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Rethinking China’s Rise under the Governance of the CPC



“Rethinking China’s Rise under the Governance of the CPC: Achievements, Initiatives and Prospects Conference” International Conference was held on July 2, 2021. The conference was organized by ‘China-Eurasia’ Council for Political and Strategic Research in partnership with the Institute of Oriental Studies, National Academy of Sciences. It was supported by the embassy of China in Armenia.

The President of Armenia Dr. Armen Sarkissian has stated that Armenia gives great importance to the further development of relations with China in different spheres. Both sides created trustful and respectful relations after establishing diplomatic relations, which is good fundament for strengthening cooperation.

The Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the PRC to Armenia Mr. Fan Yong noted; “I am very pleased to attend the “Rethinking China’s Rise under the Governance of the CPC: Achievements, Initiatives and Prospects” dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the founding of the CPC, which is by ‘China-Eurasia’ Council for Political and Strategic Research in Institute of Oriental Studies, NAS.” He added that the people’s stand is the fundamental political stand of the Communist Party of China, and seeking happiness for the people is the original mission of the Communist Party of China. From the beginning of the founding of the party, the Communist Party of China has always put people in the highest position. After arduous and struggle, the lives of the Chinese people have undergone earth-shaking changes.

In turn, Ms. Zheng Wei, General Secretary of The Good-Neighborliness, Friendship and Cooperation Commission of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, noted that the Chinese Communist Party is concerned about the future and destiny of humanity and works hand in hand with all progressive forces in the world. China has always been and will remain the builder of world peace.

Dr. Mher Sahakyan, Director of “China-Eurasia” Council for Political and Strategic Research and the main initiator of the “Rethinking China’s Rise under the Governance of the CPC: Achievements, Initiatives and Prospects”, mentioned that during the conference, which was organized by the “China-Eurasia” Council for Political and Strategic Research at the Institute of Oriental Studies, National Academy of Sciences, Chinese external and internal relations would be discussed. He added that it should be noted that due to skillful management, the Chinese leadership has managed to make the country one of the leaders in the field of science, technology and industry in just a few decades.

Dr. Robert Ghazaryan, Director of the Institute of Oriental Studies of the National Academy of Sciences of RA, noted that one of the most important pages in the modern history of China is the path of the Chinese Communist Party. To get a clear idea of ​​the political, economic, scientific and educational processes taking place in China, it is necessary to conduct a retrospective analysis of the Party’s past. With its unique, well-developed political line, the Party fulfills its great mission in the modern history of Chinese civilization, ensuring its sustainable development at the present stage.

Following scholars delivered speeches during the conference: Dr. Zheng Yuntian (Director of the World Socialism Institute, Renmin University of China, PRC), Mr. Ebrahim Hashem (Strategist, Consultant and Scholar, UAE), Dr. Bin Ma (Associate Professor at the Center for Russian and Central Asian Studies, Institute of International Studies, Fudan University, PRC), Dr. Sanja Arezina, (Counselor with the Government of the Republic of Serbia, Research Associate-Assistant Professor at Belgrade University, Serbia), Dr. Anahit Parzyan (“China-Eurasia” Council for political and Strategic Research, Armenia), Ms. Raisa Epikhina (Lecturer and Researcher, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Russia), Dr. Konstantin Kurylev (Deputy Head of the Department of Theory and History of International Relations, RUDN University, Russia), Dr. Ruben Elamiryan (Chair of the Department of World Politics and International Relations, Russian-Armenian University, Armenia), Dr. Aram Abajyan (Researcher, National Academy of Sciences, Armenia), Dr. Vakhtang Charaia (Head of TSU Center for Analysis and Forecasting; Affiliated prof. at Business and Technology University, Georgia), Dr. Mher Sahakyan (Director, China-Eurasia Council for political and Strategic Research, Armenia; Asia Global Institute, University of Hong Kong, PRC), Dr. Artur Israyelyan (Vice-rector for International Cooperation and Public Relations of Yerevan State University), Dr. Varuzhan Geghamyan (Assistant professor, Faculty of Oriental Studies, Yerevan State University, Armenia).

During the conference an exhibition dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the founding of the CPC was also organized by the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Armenia.

The conference hosted distinguished guests such as the acting minister of the Ministry of Labor and Social affairs of Armenia, Mr. Narek Mkrtchyan, President of National Academy of Sciences Dr. Ashot Saghyan, President of the AGBU-Armenia Mr. Vasken Yacoubian, Chargé D’affaires of the UAE Embassy in Armenia Ms. Ahlam Al Salami, Councilor of the PRC Embassy in Armenia Mr. Zhou Hongyou, Premier secretaire of Embassy of France in Armenia Mr. Eric Debenath, Dean of the Faculty of Oriental Studies Dr. Ruben Melkonyan, Head of the Department of Asian and Pacific Region of MFA Mr. Mnatsakan Safaryan, Director of Yerevan School of Political Studies Mr. Armen Zakaryan, Head of the Department of Regional Studies, Ministry of Defense Dr. Davit Manasyan and other diplomats and scholars.

