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Condense Think Tank Consensus Jointly Promote the Construction of "the Belt and Road" and China-ASEAN Community of Common Destiny

Source:China-ASEAN Expo Secretariat    Time:2015-09-18 08:55:20

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On September 15-16, the Eighth China-ASEAN Think Tank Strategic Dialogue Forum, which was co-sponsored by Chinese Academy of Social Science (CASS) and the People's Government of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, and co-organized by Guangxi Academy of Social Science, CAEXPO Secretariat and Guangxi Institute of Beibu Gulf Development, was held in Nanning. Li Peilin, Vice President of CASS, Zhang Xiaoqin, Vice Governor of Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region, Klot Thida, President of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, Prof. Sum Chhum Bun, Vice President Royal Academy of Cambodia, and Chairman of the Myanmar Institute of Strategic and Development attended the opening ceremony. The opening ceremony was presided over by Lv Yusheng, President of Guangxi Academy of Social Science and Guangxi Institute of Beibu Gulf Development.
 
More than 100 honorable experts and scholars attended the Forum, some of which are from think tank institutes and universities in ASEAN countries including Brunei-China Friendship Association, Cambodian Royal Academy of Sciences,  Indonesia University, Lao National Academy of Social Sciences, Malaysia National University, Myanmar Institute of Strategic and Development, Center for People Empowerment in Governance of the Philippines, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy of Singapore, Thailand Khon Kaen University, Vietnam Academy of Social Science and Vietnam Foreign Affairs University, some are consuls and representatives of ASEAN countries in Nanning, and some are experts and scholars from think tank institutes, universities, governments and enterprises in China, including Chinese Academy of Social Sciences,  China-ASEAN Business Council, Department of Asian Affairs of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, China Foreign Affairs University, Jinan University of Guangzhou and Chinese Academy of Geological Sciences.
 
Zhang Xiaoqin said in his speech that, to build "One Belt, One Road" and to build a China-ASEAN community of common destiny requires all parties to focus on the long-term and to develop integratively. The first is the integration of visions. To build "One Belt, One Road", the docking of national development strategies of countries along the Maritime Silk Road is indispensible. We advocate meeting halfway and complementary advantages, the construction of "One Belt, One Road" and "ASEAN Community",  "Two Corridors and One Ring" of Vietnam, "2011-2025 Overall Plan of Economic Development" of Indonesia and the docking of ASEAN countries’ development strategies should be strengthened to provide policy basis for reciprocal development. The second is interests integration. The economic development of China and ASEAN has been tightly coupled and inseparable. We should accelerate the upgrading of China-ASEAN Free Trade Area and RCEP negotiations, so as to promote the bilateral economic and trade cooperation, upgrading quality and efficiency, thus achieving the target of bilateral trade volume reaching 1 trillion US dollars by 2020. The third is the integration of values. China and ASEAN countries should follow the trend of peace, development, cooperation and win-win, continue to support each other, help each other, adhere to and seek common ground, learn from each other and advance together. Based on Chinese President Xi Jinping's three strategic orientations on Guangxi and centering on "Five Priorities"(namely policy coordination, road connection, monetary circulation, unimpeded trade and mutual understanding between peoples), Guangxi is building an important gateway and collaboration platform with accessibility, convenience, combination and publicity, so as to boost the construction of "One Belt, One Road" and China-ASEAN community of common destiny. First is to build ASEAN-oriented international thoroughfare. In terms of land, we should accelerate the construction of a new international channel from north to south in western China. Nanning, as a joint, connects Lanzhou and Xi'an (Lanzhou - Beihai) via Guiyang, Chengdu and Chongqing to the north, and connects the east line of China-IndoChina Peninsula Economic Corridor to the south through Pingxiang, Hanoi of Vietnam, Savannakhet of Laos, Phnom Penh of Cambodia, Bangkok of Thailand, and Kuala Lumpur of Malaysia. Thereby a new north-south international channel is formed in western China connecting Chinese western region, Indochina Peninsula, Central and Southeast Asia and "One Belt, One Road". As to the marine route, the cooperation network of China-ASEAN port city is constructed based on the Beibu Gulf. The Maritime Silk Road passenger and freight "shuttle bus" was in operation, and the new international shipping route and more frequent lines promote mutual investment on ports. The marine interconnectivity between China and ASEAN is promoted by deepening the two-way routes, ports construction, port industry, trade and tourism cooperation. The second is to promote cooperation on international capacity. With parks' carriers including China and Malaysia "two countries, two parks", China-Vietnam Cross-border Economic Cooperation Zone, Dongxing National Key Development and Opening Test Zone, Comprehensive Financial Reform Pilot Area along the Border, and integrating "bringing in" and "going global", China-ASEAN reciprocal investment on industrial parks should be strengthened. Third is the construction of China-ASEAN Information Harbor. Guangxi will take networking, information exchange, mutual benefit as the base to promote information infrastructure interconnectivity between China and ASEAN, upgrade land and sea optical cables and other international conditions, and promote technological research and innovation and industrial cooperation in mobile Internet, Internet of Things, cloud computing, big data, smart city. Industries such as cross-border e-commerce, Beidou satellite navigation, new media of network culture, mobile, new display and other industries should be actively developed, and five platforms, namely infrastructure, information sharing, technical cooperation, trade and services, cultural exchanges should be built. China-ASEAN Information Harbor is to be built in Nanning, which will provide pivot service and act as demonstration base. Hence, regional international communications network system and information services hub is formed for co-building "Information Silk Road." The fourth is to promote the upgrading of China-ASEAN Expo. By enhancing the professionalization, internationalization, branding and informatization of CAEXPO, the "five upgrades" of China-ASEAN Expo should be achieved in features, content, capacity, radiation, hardware and software.
 
