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than 150 countries, including 37 heads of state or government, for the thre
e-day event starting on Thursday, Wang said, adding the forum, themed “Belt and Road Coop
eration: Shaping a Brighter Shared Future”, aims to bring about high-quality cooperation under the initiative.
President Xi Jinping will deliver a keynote speech at the op
ening ceremony of the forum, and chair the leaders’ round-table summit, Wang said.
Saying the BRI has delivered real benefits to participating countries, Wang stated the hats like “debt traps” cannot be put onto t
he head of the Belt and Road, and this is not something any participating country would recognize.
He added that international communities should base their understandings and comments about the BRI on the facts.
Trade volume between China and the countries participating in the B
RI has exceeded $6 trillion, the number of investment is over $80 billion and arou
nd 300,000 jobs have been created for the people from the countries involved in the initiative, Wang said.
China and the United States have made new progress in negotiating the text of an econom
ic and trade deal, but much work remains to be done, the Ministry of Commerce said on Thursday.
Negotiating teams from the two countries are hashing out the text of the deal, including
an enforcement mechanism, on the basis of mutual respect and benefit, said Gao Feng, ministry spokesman.
The remarks came as the world’s two biggest economies have been i
ntensifying their consultations and aiming to break the deadlock in a timely manner.
In the most recent round of trade consultations, the negotiators discussed technolo
gy transfers, protection of intellectual property rights, nontariff measures, the service sector, agriculture, tra
de imbalances and enforcement mechanisms, according to earlier reports.
The American Chamber of Commerce in China said in a recent white paper that the US business commu
nity in China, long an advocate of good bilateral relations, can no longer be relied on to be a positive anchor.
An inferno that destroyed the spire and a large portion of the wooden roof structure of the 12th-century Notre Dame Cathedral in Pa
ris on Monday reinforced a cautionary message to Chinese authorities about the need to better protect vulnerable heritage sites.
The National Cultural Heritage Administration held a staff meeting on Tuesday night at wh
ich officials discussed the Paris fire and six major fires that have taken place at Chinese cultural heritage sites this year.
“The fire at Notre Dame in Paris rang the warning bell for us,” Song Xi
nchao, deputy director of the administration, said in an interview on Tuesday.
“The safety of cultural heritage sites is a red line that can never be crossed. It’s a global issue,” he said.
The six fires were in Sichuan, Fujian, Jiangxi, and Zhejiang provinces, officials said.
On Jan 6, a hall at Yunyan Temple in Jiangyou, Sichuan province, burned down. On
Feb 2, a wooden family temple from the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) in Nanchang, Jiangxi, was destroyed by fire.
ltancy, said: “The lawsuit against Liu will bring damages to the image and reputation of JD, hav
e an impact on investors’ confidence, and cause fluctuations in its share price. Moreover, emp
loyees’ trust in the company may also be affected as the Beijing-based tech heavyweight is laying off staff to cut costs.”
Shen Meng, director of boutique investment bank Chanson & Co, said Liu’s case won’t chan
ge his actual control over JD, which is now making some innovations to reassure investors. Liu owns
15.8 percent of JD’s stock and controls nearly 80 percent of the company’s voting rights.
Liu was detained in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on suspicion of criminal sexual c
onduct on Aug 31 and later released without charge or bail. He returned to China on Sept 3.
In December, Hennepin County Attorney’s Office, the prosecutorial office handling the case announced that no sexual as
sault charges would be brought against Liu as prosecutors could not prove his guilt beyond reasonable doubt.