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Economic Recovery Plans Essential to Delivering Inclusive and Green Growth



EU member states must ensure careful and efficient implementation of economic recovery plans that support inclusion and growth to bounce back from the worst impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, says a new World Bank report.  

The World Bank’s latest EU Regular Economic Report – entitledInclusive Growth at a Crossroads – finds that the unprecedented and exceptional policy response of governments and EU institutions has cushioned the worst impacts on employment and income. However, the pandemic has exposed and exacerbated deep-seated inequalities, halting progress in multiple areas including gender equality and income convergence across the EU member states. A further three to five million people in the EU today are estimated to be ‘at risk of poverty,’ based on national thresholds benchmarked before the crisis.

The report highlights that effective recovery programs can reinforce progress on the green and digital transitions underway across the region. With the crisis continuing to unfold, government support schemes and the rollout of vaccines in a timely manner will remain essential to bolstering the resilience of firms, workers, and households. Given the longevity of the crisis and the impact on the most vulnerable, many governments have opted to extend the duration of support throughout 2021.

“A green, digital and inclusive transition is possible if economic policy is increasingly geared towards reforms and investment in education, health and sustainable infrastructure,” said Gallina A. Vincelette, Director for the European Union Countries at the World Bank.

With an output contraction of 6.1 percent in 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the sharpest peacetime recession in the EU. Governments will need to ensure targeted and active labor market policies are in place to support an inclusive recovery. The report highlights that special attention should be given to already vulnerable workers such as youth, the self-employed, and those in informal employment. These groups are more likely to face employment adjustments during the crisis and may face longer spells of unemployment or periods outside the labor force.

Women have been disproportionately impacted by work disruptions during the pandemic, particularly in the sectors facing the worst effects of the crisis. This was also highlighted in the 2020 Regular Economic Report produced by the World Bank, which found that at least one in five women will face difficulty returning to work compared to one in ten men. It has been harder for women to resume work due to the sectors and occupations that they are working in and because of the additional care burdens that have fallen disproportionately on their shoulders – a manifestation of increasing inequities in home environments.

“As recovery takes hold, it will be important for carefully targeted and coordinated policy support to continue to mitigate the impact of the crisis, with measures increasingly targeted towards vulnerable households and viable firms. Policy makers will also need to strike a balance between helping those that need it most, while enhancing the productivity of the economy and keeping debt at manageable levels,” added Vincelette.

World Bank’s Regional Action in Europe and Central Asia

To date, the World Bank has committed more than $1.7 billion to help emerging economies in Europe and Central Asia mitigate the impacts of COVID-19. Since April 2020, around $866 million has been approved through new emergency response (MPA/Vaccines) projects. In addition, up to $904 million is being reallocated, used, or made available from existing projects and lending, including additional financing, to help countries with their COVID-19 response.

The World Bank’s Global Economic Prospects suggests that growth will be strong but uneven in 2021. The global economy is set to expand 5.6 percent—its strongest post-recession pace in 80 years. The recovery largely reflects sharp rebounds in some major economies.

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ADB Calls for Just, Equitable Transition Toward Net Zero in Asia and Pacific



Asian Development Bank (ADB) President Masatsugu Asakawa today called for countries in Asia and the Pacific to take bold action to address climate change while ensuring fair and equitable economic growth amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic.

“The task of addressing climate change is not only urgent, but also inextricably linked to an inclusive and lasting recovery from the pandemic,” said Mr. Asakawa at the Indonesian Ministry of Finance–ADB 2021 International Climate Conference. “With shared commitment and international cooperation, we can make the transition to net zero and achieve climate resilience, so that our region emerges stronger than before.”

The one-day virtual conference attracted about 800 people from the public and private sectors, development partners, think tanks, and academia to discuss international good practices that can help ADB developing member countries transition to low-carbon, resilient economies and pursue a green, resilient, and inclusive recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The event highlighted Indonesia’s commitment to meeting its nationally determined contributions (NDCs) under the Paris Agreement, as well as steps it has taken to support the development of a low-carbon, resilient economy.

“Indonesia has mainstreamed climate change into our National Medium-Term Development Plan 2020–2024 and established a national Action Plan, both on mitigation and adaptation,” said Indonesian Vice Minister of Finance Suahasil Nazara. “In the near future, we will use this recovery phase post-COVID-19 pandemic to pursue our climate and sustainability agenda.” Indonesia will chair the G20 in 2022.

Asia and the Pacific is responsible for more than half of global greenhouse gas emissions. Recent analysis predicts that global energy-related CO2 emissions will grow by nearly 5% in 2021, as demand for coal, oil, and gas rebounds. About 80% of the growth in coal demand is expected to come from Asia.

