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BRI forum seeks greater trade and investment cooperation

Ros Chanveasna / Khmer Times Share:
Panellists speak at the 2018 Forum on Global Production Capacity and Business Cooperation in Hubei province’s Wuhan city. KT/Ros Chanveasna

Hubei province, China – World leaders gathered here in the city of Wuhan to discuss trade and investment cooperation in Belt and Road countries on Friday.

The BRI is China’s development strategy proposed by Chinese President Xi Jingping in 2013. The strategy focuses on connectivity and cooperation between participating countries.

Dubbed the “New Silk Road”, the BRI has enlisted more than 130 countries over the past five years.

China has been using development as a key element to promote international capacity-building cooperation, said Ning Jizhe, deputy director of China’s National Development and Reform Commission.

“China’s opening up to the outside world is all-round and opportunities are offered both ways,” Mr Ning said, adding that China will work with participating countries in order to adhere to BRI’s construction initiatives.

Participants listen to a presentation at the forum. KT/Ros Chanveasna

Mr Ning was speaking at the 2018 Forum on Global Production Capacity and Business Cooperation, a two-day forum attended by more than 2,000 world leaders, diplomats, business people and other dignitaries from nearly 100 countries.

The forum aimed to promote global production capacity, mainly focusing on infrastructure, energy and mining, machinery and equipment, and agriculture.

Harry Sam At, vice chairman of Cambodia’s Council for Agriculture and Rural Development, said the BRI is a way for Cambodia and China to benefit from economic cooperation.

“Since President Xi Jinping initiated the BRI, Cambodia has enlisted and now enjoys benefits of the initiative,” Mr Sam At said. “We have seen a lot of Chinese companies investing in Cambodia.”

He noted that China is Cambodia’s main source of foreign direct investment in the sectors of agriculture, infrastructure, textiles, hydropower, and tourism.

“We would like to extend cooperation with China on trade and investment and we also encourage more Chinese investors to come to Cambodia, especially in the agriculture sector,” he said.

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