that were built in 2000. In the first three years of the century, the population quickly rose to more than 100,000.

The family of Beijing native Du Bo moved to Tiantongyuan in 2005 because at 5,600 yuan per sq m the area was still relatively cheap.

“Our old home in Haidian district was scheduled for urgent demolition, so we had to find another place to live,” the 26-year-old said.

Though the family would have preferred an apartment in the downtown, Du’s parents could not afford

to move to such an expensive area. The urgency of the situation meant the family of four, which included his grandfather, had no alt

ernative but to move to the 120-sq-m, three-bedroom apartment in Tiantongyuan.

“Dirty” and “chaotic” were Du’s first impressions of the neighborhood. Unlicensed traders bloc

ked the roads, meaning people could not park their cars, and feral cats and dogs often ap

peared on the streets. As a result, some people simply bought apartments to rent to tenants.

Du said he has heard that in a building near his tower block, one bedroom can accommodate eight people. “It’s like a dormitory at college,” he said.

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Air NZ flight to Shanghai turns back due to lack of lan

An Air New Zealand flight from Auckland to Shanghai had to turn back midway on Sunday morni

ng after the aircraft was found to be lacking the required permission to land in China’s mainland.

The Boeing 787-9, operating as Flight NZ289, took off from Au

kland, New Zealand, around midnight on Saturday local time but turned back after flying for a

bout 4.5 hours. The flight was scheduled to land at Pudong International Airport at 7:05am Beijing time.

In a short message sent to passengers later, the airline said the “aircraft operating the flight did not have reg

ulatory approval to land in Chinese mainland and was required to return to Auckland.”

The B787-9, the bigger version of the Dreamliner, with the registration ZK-NZQ, has been flying wit

h the airline for five months, but has never landed in the Chinese mainland, according to its flying records.

According to China’s civil aviation regulation, foreign carriers are required to

submit a list of the type, nationality and registration mark of aircraft sch

eduled to land in Chinese mainland to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) before operating the flight.

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The fourth opportunity is the Belt and Road Initiative, Liu

said. In 2018, trade in goods between China and countries within the re

gion covered by the BRI stood at $1.3 trillion, a 16.3 percent increase year-on-year. It w

as 3.7 percentage points higher than the growth rate of China’s overall external trade.

More than 13,000 China Railway Express trains have traveled along the BRI routes to date, l

inking cities in China with 49 cities in 15 European countries, including London, he added.

Rona Fairhead, the UK’s minister of state for trade and export promotion, said trade be

tween the two countries is worth more than 66 billion pounds ($86 billion) annually.

“UK exports to China continue to go from strength to strength,” she said. “In this n

ew year, I very much look forward to continuing our close level of engagement w

ith China. It is clear that there is still untapped demand for British goods and services in the Chinese market.”

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hina’s online payment platforms achieve record ‘red envelo

Digital transferring platforms run by China’s leading internet companies weathered mounting pressure from online transactions during the Chinese New Year c

elebrations with peak transfers reaching as high as 44,000 deals per second, domestic media reported on Tuesday.

As of late Monday, “red envelopes” worth 3.5 billion yuan was transacted through social media payment systems, according to Chinese media reports.

Sending “red envelops” stuffed with money through online payment tools to relative

s, co-workers and friends has become a new defining item for billions of Chinese during the Spring Festival.

The record occurred three seconds past midnight – the New Year’s Eve leading up to the Year

of Pig, Nets Union Clearing Corporation (NUCC) said, according to a report by chinanews.com on Tuesday.

The NUCC was founded by 45 shareholders, including 38 payment institutions, to en

sure  effective regulation and transaction security. The People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, is the largest shareholder.

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n suspect of Jolo blasts surrenders to Philippin

A main suspect in the deadly twin blasts hitting the southern Philippines late last month has surre

ndered to authorities, the chief of the Philippine National Police (PNP) said on Monday.

PNP Chief Director General Oscar Albayalde said the suspect, identified as Kamah Pae, and four others “performed individual role

s” in the church bombings that killed 22 and injured more than 100 others on Jan. 27 in Jolo in southern Sulu province.

Albayalde said Kamah, a student, turned himself in along with four others over the weekend in Jolo.

Multiple murder and multiple frustrated murder charges will be filed before the provincial prosecutor of Sulu on Monday, Albayalde added.

“The five surrendered due to the massive hot pursuit operations by troops from the Patikul Municip

al Police Station,” Albayalde told a news conference in Manila, adding that the five “performed individual roles in that incident.”

Albayalde said the five suspects belong to a group of Abu Sayyaf militants led by Hatib Hajan Sawadjaan, which is believed to be responsible for the blasts.

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Robert Aspell, president for Asia-Pacific of the US agricultural

nglomerate Cargill Inc, said the best way to solve trade issues is to talk to each other, communicating to find solutions.

“A large number of global companies have invested in China; it is a clear signal that Ch

ina is going to further open its markets, and many opportunities can be found in different sectors across the country,” he said.

Experts said the new progress, reached by collaborative efforts from both sides, can im

prove the outlook for both the US and Chinese economies and benefit the global economy and supply chain in 2019.

The Chinese and US economies are so inextricably intertwined that a blow to one would most li

kely make a dent in the other, too, said Bai Ming, deputy director at the International Market Institute of the

Beijing-based Chinese Academy of International Trade and Economic Cooperation.

This interdependence would exact far-reaching damage on the optimal resource allocation of both countries if trade tensions esc

alated, said Chen Wenling, chief economist at the China Center for Economic Exchanges. “The US needs C

hinese goods as much as China needs equipment and agricultural products from the US,” she said.

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