CGTN: New journey of the new era: China charts course for modernization

BEIJING, Dec. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — For more than a century, China has tirelessly pursued modernization — from “Revitalize China” to the “four modernizations” goal launched after the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, referring to agriculture, industry, defense and science.

Now modernization is no longer simply a dream for the Chinese people. In 2022, China’s leadership unveiled its blueprint for building a modern socialist China in all respects featuring a unique Chinese path.

“An ambitious blueprint has been drawn for building a modern socialist country in all respects and advancing the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation on all fronts through a Chinese path to modernization, sounding a clarion call of the times for us forging ahead on a new journey,” Chinese President Xi Jinping said in his New Year address on Saturday.

Toward Chinese modernization

In October, Chinese modernization, a key term defining China’s journey to rejuvenation, was for the first time written into a report to the National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

Chinese modernization has elements that are universal to all modernization processes but is characterized by features that are unique to the Chinese context.

President Xi has underscored the unique features of Chinese modernization: the modernization of a huge population, of common prosperity for all, of material and cultural-ethical advancement, of harmony between humanity and nature, and of peaceful development.

China is working to achieve modernization for more than 1.4 billion people, a number larger than the combined population of all developed countries in the world today.

With the steady growth of its own economy, China champions common prosperity to ensure that everyone receives a fair share of its economic success and to reduce inequality. According to the Blue Book of Common Prosperity, China’s index of common prosperity increased by 79.3 percent from 24.67 in 2013 to 44.23 in 2020.

While continuing to consolidate the material foundation for modernization and improve the material conditions for people’s well-being, China is striving to develop advanced socialist culture, foster strong ideals and convictions, and carry forward China’s cultural heritage. China now has 43 items on the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list, the highest number in the world.

Guided by the new development philosophy featuring innovative, coordinated, green, open and shared development, China in 2022 continued to be a leading growth engine for the world economy. The International Monetary Fund forecast that China’s economy would grow at 3.2 percent in 2022, aligning with the global projected pace.

As the Chinese leadership has pledged many times, the country has stayed committed to peaceful development. The Global Security Initiative launched in April is one example. It has already gained appreciation and support from over 70 countries.

With solid steps

The CPC aims to realize socialist modernization from 2020 through 2035, and build China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious and beautiful from 2035 through the middle of this century.

The path to achieving the goals is already taking shape. With its people-centered philosophy of development, the country has built the world’s largest education, social security and healthcare systems.

Xi has called innovation the heart of China’s modernization drive. China’s pursuit of independence in scientific innovation is reflected in its various achievements, including the Beidou Navigation Satellite System, space exploration including lunar and Mars probes and the construction of China’s own space station, and the deep-sea manned submersible Fendouzhe. The country has also developed its own high-speed railway technologies, 5G communication technologies and artificial intelligence.

In the Global Innovation Index 2022 provided by the World Intellectual Property Organization, a UN specialized agency, China’s rank has risen to 11th among the 132 economies surveyed.

Guided by Xi’s vision of “lucid waters and lush mountains are invaluable assets,” China’s modernization drive also emphasizes harmonious coexistence between humanity and nature. The country has cut its carbon emission intensity by 34.4 percent over the past 10 years, and pledged to have CO2 emissions peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060.

Moreover, China reiterates that it will advance a broader agenda of opening up across more areas and with greater depth, follow the Chinese path to modernization, and share the nation’s development opportunities with the world. In the first 11 months of 2022, China’s trade in goods expanded 8.6 percent year on year to 38.34 trillion yuan ($5.5 trillion), according to the General Administration of Customs.

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2022-12-31/New-journey-of-the-new-era-China-charts-course-for-modernization-1gcNT6SNh1C/index.html

CGTN: Xi Jinping salutes ordinary people’s extraordinary efforts in New Year Address

BEIJING, Dec. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — From medical professionals to delivery men and women, from community workers to next-door neighbors, ordinary Chinese people are doing their best and lending a hand to help others cope with the latest waves of COVID-19 infections in the country.

With extraordinary efforts, China has prevailed over unprecedented difficulties and challenges in fighting the pandemic, Chinese President Xi Jinping said on Saturday while delivering his 2023 New Year Address.

Officials and the general public, particularly medical professionals and community workers, have bravely stuck to their posts through it all, Xi said.

“It has not been an easy journey for anyone,” he said, calling for an extra effort from the people to pull through.

People first, life first

In 2022, China continued to optimize its COVID response in light of the evolving situation. Based on the mutation of the virus, the popularization of vaccination and the accumulation of experience in prevention and control, the National Health Commission said in December that the country’s epidemic prevention and control has entered a new stage.

Shifting from infection prevention to medical treatment, China has rolled out a host of measures to boost access to medical treatment and drugs, improve health services for the elderly and other vulnerable groups, speed up vaccination, and beef up health infrastructure in rural areas.

