Weekly News – May 29 – June 4, 2021




Trade talks resume as China and the U.S. agree to pragmatically resolve problems for producers and consumers. 

Chinese Vice Premier Liu He had a call with US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Wednesday after talking with US Trade Representative Katherine Tai last week. 

Bilateral trade talks occurred after nine months of a break with two high-level talks in a week on issues of mutual concern, showing an increase in the engagement between trade and economic officials of the two main world powers.

Source: Reuters




China boosts measures to cool renminbi rally

After the soaring commodity prices and risks from high amounts of leverage across the economy, the strength of the renminbi is a further headache for Chinese policymakers. To rein in the surging yuan, China forced banks to hold more foreign currencies in reserve: it is the first time in more than a decade. 

The move, which the People’s Bank of China said will help liquidity management, effectively reduces the supply of dollars and other currencies onshore — putting pressure on the yuan to weaken. The nation’s financial institutions will need to hold 7% of their foreign exchange in reserve from June 15, according to a Central Bank statement Monday.

Sources: Bloomberg, Financial Times




Beijing Introduces Three-Child Policy

After census data showed a steep decline in birth rates, China has announced that it will allow couples to have up to three children. China scrapped its decades-old one-child policy in 2016, replacing it with a two-child limit. The latest move was approved by President Xi Jinping at a meeting of top Communist Party officials to address the problems of an aging population and the consequent loss of human resources.

In fact, many are asking if a three-child policy will be effective, especially when the two-child version did not do much to alleviate the demographic problem. Others have questioned why birth restrictions have remained here at all given the demographic trend. The fundamental issue is living costs are too high and life pressures are too huge.

Source: BBC News




The Development of Emerging Science and Technology and Its Ethical Challenges 


On the morning of May 28, 2021, the 20th Academician Conference of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the 15th Academician Conference of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, and the 10th National Congress of the China Association for Science and Technology were held in Beijing. On this occasion, Xi Jinping delivered an important speech. 

He said that national science and technology self-reliance should be the strategic support for national development. But he pointed out that “technology may also become a source of risk”. For this reason, it is necessary to foresee and judge rule conflicts, social risks, and ethical challenges brought about by technological development, and improve relevant laws and regulations, ethical review rules, and regulatory frameworks.

Source: 财新 Caixin (original in Chinese)




Tsinghua University welcomes original virtual student “Hua Zhibing” – 能写诗会作画 – 清华大学迎来原创虚拟学生“华智冰”

Enrolled at Tsinghua University’s department of computer science and technology, Hua Zhibing is a virtual student. According to Professor Tang Jie – Hua’s tutor – she can already write poetry and paint; she also has some reasoning and emotive capabilities. Peng Shuang, the co-founder of chatbot Xiaoice, hopes that in the future the virtual student will be able to have more human-like interactions with other students.

The Chinese government has great national plans for the AI sector: they want to achieve a “major breakthrough” in the basic theory of AI by 2025. Technology will hopefully have a key role in the country’s economic transformation and in upgrading its industrial capabilities.

Sources: Digital paper ( Original in Chinese), Sixth Tone



Related Posts