Conflict also disrupts growth. Although many conflic

icts appear to have a religious or ethnic basis, some scholars believe their root cause may be economic, with ethnic divisio

s serving as a way to exclude other groups from access to scarce resources and opportunities. Whatever its so

urce, inequality of opportunity has a highly disruptive effect on governance and hence growth.

But these obstacles are not insurmountable. For one th

ing, developing countries now have huge potential export markets in middle-inc

ome countries, and no longer depend entirely on advanced economies for access to global markets.

Belt and Road can play vital development role

There is also a renewed awareness of the importance of infrastructure in e

nabling growth. In addition to roads, railways and ports, electricity and digital conn

ectivity are crucial. In this regard, the rapid expansion of cellular wireless technology, combined with the install

ation of high-capacity undersea broadband pipes around Africa, represents major prog

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This issue is similar to the environment. External critics

ent. External critics of China don’t appreciate that Chinese themselves realize there

are issues to be addressed. They are doing so. These developments should be encouraged.”

President Xi Jinping, who spoke at the Second Belt and Road Foru

m for International Cooperation in Beijing recen

tly, listed areas in which China will improve the environment for foreign investment.

The president said the nation will work hard to create a business environ

ment that respects the value of intellectual prop

erty, will improve the legal system for IPR protection at all levels, will strengthen law enforcement and pr

otection for the legitimate rights and interests of foreign IP owners and will bar the

forced transfer of technology, improve protection of trade secrets and crack down on infringement.

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The General Office of the State Council will take cha

e charge of the task, according to the decree signed by Premier Li Keqiang.

All government services, unless otherwise specified by laws and regulations or involving state secrets, shall

be processed online in line with the procedures determined by the State Council, the decree noted.

Government service providers must not require enterprises or ind

ividuals to submit information that is already acces

sible through information sharing. Neither are they allo

wed to put the submitted information to other uses.

The decree also confirms the legal validity of electronic signatures, seals, certificates and archives.

The decree came into effect the day it was made public.

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Before the drug was available on the Chinese mai

nland, there was little effective therapy for the disease, and patients depended mainly on treat

ment such as respiratory and nutrition supports, said Xiong Hui, Beijing Medical Association rare disease c

ommittee member and Peking University First Hospital deputy director of pediatrics.

Spinraza debuted on the Chinese mainland having been fast-tracked through the marke

t approval process for rare disease drugs, which, available overseas since July, are urgently needed in China.

The drug began the approval process in September and was issued a license in February.

Premier Li Keqiang said in February that the government will step up efforts to gua

rantee more than 20 million rare disease patients have access to required medication.

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Premier Li signs revised regulation on gov’t informati

Premier Li Keqiang has signed a revised regulation on the disclosure

of government information to better respond to public concerns.

The revision, based on the 2008 version, is aimed at increasing openness of government

affairs and resolving prominent problems in government information disclosure.

It also represents the headway and achievements made in this field over the past years and clarified the scope of governm

ent information disclosure, calling for constantly expanding information disclosure.

Stressing the need to improve the legal rights and interests of the a

pplicants and related parties when applying for information disclosure in accordance with pr

ocedures, the revision also made necessary stipulations on the improper exercise of application rights by a small num

ber of applicants affecting the normal conduct of government information disclosure.

Efforts should be made to improve the effectiveness of government information disclosure by using information techn

ology, to enable government information to play its due role in serving the people, it added.

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Fourth, the daunting challenges that China faces at this po

point in its economic development are far more important than whether its slowdown is

a gap or a trap. What comes after the catch-up to advanced economies operating on the technological frontier? This

is where China’s stated goal of shifting from imported to indigenous innovation comes in. Middle-versus high-inco

me status is a relative comparison for developing economies seeking to operate on that frontier. Notwithstanding the

temporary effects of periodic exogenous disturbances-such as deleveraging, global slowdowns, or even trad

e wars-catching up to the frontier and joining others pushing to move beyond it is the ultimate reward of economic development. That goal is ensh

rined in President Xi Jinping’s aspiration for China to achieve high-income status by 2050.

