Chile: Chile Week across China enhances communication

The opening ceremony of the 8th Chile Week in Beijing kicked off on Monday. About 200 people attended the ceremony, including Chinese and Chilean representatives from associations, importers and exporters, and media. 

Afterward, the annual China-Chile Business Council Meeting was successfully held, at which the President of Chile, Gabriel Boric, encouraged Chinese and Chilean enterprises to enhance understanding and communication, with hopes that more Chinese enterprises make their debut in Chile to research the opportunities and invest in the country.

The Beijing leg of Chile Week boasted both online and offline sessions to showcase Chilean products. Many Chilean enterprises had their high-quality products on display for audiences during the offline business networking "encuentro." 

During the livestream broadcast on Douyin, a Chile Week live special sale was held to allow Chinese friends unable to be present offline to buy Chilean goods.

Chile Week is an annual event that serves as a platform for exchanges and interaction between China and Chile on all fronts, as well as an excellent opportunity to strengthen ties between the two countries in agribusiness, seafood, mining, energy, and other strategic sectors.

The first leg of the 8th Chile Week was inaugurated in Shenzhen on October 14, followed by the Chengdu stop on October 15, and the Shanghai leg from Thursday to Friday.

US’ intention to turn Taiwan island into powder keg laid bare in military drills

Citing sources from the US, Japanese media on Sunday reported that troops from Taiwan island last month attended military exercises led by the US National Guard in Michigan. 

Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times that Taiwan troops' participation in the US National Guard exercises shows that Taiwan island is enhancing cooperation with all levels of US military forces including the National Guard, while at the same time strengthening its urban terrain operational capabilities in case of an urban war.

Zhang Hua, a research fellow at the Institute of Taiwan Studies of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, echoed Song's view, adding that the US and the island of Taiwan are confusing the "cause" and "effect." They say their cooperation is a result of pressure from the mainland, but fail to mention the pressure is a result of "Taiwan independence," Zhang told the Global Times.

Although Japanese media reported that it was the National Guard, instead of the US Armed Forces, that led the Michigan exercises, an arrangement in a bid not to provoke China too much, the two Chinese experts believed this actually constitutes a full-fledged challenge against China and that the depth and width of cooperation between US and Taiwan forces is expanding.

The US keeps arming Taiwan by selling a large amount of weapons and equipment to Taiwan and encouraging Taiwan to "reject reunification with force," a move that aims to incite tensions across the Straits and will inevitably exacerbate the tension between China and the US which may lead to a conflict.

The US is unwilling to confront the Chinese People's Liberation Army directly. What it hopes more is a "wolfpack tactic" that relies on its allies. But at the same time, the US is worried that allies such as Japan, South Korea and Australia may not be willing to come to the front line to participate should a war break out. Therefore, its strategy is to encourage "self-defense" of the Taiwan authorities. The training, exercises, weapons and equipment provided by the US are all aimed at enabling the Taiwan authorities to achieve this goal.

As recent as July 28, the Biden administration announced a $345 million weapons package for Taiwan. Then in late August, for the first time it approved sending direct US military aid, which comprised an $80 million package to Taiwan under the Foreign Military Financing program. From the perspective of the US, whether it is the "porcupine strategy," "hedgehog strategy" or "iron keg strategy," it all boils down to the same thing, the US wants Taiwan to buy both offensive and defensive weapons and equipment from the US, and it wants to turn Taiwan into an "iron keg." And song pointed out that the US never cares about the security of the people on the Taiwan island.

China's bottom line on the Taiwan question is clear. Article 8 of China's Anti-Secession Law has explained that the country "shall employ non-peaceful means and other necessary measures to protect China's sovereignty and territorial integrity" in the event that the "Taiwan independence" secessionist forces should act under any name or by any means to cause the fact of Taiwan's secession from China, or that major incidents entailing Taiwan's secession from China should occur, or that possibilities for a peaceful reunification should be completely exhausted. The Chinese mainland has never promised to renounce the use of force, and this is the Sword of Damocles hanging over the US government and Taiwan authorities.

