China sends four high-resolution satellites into space

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China launched a Long March-2D rocket on Monday, sending four satellites of the Beijing-3C satellite constellation into designated orbits. 

The rocket lifted off 11:06 a.m. from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China’s Shanxi Province. 

This was the 523rd flight mission of the Long March rocket series. Previously, the Long March-2D carrier rocket sent Beijing-3A and Beijing-3B satellites into orbit. 

A Long March-2D rocket carrying four satellites blasts off from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China’s Shanxi Province, May 20, 2024. /CMG

A Long March-2D rocket carrying four satellites blasts off from the Taiyuan Satellite Launch Center in north China’s Shanxi Province, May 20, 2024. /CMG

Developed by the Fifth Academy of the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, the Beijing-3C constellation is a fleet of high-resolution optical remote sensing satellites. 

These satellites capture detailed images of Earth, offering valuable data for various applications. Once operational, the four satellites will work together in a synchronized network, providing crucial support in areas like land and resource management, agricultural surveys, environmental monitoring and comprehensive urban planning.

China unveils guideline to promote development of smart cities

An illustration of the cityscape of Shanghai Municipality, east China. /CFP

An illustration of the cityscape of Shanghai Municipality, east China. /CFP

China on Monday unveiled a guideline on promoting the development of smart cities and urban digital transformation to make urban management smarter.

By 2027, China expects to see significant progress in the digital transformation of urban areas, and to have built a number of livable, resilient and smart cities, according to the document released by the national data bureau and several other government departments.

The guideline aims to deepen integration between digital technologies and the economy, governance and life via urban development, combine data into the entire development cycle of the cities, and coordinate technical progress and institutional innovation, said Chen Ronghui, deputy head of the national data bureau.

“To facilitate the high-quality development, high-efficiency governance and high-quality life in urban areas, the integration and development of data will be incorporated into the entire urban digital transformation process,” said Chen.

Wu Xiaoning, another official with the bureau, said the across-the-board digital transformation will involve all aspects of urban development such as urban planning, construction, management, service and operation.

To promote such transformation, efforts will be made to establish a platform for urban digitization, improve digital infrastructure, and make institutional innovations to adapt to the demands of digital urban management, according to Wu.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency

Siemens Energy CEO: There can be no energy transition without China

A 2,000-tonne offshore self-propelled wind turbine installation platform in east China’s Nantong City, Jiangsu Province, May 18, 2024. /China Railway Construction Bridge Engineering Bureau Group Co., Ltd

A 2,000-tonne offshore self-propelled wind turbine installation platform in east China’s Nantong City, Jiangsu Province, May 18, 2024. /China Railway Construction Bridge Engineering Bureau Group Co., Ltd

Energy transition without China does not work, Christian Bruch, chief executive officer (CEO) of Siemens Energy, told reporters this week, as he stressed that trying to build a wind turbine without any Chinese supply in Europe will be close to impossible.

“The last thing I would do is to advocate something like departing or de-risking. We have a connectivity between the two regions that is fruitful and unavoidable,” Bruch was quoted as saying by Reuters on Friday.

The CEO made the remarks as the European Union initiated last month subsidy investigations into Chinese wind turbine suppliers, the fourth probe targeting Chinese firms in just two months.

The manufacturing of wind turbines mainly relies on materials from China, most notably rare earths and permanent magnets, Reuters reported.

A recording light of a TV camera flashes red as Siemens Energy CEO Christian Bruch addresses the annual results news conference in Munich, Germany, November 15, 2023. /Reuters

A recording light of a TV camera flashes red as Siemens Energy CEO Christian Bruch addresses the annual results news conference in Munich, Germany, November 15, 2023. /Reuters

“Bruch’s comments also indicate a divide between Germany’s government, which has suggested companies cut their relative exposure to China, and the leaders of companies such as Volkswagen and BASF, which have increased their engagement,” said the report.

There has to be a middle ground between full-on protectionism like in the United States and a free market, argued Bruch.

“I’m not in favor of blocking the European market. But I think we still need clear rules in terms of how companies are financed, where do they get guarantees from and what do they pay for it,” he said.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency

Bulgarian visitors pick tea in Ningbo

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

A group of Bulgarian visitors take part in a tea-picking and tasting activity at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province on May 20, 2024. /Photo provided to CGTN

Agricultural tourism is on the rise across China. To mark International Tea Day which falls on May 21, a group of Bulgarian visitors took part in a tea-picking and tasting event at a tea garden near Dongqian Lake in Ningbo City, Zhejiang Province.

