On March 5, at the opening meeting of the National People's Congress, China's top legislature's annual session, Premier Li Keqiang announced that China will accelerate research and development (R&D) in new and emerging industries, such as artificial intelligence (AI). It is the first time that China's highest national meeting has included AI in the Government Work Report. The report's singling out of AI indicates Beijing's prioritization of the industry in its economic agenda, and therefore its determination to support its growth.
In this June 1, 2016 photo, a worker adjusts a welding robot at a subsidiary of China Offshore Oil Engineering Co. Ltd. in Qingdao in eastern China's Shandong province. An official survey of Chinese manufacturing release Friday, July 1, 2016, shows that activity was flat in June, signaling further weakness in the world's No. 2 economy as it undergoes a prolonged slowdown.
Oscar Lai, a member of pro-democracy group Demosisto, throws a newspaper reporting Hong Kong bookseller Lam Wing-Kee into the Chinese central government's liaison office in Hong Kong, Friday, June 17, 2016. Lam, one of the five Hong Kong booksellers whose disappearances sparked international concern, said Thursday he spent months confined in a room under constant surveillance by mainland Chinese authorities, who interrogated him about his publishing company's authors and customers.
Lam Wing-Kee's revelations to the media Thursday -- made in defiance of Chinese authorities -- were the first detailed account of what happened to the men, who worked for a publisher of gossipy books on China's Communist leadership that are banned on the mainland. His testimony is sure to further fuel fears Beijing is tightening its grip on Hong Kong and undermining its considerable autonomy.