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  • City invites public bidding on technological problems
    The invitation conference for public bidding on the problems in transformation for scientific & technological achievements, as the opening ceremony for the related website (, was held on December 29.
    Technological problems collected from local enterprises will be assembled into the "Shuguang Project", which is sponsored by the municipal Association for the Advancement of Science (ADS) and the city's Educational Development Foundation. The successful bidders will receive funding from these two institutions.
    Also, eight local universities, including Fudan University, Jiaotong University and Tongji University, signed agreements with local companies, uniting to overcome scientific and technological difficulties. As well, 50 more experts, including two academicis, were appointed by the ADS.
    Jiang Yiren, chairman of the municipal committee of Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), addressed the conference, along with the vice chairman of the municipal committee of CPPCC, Song Yiqiao, Xie Lijuan, Huang Guancong and Wang Ronghua. --(12/30)

  • Israel Philharmonic Orchestra stages New Year's Concert
    Zubin Mehta, the well-known conductor, rehearses yesterday afternoon. Led by Mehta, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra staged a New Year's Concert at the Shanghai Exhibition Center last night.--(12/30)

  • Northern extension of Metro line opens
    The northern extension of the city's Metro Line 1 was opened on a trial basis yesterday morning.
    Authorities expect about 160,000 people to use the line every day.
    The extension starts from Shanghai Railway Station and runs to Gongfu Xincun Station, extending the total length of Metro Line 1 to 32.5 kilometers with 25 stations in all.
    On the first day of the initial use of the extension line, hundreds of thousands of residents lined up to ride the line.
    According to Shanghai Metro Operation Co Ltd, more than 1,000 passengers had made their way through Pengpu Xincun Station by 7am, one hour after the line opened. The entire line had handled 35,000 people by 11am. --(12/29)

  • Shanghai Oriental Arts Center turns on all light in Pudong
    Traffic officials in Pudong are preparing for the opening of the Shanghai Oriental Arts Center on Friday night, which is expected to attract thousands of people and could lead to congested roads.
    The new center, located opposite the Shanghai Science and Technology Museum, features a 2,000-seat symphony hall, a 1,100-seat theater and a 300-seat auditorium. The police expect more than 3,600 people to visit the center on Dingxiang Road on Friday, bringing about 900 vehicles into the area at peak times.
    In addition to a small underground garage in the center, there are three parking lots nearby, providing nearly 1,200 parking spaces. --(12/28)

  • Winter has arrived, demand for power rises
    Winter has finally arrived, local weathermen are expected to announce today.
    The arrival of winter could force more companies to shift production to weekends or night hours to spread power use and cut peak demand to ensure a steady supply for residents, power officials said yesterday.
    With temperatures hovering between 4.1 and 5 degrees Celsius yesterday, the standard was finally met to announce the arrival of winter. The season officially begins on the first of five consecutive days with daily average temperatures below 10 degrees.
    The start of winter this year on December 23 is the season's latest arrival in 10 years, according to the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau. The long-awaited winter has created some problems for power suppliers.
    Yesterday's cold weather boosted power demand to 12.74 million kilowatts, up nearly 13 percent from last winter's peak demand, according to the Shanghai Electric Power Co.
    Demand spiked as local residents and companies cranked up their heaters, which accounts for more than one third of power used during peak times.
    The city has ordered 8,000 companies to shift production to weekends to spread power use and cut peak demand during the week, and plans for more companies to shift production hours are in place as demand is expected to rise higher as more cold weather is expected, said Shanghai Electric spokesman Yu Qinde.
    Temperatures today will drop to 1 degree overnight, with the daily high hitting 4 degrees.--(12/28)

  • Cartoon program hits the city
    China's first professional cartoon TV channel kicked off in Shanghai yesterday afternoon, specifically for the audiences aged between 2 and 60.--(12/27)

