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In Year of 2018: A Great Deal of Work to Do for China−ASEAN Development and Cooperation

Post Time:2018-02-01 11:13:15

  World Wide Web, January 30th, 2018: China and ASEAN are both friendly neighbors and important partners for economic and trade cooperation. Mr. Xu Ningning, Executive President of China-ASEAN Business Council, noted the other day when interviewed by reporters that there are lots of work that can be done and to do in enhancing cooperation between China and ASEAN for common development in 2018, and that the two sides are supposed to roll up sleeves for more efforts to go forward hand in hand.
  China-ASEAN Business Council is one of the dialogue cooperation mechanisms between the two sides. Executive President Xu Ningning analyzed that bilateral exchanges in economic and trade cooperation were active in 2017, which provides favorable conditions for the further development and cooperation between the two sides in 2018.
  He added that, in 2017, the bilateral trade volume exceeded 500 billion USD, soaring to record highs, and its proportion of China’s total foreign trade volume had risen to 12.54%. Specifically speaking, the trade volume between China and AEASN in 2017 has reached 514.8 billion USD, increasing by 13.8% compared with that of the previous year, which is faster than the average growth rate of China’s foreign trade and is the fastest growth rate among China’s top three trading partners (i.e. EU, the US and ASEAN). Besides, in 2017, China’s export to ASEAN increased by 9%, and China’s import from ASEAN increased by 20%. And in the perspective of the growth rate of trade volume between China and ten ASEAN countries, there are four countries with the growth rate exceeding 20%: Brunei (increasing by 36.5%), Laos (increasing by 28.6%), Vietnam (increasing by 23.5%) and Cambodia (increasing by 21.7%).
  Xu Ningning also referred that Chinese enterprises increased theirs investment in 59 countries along the Belt and Road in 2017, and the top four countries with the highest investment volume are all from ASEAN, i.e. Singapore, Malaysia, Laos and Indonesia.
  According to Xu Ningning, the economic and trade cooperation and development between China and ASEAN in 2107 is mainly due to the sustained economy growth of both China and ASEAN which are geographically connected, the stronger eager for economic cooperation with the other side, the increasing activities for docking and matchmaking, the growing complementarity in economic cooperation, the gradual and organic joint of the Belt and Road Initiative and the establishment of ASEAN Community, the mitigation of the South China Sea issue, which is bound up with the development and prosperity of countries in this region.
  He further analyzed that, the economic growth of ASEAN in 2018 would take a favorable trend. And the reasons are as follows:
  Firstly, for ASEAN itself: It takes a trend of political stability; the sustained economic growth in 2017 has laid a good foundation; ASEAN is implementing relevant consensuses, such as ASEAN Community Vision 2025, ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) Blueprint 2025, Master Plan on ASEAN Connectivity 2025 (MPAC 2025), ASEAN Declaration on Innovation, and other plans for promoting economic growth; some ASEAN countries are faced with challenges of general election and pressure from counter-terrorism, which can become a success or a relief only on the basis of economic growth.
  Secondly, for the exterior of ASEAN: The extraterritorial economies have developed economic cooperation with ASEAN and become the external support for ASEAN economic growth; besides, there also takes a favorable trend in world’s economic growth despite some factors of uncertainty, which provides external environment for the economic growth of ASEAN.
  Xu Ningning also mentioned that, China has always taken ASEAN as a priority in its periphery diplomacy. In last November and this January, China’s Leaders paid visits to four ASEAN countries successively, and issued China-Vietnam Joint Statement, China-Laos Joint Statement, China-Philippines Joint Statement and China-Cambodia Joint Communique respectively, and also reached a series of consensuses, which all lay a solid foundation for future cooperation and development.
  As Xu Ningning put it, China and ASEAN will make plans on their development direction and focuses in a medium and long period while commemorating the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the strategic partnership between the two sides this year. The two sides will enhance cooperation in a series of perspectives in production capacity, connectivity, the upgrading of China-ASEAN Free Trade Area, the upgrading of Lancang-Mekong cooperation and cooperation in other fields. In China-ASEAN Innovation Year of 2018, the two sides will conduct lots of cooperative programs for innovation-driven development, including hosting China-ASEAN Cooperation Conference on Technology Transformation & Innovation, China-ASEAN Youth Innovation & Entrepreneurship Competition etc. Additionally, in the perspective of regional cooperation, the two sides are supposed to work hand in hand to promote RCEP negotiation and push ahead trade and investment liberalization and facilitation this year. All in all, there are a great deal of things that can be done and to do for both sides for joint progress, and to complete these things is a realistic choice for common development.

  As is known to all, in the new year, China-ASEAN Business Council will continue to play its role in assisting domestic provinces and municipalities to dock with ASEAN countries for economic and trade cooperation based on their advantages, and continue to give full play to its channel advantages to enhance industry and enterprise cooperation between the two sides....

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