Thus, another feather in China’s cap is its establishme

nt of a comprehensive social security system in record time. Having set up the foundation,

it can now focus on targeted improvements. For example, in 2017, China provided special funds for pre-preg

nancy and other medical checkups for women, benefiting 12 million women, or 91.7 percent of the target group.

The country’s modernization could not have occurred without the people increasing their capabilities. Beyond general educ

ation for the population, the government has increased the knowledge and experience of officials to be at the fore

front of solving problems. Specialist schools and academies have been set up in multiple fields, including a national soci

al security school in Beijing to build the capacity of social security officers across the nation.

It is the totality of the Chinese experience over the past four decades, in rebuilding the

country in so many ways, that has become an inspiration for other countries. C

hina has been a diligent student learning from others. Today, it also has many experiences to share with the world.

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The Chinese government has never imposed any policy

 to force foreign companies to transfer their technology,” Gao added, sayi

ng that the country’s Foreign Investment Law bars forced technology transfers.

The newly passed law, approved this month and set to take effect in January, stipulates that China will treat foreign and Chi

nese enterprises equally and protect their intellectual property rights. Under the law, foreign enterprises will recei

ve pre-establishment national treatment, in addition to a negative list system for market access.

A negative list shows areas where investment i

s limited or prohibited for foreign investors, with all other areas presumed to be open.

Gao said the ministry is working with relevant de

partments to conduct research on shortening the negative list for market access.

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New cross-border bridge to boost China-Vietnam trade

The Second Beilun River Bridge opened to traffic on March 19. It connects the Chinese city of Dongxing with the Vietn

amese city of Mong Cai, two important trade cities along the border between the two countries.

The new bridge spans 549 meters across the border river between China and Vietnam and is built to the first-class high

way standard. Construction started in 2014 and was completed in late 2017, costing a total of 220 million yuan ($33 million).

The bridge will greatly alleviate traffic burden on the First Beilun River Bridge three kilometers away, whi

ch was previously the only means of shipping personnel and cargo to or from Dongxing Checkpoint.

Statistics from immigration authorities show that 12.19 million people and 47,05

6 vehicles passed over the old bridge in 2018, far beyond its maximum capacity.

The new bridge is now designated for freight vehicles, while the First Be

ilun River Bridge is reserved for personnel. This could save 30 minutes or more in custo

ms clearance time for each consignment, according to Huang Xiong, deputy chief of Dongxing Customs.

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China is willing to enhance high-level guidance with the

Italian side, respect each other’s major concerns, jointly build the Belt and Road, explore cooperation with third parties, boost

cultural exchanges and local-level cooperation, and strengthen popular support for bilateral relations, Xi said.

The Chinese president stressed that in recent years, China’s National People’s Con

gress and the Italian Senate have established a regular exchange mechanism.

China supports the two countries’ legislative bodies to carry out multi-level, wide-ranging and multi-c

hannel exchanges and cooperation, and share successful experience on major issues such as legislative supervision, state gov

erning, national economy and the people’s livelihood, on the basis of mutual respect and mutual learning, Xi said.

He said he hopes that the Italian Senate will continue to play an active facilitating role, and cr

eate better conditions for and inject greater momentum into the development of bilateral relations.

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Four carriers-Swisscom, Australia’s Telstra and Opt

 and Sing-Tel of Singapore-will sell the as yet unnamed 5G Oppo phone first, which is scheduled to be launched in the second quarter of this year.

Shen Yiren, vice-president of Oppo, said the four overseas carriers are rolling out the 5G netwo

rks rapidly, so the company chose to first sell its 5G smartphones in Europe. Its partnership with Swisscom is the fastest.

The move marks the latest step by Oppo to build itself as an innova

tive brand in Europe, trying to lure consumers with cutting-edge products and design.

This is also proof of the company’s determination to conquer more develop

ed markets after its products became available in more than 40 countries and regions.

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Mocking O’Rourke’s gestures might seem a frivolous at a time

  of national political angst and with a heavy duty policy debate already under way. But Trump is an expert at trivializing and belittling opponents, to de

tract from the gravity of their arguments and to feed the conservative media machine.

