Argentina: Argentine president visits site of first CPC National Congress during China trip

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez visited the Memorial of the Communist Party of China (CPC)'s First National Congress in downtown Shanghai, on October 15, before he attended the third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation in Beijing.

Staffers at the memorial shared stories of how the young CPC pioneers founded the Party a century ago with Fernandez during his visit. At the hall in the memorial, Fernandez took photos of the full-body bronze statues of the 13 delegates of the CPC's first National Congress.

According to the memorial's staffers, Fernandez carefully listened to the docent's introduction and periodically asked questions. He inquired about the statue of Li Hanjun, who was one of the 13 delegates and the site's owner at that time. The site of the CPC's first National Congress was originally a traditional Shanghai-style "shikumen" apartment. 

"The memorial's display and presentation are very well done," praised Fernandez.

Argentine Ambassador to China Sabino Vaca Narvaja also accompanied the Argentine President on the Sunday visit. 

During the visit to the memorial, Narvaja shared that his Chinese name "Niu Wangdao" came from a renowned Chinese translator Chen Wangdao, who was the first person to translate The Communist Manifesto into Chinese in 1920. Shanghai was the first stop on Fernandez's China tour.

Did Biden ‘neglect’ Indonesia and ASEAN? The truth is darker: Global Times editorial

The 43rd ASEAN Summit and related meetings are scheduled from Monday to Thursday in Jakarta, Indonesia. Countries such as China, the US, Japan and South Korea will attend. According to Indonesian President Joko Widodo, "there are plenty [of agendas], but the focus is on the economy." This is a prominent feature of this year's ASEAN series of summits.

Continuously promoting regional economic development and win-win cooperation is a common aspiration of China and ASEAN. In this regard, there are many common languages. The pattern of China and ASEAN being each other's largest trading partners has been further consolidated. Immediately following the ASEAN Summit, the 20th China-ASEAN Expo and the China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit will be held in Nanning, capital of China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region. These are significant and positive events for China and ASEAN's focus on regional economic cooperation.

Those who have some understanding of international events of the past two years know well that any multilateral occasion with participation of both China and the US tends to draw strong comparisons. This time is no exception.

A few days ago, the US government announced that President Joe Biden will be absent from the summit and that Vice President Kamala Harris will attend in his place. Given that President Biden is scheduled to attend the G20 Summit in India shortly and then visit another ASEAN member, Vietnam, it gives the impression that Biden intentionally 'skipped' the ASEAN Summit hosted by Indonesia, which appears somewhat abrupt.

It is worth noting that various parties have different interpretations of Biden's absence, and the information revealed is rich and thought-provoking. As the host, Indonesia tactfully expressed disappointment at Biden's absence, which is understandable. Some held the view that "it is a signal to outgoing President Jokowi that Indonesia is simply not on the Administration's radar." Others say that this is the US' overall neglect of ASEAN and has "caused some frustration." The most widely circulated narrative in the US and Western media is that Biden's absence may cause Indonesia or ASEAN to "turn to China" or "find it difficult to resist China's maritime expansionary behavior." It can be seen that the mainstream perspective of the US in viewing ASEAN is to regard it as a sphere of influence it competes with China.

We believe that the Biden administration by no means intends to neglect Indonesia and ASEAN. On the contrary, it actually "takes them seriously"; but the real reason for attaching importance to Indonesia and ASEAN is not above board, and it is not consistent with ASEAN's actual interests and wishes, or even runs counter to them. Washington's lack of interest in the ASEAN Summit's focus on economic and trade cooperation is unequivocal. 

Even if Biden attends the summit, it is conceivable that what he brings to the summit will be repeated geopolitical and security rhetoric, such as the so-called "freedom of navigation in the South China Sea" or "disputes over islands and reefs in the South China Sea." It will cause division on multilateral occasions and sow dissension, which is incompatible with the atmosphere of unity and cooperation at the summit. If these words are to be uttered by Harris, the negative impact may be relatively small. Therefore, Biden's absence is not a pity, even less of a loss for the ASEAN summit.

