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Edition: CHINAASIAUSAEUROPEAFRICA

China levies tax on batteries, paint

China will impose consumption tax on some types of batteries and paint to encourage environmental protection.

Industrial output target set at 8%

China's industrial output grew 8.3% in 2014, down from 9.7% seen in 2013, according to the National Bureau of Statistics.

Japan warned not to retract apology

The Foreign Ministry said Beijing was concerned about "what type of attitude the Japanese government" chooses to adopt.

Regulation to curb prosecutor graft

China's Supreme People's Procuratorate has come out with a 15-clause ruling to regulate the conduct of prosecutors.

India a natural partner: Obama

Visiting US President Barack Obama hailed India as a "natural partner", making a strong pit...

Fidel Castro opines on Cuba-US ties

The comments were the first by the 88-year-old revolutionary leader on the talks.

PLA vows improved discipline

Zhang Yang, head of the General Political Department of the PLA, made the promise.

VPN blocked for safety: Official

Moves to block virtual private network services are for "healthy development" of the Internet.

Opinion

Rule of law is better than the ‘rule of man’

Arecent speech by Senior Counsel Paul Shieh, former chairman of the Hong Kong Bar Association, was much praised by commentators.

National security law is badly needed

Acouple of months ago during the “Occupy Central” campaign, a top official from the Hong Kong government announced it had obtai...

What Obama's India visit means to China

India may be pushed back against China once again.

GDP gives way to growth quality

Instead of giving a specific GDP target for Shanghai this year, the mayor said in his report to the city's People's Congress on Sunday ...

Move for better law enforcement

At long last, the performance assessment mechanisms for law enforcement agencies are to be adjusted.

Nation

China, S Korea warn Japan against taking back apology

Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said Beijing was concerned about "what type of attitude the Japanese government" adopts.

China levies consumption tax on batteries, paint

China will impose consumption tax on some types of batteries and paint to encourage environmental protection.

Sichuan officials prosecuted over corruption

Wen Jiabi, former executive vice president of the Sichuan branch of the Red Cross Society, was accused of asking for and taking bribes, as...

Blocking VPN is for safety: Official

China's moves to block virtual private network services are for the "healthy development" of the Internet.

The years of living dangerously

It's 15 years since China first participated in UN peacekeeping missions, but despite the late start, the country is now a leading light.

C-section is no longer cutting edge

Changes to the rules governing family planning prompted hundreds of thousands of couples to register to have a second child, but a former reliance on cesarean deliveries is causing misery for many, as Yang Wanli reports.

China's signal of innovation in Davos

An 80-plus Chinese delegation comprising high-ranking government officials, business elites and academicians drew attentions at the Davos forum.

HK

Govt blasted for failing to curb public housing abuse

The Ombudsman has criticized the Housing Department and Housing Society for railing to prevent public housing abuse.

Official expects rise in flu deaths

The Hospital Authority's chief infection control officer, expected the current flu season to end with possibly 60 to 90 deaths.

The Link becomes first REIT to acquire govt land

The Link Real Estate Investment Trust purchased a commercial plot from the government in conjunction with a local real estate developer.

CE has no comment on his predecessor's case

Hong Kong Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying made no comment on Tuesday when asked about the progress of a case in regard of his predecessor Donald Tsang who allegedly accepted hospitality from tycoons.

Focus HK

Backstage at the forefront

Those who toil behind the theatrical props and the tools they use to create magic on stage, are getting their chance to take a bow, during an exhibition at the HK Arts Centre this week.

Raising standards

More than 73,000 runners, swept up in the annual bout of marathon fever, took part in the city’s largest participatory sporting event on Sunday.

Heart and sole

Goddess founder tells of starting young and finding success with the help of unwavering persistence and a focus on the basics. William Wong Wai was just 25 when he set up Goddess International Ltd.

Asia

Indo-US ties can be century's most defining: Obama

Visiting US President Barack Obama hailed India as a "natural partner", making a strong pitch for religious freedom there.

AirAsia: Indonesia to stop search

Days of rough weather and poor visibility have hampered navy divers' efforts, only 70 bodies have been retrived so far.

DPRK raises prospect of detaining ROK workers at complex

The DPRK has said it can detain workers from the ROK at an joint industrial park in the event of a dispute with their companies.

Emirati airlines halt flights to Baghdad after shooting

Multiple airlines from the United Arab Emirates said Tuesday they were cancelling flights to Baghdad after a passenger plane in Dubai came under fire as it landed in the Iraqi capital.

