The Global Conference on the 10th Anniversary of the BRI and the Golden Age of China-Central Asia Engagement event is held in Astana, Kazakhstan, on Thursday. DONG MING / FOR CHINA DAILY
BEIJING, Sept. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Ten years ago at Nazarbayev University in Astana, the capital of Kazakhstan, President Xi Jinping proposed for the first time building the Silk Road Economic Belt, which later evolved into the Belt and Road Initiative and now stands as a testament to the power of multilateralism.
On Thursday, esteemed guests from various countries and international organizations gathered in Astana for the Global Conference on the 10th Anniversary of the BRI and the Golden Age of China-Central Asia Engagement event.
The conference looked back at the achievements made during the first decade of the BRI, which have further strengthened the bonds of friendship between China and Kazakhstan, and also celebrated the Golden Age of engagement between China and Central Asia.
Erlan Karin, State counselor of Kazakhstan, said in a congratulatory letter that the Belt and Road Initiative has grown to encompass 180 countries and international organizations and has contributed to forming an open, inclusive and balanced regional cooperation system through joint efforts.
“The Republic of Kazakhstan plays a unique role in promoting the BRI,” he said. “The coupling of national infrastructure projects and this initiative creates a synergy in transport and logistics systems and paves the way for a new architecture of transcontinental corridors.”
Zhang Xiao, China’s Ambassador to Kazakhstan, said in his speech that the friendship between China and Kazakhstan is an invaluable treasure for the people of both countries.
Zhang also reviewed the fruitful achievements of China-Kazakhstan cooperation in recent years. A video Thirty Thousand Miles Along the Silk Road was presented, showcasing key moments from the first decade of the BRI.
In the face of recent global challenges, including significant geopolitical tensions, economic uncertainties, energy dilemmas and environmental crises, the guest speakers examined the role of the BRI in offering solutions and fostering international collaboration.
Vladimir Norov, director of the International Institute of Central Asia and former secretary-general of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, applauded the collaborative achievements between China and Central Asian nations, emphasizing how they have deepened regional interconnectedness.
Djoomart Otorbaev, former prime minister of Kyrgyzstan, emphasized the historical importance of the Silk Road to Central Asia’s development and its transition from a landlocked to a land-linked region.
Economic exchanges between China and Central Asia have played a pivotal role in the success of the BRI, not only fostering robust economic growth, but also strengthening diplomatic ties and deepening cultural connections between the two regions. During the “Golden 30 Years” — the period during which China established diplomatic ties with the five Central Asian nations — media from the BRI countries have collaborated extensively, yielding valuable outcomes.
Shi Huangjun, vice-president of the National Exhibition and Convention Center (Shanghai) praised Kazakhstan’s creativity and efforts in revitalization.
Shi emphasized that the BRI and the China International Import Expo (CIIE) share the goal of improving people’s lives. CIIE, which is closely linked to the BRI, fosters trade connectivity and cooperation through activities such as national exhibitions, enterprise showcases and innovation zones. Support from Kazakhstan has been instrumental in making CIIE a “golden gateway” for Kazakh firms entering the Chinese market. He welcomed all nations to use this gateway, strengthen ties with China, and collectively embrace another “Golden 30 Years” for China and Central Asia.
To fortify the ties between China and Kazakhstan, China Daily 21st Century English Education Media inked a memorandum of cooperation with Kazakhstan’s DKN world news. This agreement seeks to bolster media exchanges between the two nations, amplifying their collective efforts in promoting stability, prosperity and connectivity across Central Asia.
Qu Yingpu, publisher and editor-in-chief of China Daily, emphasized that China Daily is committed to bolstering its coverage of Belt and Road achievements, showcasing stories of people along the route and highlighting the global benefits of the initiative, encouraging exchanges and communication, especially among Generation Z. He also expressed optimism that China-Kazakhstan development momentum would continue, fostering stability and progress in the next “Golden 30 Years”.
In addition to this, the China International Import Expo Bureau joined forces with the Kazakhstan Trade Policy Development Center, setting the stage for the forthcoming sixth edition of the event. This strategic cooperation aims to capitalize on Kazakhstan’s past achievements in trade through its participation in CIIE, laying the groundwork for an even more successful future.
The resounding success of this event, held in the vibrant city of Astana, stands as a symbol of cooperation and unity, serving as a pivotal gateway for the BRI that stretches across Eurasia and beyond. It is poised to further enhance cooperation not only between China and Kazakhstan, but also throughout Central Asia and the rest of the world.
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