Why did Biden choose Vietnam over Indonesia? There are reasons. Since Washington did not do a good job in roping in ASEAN, it started to "split" it from within ASEAN. Additionally, Biden and Harris have been circling around China for the past year, so their intentions are quite obvious. It is easier for the US to pursue unilateral actions in bilateral settings than in multilateral platforms. But for ASEAN member countries that have been targeted by the US, it is necessary to keep an extra eye on the situation.

A recent article in the Los Angeles Times exposed Washington's true intentions. The article stated that while the Biden administration insists its approach "is not about forcing countries to choose, according to their interviews, "Washington has publicly and privately pressured ASEAN members to turn down China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, reduce their economic and technological dependence on Beijing, and cancel their military partnerships with the People's Liberation Army. Does this not compel nations to choose sides? Washington's attempt to form a small clique is hurting rather than helping ASEAN's security concerns, according to even the US media.

Simply put, the US is currently the nation most difficult for ASEAN to deal with. There are more instances of it in the region, but the potential and practical advantages of development collaboration are dwindling as the risks rise. Every ASEAN meeting is essentially a testing ground for true and false multilateralism. It is not difficult to distinguish between those who come with genuine cooperation and win-win intentions and those who come with firewood and gasoline. ASEAN countries are well aware of this. If Washington picks the wrong course, the likelihood that it will fail increases along with the intensity of its frustration.

US unable to rationally view China’s technological strides

When it comes to China's latest advancement in chips, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday that "it won't be surprising ... The US can always tighten its sanctions regimes and strengthen the safeguards to slow the proliferation. But commerce will almost always force out technological secrets." This seems to be a habitual reluctance of the US to face up to China's technological advancement, who believes that China's capabilities are not yet up to par, and can only develop relying on others' intellectual property or technical secrets.

Essentially, such view looks at technological progress of the world from a racist perspective, as if the slight technological progress of other nations is due to theft or the US' leaked secrets; otherwise, it's impossible for other nations to innovate. But in fact, China's investment in research and development, represented by Huawei, has been world-leading over the years.

In this article, Bloomberg also cites examples to prove that "no one has a monopoly on innovation." China was once advanced in techniques concerning silk, papermaking and porcelain, but they were eventually introduced to the West. Thus, the breakthrough of Huawei's semiconductor is merely part of "a long history of the spread — or theft — of what we now call intellectual property." Is the US media thinking about that such interpretation from the view of history can make the readers better accept the so-called "theft of intellectual property?"

Globalization has brought the proliferation of knowledge and some technologies around the world. However, everyone who masters technology wants to control it, and there are rare cases of active technology shares. Not to mention the complete patent laws and intellectual property laws to protect the interests of inventors in the modern society. 

In this regard, Lü Xiang, a research fellow at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times, "If a country wants to achieve development through the natural spread of technology, it is either very difficult, or it is meaningless to wait until the technology is backward."

Although the US has imposed various technological blockades on China, China still relies on its own efforts to continuously make breakthroughs. 

On the contrary, the US, the largest monitoring and espionage country, keeps stressing the protection of intellectual property rights, while employing hegemonic means to suppress advanced companies in other countries.

It is in essence contradictory that the American media criticizes China's independent innovation as "misguided attempts" and "belligerence," and advocates "technical blockade" at the same times. Of course, the US wants to maintain its hegemony that is reflected in all aspects, including technology, but no country can restrict the development of new technologies by companies in another country, and no company in the world can become world-leading through theft.

Over the years, China's technology advancement has been astonishing, and has even surpassed that of Western countries in many fields. It has aroused many doubts from these countries, suspecting that China has secretly stolen their technology and trying to discredit China. These countries are purely envy of China, and also underestimate China.

Lü believes that China and Chinese companies  including Huawei, have developed some technologies that are more advanced than that of American companies. The US neither has an edge in chip manufacturing nor in craftsmanship. We will prove that the high walls they have built are ultimately ineffective. Because what China's technical progress relies on is the leading manpower and material investment, rather than the leaked information of the US. How can China steal the technology that the US does not have at all?

