Hangzhou sets stage for excellence


Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center, the main site of the 2022 Asian Games, features a stunning butterfly-shaped venue which incorporates a natatorium and a gymnasium to host swimming, diving and basketball. Pictured behind the giant silver-white structure is the center’s main stadium – aka the ‘Big Lotus’ – which will host the opening and closing ceremonies, and track and field events. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Asian Games venues completed as state-of-the-art facilities promise to deliver exceptional event

With less than six months to go, preparations for the Hangzhou Asian Games are in full swing.

Organizers delivered the latest update on Thursday, confirming that all competition venues have been completed.

The 56 venues for the 19th Asian Games Hangzhou 2022 (Sept 10-25) and the fourth Asian Para Games (Oct 9-15) have been finished on schedule, according to the organizing committee. They comprise 12 new, 26 renovated, nine rebuilt and nine temporary venues.

In addition, a total of 31 training venues, one Asian Games village and four Asian Games sub-villages will be ready in the coming months to provide accommodation, catering and medical services for athletes and other participants.

Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province, will host the largest number of events during the Games.

The city’s Huanglong Sports Center, which comprises a main stadium, a gymnasium and a natatorium, will host soccer, gymnastics and water polo at the Asian Games, and track and field events for the Asian Para Games.u;ppp

Huanglong Stadium’s soccer pitch is composed of both natural and artificial grass, making it more durable than a standard surface and helping it recover faster amid a busy schedule of matches during the Games.

According to Song Haiqiang, a senior engineer at Huanglong Sports Center, the stadium features a world-class plastic track which boasts superior performance and is ecologically friendly.

“The stadium can accommodate up to 60,000 people. All the seats have also been upgraded with more striking colors, such as purple, orange and blue,” said Song.


The main stadium at Huanglong Sports Center will host soccer at the Asian Games. [Photo provided to China Daily]

“Additionally, there will be two 360-degree circular screen strips, at 590 meters and 490 meters in length respectively inside the stadium. These will offer an enjoyable and unique viewing experience for the audience.”

Two 85-meter-high towers stand at either side of the stadium with two large screens at their centers to display scores and action replays during the Games in real time.

On the east and west sides of each tower, laser projections can present live images of events in real time, and can be seen by the naked eye up to 3 kilometers away.

As the venue which will host the most competitions during the Hangzhou Asian Games, the Huanglong center will stage six test competitions-five of which are national level-from April through June to ensure preparations are conducted as thoroughly as possible.

The Hangzhou Olympic Sports Center is arguably the most visually stunning of all the Games’ new venues. A main stadium, dubbed the “Giant Lotus” thanks to its lotus flower design, will host the opening and closing ceremonies, and the track and field competitions.

The center’s most eye-catching venue is a butterfly-shaped building that combines a natatorium and a gymnasium, and features a silver-white metal roof.

The design is inspired by the Chinese folktale of Liang Shanbo and Zhu Yingtai-sometimes referred to as “The Butterfly Lovers” and dubbed the “oriental Romeo and Juliet”.

Meng Fangli, a staff member of the Asian Games’ operating company, said that the main gymnasium spans a total construction area of 76,107 square meters.

“There are 18,000 seats, of which 15,000 are fixed. Forty seats for persons with disability have been added, and each barrier-free seat is equipped with a corresponding chair for a guide or carer,” said Meng.


Fuyang Yinhu Sports Center in Hangzhou’s Fuyang district will host shooting, archery and modern pentathlon. [Photo provided to China Daily]

The natatorium, which features a swimming pool and a diving pool, has a construction area of 53,959 square meters and can seat about 6,000 spectators.

Set above the main gymnasium and natatorium are 210 light tubes, which diffuse natural light indoors, according to Guo Jingyang, a PR officer for the Asian Games operating company.

After the Games, the main gymnasium will host large-scale events and performing arts activities, while the swimming area will be open to the public and as a training venue for athletes.

Meanwhile, the Fuyang Yinhu Sports Center in Fuyang district will host shooting, archery and modern pentathlon during the Games.

The design of the building, which comprises 34,000 louvers (angled slats), is inspired by the outline of the famous Chinese landscape painting Fuchun Mountain Residence.

The construction of Fuyang Yinhu Sports Center takes full advantage of being surrounded by mountains and water to create a Chinese garden-style effect.

Wu Xiao, the project leader of the construction department, said more than 34,000 rotating louvers are installed on the curtain walls to form a picture of Fuchun Mountains.

With a special design behind each louver, the picture of Fuchun Mountains presents an artistic impression of the Fuchun landscape with a 200-meter-long light belt on the ceiling of the museum when night falls.