Simeon Petrov Vasilev, a 54-year-old participant with a long love of tea, said he has been enjoying different kinds of tea for 40 years. “It’s amazing that the green tea in China needs only a few seconds of brewing to bring out such aromatic flavors,” he said, as compared to the tea from Bulgaria.

A stroll around historical Kuliang, Fuzhou

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Kuliang in eastern Fuzhou, Fujian Province is a pleasant summer resort with green mountains, lush vegetation, and fresh air. It became a haven where both locals and foreigners congregated during the warmer months. Kuliang has seen generations of people strive to promote friendly exchanges and carry on international relations through the years. Take a walk around Kuliang with Rachel to see the summer resort up close and the historic buildings that still stand there today.

We are seeing a rise in anti-imperialist consciousness

Police clear encampment as they crack down on students protesting against the US' policy in the Israel-Palestine conflict, at the University of California, in Irvine, California on May 15, 2024. Photo: VCG

Police clear encampment as they crack down on students protesting against the US’ policy in the Israel-Palestine conflict, at the University of California, in Irvine, California on May 15, 2024. Photo: VCG

Editor’s Note:

As the Israel-Palestine conflict continues, pro-Palestine student protests on US campuses are calling attention to US policies in the region and challenging university administrators to divest. Why such protests erupt from the political spectrum to university students? What does it show about US policy and US image? Global Times (
GT) reporter Wang Wenwen talked to Jason Cohen (
Cohen) from City University of New York and student advisor Brandon Gonzalez (
Gonzalez) over these issues.

GT: Why do you participate in the encampment? 

Cohen: As part of the Gaza consolidating campaigns, what we aimed to achieve was to push the university to recognize the rights of Palestinian nationals and the legitimacy of the Palestinian national struggle. Because at my university, the head wouldn’t even say the word Palestine. All he uses is Hamas or Gaza. We have been just protesting and protesting and there’s been no movement at all by the administration. All they’ve done is send more cops at us, whether on the university grounds or in just the public streets. The other goal is to force them to divest from companies that make profit from expansion of Israeli settler colonialism and kill Palestinians, and also to disconnect our university from all imperialism of the US. We also called for the end of the CIA being on campus, because it’s all part of the same struggle. 

Gonzalez: There are a lot of us who are ready and willing to pull those funds that we provide those schools until they disclose where their money is going, essentially divest from the war machine and imperial aggression in the world and divest from the sort of the projects that are consistently being built in our universities where they’re funding and creating programming for whether it’s imperial aggression in East Asia, in the Middle East and in South China Sea. We’re trying our best to disclose that information – where those funds are going and where they come from, and following up with their escalation tactics and with these escalation tactics, we’re hoping that we’re just hoping for the best in that strategy and a free, liberated Palestine.

At least with the South China Sea, the imperialist aggression of the West, specifically the US and its hegemonic partners in the region who have positioned themselves as the sole champions of human rights and world democracy. But the US is just a global machine, a global police force that is consistently hounding and brutalizing and bombing and slaughtering civilians, whether it was during the Korean War militarizing that peninsula or militarizing the strait between Taiwan and Chinese mainland or militarizing borders at our southern border with Mexico. 

All of these are inherently violent and imperialist in every sense of the word. It’s not an exaggeration. Even before the start of the War on Terror, but specifically with the War on Terror, the way that we’ve surveilled our own civilians who are Muslim, Arab black or Arab civilians has just shown that the brutality that we detest globally is the same brutality and the same tactics we use here at home and abroad. 

So with that contradiction, it’s up to us as students and as people here in the imperial core to call that out, shame that and demand an end to a complete cessation of imperialist aggression. Specifically in the case of China with the tariffs that this government has imposed is an aggressive act, just as its aggressive acts against Russia in the Ukraine war, and its aggressive acts in funding and arming Israel and its brutality against Palestinians even before October 7 but since 1948, the inception of the Zionist Entity.  

GT: What do you think of the US policy toward Israel and the Middle East?

Cohen: The US supports Israel because Israel acts as a beachhead in the Middle East for imperialism and destabilizes the Iraqi, Iranian and other progressive governments that are trying to break away from the unipolar US world. 

The US policy in the Middle East has completely failed. Maybe for the US itself and the bourgeoisie, it has shown a lot of profits. But overall, it is a dying policy, because no matter what the US can continue using its drones to either attack Yemen, or to continuously try and subvert other states using color evolution tactics, we are seeing a rise in anti-imperialist consciousness, not just in Palestine, but even throughout Jordan, Saudi Arabia and so on, and that the people are supporting the axis of resistance and the governments that will protect them and will lead to a separate development, not necessarily constructed by US interests.