The Paris Agreement aims to keep the rise in global temperatures to well below 2°C, preferably to 1.5°C, compared to pre-industrial levels. ADB’s sovereign operations will be fully aligned with the goals of the Paris Agreement by 1 July 2023 and its nonsovereign operations by 1 July 2025. ADB will scale up investments in adaptation and resilience to at least $9 billion from 2019 to 2024 to support Asia and the Pacific’s recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The measures will contribute to ADB’s commitment to deliver $80 billion in climate finance between 2019 and 2030.

Mr. Asakawa said ADB will support Indonesia’s transition toward a low-carbon, resilient economy and help the country meet its NDC targets. Strengthening resilience is one of the three focus areas in ADB’s country partnership strategy for Indonesia. That includes climate change mitigation and adaptation and green recovery, as well as disaster risk management and finance.

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10 new cities chosen for World Economic Forum circular economy initiative



The World Economic Forum’s Scale360° initiative announced today the 10 city-based hubs joining its Circular Shapers programme.

Scale360° leverages innovation hubs in cities, countries and regions worldwide, bringing together leaders in science, policy and business to trigger circular change. Circular Shapers engage with local public, private, and civil society stakeholders to design, organise, and deliver circular economy projects tailored to local needs.

Circular Shapers are competitively selected from the Global Shapers Community, a network of committed and energized young volunteers in 448 city-based hubs around the world. These changemakers have the energy, skill, networks and commitment needed to transform their cities into centres of circular economy innovation.

The latest Circular Shaper cohort hails from four continents and includes: Ankara, Asuncion, Auckland, Beijing, Bucharest, Lahore, Manama, Milan, Morelia, and Thimphu.

The cities selected to the latest cohort will apply Scale360°’s tested methodology – the Scale360° Circular Innovation Playbook – to fast-track Fourth Industrial Revolution impact to keep more goods in use. Their initiatives will explore ways to apply circular design principles, improve reuse, and to eliminate waste, all while strengthening economies and boosting job growth.

These join the successful pilot cohort which included four Global Shapers hubs in Mexico City, Brussels, Turin and Bangkok and ran from February to July 2021.

In just a few months, those pilot cities built critical relationships with leaders in government, the private sector, and NGOs, making critical early steps towards driving circular innovation. Specific achievements include:

Bangkok: Mobilized a range of partners from researchers to advertising agencies to popularize solutions to air pollution and plastics. Solutions included: assembling a catalogue to help businesses choose alternatives to single-use plastics in food packaging and a social media campaign to build momentum for clean air regulation.

Brussels: Partnered with local NGOs on its “Eat, Play, Live Circular” initiatives to create bottom-up solutions for more circular lifestyles. Initiatives included an ‘Idea-thon’ for food and packaging waste solutions and a series of experiments with the public to make one Brussels public space more circular.

Mexico City: Trained public, private and government stakeholders in Scale360° methodology to bridge circular economy knowledge gaps and drive the circular transition through focusing early conversations. 

Turin: Built critical relationships with stakeholders from 14 organizations including regional policy makers, members of the private sector, academia, and existing networks to help foster and support much-needed discussions and collaboration on circular needs and priorities.

The Circular Shapers tap into World Economic Forum networks of experts and leaders in civil society, government, industry global organizations, including the Platform for Accelerating Circular Economy (PACE). 

“It’s powerful to see how Scale360° methodology has spread so rapidly and empowered Global Shapers to become leaders driving circular innovation in their cities. Now in 14 hubs around the world, Circular Shapers is one of the largest cross-hub collaborations in the Global Shapers Community,” said Katie Hoeflinger, Specialist, Climate and Environment, Global Shapers Community.

The United Arab Emirates, a key supporter of Scale360°’s approaches, agrees that these new hubs will play an important role in building circular innovation. “The UAE supports Scale360° in driving the transition to circular economy locally and globally,” said his Excellency Dr. Abdullah Belhaif Al Nuaimi, Minister of Climate Change and Environment. “This program will go a long way in fostering innovations that have the potential to fast-track the implementation of the circular economy principles around the world.”

These efforts can also fuel a just transition, noted Head of Global Opportunities for Sustainable Development Goals (GO4SDGs), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Adriana Zacarias Farah. “Jobs and skills are central to getting the political buy-in for the transformation from linear to circular. UNEP through the initiative Global Opportunities for SDGS (GO4SDGS) is happy to collaborate with the Forum and Scale360° on circular cities and the just transition narrative.”

Building circular capabilities can help meet critical climate goals. “Scaling up circular business models and solutions is vital for environmental reasons and needs to happen fast,” said Carsten Gerhardt, Partner at Kearney and Founder at Circular Valley (leading partners of Scale360° Germany).

With new Circular Shaper hubs in place, momentum for circular innovation can build further. Added Scale360°’s Global Lead, Helen Burdett: “This latest cohort is another example of local action for global impact on the circular economy transition.”

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