Talking points

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 04 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 04 April, 2012, 12:00am


Our editors will be looking ahead today to these developing stories ...

Ancestors take centre stage for the day

About 12,000 members of overseas Chinese communities gather at AsiaWorld-Expo to worship legendary ancestors of the Chinese people, one of countless events in ancestors' honour across the city during the annual Ching Ming festival, or tomb-sweeping holiday. The Lantau event is co-hosted by several local and overseas religious and academic groups, including the Beijing-based Chinese Confucian Academy. Meanwhile, across the mainland, millions of people are expected to venerate their ancestors on the last day of a three-day festival.

Unison reports on education of ethnic minorities

Hong Kong Unison, which campaigns for the rights of ethnic minorities, releases the findings of a survey on pre-primary education. The survey found only 30 per cent of kindergartens were able to provide support for ethnic-minority children to learn Cantonese. The group urged chief executive-elect Leung Chun-ying to honour his campaign pledge to provide support for teaching the language to such children.

Euro-zone tipped to show deepening slowdown

Euro-zone retail sales are expected to show the region's slowdown deepening, with economists forecasting that shoppers cut back on spending in February. Separately, factory orders for Germany, the powerhouse of the 17-nation grouping using the euro, are expected to show a 5.5 per cent fall in February, after slipping 4.9 per cent year-on-year in January.

Tate Modern gallery hosts a first for Hirst

British artist Damien Hirst opens his first major retrospective in London's Tate Modern. The work of the enfant terrible-turned-multimillionaire will be on show for five months as part of an arts festival whose finale occurs during the Olympics. The exhibition features 70 works including such classics as The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living, a tiger shark suspended in formaldehyde (left). Another draw will be For the Love of God, a life-sized platinum cast of an 18th-century skull encrusted with 8,601 diamonds.

Angola celebrates a decade of peace

Angola celebrates 10 years of peace after a devastating civil war, with parades and concerts hailing President Jose Eduardo dos Santos for ushering in an oil-fuelled boom. Dos Santos will unveil a peace monument in the eastern town of Luena, near the site where Unita rebel leader Jonas Savimbi was killed in a battle on February 22, 2002. The conflict left an estimated 500,000 dead and displaced four million. Roads, bridges, farms and entire towns were destroyed. This legacy is still visible, even as Angola emerges from the ashes of war as one of the world's fastest-growing economies.

Bonds on agenda as finance minister visits Tokyo

Chinese Finance Minister Xie Xuren (left) visits Tokyo for talks with Japanese counterpart Jun Azumi. Tokyo said Azumi would discuss Japan's purchase of China's sovereign bonds and promote settlement of bilateral trade with the countries' own currencies. Azumi said yesterday he also hoped to see progress on whether countries will contribute more to the IMF.