tion with China on jointly building the Belt and Road, She said.
Noting that the history of Italy-China exchanges for the past 50 years has been a history of dia
logue and friendship, the speaker said the Italian Senate is willing to facilitate exchanges between the two cou
ntries’ legislative institutions, and continue to make contributions to deepening Italy-China friendly cooperation.
Xi arrived in Rome Thursday for a state visit to Italy, the first stop of his three-nation Europe tour, which will also take him to Monaco and France.
hinese authorities have unveiled detailed measures to implement valu
e-added tax reform, a key step to boost market vitality and stabilize economic growth.
Starting April 1 this year, the 16 percent VAT rate that applies to manufa
cturing and other sectors will be lowered to 13 percent, while the rate for construction, tran
sport and other sectors will be reduced from 10 percent to 9 percent, said a joint statement released on Th
ursday by the Ministry of Finance, State Taxation Administration and the General Administration of Customs.
Britain has now been instructed to properly finish the process of decolonizati
on, and return the Chagos Islands, located half way between Africa and Indonesia, to Mauritius.
The ruling, though non-binding, potentially creates a huge problem for the Unite
d States. Today, Diego Garcia is one of America’s most important — and secretive — overseas assets.
Home to over 1,000 US troops and staff, it has been used by the US Navy, the US Air Force and ev
en NASA — the island’s enormous runway was a designated emergency landing site for the spac
e shuttle. Diego Garcia has helped to launch two invasions of Iraq, served as a vital landing spot for bombers that fly mis
sions across Asia, including over the South China Sea, and has been linked to US rendition efforts.
Many in Britain, including Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the country’s opposition Labour Party, are now calling for the
UK to return the islands to Mauritius. Should that happen experts believe the ownership of Diego Garcia co
uld be up for negotiation — a move that would make Mauritius a much more important country geopolitically.
seemed indicative of what was already deemed one of the most wide-open races i
n years, given the lack of consensus among guild awards leading up to Sunday’s event.
Perhaps no surprise came bigger than best actress, as “The Favourite’s” Olivia Colman upset
seven-time nominee Glenn Close, who had marched through awards season with enough victories to m
ake her a presumptive favorite. (Colman, in an emotional speech, practically apologized to Close for wi
nning.)s for politics, a recurring theme involved the Trump administration’s immigration polices, including an early jo
ke from Maya Rudolph that among the things that wouldn’t be happening during the telecast, “Mexico is not paying for the w
all.” For his part, Malek referenced being a first-generation American, the son of Egyptian immigrants.
Still, the most overt and rousing rejoinder belonged to Spik
e Lee — a winner for adapted screenplay for his movie “BlacKkKlansman” — who pointed to
the 2020 election, urging people to “be on the right side of history. Let’s do the right thing!” Congressman and civil-rig
hts icon John Lewis also received a prolonged ovation, introducing “Green Book.”
An Air New Zealand flight from Auckland to Shanghai had to turn back midway on Sunday morni
ng after the aircraft was found to be lacking the required permission to land in China’s mainland.
The Boeing 787-9, operating as Flight NZ289, took off from Au
kland, New Zealand, around midnight on Saturday local time but turned back after flying for a
bout 4.5 hours. The flight was scheduled to land at Pudong International Airport at 7:05am Beijing time.
In a short message sent to passengers later, the airline said the “aircraft operating the flight did not have reg
ulatory approval to land in Chinese mainland and was required to return to Auckland.”
The B787-9, the bigger version of the Dreamliner, with the registration ZK-NZQ, has been flying wit
h the airline for five months, but has never landed in the Chinese mainland, according to its flying records.
According to China’s civil aviation regulation, foreign carriers are required to
submit a list of the type, nationality and registration mark of aircraft sch
eduled to land in Chinese mainland to the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) before operating the flight.