Starbucks to drop plastic straws in Chinaplastic

Coffeehouse chain Starbucks started offering strawless sipping li

ds and paper straws instead of plastic straws on Monday in almost 1,000 outlets in Sh

anghai and Shenzhen on a trial basis, Beijing Youth Daily reported.

The eco-friendly initiative will be carried out in all Starbucks stores across China by the end of this year, fulfilling the comp

any’s promise of phasing out straws in its stores worldwide by 2020 ahead of schedule, according to Starbucks China.

Starbucks will replace plastic straws with recyclable strawless sippin

g lids for cold drinks without whipped cream and offer pap

er straws for beverages like Frappuccino, iced mocha and iced shaken peach green tea.

Starbucks is not alone. McDonald’s trialed

replacing plastic straws with strawless lids and only providing straws on request from the customer in 10 store

s in Beijing in November 2018, encouraging customers to reduce strawuse.

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More and more students are learning the Chinese cul

ulture and language through the exchange program which

is vital for our economic, cultural, education ties and growth, she added.

Political Counselor of the Chinese Embassy in Namibia Yang Jun said lan

guage is the bridge for a win-win situation and enhancing Namibia-China relations.

“The education cooperation begins with language learning and tr

aining. It starts in the classrooms and ends in people’s hearts,” he added.

UNAM’s Confucius Institute this year enrolled more than 700 stu

dents, setting a new record. The institute also opened four

more Chinese learning centers in the city of Walvis Bay, Windhoek, and Swakopmund.

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Meanwhile, more than 8,000 officials were punishe

 after inspectors’ revisits to ensure rectification of violations they had found earlier.

Liu Changgen, director of the central environmental inspection office, said the fourth round of in

spections is the first to have more punished officials from land resources departments than from the ecolo

gical and environmental departments, which topped the list in the earlier rounds.

“Many may think the ecological and environment departments should top the list, as they shoulder

more of the responsibilities in environmental protection. But officials at various levels of the ec

ological and environmental departments have had their awareness in environmental protection strengthened in the

past few years, which has helped them better assume their responsibilities,” Liu said.

He said he expects to see increasingly strengthened awareness of protection in other departments, too.

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The courts, based in 19 cities, including Hefei, are desi

igned to be responsible for handling not only local IPR ca

ses but also those from neighboring regions,” Song said.

In 2014, the supreme court released a guideline to introduce tech

nical investigators into the procedure of judging IPR cases. An earlier document releas

ed by the local court in Hefei last year said it would recruit both full-time and part-time technical investigators.

More full-time technical investigators are expected to be recruited for IPR cases in the future, researcher Li said.

Editor’s Note: China on Monday published a report elaborating on the progress, contrib

utions and prospects of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). The document, prepared by the office of the leadi

ng group for promoting the BRI, was released ahead of the second Belt and Road Forum for Inte

rnational Cooperation to be held from April 25 to 27 in Beijing. Full text below:Contents

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Li Shunde, a senior intellectual property researcher at

at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, applau

ded the campaign as a timely and necessary step to regulate those providing stock images.

“We should abide by laws and litigation to protect copyright in

stead of abusing them to profit improperly,” he said.

On April 15, the Shanghai Observer reported that the company, which was founde

d in June 2000 and partners with the photo agency Getty Images in the United States, had faced increased co

pyright-related disputes since it set up a special rights protection division in 2016.

The company was involved 2,279 cases in 2017 and 1,908 last year, the report said, adding that most court rulings had been in its favor.

A search by China Daily for the company’s name on China J

udgments Online, a website operated by the Supreme People’s Court that discloses ve

rdicts, resulted in more than 1,600 lawsuits being found, most of them related to copyright.

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Although the scandal involving Visual China Group e

exposed disordered copyright management by stock-image providers, legal

professionals said the increased efforts to protect copyright should be applauded.

For example, the National Copyright Administration has launched crackdowns against pira

ted works every year, aiming to increase copyright protection through administrative measures.

