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East China's Zhejiang rising to be hub for China-CEEC cooperation

NINGBO, China, June 9. /PRNewswire/. The second China-CEEC Expo & International Consumer Goods Fair and the 23rd China Zhejiang Investment & Trade Symposium will be held from June 8 to June 11 in the eastern coastal city of Ningbo, Zhejiang Province, east China, according to Zhejiang Provincial Commerce Department.

Co-organized by the country's commerce ministry and the local provincial government, the event will feature trade exhibitions, investment talks and people-to-people exchanges. Against the global COVID-19 epidemic and economic recession, Zhejiang and Central and Eastern European (CEE) countries have once again joined hands, integrating economy with people-to-people exchanges and giving equal emphasis to trade and investment. The two sides will carry out all-round, high-quality and multi-level cooperation.

Zhejiang, located on the southeast coast of China, has made great efforts to build a high-level open platform represented by the China-CEEC Expo in its bid to become a central hub in boosting bilateral cooperation.

Leveraging the bilateral cooperation mechanism, Zhejiang has been dedicated in serving the development of the Belt and Road Initiative. A new development pattern is taking shape as Zhejiang seeks to lift the bilateral cooperation and local opening-up to new levels.

As China's only national-level institutional exhibition facing CEE, this year's expo focuses on building a new pattern and sharing new opportunities.

Three exhibitions have been set up specifically to showcase CEE countries, international consumer goods and imported goods, with a total area of about 200,000 square meters. More than 2,000 CEE exhibitors and over 6,000 Chinese purchasers will attend the event.

During the four-day event, more than 20 important events will be held to promote closer ties with CEE in the fields of economy, trade, science and technology, health, business associations and so on.

The expo is not only an important joint achievement following the China-CEEC Leaders Summit, but also a concrete action to promote the bilateral economic cooperation, trade exchange and high-quality development between China and CEE.

Since its establishment in 2012, the cooperation mechanism between China and CEEC has achieved fruitful results. Compared with nine years ago, the bilateral trade volume between China and CEEC increased by nearly 85 percent, exceeding 100 billion U.S. dollars for the first time in 2020. Two-way trips have increased nearly fourfold, and the China-Europe freight train service has covered most CEE countries.

As a vanguard of cooperation and development between China and CEE, Zhejiang has taken many measures to overcome the adverse effects of the epidemic, with its economic cooperation, trade exchanges with CEEC bucking the downward trend.

In the first quarter of this year, the total trade volume between Zhejiang and CEEC reached 3.96 billion U.S. dollars, up 42.5 percent year on year. While sea transport is blocked and air transport capacity is limited, the China-Europe freight train services starting from Zhejiang's Yiwu city to Europe has become an important link connecting economic and trade exchanges between Europe and Asia. By end-March, CEE countries had set up 514 enterprises in Zhejiang, with contracted foreign investment of 1.1 billion U.S. dollars.

Zhejiang has also made full use of the benefits of China-CEEC cooperation mechanism by linking it with the development of the China-CEEC economic cooperation demonstration zone, Zhejiang pilot free trade zone and the Zhejiang investment & trade symposium. Thus a new cooperation mechanism and the docking of new policies with CEE countries have been established. During the expo, the e-commerce cooperation and dialogue mechanism between China and CEEC will be launched to facilitate CEE enterprises' export to China.

In the next five years, Zhejiang will strive to import 20 billion U.S. dollars of goods from CEE countries with two-way investment exceeding 1.5 billion U.S. dollars. Zhejiang is expected to become a central hub of China-CEEC cooperation, an important bridge for CEE countries to enter the Chinese world market, and an important window to showcase China's development model to CEE countries.

CONTACT: Ms. Wang, Tel: 86-10-63074558