APD | Weekly top 10 hot news (Aug 20- Aug 26)



Every weekend, Asia Pacific Daily will provide you with a run-down of the latest hot news.

This week, the following hot news you should know:

Top 1 | Chinese FM attends reception marking 30th anniversary of China-ROK ties


Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi attended a reception celebrating the 30th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between China and the Republic of Korea (ROK) in Beijing on Wednesday.

At the reception, Wang and Chung Jae-ho, the ROK ambassador to China, read the congratulatory messages from the presidents of the two countries over the anniversary.

Wang said that in the past 30 years, the two countries have continuously deepened political mutual trust and officially become strategic cooperative partners with frequent and smooth exchanges at all levels.

Top 2 | China's central bank urges steady credit growth


China's central bank has urged major financial institutions to spearhead the effort in maintaining stable credit growth, it said in a statement on Monday.

In a meeting chaired by the People's Bank of China (PBOC) Governor Yi Gang, the PBOC called on financial institutions, especially state-owned banks, to play a "leading and backbone role" in maintaining the stability of total loan growth, according to the statement released after the meeting.

The central bank also called on major financial institutions to increase loan issuance to the real economy and make great efforts to improve credit support for small- and micro-sized enterprises, green development and technological innovation.

Top 3 | China says U.S. ambassador's Taiwan remarks 'expose hegemonic logic'


U.S. Ambassador to China Nicholas Burns' recent remarks about Taiwan region "called white black" and again "exposed Washington's hegemonic logic," a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Monday in response to comments made by Burns in a CNN interview.

Burns told CNN on August 19 that China's response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's Taiwan visit was an "overreaction."

China has lodged stern representations to the U.S. side multiple times over Pelosi's visit to the Taiwan region, and has clearly indicated that all consequences should be borne by the U.S. side, the spokesperson said in the statement.

"It would be unfair to say that the U.S. had not been warned about the consequences if the visit took place," the spokesperson added.

Top 4 | Japanese PM Kishida tests positive for COVID-19


Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has tested positive for COVID-19 and is recuperating at his official residence, his office said on Sunday.

They said Kishida had slight symptoms on Saturday and took a PCR test on Sunday morning, which confirmed the positive result in the afternoon.

Kishida, who just returned from week-long vacation, was due to restart work on Monday.

Amid the seventh wave of COVID-19 infections, the country reported 1,395,301 cases in the week from August 8 to 14, the highest weekly number of new cases in the world for the fourth week in a row, according to the World Health Organization.

Top 5 | UN chief has trilateral meeting with Ukrainian, Turkish presidents in Lviv


UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the western Ukrainian city of Lviv on Thursday.

Issues including grain exports, security of nuclear plants and Ukraine's reconstruction were discussed during the meeting.

At a press conference after the meeting, the leaders hailed the success of a UN-brokered agreement allowing the passage of ships from three Ukrainian Black Sea ports and said they discussed ways to improve the deal. Guterres said 21 ships had departed from Ukrainian ports under the deal in less than a month, and 15 vessels had left Istanbul for Ukraine to load up with grain and other food supplies.

Top 6 | Cuba confirms its first monkeypox case


Cuba confirmed its first case of monkeypox late on Saturday, the country's Public Health Ministry said, after detecting the viral disease in a tourist who had arrived from Italy this week.

The Italian man stayed in a rental home and traveled to various destinations in the western provinces of the Caribbean island nation before falling ill, the ministry said in a brief statement, adding that the patient remains in critical condition.

Top 7 | Germany, Canada partner on transatlantic hydrogen trade


The leaders of Canada and Germany signed a green hydrogen deal on Tuesday, laying a path for a transatlantic supply chain as Europe seeks to lessen its dependence on Russian energy.

"It's a vote of confidence for Canada as a leader in clean energy," Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said during a joint press conference with visiting German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

Russia has slashed its energy exports to Europe in response to punishing Western sanctions over the Russian-Ukraine conflict, forcing countries to scramble for alternatives.

Top 8 | Biden announces student loan relief for borrowers who need it most


U.S. President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced that most U.S. university graduates still trying to pay off student loans will get $10,000 of relief to address a decades-old headache of massive educational debt across the country.

"In keeping with my campaign promise, my administration is announcing a plan to give working and middle class families breathing room," Biden said in a statement issued less than three months before midterm congressional elections.

The proposed debt relief falls far short of some Democrats' goal of securing complete forgiveness, but is opposed by Republicans who argue that shaving any amount from graduates' loans is unfair to those who have spent years saving to pay off their own debts.

Top 9 | UN chief calls for new global consensus on cooperation to ensure collective security


UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday stressed the need to re-forge a global consensus around the cooperation required to ensure collective security.

"Our collective security demands that we seize every moment to forge a common understanding of the threats and challenges before us – and most importantly, to shape united responses to them," he told a Security Council briefing on promoting common security through dialogue and cooperation.

Guterres noted that many of the systems established decades ago are now facing challenges that were unimaginable to our predecessors such as cyber warfare, terrorism, and lethal autonomous weapons. And the nuclear risk has climbed to its highest point in decades.

Top 10 | French President Macron to travel to Algeria on August 25


French President Emmanuel Macron is planning to travel to Algeria next week, the Elysee palace announced on Saturday, saying that the official visit will take place from August 25 to 27.

Macron accepted an invitation by Algerian President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, his office said. It will be Macron's second official visit to the North African country which holds close business ties with Paris.

Relations between Macron and Tebboune last year soured when remarks made by the French president about Algeria's history led to a diplomatic dispute linked to the two country's shared colonial past.