Seventy percent of those aged over 60 had received a booster dose of vaccines as of December 13, up from less than 53 percent among the age group of the population by March 24, according to data from the State Council Joint Prevention and Control Mechanism Against COVID-19.

In addition, the relaxation of the response policy in 2022 comes after China has effectively responded to five global COVID waves and avoided widespread infections with the original strain and the Delta variant, which are relatively more pathogenic than the other variants.

“Since COVID-19 struck, we have put the people first and put life first all along,” Xi said during his New Year Address.

“Following a science-based and targeted approach, we have adapted our COVID response in light of the evolving situation to protect the life and health of the people to the greatest extent possible,” he added.

China has kept its severe COVID-19 cases and death rates among the lowest in the world. The average life expectancy of the Chinese has continued to rise amid the pandemic, from 77.93 years in 2020 to 78.2 years in 2021.

Light right in front

Starting January 8, China will downgrade management of the disease from Class A to Class B in accordance with the country’s law on prevention and treatment of infectious disease, in a major shift of its epidemic response policies. The country will also scrap quarantine measures for inbound travelers from the day.

Following the announcement of the latest adjustments, searches and bookings for international flights and hotels rocketed on multiple Chinese online travel agencies, with some numbers hitting three-year highs, indicating that normal life is picking up.

Another sign that experts believe bodes the revival of the country’s consumption market in 2023, restaurants, shopping malls and cinemas nationwide have reopened and reported burgeoning visits.

“Everyone is holding on with great fortitude, and the light of hope is right in front of us,” Xi said during Saturday’s address to ring in the new year.

“Let’s make an extra effort to pull through, as perseverance and solidarity mean victory.”

https://news.cgtn.com/news/2022-12-31/Xi-China-s-COVID-response-protects-lives-to-greatest-extent-possible-1gdrOETi4Bq/index.html

Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pzIjM-0f6M0

CGTN: China will continue to contribute to global peace and development in connected world

BEIJING, Dec. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Noting China is a country closely linked with the world, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that he has not only hosted old and new friends in Beijing, but also traveled abroad to communicate China’s propositions to the world over the past year in his 2023 New Year address on Saturday.

The past year has witnessed a friends-gathering Beijing Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Spring, bilateral meetings between Xi and foreign leaders of more than 40 countries, and three overseas trips made by Xi before and after the 20th National Congress of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in October.

Nguyen Phu Trong, general secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee, became the first foreign leader to visit China since the conclusion of the 20th CPC National Congress. Since then, Xi has held dozens of bilateral meetings with foreign leaders including German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, who was the first leader of a major Western country to visit China after the milestone CPC meeting.

The visits were widely acknowledged to create peaks for head-of-state diplomacy in 2022.

In the past year, China has continued to play its role as a responsible major country in the international arena by enhancing relations with other major countries.

From two phone calls to a face-to-face meeting in Bali between Xi and his U.S. counterpart Joe Biden, both leaders agreed to take concrete actions to put China-U.S. relations back on track with steady development.

Besides two personal meetings in Beijing in February and in Samarkand in September, the virtual meeting between Xi and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin yesterday showed both countries will continue to strengthen strategic coordination and uphold international justice.

With Xi’s attendance at the first China-Arab States Summit and the China-Gulf Cooperation Council in Riyadh, China-Arab states relations also ushered in a new era of all-round and in-depth development.

In the past year, China has also continued to offer its solutions with Chinese wisdom to tackle common challenges confronting the international community.

Xi proposed the Global Security Initiative (GSI) at the Boao Forum for Asia in April 2022 to work with other countries to promote security for all, after putting forward the Global Development Index (GDI) at the general debate of the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in September 2021.

To date, more than 70 countries have expressed support for the GSI, and more than 100 countries and a number of international organizations, including the UN, have committed support to the GDI and nearly 70 countries have joined the Group of Friends of the GDI.

Noting that changes unseen in a century are unfolding at a faster pace and the world is not yet a tranquil place, Xi said in the New Year address that China cherishes peace and development and values friends and partners as always.

“We stand firm on the right side of history and on the side of human civilization and progress. We work hard to contribute China’s wisdom and solutions to the cause of peace and development for all humanity,” he said.

Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6qVJKA3ClA

UAE welcomes 2023 in style

EMIRATES, The year 2023 is being warmly greeted in the UAE. The New Year’s Eve celebrations tonight occasioned a magnificent affair throughout the Emirates, featuring several world record bids, fireworks in dozens of places, drone shows, and celebrity concerts.

For the first time since the pandemic, revelers rang in 2023 without being subjected to Covid-related limitations. Parties celebrated the conclusion of a significant year for the nation with record-breaking fireworks shows.

A 40-minute fireworks show in Abu Dhabi attempted to break three records in quantity, time and formation. A giant drone show, using more than 3,000 unmanned aerial vehicles lit up the skies of Al Wathba.

In Dubai, massive crowds gathered in Downtown to witness the Burj Khalifa’s spectacular fireworks display as it was lit up. Sharjah rang in the 2023 New Year with firework displays and shows on the Al Majaz waterfront.