After the Games, the Hangzhou Shooting Management Center will take over the main venue to host shooting sports training, competitions and exhibitions.

Fuyang district will host competitions such as rowing, canoeing, kayaking, shooting, archery, and modern pentathlon. A total of 77 gold medals will be up for grabs in Fuyang during the Games.

Fang Xiaoying in Hangzhou contributed to this story

China Issues Draft Law on Foreign Teachers – Part Time Allowed?!

With the agreement of their employer, foreign teachers will be allowed to work part-time in other educational institutions reasonably!

On July 21, 2020, in order to strengthen the management of foreign teachers, the Ministry of Education, together with the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Ministry of Public Security and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, formulated the Measures for the Appointment and Management of Foreign Teachers (Draft for Comments) to solicit public opinions, and below is the major content.

Basic Requirements for Foreign Teachers

Foreign personnel should meet the following requirements before they can be employed as foreign teachers by various educational institutions at all levels.

  • Bachelor degree or above;
  • As a subject professional (including foreign language literature) teachers must have more than two years of teaching or working experience in related disciplines;
  • As a teacher of foreign language training, he/she must have been trained in language teaching, and obtain the language training qualification, and generally be engaged in his/her mother tongue teaching;
  • And for those who teach relevant courses in Chinese, their mandarin level should reach class 3B or above, or pass the HSK proficiency test to obtain the corresponding grade certificate.

Who Will Be Banned from Employment

Under any of the following circumstances, foreign personnel shall not be employed by any educational institution.

  • Words and deeds that damage China’s national sovereignty, security, honor and social and public interests;
  • Being investigated for criminal responsibility;
  • Hindering the implementation of the educational policy;
  • Drug addicts;
  • Having committed acts of sexual assault or maltreatment of minors;
  • Illegally engaging in religious education or missionary work;
  • Engaged in cult activities;
  • Sexual harassment of students or other serious violations of teachers’ professional ethics;
  • Providing false certification information in the process of applying for teaching in China;
  • Having three records of breach of trust.

Part-Time Job Allowed for Full-Time Teachers

During a period of employment, foreign teachers can only sign a contract with one educational institution. The contents of the contract shall include the work tasks, the working place, the responsibilities of the position, the term of appointment, rights and obligations of both parties, the assessment methods, the dispute settlement mechanism and liability for breach of contract.

It is worth noting that, with the agreement of the employing institution, foreign teachers can reasonably work part-time in other educational institutions. But the accumulated part-time teaching time shall not exceed the teaching time in the employing institution.

Filing and Sharing of Teachers’ Information

For educational institutions, a material copy or electronic material of the employed teachers shall be uploaded to the national comprehensive information service platform for foreign teachers, and the service platform shall generate the record number of foreign teachers, one number for each foreign teacher.

Note: The national comprehensive information service platform for foreign teachers only allows the registration of educational administrative departments and educational institutions.

For government departments, information sharing mechanisms for foreign teachers should be established, including lists of foreign teachers who have been granted work permits to work in China and those who are prohibited from employment.

Three Ways to Make Suggestions

Here are three ways to give advice about the draft, from July 21 to August 21, 2020.

  • Log into the official website of Ministry of Justice of the People’s Republic of China(www.moj.gov.cn/www.chinalaw.gov.cn), and click the legislative opinions collection (立法意见征集) in the home page;
  • Send an Email to : fzb@moe.edu.cn ;
  • Send via mail to the policy and regulation judicial system office of the Ministry of Education. Address: No. 35, Damuchang Hutong, Xicheng District, Beijing (postcode: 100816).

Hong Kong, Singapore lift airport bans on transit passengers

Hong Kong, Singapore lift airport bans on transit passengers

Hong Kong and Singapore airports will lift their bans on transit passengers from the start of June as part of the easing of coronavirus restrictions which have stunted the economy and decimated air travel.

The moves will be especially welcomed by Cathay Pacific and Singapore Airlines, which rely on their respective home airports as transfer hubs for connecting flights more than destinations in their own right.

Hong Kong Airport to lift transit bans from June 1

Transit services at Hong Kong International Airport will “gradually resume” from June 1, city leader Carrie Lam confirmed at a press briefing earlier today.

“The epidemic has eased,” she said. “We are resuming daily activities in society and economy step by step.”

Hong Kong implemented a ban on all visitors to the city, and passengers in transit through Hong Kong International Airport, on March 24.

