Permalink 04:44:51 pm, by dacare, 307 words, 132 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China

China launches cyber security talent training nationwide

Authorities from Wuhan, capital of Central China's Hubei Province on Monday pledged to increase the number of scholarships to attract students pursuing cyber security, and run special recruitment for "maverick geniuses," which constitutes a part of nationwide efforts to train cyber security talent.

Li Shuyong, Wuhan government publicity department head, told the Cybersecurity Technology Summit during China Cybersecurity Week that the city government will cooperate with companies to cultivate the world's top cyber security talent.

Li said the local government will double the number of scholarships for cyber security majors and recruit top cyber security graduates in Chinese and overseas schools as well as from competitors at cyber security contests. She added it will also open a class for minors and run special recruitment for "maverick geniuses."

She also said the city government will establish an innovative evaluation system. Instead of taking exams, cyber security majors will be evaluated based on their performance and given priority to practical and entrepreneurship training.

The Wuhan government will also offer twice the salary and research funds to the best cyber security experts than those from other fields. They will also receive 2 million yuan ($299,823) in subsidies and a high of 100 million yuan in funding if they have typical technologies and can create a significant impact on the economy. China needs at least 500,000 cyber security talents, but only about 8,000 such majors graduate each year, said an education official at the 4th China Internet Security Conference in August.

In January, a training center for cyber security and communication talent was established in Sichuan Province, aiming to provide training for students and faculty in Sichuan and Hong Kong.

In February, China launched its first special fund for cyber security with an initial capital of 300 million yuan. The fund will be used to provide financial assistance to experts and teachers who specialize in cyber security.

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Permalink 01:24:29 pm, by dacare, 418 words, 142 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China

Demand rises for graduates

Domestic service majors from the first university in China to launch the course are so popular that many are approached by potential employers even before they graduate.

Jilin Agricultural University in Changchun, the capital of the northeastern province, which established the major in 2003, recruits about 60 students a year.

The employment rate for domestic service graduates has reached almost 90 percent and many earn decent money while still students, according to Li Lei, director of the university's domestic service laboratory. "As interns in the last semester before graduation, many have been able to earn 3,000 to 5,000 yuan ($450 to $750) a month."

According to a report published by MyCOS, an educational data and consulting company, the average monthly salary for graduates of the class of 2014 reached 3,487 yuan just six months after graduation.

"There is still a shortage of talent in the booming industry, so some companies come to our university to recruit," Li said.

However, only about 40 percent of graduates choose to work in the domestic service industry. That's because many of the original students were transferred to the major when they failed to gain entry to their preferred major, so they have no interest in the sector. However, the proportion has declined and the major is now the first choice of 50 to 60 percent of the students, Li said.

The university's domestic service department employs 13 teachers who are experts in a range of fields, including sociology, medical science, nutrition and management science. Half of them hold doctorates. About 60 percent of courses on the major are practical subjects, including designing and making clothes.

The university receives many visitors from other universities, and at least one university in Guangdong province and another in Hunan province have also established the major, Li said.

Li Juanhui, a junior student, said she chose the course because it is "a distinctive major--new, but promising" and there is "a shortage of talent in the industry".

She said many people still make "incorrect assumptions", and "it will require the efforts of several generations of teachers and students to overcome prejudice against the major".

The 21-year-old said she may begin preparing for exams for postgraduate study or to become a civil servant in the second semester.

Fellow student Dong Jian said he has come to enjoy the major, even though it was not his first choice.

However, the 21-year-old said he is confident about the sector's future so he may undertake postgraduate study or look for work at a primary or junior school as a teacher of courses related to family life.

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Permalink 11:06:31 am, by dacare, 158 words, 119 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China

China's express delivery sector sees strong growth

China's express delivery sector has grown steadily in the first eight months despite a slowing economy, according to the State Post Bureau.

Revenue for Chinese express delivery businesses hit 234.36 billion yuan (about 35.5 billion U.S. dollars) in the first eight months of 2016, up 43 percent year on year, said the bureau in an online statement.

