One of the goals of Pompeo’s visit is to rebuild the political

relationship between the US and Central and Eastern Europe. The US will also launch a Future Leaders Ex

change Program, providing one-year academic scholarships for Hungarian high school students to study in the US.

There are many aspects to US strategic return to Central and Eastern Europe. First, the US can

enhance energy cooperation with the region. The regional countries would prefer not to become overly dependent on Russia.

The US has already voiced strong opposition to the energy cooperation between Germany and Russia via the Nord Stream 2 project.

Given that the US is set to become a net energy exporting country in 2020, it could become a major source of energy for Central and Eastern European countries.

Second, the US will strengthen political cooperation with Central and Eastern European countries.

The region has undertaken multifaceted diplomacy, hoping to win more policy initiatives in tod

ay’s volatile geopolitical dynamic. As they receive less political and economic promises from the EU, they are turning to e

xternal powers such as China and Russia. The US wants to get back in as quickly as possible to make up for its absence.

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Sci-fi blockbuster showcases Chinese vision of cooperation

China’s sci-fi blockbuster The Wandering Earth broke Chinese film’s five-year box office record on th

e North American market. Based on the novel by Liu Cixin, the movie is said to usher in China’s sci-fi blockbuster era.

Does this film resonate simply because it is a good sci-fi film made by Chinese? Of course not. It is mainly because the story reflects the co

mmon concern of people of different color, belief and nationality in the world. That is: the fate of the Earth. We

share a common destiny because we are living in the same global village. The movie has struck a responsive chord in the hearts of its audiences.

American sci-fi filmmakers have a prolonged enthusiasm about the fate of the Earth from the early stage to recent years.

From The Day of the Earth Stood Still in the 1950s to Armageddon (1998) and MegaFault (2009), a long list can be m

ade. Of course, the heroes who saved the planet were all Americans without exception. But this time it is Chinese.

The Wandering Earth shows that Chinese people are sentimentally attached to their mother pl

anet and foreigners feel the same. Indeed, Chinese people offered their own solution in the film. But in fact, the

success of The Wandering Earth is not who saved the planet, but people resolving a severe problem faced by mankind.

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Guo Fan, director of The Wandering Earth, once said that a

film is a reflection of a nation’s comprehensive strength.” The Guardian published an article headlined “China challenges Hollywood with own sci-fi blockbuster.”

This is in line with how people see today’s global affairs. China is making contributions to global development with its own strength and its own way.

Different from the US sci-fi blockbusters which advocate individual heroism, The Wandering Earth pro

poses China’s collective spirit. Take the climax of the movie: When all the plans to save Earth faile

d and Earth is about to hit Jupiter, many other countries, which had decided to give up, were moved and inspired by a br

ave Chinese girl. They then chose to salvage Earth from its doom together with Chines

e. Such a Chinese blockbuster presents a new appearance of sci-fi and successfully moves audiences of different countries.

Likewise, the key to improving the world’s understanding of China is to find a

n echo in each other’s hearts. Today, mankind still faces many international hot

issues, such as environmental protection, anti-terrorism and the reconstruction of the world financial o

rder. To solve these problems, we need global participation and cooperation, and China should play a constructive role.

These problems are also common challenges facing China and the US. Both Chi

na and the US should take their responsibilities. The two countries are mo

re likely to cooperate on these issues which could be the basis for building mutual trust.

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ntal programs and inaugurated several large-scale infrast

projects, including highway, railway, airport and power stations. However, in the face of local protests, the effectiveness of Modi’s economic package, delivered just a few months before the

election, seemed very suspicious. Interestingly, because of the tremendous opposition against the Bill and the frustrating situation on the g

round, BJP’s top local politician who was defending the bill changed his tune almost as soon as Modi left.

Clearly, Modi’s twin election trick, which comprised both nationalistic and developmental ele

ments, was clearly at work during his visit to disputed South Tibet. However, sacrificing the pa

instakingly earned mutual trust and progress in Sino-Indian relations for the sake of ephemeral political benefits seems unwise.

Even though India and China have so far held 21 rounds of talks to resolve the border dispute, and Modi and President Xi have met at least four times in 2018 to bring b

ilateral ties back on a stable footing, the border issue remains the single-most sensitive topic between the two countries. While

the dispute between China and India remains too large to be resolved altogether, both sides would better carefully manage it.

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Globalization needs to be upgraded to serve the interes

In recent years, a rising number of people have realized “the world is undergoing profound changes unseen in a century.” It was more pronounced in 20

18. Some phenomena that people are familiar with are changing direction. The head winds globalization is facing is one example.

Implied meanings of certain words describing key concepts are going the opposite way. For exam

ple, public opinion in some countries is moving against globalization and globalism. Why does this happen?

In the UN General Assembly in September 2018, almost the whole world heard US President Donald Trump’s comp

laint on globalism, which was hard to imagine previously. Terms like “globalism,” “global governance”, which wer

e popular in Western politics, are not hot any more in their birthplace. Is this a time to abandon globalism?

