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2017-07-10 NEWS Plus Special English
   2017-07-06 14:15:00    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Du Lijun

This is Special English. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing. Here is the news.
China's next generation bullet train "Fuxing" has debuted on the Beijing-Shanghai line.
A train departed Beijing South Railway Station for Shanghai while at the same time, another train left Shanghai for Beijing on June 26th.
The new bullet trains, also known as electric multiple units, boast top speeds of 400 kilometers an hour and a consistent speed of 350 kilometers per hour.
The train was designed and manufactured by China. It includes a sophisticated monitoring system that constantly checks its performance and automatically slows the train in case of emergencies or abnormal conditions.
Thanks to a remote data-transmission system, a control center will be able to monitor the train in real time.
The China Railway Corporation, operator of the new train, says "Fuxing", or rejuvenation, underpins the unique role that high-speed railway has played in China's economic and social development.
Previous bullet trains featured the characters "Hexiehao", or harmony, on the exterior of each train.
China has the world's longest railway network of 22,000 kilometers as of the end of 2016, around 60 percent of the world's total.
The Beijing-Shanghai railway line is China's busiest route, transporting 500,000 passengers daily.
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A private secretary of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has said China has "behaved very responsibly" towards its commitments in the 1984 Sino-British Joint Declaration over the future of Hong Kong.
In a recent interview with China's Xinhua News Agency in London, Lord Charles Powell, the Private Secretary to Thatcher from 1983 to 1989, said the "one country, two systems" framework has been "remarkably good".
Powell was one of the architects of the Joint Declaration which decided the fate of the former British colony. In this key role, Powell had a ringside seat and a steering hand in the discussions around Hong Kong's future over three decades ago.
Powell said he continues to take a very positive view on Hong Kong".
The Hong Kong Special Administrative Region came into being in 1997 when the Chinese territory ceded to Britain in the 19th century was handed back to China after 99 years.
Powell hailed the Joint Declaration, where the Chinese government declared its basic policies regarding Hong Kong and the "one country, two systems" political framework, as "classic and exemplary".
You're listening to Special English. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing.
2017 Summer Davos has closed its annual meeting in northeast China's coastal city Dalian, highlighting technological innovation and inclusive growth for sustainable development.
During the three-day Meeting of the New Champions 2017, more than 2,000 participants including officials and entrepreneurs from over 90 countries and regions shared their insights on economic globalization challenges and new technology.
The meeting was themed "Achieving Inclusive Growth in the Fourth Industrial Revolution". Attendees tried to find ways to achieve a more inclusive style of growth that prioritizes meaningful job creation and sustainable development.
China has vowed to increase access to the service and manufacturing sectors, relax restrictions on foreign ownership, and treat Chinese and foreign companies on an equal basis.
Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said at the opening ceremony of the forum that China will further ease market access in the service and manufacturing sectors. He added that domestic and foreign companies are treated equally in the application of supportive policies.
The meeting highlighted China's economy. China has been a major stabilizer and driving force for the world economy, contributing more than 30 percent of recent growth.
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China's manufacturing sector expanded for the 11th-straight month in June, indicating strength in the world's second largest economy.
China's manufacturing purchasing managers' index, or PMI, came in at 52 in June, up from 51 in May. A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below reflects contraction.
Sub-indices for production and new orders came in at 54 and 53 respectively, up from 53 and 52 last month, indicating accelerated growth in both supply and demand.
External demand also bounced back, with the sub-index for new export orders standing at 52, well above 51 in May. Equipment manufacturing and high-tech manufacturing continued robust growth, suggesting improved industrial structure.
While the overall picture remains positive, some traditional industries including oil processing and coking as well as the nonmetal mineral products industry still face downward pressure.
Meanwhile, over 40 percent of surveyed companies reported tight liquidity for the fourth-consecutive month, indicating that financial services should do more to support the real economy.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing.
Senior diplomats from the Black Sea states have vowed to form a stronger group to better respond to security challenges.
The member states of the Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation have been "committed to a greater role in contributing to the stability, security and sustainable development of the wider Black Sea region.
The secretary general of the organization highlighted the importance of economic cooperation among member states in achieving stability and peace. The Turkish Deputy Foreign Minister laid emphasis on sustainable development in addressing regional challenges.
During the meeting in Istanbul, Turkey handed over the chairmanship-in-office of the organization to Ukraine.
Ukraine has set the main theme of its six-month-long chairmanship as achieving peace, stability and prosperity under the current security conditions of the region.
According to Ukrainian officials, developing economic cooperation in the region, which has been overshadowed by conflicts, lack of trust, and misunderstanding, will be among the primary targets of his country.
The annual intra-trade volume among the regional countries with a total population of 335 million has hit 187 billion U.S. dollars.
The Black Sea Economic Cooperation was founded in 1992, and groups countries including Russia, Romania, Turkey and Ukraine.
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Africa is hopeful to achieve quick development like East Asia did after World War II.
Justin Lin, a professor at Peking University, says that since independence around 1960s, African countries started pursuing modernization, but have been unsuccessful. Lin is the director of the Center for New Structural Economics at Peking University.