GT: We have seen some US officials resign because of the US policy of Israel. And now this protest wave has spread to the students. What do you think of this trend from politicians to students? 

Cohen: I think it reflects that within the US, there is a definite change in consciousness and a definitely change in our knowledge of what the real basis of US policy and what so-called US democracy has historically and contemporarily brought to the world. It shows that the Palestine solidarity movement on the ground, no matter what the oppression has been and the repression by the state apparatus has been, we are actually kind of winning in the media war and showing that the Palestinian national struggle is a moral and legitimate struggle. I think many in the US have seen it.

Our movement has shaken the US image on the world stage. We’re always supposed to have those bourgeois democratic rights, free speech, free demonstrations, and free press. The US always comes out with the ridiculous words that “we need to protect the rest of the world for freedom and democracy.” How can you continue to claim that and then be telling to Israel that we’ll give you more weapons?

Gonzalez: I definitely think it has to do with the class consciousness that was being built in 2020 with George Floyd. And then even prior to that with the recession, when we saw the Occupy Wall Street movement. All of these things happen not just in a bubble, but are cyclical. 

And we have to thank our predecessors for being bold enough and brash enough to denounce our violence, whether it’s Vietnam, whether it’s the bombing of Cambodia and Laos, any of these conflicts that we’ve been engaged with even before, when we decided to become the global police and the global hegemony. It’s our moral obligation as working people of this country to denounce that violence and terror that’s used with our money. Imperial aggression is no longer going to be accepted. The US is not a moral nation and has never been an immoral nation since its inception. 

GT: How does the global response to the Russia-Ukraine conflict and the Israel-Palestine conflict contribute to building multipolarity of the world?

Gonzalez: This trend of building multipolarity is exactly what we as the Global North need. The imperial core here, us in the belly of the beast, especially here in New York, being in the financial capital, it is our obligation to support and build that multipolar world. The anti-imperialist movement and the anti-war movement isn’t necessarily a call for continuing of the same singular peace of the US being the main power on the stage, but it’s to incorporate other nations and making sure that we have equitable infrastructure with each other and everything is equitable across the border and that the US isn’t the sole beneficiary of everything and anything as it relates to capital, and that we’re sharing in this global market, not global market in terms of economics, but global market in terms of just us as human beings like that internationalist approach to each other and humanity.

Reported Japan-ASEAN ‘EV partnership’ unlikely to impact Chinese investment and sales in the region: experts

EV Photo:VCG

EV Photo:VCG

Japan’s reported plan to cooperate with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) to develop a strategy for auto production in the region, purportedly aimed at “countering China’s electric vehicles (EV),” is unlikely to affect Chinese EV exports to the region, Chinese industry experts said.

The remarks came as Nikkei Asia reported on Monday that Japan and ASEAN are planning to create their first joint strategy on auto production and sales in Southeast Asia, as Chinese EVs become increasingly popular there.

The two sides aim to draw up an interim joint strategy through 2035 when their economic ministers meet as early as September, according to the report. The strategy is reportedly to include cooperation in various sectors including personnel training and de-carbonization in production.

The Nikkei Asia report did not clarify how the strategy could “counter” Chinese EVs, nor identify the source of its report.

Chinese experts said that although the authenticity of the reported strategy remains unknown, there is a possibility that Japan may aim for enhanced collaboration with ASEAN nations in the automobile sector, potentially including the EV segment, to broaden their presence in the thriving market.

Japan has identified new-energy vehicles as one of its keys for future industry development and aims to build up its competitiveness in the ASEAN market, which has a significant potential for green development, Qian Feng, director of the research department at the National Strategy Institute at Tsinghua University, told the Global Times on Monday.

However, since there is no concrete evidence proving the reported partnership between Japan and ASEAN, the possible effect remains to be seen, Qian said.

“Whatever the circumstances, it is believed that ASEAN countries will avoid taking sides, and instead, strive to maintain a relatively balanced position in a tactful manner,” Qian said.

The sales of Japanese cars have been taking a dominant position in Southeast Asian region, but the situation has now changed as green transformation is gaining pace in the region.

In a separated report by Nikkei Asia in February, Thailand’s total sales of passenger cars and commercial vehicles in 2023 reached 775,780 units, with Chinese car companies’ share reaching 11 percent, increasing to 2.2 times that of the previous year, while the market share of Japanese cars dropped by 8 percentage points to 78 percent.

While one cannot rule out that Japan, in collaboration with ASEAN, could seek to strengthen its foothold in EV sector, the likelihood of using this initiative to constrain the development of Chinese EVs in the region is minimal, given the significant market position of Chinese EV companies there, with extensive investment and industrial cooperation already in place, Cui Dongshu, secretary-general of the China Passenger Car Association, told the Global Times on Monday.

