(Photo source: Xinhua)
From September 10 to 13, the 18th China-ASEAN Expo, themed “sharing new opportunities for land and sea channels and building a China-ASEAN community with a shared future” was held in Nanning. In his congratulatory letter to the 18th China-ASEAN Expo and China-ASEAN Business and Investment Summit, President Xi Jinping pointed out that over the past 30 years since the establishment of the dialogue between China and ASEAN, the two sides have deepened all-round cooperation, become each other's largest trading partner and enjoyed the most dynamic cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the two sides have fought the pandemic and overcome difficulties hand in hand, living up to the spirit of a community of a shared future with mutual support and practical actions.
This year marks not only the 30th anniversary of the establishment of China-ASEAN dialogue and the year of China-ASEAN sustainable development cooperation, but also the 8th anniversary of the "Belt and Road" initiative. ASEAN is an important regional partner in promoting the development of the "Belt and Road", and China-ASEAN Expo is an important platform to promote the level of trade and investment facilitation, development of cross-border industrial parks and cross-border e-commerce.
China-ASEAN Expo can play its role in promoting strategies of opening-up and cooperation. China-ASEAN Expo has prospered along with China-ASEAN relations and helped to align the "Belt and Road" initiative and ASEAN economic development strategies. In the first half of this year, trade between the two sides grew by 38.2% year-on-year, continuing to show strong momentum of growth. Since the signing of the RCEP in November 2020, the function of China-ASEAN Expo has expanded from serving "10+1" cooperation to serving the RCEP and the "Belt and Road" to promote the extensive regional economic integration to a higher level. The Expo also helps the "Belt and Road" become one of the world’s largest platforms of international cooperation and sets examples for regional cooperation while benefiting more than 2 billion people in 11 countries.
China-ASEAN digital economy cooperation needs to be enhanced. We need to take the opportunity of digital economy to promote the development of China-ASEAN digital economic partnership and make good use of China-ASEAN Expo to promote the cooperation on 5G, big data, artificial intelligence, digital government service and digital industry, and facilitate digital industries and digitalization of industries. In this way, digital technologies can play their role in pandemic control.
It is important to promote the "Belt and Road" initiative and build a community of a shared future so that all economies and people can enjoy the benefits. Every nation or region is a link of the industrial chain and a part of the community of shared interests. All parties involved need to come to a consensus on how to solve issues of international concern and human survival. The current task is to fight the pandemic and revitalize the economy. We need to support each other’s anti-pandemic efforts, share information and experience, conduct practical cooperation on vaccine R&D, vaccine production and mutual recognition. All parties involved need to achieve sustainable development, preserve the security of regional industrial and supply chains and fight hegemonism, separatism and extremism with practical actions.
Contributed by Wang Zhenzhen, associate professor of School of Economics, Fujian Normal University/ researcher of Fujian Institute of Theoretical System of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics
Translated by Wu Zidan