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The Italian side looks forward to enhancing cooperati

tion with China on jointly building the Belt and Road, She said.

Noting that the history of Italy-China exchanges for the past 50 years has been a history of dia

logue and friendship, the speaker said the Italian Senate is willing to facilitate exchanges between the two cou

ntries’ legislative institutions, and continue to make contributions to deepening Italy-China friendly cooperation.

Xi arrived in Rome Thursday for a state visit to Italy, the first stop of his three-nation Europe tour, which will also take him to Monaco and France.

hinese authorities have unveiled detailed measures to implement valu

e-added tax reform, a key step to boost market vitality and stabilize economic growth.

Starting April 1 this year, the 16 percent VAT rate that applies to manufa

cturing and other sectors will be lowered to 13 percent, while the rate for construction, tran

sport and other sectors will be reduced from 10 percent to 9 percent, said a joint statement released on Th

ursday by the Ministry of Finance, State Taxation Administration and the General Administration of Customs.

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The 10 percent deduction rate, which applies to buyers of ag

ricultural goods, will be cut to 9 percent, said the statement.

“The VAT reform is not simply lowering the tax rate, but focusing on the integration with the overall tax reform. It has continued to ma

ke progress toward the long-term goal of establishing a modern VAT system, and it also leaves room for cutting the number of VAT brac

kets from three to two in the future,” said Wang Jianfan, director of the department of taxation under the Ministry of Finance.

To implement the statutory taxation principle, China will also accelerate legislation to deepen VAT reform, Wang said.

The joint statement came after Premier Li Keqiang said on Wednesday that China will imp

lement a series of measures to cut VAT rates and ease the tax burden in almost all industries.

Earlier this month, Li said in his 2019 Government Work Repo

rt that VAT reform was key to improving the tax system and achieving better income distribution.

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Our moves to cut tax on this occasion aim at an accommo

dative effect to strengthen the basis for sustained growth while also considering the need to ensu

re fiscal sustainability. It is a major decision taken at the macro policy level in support of the efforts to en

sure stable economic growth, employment, and structural adjustments,” Li said in the report.

Value-added tax-a major type of corporate tax der

ived from the sale of goods and services-reductions will benefit most of the companies, said Yang We

iyong, an associate professor at the Beijing-based University of International Business and Economics.

“The VAT reductions can effectively lighten the tax burden of en

terprises, thereby increasing the investment by ent

erprises, boosting demand and improving the economic structure,” Yang added.

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And if parliament *actually* says what it wantsad to ask, didn’t yo

  It’s very likely that any consensus that could be reached across the Commons would be a softer Brexit than the one May is currently pursuing.

  That, I am afraid, is still a fairly open-ended answer. It might mean the need to renegotiate, which would mean a longer exten

sion, which would mean being in the EU elections, which could mean a second referendum, ultimately.

  The key point here is that cross-party consensus might soun

d nice, but on an issue as divisive as Brexit, it’s as likely as anything to blow up both main parties.

  While things are far from rosy and three weeks is not enough t

ime to sort much, it’s worth noting that while Brexit might not be going terribly well, the last thr

ee years have been a huge learning curve for the entire UK. We know more now than we did.

  So while the next bit of the Brexit process might look crunchy, the decisions made in the coming days will not be made lightly.

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With the Israeli elections approaching and Netanyahu da

  amaged by a pending indictment stemming from a corruption investigatio

n, it became increasingly clear that Trump would look to bolster one of his closest international partners.

  Netanyahu in recent weeks had begun to renew his push for the US to recognize the Go

lan Heights as part of Israel. Earlier this month, he brought US ambassador to Israel David Friedman and

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, to the Israeli-occupied territory, touting its strategic imp

ortance. Graham, a close ally of the President’s, promised Netanyahu he would personally lobby Trump to deliver.

  The Israeli ambassador’s visit was a precursor to Trump’s announcement on Thursday, a sen

ior administration official told CNN. The Golan Heights recognition had been in the works for sev

eral weeks, the official said, and culminated in a series of meetings between the President and his senior staff this week.

  US officials have offered no explanation as to w

hy Trump decided to take this step now, rather than wait until after Israel’s April 9 elections.

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The timing is bad. There’s no question about it that making

  move like this that would even give the appearance of support to the incumbent pri

me minister is — it will be viewed by some as problematic,” said Jonathan Schanzer, an expert at the Fo

undation for Defense of Democracies who has previously called for the US to recognize the Golan Heights.

