Amazon to end local 3rd-party sales in Chinaon offices in Ne

US-based tech giant Amazon.com Inc plans to shut down its third-party seller services on its Chinese online marketplace

in July, as it shifts its focus to offering Chinese mainland consumers overseas products rather than goods from local sellers.

Starting July 18, customers logging in to Amazon’s Chinese web portal will only see a selec

tion of goods from its global store, rather than products from local third-party sellers.

Amazon said it will keep running its other businesses in China, inclu

ding the cross-border shopping business Amazon Global Store; Global Selling, which helps Chin

ese merchants sell products abroad; its cloud service platform Amazon Web Services; and Kindle e-book devices and content.

“Over the past few years, we have been evolving our China online retail business to increasingly

emphasize cross-border sales, and in return we’ve seen a very strong response from Chinese customers.

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Lu made the remarks in response to recent media repo

 reports that India decided not to send a delegation to the second Belt and Road Forum for Internati

onal Cooperation later this month in Beijing. The reports said the initiative undermines the South Asia

n nation’s sovereignty via the BRI-related China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.

Lu said that, “If this decision about whether to participate in building the Belt and Road

was possibly made through a misunderstanding”, China firmly and sincerely advances the constr

uction of the Belt and Road on the basis of consultation and contribution for shared benefits.

He added that the initiative is open to all parties that are inter

ested in and willing to join in win-win cooperation.

It will not exclude any party, he said, adding that China is willin

g to wait if relevant parties need more time to consider their participation.

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yers do need their staff to work extra hours to meet pro

 deadlines or fulfill other tasks, they can ask them to work overtime – but not than 36 hours a month and only after consulti

ng and reaching an agreement with the labor union and the workers. More important, empl

oyers have to pay at least 1.5 times the usual salary to the employees for overtime work.

This is to protect the rights, interests and health of the workers.

Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba Group, has added fuel to the debate, by saying that empl

oyees who get the “opportunity” to work according the “996” schedule are the luc

ky ones, because in many companies employees don’t get the chance to work long hours.

But the fact is, if employers do not meet the two essential requiremen

ts to make employees work overtime – consulting wo

rkers and restricting the amount of extra work – and force the “996” schedule o

n their workers and make them work for more than 60 hours a week, they violate the Labor Law.

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Shanghai aims to rev up car sales with trade-in subsidies

The city of Shanghai has become the first local government to answer the call of the central gove

rnment to promote automobile consumption by providing subsidies, since 10 mi

nistries and commissions of the country released six major methods of promoting car sales in January.

The official WeChat account of the Shanghai Municipal Government announced yesterday it will launch a car trade-i

n program, encouraging car owners to trade in their vehicles for new gas-powered cars complying with State-VI emi

ssions standards or new energy vehicles, according to a report by the 21st Century Business Herald.

The government will provide a subsidy of 10,000 yuan ($1,489) for a trade-in gas-powered

vehicle and 15,000 yuan for a trade-in new energy vehicle, the announcement said.

China’s automobile market saw a sales decline in 2018 for the first time

in 28 years, with passenger vehicle sales slumping for 10 consecutive months from last y

ear to March, according to the China Passenger Car Association. As the central government halved subsidies for new energy

vehicles this year, the promotion of car consumption depends more on local governments and enterprises.

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hina to ease permanent residency requirements in lar

China said Monday it will ease the requirements for permanent residency in many large cities as part of its new urbanization push.

Restrictions on permanent residence permits should be scrapped in cities with populatio

ns between 1 million and 3 million, according to a document outlining key urbanization tasks this year release

d by the National Development and Reform Commission, the country’s top economic planner.

For cities with populations of 3 million to 5 million, the qualifications for such permits should be “fully relaxed,” and the restrictions

for certain key groups of people to get such permits should be removed, the document said.

Previously, the country has already gradually abolished permanent residency restrictions in

small and medium-sized cities and towns with populations below 1 million.

The NDRC document also demanded cities with populations above 5

million to improve their policies and drastically expand the scale of permanent residency.

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In Yangcao Village, Ma pushed for the establishment of a

 poverty-reduction workshop, where over 40 women from poor families found jobs. They draw on their fine craftsmanship and hand

made items such as wallets, insoles and pillowcases, which sell at places as far away as Beijing and Shanghai.

