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Xi orders armed forces to enhance combat readiness
President Xi Jinping Friday ordered the Chinese armed forces to enhance their combat readiness from a new starting point and open new ground for developing a strong military.
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and chairman of the Central Military Commission (CMC), made the instruction at a CMC meeting held in Beijing.
"The world is facing a period of major changes never seen in a century, and China is still in an important period of strategic opportunity for development," he said, warning that various risks and challenges were on the rise.
The entire armed forces should have a correct understanding of China's security and development trends, enhance their awareness of danger, crisis and war, and make solid efforts on combat preparations in order to accomplish the tasks assigned by the Party and the people, Xi said. (Xinhua)
China will have declining population around 2028: report
A new report predicts that China will see a population decline around 2028.
Since 2010, the number of Chinese people aged 65 and above has increased by 83.2 million, with an average annual growth of 2.08 million. However, the population under the age of 15 has decreased by 90.17 million, with an average reduction of 2.25 million per year, said the report released by the Institute of Population and Labor Economics under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences in Beijing.
The report also said that China would have a shrinking labor population. In 2017, the country's working-age population (16 to 64) had declined by 5.78 million. (Xinhua)
China slams new US travel advisory
China has slammed a new travel advisory by the US while also saying it hopes that Washington will do more to promote mutual trust and exchange between the two countries in future, China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Lu Kang said Friday.
The remarks came after the US State Department updated a travel advisory warning, saying visitors to China are at risk of the Chinese government imposing exit bans to stop them from leaving the country.
"China always welcomes foreign citizens, including US citizens, to visit and protects their security and legal rights, including freedom of entry and exit," Lu said.
Regarding a very slight number of foreigners suspected of violating laws and committing crimes in China, the Chinese authorities have always impartially handled cases in accordance with the law, and safeguarded their legal rights and interests, he added. (People's Daily app)
US selecting venue for second Kim-Trump meeting: report
Washington is considering sites for the expected second summit with Pyongyang, with Switzerland excluded for logistical reasons, US media reported.
So far, US officials have not formally shared these locations with Pyongyang, according to reports.
President Trump said on Wednesday that he expected his second encounter with Kim in the "not-too-distant future." He also said he had received a "great" letter from North Korea’s leader. (Xinhua - People's Daily app)
Japan to announce new era name on April 1
Japan will announce its new era name on April 1, one month before the abdication of Emperor Akihito, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said at a New Year's press conference in Ise on Friday.
The new "genko," which means "era name," will be signed off at a Cabinet meeting on April 1 before the emperor abdicates on April 30 and Crown Prince Naruhito ascends the imperial throne on May 1, Abe said.
Emperor Akihito, in a rare nationally-televised address in August 2016, expressed his desire to relinquish his duties as emperor owing to concerns about his age, health and ability to carry out his formal duties. (China Plus)
Shanghai-London stock link may launch later in January
The earliest time for the launch of the long-awaited Shanghai-London Stock Connect scheme might be the second half of this month, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Under the scheme, Chinese companies listed in the A-share market will be able to raise money in London, while British companies can be purchased by Chinese investors through the scheme, but they cannot raise fresh funds.
A number of companies listed in the separate markets have expressed their interest in joining the scheme, but Huatai and HSBC might be the only two of the very first batch of companies expected to be traded after the scheme goes into operation, according to people involved in the preparations. (China Daily)
Ford recalls over 953,000 vehicles to replace inflators
Ford is recalling more than 953,000 vehicles worldwide to replace Takata passenger air bag inflators that can explode and hurl shrapnel.
The move includes 782,000 vehicles in the US and is part of the largest series of recalls in US history.
Takata uses the chemical ammonium nitrate to create an explosion to inflate air bags. But it can deteriorate over time due to heat and humidity and explode with too much force, blowing apart a metal canister designed to contain the explosion. (AP)
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And now for the Question of the Day:
Pro Rata, what fruit contains the highest number of calories and protein?
Today's quote is from American dramatist Wilson Mizner (1876-1933).
"To profit from good advice requires more wisdom than to give it."
(Produced by Nancy Yan Xu, Ryan Yaoran Yu, Lance Crayon, Brian Lowe, Elaine Yue Lin, and Da Hang.)