  • Zheng He exhibit set for July
    The Zheng He Ocean Voyages Exhibition and International Marine Expo will visit Shanghai for only a week next year when it runs from July 8-14.
    The exhibition celebrates the 600th anniversary of the first voyage by Chinese admiral Zheng He to other territories in 1405. In addition, it will document China's navigation history and work in marine science.
    The show in Shanghai Exhibition Center will cover an area of 25,000 square meters, consisting of five exhibits introducing the history of Zheng's voyages. Other exhibits will chronicle China's navigation skills and knowledge of marine, oceans, ports and shipbuilding.
    Zheng, a Ming Dynasty (1368-1644) official who was rewarded command of the national fleet by the emperor, visited 37 countries during his 28-year navy career.
    He traveled to places throughout the South Pacific, Indian Ocean, Persian Gulf and distant Africa in seven voyages. He died on a return journey in 1433.
    Zheng, with a fleet of at least 317 ships and 37,000 men at his command, never seized land or treasure from abroad.
    "We commemorate him for his life-long efforts to promote openness of his country and exchanges among nations," said Yao Mingde, director of the expo's organizing committee.
    Part of the exhibits will be kept for establishing an ocean museum in the city.--(12/24)

  • Snow in forecast
    Local residents are cautioned to take care on slippery roads and dress warmly today and tomorrow as the forecast calls for rain mixed with snow. Temperatures will drop by 4 to 5 degrees Celsius from yesterday, with the daily high reaching 7 degrees, according to the Shanghai Meteorological Bureau. It will be 4 degrees overnight, and the daily high tomorrow should remain at 7 degrees. No rain is in the forecast so far for Christmas Day, when it will be warmer and cloudy, with temperatures hovering between 5 and 10 degrees, meteorologists said. --(12/23)

  • Fudan University hails 75th anniversary of journalism college
    Fudan University held a celebration to mark the 75th anniversary of its journalism college yesterday. As the country's oldest journalism education institute, the college signed an agreement with six major media groups, such as Wenhui-Xinmin United Press Group, Shanghai Media Group and Xinhua News Agency, to send students to intern at the city's major media outlets next year. --(12/22)

  • Metro No.4 limps ahead
    Workers laid the last stretch of track yesterday for what will become the first phase of the city's new Metro Line 4.
    A missing link that resulted from a tunnel cave-in will be completed at an unspecified date in the future, delaying the start of a 33-kilometer mass transit ring around the city.
    The completion of the rail installation at least ensures that 13 out of the line's eventual 17 stations will be in operation by the end of next year, authorities said.
    At that point, the new line will be joined at each end to Metro No. 3, allowing commuters to travel from near the Sofitel Jin Jiang hotel in Pudong in a huge counterclockwise arc to the Luwan District on the Puxi side of the Huangpu River.
    "The 13 stations, together with nine stations on Metro Line 3, form a 'C' shaped track running through the city's downtown areas," said Yu Jiakang, a senior engineer at the Shanghai Tunnel Engineering and Rail Transit Design and Research Institute.
    The damaged section, which will comprise four stations linking Luban Road Station in Puxi to Tangqiao Station in Pudong, still has a long way to go.
    On July 1, the project was near completion when water poured into a tunnel and touched off major ground subsidence near the Huangpu River.
    One building collapsed, three others titled and a part of the flood wall toppled. No one was injured, but the accident caused 150 million yuan (US$18 million) in damage and severely delayed subway construction.
    Three senior managers were arrested for malfeasance.
    Engineers said the cave-in area is deep, and the city had to import special machines from Japan to repair the damage.--(12/21)

