China, SE Asia see paths align for growth

2021-12-17 08:20:30China Daily Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download

A staff member works at a cloth production workshop of a new material technology company in Fucheng county, Hengshui, North China's Hebei province, Nov 30, 2021. (Photo/Xinhua)

With teamwork, encouraging prospects for recovery observed at global summit

China and Southeast Asia should keep working together to strengthen regional integration in an effort to hasten the economic recovery from the pandemic, a forum heard on Thursday.

Senior officials, business leaders and experts at the Global Chinese Economic and Technology Summit discussed the need for nations to develop both physical and digital infrastructure and to invest more on renewable energy in line with global climate commitments.

Malaysian Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob said his country is a "firm believer in free, fair and open trade" and that the government's signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, or RCEP, agreement "signifies Malaysia's commitment to regional integration".

Ismail Sabri, who delivered the opening address to the forum via video link, said Malaysia was the first country in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to formalize diplomatic relations with China in 1974, and bilateral ties have since flourished.

Jusuf Kalla, former vice-president of Indonesia, said the global economy will recover with the cooperation and participation of all.

The annual event, organized by the KSI Strategic Institute for Asia Pacific, was held in the town of Batu Ferringhi in Malaysia's Penang state. The forum, themed Promoting Business, Cultural and Digital Economy Cooperation and Diplomacy, took place online and offline.

Noting that ASEAN is China's biggest trading partner, speakers said the RCEP, which takes effect on Jan 1, together with China-led initiatives like the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and the Belt and Road Initiative, will further strengthen diplomatic and economic ties between the two sides.

"Despite the pandemic and a slowdown in economic growth, the Chinese market has been becoming much more open for international investors and companies," Fan Gang, president of the China Development Institute and director of China's National Economic Research Institute, said via video.

"There are risks and difficulties we need to discuss. But it is also the time for us to think of how to explore and utilize all the new opportunities ahead," Fan said.

China's Ambassador to Malaysia Ouyang Yujing said in a special address that China will share many development opportunities with other countries. He spoke of how China and Malaysia are working together to achieve economic recovery and promote digital and green efforts.

Diaspora important

Zhang Xiaoqiang, executive vice-chairman of the China Center for International Economic Exchanges and former vice-minister of China's National Development and Reform Commission, said the Chinese diaspora is an important element for the development of China's economy.

ASEAN countries are home to some of the world's biggest ethnic Chinese communities.

"We are willing to work together with other Chinese (community) organizations to exchange our ideas and to strengthen our relationship and cooperation in this post-pandemic environment," Zhang said in his video address.

Experts and business leaders also gathered online to talk about China's role in the world economy in a panel discussion.

Chheang Vannarith, president of the Asia Vision Institute in Cambodia, highlighted ASEAN's move to develop clean energy and how China can help the region develop clean technologies and digital infrastructure.

The construction of huge projects in Cambodia and Laos has gone ahead even during the pandemic, said Chheang Vannarith, citing the launch of the China-Laos Railway.

Danny Alexander, vice-president for policy and strategy at the AIIB, said there is a "strong focus on the infrastructure that is needed to enable connectivity and to enable recovery to take place in a green way".

He added: "(We need to) recognize that the action that we take in this decade... is absolutely critical to achieving the financial flows that are necessary to the developing world."

Din Syamsuddin, chairman of the Centre for Dialogue and Cooperation Among Civilizations in Jakarta, said Indonesians are "delighted to see the two countries-Indonesia and China-be in a close relationship".

Wang Huiyao, counselor to the China State Council and president of the Beijing-based Center for China and Globalization, and Felix Sutter, president of the Swiss Chinese Chamber of Commerce, were among the participants in the discussion, which was moderated by Steve Howard, secretary-general of the Australia-based Global Foundation.


Most popular in 24h

MoreTop news


Back to top About Us | Jobs | Contact Us | Privacy Policy
Copyright ©1999-2021 All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.
[网上传播视听节目许可证(0106168)] [京ICP证040655号]
[京公网安备 11010202009201号] [京ICP备05004340号-1]