Moreover, the author also mentioned that "If China and the US continue to use trade and technology in a zero-sum game of world domination, we are all likely to end up on the zero end of the equation." In fact, what the US does is not just zero-sum game, but negative-sum game. Because zero-sum harms others and benefits oneself, negative sum harms others but brings no benefit to oneself.

Some technical patents are actually mutually beneficial. For instance, electronic products manufactured in many countries include Huawei's patents and technologies, while some parts of Huawei may also use Western technologies and products. It is a driving force of technological progress in the world.

But if the US continues its bandit logic, it will only go nowhere. In the end, all countries are interconnected in the era of globalization, which determines that this kind of robber thinking will not work anymore. Jointly promoting the development of science and technology through cooperation is also a trend that the US can't stop.

"As to what choice the US government will make, we still have to wait. We can't expect the US decision-makers to always be smart, especially for the current administration," Lü added.

Upgraded US-Vietnam relations a product of US' self-interest pursuit

During US President Joe Biden's recent visit to Vietnam, it was announced that the Vietnam-US relationship was upgraded to a comprehensive strategic partnership dedicated to "peace, cooperation and sustainable development," making the US Vietnam's fifth "comprehensive strategic partner."

The strengthening of Vietnam-US relations has been brewing for a long time. It seems grand in scale, but the essence of "peace, cooperation and sustainable development" needs to be carefully examined.

First, the US has always been quite enthusiastic about enhancing its relations with Vietnam, but not for the sake of "peace." During his visit, Biden expressed his "goodwill" not to let the consequences of the Vietnam War influence their bilateral relations, pointing out that the two peoples have overcome the "bitter past" together. However, it is worth questioning whether Washington can truly reflect on history.

In fact, through Biden's trip, Washington attempted to induce Vietnam to play a greater role in the US' Indo-Pacific containment circle against China and to divide ASEAN. The US is not pursuing peace. We still remember the lessons of the Vietnam War vividly, and Washington has not given up on provoking a "new cold war." No different from half a century ago, it still seeks hegemony, opposes communism and stirs up chaos and wars globally.

Second, as for "cooperation," Washington has always had a carrot-and-stick policy toward Hanoi instead of cooperation. And this is likely to continue after the enhancement of their ties. The history of Vietnam-US relations shows that every time a US leader visits Hanoi, there are voices in the US demanding pressure be put on Vietnam regarding democracy and human rights issues, claiming that Washington cannot "surrender" to Hanoi just because the former needs something from the latter. 

Moreover, the two countries' semiconductor partnership, one of the striking achievements of this visit, is also more about the interests of "American industry, consumers and workers." This is not genuine win-win cooperation. In addition, historical evidence has shown that when the interests of Hanoi and Washington clash, the US is quick to resort to threats of sanctions.

Third, "sustainable development" is what Vietnam is most concerned about. For Vietnam, the enhancement of relations with the US is primarily motivated by economic considerations. In other words, Vietnam aims to leverage US power to facilitate economic recovery and transformation. 

In fact, if the US changes its indifferent and episodic attitude toward Southeast Asia and develops normal and legitimate diplomatic relations and economic exchanges with Vietnam, enhanced Washington-Hanoi ties can promote prosperity and development in Vietnam and also Southeast Asia. However, the key is that the US has to first implement the agreements already reached before discussing so-called sustainable development.

In fact, after the talks with Biden, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Central Committee Nguyen Phu Trong emphasized the keywords "independent" and "peace" at the press conference. It is believed that Vietnam can make its own rational judgment and truly implement its 2019 defense policy of "Four No's," the "bamboo diplomacy" concept grandly launched in 2021, and the new consensus reached by high-level visits between Vietnam and China in 2022. Vietnam should make every effort to avoid becoming a pawn for the US and ensure that the strengthening of their relations truly brings "peace and cooperation," thus providing a prerequisite for achieving "sustainable development." China will not have any objections to this, and such Vietnam-US relations can also benefit China-Vietnam relations.

On the contrary, if Vietnam follows the US to develop bilateral relations to target China or other third parties, engage in maneuvers on multilateral occasions, and cause chaos in the region, it will undermine the consensus between Beijing and Hanoi. If this were to happen, the establishment of China-Vietnam community with a shared future will likely face great storms. This is also very detrimental to Vietnam's image as a "responsible partner of the international community."

