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News letter Issue No. 24
2009/11/10

Issue No. 24

     November 9, 2009

BETWEEN CHINA AND THE EU

On October 27, H.E. Ambassador Song Zhe, Head of the Mission of the People’s Republic of China to the European Union, met with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen. Both sides exchanged views on issues of common concerns.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso exchanged views on climate change and China-EU cooperation on November 2 during a telephone conversation. The premier specified six aspects China will give priority to in its next steps. That included integrating actions on climate change into its economic and social development plan, implementing and improving the National Climate Change Program, promoting the green economy, and reinforcing the comprehensive capability in coping with climate change. China is ready to work with the EU to push for a success of the Copenhagen conference and promote the comprehensive strategic partnership with the EU. In the telephone conversation, Barroso briefed Wen on the EU's position and proposals on climate change. Barroso said the EU hopes to enhance coordination and cooperation with China to make sure the Copenhagen conference produces positive outcomes, and expects to make joint efforts with China to push bilateral cooperation to a new level.

BETWEEN CHINA AND THE WORLD

The Fourth Ministerial Conference of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum (FOCAC) opened in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on November 8. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and African heads of state or government attended the opening ceremony of the two-day conference, with the theme of "deepening the new type of China-Africa strategic partnership for sustainable development." Mubarak, who chaired the opening ceremony, said in a speech that FOCAC is to establish a new stage of relations between China and Africa and a partnership for peace, security and development.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao announced eight new measures the Chinese government will take to strengthen China-Africa cooperation in the next three years. According to the eight new measures, China will help Africa build up financing capacity, and will provide 10 billion U.S. dollars in concessional loans to African countries and support Chinese financial institutions in setting up a special loan of 1 billion dollars for small- and medium-sized African businesses. For the heavily indebted countries and least developed countries in Africa having diplomatic relations with China, China would cancel their debts associated with interest-free government loans due to mature by the end of 2009. The measures are also committed to building clean energy projects in Africa, carrying out joint scientific and technological demonstration projects with Africa, training agricultural technology personnel for Africa and offering assistance on medical care, health, human resources development and education. To learn more, please go to http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2009-11/08/content_12411421.htm

The Fourth Ministerial Conference of the China-Africa Cooperation Forum (FOCAC) opened in the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Sunday.

The fourth ministerial meeting of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) opens in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Nov. 8, 2009.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao attended the 12th summit between ASEAN and China (10+1), the 12th summit between ASEAN and China, Japan and South Korea (10+3) and the fourth East Asia Summit from October 23 to 25.

During the 10+1 summit, participants reviewed their common efforts to combat the international financial crisis and meet other challenges in the past year or so, expressed their readiness to work together for common development and reached a wide-ranging consensus on ways to deepen their cooperation in an all-round way. Premier Wen made a six-point proposal for strengthening cooperation between China and ASEAN, which includes building an economic cooperation zone and boosting cooperation in such sectors as investment, agriculture, intellectual property rights, infrastructure construction and culture.

At the 10+3 summit, the leaders exchanged views on ways of tackling the global financial crisis and enhancing pragmatic cooperation. Premier Wen said countries within the ASEAN Plus Three mechanism should further promote integration, peace and prosperity in the region through increased cooperation in various areas.

On East Asia cooperation, Premier Wen proposed working together to build a East Asia Community in a step-by-step manner.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao (7th L) and other leaders pose for a group photo during the 12th summit between ASEAN and China, Japan and South Korea (10+3) in Hua Hin, Thailand, on Oct. 24, 2009.

WHAT’S NEW IN CHINA

China's gross domestic product (GDP) grew 7.7 percent year on year in the first three quarters of this year, the National Bureau of Statistics said at a press conference on October 22.

China is to maintain basic stability and continuity in the economic policies and RMB exchange rate to ensure a foreseeable prospect for its businesses. Minister of Commerce Chen Deming made the remarks on November 1. In the following months, China would maintain stability of the macro-economic policies, stick to the proactive fiscal policy and moderately easy monetary policy. Meanwhile, the RMB exchange rate should also maintain relatively stable so that domestic manufacturers and exporters can better predict and adjust to the market.

China's central government has officially approved the Shanghai Disneyland Project, the Shanghai municipal government announced on November 4. The park's planned area was estimated at 7 square km and the project is expected to cost 25 billion yuan (3.66 billion U.S. dollars).  Several big state-owned firms in Shanghai would form a joint venture with the Walt Disney Co. to invest in the project. Disney president and CEO Robert Iger said in a statement that China was one of the most dynamic, exciting and important countries in the world, and the approval marked "a very significant milestone" for the Walt Disney Company in China's mainland.

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