  His diagnosis of Jeb Bush’s “low energy” four years ago established a narrative about the former Florida gove

rnor’s campaign that hinted at a grain of truth. The one-time GOP front-runner could never recover.

  Trump vs. Brexit — and Obama

  At one point in the meeting Tump, said he wasn’t going to “comment on Bre

xit,” but characteristically unable to constrain himself, could barely leave the topic alone.

  At the start of his meeting, Trump welcomed Varadkar, and poin

ting out that his visitor was in a difficult position over Britain’s tortured attempts to comp

lete its withdrawal from the European Union, which could harm Ireland’s peace and prosperity.

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The administration will also promote the ecological restor

ation of grasslands and push forward the establishment of pilot national parks.

China is rich in grassland resources – with nearly 400 million hect

ares of natural grassland accounting for 41.7 perc

ent of the country’s land. Protection and restoration of grassland resources will be strengthened, Zhang said.

Measures to be taken include finding out the entire picture of grassland resources, assessing

current pol2olkcimcn-2ting a guideline on how to strengthen grassland protection and restoration, he said.

As for national parks, Zhang said that after the central authorities released an overall plan for introducing a national park

mechanism, the administration drafted a layout of national parks and standards for their protection.

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New rocket engine to lift heavier satellite loadcommercial

China has developed a world-class solid-propellant rocket engine that is expected to boost the country’s capabilities in launching small satellites, its developer said.

The Academy of Aerospace Solid Propulsion Technology in Xi’an, Shaanxi province, a subsidiary of China Aeros

pace Science and Technology Corp, announced that the first ignition test of the engine was successfully made on Tuesday.

The academy said in a statement that the engine uses several ad

vanced technologies and high-performance composite materials and has world-class capa

bility. It can be used with the country’s new-generation solid-fuel rockets, giving such rockets more power to l

ift small satellites and also promising good competitiveness in the commercial launch market, it said.

The academy said the engine has a diameter of 2.65 meters, contains 71 metric tons of solid p

ropellant and produces 200 tons of thrust-making it the biggest and most powerful known solid

-propellant engine in China. The engine that previously held that distinction is made by the China Aer

ospace Science and Industry Corp Fourth Academy in Wuhan, Hubei province, and produces 180 tons of thrust.

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Emphasis is placed on promoting investment by openin

up more sectors for equity investment, improving IPR regime, encouraging innovation and technological development.

Major reforms have been announced to boost market and investors’ confidence. The policy measu

res and programs announced today are considered as key drivers for continued economic growth of Ch

ina. China’s economic development is vitally important for the healthy development of world economy and for Nep

al it is more so as the economies of Nepal and China get increasingly inter-connected.

Moreover, China’s economic policies are more and more relevant for Nepal as we pursue our path of economic develop

ment in a faster pace by further strengthening economic ties with China. We are seeking expanded cooperation in inve

stment, connectivity (more specifically cross-border transport infrastructures including railways), to

urism, technology transfer, industrial development, agricultural development and development of digital technology, an

d we foresee greater investments, tourism and trade between Nepal and China in the year ahead.

Therefore, China’s continued growth, and stable socio-economic

development have paramount importance for Nepal. I wish a complete success in their end

eavor of developing China a moderately prosperous society in all respect by 2021.

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Polls across the country were scheduled to open at 8 a.m

  (2 a.m. ET) and close at 2 p.m. (8 a.m. ET) Saturday, but reports soon emerged of widespread delays.

  In the megacity of Lagos, CNN visited multiple polling stations, all of which opened hours la

ter than planned. Voters said they had lined up for hours before electoral officers arrived with voting materials.

  To cast their ballots Saturday, voters were expected to complete an accreditation process in which officials from Nigeria’s Independent National Elec

toral Commission take their fingerprints and scan their permanent voting cards.

  A nurse told CNN she turned up at a polling station after working a night shift, only to face a long wait.

  ”I am supposed to be resting now, but I came to the polling station (at) 7:30 a.m. thinking they the electoral commissi

on officials) will be here, but it’s two hours now, and they have not come,” Juliet Emoedin said.

  Festus Okoye, a national commissioner for the electoral commission, sa

id stations that opened late would close an hour later, according to the Nigerian Television Authority, the state

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