Li Peilin, said in his speech, "One Belt and One Road" is an important initiative proposed by China to adapt to the new pattern of international and domestic development, and it has important significance in deepening China's current reform, building the "one body and two wings" in the new round of opening up and accelerating the development of the Midwest regions of China. The construction of "One Belt and One Road" also fits the common needs of the countries along the road because it sets a new international platform for complementary advantages and open cooperation and provides new development opportunities for them. It will also help to strengthen the exchanges, appreciation and mutual learning between different civilizations, and contribute to the prosperity and regional economic cooperation of the counties along the road, so it is a great course which benefits people in these countries and the development of world peace. So far, "One Belt and One Road" construction has made some early achievements. It is the great economic vision of the countries along the road to open cooperation, and also a complex and difficult systematic project facing many difficulties. Opportunities and challenges exist simultaneously, and conflicts and problems coexist. It is urgent for research institutions to fully play their role as think tank, in order to make in-depth studies and actively implement "One Belt and One Road" development strategy. Chinese Academy of Social Science (CASS) is willing to and expects to work together with experts and scholars from different countries, and overcome difficulties to constantly improve the mechanism and platform of China-ASEAN Think Tank Strategic Dialogue Forum, so that think banks and think tanks will play an increasingly important role in intellectual support and decision making in the future "One Belt and One Road" construction and the comprehensive cooperation between China and ASEAN.
 
Klot Thida, President of the Royal Academy of Cambodia said in his address that the fact that China put forward the great vision of "One Belt and One Road" and established the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and Silk Road Fund indicates that China will further open up, carry forward the spirit of the ancient Silk Road, promote the overall development of Asia and drive the common prosperity and development of Eurasia inland areas and coastal areas. Klot Thida extended his gratitude for China’s investments in various areas in Cambodia, and he pointed out that the Sino-Cambodia comprehensive strategic partnership has promoted the socio-economic development of Cambodia, improved the people's well-being, and stabilized and promoted the China-ASEAN relation as a whole.
 
After the opening ceremony of the forum, the participating experts made keynote speeches on the theme of "One Belt and One Road" and the construction of China-ASEAN community of common destiny, and discussed on the three topics, namely path selection of the construction of "One Belt and One Road" and China-ASEAN community of common destiny, "One Belt and One Road" and China-ASEAN production capacity cooperation, and "One Belt and One Road" and China-ASEAN interconnectivity.
 
Experts and scholars at the forum all agreed that: "One Belt and One Road" is a cooperative win-win road to promote peaceful development and achieve common prosperity. It not only fits the common needs of the countries along the road, but also opens a new international platform for complementary advantages and open cooperation of these countries. It provides new opportunities for development, strengthens exchanges, mutual learning and appreciation between different civilizations, promotes economic prosperity and regional economic cooperation of these countries and helps to promote regional stability and security, so it is a great course which benefits people of all countries along the road and the development of world peace. The cooperation between China and ASEAN is very important in the whole "One Belt and One Road" strategy construction. Deepening cooperation between China and ASEAN and jointly building the Silk Road economic belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road are important initiatives to strengthen the strategic partnership of China and ASEAN countries, and it is of great significance to build the updated version of China-ASEAN Free Trade Area and the China-ASEAN community of common destiny with closer relation.
 
Pragmatically promote the "One Belt and One Road" construction by enhancing China-ASEAN interconnectivity and capacity cooperation has become the hot topic of this forum. Experts pointed out that currently "One Belt and One Road" construction still lacks support from specific projects and programs. And further strengthening the infrastructure construction and interconnectivity of China-ASEAN ports, highways, railways, aviation and fiber optic should be strengthened. Industry cooperation model should be innovated, and industry and production capacity cooperation of advantageous manufacturing industries, energy, new technologies, finance, education, etc. should be deepened. These not only conform to the development needs of China and ASEAN countries, but also provide practical support for the "One Belt and One Road" construction. By strengthening education and cultural exchanges in ASEAN to promote mutual understanding between peoples, increase understanding and trust is also the issues warmly discussed by the experts. They believed that constant expansion of cultural and education exchanges including China-ASEAN cultural exchanges, academic exchanges, talent exchanges, media cooperation, communication among young people and women as well as volunteer services can promote the awareness and recognition of people in all sectors of the countries and promote the formation and development of the awareness of community of common destiny, which will lay a solid public opinion foundation to further deepen the China-ASEAN cooperation. The experts also pointed out that currently most of the ASEAN countries have insufficient knowledge, analysis, recognition, not enough trust and uneven actions towards "One Belt and One Road", which set barriers for the construction. China and ASEAN need to exchange opinions, discuss policies and negotiate for method in every stage in depth during the implementation of the key cooperation project, in order to promote pragmatic and effective cooperation. The think tanks in China and ASEAN countries should play their full role in this aspect and make joint efforts to promote China and ASEAN countries to discuss together, build and share the "One Belt and One Road" construction, and promote governmental consensus with think tank consensus.
 
"China-ASEAN Think Tank Strategic Dialogue Forum", as an international high-end platform for exchange and dialogue of think banks and think tanks in China and ASEAN countries, has been held successfully for eight consecutive years. It has collected ideas and strength, generated suggestions and methods for planning the new win-win China-ASEAN cooperation. Many constructive suggestions have been adopted by relevant governments and institutions, which have made important contributions to promoting the intensive development of China-ASEAN regional cooperation. 

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