Lin said during an interview in the Rwandan city Kigali that if African countries could get assistance from China to improve infrastructure, and at the same time receive labor-intensive industries from China, African countries could hopefully achieve quick development like East Asia made after World War II.
He said this could "change Africa's destiny". Lin is also a former chief economist and senior vice president of the World Bank.
According to Lin, achievements of China-Africa cooperation are emerging. Cooperation projects included Africa's first transnational electrified railway connecting Ethiopia and Djibouti and Mombasa-Nairobi standard gauge railway in Kenya. China is also providing assistance to Africa in the areas of roads and electricity. The projects help poverty eradication in Africa and remove development bottlenecks in Africa.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing. You can access the program by logging on to crienglish.com. You can also find us on our Apple Podcast. Now the news continues.
A fungal disease that had killed wild snakes in North America has been found for the first time in Europe.
Experts at the Zoological Society of London, based at London Zoo, warned that Europe's wild snakes could face a growing threat from the fungal skin disease that has contributed to wild snake deaths in North America.
They base their findings on an international collaborative study, led by the Zoological Society of London, alongside partners including the U.S. Geological Survey. The new study has been published in the journal Scientific Reports.
The snake fungal disease can lead to symptoms including skin lesions, scabs and crusty scales, which can contribute to the death of the infected animal in some cases.
The disease was first recognized in wild snakes in eastern North America around a decade ago, but prior to the new study, the only wild populations found to be affected had been those in the central and eastern United States.
Now, an analysis of samples collected from wild snakes in the United Kingdom and the Czech Republic between 2010 and 2016 has confirmed the presence of the pathogen and the disease in Europe for the first time.
While the disease poses no known risk to humans or livestock, scientists are calling for further research to fully understand the significance of the disease to Europe's snake populations.
This is Special English.
For every one degree Celsius increase in global temperatures, the U.S. economy will experience a 1.2 percent loss in its gross domestic product on average.
A new study says that importantly, risk is distributed unequally across locations in the country. The study was published in the U.S. journal Science.
States in the country's South and lower Midwest, which tend to be poor and hot already, will lose the most, with economic opportunity traveling northward and westward.
Colder and richer counties along the northern border and in the Rockies could benefit the most as health, agriculture, and energy costs are projected to improve.
By the late 21st century, the poorest third of counties could sustain economic damages costing as much as 20 percent of their income if warming proceeds unabated.
The study found that unmitigated climate change will be very expensive for huge regions of the United States. If the country continues on the current path, the analysis indicates it may result in the largest transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich in the country's history.
In a bid to settle the debate over whether climate change will help or hurt the U.S. economy, the new study used state-of-the-art statistical methods and 116 climate projections developed by scientists around the world to price the impacts of climate change.
The team of economists and climate scientists calculated how agriculture, crime, health, energy demand, labor and coastal communities will be affected by higher temperatures, changing rainfall, rising seas and intensifying hurricanes.
You're listening to Special English. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing.
A new study found that South Asian women giving birth in Australia are more likely to experience stillbirth.
The study, done by the Hudson Institute of Medical Research in collaboration with Monash University, analyzed more than 700,000 births in Victoria State between 2000 and 2011.
Of those studied there were 2,300 cases of stillbirth, representing less than 0.5 percent, where stillbirth was defined as foetal death at, or after, 20 weeks of pregnancy.
Miranda Davies-Tuck, lead researcher from the Hudson Institute of Medical Research, said her team found that women from South Asian countries giving birth were 27 percent more likely to experience stillbirth than women from Australia.
She said the study should act as a warning for pregnant South Asian women to undergo surveillance for risks earlier than previously recommended.
The risk of stillbirth for a South Asian mother at 39 weeks was equivalent to an Australian-born mother at 41 weeks and that's when doctors would normally start to offer intervention because of the risk.
She said Australia needs to make sure that it is tailoring care to all women who are giving birth in Australian hospitals.
Researchers also found that the rate of stillbirth in African and Middle Eastern-born women was five in 1, 000 compared to just three in 1,000 for women born in Australia and New Zealand.
This is Special English.
Two giant panda cubs in Macao have celebrated their first birthday.
This is also the first time they have met the public together with their mother.
The twin brothers sat on the ground, eating their birthday cakes made of bamboo, while visitors watched them with joy and ecstasy behind the glass windows.
Visitors sang songs and chanted Happy Birthday to the pandas in Cantonese.
The two panda cubs weigh around 23 and 22 kilograms respectively. The younger one has gained much weight as it was only 53 grams at birth.
The pandas are still in the baby stage and feed mainly on breast milk and milk powder. They are starting to learn from their mother's behavior including picking up bamboo.
The brothers and their parents will be open to the public in Macao every afternoon during the summer holiday.
That is the end of this edition of Special English. To freshen up your memory, I'm going to read one of the news items again at normal speed. Please listen carefully.
That is the end of today's program. I'm Mark Griffiths in Beijing, and I hope you will join us every day, to learn English and learn about the world.


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