  • Museum offers glimpse into Earth's past
    Near the Pudong International Airport, the newly opened Shanghai Museum of Geological Popular Science is easy to miss, but for local geological lovers, it is difficult to forget after a visit.
    "The museum serves the general public and is dedicated to cultural enrichment and public understanding of Earth sciences," said Lu Huangao, the museum's curator.
    With a total exhibition area of 3,600 square meters, the museum is divided into seven exhibition halls representing the Earth's history, rocks and minerals, the Earth's crust, ancient biology, the Earth's surface, the land resources in Shanghai and precious gemstones.
    Stepping into the museum and examining specimens through windows, one immediately enters a world of intriguing curiosities. One can see how Earth materials are naturally recycled and discover how rocks and fossils provide clues to the Earth's past.
    The museum hosts a rich trove of exhibits, including some 30,000 geology-related specimens and samples elaborately arranged to give an overall view of our Earth.
    The exhibits in the Earth History Hall depict - by means of a huge terrestrial globe and illustrations around the walls - the origin and development of the planet, its internal structure and the characteristics of the Earth's surface.
    The stunningly beautiful mineral collections are exhibited according to the crystal chemical classification whereas geological processes form the basis of the rock and ore collections.
    One of the highlights is a green fluorite crystal cluster from Hunan Province, which is 1.3 meters in diameter and worth some 3 million yuan (US$361,446). This natural fluorite crystal cluster consists of intergrown cubic fluorite crystals that have deep emerald green color and resinous luster.
    Another highly valued exhibit is a 3.6-meter-tall plaster crystal that is reportedly the biggest sample of its kind in the world.
    In the Gemstone Hall, an attractive collection of gemstones used for ornaments and jewelry promises to dazzle visitors. The collection contains a wide array of beautiful tumbled gemstones such as amethyst, green emeralds and agate.
    However, perhaps the most exciting exhibit for many people includes a variety of samples of precious ancient fossils.
    Two massive dinosaur skeletons form the centerpiece and capture the imagination powerfully. One of the exhibited dinosaurs was excavated in Zigong, Sichuan Province in 1996. It is a carnivorous dinosaur that roamed the planet about 140 million years ago. The dinosaur was 10 meters long and 5.3 meters tall.
    The seven-meter-tall skeleton of the other dinosaur was excavated in Lufeng County, Yunnan Province in 1968. Lufeng County is called the homeland of dinosaurs in China and contains vertebrate fossils of the earliest Jurassic Origin. Lufeng Dinosaur is one of the earliest dinosaurs discovered, dating back to the late Triassic period of the Mesozoic era.
    Dinosaurs, which are perhaps the most popular organisms of the Mesozoic, evolved in the Triassic period, but were not very diverse until the Jurassic period.
    Seven articulated ichthyosaur skeletons excavated in Guizhou Province are perhaps of the greatest scientific importance among the museum collections.
    One portion of the exhibit is solely dedicated to land resources in Shanghai. It explains to visitors how the city gradually came into being and the current geological situation of the city. --(12/20)

  • Pakistan to open 1st consulate in Shanghai
    Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz and Zhang Chunxiang, China's ambassador to Pakistan, applauded on Friday after the cornerstone is laid for Pakistan's first consulate in Shanghai.--(12/19)

  • Museum set to show ancient China's best
    Shanghai Museum staffers inspect a Tang-era flask that will go on display at an exhibition featuring relics from four Chinese dynasties. --(12/16)

  • WTPF convention held in city
    An e-business development convention sponsored by the World Trade Point Federation (WTPF) was held at the Shanghai International Convention Center on December 14.
    Bruno Masier, president of WTPF, Peter Froehler, deputy secretary-general of the UN Conference on Trade and Development, and several other UN senior officers were present at this convention, along with representatives from domestic provincial-level e-business enterprises and the government leaders of related departments.
    The convention was also saw the establishment of WTPF China Shanghai. --(12/15)

  • Han Zheng meets with Polish guests
    Shanghai Mayor Han Zheng welcomed a delegation led by Jan Ryszard Kurylczyk, governor of Pomorskie Province of Poland at the Shanghai Municipal Government Hall yesterday.
    "Shanghai maintains a favorable relationship with Poland, and I believe your visit is sure to provide you with a better understanding of the city. It will also increase cooperation and exchanges between Shanghai and Pomorskie Province," Mayor Han pointed out.
    "I expect we can cooperate in not only the financial and trade sectors, but in educational, scientific and technological fields as well," he stressed. --(12/14)