All arrivals at the airport are currently required to go to the nearby AsiaWorld Expo site for COVID-19 testing, before proceeding to their home for the mandatory 14 day quarantine period.

There’s been no advice as to if this practice will continue, nor what restrictions might be imposed on passengers in transit at the airport itself, although wearing masks may be required.

Cathay Pacific, which has been hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic, has since April operated to “a skeleton schedule” of barely a dozen destinations served by just a handful of flights per week.

However, the airline plans aim to put a little flesh onto those bones with a slow but steady rebuild of its international network beginning June 21.

This will see Sydney, London Heathrow, Los Angeles and Vancouver boosted to five flights per week. Melbourne is set for three flights per week, along with Amsterdam, Frankfurt, San Francisco, Mumbai and Delhi.

Cathay will also mount daily flights to Singapore, Tokyo, Osaka, Seoul, Taipei, Manila, Bangkok, Jakarta and Ho Chi Minh City, while its Asia-focussed Cathay Dragon arm is set for daily service to Beijing, Shanghai and Kuala Lumpur.

Apply here

Singapore Changi Airport to lift transit bans from June 2

Travellers will once again be allowed to transit through Singapore’s Changi Airport from June 2, although in the short term, Singapore stopovers will be very different to what travellers are accustomed to.

Instead of browsing the duty-free shops or kicking back in the airline lounge , transit passengers will “remain in designated facilities in the transit area and not mix with other passengers whilst at Changi Airport,” said the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore in announcing the relaxed restrictions overnight.

Airport staff will wear personal protective equipment when interacting with passengers, while existing precautionary measures, such as safe distancing and temperature checks for passengers and staff, will remain in place.

Singapore’s ban on transit passengers came into effect from Tuesday March 24, accompanied by a ban on short-term visitors to the island nation, after it recorded its first two deaths from Covid-19 complications.

source: www.executivetraveller.com/news

South Africans: 5 reasons you should teach English in China

I know it’s hard to believe – a teaching job with a decent salary and enough time to travel and explore? I thought so too when my friend told me about his experiences while teaching English abroad. But then I did some more research and decided it really was worth a try. Among other possibilities, I chose to teach English in China.

Why China? Well, with a huge population, a growing demand for learning English, and a rich culture, China offers both the job opportunities and the excitement any teacher would wish for.

As a South African you are from the start in a very good position to become a teacher in China. Being able to speak English as a native language is a valuable asset nowadays and more and more South Africans are using that advantage to find satisfying teaching jobs in China. There is a large South African expat community there and you may even contact some of the members if you have any questions about their life abroad.

Even though as a South African you enjoy a wide range of choice regarding the countries you can teach in, let me give you a few reasons why teaching in China was a dream come true for me and why it may also be the same for you.

1. English Teachers are in High Demand

China is booming, and with its rapidly growing middle class, many people are looking to improve their lives and the lives of their children. Speaking English can open many doors for them. That’s where you come in.

There are so many places where you can teach: kindergartens, high schools, international schools, language schools… Even Chinese companies are hiring teachers to help their business professionals.

There are certain requirements you must meet to be able to teach in China, and you will, of course, need to obtain an employment visa (Z-visa), but this is a relatively straightforward process. Make some effort and, depending on your contract and the city you choose, you can enjoy benefits such as free housing, free flights or a housing allowance.

English Teaching jobs in Hangzhou

2. Travel Opportunities are Fantastic

Yes, after a while you will have time to travel around the country and experience it like no tourist can. China has so much to offer!

Yes, after a while you will have time to travel around the country and experience it like no tourist can. China has so much to offer!

There are the well-known big cities, of course. But this country is so much more. Its Yunnan and Shaanxi provinces are the home of the most exciting hikes and remains of ancient cities. Guilin and Yangshuo offer backpackers the chance to explore hot springs, mud caves, and the famous rice fields, all while staying in nearby villages. Whatever province you choose, you are guaranteed something spectacular!

3. You Can Learn a New Language

They say that Chinese is extremely difficult to learn. However, once you move there, you’ll realise that it’s not quite the case. If you’re willing to put in some work, immerse yourself in the language every day and communicate with the locals, you can pick up a lot in a short time.

Start with the basics, practise regularly with your friends or students, and you will move on to more complex things soon.

And anyway – wouldn’t this new ability look impressive in your CV?

4. The Food is Amazing

Every province in China has its distinct style of cooking, so the variety of dishes is unbelievable. There is something for everyone. For example, noodles and dumplings are typical for Northern China, sweet and light food for Eastern China, while in the central part they mostly like really spicy dishes.

