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Germany

Car-Loving Germans On The Road To Giving Up Their Wheels

Strongest among the under-30s, the trend of Germans renouncing car ownership has touched all age groups. Autos are increasingly a practical choice rather than status symbol.

Berlin: where autos and public transport meet (Susa Tom)
Berlin: where autos and public transport meet (Susa Tom)

Worldcrunch NEWS BITES

DIE WELT

BERLIN - Cars are playing ever less of a central role in the way young Germans script their lives. "They pack less of a punch as status symbols," says Andreas Knie of the Berlin Innovation Center for Mobility and Social Change. "The attitude towards cars and mobility is getting much more matter-of-fact.""

Knie, who spoke at the "Safe Car of Tomorrow"" symposium in Berlin, an event hosted by the German Traffic Safety Council, says that people increasingly make the conscious decision not to own a car.

The numbers tell the story. In 2000, in Germany, 510 out of every 1000 people aged 18 to 29 owned their own car. By 2015 that figure will have decreased to 335 out of every 1000 young adults. For those aged 30 to 39, by comparison, car ownership in 2000 stood at 870 per 1000; in 2015 the number is expected to be 785.

Public transportation, instead, is increasingly important for younger people, says Knie, who wants to find solutions to future mobility issues that optimize links between car manufacturers, energy providers and public transportation networks.

Read the full article in German by Klaus Lockschen

photo - Susa Tom

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FOCUS: Russia-Ukraine War

With His Trip To Moscow, Xi Has Sent A Clear Message To The World

China has adopted a stance of pro-Putin neutrality since the start of Russia's invasion. But this is not an alliance of equals. China has the upper-hand and sees the opportunity to present itself as an alternative world leader.

Photo of ​Russia's President Vladimir Putin and China's President Xi Jinping in Moscow during the Chinese leader's state visit to Russia.

Russia's President Vladimir Putin and China's President Xi Jinping in Moscow during the Chinese leader's state visit to Russia.

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — While Russia is mired in Ukraine, and Vladimir Putin has become the target of an international arrest warrant, China appeared as a lifeline.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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Xi Jinping’s presence in Moscow from Monday to Wednesday was a bit like the "quiet force" visiting a friend in trouble. They offer him "face," as the Chinese expression for showing respect goes, referring to him as "dear friend"...

But reality sets in very quickly: between the couple, Beijing has the upper hand — and Moscow has no choice.

Since the invasion of Ukraine, China has observed what one diplomat astutely calls a "pro-Putin neutrality", a subtle balance that suits Beijing more than Moscow. Putin could have hoped for more active support, especially in the delivery of arms, technological products, or ways to circumvent Western sanctions. But China is helping Russia sparingly, while making sure to not incur sanctions in turn.

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