Cooperation creates new development opportunities for Northeast Asia

China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which has received positive response from Northeast Asian region, creates huge opportunities for the region’s diversification and sustainable development.

By Zhong Sheng, People’s Daily

Chinese President Xi Jinping’s address at the just-concluded Fourth Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) has drawn a clear roadmap for a bright future of Northeast Asia.

Xi summarized the fruits of China’s support for and participation in the cooperation with Russia’s Far East region and put forward four proposals on Northeast Asian cooperation, in the speech delivered to the EEF on Wednesday, in Vladivostok, Russia.

He said Northeast Asia should build up mutual trust to safeguard regional peace and tranquility; deepen cooperation to achieve mutually-beneficial and win-win outcomes; learn from each other to consolidate their traditional friendship; and realize integrated and coordinated development from a long-term perspective.

Based on the current situation of Northeast Asia, the proposals responded to the development demands of all regional countries and were widely echoed by representatives attending the meeting.

The international situation is now undergoing profound and complicated changes with mounting power politics, unilateralism and protectionism. But the overall situation in Northeast Asia remains stable and is improving, despite of complicated global political and economic landscape.

Against this backdrop, countries in Northeast Asia must seize this rare historical opportunity to further tap the full potential of cooperation so as to join efforts to promote peace, stability, and prosperity in the region.

The Northeast Asia has great development potential. Six Northeast Asian countries account for 23 percent of the global population, and their GDP make up 19 percent of global economy.

Besides, the region is endowed with rich energy resources and abundant supplies of financial and human resources, and owns the world’s leading scientific and technological research and development capabilities. The regional economies are highly complementary for each having respective strengths and distinctive features.

In 2017, trade between China and Russia’s Far Eastern federal district exceeded $7.7 billion. China has involved in more than 30 projects in the Advanced Special Economic Zones (ASEZs) and Vladivostok Free Port in Far East region, with a planned investment of over $4 billion.

China has grown into the largest trade partner as well as the largest source of foreign investment of the Far East.

Countless cooperation cases in the Northeast Asian region have proven that as long as the countries concerned can actively align their development strategies, and propel regional and sub-regional cooperation, they are fully capable and conditioned to bring their respective advantages into full play, and build a Northeast Asian economic circle by carrying out in-depth cooperation in various fields.

A closer Northeast Asian collaboration conforms to the interests and shared appeals of all sides in the region.

As an important member of Northeast Asia, China has always upheld the concept of peaceful development to create a harmonious and friendly neighboring environment, and endeavored to promote exchanges and dialogues among regional countries.

The Belt and Road Initiative proposed by China also offers a feasible path to enhancing cooperation in Northeast Asia.

At present, China is actively promoting the alignment of the Belt and Road Initiative with Russia’s Eurasian Economic Union and Mongolia’s Prairie Road Development initiative.

South Korea has expressed interests in taking part in the joint construction of the Belt and Road, and the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also said on many occasions that Japan hopes to discuss cooperation with China within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative.

China’s Belt and Road Initiative, which has received positive response from Northeast Asian region, creates huge opportunities for the region’s diversification and sustainable development.

“A harmonious, united and stable Northeast Asia with mutual trust conforms to the interests of all countries and the expectations of the international community, and is also significant for safeguarding multilateralism and promoting a more just and equitable international order,” Xi said in his speech.

By joining hands and making unremitting efforts to promote cooperation, we will create a bright future for Northeast Asia.

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