Senior officials meet to prepare for 18th CAEXPO
The senior official meeting for the 18th China-ASEAN Expo is held both online and on-site on April 7. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
The senior official meeting for the 18th China-ASEAN Expo was held both online and on-site on April 7, and saw the discussion of pressing issues such as investment, cooperation, on-site management and COVID-19 control.
Meeting attendees included senior officials from the economic and trade departments from 10 ASEAN countries and China, and officials from the consulates general of ASEAN countries in China.
The total trade volume between China and ASEAN expanded by 6.7 percent year-on-year to $684.6 billion in 2020, despite the impact of COVID-19, making ASEAN China's largest trading partner.
Wei Yan, deputy director of the Department of Asian Affairs at the Ministry of Commerce, said that China is looking forward to working with ASEAN to make full use of the CAEXPO and enhancing cooperation in area like commerce and investment, laying a solid foundation for China-ASEAN relationship in the future.
An official from the CAEXPO Secretariat noted that the CAEXPO will continue to shoulder its responsibilities as a major cooperation platform between China and ASEAN, and strive for regional economic recovery in the post-pandemic era.
Senior officials from ASEAN countries said that they will take an active role in preparing for the CAEXPO. Those from Laos - the Guest Country of Honor at the 18th CAEXPO - noted that the country will work with China to host a series of activities such as an event commemorating the establishment of diplomatic relations between Laos and China.
The 18th CAEXPO, covering a planned exhibition area of 124,000 square meters, will still be held both online and on-site, allowing 10 ASEAN countries to have their own exhibition areas. Upgrades will be made to this year's exhibition areas, including the one for China.