Tan Jing, China's well-known singer, was honored as one of the 2011 China Cultural figures, a prize jointly conferred by the Chinese Culture Promotion Society and Phoenix TV in Hong Kong. Set up in 2009, the title is for honoring outstanding people in preserving and carrying forward Chinese culture to the world.
Invited by Gerhard Heiberg, Marketing Commission Chairman of the International Olympic Committee, Tan hit the stage in London at the Royal Albert Hall in November with a concert that aims to promote the Olympic spirit.
Tan, 34, got famous in China when she became the champion of a popular singing contest in the China Central Television Young Singers Contest in 2000. Tan invented a special singing style by combining popular singing and Chinese ethnic singing.
Tan has performed in many countries including the United States, Japan and Australia. She also performed at the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai and the 2010 Guangzhou Asian Games. Besides her singing career, Tan is also enthusiastic in public welfare.
Isaac Hou, a Chinese American street performer, was chosen to perform at the 2012 CCTV Spring Festival Gala, a popular TV variety show during the Chinese New Year. Hou gained the most online votes selecting grassroots stars for the gala.
Hou, 31, was born in the United States. Since he was a little boy, he had many creative ideas and has been traveling in many countries to give street performances, such as dancing with his crystal ball, acrobatics and fire dancing. He participated in the 2011 China's Got Talent, a talent show in China, and impressed the masses by jumping through hoops and dancing with his crystal ball. His performance was uploaded to the Internet and he was dubbed "crystal ball talent" by netizens.
Former Football Head
Xie Yalong, former Vice President of the Chinese Football Association (CFA), is facing an upcoming trial as China started the long-awaited trials for soccer corruption on November 19. The date for Xie's trial has yet to be announced.
The first group of people on trial include Zhang Jianqiang, former Director of the CFA Referee Committee, Li Zhimin, a former member of the Board of Directors of Shaanxi Guoli soccer club, Yang Yimin, another vice president of the CFA, and Lu Jun, a 2002 World Cup referee who was once dubbed the country's "Golden Whistle."
Xie, 56, was vice president of the CFA from 2005 to 2008. In 2009, Xie was arrested for bribery and match-fixing.
China's professional soccer leagues have been plagued with allegations of gambling, match-fixing and corrupt referees for years. The police launched a probe in 2009.
"The central bank must learn lessons from the global financial crisis to better handle the intensity, pace and focus of financial macrocontrol."
Zhou Xiaochuan, Governor of the People's Bank of China (PBOC), in Beijing on December 21, reiterating that the PBOC will continue to implement prudent monetary policy in 2012
"The China Development Bank (CDB) takes the initiative to issue yuan-denominated bonds through the Central Moneymarket Unit (CMU) bid as the first mainland financial institution. This is a positive exploration in the mechanism of bonds issuance and is a meaningful measure to facilitate market development."
Gao Jian, Executive Vice President of the CDB, speaking after the bank announced its issuance of yuan-denominated bonds in Hong Kong through the CMU of the Hong Kong Monetary Authority in Hong Kong on December 21
"The upcoming 2012 is a make-or-break year for the world economy. The economy will be either 'muddling through' or falling back to a renewed recession. There is simply no way in between and the key is how policymakers will act in the face of current crisis."
Hong Pingfan, Chief of Global Economic Monitoring in the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) at the United Nations, in an recent interview with Xinhua News Agency in New York
"It will be focused on jobs, and that is a big challenge in the context when zero growth is expected in most of our economies. We must take strong action on employment. Bringing financial stability to the euro zone remains absolutely the key for our future."
European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, in a video address in Brussels on December 20, saying that the next EU summit will be held on January 30, 2012
"No, our view has not changed that Assad needs to step down, that he is not the man to lead his country into the future."
Victoria Nuland, spokeswoman of the U.S. State Department, at a regular news briefing in Washington D.C. on December 20, calling for the Syrian president to step down, even as the Arab nation agreed to allow in Arab monitors