China trims GDP target citing ‘grave challenges’
05 March 2017 | 3:55 pm
China's premier warns that the world's second-largest economy faces "grave challenges", signalling a further deceleration as he announced a trimmed 2017 GDP growth target of "around 6.5 percent".
China is witnessing its biggest wave of public dissent in a decade. Chinese universities are now sending students home in a bid to tighten COVID restrictions.
In a DW interview, Frank-Walter Steinmeier said he hoped Chinese authorities would "respect" the protesters' freedom, and expressed that he did not see a way out of Russia's war on Ukraine "at this point in time."
Authorities in at least seven districts in Guangzhou announced lifting temporary lockdowns. State media also cited a top official as saying the virus was weakening.
DW spoke to Chinese artist and dissident Ai Weiwei about the protests in China against its extreme COVID lockdowns.
Statements by authorities suggesting a relaxation of pandemic control measures look more like a move to relieve political pressure than a turnaround in policy. Experts say fully opening is still too risky.
Cities across China have rolled back some Covid-19 restrictions, requiring less testing and allowing people to isolate at home instead of in quarantine centres. The authorities have been careful not to send any signal that the relaxing of rules were in any way a response to rare displays of public discontent.
China has said it will allow COVID patients with mild symptoms to isolate at home, it has also reduced the scope of lockdowns where cases are noticed and made regional travel easier. This follows widespread protests.
A distraction campaign is underway on Twitter. If users type location tags of major Chinese cities such as Beijing, their Twitter feed will be flooded with provocative "dating spam", in a bid to distract users away from images of the protests against Covid restrictions. We tell you more in this edition of Truth or Fake.
China relies heavily on Saudi oil and is expected to sign a number of agreements with Riyadh. This is Xi's third overseas visit since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
Chinese leader Xi Jinping wrapped up a visit to Saudi Arabia with a joint statement regarding bilateral commitments. Xi also invited Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz to visit Beijing.
Could the protests against the government's zero-COVID strategy trigger political reform? DW asks an expert on social change in urban China, Björn Alpermann.
China has now relaxed many of its Covid restrictions, removing requirements for PCR tests in many places and allowing people to isolate at home. The new measures come following a wave of anti-lockdown protests.
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