With UK politics in disarray, there’s still a risk the country

  will leave the European Union without a transitional deal to protect trade. The Ba

nk of England has said the fallout from that scenario would be worse than the 2008 financial crisis.

  The big Brexit slowdown

  The United Kingdom was the fastest growing G7 economy when voters went to the polls in 2016. E

mergency action by the Bank of England helped the UK economy avoid the recession that some had

predicted would follow a vote in favor of Brexit, and unemployment remains very low.

  But the country still fell toward the bottom of the G7 rank

ing. Economic growth has slumped from an annual pace of around 2% to less than 1% now.

  Investment by UK companies stalled after the referendum and then plunged 3.7% in 2018. Me

anwhile, the rest of the G7 has seen business investment grow around 6% a year since the vote.

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Sports participation, as part of all-around education, sho

uld be given a more prominent role on campus, whereas now acade

mic excellence seems to be the main priority in our country,” Yao told China Daily on Sun

day in Beijing during the annual session of the country’s top political advisory body.

“Building organized and accessible sports competitions with tailor-made programs and adequate facilities is the key to involv

ing as many students as possible,” said Yao, who is chairman of the Chinese Basketball Association.

At last year’s two sessions, he proposed implementation of a “m

ini basketball” program for younger students. It saw 10,000 participants registered with the CBA

sign up for some 15,000 teams that competed regularly in 192 cities across the country over the past year.

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Russian authorities may have wide latitude to restrict sp

  ech online, but it’s also worth remembering that the Yarovaya Law had a major impact on religious freedom in Russia.

  A 2018 State Department report noted that Russian authorities

“prosecuted individuals of many denomination

s for unauthorized missionary activity under the

amendments to antiterrorism laws passed in 2016, known as the Yarovaya Package. Polic

e conducted raids on the private homes and places of worship of religious minorities.

  Religious minorities said local authorities used the country’s anti-extremism l

aws to add to the list of banned religious texts. Local officials continued to prevent minority religi

ous organizations from obtaining land and denied them construction permits for houses of worship.”

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The space station’s core module and a Long March 5B are

under construction, the agency said, adding that it is also selecting and training astronauts for the mission.

According to government plans previously made public, China will start putting

together its first manned space station around 2020, when a Long March 5B will put the station’s core module into orbit.

Other components and astronauts will later be ferried to the core module to assemble the station.

The space station is expected to be built and become fully operational around 2022 and is set to operate for about 15 yea

rs, according to the China Academy of Space Technology, the contractor for the station’s development and construction.

In 2024, it will likely become the world’s only space station if t

he United States-led International Space Station is retired that year as planned.

chengduyidong.cn

Guizhou’s Fanjing Mountain named ‘most exciting destination’ for

Fanjing Mountain in Southwest China’s Guizhou province has been included as one of the 28 d

estinations and experiences for the year of 2019 by National Geographic Traveler magazine.

The only Chinese destination to be listed, together with Egypt’s Cairo, Canada’s Toronto and Vietnam’s H

oang Lien Son, the mountain is described as “a sacred Buddhist site and a place rewarding hiker with bizarre rock formations and above-the-

clouds views” by the magazine. Home to 382 vertebrate species including wild panda and clouded leopard, the nature rese

rve is also the habitat of the largest number of gray snub-nosed monkeys in the world, around 700.

The rich biodiversity also earned it a place on the list of UNES

CO World Heritage Site last year.China will continue the efforts to promote all-round ope

ning-up and foster new strengths in international economic cooperation and competition, Premier Li Keqiang said on Tu

esday when delivering the Government Work Report at the second session of the 13th National People’s Congress.

Li said China will open more sectors and improve the process of open

ing-up. The country will continue to promote opening-up based on flows of goods and facto

rs of production, and give greater emphasis to opening-up based on rules and related institutions, he said.

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Earlier this month, a container ship docked in Pyeongtae

  harbor, on the southwest coast of Seoul. On board were 51 containers of mixed waste that South Korean company Green SoKo had exported to the Philippines last year.

  The company had claimed the waste was recyclable plastic, but most of it was not in fact recyclable an

d had been strewn over a 45,000 square meter patch (almost 500,000 square feet) of Mindanao island.

