he two heads of state will take part in strategic planni

ning to upgrade bilateral ties, and “jointly usher in a new era of high-level development of China-Russia relations”, he said.

In response to a question about the influence of ongoing Sino-US trade friction on coopera

tion between Chinese and Russian enterprises, Zhang said Beijing and Moscow share a broad conse

nsus and common interests, and will work together to deal with external challenges.

“We have the confidence, resolve and ability to safeguard ou

r country’s sovereignty, security and dignity as well as its development interests,” he added.

“The China-Russia relationship neither targets

a third party, nor will it be weakened by discord sowed by any third party,” Zhang said.

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China attaches great importance to the development of th

 the big data industry and is willing to share opportunities of the dig

ital economy’s development with other countries and jointly explore new growth drive

rs and development paths by exploring new technologies, new business forms and new models, Xi added.

With increasingly wider applications of digital technologies in China, the country is expected to genera

te and store 27.8 percent of global online data by 2025, up from 23.4 percent last year, according to a re

port by market researcher International Data Corp and data storage firm Seagate.

In comparison, the US share will stand at 17.5 percent by 2025, a drop from its 21 percent share in 2018, the report added.

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said that f

rom medicine to transportation to farming, big data presents the world with a r

emarkable tool to advance global progress, but with that opportunity also comes risk.

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Xi noted that China and Brazil are the biggest developing

 countries in the Eastern and Western hemispheres, and both are imp

ortant emerging markets. The two countries have a common wish and great potential for d

evelopment, he said, adding that both countries are important forces for promoting a multilateral world.

Since the establishment of diplomatic ties 45 years

ago, relations between China and Brazil have achieved fruitful outcomes, Xi said.

The president said it is a critical period for the two countries, and they

should forge ahead, and each side should deem the other as a partner for development.

Xi called on the two countries to respect, trust and support each other in making the China-Brazil relationship a model for d

eveloping countries’ cooperation and an important force in promoting world peace and progress.

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More than 700 scientists from around 40 countries, regio

ns and international organizations supported the declaration. It recommended a

ctions including data-sharing, investing in disaster risk reduction technologies and inf

rastructure, and jointly enhancing disaster preparedness and response protocols.

The conference also saw the launch of a scientific alliance on international disaster risk reduction, which included aro

und 30 institutions and universities from countries including Italy, Belgium, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

The alliance will serve as a new platform for international coordinati

on and provide scientific support for disaster relief and sustainable development.

The conference was co-hosted by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the Chi

na Association for Science and Technology, the United Nations Environment Progra

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In recent years, sales in many sectors in lower-tier cit

ities have grown more quickly than in big cities, including clothing, food, beverages and home appliances, Chen added.

During Spring Festival in February, small-town youths in third- an

d lower-tier cities outperformed their peers in bigger centers of population in consu

mption across major e-commerce platforms, including the number of orders placed and the range of products bought.

In third- and fourth-tier cities, total online spending during Spring Festival rose by 55 percent year-on-year, comp

ared with 51 percent in first-tier metropolises. Spending by small-town youths on beauty products rose by 7.8 perc

ent year-on-year, compared with a 5.4 percent increase among their peers in larger cities, according to a report rel

eased by Tmall-Alibaba’s e-commerce platform-and market research company Kantar Worldpanel.

Small-town youths have also boosted the movie industry. For example, in the first quarter of this year, some

56 percent of the box office for The New King of Comedy came from lower-tier cities, as did 46 percent for Crazy Alien.

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Vision China events have been previously held in B

eijing, Hangzhou, Johannesburg and London. The events have been broadcast live on inter

net and multimedia platforms, reaching an international audience, particularly young people.

This upcoming event will also be broadcast live on the China Daily website and ap

p, as well as China Daily’s account on Sina Weibo, Tencent Video, Toutiao, Bilibili, Facebook and Twitter platforms.

A former Peking University student suspected of killing his mother has been captured after th

ree years on the run, said a Fuzhou Public Security Bureau official on Thursday, Beijing News reported.

Wu Xieyu was caught at Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport when boa

rding a plane on April 21, the newspaper reported, quoting sources close to the police.

The Belt and Road Initiative aims to build the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road and deliver polici

es, infrastructure, trade, financial and people-to-people connectivity via a new platform for a brighter futur

Man suspected of killing mother arrested after three years on the run

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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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It is such a pleasure to see Hello Kitty and her frien

nds set their home in Shanghai, by perfectly fusing with loc

al culture,” said Li Mingxun, chief operating officer of Sanrio Shanghai Intern

ational Trade, during the launch ceremony at the Le Royal Meridien Shanghai.

One of the most popular areas so far is a 14-meter-high wall that goes throughout three floors and features cute remakes of Shan

ghai’s landmarks including the Oriental Pearl TV Tower, China Art Museum and Garden Bridge.

The indoor play area is one of the latest attempts by Shimao to explore theme park business oppo

rtunities. The theme park industry is fast expanding in China, with Ping An Securities projecting it to do

uble its existing volume to 90 billion yuan ($13.39 billion) in annual revenue by 2022.

“The collaboration with Sanrio started three years ago, and the tw

o parties strive to offer visitors an surrealistic experience with a mix of reality and hy

per-reality images,” said Peng Yueqi, vice-president of Shimao Commercial and Themed Entertainment.

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Xu said there have also been signs showing climate cha

ange has resulted in lower wind speeds in the region. There h

as been a downward trend for average wind speeds in the cluster si

nce 1960 and especially after 1990. This is in line with the weakening trend of wind speeds made up of cold air from L

ake Baikal in Russia, which penetrates into the region from the northwest

A multilateral tax cooperation mechanism under the Belt and Road Initiative was establ

ished on Thursday in Wuzhen, Zhejiang province. It aims to facili

tate cross-border trade and investment along BRI routes by helping resolve tax disputes.

The nonprofit mechanism, the Belt and Road Initiative Tax Admin

istration Cooperation Mechanism, or BRITACOM, includes tax authorities from 34 countr

ies and regions. Participating parties signed a memorandum of understanding and bec

ome council members on Thursday, including those from Kazakhstan, Uruguay and Nigeria.

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And it is not just small independent record stores

 that have struggled to stay afloat.In the 1990s China Record Group Co Ltd, the biggest and oldest re

cord company in the country, sold about 10 million records, such as pop, folk, and classical music by Chinese

singers and orchestras, says Hou Jun, the company’s vice-president. In the early 2000s the number dropped to no more

than 10,000 copies, and the huge change in the way music was consumed led to many Chinese record companies folding.

In the late 1990s China Record Group Co Ltd closed down its last vinyl prod

uction line because of the decline of the market for physical records.However, last year, as the

company celebrated the 110th anniversary of its founding, it launched a project to revive vinyl production. The com

pany has imported a production line from Germany that marks the start of the company’s

vinyl production, and it has set up a vinyl records factory in Shanghai that has a complete production line.

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