Tuesday, Apr 25, 2017, 6:57 AM CST – China

News Brief

Top Story

German President Visits China

At the invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping, German President Joachim Gauck made his first official visit to China from March 20 to 24.

As a former civil rights activist in East Germany and a passionate advocate for democracy and freedom of speech, Gauck’s visit to China has drawn significant attention from the international community. Media groups reported that back in March 2014, when Xi traveled to Germany, Gauck spoke with him about human rights issues in China. Xi invited him to visit and see the country for himself.

Gauck did not dodge sensitive issues during his time in the Middle Kingdom – he even brought human rights commissioner Bärbel Kofler with him. According to Germany’s presidential office, Gauck talked with Xi about human rights, environmental protection, Internet security and China’s controversial management of foreign-based nongovernmental organizations.

Yet, despite some disputes, Gauck and Xi both stressed bilateral strategic cooperation. At a meeting with reporters from the State publication Global Times (GT), Gauck spoke highly of China’s rapid development, adding that he wanted this visit to deepen his understanding of China and help the two countries maintain a close relationship.

Gauck’s talk with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang also focused on “cooperation.” Li expressed a strong desire to connect China’s “Made in China 2025” plan to Germany’s “Industry 4.0” strategy. According to China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Li said that the two countries can best collaborate by combining Germany’s advanced technology with China’s highly cost-effective and competitive manufacturing. China will continue to open up its massive market to the outside world and welcome investment from foreign corporations. Li added that both sides will discuss further cooperation when Chancellor Angela Merkel comes to China this year for the fourth round of Sino-German talks.

During his stay in Beijing, Gauck also talked about cooperation with the senior leaders of the Party School of the Communist Party of China. He spent his last two days of the trip in Shanghai, where he visited the Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum, and in Xi’an, the city that marks the beginning of the ancient Silk Road. Some German media commented that Gauck is trying to find a balance between nurturing a healthy relationship with China while still staying true to his activist identity. 

Tags:

Editor's Picks

Sex for Snacks

In cities like Shanghai and Chongqing, a handful of high school…[More]

Worked to Death

A growing number of young Chinese white-collar employees are dying of…[More]

TROTSKY IN CHINA

How Communism’s most controversial theorist finally found an audience – in…[More]

What do Chinese People Want?

“I wish I could do what you do.”…[More]

THE HERMIT HUNTER

A student of Buddhism with a keen interest in China’s…[More]

Prize Fighter

Elevated into the State-approved pantheon of great Chinese writers thanks to…[More]

Dams in Distress

In 1975, over 60 dams collapsed after a rainstorm in Zhumadian city, Henan…[More]

Pathologically Politicized

Practitioners at all levels concur that “messy” is the word that…[More]

HIVE MINDED

China’s indigenous honey bee is under threat from both environmental…[More]

The New Class

China’s growing online education market has attracted the attention of…[More]

Exam Boot Camp

A middle school in Anhui province has earned a reputation for…[More]

From Stall to Mall

Taobao’s shift towards a business-to-consumer model has come at a…[More]

In Whose Court?

The failure of the country’s administrative litigation system has prompted…[More]

Tradition on Trial

After Confucianism made the maintenance of inequality between the sexes fundamental…[More]

Inevitable Brutality

The vicious murder of a doctor in a Zhejiang hospital shows…[More]

Progress or Pornography?

A new sex education primer aimed at elementary school-age children has…[More]

Graft Breeds Graft

The gap between the investigation and prosecution of official corruption cases…[More]

Problem Solved?

Former Politburo member Bo Xilai’s public trial sends mixed messages…[More]

Saving Nature

The concept of animal welfare is yet to be widely acknowledged…[More]

Who Cares?

A new law decrees that all Chinese citizens are now obliged…[More]

BEWILDERING

A 74-year-old man surnamed Xie from Shenyang, Liaoning Province was duped out of 420,000 yuan (US$69,342), despite bank employees’ efforts to…[More]

ANGRY

A policeman pulled his gun to dissuade villagers from stealing oranges…[More]

An Avoidable Tragedy

Poor city planning and lax safety regulations turned a minor gas…[More]

Mean Streets

The chengguan system has become the most visible symptom of a…[More]

How do Chinese people live?

So, the bottom line is that Beijing is an expensive place.…[More]

Back in Action

After stagnating for 10 years, China’s SOE reform has fired up…[More]

THE HANGING DEAD

The hanging coffins of the Bo people, a Chinese ethnic minority…[More]

AMUSING

Wang Xun, an archeologist with Peking University, arranged the bones of…[More]

Trust Trip

Embarking on a three-month car journey around China without handing over…[More]

Fading Lights

For those who grew up under the bright lights of China…[More]