Friday, September 26, 2008

3 milk products sold in Macao confirmed melamine-contaminated

Macao's health authorities on Thursday confirmed that three milk products, including biscuits, liquid milk and baby formula, sold in Macao were confirmed to be contaminated with melamine.

The three products are Lotte Koala Biscuit ,Nestle's baby formula NESLAC Gold Growing Up 1+ Tin and the Mengniu Breakfast Milk , according to a press statement from the Special Administration Region's Health Bureau , which said it tested a total of 35 various milk products sold in the local market in a single batch.

The Lotte biscuit was found to be containing the highest volume of melamine, at 24 milligram per kilogram, the Mengniu Breakfast Milk at 2.35 milligram per kilogram, and the Nestle baby formula at less than 1 milligram per kilogram, which meets the safety standard of the neighboring regions, according to the statement.

The Secretary for the SAR's Social Affairs and Culture Chui SaiOn vowed Thursday that the government would "spare no efforts" in providing medical examination and treatment for students who might have consumed contaminated milk.

The students would be given a detailed checkup if needed, and the government would provide them with the necessary treatment should any kidney stones be detected, Chui said after attending a conference this morning.

For the time being, the SAR government has started an urgent communication mechanism with health authorities in the mainland and Hong Kong SAR, after the detection of melamine in some dairy products, the SAR's Government Information Bureau said.

Source: Xinhua

ADB to provide $4.5 mln to foster Central Asia economic development

The Asian Development Bank said here on Thursday that it will provide 4.5 million U.S. dollars to foster closer cooperation among member countries of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation by establishing a virtual institute that will coordinate research, training and dialogue within the regional organization.

ADB will provide 4 million U.S. dollars to the project from its technical assistance fund and another 500,000 U.S. dollars from its Regional Cooperation and Integration Fund, a special fund under the Regional Cooperation and Integration Financing Partnership Facility that supports technical assistance projects.

Another 500,000 U.S. dollars will come from the People's Republic of China Regional Cooperation and Poverty Reduction Fund, while participating governments will provide 200,000 U.S. dollars to complete funding requirement.

"By its virtual nature, the CAREC Institute will not have any permanent location, infrastructure or staff. This approach offers a lot of advantages by making use of existing resources and minimizing fixed investment costs before the institute starts producing tangible results," said Natasha Davis, Regional Cooperation Specialist of the Central and West Asia Department.

The CAREC Institute will further improve regional cooperation by coming up with knowledge resources that meet global standards to support regional infrastructure networks in transportation, trade and energy, ADB said in a press release.

This should help speed up identifying and developing regional projects in the priority areas.


Storms leave at least 14 dead in China's quake zone

At least 14 people were killed in the quake-battered Sichuan province where torrential rains triggered disasters, confirmed local government on Thursday.

The victims were from Mianyang city, where 40 others were reported missing. Nearly 1.19 million people there were affected by rainstorms.

Downpour and ensuing flash floods, landslides and mud-rock flows also destroyed 42,121 houses, toppled 15,979 others. Some 60,893.3 hectares of crops were ruined and 5,310 cattle were killed.

Direct economic loss was estimated at 1.2 billion yuan , according to the disaster relief office under the Mianyang city government.

In the Qingchuan county, rescuers managed to establish contact with the last five cut-off villages and townships, where basic facilities and farmlands were severely damaged but no casualties have been reported yet.

Rescuers are repairing the damaged roads and cables while water and electricity supplies are on the way.

Rainstorm swept the southwestern province on Wednesday, plaguing the people there still recovering from the May 12 massive earthquake.

Source: Xinhua

White Rabbit candy halts sales, as products under scrutiny for melamine contamination

The producer of China's White Rabbit brand candy on Friday announced the suspension of domestic sales of its products, which are suspected of melamine contamination.

The Guanshengyuan company had previously recalled all exports, some of which tested positive for melamine in Singapore earlier this week.

Ge Junjie, vice manager of the Shanghai Guangming Dairy and Food Company, which owns Guanshengyuan, said the suspension of sales of White Rabbit candy reflected "the company's conscientious decision to protect consumers".

The company's candy is still undergoing tests for melamine by the Shanghai Entry-Exit Inspection and Quarantine Bureau.

The bureau could not provide the test results on Friday morning.

"We decided to halt all sales of White Rabbit candy, although the test results have not yet come out," said Ge.


