On 24 August 2018, ASEAN-China Centre (ACC) and Beijing People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (BPAFFC) jointly hosted the ASEAN-China Day Fair in commemoration of the 51th anniversary of ASEAN and the 15th anniversary of ASEAN-China strategic partnership. Mr. Chen Dehai, Secretary-General of ACC, Mme. Tian Yan, Standing Vice President of BPAFFC, Mr. Thit Linn Ohn, Ambassador of Myanmar to China, Mr. Dang Minh Khoi, Ambassador of Viet Nam to China, Mme. Yang Mu, Counsellor of Department of Asian Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, diplomats from ASEAN member states, press and representatives from various sectors from both ASEAN and China, in total around 150 people attended this event.
Secretary-General Chen Dehai said in his remarks that, since its inception, thanks to united and arduous efforts, ASEAN has become an important force in the region and played a central role in promoting East Asia regional cooperation and advancing regional prosperity and development. Among ASEAN’s many dialogue partnerships, ASEAN plus China stands out as the most vibrant pair with the most substantial cooperation. People-to-people exchanges is one of the important pillars of ASEAN-China relations. By hosting the 2018 ASEAN-China Day Fair, ACC hopes to provide a platform for lively interactions, and make new contributions to further advancing ASEAN-China strategic partnership.
Ambassador Thit Linn Ohn delivered remarks on behalf of ASEAN embassies. He said that connected by mountains and rivers, ASEAN and China share a long-standing tradition of people-to-people and cultural exchanges. In recent years, China and ASEAN countries have been working closely to enhance people-to-people exchanges by promoting cultural cooperation to deliver tangible benefits topeoples in the region. This event promotes the public awareness on the cultural integration of ASEAN and China and creates opportunities for sharing information and resources. He wishes to see ACC continue to organize the event annually.
Counsellor Yang Mu said that China always gives high priority to ASEAN in its neighborhood policy. With joint efforts, China and ASEAN have made leapfrog progress in advancing their relations from quantity to quality. The China-ASEAN relationship has shifted from a period enjoying rapid development to a relationship of maturity. It means this relationship has entered a new stage of all-around progress. ACC plays a unique role in enhancing people-to-people ties. She hoped that more “down-to-earth” activities like the Fair could be held in the future to enhance mutual understanding and awareness of ASEAN-China cooperation for people from both sides.
The ASEAN-China Day Fair displayed unique cuisine and traditional cultural performances from both ASEAN and China, including ASEAN’s singing, dancing and musical instrument performance and China’s Peking Opera, acrobatic show, martial arts and tea art presentation. In a delightful atmosphere, the guests experienced the unique charm of ASEAN and China cultures and discussed the broad prospects for ASEAN-China friendly exchanges and cooperation.