2024

Future sight: tech shines at 2024 Beijing auto show

This year’s Beijing International Automotive Exhibition, also known as Auto China 2024, has a lot of highlights and many new models. Chinese-branded carmakers have rolled out a lot of surprises, showing a strong strength on the electric and intelligent tracks. What new cars are the major original equipment manufacturers bringing to this year’s show? Let’s check it out.

Commercial competition to be regulated in athletics races

He Jie crosses the finish line of Beijing Half Marathon on April 14, 2024. Photo: VCG

He Jie crosses the finish line of Beijing Half Marathon on April 14, 2024. Photo: VCG

Following recent controversies of race rigging surrounding the 2024 Beijing Half Marathon, the Chinese Athletics Association (CAA) announced plans to introduce guidelines aimed at standardizing commercial competition in races.

The decision was made during a meeting on Tuesday, according to a post by the official WeChat account of CAA. 

“Since the spring of 2024, road running events have been held across the country, sparking a surge in participation among the masses. Overall, the road running events that have taken place have operated smoothly, but they have also exposed issues in event organization and management, attracting widespread attention from society,” said the post.

At the Beijing Half Marathon held on Sunday, the champion was accused of benefiting from staged competition involving African runners. Viral footage online shows that He Jie was behind the three African runners down the final stretch. Instead of sprinting to the finish line, the three African contenders were seen to look back and wave He out in front while appearing to slow down. He, the national marathon record holder, eventually overtook them and won the race by one second.

The CAA will roll out guidelines as soon as possible to regulate commercial competition in road races and enhance market standardization.

Additionally, other measures will be taken, including stricter vetting of race proposals, enhanced on-site inspections, and improved regulatory mechanisms. The association will also increase risk assessment for races and develop targeted contingency plans accordingly, it said.

The association also designated 2024, 2025 and 2026 as years focused on enhancing the quality of races, with initiatives on institutional improvements, competition organization standards, enhanced supervision, intensified training, medical security and educational outreach. 

Local authorities are urged to ensure the safety and integrity of races, with a commitment to anti-doping measures and upholding fair play, said the post.

“National fitness has become a national strategy in China, within the strategic context of building a strong sports nation. Running, unlike other sports requiring specialized skills, has a low entry barrier. This accessibility has propelled running to become one of the most widely participated in sports, with countless competitions held across the country every weekend,” said Luo Le, a sports teacher from the Beijing University of Chemical Technology.

Yet, the popularity of marathon also brings forth certain challenges, some of which could be preventable with proper management. To address these problems, it’s crucial for organizers to refine regulations and ensure comprehensive oversight, Luo added. 

In Luo’s view, the guidelines aim to underscore the importance of maintaining standards while promoting inclusivity. 

‘Choosing China means choosing opportunities, and investing in China means investing in the future’: MOFCOM

Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc, exchanges business cards with participants at the China Development Forum 2024 in Beijing, on March 24, 2024. About 400 people, including experts, entrepreneurs, government officials and representatives of international organizations, attended the opening ceremony of the forum. Photo: VCG

Tim Cook, chief executive officer of Apple Inc, exchanges business cards with participants at the China Development Forum 2024 in Beijing, on March 24, 2024. About 400 people, including experts, entrepreneurs, government officials and representatives of international organizations, attended the opening ceremony of the forum. Photo: VCG

 

“Choosing China means choosing opportunities,” He Yadong, spokesperson of Ministry of Commerce (MOFOCM) said on Thursday, when asked about the recent surge of visits by global CEOs to the country.

The spokesperson said China welcomes multinational companies to actively participate in Chinese market for further development.

The remarks came amid the background as China hosts a series of high-level events this week, attracting a good number of global CEOs. Senior officials of MOFOM also met with top executives from over 20 multinational companies such as Apple, Qualcomm and Mercedes-Benz. These multinational companies are of medicine, automobiles, food, finance, cosmetics, electronic information, chemical industry and energy. 

Multinationals from all walks of life visit China intensively to feel the “spring vigor” of China’s economic recovery, which demonstrates the “strong magnetic attraction” of the Chinese market, the spokesperson said. 

China welcomes multinational companies to actively participate in the construction of a modern industrial system in China for greater inclusive development, He said. 

Executives of multinational companies have expressed their optimism of the Chinese market and vowed to continue to invest in China, He said, citing the example of Apple which will continue to increase its investment in R&D and augment its supply chain in China, and the German chemical company Wacker will continue to invest in China and support the green and low-carbon transformation of traditional industries.

Jean-Pascal Tricoire, the Chairman of Schneider Electric, said in a forum held on Monday that the company will fully leverage their digital advantages and sustainable experience and deepen the integration of digital and real industries, accelerate the dual transformation of digitalization and decarbonization, and work with Chinese partners to foster new quality productive forces.

The company said the supply chain in China has increased its overall efficiency by 8-10 percent year by year, and its overall energy consumption decreased by 13 percent compared to 2019 with the deployment of advanced digital systems and artificial intelligence technology.

Data from MOFCOM showed that in the first two months of 2024, the number of newly established foreign-invested enterprises increased by 34.9 percent to 7,160 in China.

China continues to connect the world with a higher level of opening-up. “Choosing China means choosing opportunities, and investing in China means investing in the future,” He noted.

Global Times