You will also learn a lot about customs and etiquette in Chinese dining, which may be quite different than what you’re used to. All in all, even the food in China is an adventure!

5. The Students Are Fun

For the most part, the students in China are enthusiastic, fun-loving and respectful of their teachers.

However, it is a bit of a myth that they are really well-behaved in class. A lot of them see their ‘’foreign teacher class’’ as an opportunity to take a break from the pressure of their other classes. But this isn’t a bad thing. It just means that you can do your job in a more relaxed manner, with more fun games!

Teaching English in China is a lot of work, especially in the beginning, but it is also hugely rewarding. Besides being excellent for your career, it also comes with some benefits that teachers in many other countries don’t have.
With some effort put in, you may have an unforgettable life experience!

Source: https://www.wanderlustmovement.org      

Why teaching in China tops being a tourist

shanghai- teach English in china

Teaching abroad and traveling are popular choices among people who have finished university, but aren’t quite ready to enter the working world. Both are valuable experiences that open your eyes to a new culture and way of life, but which is best? When it comes to exploring the Middle Kingdom, teaching English arguably offers more advantages over traveling. Here are some of the main benefits of teaching in China offers over tourism.

Experience More of the Culture

Ancient history, age-old traditions, and cultural superstitions combine to make Chinese culture both rich and complex. Visitors get a mere glimpse of this 5,000-year-old civilization, while those teaching in China have the chance to delve deeper and experience more of this fascinating country.

Living and teaching in China, you will discover fascinating cultural differences and language through everyday tasks such as going to the supermarket, commuting and visiting the bank. Living in a typical apartment in a local neighborhood, you truly will experience how the locals live.

Between life in and outside of work, English teachers in China meet a wide range of people. From your students to your colleagues, to the street food seller you pass on your commute, your daily routine opens you up to interacting with people from all walks of life. Forming friendships, discovering the language and working with locals will help you better understand and appreciate the culture than perhaps possible as a tourist.

Add to Your CV

Though teaching in China is growing in popularity, many remain under the impression it’s simply for those who wish to begin a teaching career, and may instead choose to travel.

Of course, teaching abroad is extremely advantageous for anyone planning to teach in their home country. Though, what many don’t realize is that it is an enriching experience that equips you with skills useful to almost any industry.

International experience is becoming increasingly sought after by employers. Living and teaching abroad not only gives you this but also the ability to adapt to a new culture, way of life and working environment.  When competing against hundreds of applicants with equally impressive credentials, such experience certainly helps you stand out from the crowd.

If you’re still not sure about the teaching, consider the variety of skills you can gain from it. Public speaking, adaptability, problem solving, and time management are just a few skills teachers use that are sought by employers across the board. Furthermore, foreign language skills are highly desired in many industries. The exposure to native speakers, immersive environment and appealing schedule teaching in China provides, make it ideal for language learning.


An Exciting Way of Life

The reality of teaching in China is just as exciting as it sounds. Even mundane tasks like popping to the shop, taking the bus, or commuting are interesting in a foreign culture. You might have traveled across the world to work, but work is only part of the adventure. There’s always something to learn in your new environment and whether you’re in the classroom or exploring, it’s equally enthralling.

This excitement of daily life is augmented by the appreciation English teachers in China receive from their colleagues and students. The respect for teachers and interest in foreigners among general Chinese society means you will be welcomed into your new home and workplace and feel valued. Moreover, English teachers in China have the opportunity to make a real impact on students’ lives. English education is extremely important in China and the exposure to your native accent and culture will help them hugely. This truly rewarding experience helps you give to the community in a way that is simply not possible for tourists.

Get The Best of Both Worlds by Teaching in China

Foreign English teachers are in particularly high demand in China, making it a very appealing destination to teach in. Long-term English teachers in China receive generous salaries in exchange for teaching an appealing schedule. Salary and working hours depend of course on location, but English teachers in China can earn around 5000 – 17,000 RMB per month and teach for 15-30 hours per week. In addition, most schools provide free accommodation close to the campus, giving English teachers in China with a comfortable lifestyle.

Long-term English teachers in China benefit from several national holidays throughout the year. This, combined with generous salaries and minimal expenses easily allows teachers in China to get the best of both worlds; earning while travelling. A 7-day holiday in October, 4-6 weeks in January and various long weekends thro

The Flexibility of Teaching in China

The beauty of teaching in China is the flexibility it offers. If you, like many others, realise towards the end of your contract you haven’t had enough, it’s easy to extend. Your school is likely to offer you a renewed contract, sometimes with a pay rise. Should you decide it’s time to move on, you’ll find that schools across the country are looking for teachers. With some TEFL experience under your belt, you’re sure to find a suitable role.