Summer Davos Forum to open in Tianjin

The Annual Meeting of the New Champions of 2008 World Economic Forum will take place in Tianjin from September 27 to 28, 2008. At present, Binhai International Convention & Exhibition Centre, the main venue of the forum, has entered the final stages of preparation, and is ready to welcome "new champions" with high-quality services and facilities.

World Economic Forum is an independent international organization incorporated as a Swiss not-for-profit foundation. Klaus Schwab, a professor from the University of Switzerland founded it in 1971 with headquarter in Geneva, Switzerland. As the annual meeting of the forum is held each year in January in Davos, a small town in Switzerland, the forum is also known as the "Davos Forum."

World Economic Forum is committed to call leaders from all walks of life to cooperate in order to discuss world economic problems, to promote international economic cooperation and exchanges with the aim to determine the global, regional and industry agendas, in turn affect the world.

By People's Daily Online

Brazil hails successful lunching of Shenzhou-7 mission

President of the Brazilian SpaceAgency Carlos Ganem lauded the successful launching of the Shenzhou-7 mission on Thursday, describing the mission as a milestone of space activities.

"The AEB celebrates the successful launching of the spaceship Shenzhou-7, with three crew members aboard, which certainly will be a millstone in space activities," Ganem told Xinhua.

"Brazil, as a partner of China, rejoices over the event and whishes a full success of the mission," Ganem said.

The Shenzhou-7, lunched from the Jiuquan Satellite Launching Center in northwest China, is manned by three Chinese astronauts, two of them will perform Chinese astronauts' first space walk.


The current financial turmoil in the United States is the main concern of the world's chief executive officers and investors gathering on Friday for s

"With the cultivation of their respective party and state leadership, the relationship of Laos and China are moving forward in a healthy and vigorous way. The positive momentum of development has been reflected in all aspects in the relationship -- politics, economy, education and tourism, etc. commented Lao Deputy Prime Minister Somsavat Lengsavad in an interview with Xinhua Thursday in the Lao capital Vientiane.

Somsavat, also head of the standing committee of the government, could not help expressing his amazement by his recent trip to Beijing as a guest at the 2008 Paralympic Games closing ceremony.

"Beijing has changed so much. The splendor and grandness of the Beijing Paralympic Games is the best illustration of China's progress. I consider this is the best ever Paralympics in the history. It is not only a pride of the Chinese, but also a boast for the whole Asia," he said.

Somsavat said that with a peaceful and friendly approach, China is exerting more and more important influence on the region and around the globe, from which the Lao-Chinese relationship has benefited.

Frequent exchange of visits by top officials, broadening economic cooperation, booming inter-trade and investment, and the take-off of educational and scientific cooperation, are among the achievements in this bilateral relationship, he said.

Taking tourism as example, Somsavat cited that number of tourists from Laos to China or vice versa both had a leap in recent years, which has benefited the tourism in both countries, but also strengthened understanding and friendship between the twopeoples.

He also particularly mentioned the educational cooperation withdelightment: "Chinese language teaching projects will be launched soon in schools along the Lao-Chinese borders. Lao officials are now discussing details about the projects with Chinese counterparts. We believe it would provide a better language environment for the prosperity of border trade."

When asked about how the local schools view the projects, the Deputy Prime Minister said, "It is due to this growing local demand that we started the plan. The children were so happy at thenews about setting up Chinese courses."

He noted that a plan to open a Confucius College, a Chinese-government-supported project for teaching Chinese language overseas, in Vientiane is already undergoing preparation.

He also praised China's role in especially the Great-Mekong Sub-region.

He rejected some speculations that flooding in this August in Laos around Mekong River, which runs through the borders between Laos and China, had been caused by the acts by China to discharge waters from dams along the Lancang River -- the part of Mekong inside China's borders.

He explained that the August flooding in Laos has not only took place along the Mekong river, but also many other areas around lakes in the upcountry, which has been caused mainly by particularly heavy rains during this year's rainy season.

It was not directly related to the water discharge from Lancang River on the upper side of Mekong, said Somsavat. Instead, other countries in the Mekong region should be grateful for China's consistent efforts in providing related hydrologic data in an bid to enhance the downriver flooding control, he said.

Lao Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh will attend the West China Expo this October in Chengdu, China, and will also meet Chinese leader at this December's ASEAN Summit in Thailand. "I believe these exchanges and others in the future, will definitely upgrade the already good relations in all aspects between the two countries in a positive way," said the deputy premier.