  Locals discovered that the trash included household garbage, used diapers, empty ca

ns of ham, and washing machine parts. Protests by environmental group EcoWaste Coalition put pressure on the South Korean govern

ment to take back the trash.What that container ship brought back to Seoul, however, was only a fraction of the 290

,000 tons of waste which South Korean Customs estimates was illegally exported in 2018.

  A report released last month by the Ministry of Environment

blamed the problem on the lack of affordable alternatives for disposing of solid waste.

  ”The cost of incineration used to be $53 per ton and now it’s over $230. The waste comp

anies cannot recycle or incinerate (affordably), so the waste is left abandoned,” ministry officials said at a briefing.

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Bayer will continue to support green and digital developmen

German company Bayer’s agriculture division Bayer Crop Science in China and China’s National Ag

ricultural Technology Extension Service Center (NATESC) under the Ministry of Agriculture jointly lau

nched the Action Plan for Enhancing Green Development Capability in Beijing on Wednesday.

The plan, a large non-profit training project co-sponsored by Bayer and the NATESC, is an

important topic under the framework of Sino-German agricultural cooperation.

To respond to the needs of green and quality development in Chinese agriculture, it a

ims to build green development capacities among key players, such as local officials and tec

hnicians in agriculture, executives in new types of agribusinesses, serve organizations and lead in co-operatives.

The project will be implemented for five years from 2019, covering all provincial regions.

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In an interview with China Daily Website on Tuesday

 Jesus Madrazo, a member of Bayer’s executive leadership team and head of Agricultural Affai

rs and Sustainability for the Crop Science division of Bayer, said the company, sensing tremendous op

portunities in China, is constantly looking for opportunities to expand its operations in China.

“There is a broad recognition that China has made tremendous prog

ress in not only advancing food security, but also about the quality of what is grown, and gro

w it not only more but also better, better for the consumers and better for the environment.”

He said Bayer, having been operating in the Chinese market for more than 30 years, plans to be here for many decades to co

me to support the agricultural development and introduce the best products and technologies.

Bayer Crop Science Greater China Country Head Huang Weidong said China has bee

n vigorously supporting the development and upgrading of agricultural industry and opening the doo

r to new technologies, new business models, digital agriculture and digital-related applications.

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Sao Paulo orchestra makes debut in ChinaState Symphony

The Sao Paulo State Symphony Orchestra of Brazil, the first South American symphony to t

our China, will hold a concert at the Shanghai Grand Theatre on the night of Valentine’s Day.

The event also marked the first time the symphony’s female conductor Marin Alsop is involved in a performance in China.

Alsop, who is one of the most prominent students of the late US musician Leonard Bernstein, introduced the symphony’s m

usic style as “accessible with folk elements” and highly rhythmic, which is “a hallmark of the Brazilian music”.
The

concert program, she added, is perfect for Valentine’s Day as it “begins with lots of fire and ends with lots of romance”.

The concert opened with Bernstein’s Candide Overture, followed by works from Brazilian composer Heit

or Villa-Lobos and Argentine Alberto Ginastera. The second part featured Sheherazade by Russian artist Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

Following its China premiere in Shanghai, Alsop and the Sao Pa

ulo symphony will go on to play in Jinan of Shandong province, Beijing and Hong Ko

ng, where the company will feature as the opening performance for the Hong Kong Arts Festival on Feb 21.

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Innovation in science and technology bolsters Guangdong’s e

Despite China’s ongoing trade war with the United States, Guangdong province, an economic powerhouse, has found new ways to attain sustainable economic development.

In addition to the construction of the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area, which helped the province maintain its strong growth momentum, inn

ovation in science and technology was the key to sustainable economic growth last year, Wang Ruijun, director-general of

the provincial Department of Science and Technology, told local media recently.

Wang said the provincial government spared no effort to promote innovation after President X

i Jinping urged Guangdong to further develop its innovative industries during last year’s tw

o sessions – the annual meetings of China’s top legislature and advisory body.

Wang said Guangdong has invested more than 4 billion yuan ($593 million) to help build seven provi

ncial-level laboratories and 72 other major scientific research projects to support economic development.

It has also actively integrated its scientific and technological development into the country’s de

velopment plan for major scientific and technological projects, while building the Guangdong-H

ong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Innovation Center of Science and Technology, he said.

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