China's global policies
LATEST UPDATE: December 30, 2019 - 2:34pm
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December 30, 2019

A Chinese court on Monday sentenced the doctor who claimed to be behind the world's first gene-edited babies to three years in prison for illegal medical practice, state media reports.

He Jiankui, who shocked the scientific community last year by announcing the birth of twins whose genes had allegedly been altered to confer immunity to HIV, was also fined 3 million yuan ($430,000), Xinhua news agency says.

He was sentenced by a court in Shenzhen for "illegally carrying out the human embryo gene-editing intended for reproduction," Xinhua says. — AFP

December 23, 2019

Beijing will lower import tariffs on over 850 products including frozen pork from January next year, China's finance ministry says, which may help ease the pressure on the country's depleted pork supply.

China has been hit by a severe pork shortage after African Swine Fever tore through the country's pig herds. More than a million pigs have been culled due to the disease, according to official statistics, and prices of the staple meat have more than doubled.

Monday's announcement said tariffs on frozen pork will drop from 12 percent to 8 percent from January 1. — AFP

October 9, 2019

China decries a US decision to restrict visas for Chinese officials linked to the repression of Xinjiang Muslims and calls on Washington to withdraw the measure.

The US is "disregarding the facts, slandering and smearing China on Xinjiang-related issues," foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang says at a regular press conference, where he adds that the US actions were guided by "sinister intentions." — AFP

September 23, 2019

China voices support for negotiations between the US and Taliban after Chinese officials met the Afghan militants in Beijing, two weeks after US President Donald Trump called off talks on a proposed deal with the insurgents.

Foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang says China "hopes that the United States and the Afghan Taliban will maintain the momentum of negotiations."

Geng also says Beijing "supports the internal dialogue and negotiations among the Afghans in order to achieve national reconciliation, peace and stability at an early date."

September 16, 2019

Taiwan severs ties with the Solomon Islands after learning the Pacific nation had decided to switch diplomatic recognition to China, a decision it described as "extremely regrettable."

"The cabinet of the Solomon Islands government decided to switch diplomatic relations to the People's Republic of China," foreign minister Joseph Wu announces at a press conference in Taipei on Monday.

"The government hereby declares the termination of diplomatic relations with the Solomon Islands with immediate effect," he adds. — AFP 

September 3, 2019

China denies it was to blame for fentanyl deaths in the United States after President Donald Trump accused Beijing of reneging on its promise to crack down on the opioid.

US authorities have long accused China of being the main source of the potent drug, which caused 32,000 overdose deaths in the United States last year alone.

In an apparent gesture to Washington amid the US-China trade war, Beijing announced a crackdown on fentanyl earlier this year, designating all analogs of the drug as controlled substances from May 1. — AFP

August 7, 2019

China's national film board orders mainland directors and stars to boycott Asia's top cinema awards in Taiwan, as relations between Beijing and the self-ruled democratic island worsen.

Taiwan's Golden Horse Awards, dubbed the "Chinese Oscars," ran into trouble with mainland authorities last year after a Taiwanese winner called for the island's independence in an acceptance speech.

Beijing sees Taiwan as part of its territory awaiting unification, even though the two sides have been ruled separately since the end of a civil war in 1949. But it is unclear whether the speech incident was linked to the latest boycott.

August 6, 2019

China's central bank says it is "resolutely opposed" to the US labeling Beijing a currency manipulator as trade tensions surge between the world's two biggest economies. 

"The US side disregarded the facts and unreasonably labelled China a 'currency manipulator,'" the central bank says in a statement.

"The Chinese side is resolutely opposed to this," the bank says.

The Chinese currency steadied on Tuesday, August 6, a day after Beijing let the yuan plunge below the key 7.0 per dollar threshold.

August 5, 2019

The Chinese yuan falls to its lowest level against the dollar since August 2010 in morning trade on Monday, fuelling speculation that Beijing is allowing currency depreciation to counter threatened US tariffs.

The offshore currency weakens to 7.1085 to the dollar, days after US President Donald Trump announced a plan to impose fresh tariffs on another $300 billion in Chinese goods, sharpening trade war tensions between the world's two biggest economies.

The onshore yuan also tumbles, hitting 7.0307 in Monday morning trade to reach its lowest level since 2008. Both the onshore and offshore yuan breached the 7.0 level against the dollar, which investors see as a key threshold in currency value.

July 31, 2019

China will stop issuing individual travel permits to Taiwan "due to current relations," the tourism ministry says, amid growing tensions between the Communist-led mainland and the self-ruled democratic island.

The program had allowed Chinese citizens in 47 mainland cities to apply for permits to visit Taiwan on their own instead of visiting on group tours.


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