News / Asia

China Offers Earthquake Condolences to Japan

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao gestures as he answers questions during a press conference after the closing session of the annual National People's Congress in Beijing's Great Hall of the People Monday, March 14, 2011.
Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao gestures as he answers questions during a press conference after the closing session of the annual National People's Congress in Beijing's Great Hall of the People Monday, March 14, 2011.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao offered condolences to Japan, which is recovering from a massive earthquake and resulting tsunamis. His comments came Monday at a news conference that is regularly held at the end of the annual session of the country’s legislature. 

In spite of a recent territorial dispute with Japan, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao made a special effort at the end of his two-hour news conference Monday to say something about the recovery efforts there.

Wen extended China’s condolences for the lives lost in Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunamis and expressed sympathy to the Japanese people.

He says China has empathy because it is also an earthquake-prone country and he pointed to Japanese aid to China after the Wenchuan earthquake in 2008.

China has provided $4.5 million in humanitarian aid to Japan and a Chinese rescue team arrived there, Sunday.  Wen says China is ready to provide more assistance, as needed.

Wen’s comments came at the end of the lengthy news conference that marks the end of the annual session of the National People’s Congress.

Earlier Monday, the legislature’s nearly 3,000 delegates approved China’s next five-year plan, which sets out the Communist leadership’s overall goals from this year through 2015.

Wen says one of the government’s main concerns for this year is controlling inflation.

Wen says inflation is like a tiger - once it has been set free, it will be, in his words, "very difficult" to put it back in its cage.

He says there are external reasons for inflation - specifically higher global prices for oil and grain.  He also blames the so-called quantitative easing monetary policies in countries like the United States for causing what he describes as "drastic fluctuations" in currency exchange rates and commodity prices.

The Chinese premier says rising labor costs and rising prices of basic goods inside China are also fueling inflation.

Wen acknowledges the need for political reform as essential for the continued success of economic restructuring.  But he gave few details and said political reform in China would be a gradual process.

Meanwhile, Mr. Wen says it is not right to draw an analogy between China and the turbulent political situation in the Middle East.  He says the government feels that the lives of ordinary Chinese people have improved to the point that the country is now the second largest economy in the world.  At the same time, he acknowledges several potential problems - including the fact that China is a developing country with a large population and what he calls a "weak economic foundation and uneven development".

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regreti
X
Zana Omer
March 28, 2015 1:19 AM
The Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Islamic State Prisoners Talk of Curiosity, God, Regret

The Islamic State fighter, a prisoner of Kurdish YPG forces, asked his family asking for forgiveness: "I destroyed myself and I destroyed them along with me." The Syrian youth was one of two detainees who spoke to VOA’s Kurdish Service about the path they chose; their names have been changed and identifying details obscured. VOA's Zana Omer reports.
Video

Video Germanwings Findings Raise Issue of Psychological Testing for Pilots

More is being discovered about the co-pilot in the crash of Germanwings Flight 9525 in the French Alps. Investigators say he was hiding a medical condition, raising questions about the mental qualifications of pilots. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.
Video

Video Hi-tech Motorbike Helmet's Goal: Improve Road Safety

In cities with heavily congested traffic, people can get around much faster on a motorcycle than in a car. But a rider who is not sure of his route may have to stop to look at the map or consult a GPS. A Russian start-up company is working to make navigation easier for motorcyclists. Designers at Moscow-based LiveMap are developing a smart helmet with a built-in navigation system, head-mounted display and voice recognition. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Traditional push-rim wheelchairs create a lot of stress for arm, shoulder and neck muscles and joints. A redesigned chair, based on readily available bicycle technology, radically increases mobility while reducing the physical effort. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video Virginia Tavern Takes Patrons Back to Medieval Times

European martial arts are not widely practiced and are unknown by most people. A tavern in Old Town Alexandria, outside Washington, wants to change this by promoting these fighting techniques from medieval times. Through combining visual arts, martial arts and culinary arts, this tavern brings medieval history back to life. VOA's Yang Lin and Helen Wu report.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More