【By Zhang Ao from Global Times Online】The 2018 Beijing International Forum on People-to-People Friendship was scheduled to be kicked off on May 26th. The 5-day event, themed with “Promote and Strengthen People-to-People Friendship and Bonds”, is an exchange of both cultures and experiences of municipal governance. It encourages the young generation of each country to carry forward the cause of civil ties, and work together to solidify the foundation of People-to-People exchanges.
I am pleased to be back to this vibrant and charming city of Beijing in conjunction with the 2018 Beijing-Hebei-Tianjin International Exchange Week. On behalf of the MCFA, I thank the Organising Committee for the invitation and the opportunity to say a few words on this auspicious occasion. I wish to congratulate the organisers, in particular the Beijing Peoples’ Friendship Association for successfully bringing all of us together today to renew as well as further strengthen our friendship and partnership.
I understand this Conference has attracted 100 participants from 30 countries. This demonstrates that the participants including me, find great value in the Conference as a platform to further enhanced our friendship, mutual understanding and cooperation with China, in particular, Beijing, Hebei, Tianjin. The programme laid out is indeed comprehensive, providing us a better appreciation of the development in the Beijing Hebei Tianjian area in the various sectors such culture, science and technology , urban planning and trade. The organisers is aslo to be commended for including the agenda on youth exchange programme. I am of the view that youth exchange programme is a vital component of the people’s to people’s connectivity, particularly in the context of BRI.
I am happy to share that Malaysia and China enjoy a healthy and vibrant relations. Over the last 44 years since the establishment of diplomatic relations, a solid political, economic, and cultural foundation has been laid. This can be seen from the mutual trust, robust people to people connectivity and strong progress on Malaysia China Comprehensive Strategic partnership. In recent years the exchanges at the level of government, people to people has shown increased activity, reflecting the strong bond of friendship, particularly, in the Beijing Hebei Tianjian areas.
At level of Association to Association, I am happy to say that our cooperation and partnership has strengthened and deepened over the years. We have identified some new areas of cooperation and I am confident that we could implement programs in the coming years.
Malaysia too has positively participated in the BRI and has benefitted from the initiatives. We believe the sharing of common aspiration for development and the BRI would usher in more opportunities for China and Malaysia.
I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate the city of Beijing and Hebei for having chosen as the venue for the 2022 Winter Olympics. It will be a record for Beijing as a city that host both the Summer and Winter Olympics.
Finally I wish this Conference a great sucess that would result in further deepening of people’s to people’s cooperation between China and the countries present here.