  But Schanzer pointed out that past US presidents have also sought to sway Israeli electi

ons. President Bill Clinton, for example, invited Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres to the White Ho

use to sign an anti-terror pact at the White House just under a month before Peres faced reelection.

  Trump, though — who enjoys sky-high popularity in Israel — will welcome Netanyahu to the White House for meetings

and a dinner over two days just two weeks before Israeli elections. And he is handing Netanyahu an achievement sought by successive Israeli adm

inistrations.Trump has sought to leave his imprint on the politics of another close US ally, the United Kingdom.

  After openly advocating for the United Kingdom to vote to leave the European Union as a presidential candidate, Trump as president has done little

to disguise his views of UK’s May and her handling of the matter, which has drawn scorn from all sides in the United Kingdom.

  Hours before he met May at her Chequers estate outside London in July, the Sun newspaper published an interview with Trump in which he underc

ut his counterpart and suggested one of her political rivals, former London mayor Boris Johnson, might perform the job better.

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Greater opening-up pledged to bolster education meets

China will expand opening-up in education, enhance mutual learning with different countri

es and jointly push forward the development of education, President Xi Jinping said on Wednesday.

Xi made the remark during a meeting with Ha

rvard University President Lawrence Bacow at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.

Xi said China advocates mutual learning, encourages its students to

study overseas and supports exchanges and cooperation in education with other countries.

He said he hopes more positive outcomes can be achieved from people-to-people exchanges between China and the United States.

Bilateral exchanges and cooperation in education are impor

tant for China-US relations because they help enhance public support for those relations, he said.

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Vice-Premier Liu to hold trade talks with US officials in Beijing

  Chinese Vice-Premier Liu He will hold a new round of high-level China-US economic and trade consultation with US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer a

nd Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin in Beijing from March 28 to 29, the Ministry of Commerce said on Thursday.

  Liu will visit Washington in early April for further cons

ultation, the ministry said.The Government Work Report released on March 5 has charted a co

urse for China’s economic development for this year. By setting fairly robust growth targets, the country is s

et to be the locomotive pulling the world economy amid global economic headwinds. A number of pro-growth eff

orts have been unveiled to spur innovation and continue opening-up. The country has also released the Foreign Inv

estment Law to better protect the rights of foreign businesses in China. China Daily polled senior executives from mul

tinational corporations to understand their positioning, perception and predictions of the Chinese market.

  Q1: The year 2019 marks the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China. What in your opini

on are China’s biggest achievements to date? What are the biggest achievements made by your company so far?

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Theresa May asks EU for Brexit delayIn his press conference, Don

the President of the European Council, made it clear that the EU would only

approve a delay to the Brexit process if the House of Commons approves the Withdra

wal Agreement signed by Theresa May last year. That suggests a third “meaningful vote” must be held in Parliament next week.

another vote. Earlier this week he ruled that the government could not hold repeated votes on the same issue without substantive changes.

The government will hope that Tusk’s statement will be sufficient to satisfy Bercow’s demand.

After that, there’s the question of persuading MPs to support the deal.

Theresa May lost her first meaningful vote by a historic margin of 230 in January, and lost her second last week by 149.

May faces an uphill challenge to pass the deal a third time – 75 MPs will have to change their mind

s. The Prime Minister will hope that the looming and clear threat of no deal will force opposition MPs to support her deal.

The trouble is, there’s a small group of hardcore Brexit-supporting MPs o

n her own side who would be happy to see the UK crash out without a deal – a clean bre

ak from the EU with no complications. Quite how she persuades them to get onside is unclear.

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ameras found by police hidden inside a hotel wall outletand hair

The site had more than 4,000 members, 97 of whom paid a $44.95 monthly fee to access extra features, such as the ability to replay certa

in live streams. Between November 2018 and this month, police said, the service brought in upwards of $6,000.

“There was a similar case in the past where illegal cameras were (secretly installed) and were consistently and secretly

watched, but this is the first time the police caught where videos were broadcast live on the internet,” police said.

South Korea has a serious problem with spy cameras and illicit filming. In 2017, more than

6,400 cases of illegal filming were reported to police compared to around 2,400 in 2012.

Last year, tens of thousands of women took to the streets of Seoul and other cities to p

rotest against the practice and demand action, under the slogan “My Life is Not Your Porn.”

Play VideoIllicit spy cam cases skyrocket in South Korea 02:24

In response, Seoul launched a special squad of women inspectors, w

ho have been conducting regular inspections of the city’s 20,000 or so public toilets to searc

h for spy cameras, though some critics have denounced the move as a superficial response to a societal issue.

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