A total of 18.27 billion deliveries were made during the same period, up 55 percent year on year, according to the bureau.

Despite a slowing economy, express delivery services have grown steadily as online shopping gains popularity in China.

China aims to nearly quadruple revenues of its express delivery market by 2020 in a move to boost consumption and services, as the economy slows with softening trade and investment.

The express delivery industry will have a target annual revenue of 800 billion yuan by 2020, according to a policy document released by the State Council last October.

The amount is nearly four times the 2014 revenue, which reached 204 billion yuan.

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Permalink 11:51:37 am, by dacare, 298 words, 189 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China

Baidu sets up venture capital firm for innovation in artificial intelligence

Baidu Inc announced Tuesday that it will set up an independent venture capital firm to focus on investing in early-stage high-tech innovative projects related to artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality and virtual reality, according to media reports.

The company, named Baidu -Venture, has received the first round of funding of $200 million, -chinanews.com reported on Tuesday.

Baidu CEO Li Yanhong will serve as chairman of the firm and of its investment committee. He will participate in the review and assessment of the projects, said the report.

Baidu Venture will operate independently from Baidu, with innovative assessment mechanisms to accelerate the decision-making process and boost the company's investment efficiency, domestic news portal -leiphone.com reported on Tuesday.

Leading AI scientists, including those in Baidu, will be invited to serve as consultants, leiphone.com noted.

It is another milestone in Baidu's strategic move into the AI sector, which Li said "will be a core tool for remarkable changes in daily life, just as electricity was over a century ago."

He spoke at the Baidu World -Conference on September 1, the Xinhua News Agency reported the same day.

Allen Zhu, managing director of GSR Venture, said the AI sector "has already attracted investment from the capital market."

Zhu predicted that it will be "the next promising investment opportunity after the Internet."

In 2015, China's market for AI amounted to 1.2 billion yuan ($179.65 million), according to consultancy iResearch Consulting Group.

The sector is expected to reach 9.1 billion yuan in 2020.

Baidu is one of the pioneers in the field. Earlier this month, the company unveiled its AI system called Baidu Brain, which is able to recognize and process speech, images and words, as well as build user profiles, said Xinhua's report.

It launched the Institute of Deep Learning in 2013 to develop AI technology, chinanews.com noted.

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Permalink 11:59:26 am, by dacare, 537 words, 117 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China

Firms need to step up efforts on standardization, says official

Chinese enterprises should make more efforts to participate in international cooperation in standards to promote their overseas development, said Zhang Xiaogang, president of International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

"Chinese enterprises should pay more importance to international standards and increase awareness in participating in international standardization affairs," Zhang said in an exclusive interview with China Daily ahead of the 39th ISO General Assembly. "They should increase their familiarity of the rules on the formulation of international standards."

The 39th ISO General Assembly will open on Monday in Beijing, and delegates from all of the ISO's 163 members are expected to attend the meeting. This is the second time that the general assembly of the world's biggest organization for standardization has been held in China.

"The meeting will expedite China's participation in international standardization affairs, and play a role beyond measure in facilitating integration between China and the international community in economy, trade, science and technology, and other fields," Zhang said. "It will also greatly contribute to China's economic upgrade."

The technical standards, such as those for measurements and units, and industrial standards issued by the ISO have been widely adopted and have had far-reaching influence in global technological and economic development, Zhang said.

Participation into international standardization can help enterprises to master international rules, familiarize themselves with the latest technological development, increase their competitiveness and brings them economic benefits, he said.

China has made remarkable progress in international standardization in recent years. China led in the formulation of 182 international standards between 2001 and 2015. The figure was 13 between 1947, when the ISO was founded, and 2000, Zhang said.

Despite this progress, China still lags far behind developed countries in international standardization. Around 95 percent of international standards are made led by Western countries, he said. Only 0.7 percent of international standards were led by China, and these standards are mainly limited to industries in which China enjoys traditional advantages, such as fireworks, he said.