You may even find teaching in China has whetted your appetite for teaching abroad and a new challenge. Several of our previous teachers have returned to China, while others have embarked on an adventure in a different country. Whatever you choose to do after, you’ll find that teaching in China opens so many doors!

throughout the year means that whether you want a shortstop in Japan or a few weeks in Thailand, you’re sure to get the chance!

Source: https://teach-english-in-china.co.uk      



Living in Hangzhou: Helen Anglin on Life in China

by | Living Abroad

Hangzhou, China

Living in Hangzhou has been a whirlwind experience for Helen and even though she’s now in a different country she carried with her some great memories of China! 

We truly believe there is no better way to learn about a new city, a new country or a new culture than living there. Our Living Abroad series is designed to tell stories of living overseas and show people that the world is really not such a scary place. We hope it inspires more people to pack up their bags, travel slow and see what it’s really like to live in a different place. If you’d like to tell your story, there’s more information at the end of Helen’s story.  

Here’s what Helen had to say about Hangzhou.

Where are you originally from and what did you do before?

I am originally from Bristol in the UK. Since graduating I’ve worked in various jobs, mainly customer service, retail, and the theater. However, in 2014 I started traveling and haven’t stopped (much) since. It was September 2015 that my boyfriend and I moved to Hangzhou.

What is it like to live in Hangzhou as an expat/ foreigner?

I think living anywhere is very different to simply traveling somewhere. We live in a very local community so we stand out a lot from everyone and get some very funny looks sometimes. Overall, though, people are very friendly, and it’s been very useful to learn some basic Mandarin to get by.

living in Hangzhou

What did a typical day look like for you?

I worked as a primary school English teacher. I would wake up early at 6.15am every day as classes started at 8 am. An average day for me has 4 classes with some time in between to relax and prepare lessons. Every day is different with teaching which is why I love it. The classes and topics vary. With primary students, I had to make sure I had lots of activities planned to keep all the children engaged!

In the evenings, my boyfriend and I would go out to eat in the local restaurants and do some work for our other jobs online. I’d also keep everyone up to date with my blog and we’d plan some trips for our weeks and National holidays as we loved exploring more of China.


Why did you choose Hangzhou?

We knew that we wanted to travel and teach somewhere in Asia (very broad!). However, it was when we were in Poland last year that we met a guy who lived in Hangzhou for 4 years. He really recommended the city and set us up with some contacts who helped us to get our jobs.

What did you love about living in Hangzhou?

I love the hospitality I received and the support and kindness from the other teachers. I made some wonderful friends and loved trying lots of new food (I wasn’t a fan of all the food!). I mostly loved that it was a totally different culture to anywhere else I’d ever been, and living there means I got a real insight into what life was like.

What are the local people like?

The locals were very friendly, despite our very basic mandarin speaking skills. The language was definitely challenging though when we first arrived and it was difficult to communicate with neighbors and when ordering food. I think they appreciated us trying, though. (CYI can always help with that – providing you free assistance 24/7)

What work did you do there?

I was an English teacher in a primary school.

What is the cost of living in Hangzhou?

Our teaching agency paid for our flat which was approximately 2000 RMB a month (about £200).  As for everything else, the cost of living is super low. If you use public transport and eat locally you can easily get by on 2000 RMB a month. Of course, we enjoyed meeting up with others for drinks on the weekend and traveling so we spent more like 4000 RMB a month. This is still very low compared to the cost of living in London.

Do you need a visa? If so how long can you stay in the country for?

You do need a visa. I had a working visa. CYI again can help with all that

How safe is Hangzhou?

I felt so safe in Hangzhou. I would happily walk alone at night and feel very safe. Like anywhere, you need to be wary, but overall I felt safer here than in the UK.

Is there a big expat community?

I wouldn’t say there is a large expat community but there is quite a few. There are certain places you can head to on a weekend and you’ll be sure to find lots of other expats. Meeting expats wasn’t a problem at all.

Are there any other good places to travel to close by?

Most definitely! Shanghai is only about an hour away on the train and there are lots of other small places to visit such as Suzhou and Nanjing. Hangzhou is large though and has a lot to offer.

And, finally any advice or encouragement for someone wanting to take the leap and live overseas?

Do it! It’s a really daunting thing to do but I think it’s definitely worth trying. I found the teaching challenging and it took me a while to adjust to the different lifestyle and culture but it was so worth it. It opened my eyes to Chinese culture and lifestyle and was so rewarding.