PLA Warplanes, Warships Spotted In Nighttime Patrols Around Taiwan
Defence authorities in Taiwan stated in a recent press release that it detected 24 PLA aircraft and five PLA vessels around the island over the past day, 11 of which crossed the so-called median line of the Taiwan Straits or entered the island’s self-proclaimed southwestern and northern air defence identification zone. Some 18 of the detected PLA aircraft, including Su-30 fighter jets and Y-8 special mission aircraft, operated at night after 7:50 pm on Wednesday, and conducted joint combat patrols with the PLA vessels, according to a separate notice released by the defence authority on the island of Taiwan on Wednesday evening. Foreign media outlets including Reuters said that it marks the first large-scale PLA military activity after the island’s regional election, which voted for the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) Lai Ching-te as the next regional leader. Chinese military experts stated that the PLA regularly holds exercises and patrols around Taiwan, and they have become routine in recent years, so there is no need to link the drills to the election.
Source: Global Times
China Has No Desire to Challenge The US, Says Envoy
Beijing has no intention to challenge or unseat Washington, a Chinese diplomat has said on the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and the United States, calling for mutual trust and cooperation between the two sides. The Chinese consul general in New York Huang Ping made the remarks at a reception held by the Chinese Consulate General in New York on Wednesday to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between China and the US. About 150 guests, including diplomatic and policy experts, and religious and social leaders, attended the reception. Expressing a welcoming attitude, Huang urged US companies to continue investing in China. Chinese market is not only big, but also highly profitable and full of talented innovators, he said, adding that it is a testing ground for international businesses to improve their competitiveness.
Source: China Daily
China, Philippines Agree On Improving Sea-Related Communication
China and the Philippines held the eighth meeting of the China-Philippines Bilateral Consultation Mechanism (BCM) on the South China Sea in Shanghai on Wednesday amid rising tensions, and the two sides agreed on improving the sea-related communication mechanism and handling maritime emergencies, especially the situation on the Ren’ai Jiao (also known as Ren’ai Reef). Assistant Foreign Minister Nong Rong co-chaired the meeting with Philippine Undersecretary Theresa Lazaro. Both sides reiterated that South China Sea disputes do not define the entire bilateral relationship and emphasized the importance of communication and dialogue in maintaining maritime peace and stability. Both sides agreed to enhance the sea-related communication mechanism, manage maritime conflicts and differences through friendly consultations, address maritime emergencies, particularly the situation on the Ren’ai Jiao. Since last year, maritime tensions, primarily centered around Ren’ai Jiao, have escalated between China and the Philippines.
Source: China Military
Chinese Vice Premier Meets Former US Treasury Secretary
Chinese Vice Premier He Lifeng met with former U.S. Secretary of Treasury Timothy Geithner, now chairman of Warburg Pincus, on Thursday in Beijing. The two sides exchanged views on China-U.S. relations, China’s economy, capital markets, and other topics. China will continue to open up to the outside world at a high level, improve the business environment that is market-oriented, law-based, and internationalized, and welcome Warburg Pincus to participate in China’s capital market construction and share development opportunities, He said. Noting that Warburg Pincus has been in China for 30 years and is the earliest global asset management and investment company in China, Geithner said Warburg Pincus will continue to cultivate the Chinese market deeply.
African Nations Give Support To China On Taiwan
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi wrapped up his visit to Africa after meeting a slew of leaders of Egypt, Tunisia, Togo and Cote d’Ivoire from January 13 to 18. The visit continues the tradition of the Chinese foreign minister’s first overseas trip to the African continent every year for 34 years. In today’s volatile world, Africa faces new challenges to its peaceful development and needs China’s support and Africa-China cooperation more than ever, Togolese President Faure Gnassingbe told Wang, during their talks on Wednesday. Regarding the Taiwan question, the four countries expressed their firm support for the one-China principle and vowed to support China in safeguarding national sovereignty and territory al integrity. In turn, Wang said China will also support the four countries in safeguarding national sovereignty and security, and explore development paths that suit their own national conditions.
Chinese Premier Assures World About China’s economic future At Davos
Chinese Premier Li Qiang expressed confidence in the strong growth of the Chinese economy at the World Economic Forum in Davos. The government released new data by the National Bureau of Statistics shows that the Chinese economy beats its growth target with its gross domestic product (GDP) growing 5.2% year on year to 126.06 trillion yuan (US$17.71 trillion). Zhu Min, an eminent economist and vice chairman of China Center for International Economic Exchanges, said at a panel themed on ‘Recharging Growth in China’ in Davos on Wednesday. He stated that the Chinese economy is currently facing cyclical challenges following several decades of robust growth. Due to a range of factors such as an aging population and lower productivity, China’s economic growth seems to be slowing, Zhu said. He shared a study he conducted several years ago, which had anticipated that the growth rate of the Chinese economy would stabilize at around 4.5% by this time. Nevertheless, the performance of the Chinese economy has exceeded his earlier expectations.