  • Auction raises funds for Fudan University
    Fudan University, one of the China's oldest and most prestigious universities, held a public auction of Fudan-related souvenirs yesterday to raise funds for its 100th anniversary celebration next year.
    The auction included 58 souvenirs donated by Fudan alumni under hammer. The auction brought in 504,000 yuan (US$60,723).
    Nearly 80 buyers registered to bid, most of whom were Fudan graduates, according to Shanghai International Commodity Auction Co Ltd, the auctioneer.
    "The auction is a precious opportunity for Fudan alumni currently at both home and abroad to show their love and contribution to the school, as well as establishing the century-old university's high image," said Fudan's Party Secretary Qin Shaode.
    Qin also donated one of his photographic works entitled "A New Morning" - the literal meaning of Fudan's name - which was auctioned off for 40,000 yuan.
    Yesterday's top price went to a painting by renowned Chinese artist Wu Lifu, who studied and taught at Fudan in the 1920s. The work sold for 70,000 yuan.
    "I was honored to contribute to my beloved university's centenarian through the meaningful auctioning format," said Tu Haiming, president of Shanghai Hodoor Real Estate Development Co Ltd, a Fudan graduate in 1983. Tu bought 19 items for 191,000 yuan yesterday. --(12/13)

  • Villa record at 26 million yuan
    The former residence of Tang Enbo, a general during the Kuomintang era, was auctioned off for 26 million yuan (US$3.13 million), the floor price, by a local company without any competitors on Thursday. The three-story garden villa was built in French style during the 1920s. It is located on Duolun Road in Hongkou District and covers an area of 1,152 square meters. The buyer declined to be identified. --(12/12)

  • Heavy fog shuts Hongqiao Airport, roads and ferries
    A dense fog rolled across Shanghai early yesterday, shutting down one of the city's airports along with highways and river traffic.
    Despite the inconvenience suffered by morning commuters, there were no major mishaps.
    The bad weather also delayed the homecoming of 7-month-old Chen Yu'an. The infant, born two months premature in Shanghai on May 1 and still suffering serious medical complications, was supposed to leave the city around midnight Thursday for a trip to her parents' home in Taiwan.
    A combination of falling temperatures and high humidity caused visibility to fall below 200 meters in most parts of the city around 4am. One of the worst-hit areas was the suburban Qingpu District, where visibility dropped to 60 meters.
    The Shanghai Meteorological Bureau declared a fog alert that remained in effect until 9:45am.
    Dozens of flights were disrupted at Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport, where normal service did not resume until nearly 9:30am.
    The bad weather forced shutdowns along all local expressways, according to the Shanghai Highway Administration.
    The A30 Expressway, the local section of the Tongjiang-Sanya National Highway and the Shanghai-Hangzhou Expressway were the first to close shortly after midnight Thursday.
    The A4 Expressway and other highways were shut down a few hours later.
    Officials said visibility on the Shanghai-Nanjing Expressway was only 30 meters at one point.
    The highways began to reopen after 8:30am, and the last one, the Shanghai-Hangzhou Express, resumed normal traffic at 9:16am.
    Officials from Shanghai Ferry Company said all services across the Huangpu River were halted around 4:30am. Nine ferry lines were affected and an estimated 30,000 to 40,000 commuters were delayed. Services resumed after 8:40am.
    Similar weather conditions were expected this morning, but the rest of the weekend promises sun and a mix of clouds. Daily highs are expected to reach 14 degrees Celsius, and lows will fall to 7 degrees.
    Hooked to a respirator, young Chen was loaded into an ambulance shortly after 11pm Thursday.
    She, her parents and her medical attendants planned to drive to Xiamen in Fujian Province, take a boat to Jinmen in Taiwan and from there board a plane for Taichung.
    But electrical problems in the ambulance delayed their departure for more than 30 minutes. The vehicle finally pulled out of Fudan University's Children's Hospital shortly after midnight, only to be forced to return an hour and a half later after encountering heavy fog on the expressway.
    "The girl was rehospitalized and is in stable condition in the intensive care unit," said the hospital's Luo Weifeng.
    The girl's parents said they won't try to resume the journey until at least today's night. --(12/11)