Hope China-Australia dialogue can achieve results beyond expectations: Global Times editorial

The 7th China-Australia High Level Dialogue will be held in Beijing on September 7. This is not just a momentous event between China and Australia, but also a reflection of the East-West relationship as a whole. As a 1.5-track high-level dialogue initiated in 2014, this exchange is a thermometer for China-Australia relations. The interruption of this dialogue in 2020 was widely regarded as a prominent sign of the sharp decline in bilateral relations. After the Albanese government came to power and began adjusting its policy toward China, China-Australia relations rebounded. The restart of this high-level dialogue is seen as a sign of further warming of China-Australia relations. 

This is the outcome that we are all hoping for. If China and Australia can effectively manage their disagreements while maintaining and strengthening mutually beneficial cooperation in the current international circumstances, China can do the same with other Western countries. From this vantage point, China-Australia ties have far-reaching ramifications beyond bilateral relations.

The ups and downs of China-Australia relations, from initially positive to being impacted by external circumstances and the growth of radical anti-China forces within Australia, to a more pragmatic adjustment by the Labor Party government, are extremely representative. It is obvious that Australia is primarily to blame for this. Therefore, when the Australian government changed, China-Australia relations ushered in an opportunity for a turnaround. The detours taken by China-Australia relations serve as a lesson not only for Australia but also for other Western countries in how to handle their relations with China.
 It is essential to point out that most people who predict that China-Australia relations will improve are either Australians or members of Western public opinion. Although there is some optimism in China, it is cautious and constrained because expectations there are generally modest. This difference reflects the instability of trust between the two countries, and a "warming" without trust is difficult to sustain. We hope that at this moment of "restarting" bilateral relations, the Australian side should seriously listen to the thoughts of China, which is important for truly promoting the warming of bilateral relations.

From the perspective of the size and the composition of the Australian delegation, it is not hard to feel how much importance Canberra has attached to the restart of the dialogue. The large scale of personnel is uncommon compared to previous dialogues. The delegation is composed of representatives from both political parties, including former Labor trade minister Craig Emerson and former Liberal foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop, demonstrating the "political support" of both parties for this dialogue. The delegation members come from various sectors such as businesses, government, academia and media, all are familiar with China-Australia relations. We hope that the restart of this high-level dialogue also signifies the comprehensive restoration of the China-Australia strategic dialogue.

It is easier for things to slide downward than improve, the latter requires greater effort. It is the same in relations between countries. If we describe China-Australia ties as a student who started with score 80, yet the score has fallen to 40, we can say that the score improved a little now. Yet it is not enough. It requires more joint efforts from both China and Australia. It specifically requires Australia to overcome internal and external pressures to the greatest extent. Frankly speaking, Australia has not done enough in this regard and some mistakes are continuing.

Some Western countries, including the US, have repeatedly emphasized that they will not "decouple" from China while praising Australia as an "example" of "resisting Chinese coercion." The news of the high-level dialogue between China and Australia has received a lukewarm response from some Western media, which instead have been focusing on the country's new strategy to boost trade with Southeast Asia, proposed by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese at the ASEAN Summit, claiming that China's doubts are growing about the strategy. Australia has not withdrawn from the US strategy of containing China, nor has it shown such intentions. These pieces of information reflect the complexity of China-Australia relations.

One reality that both China and Australia need to face is that the urgent task of the current China-Australia relationship is to quickly reach a passing line. We have spoken enough to Australia in the past two years, but how much Australia can take in is not for us to decide. However, we have received Australia's sincerity in wanting to strengthen communication with China and will respond with goodwill. We hope that the high-level dialogue between China and Australia can achieve results beyond expectations.

Reality and delusion of India’s ‘great power dream’ from G20 New Delhi Summit

After marathon negotiations, the G20 summit held in New Delhi, India, finally managed to reach a joint declaration on September 10, avoiding the embarrassment of a fruitless summit. The Finance and Central Bank Deputies Meeting and Foreign Ministers' Meeting hosted by India before the summit failed to produce a decent joint declaration, highlighting the significant differences in positions and opinions among the countries as well as the Indian government's struggle to deal with a divided world.