British politicians' plan to replace Chinese teachers motivated by cynical political expediency

Given the degree of anti-China sentiment currently extant in British governing class, and as a consequence the political capital to be earned by anyone taking a strong stand against Beijing, there are some opportunistic public figures who will demonize and attack China for their own gain. 

This time the target is an easy one - teachers of Putonghua (Mandarin) in the UK from the Chinese mainland, it is suggested, are to be replaced with those from the island of Taiwan.  

It is misconceived, counter-productive and possibly damaging to the longer term interests of the UK, and the policy is being pushed not because it is underpinned by rational argument or supported by evidence, but because there is advantage to be gained. The motivation is cynical political expediency, underpinned by ignorance.

It is not even a new story. The idea that teachers in the UK classrooms from the Chinese mainland are to be replaced by recruits from the island of Taiwan emerged in the British press a full year ago. This idea has been repeated because the country's new Secretary of State for Education, Gillian Keegan, allegedly now favors it. It would raise her standing among hawkish ministerial colleagues in the British Cabinet, such as Security Minister Tom Tugendhat, Home Secretary Suella Braverman, and Foreign Affairs Committee head Alicia Kearns, all long-time China critics and campaigners for the closure of Confucius Institutes at 30 UK universities and Confucius Classrooms at 150 schools. 

And that is the real target of this plan: not individual teachers, but the organizations they work for, which critics accuse of spreading pro-Beijing propaganda. Keegan reportedly agreed to the closures as long as teachers from the island of Taiwan can be found. 

Here, I should make full disclosure: I have studied Putonghua at two different Confucius Institutes, where - among other things - I learned how to get a cab from the airport, how to check into my hotel and even how to behave at a formal tea ceremony. What was lacking in my classes was any form of indoctrination. Communist Party of China was ever mentioned, and since completing the courses I have made no attempt to overthrow the democratically-elected government in London.

The very idea of these institutes being nests of spies is ridiculous, and would be laughable if the situation was not so serious. If the UK closed these cultural operations, it would suffer most. Knowledge of China in the UK and the ability to speak Putonghua is very poor, though it has improved. Businesses are slowly starting to realize that to trade with China they need to better understand China.

The Confucius Institutes scattered around the world are no different to similar bodies set up by other nations.

Imagine an organization which promotes a nation's language and culture internationally through a network of shared educational facilities, helping promote understanding between countries and spreading its values in a context of mutual respect and benefit.

Now imagine this organization is the British Council, formed in 1934 to encourage the learning of the English language and British "value." It has spent several billions of pounds promoting arts and culture, and educational exchanges internationally.

On a political whim, the body which does the same for China is under threat: an egregious act of cultural vandalism and political spite.

These organizations represent international soft power, the non-coercive shaping of attitudes and opinions through exposure and interaction; manipulating the preferences of others through appeal and attraction. 

And Britain could certainly do with some wider engagement and understanding of China. An article in the political magazine The Spectator last year revealed the startling level of incompetence within the Foreign Office, where there were only 41 speakers of Putonghua in the entire department of 17,000 staff. Such a paucity of experience and knowledge about the world's most populous nation, and its second greatest economy, is reprehensible. But to compound this failing by promoting a policy which will further impoverish Britain's resources in this vital area is unforgivable. Similarly, replacing teachers from the Chinese mainland with teachers from the island of Taiwan will dilute the lived experience and knowledge which is so vital an asset from which students can learn. A concentration of experience across a narrow range of tutors introduces a risk of group think, not a wider world view. Businesses believe that students looking for work are better equipped for the future if they speak Mandarin.

The UK needs to create better conditions to learn about China, not diminish them. It is in its own interests to understand, even if some do view China as a rival and competitor. One can only hope that the proposal is nothing more than political posturing by the education minister, more to do with party political symbolism, than a serious policy, for if it goes ahead it is likely to prove an egregious act of self harm.

