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双语新闻播报(October 26)

chinadaily.com.cn 2023-10-26 14:45


> Market consumption surges 8.4% in Beijing, retail sales see double-digit growth
前三季度北京经济稳步恢复 市场总消费额同比增长8.4%

This photo taken on Oct 15, 2023 shows a floral decoration at Xidan area in Beijing, capital of China. [Photo/Xinhua]

Beijing's overall economy maintained its recovery momentum, and the quality of development continued to improve in the first three quarters of the year, local authorities said on Friday.


The city's GDP saw a year-on-year increase of 5.1 percent, to reach about 3.17 trillion yuan ($433.5 billion) from January to September, according to a news conference.


The added value of the primary industry reached 7.14 billion yuan, a decrease of 4.2 percent. The added value of the secondary industry dropped by 0.1 percent year-on-year to reach 452.91 billion yuan. And that of the tertiary industry reached around 2.71 trillion yuan, up 6.1 percent year-on-year, data from the local statistics bureau showed.


Information transmission, software and information technology services, along with the financial industry, contributed over 70 percent to the growth of the service sector.


The transportation, storage and postal industry, as well as the accommodation and catering industry, continue to recover with double-digit growth in terms of added value.


Market consumption increased by 8.4 percent during the period. Total retail sales of consumer goods increased by 2.5 percent, with double-digit growth in retail sales of gold, silver, jewelry, clothing, textiles and cosmetics.


In the first three quarters, production demand gradually recovered, employment and prices remained stable, and personal income continued to increase, according to the news conference.


> No matter your age, who can resist a tasty, low-priced meal?


At noon, Tongxin Cafeteria near Shanghai’s Jing'an Temple downtown has a queue that shows its multi-generational popularity. The menu, with over 60 dishes rotated daily, caters to a spectrum of tastes.


These cafeterias, once known as "senior canteens," were originally established to provide healthy meals at affordable prices to older folks who might not be getting enough nutrition at home.


From 2019 to 2021, the Shanghai government set a goal of building 200 new community canteens, bringing the total at the end of last year to 1,608.从2019年到2021年,上海政府制定了新建200家社区食堂的目标,2022年年底的总数达到1608家。


A basic meal with one meat dish and two vegetables costs less than 20 yuan ($2.70), far cheaper than prices in mainstream downtown restaurants.


And all meals are prepared on site with fresh ingredients.


The government supports these cafeterias – sometimes with rent-free space; sometimes with reduced water and electricity charges.


Li Jiajun, the manager of a local community canteen, said their prices are 20 percent below market rates because of the government assistance.


His canteen prioritizes elderly diners from 10:30 to 11:30am and 4:30-5:30pm.


Apart from those hours, people of all ages are welcome.


Li said cafeteria managers are required to maintain detailed records, including 48-hour food samples and daily uploads to food safety platforms.


This approach ensures the traceability of all ingredients.


Some community cafeterias have become so popular that they appear on WeChat and other lifestyle sharing platforms.


At the community canteen in the Youyi Road Subdistrict in Baoshan, diners can use their smartphones to choose dishes and pay their bills.


The cost is based on the weight of the food to avoid waste.


In the Community AI Canteen in Hongqiao Subdistrict, Shanghai's first staff-free community canteen uses robots to cook and serve meals, while an artificial intelligence system offers diet advice.


The site serves about 300 customers a day.


The West Bund community canteen, located in a core area on the west bank of Huangpu River, serves over 1,000 people daily, with weekends reaching up to 3,000 customers.


Perched amid the riverside scenery, the site opened in July.


Patrons include local residents, tourists, joggers and delivery staff, said the director Xia Rui.负责人夏锐(音)说,顾客包括当地居民、游客、慢跑者和送餐员。


Li, a delivery worker who frequently dines at the community cafeteria, volunteers to deliver meals to vulnerable people in the community.


"I've always enjoyed the public services provided by the community, so I thought I would show my gratitude and give something back," Li said.


"We are pleased to have younger people dining here," said a 90-year-old patron surnamed Qu. "They give the 'elderly canteen' a feeling of youthful vigor."

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