The joint declaration of this summit once again clarifies the positioning of the G20 as "the premier forum for international economic cooperation," and it states that "while the G20 is not the platform to resolve geopolitical and security issues, we acknowledge that these issues can have significant consequences for the global economy." G20 members have reached a consensus and invited the African Union (AU) to become a formal member of the mechanism. This can be seen as a "rectification" to counter the attempts by the US and the West to hijack the G20 summit agenda, as well as a response from developing countries and the Global South.

Despite the discontent in Ukraine and the difficulty of reaching consensus, Western diplomats were willing to "let through" the declaration's wording on the Russia-Ukraine conflict, probably believing it was a price worth paying. Aljazeera commented that "many Western countries, concerned about China's rising power, want New Delhi - a strategic counterweight to Beijing - to be able to claim this summit was a great success."

Inviting the AU to join the G20 is an important outcome of this summit. As the largest developing country and a member of the Global South, China was the first country to explicitly express its support for the AU's membership in the G20. Of course, India's efforts to include the AU may imply a calculation to win the support of African countries for India's bid for permanent membership in the UN Security Council.

Since taking over as the rotating chair of the G20 summit in December last year, the Modi administration has regarded the G20 summit as a "golden opportunity" to confirm India as a "global leading power." It also intends to turn this into a major diplomatic achievement domestically and use it as an opportunity for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to campaign for next year's general elections.

At the same time, India sees itself as a bridge between the "Global South" and the "Global West." The External Affairs Minister of India, Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, said India has the potential to become "a bridge between the established and emerging orders."

However, India's dream of being a great power is idealistic, but the reality and setbacks it encounters are cruel. From the beginning, India has been under pressure from the US and the West, demanding condemnation of Russia at the G20 summit. New Delhi wants to maintain its special partnership with Moscow, while also trying to please the US and the West and act as the spokesperson for the "Global South." Meanwhile, the current administration wants to campaign for the BJP in next year's general elections. It is obvious that India expects too much from the G20 summit.

It is understandable that India wants to use the G20 summit stage to demonstrate its status as a major power and shape an international order that is favorable to itself. 

However, the excessive political calculations and geopolitical considerations introduced into the G20 summit agenda have led to reduced expectations from relevant countries and have deprived the international community of an opportunity to concentrate on substantively addressing global challenges such as food and energy crises.

China and India have had good cooperation in many areas. However, in recent years, India has deliberately highlighted its differences with China in such areas as regional and global governance as well as sustainable development, with the intention of marginalizing China from the Global South community. New Delhi's practice of undermining developing countries' unity and cooperation and boosting itself by belittling other countries deserves vigilance. It is destined to be recorded in the history of the G20 New Delhi Summit and reflects the delusional side of India's dream of becoming a major power.

Arab world sees multi-alignment as the norm

It is becoming increasingly clear that the Arab region and world are already in the post-West and post-US era. The world order has been rapidly changing and multipolarity is becoming more and more a reality.

The rising power and growing influence of the developing nations, spearheaded by China, are shifting the world's center of gravity to the East and the South. The recent BRICS and G20 summits have amplified the voice of the Global Majority, more visibly showing the global power redistribution. The final communiques of both summits have reinforced the perception that no one single country or bloc of countries can dictate the terms of global consensus. Although the two summits' communiques used different terms, they both acknowledged the need to reform the global governance architecture, including Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs), and allow a larger representation for marginalized regions such as Africa. In both declarations, the Global South's perspective on the Ukraine conflict has prevailed. 

Because of this grand rebalancing, the African Union (AU) has been added as a permanent member of the G20. This is also one important reason BRICS has been expanded to include additional six countries, three of which are from the Arab world.  Just as the G20 expansion is not against anybody, but an attempt to make the grouping more representative of current global realities, the BRICS expansion is not against anybody, but an attempt to create more momentum behind the efforts to reform the global governance system so that it is more inclusive, equitable and democratic.