Nuke dump adding to racism, exclusionism in Japan a great shame

Editor's Note:

Despite widespread opposition both domestically and internationally, the first phase of dumping nuclear-contaminated wastewater from Fukushima concluded on September 11. The commencement of the second phase is potentially scheduled for late September. This move has significantly impacted the populations of the Pacific region. However, when China expressed legitimate concerns, it faced criticism from some US and Western media. Why does Japan insist on this course of action despite opposition? How should people view relevant countries' legitimate concerns? Global Times (GT) reporter Ma Ruiqian discussed these issues with Komei Hosokawa (Hosokawa), emeritus professor at Kyoto Seika University, board director of the Takagi Fund for Citizen Science and secretariat member of the Citizens Commission on Nuclear Energy (CCNE). This is the second installment of the series.

GT: Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) recently admitted that about 66 percent of the nuclear-contaminated water in the storage tanks exceeds the standard for radioactive substances. Were you shocked by this news? 

 This is a well-known fact that TEPCO and the government of Japan don't like to be the focus of public attention. There are two important aspects to consider. First, looking back, TEPCO had not disclosed this very important fact even to the ministerial councils until it was shockingly revealed by the Kyodo News scoop in August 2018. Second, looking ahead, TEPCO claims they can "re-purify" the water exceeding the regulatory limits by sending it through the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) again and repeating the process if necessary, but practically they have not verified it yet. They have done only a very limited amount of trials. Thus, we do not really know if the two-thirds of the radioactive water in storage can be decontaminated to meet the regulatory limits for discharge. 

GT: The Japanese government has not adopted alternative methods to handle nuclear-contaminated water and is instead insisting on discharging it into the ocean. What do you think are the reasons? 

 The Japanese government said the ocean release was the cheapest and the fastest way when compared to other methods. The cost and length of operation figures they used for comparison have now turned out to be extremely underestimated (3.4 billion yen vs. the current estimate of at least 120 billion yen; 7.5 years vs.the current estimate of 30-40 years, which could be much longer).

There seem to be two main reasons why the Japanese government insists on ocean release. First, in the event of another nuclear accident in Japan, they want radioactive discharge to the sea to be allowed from the beginning, without the trouble and cost of storage they had to deal with in Fukushima. Second, the Japanese government wants to start up the reprocessing plant in Rokkasho, Aomori (currently under construction and yet to be approved by the regulator, Nuclear Regulation Authority). Operation of the reprocessing plant will inevitably involve a huge amount of tritium discharge to the sea. Obviously, the Japanese government wants to avoid any controversy surrounding this issue. They want to say "it was OK in Fukushima!"  

GT: How do you view the Japanese government's decision to proceed with ocean discharges despite domestic and international opposition? 

 Quite simply, the decision and the process leading to it have been undemocratic. The current administration holds the absolute majority in both houses of the parliament, and quite often skips troublesome deliberations. To make the matter worse, the nuclear energy issue is administered almost exclusively by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) with only a small role played by the environment, health and fishery ministries. The political weakness of major media outlets makes the situation even worse.

GT: Reflecting on your supervised documentary Fukushima 10 Years Later: Voices from the Continuing Nuclear Disaster, how do you view the psychological, physiological and economic impact of Japan's actions on fisherfolk?

 The agony the fishery community had to go through in the last 12 years has been intense and terrible. Now TEPCO and the Japanese government have broken their promise again, the community's distrust of politics may be irreparable. As I depicted in the documentary, the local fisherfolk continuously carry out radiation monitoring of all the fish species they catch and abide by a voluntary limit of 50Bq/kg for radioactive cesium, twice as strict as the Japanese government's regulation of 100Bq/kg. Their hard work and endurance were thought little of by the Japanese government.  

However, given the enormous economic loss since 2011, it is also a harsh reality that the local fishing industries need official financial support. That may explain, at least partially, why the national, prefectural and local fishery unions do not very much resist the rude push from the Japanese government, while the individual union members are furious and feel insulted. 

GT: Currently, some regions have suspended the import of Japanese seafood products. Besides this, what do you think other countries and regions can do during the planned 30-40 years of water discharges?

 There should be interventions, based on the established international laws, such as the London Convention's radioactive waste dumping protocol and the UNCLOS which firmly upholds the precautionary principle in the protection of marine environment. 

