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Vice Foreign Minister Li Baodong Gives Exclusive Interview to CCTV on Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation

2017-05-11 15:42


On May 10, 2017, Secretary-General of the Preparatory Committee of the Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation and Vice Foreign Minister Li Baodong gave an exclusive interview to CCTV in Beijing. He gave an overall introduction on the preparation progress, major activities, agenda, outstanding features and expected results of the forum.

Li Baodong said the forum is the first home-field diplomatic activity with highest level and largest scale proposed and held by China. At present, the preparation work has been completed in all aspects. The announcement of the plan for the forum by President Xi Jinping early this year stimulated all parties' passion for attending the forum, making it hard to join the forum. Currently, and over 1500 official representatives from over 130 countries and 70 international organizations, including 29 heads of foreign states and governments will attend the forum. Besides the leaders announced at the previous stage, President Almazbek Atambayev of Kyrgyzstan will also attend the round-table summit at the invitation of President Xi Jinping. Meanwhile, about 4000 journalists will come to cover the forum.

Li Baodong said the forum is rich in content and consists of three major parts: the opening ceremony, the round-table summit and the high-level meeting. On May 14, President Xi Jinping will attend the opening ceremony and deliver a keynote speech, after which there will be a high-level plenary meeting. On the afternoon, there will be 6 parallel meetings on the subjects of policy coordination, facilities connectivity, unimpeded trade, financial integration and people-to-people bonds, and think tank. On the evening, President Xi Jinping and Prof. Peng Liyuan will host a welcoming banquet at the Great Hall of the People for the foreign leaders and their spouses attending the forum, and invited them to watch the art show at National Theatre after the banquet. On May 15, President Xi Jinping will chair the round-table summit and meet the press after it. President Xi Jinping will introduce the main results of the summit. During the forum, President Xi Jinping will also preside over several state visits and bilateral meetings.

Li Baodong pointed out that the forum has three prominent features: the first is cooperation. The guests and participants I introduced just now come from all over the world, including developing countries, developed countries, as well as international organizations. This fully embodies the influence and appeal of the "Belt and Road" initiative, as well as the wide recognition from all parties. The second is openness. There is no precedent for holding such a forum. As the initiator of the "Belt and Road" initiative and the host of the forum, China always upholds the concept of openness, inclusiveness and transparency so as to jointly build the forum through consultation to meet the interests of all. The third is green. This forum takes full advantage of the existing venues, including the National Convention Center, the Yanqi Lake International Convention Center. There are no newly-built venues or facilities. From the venue arrangements and conference supplies to guest reception, all the preparations are based on the practical principle and highlight green economy, environmental protection and recycling, achieving the goal of a thrifty and green forum.

Li Baodong stated that all parties have three expectations from this forum: the first is to listen to the important speech President Xi Jinping delivered at the opening ceremony; the second is to achieve a series of outcomes from practical cooperation, including releasing a joint communiqué, signing a series of cooperation documents and project agreements; the third is to implement the Silk Road Spirit and discuss major future cooperation plans.

Li Baodong said that according to the instructions of the CPC Central Committee to prohibit disturbing residents, Beijing adheres to the idea of "put hard work in daily life", combine the forum's preparation work with daily city management without traffic control or arranging days off for people at work, and enhance the city operation, service, and environmental improvement, which have achieved remarkable results. Such gestures manifest that Beijing has a world-level capability in city management and conference hosting. Now hosting large conferences has become an ordinary state in Beijing, which also reflects the hospitality of people in Beijing. Beijing has been well prepared in terms of medical security, transportation and other fields, and warmly welcomes guests from all over the world to the forum. We are ready!

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