The Arabs are demonstrating their strategic autonomy by joining various partnerships established by seemingly opposing camps in the current intensifying great power rivalry. The Arab nations are joining BRICS, the Global South's leading platform, while simultaneously partnering with the West on India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC), a project that has been announced recently on G20 sidelines. Just as the Arabs' decision to join BRICS was not aimed against the West, but was based on national strategic objectives, their recent decision to sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the IMEC was not aimed against China's Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).  

There is an important difference between the BRI and the IMEC. The IMEC is an idea that is still being explored; it does not have concretely defined national commitments, scope, capital requirements and roles. On the other hand, the BRI is a mature program, which has proven its worth, bringing tangible benefits to its participants. The BRI is regaining momentum, thanks to serious contributions from China and its committed BRI partners; many BRI summits and events are held this year to mark the initiative's 10th anniversary. Regardless of who initiated them and how they will evolve in the future, the BRI and IMEC should be celebrated, not politicized or weaponized, because they are meant to enhance connectivity and facilitate global trade. How much positive impact they generate should be the only criterion for assessing those initiatives.

Multi-alignment and minilateralism are becoming the norm in the current fast-changing world. It is unwise to narrow-mindedly define the world in binary terms, "democracy versus authoritarianism" or "the West versus the rest". In the current fluid world order, most of the world, including the Arab region, is open to all kinds of partnerships and platforms that can serve their interests. India, for example, is an important member of BRICS and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO); at the same time, it is a member of the Quad, the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QSD). Last August, India, Brazil and South Africa, the three "democratic members" of the BRICS, participated in the BRICS summit, which included China and Russia; less than three weeks later, the same three countries had a joint meeting with the US during the G20 summit.  

The Arabs do not view their relations through an ideological prism; they are pragmatic, seeking partnerships based on mutual trust, respect, and benefit. The world is quickly adjusting to the reality that no one single country or bloc of countries can dictate the terms of multilateral partnerships and global governance. The Arabs are already adapting their regional and international behavior to this reality; no external pressure can change this fact.

The Arabs are joining different groups and platforms as equal partners, not as subordinates. Throughout their history and by virtue of their central geography, the Arabs have thrived on establishing relations with various regions and economic centers.  Just like the Chinese, the Arabs are people of trade; they have been trading with each other and with others for thousands of years. As traders, it is natural and imperative for their success to build trust and win-win relations with the world. It is no wonder Arab-China trade is breaking records; last year, it reached more than $400 billion.

The global stage is becoming less welcoming to those who want to bring back hegemony and force others into subordinate positions. Those who think they should have superiority to all others economically, politically, culturally or otherwise, are using outdated mental models of a bygone era. Their sense of insecurity and lack of confidence about their own place in the world are pushing them to view their relations with others through the destructive zero-sum perspective. However, time, history, demographics and numbers are on the side of those who are working toward a multipolar world and those who are creating a multipolar Middle East. The two evolving orders are positively reinforcing each other.  

The Arab world is going through a transition period, steered primarily by the Arabs themselves.  The changes happening in the Arab world today do not represent a turning point or an abrupt regional transformation; it is an expected phase of an organic evolution. The region has been evolving since the disintegration of the Ottoman Empire, passing through European imperialism, surviving the US hegemony, and now arriving at a crucial historic juncture.

Just like the Chinese, Africans, Indians, Russians and most other peoples, the Arabs prefer a world that is multipolar where multilateralism can thrive, and unilateralism can be restricted. The Arabs are too wise and too strategic to pick sides; their neutral position on the Ukraine conflict and their positively expanding partnerships with different power centers illustrate their sophisticated understanding of the current tectonic power shifts. 

The Arabs recognize that this is the era of active diplomacy and dynamic partnerships.  For them, the world is becoming more complex, requiring agility and versatility; there is no place for binary or black-and-white thinking. After twenty years of wars and conflicts imposed on the region, the Arabs are regaining self-confidence and working strategically to secure their future in the emerging new world. They have developed enough human capital and technocratic capacity to be able to manage the delicate transition. The next couple of decades will be critically important for the Arabs to restore their place in the world. 