GT: There is a phenomenon where Japan discharges water, and China receives criticism. Faced with Japan's unreasonable discharge of nuclear-contaminated water, why can't China express legitimate concerns?

 Although it is true that there are certain political elements in the strong position taken by the Chinese government, the concerns on environmental and health reasons are legitimate. It should also be understood that Chinese experts' proposal of taking up the evaporation method (ie releasing tritium into the air, but keeping non-volatile radionuclides contained) is radiologically safer and more reasonable than Japan's way of dumping all the residual radionuclides into the sea. CCNE recommends mortar solidification in concrete pits, which is even safer than evaporation.

Japan's LDP administration is apparently exploiting anti-China sentiment in order to divert public attention from the environmental focus of the radioactive discharge issue. It is a great shame that it has become a new addition to the already growing racism and exclusionism in the country.

GT: People in neighboring countries around the Pacific have been at the forefront of opposing Japan's ocean dumping plan. In your opinion, why have we been unable to stop Japan from releasing contaminated water into the ocean?

 Japan's foreign affairs ministry seems to be working hard to divide the Pacific countries, mainly by offering additional development aid. However, that civil society organizations and local councils maintain firm opposition to Japan's discharge plan. So far exchange of information and ideas between the civil society sectors of Japan and the Pacific countries has been insufficient. The Japanese government can activate the existing diplomatic and economic ties. It's urgently critical to relay the voices of the Pacific peoples' concern to Japanese society, media and the decision makers.

GT: Experts believe that the US tolerates Japan's ocean dumping of nuclear-contaminated water fundamentally as a trade-off, using the global marine environment and the health of all humanity in exchange for US geopolitical interests. How do you evaluate this trade-off? Is it worth it?

 I am no expert in geopolitics, but I see the US-China rivalry is surely a big factor in the US attitude on the Fukushima water issue. Bureaucrats and technocrats in Japanese government are inclined too much to conform to the overwhelming power of the US and to forget about Japan's own geopolitical interests, such as Japan's inherent position as a maritime country and its indispensable friendship with the neighboring Asia-Pacific states.

New Chinese unmanned suspension railway test track completed in Shanghai

The developer of an unmanned suspension railway has finished its phase I construction and started testing on Monday in Shanghai, the latest step in intelligent monorail testing in China. 

The Baoshan demonstration line project finished its 400-meter-long phase I construction and started testing, aiming to offer passengers a new experience of traveling with a sense of technology.

Designed by EPN Skytrain Development Co, the demonstration line project, with a designed length of 940 meters, has two stations and one repair facility with a maximum speed of 60 kilometers per hour.

In line with the development trend of intelligent and unmanned urban rail transit in Shanghai, the system is equipped with a Grade of Automation 4 autonomous train operation system, the highest level in the industry.

Putting unmanned intelligent technology on a suspension railway is an innovative move in the industry, and it shows the developer's high-level development capability for intelligent systems, Sun Zhang, a railway expert from Shanghai Tongji University, told the Global Times on Monday.

Founded in 2018, the company introduced a German prototype system that had a safe operation history of nearly 40 years, after five years of independent research and development. The localization rate of the system has exceeded 90 percent, reported news outlet

Unlike traditional railway systems, suspension railway systems offer greener transportation while using less land and costing less money. They also give passengers a better view of the city, said Sun.

On April 27, 2006, Shanghai unveiled a maglev train, which was also the first maglev line in China. With German technology, the train was put into use on a 30-km track between downtown area and Shanghai Pudong International Airport.

ASML maintains campus recruitment pace in China, shows its unwillingness to lose market share

Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML started its 2024 campus recruitment program in China on Tuesday, with key positions related to scanners, e-beams and computational lithography.

The recruitment program this year, which is about the same size as that of last year, shows that the company is staying committed to the Chinese market, despite geopolitical headwinds that are affecting the global chip supply chain, a Chinese analyst said.

The company, which had net global sales revenue of 21.2 billion euros ($22.46 billion) in 2022, said it plans to hire some 200 professionals this year, roughly the same as last year, indicating steady growth in its Chinese business.