It is expected that “globalization,” “globalism” and “global governance” will see a winter prior to their revival. Not lo

ng ago, World Bank President Jim Yong-kim abruptly resigned, three years before the end of his term. The reason w

as said to be Trump’s dislike for the World Bank and his belief that the international lender is

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Both sides had specific discussions about a memorandum

of understanding on bilateral economic and trade issues, Xinhua reported. The two sides said they will step up their work

within the time limit for consultations set by both heads of state, and strive for consensus.

Vice-Premier Liu He, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin headed the talks.

After tit-for-tat exchanges of hefty import tariffs, China and the US agreed in December to halt new ta

riffs for 90 days to allow for talks. Since then, the world’s two largest economies have conducted i

ntense negotiations on a wide array of topics, such as trade and structural issues.

Wei Jianguo, vice-president of the China Center for International Economic Ex

changes, said China and the US have maintained close contacts in recent m

onths, which reflects their positive desire to solve genuine problems and foster cooperation.

Wei, a former vice-minister of commerce, underlined the importance of conducting rule-based negotiations and seeking win-win solutions.

Diao Daming, associate professor at Renmin University of China’s School of International Studies, said the world’s two la

rgest economies can deliver positive results in future trade talks to allay global concerns.

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he story has caused an uproar in Sweden. Gui made it clear that

she would not keep quiet in exchange for various conditions and the Western media is backing her stand. The Swedish Mi

nistry of Foreign Affairs said it already launched an internal investigation into Lindstedt, who had been appointed for an

other position in the Swedish government in March. Lindstedt has now been recalled to her country.

Is Angela Gui telling the truth? The Chinese Embassy in Sweden has responded that China has never and will never authorize

anyone to be in contact with her. China handled Gui’s case in accordance with the law and legal p

rocedures. People need to be aware of Angela’s unique position as Gui Minhai’s daughter; and, considering her lack of ex

perience in distinguishing complex issues, it is necessary for people to be cautious about her story.

However, the role of Ambassador Lindstedt is also part of this. If she did arrange a meeting between Angela Gui a

nd the Chinese businessmen not authorized by Beijing, then we can make the following analysis.

First, there are domestic groups in Sweden that hope the relationship between Sweden and China will not be a

ffected by Gui’s incident in the long term. They are willing to facilitate public discussions between Stockholm and B

eijing on this matter. Ambassador Lindstedt herself is a representative of such groups.

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Hopefully, the discussions over the past three month

hs have helped both sides to better understand each other’s concerns and fostered greater mutual trust.

That the feel-good atmosphere that has prevailed since the January discussions in Washington has been mai

ntained by this round of talks was evident as the negotiations are to continue in the US capital next week. This welcome dev

elopment was confirmed by Xi, who said he hoped the discussions would carry forward the positive momentum as i

t conformed to the interests of both countries to strengthen their cooperation.

Although it is probably too hasty to interpret from this that a deal is imminent given s

ome of the US demands, it is to be hoped that the just-concluded negotiations have laid the groundwork for

next week’s discussions to establish a framework for a resolution to the trade dispute, so that a meeting between Xi and T

rump, which is regarded as necessary to finalize any deal, can be scheduled for this purpose as soon as possible.

New progress on the outstanding difficult issues is imperative as the trade frictions have not been good for either country, despite claims to the contrary.

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Lai Xiaomin charged with bribery, corruption and bigamy

ai Xiaomin, former China Huarong Asset Management board chairman, has been charged with bribery, corruption and bigamy, the Supreme People’s Procuratorate said on Friday.

China Huarong is one of the country’s four largest State-own asset management companies.

It is alleged that Lai exploited various professional positions, including head of the Huarong

corporation and director-general of the banking supervision department of the People’s Bank of China.

While in these positions, it is claimed that he asked for and received significant benefits in exc

hange for “aid”, according to a press release from the SPP, the country’s top prosecuting authority.

It also alleged that Lai was in illegal possession of a large number of public properties, a

nd that he was living as husband and wife with a woman other than his wife, the release said.

Lai, 56, was placed under investigation by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) o

f the Communist Party of China in April last year for “serious violations of disciplinary rules

and laws”, and was expelled from the Party and removed from public office six months later.

The CCDI said he violated political disciplines and State financial policies to blindly expand the c

ompany and operate it in a disorderly manner, resulting in it deviating from its primary tasks and business.

Lai, a Jiangxi province native, started his career at the People’s Bank of China in July 1983, and went on

to hold key positions at the China Banking Regulatory Commission and Beijing Banking Regulatory Bureau.

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tal transformation”, there is already a victory sign coming fro

The country generated about 7.6ZB data last year, around 0.7ZB more than the US, the report said.

In addition, it said data created and replicated in China is expected to outpace the global average by 3 percent annually.

Chinese tech companies, such as Alibaba Group and Tencent Holdings Ltd, h

ave set an example in using data to improve customer service in the financial sector.

The report said Chinese digital payment platforms Alipay and WeChat Pay are able to provide personalize

d financial services tailored to customers’ specific behaviors and preferences with the help of massive user data.

The report also mentioned the use of personal information has raised concerns as data may be utilized to build beh

aving or responding models of users that can be taken advantage of by advertisers or for other purposes.

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