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每日新闻播报(May 13)

chinadaily.com.cn 2021-05-13 14:17

A bird's-eye view of the Beisita pagoda in Suzhou, Jiangsu province. [Photo/China Daily]

>Urbanization posts steady progress

China has made steady progress in promoting new urbanization, with its population living in urban areas on the mainland totaling 901.99 million, which accounts for 63.89 percent of the total population, the National Bureau of Statistics said Tuesday, citing data from the seventh national census. The proportion of the population living in urban areas was 14.21 percentage points higher than the figure for 2010, when the previous census was conducted. The pace of growth for the past decade accelerated by 0.75 percentage points from the previous decade, said Ning Jizhe, the bureau’s head.

The rural population stood at 509.79 million, down by 164.36 million from the 2010 figure.

Accelerated population agglomeration not only reflects the trend in changes of urbanization and economic agglomeration, but also puts forward new requirements for improving the quality of urbanization and promoting coordinated development across regions, Ning said.

The Ministry of Education holds a news briefing on May 13, 2021. [Photo/moe.gov.cn]

>New round of disciplinary inspection

Fifteen teams of disciplinary inspectors were assigned and in their positions as of Monday, according to an official statement. The seventh round of routine disciplinary inspection, launched by the 19th Communist Party of China Central Committee, targets Party units in the Ministry of Education and 31 universities across the country.

Focusing on the oversight of functions and responsibilities of Party organs in universities, this new round of inspection will address major issues that hinder the high-quality development of China's higher education, the statement said.

The inspection teams will be stationed at the units assigned to them for about two months in their assigned places, during which telephone lines and mailboxes will be set up to solicit complaints and reports on the breach of disciplines by Party officials.


>Campaign against youth myopia

China has launched a five-year campaign to prevent and curb myopia among younger generations, the Ministry of Education said Tuesday. The government aims to continuously reduce the myopia rate of children and adolescents every year and effectively improve the visual health of young Chinese by 2025, according to a work plan jointly released by 15 national agencies, including the ministry.

Under the plan, the agencies will initiate special operations, such as reducing students' academic burdens, limiting their exposure to digital gadgets and ensuring one hour of outdoor activities or physical exercise every day both during and after school hours.

About 50.2 percent of Chinese children and teenagers suffered from myopia in 2019, a drop of 3.4 percentage points from the figure in 2018, a ministry survey showed.

The myopia rate in 2020 increased slightly as about 200 million students had been studying at home for months amid the COVID-19 epidemic, but the ratio still marks a decrease from the 2018 figure, according to the ministry.

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi receives his second dose of a coronavirus disease (COVID-19) vaccine at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) hospital in New Delhi, India, April 8, 2021. [Photo/Agencies]

>COVID variant found in 44 countries

The World Health Organization said Wednesday the B.1.617 variant of COVID-19, first found in India in October, had been detected in more than 4,500 samples uploaded to an open-access database "from 44 countries in all six WHO regions".

"And the WHO has received reports of detections from five additional countries," it said in its weekly epidemiological update on the pandemic.

Outside of India, it said Britain had reported the largest number of COVID cases caused by the variant.

The WHO said the spread of B.1.617, alongside other more transmittable variants, appeared to be one of several factors fuelling India's dramatic surge in new cases and deaths.

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