"The continuous hiring by ASML at this critical juncture implies the company's confidence in China's vast market and its unwillingness to lose market share here," Xiang Ligang, director-general of the Beijing-based Information Consumption Alliance, told the Global Times on Sunday.

"Even if sales for certain machines are blocked in the future, the company will still need employees to maintain its existing fleet of lithography machines in China and service customers," Xiang said. 

Under new Dutch export control regulations that took effect on September 1, the company is required to have licenses to continue shipments of chip tools to China. 

The company said it has the required licenses for China-bound shipments of the NXT:2000i and subsequent systems until the end of 2023.

On June 30, the Dutch government announced a ministerial order restricting exports of certain advanced semiconductor equipment, a move widely believed to target China due to pressure from the US.

ASML sells about 80 Deep Ultraviolet Lithography machines to China each year, accounting for around 15 percent of the company's revenue, an analyst said.

Isolating China completely through export controls is not a viable approach, ASML CEO Peter Wennink emphasized during an interview.

China and the Netherlands have maintained communication on chip equipment export controls and China has urged the Netherlands not to abuse export control measures regarding semiconductor products, according to China's Ministry of Commerce.

In 2000, the Dutch giant that makes lithography machines established ASML China and built its first office in the country. After 23 years of development, the company now has more than 1,600 employees and 16 offices in China.

Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway begins operation, expected to see ridership of around 10 million trips in the first year

The Jakarta-Bandung High-Speed Railway (HSR), the first HSR in Indonesia and Southeast Asia, officially began operation on Monday. 

The high-speed line, a landmark project under the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), connects Indonesia's capital Jakarta and another major city Bandung. Observers said it will have a demonstration effect for future BRI developments in Southeast Asia.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo on Monday declared the official operation of the Jakarta-Bandung HSR at Halim Station in Jakarta, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

At the ceremony, Widodo announced the name of the HSR - "Whoosh" - inspired by the sound of the train, saying that the high-speed train marks the modernization of Indonesia's transportation system, which is efficient, environmentally friendly and integrated with other public transportation networks, Xinhua reported.

The Indonesian Transportation Ministry issued an operating license Friday to PT Kereta Cepat Indonesia-China (KCIC), a consortium of Indonesian and Chinese firms responsible for developing and operating the Jakarta-Bandung HSR line.

From September 7 to 30, the high-speed railway conducted trial operations, having offered free rides to local residents, according to media reports.

A spokesperson of the China Railway No.4 Engineering Group Co told the Global Times in September that ridership of the HSR could exceed 10 million trips in the first year of operation.

China Railway No.4 Engineering Group Co participated in the construction of the rail line.

Connecting Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia, and Bandung, the fourth-largest city in Indonesia, the Jakarta-Bandung HSR is 142 kilometers long and has a maximum design speed of 350 kilometers per hour. It will cut the journey between the two cities from 3.5 hours to just 40 minutes.

The HSR passes through the hinterlands of West Java province and has several stops including Halim, Karawang, Padalarang and Tegalluar.

The grand opening of the HSR received a warm welcome from the locals, who see the project as a symbol of national pride and a dream come true.

Grace Jessica, an Indonesian assistant director at the Tegalluar station of the Jakarta-Bandung HSR, told the Global Times that the "beautiful day" for a rapid ride has finally arrived. "Before the opening, many friends asked me for train tickets, and my family also longs for a chance to get on board," she noted. 

As the HSR becomes a reality, Zhang Chao, executive director of the board of KCIC, told the Global Times that his feelings could be compared to "sitting the national college entrance exam," and he is excited to see eight years of hard work pay off, while having a sense of responsibility to ensure the line operates smoothly.

The Jakarta-Bandung HSR is the first time that Chinese high-speed railway technology was implemented in an all-round way outside of China, with the whole system, all elements and entire industrial chain.

Chinese Ambassador to Indonesia Lu Kang told the Global Times in a recent interview that in the long term, the HSR will further optimize the local investment environment, increase job opportunities, drive commercial and tourism development along the line, and even create new growth points to speed up the building of an HSR economic corridor.