China Plans More Than 20 Space Launches in 2016

China has announced its busy 2016 launch manifest, with more than 20 missions scheduled for this year. The country that conducted 19 successful space flights in 2015, intends to launch its Tiangong 2 space laboratory and a manned spacecraft Shenzhou 11, among other military and commercial orbital missions.

The first Chinese launch this year will be carried out on Jan. 15, when a Long March 3B rocket will blastoff the Belintersat 1 communications satellite for Belarus. Liftoff will take place from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, located in Sichuan Province. The spacecraft was built by the China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation and is China’s first communications satellite exported to Europe.

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China plans Maritime Silk Road with ASEAN nations: Report

China is the 10-member ASEAN group’s largest trading partner, with the two-way trade exceeding $400 billion last year

China proposes to build a Maritime Silk Road with Southeast Asia countries where it is locked in a vexed dispute over the South China Sea to boost its foreign trade, state media here reported today.

The Maritime Silk Road (MSR) formed the basis the plans to enhance trade between China and ASEAN countries during the current visit of Chinese President Xi Jinping to Indonesia and Malaysia where he stated the MSR would help turn the “Golden Decade” between China and the region into “Diamond Decade”. Continue reading