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Deepen Production Capacity Cooperation, Achieve Common Development

Speech of Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin at the 2nd Session of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road and Promoting International Production Capacity and Equipment Manufacturing Cooperation Forum

2016/09/12

(September 11, Nanning,Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region)

Distinguished Secretary Peng Qinghua, Deputy Director Ning Jizhe, Vice Minister Gao Yan,
Honorable guests, ladies and gentlemen:

I am very glad to attend the China-ASEAN Expo and the 2nd Session of the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road and Promoting International Production Capacity and Equipment Manufacturing Cooperation Forum in Nanning. The theme of the forum, “Collectively Envision a New Blueprint of Cooperation, Jointly Build a Community of Common Destiny”, grasps the key of the development of China-ASEAN relations and mutually beneficial cooperation.

This year is the first year of the ASEAN Community as well as the 25th anniversary of China-ASEAN dialogue relations, so it bears historic significance. Over the past 25 years, holding high the banner of development and cooperation and pursuing mutual respect, understanding, trust and support, China and the ASEAN have become sincere partners with shared destiny, mixed interest and profound friendship. Recently, China-ASEAN cooperation has witnessed fruitful highlights. We worked together in the establishment of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, completed negotiations on upgrading the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, actively implemented the “Belt and Road” initiative and set up the Lancang-Mekong River cooperation mechanism. In 2015, trade volume between the two sides reached 472.2 billion dollars and China was the biggest trade partner of the ASEAN for the 7th consecutive year. The accumulative volume of mutual investment between the two sides exceeded 160 billion dollars and the number of annual personnel exchanges exceeded 23 million. China-ASEAN relations have become the cornerstone of peace and stability, the driving force of development and prosperity and an example of cooperation in the region. Four days ago, Premier Li Keqiang and leaders of the ten ASEAN countries successfully held the Commemorative Summit Marking the 25th Anniversary of China-ASEAN Dialogue Relations. During the summit, leaders from China and ASEAN countries gathered together to deepen friendship and discuss cooperation, setting goals and charting the course for the future development of bilateral relations. China-ASEAN relations are going to embark upon a better future at the new starting point.

Ladies and gentlemen,

As a key area of China-ASEAN cooperation, production capacity cooperation is also an inherent part of the joint construction of the Maritime Silk Road between China and neighboring countries. Joint Statement on Production Capacity Cooperation among Lancang-Mekong Countries was issued at the first Lancang-Mekong Cooperation Leaders’ Meeting in Sanya this March and Joint Statement between China and ASEAN on Production Capacity Cooperation was issued at the Commemorative Summit Marking the 25th Anniversary of China-ASEAN Dialogue Relations, which serve as an important guide for production capacity cooperation between China and ASEAN countries. At present, bilateral production capacity cooperation is in the ascendant, and preliminary results have been achieved in a batch of infrastructure construction and industrial park projects. This is mainly attributed to the following reasons:

First, it complies with the economic transformation and upgrade of the two sides. Currently, Asian countries are coping with the mounting downward economic pressure through structural reform. China is stepping up its efforts in promoting economic transformation and upgrade, strengthening supply-side structural reform, and accelerating the development of the new economy. ASEAN countries are also deepening economic restructuring and forging new investment and growth points. Against the new situation, strengthening international production capacity cooperation is an important move to maintain the medium-high growth rate and strive towards a medium-high level of the Chinese economy, which is also an important part of the new round of high-quality opening up. At the same time, it will also improve the economic quality and efficiency of ASEAN countries and advance the robust and sustainable development of the Asian and world economy.

Second, it is in line with the development needs and interest appeals of Asian countries. Asian countries, many of which are in the initial stage of industrialization and urbanization, give top priority to development. They have demands and willingness to strengthen infrastructure construction, advance connectivity, and carry out international production capacity cooperation. After years of development, China has entered the mature stage of industrialization with a large amount of competitive industries. We are willing to deepen production capacity cooperation with Asian countries including ASEAN countries, share experience in industrial civilization and peaceful development, help relevant countries improve infrastructure construction, elevate the level of industrialization, speed up the development of the real economy, and enhance their position in the global industrial chain and value chain.

Third, it follows the unique and effective Asian way. Asian countries have established the Asian way of mutual respect, equal treatment, consensus through consultation and accommodation of the comfort level of all sides through years of interaction and communication. It reflects the core of the Asian way and highly fits with the Silk Road spirit when China carries out production capacity cooperation with Asian countries on the basis of voluntariness, equality, and mutual benefit, thus wining positive support and response from various countries. China is ready to further dovetail development strategies, reinforce production capacity cooperation in a pragmatic and effective manner, and achieve mutual benefit and win-win results to the greatest extent with other countries. We will strictly abide by market principles, pursue international norms, and uphold openness and inclusiveness in cooperation as well.

Ladies and gentlemen,

International production capacity cooperation is a systematic project, and the Maritime Silk Road is a long-term project. China is willing to work with ASEAN countries and countries along the Maritime Silk Road to deepen production capacity cooperation so as to inject impetus into respective development and mutually beneficial cooperation. In this regard, I would like to share a few ideas with you:

Firstly, we should deepen China-ASEAN relations. In the next 25 years, China is willing to, together the ASEAN, firmly grasp the general direction of the development of bilateral relations, further strengthen strategic communication, enhance the docking of development strategies and paths, propel the implementation of the “2+7 cooperation framework”, and usher China-ASEAN relations from the “growth stage” of rapid development into the “mature stage” of quality improvement and upgrade so as to forge an even closer China-ASEAN community of common destiny and let the cooperation results better benefit regional countries and their people.

Secondly, we should strive to build highlight projects. We should continue to assume a cooperation attitude of pragmatism and efficiency, and make steady headway in the construction of connectivity infrastructure projects, such as China-Laos Railway, China-Thailand Railway, and the Jakarta-Bandung High-speed Railway, so as to form the Trans-Asia Railway Network at an early date and set an example for regional connectivity. We must further well plan the construction of China-Laos industrial park, China-Malaysia industrial park, China-Myanmar industrial park, China-Indonesia industrial park and other industrial parks, optimize the layout of the industrial chain, accelerate regional industrial upgrade, and serve regional development.

Thirdly, we should make the most of mechanisms and platforms. We should give full play to the leading role of China-ASEAN Summit and take full advantage of such platforms as the China-ASEAN Expo to bolster the cluster development of production capacity cooperation. Lancang-Mekong cooperation is a new highlight and growth point of China-ASEAN cooperation, and production capacity cooperation is a preferential field in Lancang-Mekong cooperation. We must make full use of the Lancang-Mekong cooperation mechanism, earnestly carry out early-harvest projects and improve sub-regional cooperation, so as to promote the integrated development of regional industrial chains.

Fourthly, we should accelerate the construction of Maritime Silk Road. We should continue to deepen cooperation with ASEAN countries in marine economy, maritime connectivity, maritime security, maritime people-to-people and cultural exchanges, environment protection, scientific research and other areas, strengthen practical cooperation with Pakistan, Sri Lanka and other countries along the Maritime Silk Road, speed up the construction of projects including the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor and the Bangladesh-China-India-Myanmar Economic Corridor, expand production capacity cooperation to wider fields and higher levels, and aid early harvest results from the “Belt and Road” construction.

At last, I wish the forum and the expo a complete success! Thank you!

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