To reduce the gap, China needs intensified participation in the formulation of international standards, and the government should consider national plans for internationalization of Chinese standards, he said.

Meanwhile, the government should foster an incentive mechanism to encourage enterprises to cooperate with standardization research institutes to promote advantageous technical standards held by enterprises to become international standards, Zhang said.

In addition, enterprises should make more efforts to cultivate employees who excel in foreign languages, master certain fields of technology, and are familiar with the rules of international standards formulation, to improve international cooperation and exchanges in standardization, he said.

Meng Yongye, deputy director of the Center for International Language Service and Management, at the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing, said with more Chinese enterprises investing overseas, more Chinese technologies will also go overseas, and they should aim to internationalize their standards if they want to become world-class enterprises.

Less than 5 percent of Chinese standards have English versions, far below countries such as Japan and Germany.

China will take a series of measures to encourage internationalization of Chinese standards, such as encouraging enterprises and experts in the formulation and revision of international standards, and carry out mutual recognition of standards with China's major trade partners, Tian Shihong, director of China's Standardization Administration, said at a news conference in August.

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Permalink 10:59:41 am, by dacare, 478 words, 129 views   English (US)
Categories: News of China, Banking & Financial Services

Tens of Thousands of Jobs Go as China’s Biggest Banks Cut Costs

China’s four biggest banks reported that staff numbers fell by the most in at least six years in the first half, highlighting the possibility that employment has peaked at the firms that are the world’s biggest providers of banking jobs.
A decline of 1.5 percent from the end of last year left 1.62 million workers at Agricultural Bank of China Ltd., Industrial & Commercial Bank of China Ltd., China Construction Bank Corp. and Bank of China Ltd., earnings filings showed. Agricultural Bank, the No. 1 bank employer, saw its number of employees slip below half a million.
While a fall in the first half is not unusual, the 25,000-job decline is the biggest since at least 2010 and analysts at firms including BOC International Holdings Ltd. and DBS Vickers Hong Kong Ltd. say changes to how banking is done will limit prospects for increases.
“Chinese banks went through years of expansion, adding physical outlets that helped to push their staff numbers to a peak,” said Polar Zhang, a Beijing-based bank analyst at BOC International. He expects the workforce to “dwindle” on technological advances and cost cutting.

Chinese lenders take four of the top five slots for employment by listed banks around the world, ahead of the likes of Wells Fargo & Co., HSBC Holdings Plc, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc., data compiled by Bloomberg show. Russia’s Sberbank PJSC is in the top five.
Economic Slowdown
Lenders from Citigroup to Deutsche Bank AG have cut staff and costs in revamps since the global financial crisis.
While Chinese banks have avoided the multi-billion dollar fines for compliance breaches that have weighed on their international counterparts, they’re under pressure from an economic slowdown and a rising quantity of bad loans. Margins are falling as the government deregulates the industry and online and mobile players like Zhejiang Ant Small & Micro Financial Services Group -- also known as Ant Financial -- and Tencent Holdings Ltd. eat into their businesses.
Chinese lenders have generally reduced numbers by not replacing staff who leave, according to Shujin Chen, a Hong Kong-based analyst at DBS Vickers Hong Kong. Workers are departing in search of better pay, she said, adding that banks would need less staff as artificial intelligence and online and mobile transactions played a bigger role and lenders developed robots that would interact with customers.
Besides a reduced number of workers, the first-half data also pointed to pressure on pay. The big four banks’ combined staff compensation costs -- including salaries, bonuses, allowances and post-employment benefits -- fell 2.6 percent from a year earlier. At the mid-sized China Minsheng Banking Corp., the decline was 22 percent.

Flat revenue and rising pressure on asset quality means “banks have been pushing even harder in cost optimization,” Wei Hou, a Hong Kong-based analyst at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co., wrote in a note.
— With assistance by Jun Luo

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