“It is highly unlikely that ASEAN would impose restrictions on Chinese EVs,” Cui said.

Global Times

‘Lai-style Taiwan independence’ agenda is a dead-end: Global Times editorial

DPP candidate Lai Ching-te. Photo: VCG

Lai Ching-te Photo: VCG

On May 20, Lai Ching-te assumed the role of Taiwan region’s new leader and delivered his inaugural speech. Lai shamelessly stated in his speech that “the Republic of China Taiwan is a sovereign, independent nation” and “the Republic of China and the People’s Republic of China are not subordinate to each other,” spewing various “Taiwan independence” fallacies and hostile provocations against the Chinese mainland, once again exposing his stubborn nature as “a worker for Taiwan independence.” This speech can be described as a blatant “Taiwan independence manifesto” and “a declaration of harm to Taiwan.” It is extremely dangerous, and the Taiwan compatriots should be particularly vigilant and united in opposition.

We noticed that in this speech, the term “democracy” was mentioned 31 times, and “peace” 21 times, which precisely exposes the anxiety of the DPP authorities – they are well aware that what they are doing now is pushing Taiwan into a dangerous pit of war and danger, hence desperately using “democracy” as a fig leaf and talisman to cover themselves. It is clear to all discerning eyes that the so-called “democracy” is nothing but inferior makeup smeared on the face of “Taiwan independence,” unable to conceal its true face of “seeking independence by relying on foreign support and by force.”

In the positioning of cross-Straits relations, Lai boldly defines the two sides of the straits as “two countries,” listing “Taiwan,” “Republic of China Taiwan,” and “Republic of China” as so-called “national names,” further advancing on the “one China, one Taiwan” path of “Taiwan independence.” This blatant “two-state theory” cannot change the fact that Taiwan is only a part of China, nor can it stop the historical trend of reunification of the motherland. Its only effect is to exacerbate the tension in the Taiwan Straits and make Taiwan society pay a high price for the reckless gamble of “Taiwan independence.”

While treating compatriots from the mainland as “foreigners,” Lai in his speech regards Western anti-China forces as “family members,” throughout the speech filled with servility and begging for mercy from Western anti-China forces, which is very shameful. In order to gain the support of Western anti-China forces, he claims that “the world greeting a new Taiwan”, Taiwan is “an important link in the global chain of democracies,” ” Taiwan is strategically positioned in the first island chain,” and so on. These remarks of selling out Taiwan treat the hard-earned social achievements and wealth accumulated by the Taiwan residents for decades as offerings to anti-China forces in the West, reducing Taiwan to a pawn of the US and giving it the appearance of “unworthy descendants.”

Even more dangerous is the subtle manifestation of the arrogant ambition of “seeking independence by force” in his speech. On the one hand, Lai echoes the fallacies of certain Western countries, smearing the mainland as a “threat”; on the other hand, he attempts to indoctrinate the people in Taiwan into cannon fodder for “Taiwan independence,” openly advocating for raising the citizens’ “defense awareness,” fully exposing the sinister intention of sacrificing innocent people on the island for the selfish desire of “Taiwan independence.”

In the past, members of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) had a bad habit: Whenever they found themselves in a political dead end, such as being caught in corruption scandals or having their sex scandals exposed, they would play the “Taiwan independence card” to stay afloat. Unexpectedly, Lai, who has just taken office, is resorting to the “Taiwan independence card” right from the start of his tenure. However, the mainstream public opinion on the island is to pursue peace instead of war, development instead of decline, communication instead of separation, and cooperation instead of confrontation. This is not only the common voice of the 23 million people in Taiwan, but also the strong resonance of over 1.4 billion Chinese people.

The motherland must be unified, and it will inevitably be unified. Regardless of changes in the situation on the island or who holds power, it cannot change the fact that both sides of the Straits belong to one China, nor can it change the fundamental pattern and direction of cross-Straits relations, or block the historical trend of the eventual reunification of the motherland.

“Lai-style Taiwan independence” will only exacerbate the confrontation and instability across the Straits, inevitably leading to self-overestimation and self-destruction.

Special message to ‘CGTN TeaFest’ from Bollywood singer and composer Kishor Jawade

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We have a special message from Bollywood singer and composer Kishor Jawade for the upcoming “CGTN TeaFest” livestream event. Mark your calendars and join the conversation on the 5th International Tea Day, May 21. Let’s tea-up together and discover how tea, this beloved beverage, has become a universal symbol, uniting cultures from around the world, and experience every sip as a journey of sensory delight and cultural discovery.