And fifth, productivity growth is far more important than GDP gro

wth in determining a country’s development prospects. As such, I would be far more wor

ried about China falling into a productivity trap than a GDP growth trap. A new study on total factor prod

uctivity (TFP) by a team of Chinese researchers offers some comfort here. Like the work of Pritchett and Summers, thi

s latest assessment of Chinese TFP growth reveals several discontinuities over the past 40 years.

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In a spectacular display of indecision, the House of Comm

ons has voted against remaining in the EU and every version of leaving the EU,” tweeted James Cleverly, the Conservative Party’s deputy chairman.

Nevertheless, some proposals fared better than May’s deal had done two weeks ago, and parlia

ment was due to hold more indicative votes on Monday after refining the options most likely to secure a majority.

Many Conservative eurosceptics had made clear they would only c

onsider supporting May’s deal if she gave a firm commitment to resign, hoping a new leader

would be more sympathetic to their views when negotiating the terms of Britain’s future relationship with the EU.

“I have heard very clearly the mood of the parliamentary party,” May told a meeting of Conservative lawmakers (MPs).

“I know there is a desire for a new approach – and new lead

ership – in the second phase of the Brexit negotiations – and I won’t stand in the way of that.”

But within hours of May’s offer, the Democratic Unionist Party, which props up her minority gov

ernment, said it would vote against the deal if May brought it back a third time.

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I’m happy to hear that the government will continue to pro

mote the reform and opening-up. There are many things in the pipeline for foreign direct i

nvestment. The government plans to allow many companies in different kinds of sectors. In this

upcoming session, the new law regarding foreign direct investment will be discussed. I believe more Sudanese co

mpanies will be allowed to come to China and more Chinese companies will go to Sudan.

I noticed many important things mentioned in today’s report. It talk

s about employment, the protection of the environment, the opening-up of the Chin

ese economy and external trade, which are very impressive. As an ambassador, I wish success to the Chin

ese government in the coming year and I’d like to see more Chinese investors invest in Tunisia.

When it comes to the opening-up of the financial sector, the bond mark

et, the development of multi-tier capital market, the continued emphasis on controlling lev

erage, I think those are some of the issues that we are very interested in. And we are going to study the report.

We haven’t seen the final version of the Foreign Investment Law yet. We

will look at it. But further opening up, especially related to service sector, is very imp

ortant. I think it will bring big benefits for China and big benefits to all the countries in the world.

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Trump, who has faced backlash for saying he took Kim’s

  word that the North Korean leader was unaware of former prisoner Otto Warmbier’s c

apture, said Saturday that he was torn between his obligation to negotiate and his support for the Warmbiers.

  ”I’m in such a horrible position,” Trump said. “Because in one way I have to negotiate. In

the other way, I love Mr. and Mrs. Warmbier. And I love Otto. And it’s a very, very delicate balance.”

  Democrats and socialism

  Trump also accused congressional Democrats of accepting socialism and trying to “replac

e individual rights with total government domination” during the speech.

  ”Just this week more than 100 Democrats in Congress signed up for a socialist takeover of Am

erican health care,” he said, apparently referencing the Medicare For All bill currently supported by many House Democrats.

  Trump said that the plan “would lead to colossal tax increases” and “take away private covera

ge from over 180 million Americans,” as opposed to the private plans and new cooperative plan backed by hi

s administration “where you get better insurance than Obamacare for a fraction of the cost.”

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working well,” presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom said

In Pyongyang, Biegun and Kim Hyok Chol, DPRK’s special representative for US affairs, discussed “advancing Trump and Kim’s

Singapore summit commitments of complete denuclearization, transforming US-(DPRK)

relations, and building a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula,” the US State Department said in a statement.

Trump and Kim met for their first summit in Singapore last June, during which Kim pledged to work toward the “co

mplete denuclearization” of the Korean Peninsula, without providing a clear timetable or roadmap.

US-led diplomacy aimed at getting the DPRK to abandon its nuclear program in return for outside concessions has since made little headway.

Calling the AU a banner that unites the African countries to pursue self-renewal, Xi praised th

e integration process of the continent and the great headway made since last year under the guidance of the organization.

African countries continue to speak with a united voice on important internatio

nal and regional issues, and the international influence of the continent keeps rising,

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