In December 2018, Shangyan and Yangcao were removed from the list of poverty-strike

n villages with eight other villages of Huanghua Township, which means poverty had dropped to 3 percent and

below, with all impoverished population included in the national basic medical insurance scheme.

Ma died about a year after she was diagnosed with lymph cancer by a Beijing-based hospital in May 2017.

Even during chemotherapy, she often thought about poverty relief work, and after five months treatment, she returned to her office.

The mountainous Guyuan City, where Huanghua Township is located, is one of the sites whe

re the Workers’ and Peasants’ Red Army of the Communist Party of China arrived during the epic Long

March from 1934 to 1936, which had seen a large number of officers and soldiers killed or injured.

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Nearly 3.4 billion trips were made on Chinese rail line

 last year. Every day, an average of 5.5 million people use the nation’

s high-speed trains, accounting for nearly 60 percent of daily users of the country’s rail network.

The State-owned rail car manufacturer CRRC Corp, the world’s largest train maker, had sta

rted developing a new-generation of bullet train that will operate at 400 kilometers per hour.

A preliminary report issued on Thursday by Ethiopian officials found that a malfunctioning sensor sent incorrect inform

ation to a Boeing 737 Max 8 jetliner, triggering an anti-stall system that began a chain of events that ended with th

e plane nose-diving into the ground, killing 157 people on March 10, the Associated Press reported.

Boeing has acknowledged that the sensor malfunctioned in the Ethiopian Airlines 737

Max jetliner, triggering the anti-stall system when it was not needed, the AP reported.

In addition, CRRC is designing two types of maglev trains-a 600 km/h high-speed version and a 200 km/h medium-speed ver

sion. Designers said the company expects to put them into service sometime around 2021.

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There has always been a fixation on Chinese economic grow

growth-and with good reason. China sustained an average annual growth rate of 10 percent from 1980 to 2011, unprece

dented for a large economy. Since 2012, however, the annual growth has slowed down with the Government Wor

k Report presented recently by Premier Li Keqiang setting a growth target of 6-6.5 percent for 2019.

For China doubters, this is a “gotcha” moment. After all, the premier’s grow

th target implies a 40 percent deceleration from the “miracle” trend. This seems to vin

dicate warnings of the dreaded “middle-income trap”-the tendency of fast-growing developing economies to re

vert to a much weaker growth trajectory just when they get their first whiff of prosperity.

The early work on this phenomenon was precise in terms of what to expect: as per capita inco

me moved into the $16,000-$17,000 range (in dollars at purchasing power parity in 2005), a sust

ained growth deceleration of around 2.5 percentage points can be expected. With China having hit that income thr

eshold in 2017, according to International Monetary Fund estimates, its post-2011 slowdown looks all the more ominous.

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The terraced fields are where my roots are. They are the

 golden rice bowls passed down from our ancestors,” said Lu, 61. “We cannot afford to lose them.”

The local terraced fields have been in existence for about 1,300 years when

the Hani people built a complicated channel system to direct water from the forested hillto

p to nurture paddies on mountain slopes. The natural and cultural wonder was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2013.

It has not always been plain sailing. In the 1960s, a blight caused for

est coverage to drop to just 17 percent, threatening the terraced fields with a devastating drought.

The situation improved in recent decades after China tightened its crackdown on illegal lumb

ering and returned marginal farmland into forest, breathing new life into the local forests as well as terraced paddies.

But as economic takeoff swept across China, the Hani villages faced new trouble, as their old w

ays of farming and the limited output failed to keep young laborers from leaving for better-paying jobs in the cities.

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According to the official plan, Xiongan will be develope

ed into a high-level modern socialist city and a front-runner of high-quality developm

ent by 2035, and become an important nexus in the world-class city cluster by the middle of this century.

In January, Xi visited the exhibition center for the planning of Xiongan and stressed ag

ain that the creation of the new area is “a strategy that will have lasting

importance for the millennium to come”.

“We welcome all companies, whether they are State-owned enterprises or

private comp

anies, local firms or companies from Beijing, Chinese enterprises or overseas-funded com

panies, as long as they conform to the industrial development plan of the new

area,” Xi said during the inspection to

ur.Prime Minister Theresa May’s Brexit deal may not be dead after all — even

though lawmakers voted to reject it for

a third time Friday — the day Britain had long been scheduled to leave the European Union.

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