  • Museum opens to the public
    Students try to manipulate some instruments inside a model of the command cabin of the country¡¯s first homemade submarine at the new Shanghai Shipbuilding Museum, which opened yesterday.
    The city's first shipbuilding museum opened to the public yesterday on Luban Road, enabling visitors to look through the periscope of the country's first homemade submarine, which was launched in 1956.
    With the total exhibition area of 1,800 square meters, the museum is located on the second and third floors of the technical center building of Jiangnan Shipyard Company.
    "The museum not only tells of the city's long history of shipbuilding but provides interactive activities to ensure visitors have fun," Hu Keyi, Jiangnan's technical director, told Shanghai Daily yesterday.
    The museum exhibits more than 600 pictures, models and ship-related artifacts dating back to 1865, when the Jiangnan Shipyard, the country's leading shipbuilding capacity, was founded.
    A major exhibit in the museum is a replica of the country's earliest Armstrong tear-bore steel cannon. It was made by the Jiangnan Shipyard in 1888 and was used as a major weapon to help the country defend against outlying forces.
    Visitors can build a personalized virtual ship within dry docks by using special software. They can also paint the exterior of their ships with different colors.
    Zeng Ming, a manager of the museum, said: "The shipbuilding software can give visitors a deep impression of the whole process of how a ship is built."
    "Normally, visitors can only watch a certain portion of shipbuilding if they come to visit real shipyards," he said.
    Managers at the museum also built a model of the command cabin of the country's first homemade submarine. --(12/9)

  • Exhibition of Impressionist masterpieces to open
    A docent stands next to Edouard Manet¡¯s¡°Le Fifre¡±at the Shanghai Art Museum during a press preview yesterday. As part of the Year of France in China, an exhibition of 51 French Impressionist masterpieces will open tomorrow.--(12/8)

  • Rail line from city to Nanjing now faster
    An inter-city rail line between Shanghai and Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, will be as fast and convenient as the subway in the near future, according to local railway authorities.
    Authorities are going to increase the capacity of the rail line linking the two cities starting tomorrow.
    Two new express trains will be added to the line, the Shanghai Railway Administration said in a statement.
    These two trains will be Bombardier high-speed trains, with an average running speed of 132.7 kilometers per hour, making them the fastest trains operated by the administration.
    The faster trains are expected to cut down the travel time between the two cities by 25 minutes to only two hours and 17 minutes, according to Liu Jianmin, vice director of the administration.
    Once the two new trains are added, five trains will leave Shanghai for Nanjing between 7:55am and 9am - rush hours. The shortest interval will be only seven minutes, which makes it as convenient as a subway ride during this period.
    The line between Shanghai and Nanjing is 303 kilometers long. At present, 79 passenger trains and 53 cargo trains travel the route every day, making it one of the busiest rail lines on the planet.
    The administration says expanding capacity will allow the line to carry nearly 6,000 more people every day, a figure that is almost equal to the capacity 150 high-speed buses can offer.
    Tickets for the two express trains will cost about 10 percent more than tickets for regular trains.
    The charge for a soft seat ticket will increase to 79 yuan (US$9.52), while a hard seat ticket will cost 52 yuan.--(12/7)

  • Insect museum hosts millions of species
    The Shanghai Insects Museum, the largest museum of its kind in East China, was officially opened yesterday with more than 1 million insect specimens on display.
    The Chinese Academy of Sciences has invested more than 1 million yuan (US$120,482) to set up the museum, which is one of 10 popular science museums the municipal government plans to open this year.
    The 2,000-square-meter exhibition hall houses specimens of insects under national protection, dangerous pests and typical insect species, according to Tang Bowei, deputy director of the academy's Plant Research Institute.
    In the museum on Fenglin Road, visitors will learn insects appeared on the earth 350 million years ago, earlier than the dinosaur. A fossil picture indicates the dragonfly's wings measured 80 centimeters long at that time when they fully extended.
    Another precious item on display is a louse found on a 3,800-year-old corpse. The louse, which is being shown to the public for the first time, was the same in ancient times as it is today.
    Visitors can also view beautiful butterflies, including some treasured species.
    The museum is open from 9am to 4:30pm every day. Tickets cost 15 yuan each for adults and 10 yuan for students.--(12/7)