The sky of Ajman Corniche was lit up with a massive fireworks show, while Ras Al Khaimah put on a 12-minute fireworks display in an effort to beat its own record! In Fujairah and Umm Al Qaiwain, people took to the streets to enjoy the spectacular shows and infatuating weather.

Source: Emirates News Agency

A dazzling NYE in Khorfakkan with Al Jasmi and Hameem

Popular Emirati singer Hussain Al Jasmi and Iraqi artist Aseel Hameem led the spectacular musical celebrations of the New Year in style with breathtaking fireworks at the Khorfakkan Amphitheatre last night (Saturday, December 31).

Hundreds of cheering music lovers welcomed the Year 2023 as they enjoyed the popular songs of Al Jasmi, also known as Al Jebel (the Mountain) and young Iraqi singer, Hameem under the radiant, colourful skies of the Khorfakkan, the Bride of the East Coast, as they lit up with dazzling fireworks.

The first concert of the year, held as part of the #LetsKhorfakkan season, saw the audience welcome the young Iraqi star Aseel Hameem with equal enthusiasm. The singer thanked the audience for the warm welcome and support she received. Her warm and enchanting voice added to the dazzling glamour and beauty of the evening. Hameem presented a wonderful bouquet of her popular songs including “The Secret of Life”, “Blani Zamani”, “It Looks Like You Have My Heart”, and many others.

The atmosphere in the Amphitheatre became truly electric when she performed on the song “Ward Joury Foua Wajnnatak” by the first Emirati artist Mehad Hamad. Hameem bid farewell to her fans, wishing them an enjoyable evening and a Happy New Year leaving the stage for the star of the evening, Hussain Al Jasmi.

The audience welcomed Al Jasmi amid loud cheers and applause, and the artist brought the stage alive as it were as he performed before a distinguished audience in his hometown of Khorfakkan. He took the audience to heights of musical glory and magic of poetry as he treated them to powerful rhythms and vibrant, foot-tapping numbers.

The audience was treated to some of the finest songs and numbers that have made Al Jasmi one of the most popular artists in the UAE and the region, songs such as “Led by Sultan”, “Very Important”, “Six Al Sobh” and others. He also entertained the audience with the song “Ama Barawah” by Najat Al Saghira.

When the countdown to the New Year began, the singer further added to the magic of the evening by singing the famous masterpiece of Fairouz, “We Breathe Our Passion”. Al Jabel welcomed the first minutes of the New Year with the song “I Love You to Death”.

Al Jasmi wrapped up the beautiful evening with the song “Balbunt Al Arid”. He said he was proud and happy to celebrate and welcome the New Year with his family and fans, the people he loved, wishing everyone a year full of bounty, happiness and safety.

Source: Sharjah24

SCC’s Family Affairs Cmte discusses SDSVA’s services to citizens

The Family Affairs Committee of the Sharjah Consultative Council was briefed on the efforts of the Sharjah Department of Suburbs and Villages Affairs (SDSVA), and listened to an explanation on the various works of the department, and the programmes and services it delivers for families in various neighbourhoods.

This came during the reception of Sheikh Majid bin Sultan Al Qasimi, member of the Sharjah Executive Council, head of the SDSVA, at the headquarters of the Mweileh Suburb Council in the city of Sharjah, and his assistants from the SDSVA’s directors of various departments.

The visit was held with the aim of preparing the Family Affairs Committee for the SDSVA discussion in preparation for presenting them during the next session that the Council will hold within the framework of its fourth regular session of the tenth legislative term.

Welcoming the delegation, Sheikh Majid bin Sultan Al Qasimi praised the SCC’s communication and interest in all the work of Sharjah government departments and agencies, and the keenness of its members to provide opinion and advice to develop aspects of work and improve services delivered to citizens and residents.

The Family Affairs Committee praised the level of tasks assumed by the SDSVA and their role in building bridges of communication between the members of society, according to the department’s strategy in line with the sustainable development in Sharjah, which takes into account the customs and authenticity of society in Sharjah.

Sheikh Majid bin Sultan Al Qasimi briefed the Family Affairs Committee on the work of the department, praising the unlimited interest of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah in the department and the suburban councils in the emirate, and His Highness’s follow-up of the work of the department and its councils so that they play their main role in strengthening community relations and family bonding, contributing to providing solutions, following up cases and issues of citizens in residential areas, and hosting various events.

He also touched on the most prominent activities of the department, including the Dawahi Festival, which is being held this year in its eleventh edition, in addition to the role of the department and the suburbs in following up the affairs of the deceased, carrying out reconciliation between families, meeting the needs of citizens, and consolidating the relationship between society and the government.

After that, the Family Affairs Committee’s members put forward some of the topics that fall within the jurisdiction of the department, presenting a number of proposals that are integrated with the vision of the Ruler of Sharjah in establishing suburb councils to be closest to each family.

Source: Sharjah24