India looks to the longer term

Amid declining profits, strong balance sheets could tide oil producers through global price drop.

Slippery slope

Asian oil firms see share prices and earnings tumble as outlook for commodity stays bearish

Asia Weekly

Business

Facebook takes blame for service outages

Facebook was blocked around the world for up to an hour which the company said was due to an internal fault and not an outside attack.

Asian airlines slash fuel surcharges but fares likely to rise

Asian airlines are slashing fuel surcharges as oil prices hover at six-year lows, but carriers are likely to bump up base fares to maintain margins.

Russia adopts 1-yr anti-crisis plan

The plan envisages that the budget will return to balance by 2017 if oil prices would grow to $70 per barrel.

Eye on Asia

Marathon, a growing fashion in Japan

More than 420 people took part in the 34th Osaka International Women's Marathon on Jan. 25, and about 6,000 people ran the Osaka Half Marathon on the same day.

Tale of an Afghan female journalist

Life for female journalists in Afghanistan has never been easy but not for Farahnaz, a 22-year- old news presenter of ATN News, in the Afghan capital Kabul.

Childcare burden deters S.Korea working moms

22.4 percent of all married women aged 15 to 54 in South Korea quit their jobs due to marriage, childbirth or childcare.

Sport

Australia beat UAE 2-0 to reach Asian Cup final

Australia remained on course for its maiden Asian Cup title after defeating United Arab Emirates 2-0 in a semifinal at a wet Newcastle Stadium on Tuesday.

Murray beats local hope Kyrgios at Australian Open

Andy Murray beat 19-year-old Nick Kyrgios 6-3 7-6 (5), 6-3 in a quarterfinal match at the Australian Open.

NBA to pay tribute to Chinese Lunar New Year

The National Basketball Association (NBA) will pay tribute to its largest international fanbase Feb 20 to March 5 with its biggest ever Chinese New Year Celebration.

Filling the plate

Maxim’s chairman has revamped the popular Hong Kong restaurant brand into a hugely successful collection of diverse dining outlets.

Power to transform

Overcoming the skeptics to build UAE's thriving Free Trade Zone was just a first step for intrepid leader who is now ready for a new challenge.

Streets ahead

Malaysian enterpreneur survived numerous setbacks before finding success as a leading auto parts maker in Thailand.

Life Style

Two leading Nanjing artists exhibit in Hong Kong

An exhibition of modern Chinese ink wash paintings incorporating colors heavily influenced by Western art, and created by two preeminent Nanjing artists, started on Monday at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre.

Sweet traditions

Yechun Teahouse is a haven of Huaiyang cuisine, as Liu Zhihua discovers at the famous chain's new eatery in the capital.

Quirky News

Still single? Adopt a scorpion

Feeling the sting of rejection? The San Francisco Zoo is offering the chance to "adopt" a hissing cockroach or giant scorpion in honor of that special ex-someone for Valentine's Day.

Smoker fined $15,000 for tossing out butts

Singapore has fined a smoker S$19,800 ($15,000) for throwing cigarette butts out of his flat window, the highest ever such fine.

Chinese official blames smoked bacon for smog

While experts point to car emissions for causing foul air, a Sichuan official has laid the blame on people making smoked bacon.

Video

Hope on wheels

The Standard Chartered Hong Kong Marathon 2015 held on Jan 25 attracted more than 70,000 participants from all over the world. Other than mainstream runners, there was a dedicated contingent that rose to the wheelchair challenge. chinadailyasia.com finds out from a few how they did it.

Expert calls for protection for retirees

Nelson Chow, who wrote the latest retirement protection report, believes the introduction of a universal pension scheme will improve the government’s popularity, Joseph Li writes

Strike a balance in standard working hours

It is too early to talk about standard working hour legislation, said chairman of the Standard Working Hours Committee Leong Che-hung.

Special

Reviving the Ru

2014, the Year of the Horse in Chinese lunar calendar, has proved to be yet another successful year for Han Qin. Her application for a national scientific and technological cooperation project on research and development of Ru wares got approved.

Roundtable

Ideal gateway for overseas ventures

Mainland outbound direct investment (ODI) is for the first time set to exceed inbound figures, underscoring a trend where the world’s second-biggest economy is poised to become a net outbound investment destination.

If you build it, they will come

The importance of Qianhai Cooperation Zone lies not only in its pilot role of spearheading financial innovation, but also in its key role in correcting the misalignment of the country’s economic structure, said Edward Chen Kwan-yiu, president of the Qianhai Institute for Innovative Research.