They should continue their wise policy of being friends to all and enemies to none.  They should make full use of their growing agency to achieve their national interests while fiercely protecting their strategic autonomy. They must exploit the opportunities and tackle the challenges provided by the multi-polarizing world. They should continue building indigenous capabilities and diversifying global partnerships.

The Arabs are at a critical crossroads in their history; they must unite and rally behind one common vision for their future and place in the world.

To solve global challenges, the global community must join forces

Editor's Note:

China's State Council Information Office issued an informative white paper, entitled "A Global Community of Shared Future: China's Proposals and Actions," to review and preview the China-led vision of co-building a global community of shared future on Tuesday in Beijing. Humanity is yet again at another crossroads in history, and the choices between unity and division, between opening up and closing off, as well as between cooperation and confrontation test the wisdom of all countries, the white paper said. How should we understand the global community of shared future? How should countries around the world work together to promote the construction of the global community of shared future? Global Times invited two foreign scholars to share their views on this issue.

Building a global community of shared future is a Chinese proposal to jointly address global challenges and create a better future for humanity. Under this proposal, China advocates building a world of lasting peace through dialogue and consultation, building a world of common security for all through joint efforts, building a world of common prosperity through win-win cooperation, and building an open and inclusive world through exchanges and mutual learning and making the world clean and beautiful by pursuing green and low-carbon development. This is the beautiful vision of the global community of shared future presented by China in the new era. 

The world is currently undergoing unprecedented changes that have not been seen in a century. On the one hand, there is a historical inclination toward peace and the recognition of the need to eliminate irreparable conflicts that are detrimental to the planet. Additionally, there is a growing tendency toward development, cooperation and mutual benefit that cannot be stopped. On the other hand, the presence of hegemonism and bullying between countries and peoples is causing significant harm, leading to unprecedented challenges for the international community. As a result, the world finds itself at a crucial juncture in history. The establishment of a global community of shared future is of the utmost importance for humanity. This concept enables the international community to confront the new challenges brought about by these major changes and work together toward a common goal.

Furthermore, it is imperative to align with the current trend of the times, which is characterized by a new scientific and technological revolution driven by information technology. The internet has revolutionized the world, bringing the international community closer than ever before. Therefore, it is crucial to ensure that the future is also shared in cyberspace. This entails promoting common development, enhancing security and actively participating in governance, with a commitment to jointly sharing the outcomes. The first strategic goals should be to prioritize responsibility and interests that benefit all of mankind.

A further step toward shared future is to improve human welfare and well-being. We also need cultural exchanges to promote knowledge and mutual learning; innovative economic development for common prosperity; ensuring international security and fostering orderly development. Furthermore, the strengthening of the authority of the United Nations, whose documents are all too often disregarded and advancing equity and justice to provide a practical approach and a pathway to peace are also needed.

Unfortunately, the world is currently facing the dangers of unilateralism, protectionism, and hegemonism. Unilateralism refers to a major power that, regardless of the wishes of the majority of countries and citizens, takes the initiative to withdraw or defy the rules and regulations that have been drafted and negotiated to maintain international, regional and collective peace. These systems, behaviors and tendencies have destructive effects and consequences on global or local peace, development and progress. Therefore, a reform in international governance is necessary to ensure that global governance adheres to the principles of opposing protectionism and unilateralism. This reform should also contribute to promoting the process of trade liberalization and investment facilitation worldwide, ultimately serving the principle of non-discrimination among peoples.

As is well known, hegemonism refers to the oppression, domination, interference and subversion of small, weak and poor countries by large, powerful and rich countries. It does not respect the independence and sovereignty of others and exercises control and rule by force. Hegemonism can be observed at both global and regional levels. Throughout history, many powers, particularly the US, have all attempted to gain world hegemony, often disguising their actions as neo-colonialism. The evidence of hegemonism can be seen by examining history. In order to maintain peace, the only solution is to counteract it.

