Tracking People’s Daily — October 8, 2020

We’re still in holiday mode, so the paper’s a smaller edition. On the front page, there’s this story about consumption having become the driving force for the Chinese economy. It says that “last year, the contribution rate of consumption to economic growth was 57.8%…Last year, the Engel’s coefficient of Chinese residents was 28.2%, a decline for eight consecutive years.” Engel’s coefficient is the proportion of money spent on food in household expenses, and is seen as an indicator of a nation’s standard of living. The figure falls as a country’s economic growth makes its people wealthier, and tends to rise when they get poorer.

On page 3, Yang Jiechi is heading to Sri Lanka, UAE, Algeria, and Serbia. Next MoFA spokesperson on the human rights tussle at the UN. Hua Chunying said (English version) that “nearly 70 countries spoke at the Third Committee of the 75th UN General Assembly, supporting and echoing China’s position. Among them, Pakistan made a joint statement on Hong Kong-related issues on behalf of 55 countries, and Cuba made a joint statement on Xinjiang-related issues on behalf of 45 countries, supporting China’s position and measures on Hong Kong-related and Xinjiang issues…These countries appreciate that China’s Xinjiang has taken a series of measures in accordance with the law to deal with the threats of terrorism and extremism and protect the human rights of the people of all ethnic groups in Xinjiang. These countries emphasize that non-interference in the internal affairs of sovereign states is an important principle of the UN Charter, and they firmly oppose the politicization of human rights issues and double standards, and they oppose unwarranted accusations and unreasonable interference in China.”

She then added: “Some Western countries have their own human rights abuses, the refugee problem has been delayed for a long time, humanitarian crises have repeatedly staged, racism, extremism, and minority issues have risen, and anti-Semitic, anti-Muslim, and anti-African remarks and vicious incidents frequently occur. Unilateral coercive measures such as economic blockades and financial sanctions are often taken against other countries, which seriously violates the basic human rights of other countries. What qualifications do they have to make irresponsible comments on the human rights situation of other countries?”

More on this, with Zhang Jun’s remarks about China’s human rights achievements. Also check out this Xinhua coverage of how the new national security law has brought about peaceful times in Hong Kong.