  • Mickey Mouse to star in local carnival
    Mickey Mouse and several other popular Disney characters will star in a carnival in the city during next February's Spring Festival, but organizers still don't know where the event will take place or how long it will run.
    The Disney carnival will be the first of its type to be held in Chinese mainland. The Disney characters will be dressed in shining clothes, reproducing classic scenes from 31 Disney stories, said Chen Min, vice general manager of the Mission Asia Exhibition, the event's organizer.
    The carnival, as a Disney authorized floating amusement program already held in countries like Singapore, Malaysia and Mexico, is designed mainly for places where no Disneyland exists, she said.
    More than 20 million yuan (US$2.4 million) will be invested into the Shanghai event, which will become the largest in its history covering an area of 100,000 square meters.
    "Fairy tales accompanied by lights and music will be the main theme. Parades and fireworks will also be staged," Chen said.
    Some 100 manufacturers of Disney-related products in Asia Pacific region will participate in the event, selling copyright Disney clothes, dolls, souvenirs and art works.
    The carnival is expected to attract 30,000 to 50,000 visitors a day, the organizer said. Ticket prices have not been set yet. --(12/7)

  • Webber's musical to debut in Shanghai
    Cass Jones, technical supervisor of¡°The Phantom Of The Opera,¡±stands next to a prop waiting to be installed at the Shanghai Grand Theater.Andrew Lloyd Webber¡¯s multi-award winning musical will start its first round of performances at the theater on December 18.--(12/6)

  • Chinese trademark exhibition held in city(12/5)
    An exhibition on Chinese trademarks in the past 100 years opened in the city yesterday. The show will last to the end of next month.--(12/5)

  • Bus lanes to clear up traffic
    The city is looking at setting up separate lanes for buses and bicycles in order to clear up traffic congestion.
    Vice Mayor Yang Xiong met with local traffic authorities yesterday to discuss several large-scale programs to improve local traffic that will be carried out all across the city over the next few years.
    The city will devote great energy to isolating bike lanes from cars on major downtown arteries, such as the Inner Ring Road, starting next year.
    A large number of exclusive public bus lanes will be built on major traffic accesses to replace the lanes originally used by non-motor vehicles.
    Meanwhile, suitable minor streets that are located near major roads will cater to bike and moped riders only.
    Officials set a target of setting aside 110 kilometers of streets in downtown for the exclusive use of buses by 2007. The plan covers eight vertical and seven horizontal major downtown roads and the Inner Ring Road, according to traffic authorities.
    Officials say the city will gradually limit the use of non-motor vehicles and push more commuters to travel by public buses and subways by improving the public transport network and service quality.
    Over the next couple of years, the city will set aside 19 street sections for cyclists and mopeds. --(12/4)

