CHINA People's Daily Tonight: Podcast News (12/24/2018 Mon.)


People's Daily Tonight: Podcast News (12/24/2018 Mon.)

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21:00, December 24, 2018


This is People's Daily Tonight, your news source from China. 


Death toll from Indonesia tsunami rises to 281


The death toll from an Indonesian tsunami has risen past 280 with more than 1,000 people injured.

The tsunami struck Sunda Strait coastal areas along western Java and southern Sumatra islands without warning in the darkness Saturday night.

Disaster agency spokesman said the latest tolls Monday morning were 281 dead and 1,016 injured. The tally of missing is 57 but the numbers are expected to rise.

The waves that swept terrified people into the sea followed an eruption and possible landslide on Anak Krakatau, one of the world’s most infamous volcanic islands. (AP)


China's new law will guarantee foreign investors' interests


The protection of foreign-invested companies' intellectual property rights (IPR) should be reinforced, and administrative means cannot be used to enforce technology transfers, read the draft of China's new foreign investment law released on Sunday.

The legislation is expected to combine the country's three foreign investment laws into one to promote and protect foreign investment, providing legal guarantees for expanding the use of foreign capital in the new era.

During the weeklong session of the Standing Committee of the 13th National People's Congress, which began Sunday, the draft of the new foreign investment law was submitted for review.

The draft law confirms IPR protection for foreign inventors and foreign-funded companies. It also supports technological cooperation on a voluntary, commercial basis, saying that authorities cannot use administrative means to compel technology transfers. (Global Times)


Order for US military withdrawal from Syria signed: Pentagon


The order has been signed for the withdrawal of American troops from Syria, where they have been deployed to assist in the war against the Islamic State jihadist group, a US military spokesperson said on Sunday.

"The execute order for Syria has been signed," the spokesman said.

US President Donald Trump has declared the jihadist group "largely defeated," and made the surprise decision to bring US forces home -- a move that many US politicians and international allies fear is premature and would further destabilize the already devastated region. (AFP)


China to ban imports of waste foreign vessels for ship recycling: newspaper


China will ban imports of waste foreign vessels to protect the environment.

The country's ship-breaking yards, which have been tearing apart the world's retired vessels from both civil and military sectors, and turning them into piles of steel scrap bound for mills for repurposing, will henceforth focus only on domestic ships.

Many ship-breaking yards and nearby beaches were heavily polluted by heavy metals, oil and other toxic substances, said the report.

The new measures of banning imports were announced in April and will take effect on Dec. 31. They cover 32 types of solid waste imports, including ships, auto parts, stainless steel scrap, titanium and wood.(Xinhua)


US lawmakers home for Christmas, govt workers unpaid on shutdown Day 3


US lawmakers headed home for Christmas leaving the government partially shut for a third day Monday in an impasse over President Donald Trump's demand for border wall funding, a standoff which the White House budget director said may continue until a new Congress takes over in January.

The shutdown adds to uncertainties from Washington which have spooked global stock markets, and capped a tumultuous week in which Defense Secretary Jim Mattis resigned over Trump's foreign policies.

More than 400,000 federal employees are reporting to their jobs on Monday but won't get their salaries, while nearly 400,000 others "will be locked out of work with no pay," the American Federation of Government Employees union said.

About three-quarters of the government, including the military, is fully funded through September 2019 but the shutdown forced several other major agencies to cease operations from Saturday.(AP)


China's imports to surpass two trillion USD in 2018


China's total imports will likely exceed two trillion US dollars this year, setting a new record, a trade official said.

China lowered tariffs on an array of products from medicines to vehicles in 2018, with the general duty level down from 9.8 percent to 7.5 percent.

Customs data showed imports increased 14.6 percent year on year in the first 11 months, contributing more than 60 percent to foreign trade growth.

To continue the stable trend, the ministry pledged efforts to strengthen trade quality over the next year.

The second import expo scheduled for 2019 will create more opportunities for importers, and measures are in the pipeline to encourage imports of advanced technology, farm produce, consumer goods and services, the official said.(CGTN)


Thousands evacuated after 5.8-magnitude quake hits Tibet


More than 2,100 people have been evacuated after a 5.8-magnitude earthquake jolte Xigaze, southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, on Monday, local authorities said.

No casualties have been reported. Investigators found cracks in some rural houses and damage on some live-stock sheds in the county.

The local governments have prepared tents, quilts, coats, and medical supplies for the affected people.

Traffic and telecommunications in the region have remained undisturbed. (Xinhua)


And that's People's Daily Tonight. Thanks for joining us.

(Produced by Han Xiaomeng and Guo Yitong)

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