Joining forces to build a global community of shared future is a realistic requirement and the only choice for the survival and development of mankind. Building such a community is an important trend in history and is inevitable. However, achieving this goal is not something that can happen overnight; it requires a long and difficult process.

In reality, building a global community of shared future faces challenges such as differences in strategic thinking, cultural values and global strength among countries around the world. Additionally, there are risks of conflicts arising from fundamental interests in the international arena. It is important to understand these challenges objectively and propose targeted response strategies. Taking the initiative to resolve crises quickly, opening up new opportunities for change, maximizing advantages and avoiding disadvantages are crucial steps in this process. It is also important to explore constructive practices that rule out war as a solution. Only by doing so can we make steady progress toward this goal.

Removal of McCarthy signifies further polarization of American politics

On October 3, the US House of Representatives voted to oust Speaker Kevin McCarthy, making him the first Speaker of the House in US history to be voted out, and also the one with the shortest tenure. What's crucial is that it marks the deepening division within the Republican Party and the further polarization between the two major political parties in the US.

The state of the US politics is essentially fragmented, with significant changes in the core voter demographics of both parties and the emergence of prominent extremist forces. Within the Republican Party, extreme factions like the Freedom Caucus have gained prominence since the era of Donald Trump. This political fragmentation has led to confusion and internal strife within both parties, as explained by Diao Daming, a professor at the Renmin University of China in Beijing. According to Diao, this event is a result of political decline and the failure of governance. Instead of addressing critical issues such as the debt ceiling and government shutdown, both parties prioritized maximizing their internal interests.

Following this turmoil, the space for compromise between the two parties is expected to shrink further. This phenomenon is driven by both technical and strategic reasons, said Yang Xiyu, a senior research fellow at the China Institute of International Studies. Faced with the budget dispute between the two parties, McCarthy made a compromise that did not sit well with the hardliners within his party. His removal essentially prevents future Speakers of the House, who are also leaders of the Republican Party, from following in McCarthy's footsteps.

From a strategic perspective, the divisions between the two parties extend beyond specific budgetary issues to affect US' national development. The different budget proposals put forward by the Democratic and Republican parties reflect their distinct visions for the country. With the turmoil within the Republican Party, it has become increasingly difficult for both parties to reach compromises.

Yang pointed out that this upheaval is not merely about reaching or failing to reach compromises; it fundamentally reflects a disconnect between the current design of the US democratic system and the rapidly changing society. This shift in leadership within the US House of Representatives was triggered by the budget issue, but it is also rooted in the profound divisions between the two parties regarding the direction of the nation. However, the functioning of this political system is becoming increasingly incompatible with the deeply divided American society.

Presently, the US is in a state of political extremism, with both major parties becoming more polarized. As political figures navigate the pressures of Washington, they must continuously rally their constituents. Consequently, voters from both parties are becoming more polarized, further exacerbating the division.

The US had long presented itself as a "beacon of democracy." However, with its domestic political turmoil, this myth has been shattered. This has led to increasing contradictions between the two major driving forces of US foreign policy—American interests and American values. The failure of the American democratic system domestically has raised questions about American values on the international stage. While the US has sought to incorporate these values into its foreign policy and promote them globally, it has also sparked growing conflicts. As a result, the US' international influence has declined, eroding international confidence in the so-called American values.

Whether EU can ‘reduce perception of risk’ depends on its attitude toward protectionism

While EU's trade chief Valdis Dombrovskis urges China to do more to help "reduce the perception of risk," there are multiple signs that bilateral economic ties are embarking on fast-track development. Obviously, the European business community hopes EU's priority is to promote cooperation, rather than "de-risk" its relationship with China.

Amid global uncertainty, European and Chinese senior officials held high-level economic and trade talks on Monday. Despite some disagreements which are continually hyped up by some EU politicians, the high-level trade talks serve as a good opportunity for China and the EU to enhance communication and understanding.