  • Port ends its life with a blast
    The Shiliupu Port is demolished in a controlled explosion early yesterday morning. The city's 140-year-old passenger port will give way to a new tourism center.
    In less than a minute, a 140-year-old passenger port terminal was reduced to a pile of smoking rubble yesterday morning.
    Demolition experts rigged dozens of kilograms of explosives to the Shiliupu terminal, and at 1am, a 50-second-long series of blasts toppled two buildings to make way for a new tourism center.
    Authorities say the controlled implosion came off as planned. There was no collateral damage, and despite clouds of dust, the roadway along the Bund was opened 10 minutes later.
    "The mission was completed successfully, although the blast point was only 10 meters away from the flood wall," Tan Ling, a senior engineer for the blast project, said yesterday.
    "We used more than 70 kilograms of explosives and buried them in 3,000-plus pre-dug holes."
    The structures taken down were the 10-story Shenke Restaurant and a 19-meter-high passenger waiting hall near the Bund. Both were built in 1982.
    The port was a key transport facility through the 1980s when it handled nearly 40,000 passengers a day. But with air and train travel gaining popularity in recent years, the port's daily volume fell to less than 1,000.
    According to the city's urban planning authority, a new tourism center with berths for cruise ships and yachts will be built at the site over the next three years.
    "The new tourism center will provide a place for many private pleasure boats," said Chen Youhua, a senior engineer at the Shanghai Urban Planning Administrative Bureau.
    It is not clear whether the new facility will carry the Shiliupu name, however. "Hopefully, the name will remain, since it is symbolic of the city's past," he said.
    The Shiliupu Port's history dates back to the end of Qing Dynasty (1644-1911), when it served as an important shipping connection to the outside world.
    All the city's regular passenger ships have been moved to the Wusong Passenger Transport Center in Baoshan District, which also handles ships heading to Chongming, Changxing and Hengsha islands.
    City officials are also working on plans to build a new passenger terminal at the Wusong port. That facility serves as a shipping hub and as a venue for sightseeing trips.
    Planning bureau officials pointed out the Wusong port is connected to dozens of bus lines and will be linked with two of the city's metro lines in the near future.--(12/3)

  • Han welcomes renowned Peking Opera artists
    The Fourth China Peking Opera Art Festival offers audiences 54 performances by the country's most renowned Peking Opera performers and exhibitions displaying the history of one of China's cultural icons. The festival opened last night in Shanghai.
    The Fourth Chinese Peking Opera Art Festival, sponsored by the State Ministry of Culture and the municipal government, was unveiled at the Shanghai Grand Stage on the night of December 1. Han warmly welcomed the renowned Peking Opera artists and wished the festival great success.
    Yang Xiaodu, vice Shanghai mayor and deputy chairman of the festival organizing committee, ran the opening ceremony. Municipal leaders, Gong Xueping, Yin Yicui, Zhou Muyao, Xie Lijuan, as well as leaders and famous artists from other provinces and regions, were present at the pageant.
    Led by Shang Changrong, the famous Peking Opera performer, the opening performance fully displayed the characteristics and flourish of Peking Opera, one of China's cultural icons.
    The first appearance of this festival in the city attracted 32 troupes from all over the country, including one from Taiwan.
    Besides the 54 performances, there will be several exhibitions on the history of Peking Opera.
    One of the main aims of this festival is to popularize of this essence of Chinese culture among young people.--(12/2)

  • City unveils measures to prevent spread of AIDS/HIV
    Shanghai's public health department has established a long-term mechanism to prevent the spread of AIDS/HIV.
    The 17th World AIDS Day is today.
    There are now 1,124 AIDS/HIV cases in Shanghai, with 213 reported this year.
    To reduce the spread through unsafe sex, a main transmission method of the killing disease, authorities are encouraging locals to use condoms.
    "Condoms have proven a very effective way of preventing the spread of AIDS/HIV in some foreign countries," said Professor Pan Xiaozhang with Huashan Hospital, affiliated with Fudan University. The professor is a member of China's Health Ministry AIDS expert group.
    As a result of the local effort, use of condoms among Shanghainese has increased from 9.11 percent of the total population in 1995 to 19.5 percent, above the national average.
    To secure a safe supply of blood for medical use, another main transmission method for AIDS/HIV, Shanghai has improved the AIDS/HIV detection technologies and skills and encouraged more volunteers to give blood.
    The city has established 20 work teams involving 120 people to monitor the health of those at high risk of infection, such as drug users and sex workers.
    Promotion of AIDS knowledge is another focus of Shanghai's AIDS workers. Last year more than 1 million people participated community activities to spread the medical information to the public. --(12/1)



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