Last year, it took online short videos, audio material, literary articles and music as major target

s. It eliminated 1.85 million web links with content that infringed copyright, and confiscated 1.23 million pirated works.

Wang, the Beijing lawyer, said he appreciated governme

nt attempts to protect copyright, but said such efforts are still insufficient.

He called for the country to improve copyright-related laws as soon as poss

ible, and especially to issue a specific rule for footage, pictures or other photographic works.

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rists from China view cherry blossoms from a boat in Kyo

hen Zeyong, CEO of online visa service tigerwing.cn, said the Jap

anese government issued 7 million visa stickers for Chinese nationals last year.

“If visas become a bar code or QR code emailed to applicants, their w

orkload will be greatly lessened,” he said during the Shanghai World Travel Fair on Thursday.

Japan Tourism Agency data showed that 8.38

million tourists from the Chinese mainland trave

led to Japan in 2018, representing year-on-year growth of 13.9 per

cent and contributing nearly 27 percent of international tourists.

China has been the world‘s largest source of tourists since 2014, reachin

g nearly 150 million last year, according the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

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Online visa applications smooth traveChina DailyUpd

Increasing number of countries going digital when reviewing documents

An increasing number of countries have tapped into the convenience of e-visas to at

tract more tourists from China, the world’s largest source of outbound tourists.

According to tourism insiders, the Japanese embassy in Beijing sa

id on Thursday during a meeting with local travel agencies that it will launch e-visa serv

ices on May 1, allowing applicants to submit their materials online instead of sending paper documents.

“The embassy said that e-visa services may be available in consulates in other Chinese cities next year,” said H

an Zhisu, co-founder and CEO of 666visa.cn, a dome

stic platform where visa applicants can submit materials.Chen Zeyong, CEO of online visa service tigerwing.cn, said the

Japanese government issued 7 million visa stickers for Chinese nationals last year.

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The inland class truly taught me a lot about many new thi

she said. As a fan of music, Tsering was once a singer in a bar and released two singles in Tibetan.

In 2017, she went on a popular talent show called Sing! China and became a sensation in the music industry thanks to her un

ique style of music. Before Tsering, there were no other Tibetan contestants on the show, she said.

“People thought Tibetan singers were all about ethnic music, but I wanted to break that stereotype,” she said.

Liu Hua, with Qinghai’s Ethnic and Religious Affairs Committee, said China’s favorable eth

nic policies not only brought quality education to students in ethnic areas but also changed their lives.

“These graduates are using their wide range of knowledge and ima

ges to influence people around them and generations to come,” Liu said.

lack of skilled workers and the poor educational foundation in the Tibet autonomous region, the government decide

d to offer classes to Tibetan children. In 1985, the first batch of them went inland to study. Since then, an incr

easing number have pursued studies in more developed areas in China.Tsering Lhakyi, born in the 1990s, was ra

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The 40-year-old Wang Xing, chairman and CEO of M

eituan Dianping, China’s leading on-demand online service provider, is the youngest among China’s 10 most powerful businesspeople, according to the list.

Dong Mingzhu, chairwoman of Gree Electric Appliances, a major home appliances maker

based in Zhuhai, Guangdong province, is the only woman entrepreneur on the top 10 ranking, placing seventh.

Xu Jiayin (Hui Ka Yan), chairman of China’s property developer Evergrande Gro

up, and Lei Jun, founder of smartphone maker Xiaomi Group, also made the top 10.

The China Consumers Association said Wednesday that financial servi

ces in automobile sales should be clearly priced and forced transactions eliminated.

The association held a discussion Wednesday morning on the issues of fina

ncial service fees in automobile sales and car buyers’ difficulties defending their rights.

The discussion concluded that car dealers fabricate required ite

ms to increase consumers’ payments and fail to provide receipts or other certificates.

When disputes over quality arise, consumers often experience difficulties negotiating with dealers or lodging complaints.

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