China mulling bid for 2018 Winter Games

BEIJING // Four months after successfully holding the Summer Olympics in Beijing, China is considering a bid to host the 2018 Winter Games in the northern city of Harbin, state media said. Harbin, capital of the northeastern Heilongjiang province, has spent 3 billion yuan (Dh1.6bn) on venues and facilities to host 4,000 athletes for the World University Winter Games in February, and would use the event as a dry run, the province's governor Li Zhanshu told the China Daily.

"If the hosting of the 2009 Winter Universiade can win applause from all the guests, it will enhance our confidence to bid for the Winter Olympic Games," Li said. Harbin, a one-time enclave for White Russian émigrés after their defeat in the Russian Civil War (1917-21) but more famous for its annual ice sculpture festival, previously failed to be shortlisted for the 2010 Games awarded to Vancouver.

"If we fail again for the 2018 Games, we are determined to win the 2022 Winter Games. It's our dream to host China's first Winter Olympics," Li said, adding that final sign-off for the bid would come from China's sport ministry. The bustling city of some five million people would face competition from Munich, which declared itself a candidate last December, and from France, where three towns ? Annecy, Nice and Grenoble ? have flagged interest.

August's Beijing Games were largely hailed as a spectacular success for China, despite myriad concerns, ranging from air pollution to human rights abuses, dogging organisers in the lead-up. China is also to host the 2010 Asian Games in the southern city of Guangzhou. *Reuters

No more lice

Defining head lice

Pediculus humanus capitis are tiny wingless insects that feed on blood from the human scalp. The adult head louse is up to 3mm long, has six legs, and is tan to greyish-white in colour. The female lives up to four weeks and, once mature, can lay up to 10 eggs per day. These tiny nits firmly attach to the base of the hair shaft, get incubated by body heat and hatch in eight days or so.

Identifying lice

Lice can be identified by itching or a tickling sensation of something moving within the hair. One can confirm that a person has lice by looking closely through the hair and scalp for nits, nymphs or lice. Head lice are most frequently located behind the ears and near the neckline.

Treating lice at home

Head lice must be treated as soon as they are spotted. Start by checking everyone in the family for them, then follow these steps. Remove and wash all clothing and bedding with hot water. Apply medicine according to the label instructions. If some live lice are still found eight to 12 hours after treatment, but are moving more slowly than before, do not re-treat. Comb dead and remaining live lice out of the hair using a fine-toothed comb.
After the initial treatment, check for, comb and remove nits and lice from hair every two to three days. Soak combs and brushes in hot water for 10 minutes.Vacuum the floor and furniture, particularly where the infested person sat or lay.

Courtesy Dr Vishal Rajmal Mehta, specialist paediatrics, RAK Hospital

The Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi’s Arabic Language Centre will mark International Women’s Day at the Bologna Children's Book Fair with the Abu Dhabi Translation Conference. Prolific Emirati author Noora Al Shammari, who has written eight books that feature in the Ministry of Education's curriculum, will appear in a session on Wednesday to discuss the challenges women face in getting their works translated.

Sly Cooper and the Thievius Raccoonus

Developer: Sucker Punch Productions
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Console: PlayStation 2 to 5
Rating: 5/5

Why it pays to compare

A comparison of sending Dh20,000 from the UAE using two different routes at the same time - the first direct from a UAE bank to a bank in Germany, and the second from the same UAE bank via an online platform to Germany - found key differences in cost and speed. The transfers were both initiated on January 30.

Route 1: bank transfer

The UAE bank charged Dh152.25 for the Dh20,000 transfer. On top of that, their exchange rate margin added a difference of around Dh415, compared with the mid-market rate.

Total cost: Dh567.25 - around 2.9 per cent of the total amount

Total received: €4,670.30 

Route 2: online platform

The UAE bank’s charge for sending Dh20,000 to a UK dirham-denominated account was Dh2.10. The exchange rate margin cost was Dh60, plus a Dh12 fee.

Total cost: Dh74.10, around 0.4 per cent of the transaction

Total received: €4,756

The UAE bank transfer was far quicker – around two to three working days, while the online platform took around four to five days, but was considerably cheaper. In the online platform transfer, the funds were also exposed to currency risk during the period it took for them to arrive.

The years Ramadan fell in May






Keep up with all the Middle East and North Africa athletes at the 2024 Paris Olympics

      By signing up, I agree to The National's privacy policy