Ahead of the dialogue, some statistics showed German companies continue to invest heavily in China despite calls from a number of German politicians to reduce their exposure in China. Investment in China as a share of Germany's overall investments increased to 16.4 percent in the first half of this year from 11.6 percent in 2022 and 5.1 percent in 2019, Reuters reported on Wednesday, citing data from the German Economic Institute, a private economic research institute in Germany.

Germany has been Europe's economic engine for decades. However, persistent inflation has pushed the German economy into a technical recession with data showing that the economy contracted in the first quarter of 2023. Overall, German direct investment outflows dropped sharply, to 63 billion euros ($67 billion) in the first half of 2023 from 104 billion euros in the first half of 2022. 

At a time when Europe's largest economy is battling recession, the Chinese economy offers opportunities for German enterprises. That's why in spite of the so-called decoupling or de-risking rhetoric made by some Western officials, European investments continue to pour into China. 

It is worth noting that there is a trend that the more open China becomes, the more vigilant the EU has become against China. It is true that economic and trade disputes exist in China-EU relations. The European Commission launched an investigation on September 13 into whether to impose additional tariffs to protect EU producers against cheaper Chinese electric vehicle (EV) imports it says are benefiting from the so-called state subsidies. Trade protectionism could be a double-edged sword for bilateral relations, as China is now an important overseas market for European enterprises.

Dombrovskis said in a speech he delivered at Tsinghua University in Beijing on Monday that Europe's economic ties with China are deep, but China "could do a lot to help reduce our perception of risk," according to a Reuters report. The report said the EU has long complained about "a lack of level playing field in China" and "the politicization of the business environment," which is mainly a Western narrative to sow discord and to pressure China to give foreign investors supernational treatment. 

As a matter of fact, Europe is the party that adopts protectionist measures to disrupt economic and trade cooperation. China welcomes investment from European countries, but the ball is in the European's court to break down barriers over mutually-beneficial economic cooperation. The best way to help reduce European perception of risk is to put geopolitical thinking aside, stop adopting protectionist measures, fully consider the feelings of European companies, and resolve each other's concerns through dialogue and consultation.

Monday's dialogue, the first in-person meeting post-pandemic, has drawn wide attention. It's impossible to solve each and every problem overnight, especially amid the "decoupling" calls and the instigations by the US, but achievements will add up through frank dialogues and communications, pushing forward China-EU economic ties.

Monday's trade talks won't become the endpoint for both sides to seek common ground and solutions to resolve differences and problems. Future efforts should be made and the European side should take more responsibility, as it is the party bowing to trade protectionism. Whether it can "reduce the perception of risk" depends on Europe's attitude toward trade protectionism.

Airbus helps propel sustainable energy transformation in civilian aviation: executive

Airbus is playing a role of "catalyst" in Chinese market for the development of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) industry, propelling sustainable energy transition in civilian aviation sector to realize decarbonization targets, an executive from Airbus said in Beijing on Tuesday.

Airbus is working on a number of levers, so the first one is technology and fleet renewal. The company is also working actively on improving the efficiency of operations. And the third and very big one is the energy transition of which SAF is a key topic, Julie-Kitcher, Executive Vice President of Airbus said.

The comments are made as more Chinese airlines vowing to promote use of sustainable aviation fuel. In October of last year, Airbus said its Tianjin plant delivered an A320neo to China Eastern Airlines that used five percent SAF as the fuel during its delivery flight.

SAF is a sustainable aviation fuel made from feedstock ranging from used fat, oil and grease to municipal and forestry waste. Compared to fossil jet fuel, SAF has been demonstrated to result in an up to 80 percent reduction in CO2 emissions. Therefore, it is considered as a key enabler to contribute to the de-carbonization of aviation sector.
And so when talking about SAF, there's a huge capability in China with feedstock in abundance, technology and innovation and in fact, China has been supporting certification since 2008 in different ways. All the airlines have expressed interest in environmental matters on sustainability, SAF in particular, Kitcher said.

And Airbus is working with China National Aviation Fuel Group Corporation to develop the SAF industry or act as a catalyst in China, she added.

In July of last year, the Airbus Lifecycle Services Center project broke ground in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan Province. The project is Airbus' first aircraft lifecycle service project outside Europe. The company said the project has moved from the planning stage to construction and the aim is for it to enter into service by the end of 2023.

Airbus is spending around 2 billion euros per annum on R&D, which is mainly targeting sustainable aviation. All partners and players will need to make significant investments for their respective licenses to continue to operate. Aircraft manufacturer need to really look at the overall lifecycle of the aircraft, so it's from design, supply chain, the operations, the maintenance, and the end of life recycling, Kitcher said.

To show the conviction in terms of the necessity to decarbonize the sector, Kitcher said that they're working on different levels for the industry, including the technology starting with fleet renewal and enhancing and improving the efficiency of air traffic management operations.

She also said to enhance the energy transition, which means to increase the adoption of SAF, Airbus targets to certify all its aircraft with 100 percent SAF capability by the end of this decade, adding that the company is also developing hydrogen technologies for future use.

Airbus is aiming to reach a global 10 percent target by 2030, which is around 34 million tons of SAF by 2030.Actual demand for probably around 20 million tons are committed. So "we still have progress to make, but we're confident that collectively we can get there", she said.

Travel heat continues as 'Golden Week' enters fourth day

Travel heat continued to spread nationwide. The number of railway trips made by Chinese passengers is expected to hit 16.40 million on Monday, the fourth day of eight-day-long National Day holiday and the Mid-Autumn Festival.

On October 1, the national railway transported 16.29 million passengers, China Railway, the national railway operator, said on Monday. On October 2, it is estimated that the national railway will transport 16.40 million passengers, with 11,274 passenger trains in operation, including 906 additional trains.

The Yangtze River Delta region is expected to transfer 3.5 million passenger trips, which is about 28 percent more than the same period in 2019, according to media reports.

The 2023 Golden Week started from September 29 to October 6. The 8-day holiday is the longest public holiday of the year. 

The Ministry of Culture and Tourism estimated there will be 896 million domestic tourists traveling during the Golden Week holiday, an increase of 86 percent compared to last year. Domestic tourism revenue is expected to reach 782.5 billion yuan ($107.2 billion), up by 138 percent on a yearly basis.

The popularity of scenic spots, urban leisure, rural tourism, and visiting relatives and friends has increased significantly, the ministry said.

Localities on Monday started to release travel statistics for the first three days.

Beijing's major scenic spots received 6.825 million tourists during the first three days of the holiday, up by 60.6 percent year-on-year. Tourism revenue reached 4.19 trillion yuan, an increase of 25.2 percent year-on-year.

A netizen posted a photo of the Badaling Great Wall in Beijing, saying that it is not exhausting at all climbing the Great Wall, when you only take two steps in three minutes.

Hangzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province, which is hosting the 19th Asian Games, has welcomed a record number of tourists during the holiday. During the first three days, the city welcomed a total of 4.7 million tourists.

Tickets of many popular scenic spots were sold out, with some sold out even before the holiday started.

Tickets for Mount Taishan in East China's Shandong Province were all sold out until Wednesday. Tickets can be booked 14 days in advance. The current daily limit is 80,000 tourists.

A netizen posted a photo of crowds queuing at the entrance of Mount Taishan at 4:30 in the morning, attempting to avoid huge tourist flows. 

Mount Huangshan in East China's Anhui Province said in an announcement on Sunday that tickets for Monday have been sold out and advised tourists who failed to buy a ticket to avoid the site. Huangshan welcomed 29,753 tourists alone on Sunday.

A number of museums also announced that they have reached their daily limits.

Sichuan Museum in Chengdu, Southwest China's Sichuan Province, said its reservations have reached daily limit of 10,000 visitors until Wednesday.

The Emperor Qinshihuang's Mausoleum Site Museum in Northwest China's Shaanxi Province was also fully booked until Wednesday, with only few tickets left for Thursday and Friday.

A netizen who visited the museum joked: "Even the terracotta warriors would not have room to stand, if they were not put inside the protection window."